Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The 2008 Denver DNC: Rise of the Machines?

Denver is in full swing as preparations are being made for the upcoming Democratic National Convention, an event that promises to have all the drama and intrigue of Terminator, Othello and Macbeth rolled into one neat package.
The question "Is it dead, yet?" seems to be floating around Democratic circles in regards to the Hillary Clinton campaign. With grass roots organizations such as PUMA and others around, it seems that there is still life in the Clinton machine, something that creates a very dangerous political situation for the presumed nominee for the DNC, Barrack Obama.

History has shown time and again that you can't turn your back on the Clinton machine, nor can you count it out of the game until the game is officially over and team Clinton has been left on the sidelines watching someone else sprint to victory. Thus seems to be the case for the Denver convention, as there is discussion of a brewing coup being planned by Clinton supporters that will take place on the floor of the convention.

As of July 31, the Democratic National Convention was still in need of one-fourth of the estimated cost of the Denver convention – amounting to 10 million of the $40 million.

Moreover, Washington Examiner political columnist Tony Campbell explains in detail why this national convention could be absolutely explosive:

"I talked to a Clinton delegate here in Maryland. He told me they have been instructed to vote for Hillary (for president) on the first ballot. To make things more interesting, there is a movement to swing 160 delegates from Obama to Clinton. If that happens, Clinton could re-establish her campaign and face John McCain in the fall."

And further:

"The group P.U.M.A. (for Public Unity My A--) claims that 15 delegates have switched from Obama to Clinton in July. There is still the possibility of a floor convention vote to fully seat the delegations from Michigan and Florida – which would benefit Senator Clinton.

Given the mood and atmosphere surrounding the Clinton "defeat" by Obama in the primaries, in which both Florida and Michigan were stripped of their delegates initially, the issues surrounding Obama both in his relationships with controversial figures and the funding he's been receiving from Middle Eastern backers, the relentless work by Hillary supporters in trying to make sure that the message is clearly delivered that they are NOT happy with the Democratic National Party for what they see as having lauded Obama by virtue of race over substance, the new allegations that Obama is "selling" tickets to his planned and potential acceptance speech, among other issues, the party is clearly not moving forward in a united front toward the November elections. Clinton supporters, to be sure, are anything but fully behind the potential nomination of Obama:

A massive e-mail and Internet campaign is under way aimed at derailing the nomination of Barack Obama and making Hillary Clinton the party’s standard bearer next week at the Democratic National Convention in Denver.

“It’s downright nasty,” said Memphis, Tenn., superdelegate and city council member Myron Lowery, who has shared dozens of the messages he’s received with The (Memphis) Commercial Appeal newspaper.

“I think it’s divisive for the ‘Support Hillary’ campaign to continue at this time. She made the decision to fully support Mr. Obama,” said Lowery, who initially supported Clinton but later switched his allegiance to Obama. “I don’t know why they’re not taking their cue from Hillary and falling in line.”

But is that really the cue that Hillary is sending forth? Lowery thinks so, but with statements made by the Senator from New York and former First Lady to the effect that her supporters should be heard at the convention, is she truly putting one hundred percent effort behind Obama? Given the "terminatrix" image that some pundits have created around Hillary, I somehow can't imagine her standing over Obama and saying "Come with me if you want to live." I think, personally, she would be more inclined to use the "I'll be back" line made famous during the FIRST movie. This concept becomes more apparent with the news that Senator Clinton's brother and chief campaign backers have met with McCain a top McCain surrogate in Phoenix, Arizona, raising speculations as to what sort of topics where discussed and where the Clinton support will truly rest come the conclusion of the convention.

With the Democratic National Convention less than a week away, the gathering raises questions about the support Illinois Sen. Barack Obama can expect from former local supporters of Mrs. Clinton, who dominated at the polls in the Northeast in the April primary election. Mrs. Clinton won 74 percent of Lackawanna County Democrats to Mr. Obama’s 26 percent.

Ms. Fiorina’s daylong local visit, part of a two-day bus tour of the state, was aimed at talking disenchanted former supporters of Mrs. Clinton into supporting Mr. McCain. The private gathering was not a fundraiser.

“I think there’s going to be a groundswell of support for McCain,” said Lackawanna County District Attorney Andy Jarbola, a Republican and one of the people who attended. “I think a lot of Hillary supporters are going to be for McCain.”

Neither the Obama camp nor members of team Clinton have been available for comment, and Obama, once enjoying a more comfortable lead in the polls, has recently seen that lead slipping as McCain, a former fighter pilot, has begun to come in on him from behind, a position the Senator from Arizona has stated in the past that he feels very comfortable being in.

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man


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