Hillary Clinton

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.

Hillary And The F-word

Hillary Clinton's spokesmen have a favorite insult: "flagging campaign." Until now, I'd only seen it used--repeatedly--against John Edwards. But now the Clinton camp seems to be rubbing the new CW in Barack Obama's face as well. A short history of the phrase: Yesterday: "It's unfortunate that Senator Obama is resorting to the same old attack politics as his poll numbers start falling....

Ezra Klein Is Making Sense

He offers the best and most succinct take I've seen on just how brilliantly Hillary has played Obama: The most remarkable political triumph of this campaign was the Clinton campaign effectively defining Barack Obama's "new politics" as "not attacking Hillary Clinton by name." Obama, of course, could have defined the new politics however he wanted, from a focus on transformative policy to a willingness to call out the DC establishment. Instead, he let the Clinton camp define his message in a way advantageous to them.

The Clinton Taboo

How determined is the Obama campaign to avoid mentioning Hillary Clinton's name? Here's a passage from an email update sent around by the campaign this weekend: Specifically, on Tuesday, the fifth anniversary of Obama's forceful speech opposing the war in Iraq, a day on which another campaign reportedly wanted to gum-up the substantive coverage by releasing her fundraising totals, Obama dominated local press in Iowa and even managed to get stories in other early primary states on issues he was discussing on the trail.

Your Daily Dose Of Health Policy

Now that Hillary Clinton has followed John Edwards in endorsing an "individual mandate" model for universal health care, lots of people are asking questions about the model -- some good, some not so good. In Business Week, columnist Glen Whitman raises several objections. It's difficult to enforce a mandate that everybody buy insurance, he says; just look at how many people don't carry car insurance, which states supposedly require of all drivers.

The Dartmouth Debate

In the "spin room" after tonight's debate, Elizabeth Edwards suggested her husband offers Democrats a rare opportunity: the chance to nominate someone who is both the most progressive and the most electable candidate running. (At least among the plausible candidates.) It's an intriguing notion, one that would play well among the notoriously liberal and notoriously strategic-minded Democrats of Iowa. The only question is whether it's actually possible.


I'm far from immune to the widespread sense that Barack Obama is going to have to take on Hillary Clinton a lot more directly if he hopes to snatch the Democratic nomination from her, and I liked Noam's semi-tongue-in-cheek suggestion that Obama should swap campaign strategies with John Edwards. But I do think this kind of analysis tends to gloss over the salient fact that Barack Obama is a black man. It's all well and good for Edwards, a white Southerner, to appear riled up, confrontational, and even divisive, but it's far from clear that this is a luxury Obama can afford.

Dartmouth Debate Highlights

The anticipated fireworks between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton failed to ignite at last night's Democratic debate at Dartmouth, but the evening was not without its highlights. We've assembled clips from the night's most newsworthy moments here. Michael Crowley thought it memorable that "Tim Russert coldly punctured Edwards's [health care] balloon by reminding him that in 2004 he had opposed such a plan as unworkable--leaving Edwards looking like he'd seen a ghost" (at the beginning).

What's Evan Bayh Up To?

Chris Cillizza reports that Evan Bayh is set to endorse Hillary Clinton this afternoon. As Chris points it, Bayh's move is likely to ease him onto the Clinton vice-presidential short-list should she win the nomination. Probably the most frequent question I get when I talk to friends and family members about the presidential campaign is whether Clinton would choose Obama as her running mate if she were the nominee. To put it simply: This strikes me as completely ludicrous.