Wednesday, March 5, 2008

[Updated 3/5 PM] Junior-Super Tuesday blues!

Senator Clinton did what she had to - win Ohio by a fair margin (~12%), and Texas by a smaller margin. She might have chipped away slightly at Senator Obama's delegate lead.

The Clinton campaign accused the Obama campaign of disenfranchising caucus-goers in Texas. However, I recall reading much before today that the caucus process would likely be chaotic - that the first person to show up at the caucus center could be the precinct chair, and effectively control the caucus. I will post a link when I find it. Detailed accusations are here.

Possible factors for these accusations (if they aren't true) - the Clinton campaign assumes Senator Obama will win the caucus portion of the Texas Two-Step, so these accusations degrade that win; and the Clinton campaign does not have enough ground support to man the >8000 caucus sites, particularly in Obama-strongholds (which is where the accusations are being made). In the latter case, if a Clinton volunteer doesn't show up in time, naturally an Obama-volunteer would end up being the precinct chair. As for the former, recall that Clinton surrogates sued to get rid of the "at-large" caucus sites in the casinos on the Las Vegas Strip during the Nevada caucuses, right after the biggest union there endorsed Senator Obama. Of course, given the apparently chaotic nature of the Texas caucuses, it is difficult to know if the latest accusations are true.

In other (non-)news, Senator Obama continues to fight ignorance about his religion and ancestry, in addition to racial prejudice. Writing from El Paso, TX, Meghan O'Rourke (a self-admitted Hillary-defender) reports that a couple of young women at a bar thought Senator Obama was a secret agent of Islam. Again, another Meghan O'Rourke report mentions a Republican who thinks that " "Osama—Osama Bin Laden" fellow had some good ideas: for example, about how CEOs shouldn't make in 10 minutes what workers make in a year..." [UPDATE/NEW LINK] Here is a Clinton supporter sporting a T-shirt saying "Osama for Obama." Finally, a report in The Nation quotes Clinton supporters in Ohio saying they wouldn't support "the nigger."

Earlier, I have written about how someone can be a Obama-supporter and still not be a MCP. Hopefully these individuals ignorant about, and/or prejudiced against, Senator Obama are a minor fraction of the Clinton-following. If, however, that is the support propelling Senator Clinton to the nomination... am I glad to have, thus far, lived (in the USA) in relatively-enlightened places like good university campuses and, of course, Boulder. Not to mention the Democratic Party's loss at denying a fine person like Senator Obama a shot at the Presidency just because he's a Black person with a weird name.

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