Beyond the spin

By PETER KADZIS  |  May 14, 2008

Power people tend to do what they must to win — subject, of course, to the dynamics of their relative power grids. Clinton’s husband, then–Arkansas governor Bill, asked his state to release him from his 1990 pledge not to seek the presidency before his term was up. We all know how that one turned out.

Obama’s team out-thought Clinton’s, plotting a strategy that won him an early lead that Obama has managed to hold onto, narrowly but with tenacity. Clinton, who just five months ago was the hands-down favorite of party insiders and political observers (myself included), has been working with spirit to try to change political reality. She is doing a hell of a job, but it does not look as if the equation is going to yield the result she desires. In the process, however, Clinton has not only resuscitated herself, she has made older white women into an important voting block that will be a factor in November’s election. Expect Clinton to continue fighting for the next three weeks.

This will be a dangerous time for Obama. Oregon appears to be the only slam dunk in his cards. Clinton, meanwhile, will be strengthening her already formidable position as a force to be reckoned with by the Democratic Party and the Obama campaign.

Obscured, but not lost amid the reports of Clinton’s victory, is the news that a Democrat won in a special congressional election in Mississippi, a traditional Republican stronghold. Come November, Obama’s strength may have more to do with Republican weakness than his acumen. Clinton, a power person if there ever was one, most likely knows this. In the meantime, she will soldier on and hope for something unimaginable to alter the grid.

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