2.08.2008

SER's prediction from a month ago

"Clinton manages to win a few big states on Feb. 5, but Obama clearly has the most popular support. Due to the weird rules of delegate allocation, however, Clinton's stash of superdelegates means she might win on a technicality. (Note: I have no idea what I'm talking about. If you want more details on the superdelegate thing, consult the Internets.) A legal tangle reminiscent of Bush/Gore 2000 takes place in the primary season. By November, everyone is so exhausted by it all that they forget to vote."

Um... I'm sorry, but do you have any stock tips?

12 comments:

Grendel said...

cj, I thought it better to edit than explain...

Trevor Jackson said...

I'm always amazed at the Democrats ability to screw things up for themselves, but contradicting the will of the popular primary vote and awarding the nomination via superdelegate--to either HC or BO--would be an act levels of stupidity above anything they've ever done.

My god, the rioting in Denver would make Chicago 1968 look like a game of hacky-sack at a Dead show.

Also: Kudos on the prediction. I hope you're only half right, though.

cj said...

Another potential problem: Even if the superdelegates decide to follow the choice of the elected delegates, the losing candidate may still be able to argue that he or she won the actual popular vote. I just calculated the popular vote so far (based on MSNBC's site), and here's what I found:

Obama: 7,830,574
Clinton: 7,735,905

I didn't count Florida or Michigan, since we don't know how many votes Obama might have gotten there if he, like Clinton, had broken his promise not to compete there. (Sorry, a little editorializing creeping in here.) I also didn't include Iowa or American Samoa, since no popular vote totals are available for those two caucuses.

You can be sure, though, that Clinton would argue that she's ahead in popular vote, because of Florida and Michigan. If she makes that argument and then loses the convention, she will successfully have planted the notion that Obama is not the legitimate winner. Which would be another fine gift of the Clinton campaign to the party.

Currently the MSNBC site has Obama ahead among elected delegates, 861-855. So far, then, the popular vote and elected delegate totals arguably come out the same way. I hope that continues . . .

Trevor Jackson said...

There's no way Clinton can argue for Michigan's vote totals to be counted. Obama wasn't even on the ballot because the candidates and the party all agreed that they shouldn't count. (Neither was Edwards on the ballot, for that matter. But Kucinich was!)

Florida is trickier. Neither Obama nor Clinton "campaigned" there, though both attended fund-raisers in Florida that technically weren't considered campaign events. Obama, the Clinton team argued, DID campaign there when he bought national ad time a few days before the primary that couldn't exclude Florida in its airings. Moreover, both campaigns had "independent" movements actively campaigning for the candidates.

Stupid goddamn Florida. Huge turnout there for delegates that shouldn't count in a state the Democrats need to win in the general election. Don't count their delegates and they might stay home in November. Do count their delegates and if they prove decisive for Clinton, risk the stay-home effect from Obama supporters.

Grendel said...

I think whoever ends up with the most pledged delegates picked up through primaries and caucuses will be the nominee. Everyone is well aware of what it would look like if any other scenario played out, and the NYT story this morning about SD's "wavering" and likely to "go with the flow" is spot on, I think.

Michigan is looking into holding a closed caucus before the convention, but Florida is "laughing" that off. Enough mischief with Florida already. They should fit a huge condom onto that state and leave it on until 2012. See how they like that.

Grendel said...

Here's a Fun Fact: Clinton's pledged delegate lead in Florida's stunt election is 38 delegates. That's it. It's no tsunami to be afraid of. It still shouldn't and won't count, but even if it did...

Grendel said...

Check out this profile of Jon Favreau, Obama's 26-year-old speechwriter.

Brando said...

Do not doubt the prognostication of SER. If only I had asked her about the Super Bowl before I bet my house on the Patriots!

Grendel said...

Comparing this video to this one says it all about the primary, and this one says it all about November.

Trevor Jackson said...

Re the above three videos, if I can be permitted a bit of foul-mouthed self-satisfaction:

I fucking love my generation.

Grendel said...

Me too.

Here is a fairly in-depth look at the early Obama, from 1995, in the Chicago Reader. It's impressive how consistent he has been in his goals and articulation.

Grendel said...

Another fine profile of the O-man.