On One Hand

February 27, 2008

Anyone’s guess

Filed under: Uncategorized — ononehand @ 12:30 am
Tags: , ,

Here’s my prediction for the Democratic nomination. I made as Wisconsin voted, and since things seem to be shaping up as such so far, I’ll go out on a limb and say this is what I expect.

Barack Obama will win Texas by a comfortable margin. Hillary Clinton will win Ohio by a slight margin, so while their delegates from Ohio will be virtually the same, Obama will widen his lead because of the Texas delegates.

Hillary Clinton will drop out of the race in the morning of March 5. Barack will make a tremendous speech about how she didn’t just “break through the glass ceiling for women in politics, she shattered it, and there isn’t a twelve-year-old girl in America who doesn’t beleive that she, too, can be the president of the United States thanks to what Hillary Clinton has done.” Clinton will praise and endorse Barack Obama and everyone will thank her for being in the race.

Obama will make the speech again at the convention in Denver this September. He will add that there will be a woman president in the 21st century and that there will be more than one woman president in the 21st century. He will not nominate Hillary Clinton for the vice presidency (and she doesn’t even want it anyway); he will find a white man about a decade older than him with a strong military background.

It will take about a week and a half for Hillary Clinton supporters to start liking Barack Obama and focus their criticism instead on John McCain. There will be an initial spurt of anti-Obama talk but it will dry up within a couple days. Obama will be a popular president. Four years and eight years from now, there will be a dramatic increase in the number of young elected women across the country, and a less dramatic but still notable increase in the number of young elected African-Americans.

I beleive this is the trajectory we are on now; obviously a minor change can drastically move that trajectory as time goes on, and I certainly cannot predict a future speech word for word. But for now I can say that things are looking pretty firm for Barack Obama to be the next president of the United States, and he will lead one of the most diverse presidential cabinets in recent history.



  1. Let us hope. That’d be pretty darned amazing.

    Comment by randomcha — February 27, 2008 @ 2:45 pm | Reply

  2. It will take about a week and a half for Hillary Clinton supporters to start liking Barack Obama and focus their criticism instead on John McCain.

    Comment by radical_will — February 28, 2008 @ 10:50 am | Reply

    • (Okay so you’ve disabled deleting… now I have to leave my odd, botched post there… that was a quote from your post)

      I think it’ll take longer. Just like it’s taken longer than anyone expected for the conservatives to accept McCain even though he’s by far the most conservative candidate now. If the pundits and media aren’t as hard on Obama during the actual election, they will be after. At the bottom of everything, Obama has a bit of a flimsy resume compared with some of his competitors at the beginning of this race. Don’t think people won’t take that angle with criticism.

      Also, other political actors have a lot to gain by criticizing him once he’s president. Even the most well-loved presidents never had an approval rating much higher than 60% for long (except during times of war… and then they tend to plummet not long after that). My bet is, something involving some serious foreign policy is going to happen that Obama will respond to inadequately (probably not even his fault; it’s hard to get even decent outcomes out of international conflicts).

      Besides, if America really loved their president, what would they write about in the politics section of the news? I’m already bored of CNN singing Obama’s praises every half-hour at least. If I have to hear the words “Obama” and “phenomenon” in close proximity of each other again, I might hurl. I’m sure I’m not the only one (though I may be the only one in my age bracket).

      Comment by radical_will — February 28, 2008 @ 11:02 am | Reply

      • A 60 percent approval would be considered extremely well liked. If Obama’s approval rating stays at about 55 for his entire presidency then he will be referred to as an extremely popular American president. These things always hover around 50; if a president had an approval rating of 40, that would be considered unpopular, which is why Bush’s approval rating of around 35 is considered tragically low.

        Also, elections are not chosen based on resumes, they are chosen based on how many people vote for you. The only constitutional requirements for a presidential candidate is that he or she is over the age of 35 and was born in the United States. President Bush had a far less impressive resume than Barack Obama does (the governor of Texas is more of a figurehead with little real power; in another state, it might have been a more noteworthy job), yet when people criticize the current president it is not based on his lack of prior experience, it’s based on perceived incompetence in office. President Bill Clinton also had a less impressive resume than Barack Obama does; his criticisms were based on how he handled the office, not his resume. Everyone already knows what Barack Obama’s resume is but he does not come across as incompetent so they are willing to vote for him. Obama’s newness to politics is only notable in that it has been used in this campaign as something that makes him inferior to Hillary Clinton. Her campaign chose to use it as the main feature to distinguish the two candidates, but it was ultimately ineffective.

        Of course people will criticize Obama, but Democrats are not going to have the same problem with rallying behind their candidate that Republicans currently do. Conservatives have had the luxury of being able to criticize candidates as “too liberal” as a dirty word, whereas “conservative” is not a dirty word. Therefore John McCain being “not Conservative enough” is an issue for them. Democrats don’t have similar concerns that their candidate is “not liberal enough,” and are instead happy to paint their candidate as a moderate, or in Obama’s case, post-partisan, as much as is possible.

        Conservatives also have the luxury of saying that they’ve been in power for 8 years and the political pendulum is turned against them anyway. If any party were to stay in power longer than that, it would almost certainly have to become centrist. Conservatives who don’t want to see Republicans go centrist are the ones questioning John McCain. Democrats are just so sick of being ruled by Republicans that they don’t worry about where on the “spectrum” their candidate stands, and I think one of the reasons Barack Obama is so appealing to them is that he shuns the idea of a 2-dimensional spectrum in the first place.

        I don’t think the media is going to turn on Barack Obama either. The media don’t like or dislike candidates, but they are constantly infatuated with newness. They loved Hillary at first because she would be the first woman president, but Barack Obama made a successful argument that he was new in more ways. When he started to have “momentum,” it was all too appealing to journalists who take small trends and make them seem like huge trends. The fact of the matter is, the Democratic party, as a whole, has the “momentum” this year and the media will focus on that, and continue to paint the Obama candidacy as an unstoppable tide unless something big happens to reverse the trend. They also like youth more than age, and Obama is an entire generation younger than John McCain.

        The media are also full of people who are highly individualistic and fall on the liberal-to-libertarian end of the political spectrum. They get pissed when people keep insisting that Barack Obama is Muslim, and the more they feel Obama is being attacked based on his religion or race, the more time they will take to defend him. As soon as the Democratic nomination is tied up, they are going to make it critically, painfully obvious that Obama has been a member of a Christian church for 20 years and they will be explicit in calling these attacks racist. Obama is a very good speaker and knows how to play the media well, so I think he will come up with effective ways of capitalizing on that by seeming to be above it.

        Comment by ononehand — February 28, 2008 @ 5:44 pm

      • Right, and some of the media DID strongly defend Obama based on attacks that were hateful. It’s interesting that no one did that for Clinton, despite some serious misogynistic language thrown her way.

        A 60% approval rating IS considered very high, relative to it generally is for any one president. That leaves 40% of the population, of which there are certainly individuals within the media, to criticize the president. But you’re right, it’s hard to say how much one can really talk about the media “turning” on anyone. Almost anything can be criticized to some degree. I just don’t think he’ll continue to get the same treatment he’s gotten used to.

        I know you don’t want to acknowledge any special treatment. But take last night, for example. Obama said something really dumb: if Al Qaeda sets up a base in Iraq, he would send troops back there to take care of it. McCain points out (though he really didn’t have to… I hope most people already know) that an Al Qaeda base– called “Al Qaeda in Iraq”– is already there.

        I only saw it on AC360, but none of the pundits said once that he was ignorant, or an idiot, or that it was a stupid thing to say. Their wishy-washy position seemed to be something along the lines of it being a hypothetical situation, or out of context. The explanation was incomplete, though… they didn’t explain how you can say something like that and NOT be wrong. Then they focused more on how McCain-Obama back-and-forth is sure to intensify, blah blah blah…

        I feel like saying anything about politics to you is a bit like poking a very large dog with a very small stick… :P. You make a lot of good points, though.

        Comment by radical_will — February 28, 2008 @ 6:58 pm

      • Well I agree with you about the sexism against Hillary Clinton. It has just been my observation that every “feminist” I know (as in, every person who knows enough about feminist theory and agrees with it enough to claim that word for her/himself) is for Obama. That may be a product of the fact that men over age 30 do not call themselves feminists and I know many men under age 25 who do, and Obama has a huge following among young people.

        I’ve also noticed most gay men going for Hillary Clinton. I think they link sexism with homophobia so were more excited about a female candidate – hell, I was more excited about a female candidate too, I just didn’t want to lose the election on the off chance that Republicans nominated John McCain (and they did). But the gay men who were currently enrolled in college were more likely to go for Obama. I personally just like the way he talks, I’m sick of splitting the world into good vs. evil, and Clinton did that for me.

        Maybe you should get a bigger stick. I’m hardly a big dog, I’m just a medium-sized dog who looks at a lot of maps.

        Comment by ononehand — February 28, 2008 @ 9:24 pm

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