NEW YORK, (RUSHPRNEWS) February 13, 2008-In his private moments, as he watches Barack Obamaâ€™s ascendancy, former president Bill Clinton must be both terrified and elated. Clinton is frightened because he knows Obama can beat his wife, senator Hillary Clinton, for the nomination as the Democratic Party’s presidential candidate. Yet, he must also be thrilled because in Obama, Bill Clinton sees an image of himself; the young Bill Clinton of 1992.
Like the young Bill Clinton, Obama is an intelligent, inspiring, telegenic, exuberant, and buoyant, great orator.
The young Bill Clinton projected himself as a â€œchange agentâ€ and a â€œNew Democrat,â€ who wanted welfare reform, smaller government, and was able to attract Republicans as well.
Similarly, Obama says he represents the future and transformative change, by unifying Americans; heâ€™s attracting traditional Democrats, Republicans, independents, and especially, young voters.
Just as no one knew the young Bill Clinton when he launched his campaign for the White House, as governor of Arkansas in 1992, a few months ago, even as the nationâ€™s only Black senator, millions of Americans knew little about Obama.
Early in his own campaign in 1992, Bill Clinton stumbled in Iowa, when he came in well behind. Heading to New Hampshire, Clinton trailed senator Paul Tsongas badly, as allegations about his affair with Gennifer Flowers emerged.
The Clintonâ€™s went on â€œ60 Minutes,” to deny the allegations, and he fared better, with a strong second-place finish in New Hampshire just as the pundits were writing him off as an inexperienced governor of a small unimportant state, with character problems. He was dubbed â€œthe comebackâ€ kid.
Obama shocked the nation when he won the Iowa Caucuses, leaving Hillary Clintonâ€™s campaign momentarily unhinged. Then Clinton came back and â€œfoundâ€ her voice with a victory in New Hampshire, and people began to write off Obama, as an inexperienced rookie senator. Senator Clinton went on to â€œwinâ€ Nevadaâ€™s popular vote, even though Obama earned more delegates because his wins were more geographically spread.
But, proving that he too was a â€œcomebackâ€ kid, Obama won a magnificent victory in South Carolina—-That was, in fact, Obamaâ€™s â€œClintonâ€ moment. Obama won big, partly thanks to Bill Clinton.
Itâ€™s quite possible that Bill Clinton, the political wizard, had looked carefully at Obama and one day said to himself: â€œYou know what? This guy can actually beat my wife. Heâ€™s good. Real good. As good as I was; perhaps even better.â€
Yet, it’s more likely that both Clintons, during the long course of this debate, have watched Obama’s speeches together on TV together, and, inadvertently, but understandably, said to themselves, or even out loud: “This guy is good!”
Thatâ€™s why Bill Clinton, a little desperate, threw in the race-baiting tactics, hoping to drive a wedge between Whites and Blacks by reducing Obama into a â€œmereâ€ Black candidate.
The strategy backfired. While it may have initially eroded Obamaâ€™s White support, it solidified his backing amongst Black voters, many of whom a few weeks earlier had been loudly wondering â€œIs Barack Obama Black enough?â€ No one is asking that lunatic question anymore; Obama has been winning, on average with more than 80% of the Black vote.
Yet, Obama has also been doing well with White voters. He won more than 25% of the White vote in South Carolina, almost sharing it with Hillary Clinton and John Edwards, who was still in the race.
Obama then held Senator Clinton to a draw on â€œSuper Tuesday,â€ on February 5, when 22 states held either primaries or caucuses. Each candidate won 839 delegates; Obama actually won more states; 13 states to Clintonâ€™s 8.
Even before â€œSuper Tuesdayâ€ the momentum already was swinging in Obamaâ€™s favor. In January, Obamaâ€™s campaign raised more than $30 million to Clintonâ€™s less than $15 million. In recent weeks, Obama has been raising almost $2 million per day, while Clinton had to loan $5 million of her own money to her campaign to keep it afloat.
So, heading into last weekendâ€™s elections, it was no surprise that Obama ran away with all the four states with delegates at stake; Louisiana, Nebraska, Maine, and Washington. Obamaâ€™s victories in the latter three states, all overwhelmingly white, dispelled any lingering myths that Obama was a â€œBlackâ€ candidate. (Moreover, Obama has won states like Connecticut, Minnesota, Colorado, Idaho, Kansas, and North Dakota).
A more accurate analysis would be that Hillary is “merely” a White candidate; and thatâ€™s the only reason why sheâ€™s still in the race. Obamaâ€™s support is broad-based; heâ€™s winning as much as 35% of the White vote on average. Clinton is only winning about 18% of the Black vote.
Obamaâ€™s victories today, in Washington, D.C., in Virginia, and in Maryland, were spectacular. Obama won with overwhelming margins ranging from 30%-plus to 50%-plus as in D.C. He is now ahead on the delegates tallies.
Obama won in all demographics and income groups in Virginia –rich, poor, young, elderly, men, women, independents, Whites and Blacks.
Hillary Clinton is now banking on â€œbigâ€ wins March 4 in Texas and Ohio–both states with huge delegate numbers. This means sheâ€™s conceding next weekâ€™s vote in Wisconsin. Hillary Clintonâ€™s supporters claim she will win because Latinos, who make up about half the Texas electorate will back her.
Thatâ€™s being rather presumptuous. Obama won the Latino vote in Virginia, and he can only gain more support going forward to Texas where many of the Latino voters are younger and ready for Obama’s message of hope and change. Obama also will compete strongly in Ohio, which is believed to be leaning towards Clinton because of her ties with union organizers; yet, independents can also vote in Ohio and these tend to favor Obama.
Obama has fared very well in every state where heâ€™s competed head-to-head against Senator Clinton. With millions of dollars in his war chest for political commercials, and riding on the wave of his victories –now 8 states, and possibly 10 states by next Wednesday–Obamaâ€™s momentum could overwhelm Clintonâ€™s defenses in both Texas and Ohio. Voters flock to winners.
Bill Clinton, senator Clintonâ€™s husband, is one of this countryâ€™s political geniuses. He knows a good thing.
Bill Clinton knows Obama is very good. He knows Obama can defeat Hillary Clinton, because heâ€™s as good, if not better, than the young Bill Clinton.
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