Monday, June 9, 2008

Obama: Another doomed Democrat?

My latest article at The American Spectator:
Somewhere, there should be a Hall of Fame honoring profoundly stupid Democratic Party campaign ideas. Among the featured exhibits would be Michael Dukakis's 1988 tank ride and John Kerry's 2004 Ohio duck-hunting trip. ("Can I get me a hunting license here?")
The important thing to remember about such classic campaign blunders, however, is that Democrats didn't realize their disastrous potential until it was too late to prevent them. Whether it's George McGovern's choice of Thomas Eagleton as his 1972 running mate or Fritz Mondale's promise to raise taxes in 1984, for some reason there's never anybody around Democrat HQ with the foresight to shout an advance warning.
If Sen. Barack Obama's presidential campaign melts down this year, however, the Democrats won't have that excuse. This time, there was plenty of warning . . .
By all means, read the whole thing, including this gonzo flashback:
In August 1972, Hunter S. Thompson recalled a conversation with McGovern campaign manager Gary Hart: "One of his central beliefs for the past two years had been that winning the Democratic nomination would be much harder than beating Nixon... So any Democratic candidate could beat Nixon, and all the candidates knew it."
I'd spent a few days thinking about this topic, but it gelled Sunday when Obama suffered another one of those mini-scandals at the same time his campaign team was showing evidence of overconfidence.

Given his absurdly good fortune so far (that first book deal, for example) Team Obama can hardly be blamed for believing their candidate can do no wrong. That kind of hubris, however, inevitably spells trouble in politics.

UPDATE: Obama just clinched the Democratic nomination. Hillary conceded and endorsed him. He's the object of quasi-religious media adoration. And yet he's just 2 points ahead in the latest Gallup daily tracking poll. Just sayin' . . .

UPDATE II: Some guy at MyDD is simply rapturous over Obama's poll "bounce," calling it "dramatic," among much else. I wonder if someone could go back to June 2004 and tell me what the Bush-Kerry numbers were?

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