JANUARY 14, 2008
Mike makes a great point about Hillary's goal in questioning Obama's war opposition. I'd argued that "the hope seems to be to undercut what she sees as Obama's greatest strength, thereby unraveling the entire rationale for his candidacy." True enough, as far as it went. But, as Mike says, the Clintonites think Obama's greatest strength is his "unconventional" image, not his war-opposition per se. Accusing Obama of toning down his opposition for political reasons, as both Bill and Hillary have recently (e.g., "fairy tale"), would certainly accomplish that.
I still think any discussion of who-said-what about the war is a net loser for Hillary. Obama hasn't gotten much traction on Iraq--mostly because that debate is too backward-looking, I think. Now you have Hillary explicitly urging people to look backward.
On the other hand, I agree that if voters come to see this as a race between two conventional politicians, Hillary probably wins. (Just like she probably wins if it becomes a race between a "white candidate" and a "black candidate.") So this isn't crazy.