Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Wrong For 2008, Premature For 2016

There is no blog more identified with progressivism than Daily Kos.  Its readership is enormous, and it has extraordinary writers.

There must be extraordinary bloggers at Daily Kos- because its success couldn't possibly be because of its founder and proprietor, the already legendary Markos Moulitsas Huizenga. Today he writes

With Quinnipiac the latest to show Hillary Clinton romping toward the White House, it's becoming increasingly clear that she would face an easier path to the White House than anyone since Eisenhower, and maybe even since Thomas Jefferson.

As I note in greater detail below the fold, there is little room for an insurgent primary candidate (and the rest of the shaping field lacks any heft), while her general election numbers are downright gaudy. The big question is less about whether she can win, and more about whether she wants to pull the trigger and make history.

If she does, Dems are virtually guaranteed the White House for another eight years, and with that, at least one Supreme Court seat (Scalia would be 88 by the end of her second term). How could she refuse that? So meet me below the fold to see how she gets there.

It's silly enough to declare victory for a presidential candidate more than three years ahead of the next election, perhaps even more so when her party occupies the White House.  Reaction of the electorate to the policies President Obama pursues the next 3-4 years, as well as its perception in fall 2016 of the state of the country (much of which is beyond a president's control) will have a far greater impact on the 2016 presidential election than will polls which currently show Clinton routing the field.

Kos give a nodding reference to his full-throated criticism of the New York Senator in 2008, stating merely "Clinton's post-primary actions have defused much of the hostility she had engendered (including from me)."

Let's revisit a little of that hostility, shall we?  In March, 2008, Moulitsas argued that Clinton could capture the nomination only by staging torching the party:

Yet a coup by super delegate would sunder the party in civil war.

Clinton knows this, it's her only path to victory, and she doesn't care. She is willing -- nay,eager to split the party apart in her mad pursuit of power.

If the situations were reversed, and Obama was lagging in the delegates, popular vote, states won, money raised, and every other reasonable measure, then I'd feel the same way about Obama. (I pulled the plug early on Dean in 2004.) But that's not the case.

It is Clinton, with no reasonable chance of victory, who is fomenting civil war in order to overturn the will of the Democratic electorate. As such, as far as I'm concerned, she doesn't deserve "fairness" on this site. All sexist attacks will be dealt with -- those will never be acceptable. But otherwise, Clinton has set an inevitably divisive course and must be dealt with appropriately.

To reiterate, she cannot win without overturning the will of the national Democratic electorate and fomenting civil war, and she doesn't care.

Now, the individual who was "so divisive, she is actually working to split her own party" and who was "planning for more drastic, destructive and debilitating civil war" has "about as easy a path to the White House as anyone can ever have. It's now up to Clinton to decide whether she's really finished with public life, or whether she'll cap her storied career with one more dramatic bang."

Moulitsas really hasn't changed, merely transferring his devotion and blind allegiance from one person to another, from 2008's flavor of the month to 2013's flavor of the month.    He concedes that there is "one glaring black mark on Clinton's resume—her continued support for the surveillance state."  But he adds "Her positions on civil liberties appear to line up with those of Obama," to which there is little organized opposition.

President Obama apparently realized there would be little blowback from policies extending the national security state which, if exercised by a Republican (or even another Democratic) President, would have provoked outrage. But the President- or, rather, Democrats running for elective office in the future- may not be so lucky when he ramps up his thrust for the Grand Bargain.  Reuters reported last week

President Barack Obama, unable to persuade Republicans to accept higher taxes, is attempting to cobble together what he calls a "common-sense caucus" among lawmakers to help resolve U.S. budget woes and push his legislative agenda.

On Monday and in recent days, Obama has made individual phone calls to a number of senators in a search for common ground on $85 billion in budget cuts that went into effect last week, as well as his top priorities like deficit reduction, gun control and an overhaul of U.S. immigration laws.

Gene Sperling, the White House senior economic official, said on the CNN program "State of the Union" on Sunday that Obama was contacting to lawmakers to talk about compromises that could include reforms to both the tax code and entitlement programs, which include Social Security retirement benefits and Medicare healthcare for the elderly and disabled.

Five years ago, Moulitsas supported Obama, who had narcissistically promised "we are the ones we've been waiting for,"  over Hillary Clinton.  The seer who called Sarah Palin "a genius pick" by John McCain now has decided to throw his bad judgement behind Hillary Clinton.   "Women, who dominate the Democratic Party electorate," he writes, "are rightfully ready for their turn with history."

That's the problem with falling in love with politicians; it may be done for all the wrong reasons.   Barack Obama was going to "make history"- and he still might, unless Republicans are too stubborn to accept the President's effort to weaken Social Security and Medicare, the signature initiatives of the Democratic Party.  These days, Markos Moulitsas has a thing for Hillary Clinton because, for some, the right policy pales in significance to the right genetics.

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