Brummett throws out the usual straw men about the evil Hillary Clinton in the course of mulling the prospects of a Democratic convention whose outcome isn’t resolved in advance by primaries and caucuses.
My thoughts: A clear victory in pledged delegates, particularly if won in states constituting a majority of electoral votes and preferably also representing a a clear majority of primary votes cast, should be given high meaning by the unpledged super delegates when they vote. But a razor-thin margin that doesn’t include any delegates from Michigan or Florida? No.
There was no contest in Michigan and no campaigning in Florida, but hundreds of thousands voted in Florida and expressed a clear preference. It’s a key, maybe the key, state in the U.S. The Democratic Party may choose to stick to its rule and deny its delegates a vote. But if it does, then the super delegates must be allowed to cast ballots as they choose, not according to a special Obama rule that would say even a one-vote margin among hundreds of pledged delegates should be construed as constituting the will of the party. And they’d be right to take Florida and Michigan into their individual calculations, along with the pledged delegate margin.
I do think it is possible that Obama’s gains from a month of victories before going to states where Clinton is presumed to have strength could create sufficient momentum for him to make the situation far clearer than it now appears. It’s down to Ohio and Texas, basically.
Oh, and by the way, Obama has also played the race card. That is, he’s taken any number of steps aimed at appealing to specific racial segments. This is nothing but smart politics. Everyone does it. Not just Clintons. But it is only scheming and devious when Clintons do it.
Greg Sargent chimes in on my last point:
When it comes to the Clintons, many pundits have simply stopped requiring themselves to adhere to the most basic evidentiary standards. It has become acceptable, even normal, to say whatever the hell you want about the Clintons, and if you insist on anything approaching real evidence, you’re just a party-pooper. The “Clinton rules” governing punditry about them are that there are no rules. Yep — Krugman was talking about his own colleagues.
Update: Over at The Atlantic, Clive Crook addresses the Billary race-card allegations with a great deal of much-needed common sense.