Hillary Clinton

Air Spin One
January 04, 2008

Hours after Hillary Clinton finished a stunning third in the Iowa caucuses, her press corps flew by charter jet directly to the campaign’s next battleground: Manchester, New Hampshire. For the duration of the two and a half hour flight, the aisles were jammed up as a cadre of Clintonites tirelessly spun a press corps whose members now believe they’re witnessing one of the great political collapses in modern history.

Clinton V. Obama On Swing Voters, Epilogue
January 03, 2008

OK, this is my last word on the great swing voter debate, which I inadvertently started yesterday.  Actually, it's not so much my word as John Judis' word, as published in the online pages of the Guardian.  In a new article, he and frequent collaborator Ruy Teixeira break down the independent vote. It's worth reading in full, but this paragraph--about the preferences of independent voters in New Hampshire -- really caught my attention: Even when Hillary Clinton was well ahead in the polls, these voters preferred Barack Obama.

Why Hillary Could Win Swing Voters
January 02, 2008

My colleague Jonathan Chait suggests, gently, that I am off my rocker for even suggesting that Hillary Clinton might have more appeal to swing voters than Barack Obama.  While I’m hesitant to engage Jon over this – my primary purpose in writing that item was to show why Obama’s support among independents was impressive, regardless of what actually happens on caucus night – I just can’t resist the opportunity to rekindle our little quadrennial tradition.  (Loyal readers may remember that Jon and I, who agree on virtually everything in politics, went a few rounds over Howard Dean in 2004.)   

Obama's Soft Paternalism
January 02, 2008

David Leonhardt has a very good piece in today's New York Times taking a look at the (relatively minor) philosophical differences between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama on economic issues. Key takeaway: The easiest way to describe Senator Clinton’s philosophy is to say that she believes in the promise of narrowly tailored government policies, like focused tax cuts. She has more faith that government can do what it sets out to do, which is a traditionally liberal view. Yet she also subscribes to the conservative idea that people respond rationally to financial incentives.

Clinton The Independent Favorite? Pshaw.
January 02, 2008

  I think the most interesting news about the Des Moines Register poll is that it shows, again, how much more appeal Barack Obama has with swing voters than does Hillary Clinton. Indeed, all sides now seem to agree that the outcome of the caucus will depend on how many independent or Republican voters, who strongly favor Obama, will actually caucus. It's reminiscent of the 2000 Republican primary contest between John McCain, who had enormous crossover appeal, and George W. Bush, the favorite of party regulars.

What That Register Poll Really Says (or Doesn't Say)
January 02, 2008

For those who spent the past 36 hours celebrating (and recovering) rather than obsessing over presidential politics, the big news over New Year's was the final Des Moines Register poll.  Released just hours before the end of 2007, it showed Barack Obama increasing his lead in Iowa over fellow Democrats Hillary Clinton and John Edwards. But even before theRegister's morning edition began hitting doorsteps, both the Clinton and Edwards campaigns had put out their counter-spin.

Clinton Jedi Mind Tricks On Pakistan
January 01, 2008

The breaking news of Hillary Clinton’s unrepentant stumbles on the subject of Pakistan hasn't shocked me. It's an old story. During interviews in the aftermath of Benazir Bhutto’s killing Thursday, Clinton had suggested she was a familiar hand at Pakistani politics and a close acquaintance of Bhutto (which is apparently due more to Bhutto’s outreach in Washington than to HRC’s globetrotting). In the process, she got a few details of her friend’s life wrong—the number of children, the manner of her father’s death—but the worst was yet to come.

Iowan Of The Day
January 01, 2008

Meet Jo Zunkel, a resident of rural Ogden who showed up to see Hillary Clinton at Iowa State University in Ames this morning. Jo is an archetypal Hillary supporter--a woman in her sixties who backs Clinton without reservations and loves the idea of a strong and brave woman in the White House. "She's very intelligent. We need somebody with brains," Zunkel told me, adding that she is totally commited to caucusing Thursday night.

Sunday Primetime
December 30, 2007

From time to time, we ask New York drama critic Jeremy McCarter to assess the theater of politics. Here's his take on some candidate appearances on this weekend's Sunday morning talk shows: Let the screenwriters keep striking. Without their help, the Sunday talk shows go on yielding tense plots and subplots, improbable characters in twisty relationships, and bold strokes of comedy. Some of them are even intentional. "Great to be here," said Hillary Clinton as she walked onto the set of This Week with George Stephanopoulos. Is "great" the word she wants there?

Quote Of The Day: Chris Rock
December 28, 2007

From the NYT: “I love Hillary Clinton, but to me she is the Democratic version of George Bush: someone who is running, and the only reason you know who this person is is because of their name.” --Ben Wasserstein (Illustration: NYT/Sean McCabe)