Sunday, January 6, 2008

Obama Has Momentum

Barack Obama in New Hampshire (Jan 4, 2008). Click for LARGE size.
photo EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/Getty Images.

Obama 10% Over Clinton With 42.5 Hours Till Polls Open

Just after midnight Tuesday, New Hampshire voters in Hart's Location (Carroll County) and Dixville Notch (Coos County), will cast their ballots.

Barack Obama has massive momentum.

Hillary Clinton needs to do something, anything, to change the conversation.

This is what she's up against...

Washington Post

NASHUA, N.H. -- The line snaked for at least a half mile from the entrance of Nashua North High School. The first people in it had arrived at 7:30 a.m. -- two-and-a-half hours before Barack Obama was scheduled to start speaking. One woman had driven from West Hartford, Conn. The crowd was estimated at 3,000 and looked every bit of that number.

The movement has begun.

The Fix has long believed that the lone path for Obama to the Democratic nomination was to transform himself from a candidate into a movement. That is, by voting for Obama people would believe they are choosing something greater than simply a political candidate, that they are supporting a cause to change the way politics in America has been conducted.

In his speech here this morning, Obama cited the results in Iowa as a sign that things had changed in America politics. "A few days ago something special happened in the Midwest," Obama said to loud cheers. "The people of Iowa decided to set aside their fear and cynicism and reach for what is possible."

He cast New Hampshire as the next step in that process, a chance to validate the change that Iowa had voted for on Thursday. "In three days time you have the chance to continue that journey," Obama told the audience. "We are on the cusp of creating a new majority." Echoing perhaps the single best campaign commercial run so far in this race, Obama urged the crowd: "Our moment is now."

That message -- that in voting for Obama Americans are opting for a broad change in the way politics is conducted -- is VERY powerful and will be exceedingly difficult for Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (N.Y.) or anyone else to overcome.

Put another way: Obama's opponents are playing checkers while he is playing chess. When Clinton or John Edwards speak, they are regarded by those in attendance as politicians. Obama -- at least at the moment -- is seen as the leader of a movement.
If -- no matter what I said Thursday night -- Hillary Clinton has any chance, I echo and embrace what Jane Hamsher said at Firedoglake...

Clinton must shake everything up right now, or it's over.

NOW is the time for HRC to reject her war vote. NOW is the time for HRC to vow to go with our next Senate Majority Leader, Chris Dodd back to Washington to filibuster the FISA Bill. NOW is the time for HRC to introduce a new bankruptcy bill. NOW is the time for anything, 'cause Clinton is 10 points down and I think it's 15.

Everyone knows Hillary has experience. Ain't working for her.

“The 90s? Uh-huh. That's great... What have you done for me lately?”

Do I think she has the ovaries to shake everything up on a dime? I do not. Do I think Bill “The Comeback Kid” Clinton did?

Betcha your ass.

That is why Bill Clinton came in second in New Hampshire (I lived and voted in Amherst, NH in the winter of '91) and the Big Dog left with a HUGE bump in the polls while Paul Tsongas lost all his momentum in the press -- which is where it counts. And that, my friends, was freaking that.

HRC's lack of political instincts -- let us be blunt, her lack of courage to go with the flow, her lack of nerve to bet her entire political future on one stunt, one giant throw of the dice, sums up why you, Hillary Clinton, are about to get your ass royally kicked.

Actually it says, in the most blunt way possible, why perhaps, you shouldn't be President. You don't have a feel for Leadership. You have a feel for Legislating.

I am ever mindful we are electing a team of people, not a candidate.

It has not escaped me at all that till he was beat the hell up by the progressive blogosphere for several days, Obama did not have a single payer option in his health plan; it was a give away to the insurance companies. Even now, I am not satisfied, and this isn't the only place he's way too far in the middle for me.

Of all three major candidates, Obama is the most corporate in my view. He smiles and talks a lot about vision and change, but who he surrounds himself with are corporate advisers. And he takes their money with a smile.

But at the moment, none of that seems to matter. Platforms and facts are no longer at issue.

Obama has momentum. Unless Clinton finds some way to shift it, momentum will carry everyone straight into the voting booths for Obama Tuesday, a week from Tuesday, and all the way to Super Tuesday.

If Obama is nominated, will I work my ass off to get him elected? Count on it.

If Obama takes New Hampshire, which short of Clinton shifting the conversation radically in the next 42.5 hours, I think he will by 15 full points (not the current 10) as I think this isn't a bump, it's a wave and a direction and a force, I think Obama has the Big Mo and it's taking the United States for a ride to November.

If he keeps going this way, Obama will sweep the primaries through South Carolina, Florida, into Super Tuesday and run the table.

Regardless of who takes the Republican nomination, if Obama is nominated, he wins the general 60/40 with 100 electoral votes. I haven't seen this much genuine excitement around a candidate since Bobby Kennedy.

Our Moment Is Now