Obama – The Grinch That Stole Hillary’s Christmas

 Looks like the Hillary attack machine is going full force against Obama as he gains more and more support and she drops like a rock.  Hillary will go extremely negative over the next several weeks as she first loses ground to Obama, then surprise, she loses ground to Edwards, finishing an awful 3rd in Iowa.  Will Obama steal Hillary’s Christmas? CLEAR LAKE, Iowa (AP) – Hillary Rodham Clinton suggested Monday that Barack Obama has too little experience and perhaps too much ambition, pressing an increasingly aggressive campaign against her chief rival for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Both candidates were in Iowa, one month before the nation’s leadoff caucuses with new polls showing Obama had whittled away her early lead and they were virtually tied among Democrats in the state.

“So you decide which makes more sense: Entrust our country to someone who is ready on day one … or to put America in the hands of someone with little national or international experience, who started running for president the day he arrived in the U.S. Senate,” Clinton said.

Obama spokesman Bill Burton retorted, “The truth is, Barack Obama doesn’t need lectures in political courage from someone who followed George Bush to war in Iraq, gave him the benefit of the doubt on Iran, supported NAFTA and opposed ethanol until she decided to run for president.”

Democrats Pushing Hill & Huma Abedin Love Story??

But it’s not just Republicans who are pushing the story. Will Folks, a well-known blogger in South Carolina, reported yesterday that he’d “heard from sources at rival Democratic presidential campaigns who claim that they ‘know it to be true’ that Hill and Huma are romantically-involved.” I called Folks, and he said that two different Democratic campaigns had told him about the alleged affair, but neither had “presented anything remotely resembling proof.” Folks said he couldn’t identify which campaigns were spreading the story, so I called Rod Shealy, a top GOP consultant. Shealy told me he had no idea of who was talking up the story—but that the only Democrats with active staffs and organizations in South Carolina were Barack Obama, John Edwards, and Bill Richardson. (On an entirely separate note, Shealy had an interesting observation about Ron Paul’s stunning announcement that he had raised several million dollars in a single day. “That shows that his supporters are not just fringe loonies,” he said. “These are people with checking accounts.”)

America Hates Hillary Clinton

America Hates Hillary Clinton

And this from the Telegraph, Mrs Clinton might be the frontrunner in the polls, but almost everywhere we went people questioned her candidacy. Many stated bluntly that they did not want a woman in charge.  “She couldn’t keep her own home together, so how can we trust her to manage America?” asked Micki Martinson, a housewife in Somerset, Pennsylvania.  While we found many people who hated Mrs Clinton, those who loved her were few and far between.  “I’m always amazed how we can screw things up,” said Steve Ayers, a coffee-shop owner in Hannibal. “Maybe the way we screw it up this time is by nominating Hillary – across the Midwest that would be the only way of unifying Republicans.”Although Mr Clinton is no longer the villain he was for many in the late 1990s, there was precious little evidence of nostalgia for the Clinton years – another alarm bell for the Hillary campaign.Apart from the war on terror, the issue we were confronted by again and again was illegal immigration – a preoccupation of Democratic as well as Republican voters. “We did everything legally and so should they,” said Ljiljana Zezelj, 38, a new citizen from Croatia. “Nothing will work in this country until we secure our borders,” said Laura Dietz, a retiree in Phoenix, Arizona.Is this what the polls are NOT telling us?http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml;jsessionid=HXOG5ZDB4KFEHQFIQMFSFGGAVCBQ0IV0?xml=/news/2007/11/24/wamerica124.xml&page=2

HOT! HOT! Hillary Accused of Affair with Huma Abedin HOT! HOT!

Sun Nov 25 2007 20:45:12 ET
The TIMES of London starts 'The Ugliest Month' with a full page photo takeout on Hillary Clinton and her beautiful aide.

"Hillary Clinton has been accused of having an affair with Huma Abedin," reads the caption.

The splash stunned British readers and angered campaign insiders.

"This does not even qualify as tabloid trash... it's ridiculous and reckless," a Hillary confidante explained over the weekend.

The paper made no claims to knowing the truth of the relationship between Hillary and Huma, in its story headlined: "Snarls, smears and innuendo as attack dogs get ready for the fray." Matt Drudge promises more . . . Is this the “Bombshell”?  Will another Clinton say, "I did not have sex with that woman . . ."

Democratic Debate Boo-Birds Revealed, Harry Reid To Blame?

The following was reported by a Nevada Democratic caucus blogger: The Reids (Senator Harry and son Rory, who is the Nevada Democratic Party chairman)  are at the top of an old-fashioned state political machine that displayed its effectiveness in delivering for Hillary last week at Thursday’s Democratic debate and the party’s Jefferson Jackson Dinner. The party machine provided an enthusiastically unrestrained audience for Hillary and a hostile environment for her principal opponents. It has been reported elsewhere how the booing during the debate came from the area occupied by Democratic Party ticket holders associated with Dina Titus, failed 2006 candidate for governor and an ardent Hillary backer. And these are the people with the greatest influence on organizing the party’s caucus in two months.

Obama and Edwards are against the Reid party machine in Nevada.

Nevada Democratic Caucus Looks Like Another Harry Reid Failure

Here are some numbers from the Research2000 poll of likely voters in Nevada, November 16-19:

70% of Democrats following the race now, with 30% “not too closely”.
19% of Democrats claim they will “definitely” caucus and 21% claim
they will “probably” do so. 60% are unlikely to caucus. Many in Nevada are new to the state, with a lot from California, and are not familiar with the caucus process, which in Nevada is complex.

In Iowa, a long time caucus state, only 15-20% of Democrats normally turn out.

One caucus blog is reporting that Hillary has overplayed her hand in Nevada by  pissing off a lot of grassroots volunteers.  The charge is that volunteers not approved by Hillary are being pushed aside as caucus chairs.  Nevada Democratic voters may be looking to throw their support to Obama or Edwards, because of the heavy-handed Clinton tactics.
Obama has the best grassroots effort going in Nevada with support from many of those that previously supported Bill Clinton and then Al Gore.

This was reported by one Nevada caucus blog, “At most party events, the Obama campaign has no tables, no signs and no visible staff presence.”
 Are the Obama workers, as the blogger states, “deliberately keeping their organization below the radar. Or is it restricted to the predominantly African-American “westside” and North Las Vegas?  Thats what the Democratic volunteers I talk to are thinking about.”

The blogger continues, “A variety of factors combine to make this state one of the most difficult places in the US to operate politically. In fact, one has to wonder whether the Democratic Party fully understood what it was agreeing to in August 2006, when it decided to anoint Nevada as an “early state”. Nevada is considered a “swing-state,” but except for Bill Clinton’s victories in 1992 and 1996, it voted Republican in every other Presidential election since 1980. Also, its current governor and junior senator are both Republicans. The tradition of political apathy fits neatly with the state’s economic mainstay. So, in gaming parlance, Nevada’s political elite, particularly Harry Reid and his son Rory, are playing “high stakes” with their state’s image and personal reputations. While the current odds do not favor Obama, in the end it may be his campaign that lends needed legitimacy to the Nevada caucus.  One objective, which the Party’s senior elected official Senator Harry Reid wants is to ensure a successful caucus that enhances Nevada’s political importance. A flawed caucus would seriously damage the national standing of both the Nevada Democratic Party and Harry Reid. And his image is already suffering from a less-than stellar record of achievement to date as leader of a majority in the Senate that failed to deliver on its 2006 election mandate.  The second objective is being pursued by Rory Reid, the senator’s son who is trying to carve out a larger space for himself in Nevada state politics (currently dominated by his father). Rory is State Campaign Chairman for Hillary Clinton, and his overriding objective is to get her elected. Rory Reid is ideally positioned as Commission Chairman for Clark County, home to most of the state’s population and the gaming industry centered in Las Vegas. He also perfectly epitomizes my theory that, in general (and with apologies to the many sincerely committed people with whom I worked in the Clinton Administration), Obama attracts idealists, while the Clintons attract opportunists.

The Nevada Democratic caucus could prove to be a national embarrassment to Harry Reid as he rolls the dice for greater national influence.  Prediction:  The Nevada caucus will be another Harry Reid failure, due to many new voters in Nevada, no history of strong caucus attendance, apathy, lack of overall caucus organization, a transient population, no sense of community.  Look for low turnout.  The state party has yet to name all the caucus polling sites!

Hillary Struggles With Image In Iowa

Today’s Wall Street Journal features a page-one story about Mr. Obama’s chief rival, Hillary Rodham Clinton. Her campaign is struggling to create a stronger, more likeable image in Iowa, the only state where they are neck and neck in the polls. Now, her party foes are nervous and even desperate as the days dwindle to the first, potentially make-or-break vote in Iowa, the only state where polls show a tight race. They are all firing at her, aiming where she is most vulnerable — her reputation as too cautious and calculating. As Iowa caucus goers watch and listen to Hillary, Obama and Edwards, they are forming opinions and because of how the caucus goers vote, the person in second place may wind up in first place.  As followers of the third, forth and fifth place candidates have to re-focus their caucus votes, if their candidate gets less than 15%, the person in second place may pick up the most of those votes.  This is why Barack Obama recently asked a Dodd supporter in Iowa if he could please be her second choice.


Hillary, Obama & Edwards, Bad Blood Revisited

Here are a few of the not-so-nice assertions Democratic candidates made of one another during recent weeks in Iowa:

• Obama told a group of union leaders that Clinton and John Edwards’ past statements show they are inconsistent on labor issues. Staff for both Clinton and Edwards said Obama took the comments out of context. Edwards, for example, made statements regarding right-to-work laws in 1998 about North Carolina’s law and was not referring to national policy, his aides pointed out. Ultimately, members of United Auto Workers Region 4 recommended an Obama endorsement to their national council.

• Clinton criticized Obama’s statements that his experience living in Indonesia as a child would better prepare him to deal with foreign policy as president. She highlighted her own experiences, saying: “Now, voters will judge whether living in a foreign country at the age of 10 prepares one to face the big, complex international challenges we will face.”

• Edwards called Obama’s promise to bring change to Washington politics a “fantasy.” Edwards, while campaigning in eastern Iowa, said Obama’s goal to dull the power of lobbyist groups is misguided. “The notion that these entrenched interests are going to compromise away their powers is a fantasy,” Edwards said. An ABC News/Washington Post poll released in the past week showed Obama edging Clinton among likely Iowa caucus-goers by 30 percent to 26 percent. Edwards had 22 percent.

Clinton Challenges Obama’s Experience – Where’s Hillary’s Experience???

“Voters will judge whether living in a foreign country at the age of 10 prepares one to face the big, complex international challenges the next president will face,” Clinton said during a campaign stop in Shenandoah, Iowa.“I think we need a president with more experience than that,” said ClintonHere’s a throw down challenge for Hillary, or anyone who wants to answer for Hillary – “Describe any one or two foreign policy issues that you successfully promoted while First Lady”.

Hillary down, Obama Up In Iowa

Latest Washington Post-ABC poll in Iowa showing Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (N.Y.) in second place for the Democratic presidential nomination. Her rival, Sen. Barack Obama (Ill.) led in the poll with 30 percent, Hillary trailed at 26 percent and former Sen. John Edwards (N.C.) was in third at 22 percent. New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, auditioning for vice president, was fourth at 11 percent. This is the first primary or caucus poll nationwide or in any state in the nation this entire year that shows Hillary in second place! Here’s the really bad news for Hillary:• Obama is running even with Hillary among Iowa women. With Oprah in Iowa, expect Obama’s numbers amoung women to increase.• 55 percent of Iowa Democrats want change , and Obama leads with 43 percent to Edwards’s 25 and Hillary’s 17 percent.  I expect that between now and the caucus, this percentage will reach 65% with Obama taking half.• Half of Hillary’s voters have not attended a previous caucus, versus 43 percent of Obama’s and 24 percent of Edwards’s.  The fewer first time caucus goers show up, because of weather, driving distance, schedule conflicts, the better for Obama. Obama’s numbers in Iowa are heading up, and Hillary’s numbers are heading down.  Enough to put her in third place?  Its possible.  Watch closely, if Hillary begins to taper off on her time in Iowa, or personal appearances, and begins to focus on New Hampshire, it’s a sure sign she has written Iowa off.

Obama Ahead of Hillary In Iowa – 30% vs. 26%

Latest:  Fox News is reporting that Obama is now polling ahead of Hillary in Iowa.

For Democrats, there may be a shift from issues being important to character being important.  Also, Obama may have hit on a good strategy, going after Hillary on the character and experience (lack of) issues.Iowa Democrats are tilting toward change, and Obama appears to be benefiting from it.

Fifty-five percent of those surveyed reported that a “new direction and new ideas” are their top priority, compared with 33 percent who favored “strength and experience.” That is a shift from July, when 49 percent sought change and 39 percent experience.

Nationally, Clinton is viewed as a candidate of change, with support from 41 percent of Democrats seeking a new direction in a recent Post-ABC poll. But in Iowa, Obama dominates the “change” vote, winning 43 percent of that group, compared with 25 percent for Edwards and 17 percent for Clinton.

She appears more vulnerable on questions of character. Thirty-one percent found Obama to be the most honest and trustworthy, about double the percentage who said the same of Clinton. While about three-quarters credited both Obama and Edwards with speaking their mind on issues, only 50 percent said Clinton is willing enough to say what she really thinks. Forty-five percent said she is not sufficiently candid.

Overall, the poll points to some strategic gains for Obama. His support is up eight percentage points since July among voters 45 and older — who accounted for two-thirds of Iowa caucus-goers in 2004.