If a tree falls in the forest when everybody expects it to fall, does it make a sound?
Yes, says Hillary Clinton. It makes a deafening roar, says Hillary Clinton.
SHE WON THE WEST VIRGINIA PRIMARY BY A KAZILLION PERCENTAGE POINTS TUESDAY NIGHT, AND THAT, SHE SAYS, HAS TO MEAN SOMETHING!
Except the press doesn’t think so. The press is unimpressed. This may be the first time in election history in which the press has withdrawn from a race before the candidate.
As John Harwood of the New York Times and CNBC said on MSNBC Tuesday several hours before the polls closed, “The headline tomorrow will be: ‘Hillary Clinton Wins Big in West Virginia; Democratic Party Yawns.’”
Wrong! says the Clinton campaign. The party is not yawning, the party is finally waking up to the fact that Barack Obama is a loser!
As Howard Wolfson, Clinton’s communications director, said Tuesday: “I think superdelegates who have been moving toward Barack Obama in the last week are going to wake up tomorrow and say, ‘I’m a little concerned about the fact that our nominee, presumptive nominee, can’t win West Virginia. I’m a little concerned that he can’t win Pennsylvania or Ohio, or Michigan, or Florida.’”
To which the Obama campaign says: “What, us worry?”
Obama, who made only two trips to West Virginia, is doing the equivalent of flicking dust from his shoulders. He didn’t even bother making a concession speech Tuesday night. He was campaigning in Missouri instead.
Missouri is a state he already won in the primaries, but that was the point: He doesn’t care about primaries anymore. Actual voters casting ballots? That is so yesterday.
As everyone knows, the Democratic nomination is determined not by voters actually voting, but by superdelegates choosing whomever they please. (They are the Democratic Party’s equivalent of the Electoral College, a safeguard against too much democracy. Unlike the Electoral College, however, superdelegates were not created in the 18th century but in 1984.)
What counts to Obama is that since his victory in North Carolina and narrow loss in Indiana last week, he has picked up 27 superdelegates and Clinton has picked up one and a half.
Roy R. Romer, a former governor of Colorado, a former Democratic Party chairman and a superdelegate, endorsed Obama on Tuesday, saying: “The math is controlling. This race, I believe, is over.”
Why did Romer decide to back Obama? Obama’s health care plan or his policy on Iraq or his position on the Alternative Minimum Tax? Naw.