Losing it?

By STEVEN STARK  |  February 14, 2008

A third reason Clinton is suffering is because her campaign’s finances were mishandled — again, hardly a mark of presidential leadership. We may never know how much cash was flushed down the drain in Iowa, or how other resources were squandered, but it was considerable. To win a national campaign, you need to husband your resources and budget for the long haul — just in case. Clinton obviously never did. Her campaign is now limping into key post–Super Tuesday contests with a financial disadvantage, and she’s begging Obama to debate her virtually every week to give her free air time (a request he will undoubtedly deny).

Finally, the Clinton campaign underestimated the animus in the country against a female candidate — surprising since her gender is her calling card. Yes, Obama is going to carry the South overwhelmingly because of his hold on the African-American vote. But what’s been ignored is that, in many states in this region, he’s also doing well with the white community. That’s, in part, a tribute to his vote-getting ability, but it is undoubtedly also due to the profound and entrenched sexism in the South. Although pockets of that region still wave Confederate flags, animosity to a female presidential candidate is, on the whole, greater than it is to an African-American one. Had Hillary realized her chances of carrying most Southern states (Florida doesn’t count) were virtually zero, she might have run a very different type of campaign.

Clinton, of course, may still win. If she prevails in Ohio, Texas, and Pennsylvania, it’s hard to believe Democrats will nominate a candidate who failed to carry a single large state other than his own (Illinois). But both Obama and Clinton came into this campaign with huge question marks about their leadership and executive potential. So far, Obama has more than assuaged the doubts about himself. Clinton has only exacerbated them.

THE FIELD
REPUBLICANS
JOHN McCAIN
Odds: 1-15 | past week: 1-5
MIKE HUCKABEE
Odds: 30-1 | 12-1
MITT ROMNEY
Odds: withdrew
RON PAUL
Odds: no longer taking bets

DEMOCRATS
BARACK OBAMA
Odds: 6-7| past week: 2-1
HILLARY CLINTON
Odds: 7-6 | 1-2

On the Web
The Presidential Tote Board blog: http://www.thephoenix.com/toteboard

< prev  1  |  2  | 
  Topics: Stark Ravings , Mitt Romney, Barack Obama, Election Campaigns,  More more >
| More


Most Popular
ARTICLES BY STEVEN STARK
Share this entry with Delicious
  •   MAPPING OUT THE NEW YEAR'S POLITICAL LANDSCAPE  |  December 29, 2010
    MAPPING OUT THE NEW YEAR'S POLITICAL LANDSCAPE
  •   DEMOCRATS AGAINST OBAMA  |  November 03, 2010
    Now that the midterm wipeout has concluded, analysts are already sizing up the GOP challengers to a weakened Barack Obama. Not only that: some Democratic party elders are considering the once-unthinkable scenario of a debilitating challenge to Barack Obama from inside his party.
  •   THE INDEPENDENT HERD  |  October 06, 2010
    The big news in this election cycle is the rise of the Tea Party. Fair enough. But passing under the radar is an accompanying development that could have even more far-reaching consequences — the rise of an emboldened third force in our politics.
  •   THE AMERICAN IDOL PARTY  |  September 23, 2010
    Sarah Palin and Christine O'Donnell might not turn out to be good candidates, but they make great television.
  •   HAS OBAMA PEAKED? YES, HE HAS  |  November 12, 2009
    To listen to some pundits, Barack Obama's public image began taking a serious beating when the off-year election returns came in a week ago. Or maybe it was the undeserved Nobel Prize, his approach to the war in Afghanistan, or when he revved up his pursuit of national health-care reform.

 See all articles by: STEVEN STARK