Pennsylvania minus five weeks

Another thread for discussion of matters American. Since the last instalment we’ve seen Barack Obama win Mississippi 61-37 (19-14 in delegate terms), before running into his first bit of serious campaign turbulence courtesy of the audaciously hopeful Reverend Jeremiah Wright.

Author: William Bowe

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional teacher of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, has existed in one form or another since 2004, and is one of the most heavily trafficked websites on Australian politics.

1,202 comments on “Pennsylvania minus five weeks”

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  1. and that nightmare has faded of a man in Philadelphia whose vision was

    to capture the unjust rons of the past , and
    to remind us the unjust rons were done with silence from those who disagreed
    to acknowledge that silence when there is rons is an error
    to plead that the man himself has made the silence error when there were rons
    as we are all the children of the God without error
    but the man has learnt and we all must learn silence is not the answer to rons
    to invoke a future of no unjust rons as we will all as one be colour blind harmony
    to reassure the majority the you-tube sermons are for those not our future

    but the site sayeth there were no rons where people sat in silence
    and so happily the nightmare has gone
    God bless America

  2. Is Edwards about to endorse either Obama or Clinton? He’s appearing on Leno later this evening.
    There has been a rumour that he’s about to endorse Clinton. Will this make a difference?

  3. jaundiced view @ 73 –

    “drink or drugs” should read “drink or other drugs

    A lot of folk fail to make that connection including a very popular radio talking head who regularly blathers on about how we’re too soft on drug users, but also a couple of times a year invites the owner of a very large drug lab – aka brewery – onto his show. I’ve pointed out the contradiction to him several times but he just doesn’t get it.

    Dyno @ 83 –

    MF, on what basis could it possibly be disputed that there was a historical Jesus???!

    As I mentioned in a previous thread, there was never a historical ‘Jesus’ though there could have been someone named the Amaric version of Joshua. I won’t try Williams patience by getting into a discussion on theology beyond stating that my beliefs lay somewhere between deitism and atheism.

  4. Passing curious that when Obama’s pastor makes a comment that 911 was America’s ‘chickens coming home to roost’ it causes a storm of righteous indignation . Yet loony right pastors close to the Repugs such as Falwell and Buchanan have made exactly the same comments in the past. What a strange country. Good to see that Mike Huckabee came out in defence of Obama’s man, he has risen in my estimation.

  5. Regarding John Edwards, does anyone know how many delegates he had prior to the suspension of campaign, and is transfer to his endorsee automatic?

  6. As I’ve said from the start, I dont think Obama can win the presidency. Not because of Reverend Wright, but because Americans and not ready to vote for a black president. The Wright issue jusy gives whites an excuse they can give. Given what the christian right loonies have said bout 9/11, the hypocrisy of the conservative media is breathtaking.

  7. Morning Bludge, going to get chase and attack again by the wolves for quoting another right wing commentator, namely Boltie. But I did mention it first before Boltie that Obama is running over his grandma over to get to be POTUS. And I dont like it that a bit. TQ GR (#103) for the link.

    “For that reason, “I can no more disown him than I can disown the black community. I can no more disown him than I can my white grandmother — a woman who helped raise me, a woman who sacrificed again and again for me, a woman who loves me as much as she loves anything in this world, but a woman who once confessed her fear of black men who passed by her on the street, and who on more than one occasion has uttered racial or ethnic stereotypes that made me cringe”. And that’s where Obama lost me — and perhaps the election”

    BTW: Just heard Obama explaining that he did not mean to imply that his grandma is “racist”. Ron (#77), you are the expert on the definition of “racist”, what say ye?

    This is from a guy who said: “words mean everything”!!! This guy is digging more and more holes for himself than he can cover. Watch them polls.

    BTW: McCain’s age is looking like to be a big issue. Watch this space.

    Gee, Hillary is looking better and better each day.

  8. It is rumoured that Cheney’s trip to the ME may be the final precursor to the attack on Iran, the question now is will the US do their own dirty work or will they have their stooges in Israel do it for them. It is just a matter of time, the neo-cons have nothing to lose now. The axis of evil (Bush/Cheney/Rice) must be getting positively orgasmic over this one.

  9. MF,
    Your previous point about the doubt over Jesus’s name was not particularly relevant to me, nor I suspect, to most Christians (though it was mildly diverting I suppose).
    Not too many (none, perhaps) of the first century Christians seem to have had too many doubts about Jesus’s existence, but what would they know, they only met the guy!

  10. Finns, have a read of the two snippets below, then up the stakes of our bet to whatever you want. To win the race at this stage, Clinton needs about 70% of the rest of the SDs. You are assuming that Wright and Obama’s negatives will sway these folks. All SDs are being fed the information below as well. Obama is still playing for the endgoal of nomination, and that race remains over.

    Clinton Lie Kills Her Credibility on Trade Policy

    “Now that we know from the 11,000 pages of Clinton White House documents released this week that former First Lady was an ardent advocate for NAFTA; now that we know she held at least five meetings to strategize about how to win congressional approval of the deal; now that we know she was in the thick of the manuevering to block the efforts of labor, farm, environmental and human rights groups to get a better agreement. Now that we know all of this, how should we assess the claim that Hillary’s heart has always beaten to a fair-trade rhythm?”

    Hillary’s Nasty Pastorate

    “There’s a reason why Hillary Clinton has remained relatively silent during the flap over intemperate remarks by Barack Obama’s former pastor, Jeremiah Wright. When it comes to unsavory religious affiliations, she’s a lot more vulnerable than Obama.

    You can find all about it in a widely under-read article in the September 2007 issue of Mother Jones, in which Kathryn Joyce and Jeff Sharlet reported that “through all of her years in Washington, Clinton has been an active participant in conservative Bible study and prayer circles that are part of a secretive Capitol Hill group known as the “Fellowship,” aka The Family. But it won’t be a secret much longer. Jeff Sharlet’s shocking exposé, The Family: The Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power will be published in May.”

  11. It was only a matter of time before the dirt would be dug up about Hillary’s religious connections. All churches and religions carry extreme and corrupt elements, so any church-goer can be tarred by association.
    frankly, I would feel much safer with an atheist at the helm after seeing the damage that has been wrought in the name of whatever god is being fought for at the time, but that can’t happen in the delusional US, so Obama’s attitudes and values seem by far the most tolerant and least hawkish of the candidates.
    Enough warmongering already.

  12. #113 – Amigo, i have no doubt that Obama might win the battle with Hillary but he will lose the war with McCain. Obama has lost his own soul. He is just becoming another politician who is craving for power that he will use his own grandma to achieve that end. He shows he has no respect for his grandma and his elder.

    If Obama is genuine about the race issue, he should have made that speech as his manifesto at the beginning of his candidacy, not, as KR coined it, a “Please Explain” in order to save his own political skin.

    Watch them polls.

  13. Dyno @ 112 – This is an area that William prefers we don’t get into, so I won’t beyond noting that none of the written material in existance dates to a time when its authors could have personally met Him. At least not unless they lived for much longer than humans typically do, even now.

  14. Hillary is a Methodist for goodness sake.

    I don’t reckon she will need to spend 37 minutes telling the world about her faith and renouncing her mentor, a la Obama. The other names in her prayer group are safe and sound conservative Christians involved in political life. This is a beat up which will enhance Hillary’s position in the US.

    If this is an attempt to provide a relativist square up to Obama’s faith inadequacies, then bring it on is all that the Clinton crew will be saying.

  15. KR,

    That well may be so, but he calls it as he sees it.

    Why don’t you develop th argument rather than throw rocks at views you don’t agree?

  16. GG – There will be no public ‘square’s from the Obama camp. The point is that in lobbying for SDs, Clinton is now reported to be arguing that Wright is damaging. Obama’s response will be to point out that Hillary is going to receive some more ‘vetting’, and McCain has issues with Falwell (who he previously called an ‘agent of intolerance’ if I am not mistaken) and Hagee. If this becomes a slanging match, Obama has as much ammunition as any of the others. If it is about political nous and manuevering, he has shown over the previous months that he is better placed than either of the other two.

    Anyway, methinks this story might be on the backburner for a while:

    “Obama Passport Breached: Two State Dept Officials Fired, Investigation Underway
    Huffington Post | March 20, 2008 08:26 PM”

  17. Finns: ‘Obama has lost his own soul.’ – Where’d that atheism get to?

    ‘He is just becoming another politician’ – So he WAS more? I thought he was a phoney? I’ll let you in on a secret…he’s running for President of the US. Part of the job description is all but out of control ambition and ego.

  18. #122 Amigo, I got crucified for quoting some right wing commentators in support of my argument. Effing hell i am not even a right winger. Yet, you Obama dreamers keep on quoting huffingtonpost to support your argument, which is a well known liberal left wing website. dont you think this is a bit hypocritical.

  19. Pancho,

    Obama brought race and religion to front and centre of the campaign. I acknowledge it was always going to happen and it was just a matter of timing.

    However, this issue is a loser for Obama. Exposure of Hillary and McCain will probably show they are mainstream citizens. Can’t say the same for Obama can we?

  20. 121
    Greeensborough Growler

    When Bolt says that Obama chose to be black his argument is finished, finished before it’s even begun.

    I’m still waiting for the questions to be asked of McCain and his pride on appearing on a stage with the religious bigot, racist, sexist nutter John Hagee.

    Hagee makes Jeremiah Wright look like an angel.

    But since McCain has once again pandered to the religious right (which is predominently white), nobody even notices!

    When Obama says Wright is flawed, but is essentially a good man, who he cannot disown, then vile little creatures like Bolt jump out of the woodwork.

    Give me a break, Obama didn’t choose to be black, but Bolt chooses to be vile.

  21. What I have linked to @122 is an information page about a security breach, which in turn has links to the NBC, Washington Times and a statement from the Obama camp. If you want to point out the problem with it, I’m all ears.

    More broadly, the Huffington Post is a site of opinion, but also a central repository, with linkages to many outside sources. Articles are often just pathways to other publications. It is not under the control of a single individual or editorial board.

    You were pulled up for quoting Bill Kristol on the very day he was reprimanded for lying in a slur piece he did on Obama. His credibility was as issue, and this was pointed out.

  22. #123, Amigo, no, no, no and no. Obama was supposed to be different; not your vile pollies like Hillary and McCain; he was a unifier; he was the change that America is seeking; he was above the dirty politics; he was “yes, we can” to do all this. Remember “yes, we can”?

    You Obama dreamers simply do not have consistency. you change your tune as the wind blows. What happen to your song Kumbaya, my Lord, Kumbaya?

    I will say it again, with Hillary, you get her warts and all, the good, the bad and the ugly.

  23. Finns –
    to be fair not one of the Obi supporters has characterised him as perfect – just better than the others. And I stand by that. I think his speech proved that he is an exceptional man and an unusual politician.

  24. GG – “Exposure of Hillary and McCain will probably show they are mainstream citizens. Can’t say the same for Obama can we?”

    While I disagree that Clinton and McCains connections will position them as mainstream (I think that they too will raise eyebrows) I can see the point that you are making. Obama’s connection to Wright is an alien phenomenon for a frontrunning Presidential candidate in the way that the others connections are not.

    I would make two points about this. One, there are many things about Obama that are unique, and this has been part of his appeal. Two, the last Presidential frontrunner to be such a social outsider was John Kennedy, who went on to be perhaps the most popular POTUS ever.

  25. Finns, while your entire post @128 is objectionable, let me just respond to “I will say it again, with Hillary, you get her warts and all, the good, the bad and the ugly.” – You DON’T get Hillary at all – she has lost.

  26. #130, jen – no, he was the messiah in the beginning. he said so himself. I can never forget his speech after the NH primary when he said: “we are the change America is seeking” and the chanting of yes, we can, yes, we can from his supporters.

    It was very powerful. I was moved, but not in his direction. He lost me that night because to me, it was no longer a political campaign. it was a religious crusade Obama’s way. You can tell from his expression that night that he thinks he is different and above politics.

    I’d say this to his credit. The Obama phenomena is good overall. It does break the traditional political mould and debate. In that sense, he is an agent of change and a pioneer.

    But as a pioneer, like many pioneers before him, the actual change will not happen with him. he will not become the first POTUS. Someone else in the future will be and that person can thank Obama for the trail that he has blazed open.

  27. Finns – as I have said before I don’t feel comfortable with the evangelical campaigning that they ALL do in the US. it is a cultural thing at it makes me cringe. But his statement that ‘we’ (not I) ‘are the change America is seeking’ is accurate. That is why he so much support. He is representing a new approach to the current political paradigm. Whether the current voters are ready for it or not is the unknown element. But if they go for Hillary or worse McCain, then nothing will have changed. And it desperately needs to.

  28. Finns @ 134 – Is this Good Friday or Groundhog day?
    This is old territory – wasn’t it all said yesterday?
    Or perhaps I’m trapped in “The Trueman Show”

  29. Another constant. The relentless imperative of the numbers:

    Total Delegates 1627 – 1496 Obama + 131
    Pledged Delegates 1414 – 1246 Obama + 168
    Popular Vote 49.5 – 46.9 Obama +2.6
    Popular Vote (w/FL) 48.5 – 47.1 Obama +1.4
    Nat’l RCP Average 47.2 – 44.2 Obama +3.0

    As an Easter analogy, Hillary is bleeding from the hands and feet, been mortally lanced in her side, wrapped up in myrrh and aloes and placed in a cave, and a huge rock has been rolled over the entrance.
    What chance resurrection on Monday?

  30. Just an observation about all this Jeremiah stuff:

    Given the attention span of the fast food 24hr news cycle, how long has this thing got?

    Given the financial markets are in meltdown, money is rushing around trying to hide (yum, cocoa prices dropped 11% last night, as traders bailed out of commodities) so desperately that 3 month T-bills are at low rates not seen since 1954!

    It’s turmoil like no one has seen, banks collapsing overnight (in UK, US and soon Europe), housing prices in the US falling, mortgage rates rising (yep, that’s right folks, the Fed can push on a string at the short end, but the cost of money is rising in any area where there’s risk), unemployment is rising and they are stuck in war that’s costing them serious trillions.

    Hello! Guess how long you can keep that stuff off the front pages?

  31. Ferny – I can’t see Hillary’s relics being pored over in 2000 years’ time! Make that 2000 hours’ time.

  32. Jen 143 – True, true. Hillary’s recovery could be helped by that myrrh though. It is apparently a useful herbal remedy – as well as being used for embalming by the ancient Egyptians:
    “It is an anti-inflammatory, an antioxidant, and antimicrobial, making it ideal for painful or swollen tissues. It is useful for bleeding gums, gingivitis, tonsillitis, sore throat (including strep throat), and bronchitis. The increased blood supply helps fight infection and speed healing when you have a cold, congestion, or infection of the throat or mouth.”

    However, the aloes with her may not be of the same assistance:
    “The drug Aloes is one of the safest and best warm and stimulating purgatives to persons of sedentary habits and phlegmatic constitutions. An ordinary small dose takes from 15 to 18 hours to produce an effect. Its action is exerted mainly on the large intestine, for which reason, also it is useful as a vermifuge. Its use, however, is said to induce Piles. “

    (before i get jumped on let me say i don’t know if Newsmax is right or leftwing)

    “Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has moved into a significant lead over Barack Obama for the first time in weeks in the race for the party nomination, according to a Gallup poll.

    The March 14-18 national survey of 1,209 Democratic and Democratic-leaning voters gave Clinton, a New York senator, a 49 percent to 42 percent edge over Obama, an Illinois senator. The poll has an error margin of 3 percentage points”

    Seems the Snake Oil Salesman isn’t a dead cert after all.

  34. AH jv @ 138, Back to Obama’s Mythematics. Still not enough for the nomination, no matter which way you look at it. Hillary can still win this.

    jen, Obama is just another politician who smells nice and has a way with words.

  35. Alright GG – We’ve got time today – lay it out. Let’s see your scenario as to how Hillary rolls the rock aside and steps out into the Easter Monday light of resurrection.

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