Sunday, July 20, 2008

As The Primary Continues...Sorta

Huffington Post carried a story today about Hillary Being Vetted which is a topic I care just enough about to read the article, just. The piece I'm interested in is the Comments section, not because I expect to see anything particularly new or especially intelligent written there, the prevailing sentiment is what interests me. (if the topic were not Hillary, I might expect to find something intelligent there) The stand-out piece is that six hours after it was posted there are 1268 comments with 219 pending. A rough guess would be 5:1 'no to Hillary,' there is naturally the mix of rehashing the Primary campaign and some slanders against Obama and multiple comments from individuals. All that said, Hillary isn't going away as a net topic. You'd noticed that without my 'news flash?'

A lot of people voted for Hillary and the election was actually fairly close - revisiting history with what ifs and coulda's/shoulda's is silly - it was pretty close. The intensity remaining is what interests me and it isn't all that much about Obama or the current McCain/Obama battle, it seems to be Hillary. There are the Hilloons like "No Quarter," Larry Johnson's home of craziness and anti-Obama stupidity - Obama shoots some hoops and Taliban execute two women and NoIQ blames Obama... But what counts isn't the nutcases, it is the heat Hillary still stirs. I, personally, doubt that Hillary will be on the ticket and wouldn't like to see her there. My strategic doubts have to do with this intensity, it is high on the Democratic side, but as a vote issue it is huge on the Republican side. While there certainly is a rabid anti-Obama fringe on the Republican side it is small potatoes compared to the anti-Hillary feelings. McCain has an interest problem of large consequence, he is at less than half of Obama's very favorable polling, anything that generates greater intensity for McCain could produce problems, or at least unnecessary efforts. While Hillary's appearance on the ticket would produce less satisfaction on my part it would not affect my vote or willingness to help the ticket. At this point I am not satisfied that any hypothetical vote gain by her presence would undo the damage from Republican intensity.

While in Oregon it only takes a few minutes to fill out the ballot and a stamp or stop by a drop box; most states require some actual effort to vote. The impetus to make that effort is largely driven by satisfaction with a candidate and the ticket...or dedicated opposition. These are serious considerations and would be ignored by the Obama campaign with risk. It is hard to see where a high risk marginal return Hillary makes the cut.

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