Wednesday, February 20, 2008
I've been a bit burned out on the Democratic primary campaign. Truth be told, I think the turning point for me was once I'd actually voted. I made a decision, felt good about it, had some buyer's remorse the next day, realized that I would have had the same feeling had I voted the other way, talked with my Dad and found out that -- separated by an ocean and a six-hour time difference -- we did the exact same thing on Super Tuesday (ie. we both went to the polls intending to vote for the same candidate only to change our minds and vote for the other one at the last minute) and that was enough for me to put the whole thing aside.
So I've watched the campaign unfold over the past few weeks with a somewhat dispassionate eye (although as someone who genuinely liked both candidates, my passions were less than enflamed to begin with). Which makes me feel comfortable making the following observation:
The Clinton campaign's performance since February 5th makes me wish that there were some sort of procedure in place whereby a candidate can be penalized by having delegates that they've previously won taken away from them. Something along the lines of a 15-yard penalty and loss of down in football. Because I've never seen anything as pathetic as what the Clinton camp has trotted out, not just once or twice, but consistently, almost daily, for the past two weeks.
As classless as Bill Clinton was in NH and South Carolina, I was willing to put that on him, not her. But there's really no one to hang the blame on for what's gone down the past few weeks. This is Hillary's campaign; in some ways it's her government-in-waiting, and she's the Commander-in-Chief. And if this is "ready from day one", well, then, Obama could probably get away with claiming that he really can walk on water.
I've said before that whenever I actually see Clinton in action, as opposed to just reading her press coverage, my opinion of her improves. Not surprisingly, I haven't actually seen much of her of late. It could be that the two upcoming debates could prove decisive in turning things around for her. But seriously, these past few weeks have reminded me of an elementary school class president election.