For anyone who thought that she was going away after her clock-cleaning in North Carolina and a race in Indiana that was way closer than anyone thought it would be, you’ve obviously misunderestimated the woman.
Hillary is still here, and shows no hint of going away. The Clintons took the stage in Indiana Tuesday night looking about as happy and genuine as they did when they were walking to the helicopter on the White House lawn on August 19, 1998, after Bill had just copped to getting his freak on with a 22-year-old intern from Oregon in his White House office. There was a hint that Reality might finally be standing outside in its robe and polishing its scythe, and they might finally grudgingly invite him in.
I was incredulous, as I wrote here, and I was right. This is a woman who, with Bill, has endured more near-death experiences than Keith Richards. She can walk into an emergency room with a hole the size of a dinner plate in her stomach and still have no doubt she’ll be able to make her 8:00 AM racquetball game the next morning. The Clintons have a mortality as enduring as the radiation contaminating Chernobyl. All of us, the entire human race, will never live long enough to see them die.
When Hillary graduated from Wellesley in 1969, more than one person commented during her commencement speech that “you’re seeing a future President of the United States,” and she has no doubt believed that ever since. This is a hard thing to give up, and being a Clinton, she will always believe that, no matter how dark the odds look, there is still a chance up to the moment where St. Peter notes her on his clipboard and flips through her file and notes, “Boy, you really were some kind of raging, duplicitious bitch when you were running against Barack Obama way back when,” that she’ll live to fight another day and the White House will be hers.
As no less an authority as her puzzlingly and increasingly unhelpful husband has pointed out, she’s no spring chicken anymore. If she hangs up her nunchucks now and acquiesces to the idea of an Obama Presidency, odds are better than not that she’ll be in the mid-patch of 68 the next time she gets another bite at the apple, and there’s a good chance her dentition at the time will require she put it in the blender first.
On the other hand, if she plants a landmine or two that the GOP can steer Obama into in the fall, then she’s 64 and has one more chance in 2012 to throw down with John McCain or, more likely, Charlie Crist after President McCain eschews a second term because he had the mother of all senior moments and threw a punch at Dmitry Medvedev.
Hillary will not go out gracefully and she will not surrender. And she will not win the nomination with big delegate pickups in West Virginia and Kentucky, and a popular vote shot-in-the-arm from Puerto Rico.
She’s created a new delegate math towards achieving her goal. As Pat Buchanan noted on The McLaughlin Group, after her probable wins in West Virginia and Kentucky, and if she can make a game of it in Oregon, and an expected popular vote landslide in Puerto Rico, she can play the Florida and Michigan card before the DNC credentials committee and lobby for their delegates, using that gambit and Obama’s purported unelectability to woo the remaining 265 or so superdelegates to her side with her argument. She wants this nomination whatever the cost.
But as Uncle Junior said on The Sopranos to the U.S. Attorney who emphasized how much they wanted to nab Johnny Sack, Mangano, and Teresi, “I want to fuck Angie Dickinson. Let’s see who gets lucky first.”
This train is leaving the station and even the mighty Clinton mojo isn’t going to stop it. Barack Obama is going to have to get caught en flagrante with Kirk Cameron for the tide to turn for Hillary.
According to The Huffington Post Friday, Obama picked up another nine superdelegates to Hillary’s one, and if you believe ABC’s estimate, he has for the first time overtaken Hillary in pledged superdelegates. John Edwards (who is still being a nancy and standing on the sidelines when he could step up and deliver an immediate 25 supers to Barack, unless he’s teetering towards Hillary because Elizabeth says Clinton’s health care plan is better) said that the math isn’t Hillary’s friend at this point.
I have been waiting for this, but finally former Bill Clinton senior adviser turned Democratic party powerhouse phoning in his day job as Illinois’ 5th Congressional district representative while plotting to slit Nancy Pelosi’s throat and take over leadership of the House, Rahm Emanuel, weighed in on the issue and proclaimed Obama the “presumptive nominee.” That’s no small concession. Besides his close relationship with the Clintons, no one knows more how the sausages are made and can influence the House’s collective pulse rate more than Congressman Emanuel. If Rahm doesn’t think you’re going to live past Memorial Day, you’d probably best get your affairs in order.
The end game may well come Wednesday after Hillary will presumably crush Obama in West Virginia. She has scheduled a meeting with her fat-pocket donors to discuss the future, and I’ll bet lunch that they aren’t coming with their checkbooks. At that point, when Bill, Hillary, Terry, and Howard get out their wallets to split lunch, there will be only two places Hillary can go: Back to the Senate, or back to their personal bank account. She may well do the latter first, but God Almighty is going to step in and end this thing for her, either after Puerto Rico or, and this is my hope, after Obama shellacks her in my Oregon, yet she can still go out on a high note with her victory the same day in Kentucky.
Even the heartiest roaches can’t live without sustenance, and the Clintons are out of stray morsels. This ends finally very soon.