My personal musings about anything that gets on my radar screen--heavily dominated by politics.


Obama Wins a Pyrrhic Victory 

You have to hand it to the Clintons: they KNOW how to play the game.

Send out a bunch of underlings to "suggest" racial themes for the week leading up to the primary; deploy Bill because of his connections to the black community; and scale back the effort of the candidate in a state that she probably knew two weeks ago that she was going to lose.

In effect, concede the battle, but force the story to be about the battleground, not the candidates.

So Obama comes away with a stunning 55-28 victory, but is forever saddled with the weight of having won a "black" victory--he is now the "black" candidate, and, regardless of the wonderful lofty rhetoric, will probably not be able to shed the limiting label the Clintons pinned on him this week.

This is how the game is played, folks. And nobody does it as well as the Clintons. Who among the Republicans is capable of playing this game, or managing to stay out of it? That remains to be seen.

But whoever "wins" the job of taking these two on had better be ready for a street fight.

ADDENDUM: I was going to add that the best thing the Republicans could do to try to either capitalize on this or to neutralize this would be to nominate Michael Steele as the Veep. But, on further review, I've decided that that's just one little battlefield. The Clintons will play this game on more than just race, so to try to innoculate against that is limited.

This is more about tactics. Either the candidate has to be a pit bull--and both McCain and Giuliani have that shot in their bags--or the candidate has to be genial--Romney's strong suit--while bringing in a wartime consigliere (a la Cheney) to be Veep. In either case, it is absolutely necessary that somebody on the ticket have the disposition and the skills to counterpunch effectively.

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