Regarding the 2008 presidential election, here’s a synopsis of how the media/Democrats got to where they’re at:
1. Delegate Dance
Clinton won most of the large-population states: California, Pennsylvania, Ohio, New York, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Arizona, Indiana. She also won the popular vote in Texas. The Democrats, however, allocate their pledged delegates proportionally. With the sole exception of Nevada, Obama won all the small-state caucuses, often by 2-1 margins. Those victories combined with high-margin wins in the deep South and among most of the more affluent states created a scenario that would have been impossible if the Democrats used a delegate-allocation system that tracks the general election.
2. Florida and Michigan
No analysis of the Democrats’ delegate denouement would be complete without mention of Florida and Michigan.
Instead of accepting those early primaries and then penalizing those states half their delegates — as the GOP did — the Democrats threw out the political babies with the bath water. The result is a fiasco that still largely is unresolved to this day.
3. Race — and Gender, Age, Income, and Social Status
Conservative political junkies for decades have known that Democrats bitterly are divided by race. What was not quite as obvious, however, at least not until this year, was that they’re also bitterly divided by gender, age, income and social status.
Women voted for Clinton. Men voted for Obama. Kids between 18 and 24 voted overwhelmingly for Obama. Men and women age 50 and over overwhelmingly supported Clinton. At the very highest levels of earnings and income they voted for Obama. The middle and working classes voted for Clinton.
4. The Media
In perhaps the greatest political irony since raTHergate, Hillary Clinton for all practical purposes morphed into a Republican in the eyes of the MSM media.
The national media so relentlessly and aggressively campaigned for Obama, and against Clinton, there were times at which you simply had to laugh out loud at their duplicity. Not that anyone should feel sorry for Clinton, however. Quite the contrary. There is that old adage involving proverbial swords and living and dying. Stated another way: poetic justice can be quite poetic.
Labor unions this election season were as confused as liberal newspaper editors and conservative talk radio hosts.
Union leadership could not decide between the two candidates. Generally speaking the rank-and-file of the female-dominated unions (nurses, public-sector education) supported Clinton, whereas members of the male-dominated unions (Teamsters, police and firefighters) supported Obama. In some cases, however, most notably concerning Nevada’s service workers, not only was there a schism between union bosses and dues payers but even the rank-and-file within the same union split among itself. Largely along lines — you guessed it — of race and income and social status.
6. The Flip Side of the Bradley Effect
In perhaps the greatest political irony since the media began campaigning against a Clinton, the seeds of the Democrats’ long-standing double standard on race have bloomed.
Simply put, there are a lot of guilty liberal whites out there who have decided to back Obama. Many of them have an interesting and quite relevant title: superdelegates. Blacks, on the other hand, have no qualms supporting Obama, even if they represent Districts in which Clinton prevailed by landslide margins.
The political party which decided that blacks and whites should be treated differently — as a systemic matter of government — now are reaping what they’ve sown. Geraldine Ferraro (of all people) will be proven spot-on correct: If Obama gets the nomination it largely will be because of his race, certainly not because of credentials or popular mandate.
Obama raised mind-numbing sums of money, much of it in $50-$100 increments from young students and recent graduates. In essence the Obama money machine was akin to Howard Dean’s, circa late-2003 to early-2004, but multiplied and magnified three-fold.
Clinton, however, not only could not keep up in the fundraising game she actually ran out of money. That’s an astonishing outcome for those who remember the Clinton machine in the 1990’s. The Clintons invented the concept of perma-fundraising. Bill Clinton’s entire presidency was in large part a gigantic fundraising infomercial. Yet the well ran dry for Hillary months before the end of the primary season.
Money is not be the only thing in politics; McCain’s easy victory is Exhibit A. It sure doesn’t hurt, however, to possess lots of it.