Monday, March 3, 2008

Could Hillary Come Back?

Most political observers, including myself, had written the Clinton campaign's obituary. Suddenly, it looks like the tide may have turned.

Although the coverage hasn't always been positive over the past ten days, Hillary has dominated it. The vast majority of campaign coverage has been about Hillary and whether or not her campaign was over. This has had the net effect of keeping Obama and his message off the air. In addition, what coverage Obama has gotten has not been very good. People are starting to ask questions about his positions and his associations.

The poll numbers are the most telling. Obama had rallied to an 8 point lead in Texas. With 24 hours to go, that lead is down to 1 (statistically irrelevant). In Ohio he had been closing the gap on Hillary, but that stalled at about 5 percent. The late momentum is with Hillary. As I've said before, you don't have to strike the right chord with voters throughout the campaign, just on the right day.

Hillary has, intentionally or not, positioned herself as the underdog. Victories in Texas and Ohio will add new life to her campaign and an exciting new chapter to her story. Where things go from there? Who knows. I thought I had this thing figured out a couple of days ago, but the dynamic has shifted.

In the end I believe it's a matter of who will lose to McCain. I just don't see Americans getting all excited about surrender in Iraq, nationalized health care, higher taxes and repealing "No Child Left Behind".

Still, it's fun to watch.

No comments: