When I tuned in and start following as the results were tallied in last night's Democratic primary processes, I found myself less than surprised. Early in the evening, Barack Obama had a humongous lead in North Carolina (where he has consistently dominated in the polls) and Hillary Clinton had a single-digit lead in Indiana (where she has led polls).
Yet, as the night went on, Clinton's lead in Indiana slowly began to shrink. From eight percent, to six percent, to three percent. By the end of the night, it actually appeared that Obama might pull off a major upset and take Indiana, but in the end he fell short by about 1.5 percent of the total vote.
Meanwhile, Obama crushed Clinton in NC. Several weeks ago, polls showed him with a nearly 25 percent lead in North Carolina, a state where the electorate demographics heavily favor him, but in recent days polls have shown that lead shrinking into the single-digits. Nevertheless, Obama defeated Clinton by about 16 percent, and in doing so, he effectively erased the gains she made with her victory in Pennsylvania.
It was a great night for Obama, and one that allows him to regain any "momentum" that he was thought to have lost over the past month or two. It's time for Hillary to drop out of this race. She has a 147-delegate deficit which she stands almost no chance whatsoever of erasing, and at this point she's only wasting her money and Obama's time/effort (which could be spent focusing on John McCain) by remaining in the race.
The arguments being made by Clinton's campaign and her supporters are nothing short of ridiculous. They cherry-pick election and poll results to make her case. "She wins the big states!" ... "She leads McCain in the polls in battleground states!" ... "She wouldn't be getting spanked so bad if Florida and Michigan were counted!"
Yeah, sorry to all those of you in the 32 states which have voted Obama (many in landslide fashion), your votes don't matter. Hillary should win because she's getting the majority of the votes in some of the larger states. That's democracy at its finest folks. Obama is winning BY THE RULES. Everything else is irrelevant. The rules dictate that the candidate with the most delegates is the winner, and Obama has a substantial delegate lead which will not dissipate. Michigan and Florida chose to break the rules (a set of rules which were supported by Clinton, by the way), so their votes aren't counted. It's that simple.
Here is an important point that seems like it's getting overlooked by all these rabid Hillary supporters who claim she is the most electable candidate. I think Clinton has clearly proven during this process is that she is a shitty campaigner. She entered this race as a clear favorite, but she has been completely overmatched by a young and inexperienced senator out of Illinois. Obama's campaign has out-earned Clinton's, and he's shown an impressive ability to overcome adversity (we've been hearing nothing but Rev. Jeremiah Wright for the past few weeks, yet look how much effect that had on his performance last night). I think people have really grown tired of the Clintons' "whatever it takes" philosophy -- which some have gone so far as to label "lying and cheating." I don't trust her ability to effectively campaign against McCain in the general election when she has been so thoroughly outperformed by Obama in the primaries.
Clinton can't win, and there's no reason for her to stay in this race. Time to bow out.