“No decisions tonight”

The headline says “CNN projects Obama clinches nomination”, but during what in many ways has sounded like a concession speech, Clinton has declared: “I will be making no decisions tonight”.

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.

2,132 comments on ““No decisions tonight””

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  1. #2044 Robert Bollard Says: [It’s interesting to watch the metamorphosis of Clintistas into McCainites] –

    Comrade Robertolich – what happened to Comrade Popov?

  2. Jen –
    You’re right, McCain is toast – just compare the 3 June speeches.

    And for those who find Blackberry Nip a little too lowbrow, we can offer the choice of a generous splash of Cold Duck.

  3. Obama said that he would: “use military force if necessary against al-Qaeda in Pakistan even without Pakistan’s consent”. It appears that Dubya has out pokered him. Well back to the drawing board. What about a nuke option?

    [Pakistan fury at deadly US strike – Pakistan’s Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani has condemned an air strike by Afghanistan-based US forces that Islamabad says killed 11 of its troops.

    The incident took place inside Pakistan, near the border with Afghanistan.

    The US military confirmed it had used artillery and air strikes after coming under fire from “anti-Afghan” forces.

    The incident comes as relations between the US and Pakistan militaries have been hit by mounting tensions.]


  4. On the whole Jim Webb thing.

    If Webb became Veep, his Senate spot would be appointed by the Dem Governor of Virginia (since Webb’s not up for re-election this time), so the Dems wouldnt lose Webbs spot in the Senate.

    The problem with Webb is that there would be 2 freshman Senators on the ticket which could be a problem. A Governor as Veep at least brings administrative experience and insight to the ticket – so the benefits of Webb in terms of his capability to mobilise certain demographics would have to outweigh the cons of no experience in administrative rolls (although him being Secretary of the Navy can be used to partially offset that, but only partially).

    Sebelius us interesting, but she’s dull and what does she really bring to the ticket apart from the administrative experience that any Governor brings? The experience of being a Governor aside, she reminds me a lot of Edwards in that she doesn’t cut through on the national stage and probably wont add much to the Dem vote even in her own State.

    Also remember that she didn’t so much win the race to be Governor in 2002 as much as the conservatives lost it – there was (yet again) a huge breakout of open warfare in the Kansas Republican party between moderates and conservatives during that time.Her skill was to use incumbency effectively to increase her vote in 2006 and govern in a popular way – so she knows how to govern popularly, but she hasn’t demonstrated any real capacity to campaign well when the race is open – not through any fault of her own, just because the circumstances have fallen that way.

    I also wonder whether the US would be willing to vote for a black man and a white women on the one ticket. In the 21st century one would hope that it wouldn’t make a rats arse of difference, but I’m a bit skeptical on whether the American populace has moved to a post-race, post-gender political outlook.

    Maybe a black bloke OR a white women on a ticket – but both? Maybe it’s too much for too many voters?

  5. I don’t think Webb would be portrayed as an inexperienced freshman Senator as much as he would a Vietnem vet and former Sec. of Navy under Reagan whose son has served in Iraq.

  6. Optimist,

    The Repubs would run advertising everywhere pointing out that Webb and Obama have 6 years experience in the Senate between them.
    The Dems would certainly highlight Webbs military background, but both themes would be out there fighting for a contested public mindspace.

  7. I understand that Webb’s ’06 Senate campaign ran a T.V ad that featured Ronnie Reagan praising Webb’s military service….
    “James’ gallantry as a Marine officer in Vietnam won him the Navy Cross and other decorations,” Reagan says.
    Pretty strong insulation from possible swifboating I’d say.
    I guess the key issue is how much congressional experience does Obama want in a running mate? One of the arguments against HRC is that she would compromise the change message. It’s a tricky one and I suppose that’s why we’re all deep in speculation.

    This might be a long shot, but there is a possible VP candidate who could represent both experience and change for this election….Al Gore.
    I’m not aware of a restriction on VPs serving more than two terms (I may well be wrong) and Gore has the ultimate experience. Of course, whether he would do it is another question.

  8. Other possible VP tips (particularly now that Strickland has emphatically ruled himself out) are:

    1. Gov. Ed Rendell (D – PA), who is a Governor of a key swing state and is a known Clintonista – he would surely help both in the mid-west and in reunifying the Clinton Dems with Obama.

    2. Gov. Bill Ritter (D – CO), who is also a Governor of a key swing state. He could also have an impact in states in the Mountain West (i.e, New Mexico and Montana). However, I haven’t heard his name mentioned much as a possible VP – I’m not sure why.

    3. Gov. Brian Schweitzer (D – MT). He’s Governor of a possible purple state and will also have pulling power in the Mountain West/Big Sky area. Whether he can flip any states apart from Montana is debatable. I’d say there are better options around…

    4. Gov. Tim Kaine (D – VA). My favourite. A moderate, long-time supporter of Obama. Governor of a key swing state, with possible cross-over appeal. Is popular in Virginia and may be enough to flip the state across to the Dems in November. Before he became Gov. of Virginia, he was the Lt. Gov. – so he has 6+ years in statewide office, in addition to being a former Mayor of Richmond for some time.

  9. First there’s this:

    WSJ/NBC Poll: Obama Holds Six Point Lead
    Sen. Barack Obama begins the general election campaign against Sen. John McCain with a 47% to 41% lead in the latest Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll, “but not so great an edge as might be expected given the gale-force political headwinds against” Republicans.

    Then in the next line there’s this:
    When asked without candidate names, Democrats hold a 16-point advantage, 51% to 35%, on which party they want to win the White House.

    Which contradicts the poll. All the evidence is pointing to a landslide, except the polls are’nt indicating the same.


  10. Well that makes sense. People want the Democrats, although not necessarily Obama.

    Some people might not vote presented with the choice of Obama and McCain but would answer generally that they have a preference to the Democrats.

  11. The flipside to LTEP’s comments @ 2114 (geez, we need a new thread) is that people don’t normally want to vote Republican, but they’re willing to give McCain a shot.

    This is probably due to McCain’s appeal amongst independents and conservative Democrats. It explains why normally blue states such as New Hampshire and Michigan are still firmly in the “toss-up” column – these states are full of the above two categories (independents for NH, conservative (Reagan) Dems in MI). Probably the same thing goes for OH and PA as well.

    What we may see this November is a Democratic landslide in Congress (where the generics are probably more accurate), with the Dems getting close to 60 in the Senate and picking up at least a dozen seats in the House, but a relatively close election for the White House.

    Seemingly inadvertently and through a series of “fortunate” events, the Republicans have managed to nominate their best candidate for the White House this year (something that they have been quite successful at for several elections now, sadly…)

  12. I suspect even if Obama wins in November, ESJ/Ron/GG will still be rabbiting on with their conspiracy theories! It’s a shame decent political discussion gets drowned out by these clowns!

  13. http://www.electoral-vote.com/

    I think some of their polling is extremely dodgy. For instance, I’d bet Obama wins Michigan in November, and McCain holds Indiana for the Republicans.

    LTEP and Chris: My most optimistic prediction for Obama is that he exceeds 300 electoral college votes, that’d be a virtual landslide in my books, I don’t believe all the wild predictions that states like Georgia and Alabama will magically turn Democrat. Winning Ohio, Iowa, New Mexico, and maybe Virginia would be enough for Obama! Florida seems to have been trending away from the Democrats recently, I’m not too hopeful about that one!

  14. Progressive,

    Trolling again, I see. Can’t mount an argument, so it is better to abuse than debate.

    It’s a shame decent political discussion gets drowned out by clowns like you!

    What do you do to justify your air intake?

  15. 2109 Progressive I disagree, having any military person goes against his change philosophy. The nut cases out there would love to bump him off to put a General in charge.

  16. Chris B,

    We haven’t actually met. However, it seems you are in training to become a KR lite. “Lots of meaningless posts that add nothing to the sum total of knowledge”.


  17. Chris: thanks mate!
    What’d be really interesting is if the Democrats get close to 60 seats in the senate, as predicted! Imagine an Obama presidency with huge majorities in both houses!

  18. And there are two or three moderate Republican senators, Olympia Snow of Maine for eg, who could be persuaded to vote with 58 Democrat senators on certain issues!
    But, all crystal ball gazing, we’ve got to get there first LOL

  19. Chris B,

    That might be the case from a European or even an Australian left perspective – but they aren’t voting in the US election.

    The US population has a far far different perspective on their military than you or the Euro’s do.

    Clarke or Zinni or Fallon or anyone of with a military background wouldn’t detract from Obamas meta-theme of “The US needs to change direction” one ounce as far as those voters in the US that decide elections are concerned.

    Not one ounce.

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