Wednesday, February 28, 2007


Brother, Here For Art Thou

Well, well.

It looks like a clear winner emerged from that David Geffen-initiated Obama-Clinton dust up. Based on this new Washington Post poll, it is that certain ethnic candidate from Illinois. At least in terms of blacks, Obama has surged (so to speak) past Hillary.

I don't think that is simply a sudden "Oh, wow, he really is black" moment from African Americans for this switch (thought that may be a factor). Last week's war of words shine some intense light momentarily on the race.

The added light accrued to Obama's benefit, because he's the new kid on the block. Furthermore, the greater attention makes more people aware of his clear anti-Iraq war views -- and Hillary's more complicated position. It happens that African-Americans have been the most solidly anti-Iraq electoral group for some time.

Now, they have a candidate with whom they can coalesce their views.

The anti-war element in the country may also be a factor in McCain's losing support to Rudy Giuliani among Republicans. While the former New York mayor supports the war, McCain has attached himself to George W. Bush -- particularly with respect to the surge -- to such an extent that the war has now become "his." Yes, McCain has many problems with respect to the GOP base, but Iraq remains the predominant issue. And the news that McCain did make last week was all about the war: He went after Rumsfeld; Cheney went after him for going after Rumsfeld, etc. And Giuliani's lead increased: This suggests that Republican electorate is sick of the war as well, but want to vote for a clear, authoritative leader: Right now, that seems to be Rudy.

Both McCain and Hillary are losing support to candidates who have no fingerprints on either the authorization or strategic implementation of the Iraq war.

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