Anxiety, Fears Persist Over Prolonged Democratic Fight

Several stories out about the growing fear and anxiety over the continued fight between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. Many Democratic insiders are beginning to fear the worst in terms of what a drawn out battle between the two could do to the party and where it will leave the eventual Democratic nominee versus John McCain.

The first story from the New York Times:

WASHINGTON — Lacking a clear route to the selection of a Democratic presidential nominee, the party’s uncommitted superdelegates say they are growing increasingly concerned about the risks of a prolonged fight between Senators Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama, and perplexed about how to resolve the conflict.

Interviews with dozens of undecided superdelegates — the elected officials and party leaders who could hold the balance of power for the nomination — found them uncertain about who, if anyone, would step in to fill a leadership vacuum and help guide the contest to a conclusion that would not weaken the Democratic ticket in the general election.

While many superdelegates said they intended to keep their options open as the race continued to play out over the next three months, the interviews suggested that the playing field was tilting slightly toward Mr. Obama in one potentially vital respect. Many of them said that in deciding whom to support, they would adopt what Mr. Obama’s campaign has advocated as the essential principle: reflecting the will of the voters.

The bottom line there is the question that many superdelegates are asking themselves which is how can they support Clinton if Obama ends up with more delegates and the popular vote? They would clearly be slapping down the people’s vote in favor of their own preference.

Another story from MyWay:

WASHINGTON (AP) – Something happened to the feel-good, way-cool Democratic presidential contest in the months since a woman and a black man began their path-breaking race for the White House.

By the millions, black voters voted for the black candidate and women voted for the woman. White men seemed torn, by the millions.

Sen. Barack Obama has broken historic barriers, especially among the young, as the first black candidate with a serious chance at the presidency. Voters who might ordinarily balk at a female president have backed Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton in her pioneering effort.

Those gains have not been enough to erase divisions by race, a task perhaps beyond any mortal and any one election, nor lesser ones between the sexes.

And when the campaign moves beyond Democrats, the party of diversity, and into the general election, it’s questionable how much room is left for such progress.

There is definitely polarization regardless of what Democratic pundits will say. At this point, you have Obama and Clinton, both of whom rightly feel that they have a legitimate reason to continue fighting for the nomination. Obama because he’s leading in pledged delegates from winning states, Clinton because she’s very close in the pledged delegates and is leading in superdelegates. The question will be, how far can Clinton push a victory using superdelegates as her means to clench the nomination?

Furthermore, the two are beginning to bloody each other, doing the Republcan’s job for them. I have asked a few people whether they think either one will drop out for the “good of the party”? Nobody seems to think either candidate will do so. Clearly Obama is winning delegates so why should he? Clinton still sees a path to the nomination so there’s no way she’s backing down either.

Plus we’ve got two more debates scheduled now so there will be more time for them to go at it and possibly damage each other more.

More from the New York Times story:

The delegates said they hoped to avoid being portrayed as party elites overturning the will of Democratic voters. They spoke of having some power broker — the names mentioned included Howard Dean, the chairman of the Democratic National Committee; former Vice President Al Gore; and Speaker Nancy Pelosi — step in to forge a deal.

Yet even as some of them pleaded for intervention, they said they were not sure what could be done in a race with two candidates who have so much support.

Truthfully, that could be how it ends up. Someone like Al Gore coming in to broker peace in the Democratic Party and work a deal most Democratic voters will be pleased with.

This is all further evidence as to why I believe Obama and Clinton will end up on the same ticket, in one order or another.

  • Robert Rickover

    Obama needs Clinton, Clinton needs Obama

    If Clinton and Obama want to behave responsibly to make sure one of them actually makes it to the White House, they both need to stop flinging dirt at each other. Here’s the way to make that happen:

    Both publicly pledge that if are nominated for President, the other candidate will be their first choice for the Vice Presidential spot.

    This immediately puts a stop to personal attacks or calling their rival’s ability into question – you don’t dis you choice for second-in-command.

    They can and should debate the issues and clarify their differences. But they are now free to direct their shared anger and outrage where it belongs, at Bush’s policies, and at the policies of the man endorsed by Bush.

    For either Obama or Clinton to win his fall, he or she needs to lead a unified party. And this requires the enthusiastic support of the other.

    Clinton needs Obama, Obama needs Clilnton. That’s just the way it is.

    Obama-Clinton, Clinton-Obama – either “dream team” is McCain’s worst nightmare. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama can make that nightmare a reality for him now.

  • Funny, Al Gore would have unifed the Dems, more so than either Clinton or Obama. What’s he up to these days? Besides being sued by the weather channel.

  • Marker

    If they both end up on the same ticket, I guarantee that you will see a mass exodus of young people move away from the Democratic nominee and not vote in November. The quagmire for Obama is that he is a Democrat speaking for change which is an hypocrisy in itself. Attaching himself to Clinton would simply confirm that to many voters, thus ensuring a loss in November. Thanks Hill!