Feb 12 2008
11:41 am

By now it's quite apparent that Hillary is setting up Ohio and Texas as a firewall against Obama's momentum. The Giuliani analogy aside, take a look at how precarious this strategy really is. Texas has a combined primary-caucus system that doubly screws the Clinton campaign. First, she's proven herself completely unable to organize for caucuses. And 1/3 of all delegates are chosen at caucuses, which can only be attended by those who voted in the primary earlier in the day. Yes, you vote twice!

But then there's the delegate apportionment system for the primary component (2/3 of delegates). The statewide primary is utterly meaningless. All that matters is how you do in State Senate districts. But the delegate apportionment in each district is determined by how high Democratic turnout was in 2004. Thanks to Tom DeLay, a few heavily black and liberal districts will get a much greater say in delegate apportionment than the more scattered Latino majority districts in the Rio Grande Valley.

Here is a great analysis of the Texas race, district by district. Short answer: if Hillary thinks the demographic advantages of Texas will give her a big delegate victory, she is sorely mistaken.

Texas analysis

bill young's picture



In'76 Carter clinched the nomination by winning.

But in '84 Hart's upset win gave him new life.

Which will it be in '08?


Clinton won NH

They had been there since '92

The Clintons..Then boyfriend/girlfriend

Ran the McGovern campaign in Texas.

Think about this way..how many people that hung around the McGovern campaign,in Tn,voted Tuesday?

I did @ Walters State.

The Clintons got some folks helpin her in the lone star state thats known her 36 yrs.

Thats a hard core organization that will work the Texas 2 step.

Clinton pulls a Hart upset in Ohio..her old time friends in Texas win a nail biter

Round & round it goes

Elrod's picture

Connections won't matter

She had connections in Maine and Washington and couldn't organize caucuses there.

Also, media coverage is much greater now and momentum is much stronger. States react to other states; the tighter schedule makes that even more important.

bill young's picture


At Ann Richards funeral

Hillary said

"What happened in '72 stays in '72"

The crowd laughed.

Its deeper than connections..these folks will really help her.

Bbeanster's picture

But Bill, maybe you hit on

But Bill, maybe you hit on something that could work against Hillary. This was a funeral and '72 was a long time ago. Lots of heroes gone -- Ann, Molly, Barbara Jordan and many more. Henry Cisneros is still there, though, and it will be fascinating to see how this plays out. I expect Hillary will win Tejas, but not by as much as she needs to stop the bleeding.

Ragsdale2010's picture

Hillary Never Thought of Obama Past Super Tuesday

Hillary and her husband and their political advisors never envisioned B. Obama having anything more than a pulse after Super Tuesday, instead they were of the opinion he would have been done gone and they would use Texas and Ohio to squeeze the last few dollars out of the Edwards campaign and finally flatten his chances.

Something happened along the way and the Obama message got real traction, the Clinton message was understood by party newcomers and party purists to be the same old Clinton message which is bad for the every day Democrats and thus became bad for the Democratic Party leaders, which have supported Hillary and her husband, allowing them to spool up several million dollars after they left the White House.

Not only will Hillary fail miserably in Texas and possibly in Ohio, but her campaign will become the cesspool of political gamesmanship, gotcha, inuendo, and will continue to list toward the balance of the primary calendar, with no money, no message, and no realistic chance of being relevant in national politics ever again.

Real political power is taken from those who hold it and Hillary has been taken.

Go Obama.

Brian A.'s picture

Interesting (though not

Interesting (though not necessarily unbiased) analysis.

I've watched the self-described "best" political analysts ever on TV discussing the Texas primary, and none of them has ever mentioned the delegates being selected by primary and caucus.


Brian A.
I'd rather be cycling.

bill young's picture


then again she may get this thing to the convention

win mich & fla floor fight

clinton-strickland ticket

no not the chairman

the governor of ohio..who is for her

Ragsdale2010's picture

To Be Credible Hillary Has to Win Texas and Ohio Biggly

For Hillary to have any credibility with the nation, the media, the donors, and the undecideds, in this primary season, she has got to win Texas and Ohio in a biggly manner, something that would not appear to be in the cards in Texas and possibly not in Ohio, depending on the race/women line break there.

Teddy Stricklin is a downstate Ohio Republican (his old 6th congressional district abuts the Ohio River)and he sailed through the Democratic primary in his run for Governor. However, his old district has no large Ohio cities and the B. Obama team has resources in place throughout Cleveland, Toledo, Columbus, Dayton, and parts of Cincinanti to energize and turn out their supporters as Hillary has nothing to offer the citizens of Ohio other than what the rest of Big Bill's team of advisors can cobble together to have some semblance of a fluid campaign, not marred by continued infighting, power struggles, and additional issues regarding who is in charge (we went through this regularly between 1992 and 2000).

Many view Maggie Williams as a crisis manager, as evidenced by her tenure as Hillary's chief of staff, and certainly not a campaign manager although she will set a tone for better communication and particular talking points, however, she cannot pound on Obama like she would pounce on a Republican prosecutor.

R. Neal's picture

All the cable networks are

All the cable networks are all Obama all the time and talking about him as if. (Except for a brief intermission of contrition at MSNBC following the pimp-cident.)

It would appear then, at least listening to the wobbly heads, that super delegates are Clinton's only hope. And this will create more controversy and division in the ranks. And the MI/FL situation is still lurking with the potential for even more bad blood.

What a cluster f**k for the Clintons. But never count a Clinton out...

It was (contrary to what I would have said a year ago) Clinton's time and she would have been a lock. Then Obama showed up on the scene.

As some bubble head said this AM, it's like Butch and Sundance hunkered down behind a rock, looking out over the prairie at their pursuers, saying "who ARE those guys?"

Anyway, it would have been nice if Obama had waited his turn and gotten a little more experience under his belt. Then we could have had 16 years of a Democrat in the White House. Now it looks like we will be lucky to get four.

But I'll vote for the guy if I have to, even though I don't have a lot of confidence in his leadership abilities and I'm not sure I trust him to be a "real Democrat" when the chips are down. (EDIT: And save your keystrokes, I know many feel the same way about Clinton.)

On the other hand, never count a Clinton out...

P.S. Who wants to bet how many times either candidate, once nominated, will actually visit Tennessee during the campaign? I will put the over/under at one, if we're lucky.

Bbeanster's picture

The media are always biased

The media are always biased in favor of The Next Big Thing. There's a reason it's called The News. It wants new faces, new story lines, new ideas, new drama.

Obama is a unique, once-in-a-generation phenomenon. His roots are in Kansas and Kenya and Hawaii. He's classified as the first serious black candidate, but he's actually a biracial man who was raised by the white side of his family and has a perspective that nobody else on the national scene can claim. Is he the Tiger Woods of American politics, or will he fade down the stretch and betray his promise like, say, Alex Rodriguez? We may not know for years. A Republican politico friend who is frighteningly precient in these matters predicts with great confidence that Obama will be president five years from now. I don't much like the rest of his prediction (that McCain will beat HRC this November and serve one term), but it's striking how much all the Republicans I know fear Obama.

I believe this Next Big Thing thing is happening with Obama/Clinton, but I also believe that more than just that is going on. Obama has tapped into a yearning for things to be different. He is peddling hope, and people are buying. not unlike a guy who used to say he believed in a place called Hope.

bizgrrl's picture

His roots are in Kansas No!

His roots are in Kansas

No! Say it's not true! I've sworn to never do business with someone from Kansas ever again.

Pam Strickland's picture

He never actually lived

He never actually lived there, but his mother's family is from there and at a recent event in Kansas he spoke of a member of the extended family. Not unlike him visiting the family in Kenya. He grew up in Hawai'i (with a couple of years in Indonesia) and then did college in So. Calif., NYC, and Harvard. Somewhere in there he went to Chicago.

Pam Strickland

"We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." ~Kurt Vonnegut

Bbeanster's picture

I think everybody is at

I think everybody is at least minimally aware of Obama's basic bio -- mother from Kansas, father from Kenya, born in Hawaii and reared (for awhile) in Hawaii. So it seems fair to say that's where his "roots" are. He has an elderly cousin (maybe several), and she appeared at one of his rallies. He did real well in Kansas.

Pam Strickland's picture

Most are. Some aren't. I

Most are. Some aren't. I know you said roots. I wasn't dissing what you said, just clarifying that he never actually lived there. No biggie.

Pam Strickland

"We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." ~Kurt Vonnegut

Bbeanster's picture

How Obama ended up in

How Obama ended up in Illinois:


not unlike how Hillary ended up in her former home state, Arkansas.

Pam Strickland's picture

Yes and no. HRC followed BC

Yes and no. HRC followed BC back to Arkansas giving up a variety of interesting things that she might have done. They didn't get married until sometime after she'd already committed to living there and supporting his career. I think they both initially taught at the law school before moving to LR where she went to work for Rose.

Obama moved to Chicago on his own to work in community organizing in programs started by Saul Alinsky, a rather leftist activist who, coincidently was the subject of HRC's senior thesis at Wellesley. He met his future wife through mutual friends after he moved there. They had been at Harvard law at different times.

One of the more interesting things I've read about Obama in the last year is a NYT story that focused on Michelle's brother, Craig Robinson, who played college basketball for Princeton and then played professionally in Europe. Robinson eventually became a stock brocker and when his sister started dating Obama, she asked him to take him to play some pick up ball because she'd heard her father and brother talk so much about how you could tell a lot about someone's character by the way they played basketball. Robinson -- who coaches at Brown now -- said Obama wasn't shy even amongst former pro players, but he also wasn't a ball hog. Couldn't find the story, but here's one of those video things the NYT does sometimes:


Pam Strickland

"We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." ~Kurt Vonnegut

bizgrrl's picture

I think everybody is at

I think everybody is at least minimally aware of Obama's basic bio -- mother from Kansas,

Not everybody was minimally aware of where Obama's Mom is from. Don't much know where any politician's Mom is from. Of course then, that could be one of those things Obama didn't get a chance to tell Floridians when he vowed not to campaign there, thus putting him at a disadvantage.

Bbeanster's picture

Not everybody was minimally

Not everybody was minimally aware of where Obama's Mom is from. Don't much know where any politician's Mom is from. Of course then, that could be one of those things Obama didn't get a chance to tell Floridians when he vowed not to campaign there, thus putting him at a disadvantage.

Sorry, that one went right over my head.

bobaubin's picture

"waitied his turn"?

Looks to me like the people think it is Obama's turn NOW, the Clinton's had their turn already. Also I really don't get where you come up with this "real Democrat" stuff from. If you look at the way they have voted and the positions they have taken Barack Obama is clearly the more "real" of the two. The nomination isn't over certainly and I wouldn't "count a Clinton out" until Obama wins the nomination - but if Barack Obama can overcome the pro-Clinton bias among the party establishment and win the nomination it will be a major achivement.

edit: Also on the news networks CNN is pro-Clinton, MSNBC is pro-Obama... Fox is... I don't really know. I can't watch Faux News without coming close to an Elvis moment.

Ragsdale2010's picture

Hillary's Not Releasing Tax Returns

Hillary still refuses to release her tax returns and uses the canned answer that she will only do so if she is the presidential nominee. I don't get it. She is continually alientating her female support, offering up guarantees that Bill will behave in the White House (sure he will), not acting like a real democrat (Democrats release their taxes, Republicans don't pay theirs)[Anybody checked on Richard Cate's tax bill lately?], letting Bill compare Obama to Reverend Jesse Jackson, and claiming 35 years of public service. Maybe that's why she won't release her tax returns, she's not been voluntering down at the shelter, she's set up a number of tax shelters and can't wait to fill them up again.

Go Obama. He was raised by conservative parents who value education and hard work.

Rachel's picture

Go Obama. He was raised by

Go Obama. He was raised by conservative parents who value education and hard work.

Look, support whoever you want, but that's just silly. Dorothy & Hugh Rodham were also "conservative parents who valued education and hard work."

So what?

Carole Borges's picture

I think she will have to release her tax returns

If she doesn't the old untrue accusations of the Clinton's always making shady deals will come up.

Obama has already said he thinks everyone should release their tax returns when they run for office.

R. Neal's picture

old untrue accusations of

old untrue accusations of the Clinton's always making shady deals will come up.

I'm only familiar with the one, which was Whitewater, which the government spent $70 million over seven years investigatin and couldn't find evidence of wrongdoing.

Were there others?

(I'm sure someone will come up with an exhaustive list. When you mention Hsu, be sure to mention Obama's involvement with the guy. And Rezko, who Obama was less than forthcoming about during the debates. See, we could play this game all day.)

bizgrrl's picture

Let's also get some

Let's also get some additional information about Obama's dealings for one of his largest contributors, Exelon, a nuclear power company.

Eleanor A's picture

Bbbbut...there's nothing

Bbbbut...there's nothing controversial in Obama's background! And he's going to beat Hillary and then the Republicans by sheer force of will! And everyone in the general will believe everything he says! You just gotta *have faith*!

Sheez. Would that it were true, seriously. Then it wouldn't bug me so much that the Dems are teetering on the verge of nominating yet another un-winnable candidate. At least McCain may do something about the budget deficit.

bobaubin's picture

Either Democrat has the

Either Democrat has the ability to beat McCain, and you are being ridiculously disrespectful to Obama supporters. It is all just sour grapes, because the candidate you want isn't winning. Funny how some say it is the Obama supporters spewing the venom.

bizgrrl's picture

ridiculously disrespectful

ridiculously disrespectful to Obama supporters


Are you new? Are you serious? The majority spewing venom at Clinton and you claiming the opposite. Hah!

bobaubin's picture

Just calling it like I see

Just calling it like I see it. While I certainly have seen some unfair attacks on Clinton from Obama people, I've seen far more from Clinton people on Obama in general. Especially the whole hope is meaningless meme when Obama has clearly set out his postions and what he means by the politics of hope. Also I see lots of comments here about how horrible Obama are supporters here but beyond a few scattered comments I haven't seen it. Regardless it is a ridiculously broad brush to paint ALL Obama people with. I've been critical but I don't think I've put forward anything unfair on Hillary, and I know we will need to work together for victory regardless of who the Democratic nominee is. I for one am completely uninterested in four more years of tax cuts for the rich and never ending war. We are on the cusp of the end of an error unless we tear each other apart on the way there.

Eleanor A's picture

I think he's new, biz. At

I think he's new, biz. At least he's got the right idea as far as folks needing to work together, but I think you and I are together in believing it's a far cry to be claiming innocence for the Obama supporters around here.

What do you want me to say, bob? We have an honest disagreement, we both have the right to our opinions. I don't think what I said is one bit uncalled for, and in fact it's quite mild, considering what Obama people have posted here recently about Hillary and about her supporters.

(I've personally been called a racist more than once for supporting Hillary; just now someone in another thread was saying Hillary will bribe the DLC to win the superdelegates; there've been lots of posts about Monicagate; anything anti-Obama is portrayed as whining; Clinton's policies have been roundly described for weeks as "the same as George Bush"...shall I go on? And all this on a blog in a state where Hillary won the primary by 10+ points.)

I'm not out here claiming I'll vote for McCain if Obama gets the nomination, in contrast to a few vocal anti-Hillary folks hereabouts. Just stating that I don't think Obama has a hope in hell of beating McCain. All this said, I really think you ought to look elsewhere for a target for your lectures on composure and decorum.

(And I've posted all this realizing it's going to open me up to yet still more accusations of "whining" or various other malfeasance, from many of the Obama people. Not that I'm losing sleep over it.)

Pam Strickland's picture

I think he's new, biz. He's

I think he's new, biz.

He's been around for 37 weeks, and the avatar is familiar. I just think he's not looking at things clearly but with a jaundiced eye. It happens.

Pam Strickland

"We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." ~Kurt Vonnegut

bobaubin's picture

It is you looking only from

It is you looking only from your own point of view, but this argument is pointless and I'll just agree to disagree.

bobaubin's picture


I think it is a bit unfair to suggest Hillary has tax shelters. There is no need for this kind of attack on another Democrat. Let's stick to the issues there is plenty to choose Obama over Clinton without getting personal.

Also, Barack was raised largely by his mother alone and she was far from conservative (thankfully).

bizgrrl's picture

Obama has already said And

Obama has already said

And what Obama wants, Obama gets?

Sounds like you're already alluding to wrong-doing.

bill young's picture

primary politics

The presidential primary has been around for nearly a century.
But until 1976 only two mattered..the West Virginia Democratic primary of 1960 elected a president & the Wisconsin Democratic primary of 1968 defeated one.

In '72 the Democrats built the primary road to nomination..the Republicans followed in '76.Oddly,those are the only two that there was any doubt of the nominee @ the convention.

Could happen this time & like the thread said..it's Texas & Ohio & Clinton's gotta at least get a split decision.

But..NEVER in the last 36 years of primary politics has anybody had the big MO at halftime & lost.

Late in the primary season of '76,Ronnie Reagan got hot,got close but didnt make it & others have bucked the trend as the clock was winding down..Jerry Brown,Gary Hart & Ted Kennedy come to mind.

On the other hand,nobodys been this close,this late, with ole mo going the other way.

So Clinton can not be counted out.Super delegates are going to hang for a while..Could beat the expectation game in Wisconsin & 40% would look mighty good right now..45% would be a win..no joke.

Clintons out if she loses both..no matter how close.
Super delegates would stampede Obama.

If it's a split decision..maybe.

The delegate count would still be close.

Fla & Mich would still be in question.Do you believe uncommitted super delegates are against seating Fla & Mich.which means it aint 2025 to win..its higher & Pa looms all by itself in April.

Have the Clintons ever lost anything in Ohio?

CNN exit polls..Clinton latino vote..Cal-71%,NM-65%,Nev-64%,Ari-60%..even in Obama's home state of Ill..Clinton won 51% of latino vote.Texas has a huge latino vote.

Keep this in mind about Ohio...Its as if Belle Morris(16-S)was a state..the vote @ 16-S...Clinton-52%..Obama-39%

CBT's picture

Tax returns? Where are all

Tax returns? Where are all the HRC supporters' comments about then candidate Corker releasing his complete returns two years back (you'll recall the gripe was he released the basic returns without schedules)? Will Hill disclose?

bizgrrl's picture

Wasn't that when he was the

Wasn't that when he was the Republican candidate in the general election? Or, did the Republicans keep pushing Corker for his "complete" tax returns?

CBT's picture

Wasn't that when he was the

Wasn't that when he was the Republican candidate in the general election?

And, you all accuse me of making excuses for Republican candidates(?). It appears Democrats make excuses when it serves candidates they support. So, it's ok that she keep her finances a secret because she's only running for Democratic nomination?

And yes, some Republicans were asking for Sen. Corker's returns during the primary.

Old Hickory's picture

Hillary Not Revealing Her Wealth Until She Has To

The vast majority of Hillary's support comes from the Wal-Mart regular shopping crowd that needs extremely low prices to hold it all together and when Hillary shows a net worth in excess of $30 million, it will be a hard spot to engender herself to her life long followers, many of which she has fooled time and time again. She didn't amass a fortune by spending 35 years in public service, she did it through sweetheart deals with George Soros, Johnny Wong, and anybody who had enough cash to throw at her to get her to tote their agenda.

Hillary Clinton is the Bob Dole of the Democratic Party and her time has come and gone, she got 8 years in the White House and that's enough for anybody. Even Liddy Dole realized that enough is enough and stepped away back to the role of being an elected Senator and left it at that.

I'm pulling for Obama, he's a breath of fresh air and has no baggage or disengenuous agenda for the people he represents.

Eleanor A's picture

(He has an agenda...? ) ;)

(He has an agenda...? )


bill young's picture

ARG Texas poll



2 new texas polls
54-38 Clinton
48-41 Clinton

new wisconsin poll
49-43 clinton

Anonymous's picture

Vote Twice? I think not

The phrase "Vote Twice" is making the rounds here in Texas, especailly in the media. Elrod even uses it in his blog post.

The problem with the phrase is that is can easily be misunderstood. Obviously, motiviated Democrats should vote in the primary and then show up after the polls close to stand for their candidate. But this is not "voting" in the traditional sense. At least in Harris County, where Houston is, county officials are concerned that the phrase will be misinterpreted. Perhaps people will believe they can vote in both the Republican and Democratic primaries (which is illegal) or literaly vote twice in the same primary (also illegal).

I know this is really about semantics, but you need to be more specific about what what "vote twice" means and attempt to avoid using this phrase altogether.

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