Hillary Clinton

Philadelphia Story
October 30, 2007

I saw another pretty strong night for Hillary Clinton in Philadelphia. On both substantive and stylistic levels we learned nothing virtually nothing new about the candidates tonight. In the media's funhouse of expectations and conventional wisdom, however, I suspect Barack Obama will again be judged to have come up a little flat. It may be a matter of his delivery, but even with sharpened critiques Obama somehow doesn't break through and grab your attention. A couple of things I haven't seen discussed elsewhere jumped out at me. One was Hillary's response to a question about her experience.

Dick Morris's Cloudy Crystal Ball
October 30, 2007

Politico's Mike Allen offers a highly entertaining excerpt from last night's "Hannity and Colmes": ALAN COLMES: "I want to remind you. I went through some old transcripts to look at what you said about Hillary Clinton before she was about to run and when she ran for Senate. You said that she wasn't going to win. She has 52 percent disapproval rating. She couldn't possibly win. As recently as November 6, just before the election, you said Lazio is going to win. Hillary can't win.

Obama V. Hillary

This passage from today's LA Times story on why Obama hasn't soared higher strikes me as a very useful microcosm: In a meeting hall at the fairground in rural Tipton, Obama was pointedly invited to criticize Clinton recently when a 65-year-old woman asked, "Why should I vote for you instead of Hillary Clinton?" Instead, he gave a somewhat rambling answer that began by complimenting Clinton as "very capable," "smart" and "tough." He also said she would be a "vast improvement over George Bush." Then he mildly knocked her for what he called her "conventional" views on foreign policy.

Two Threats To Hillary

Chris Cillizza has a good post up pointing out that the only two times Hillary Clinton has been knocked back on her heels this campaign--over her ties to lobbyists and her support for the Kyl-Lieberman resolution on Iran--John Edwards was behind it. Chris then takes up the question of who stands to benefit from this: [W]hile recent evidence suggests that it is Edwards not Obama who is best carrying the anti-Clinton message, it may not matter all that much when the actual votes are cast.

Is Hillary The Best Choice?

I don't quite understand Ross Douthat's take on Hillary Clinton and the Democratic field. He writes: As I've probably said before, Hillary may not be the best choice for the Democrats, but she's definitely the safest; I think nominating her more or less guarantees the party 48 percent of the vote, since she's sufficiently tested and savvy and all the rest of it to make a Dukakis or Dole-style wipeout almost completely unimaginable.

Why Do People Dislike Hillary?

Andrew Sullivan, who really seems to be angry about Hillary Clinton's poll numbers, approvingly quotes from (and links to), this Peggy Noonan column. Here's the bit that Andrew excerpts: "Who, of all the powerful women in American politics right now, has inspired the unease, dismay and frank dislike that she has? Condi Rice, Nancy Pelosi, Dianne Feinstein? These are serious women who are making crucial decisions about our national life every day. They inspire agreement and disagreement; they fight and are fought with. But they do not inspire repugnance.

So Rudy Beats Hillary. Then What?

Harold Meyerson makes a great point in his column today: In fact, with the honorable exception of long-shot candidate Mike Huckabee, the Republican field seems content with an economic program that comes down to opposing whatever Hillary Clinton proposes. Rudy Giuliani, campaigning hard to convince the Republican base to overlook his heresies on such cultural hot buttons as abortion rights, seeks to win over the faithful by claiming the mantle of Hillary-Basher Club Champion. A tax credit for parents struggling to pay their children's college tuition? Matching funds for 401(k)s? Baby bonds?

Has Hillary Let Obama Back Into The Race?

Ben Smith highlights the back-and-forth today between the Obama and Clinton camps over an Obama op-ed in the Manchester Union-Leader. First, the key grafs in the Obama piece, which focuses mostly on that Lieberman-Kyl Iran amendment: I strongly differ with Sen. Hillary Clinton, who was the only Democratic presidential candidate to support this reckless amendment. We do need to tighten sanctions on the Iranian regime, particularly on Iran's Revolutionary Guard, which sponsors terrorism far beyond Iran's borders.

Has Hillary Let Obama Back Into The Race?

Ben Smith highlights the back-and-forth today between the Obama and Clinton camps over an Obama op-ed in the Manchester Union-Leader. First, the key grafs in the Obama piece, which focuses mostly on that Lieberman-Kyl Iran amendment: I strongly differ with Sen. Hillary Clinton, who was the only Democratic presidential candidate to support this reckless amendment. We do need to tighten sanctions on the Iranian regime, particularly on Iran's Revolutionary Guard, which sponsors terrorism far beyond Iran's borders.

The Inevitability Of Hillary

It's probably smart of John Edwards to answer questions about the inevitably of Hillary Clinton by recalling "the inevitably of Howard Dean"; but, assuming Edwards does actually believe what he's saying, I think it's wishful thinking. Dean, after all, was the unlikeliest (not to mention shakiest) of "frontrunners"--opposed by large swaths of the Democratic establishment and fueled by a relatively young and inexperienced campaign team. Hillary, by contrast, is the Democratic establishment and boasts a seasoned, almost robotically disciplined political operation.

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