Barack Obama Clinches the Democratic Nomination for President: HuffPost Bloggers Weigh In

Barack Obama Clinches the Democratic Nomination for President: HuffPost Bloggers Weigh In
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Senator Clinton's speech last night was a justifiably proud recitation of her accomplishments over the course of this campaign, but it did not end right. But she didn't do what she should have done. As hard and as painful as it might have been, she should have conceded, congratulated, endorsed and committed to Barack Obama. Therefore the next 48 hours are now as important to the future reputation of Hillary Clinton as the last year and a half have been. READ MORE

It was inevitable -- somebody had to lose. Typically, identity politics is a tactic that Democrats employ against Republicans. This time, it was the blueprint for a battle fought within the Democratic party. An extremely emotional race that ended last night, but the final coda has yet to be heard. The stage was set not last night with Hillary Clinton's non-concession speech but last weekend at the DNC's Rules and Bylaws Committee meeting, which seems by now ancient history. But it's not possible to deconstruct what is happening now and the dance between the candidates without looking to what happened on that day. READ MORE

I didn't know it would feel this bad. I didn't know it would feel this personal. I'm all for a united Democratic party. But losing my last chance to see a woman in the White House feels like shit. And the gloating by the press is even worse. It sounds like I told you so. It feels like watching Joan of Arc burned at the stake. You can smell the burning flesh. And then all the crowing about breaking the race barrier -- which we haven't done yet. READ MORE

2). Pour unlimited resources into Ohio. There is no road to Republican victory that does not pass through Ohio. Democrats have a number of winning scenarios that don't involve Ohio. But it makes sense for Democrats to fight for Ohio tooth and nail, both because our success there would deliver a death blow to Republican hopes and also to divert Republican resources to the state. Ohio is so critical to Republicans that they will be forced to match us dollar for dollar, ad for ad. Our resource advantage will allow us to invest unlimited sums in Ohio and still have resources to win over a very large playing field.

3). Obama should not even think about opting into the system of public financing for the general election. The best thing that Obama can do to promote real, lasting campaign finance reform -- both for President and Congress -- is to win this election. READ MORE

McCain clearly faces a tougher time making his case than Obama, whose own story parallels the immigrant story and whose energy has inspired the young. With an uninspired Republican base, it seems McCain needs the race card more than Hillary ever did, yet he plays it only at his--and his party's--future peril. Over the next four decades, the demographics are hardly with them. As much as the Clintons depended on an old majority, Obama could be handing Democrats the new majority. But the Democrats aren't much different than the record industry: give them a sure thing and they'll always figure out how to screw it up. READ MORE

After 16 years, Americans have finally declared, state by state, caucus by caucus, primary by primary, that they have had enough of the Boomer generation in the White House. In the final analysis, Hillary Clinton is smart, charming -- and the wrong person for the times. Voters have moved beyond Boomerism. Now, Americans will choose between an older version of duty, honor, glory, and a return to the American Century vs. a new vision of global pluralism, diversity, change, and youthful vigor. READ MORE

2008-06-04-shaw_narcotic_II.jpg With the end of the Democratic race, one thing I'm simply dying for is less noise and steerage from the Page Six-inspired traditional media. I hit my limit last night, the cable, broadcast and magazine folks seemingly unable to fix a good look at Obama's historic achievement for fear of forsaking their narcotic fixation on the Hillary-Barack soap opera. READ MORE

I understand why you supported her. But why would you allow yourself to be played as a pawn for a Washington power couple's personal ambitions? The Vice Presidency is a matter to be worked out between Senators Obama and Clinton, without perpetuating ugly divisions - divisions that threaten the future of our country, the safety of our world's civilians, the lives of our troops, our reproductive rights, and the ability of many of us to survive economically in the years to come.

We who opposed Hillary Clinton paid her the ultimate respect as a woman, and as a human being: We judged her on her policies and her actions. The verdict is in. It would be wise and fair to accept it. READ MORE

What was Clintonism? Depending on your perspective, its distinguishing characteristic was either astute centrism or craven triangulation. Yet, at the heart of Clintonism, was a fixed assumption about the nature of the American electorate. Clintonism looked at the trends of voter turnout, a steady decline of voting from the 1960s onward, and saw a citizenry that was tuned out and turned off by politics. The only way for Democrats to win was to narrowcast to the few people who were still listening and whose votes were still up for grabs. Bottom line? Ignore the rest, the millions of nonvoters. The essence of Clintonism was this cynical electoral strategy. READ MORE

Paul Begala: Hillary and Jackie:

Her figure, her clothes, her hair, her voice - all of it mocked and savaged in a way unimaginable if she were a man. She has not only endured the jeers and the sneers and the smears, she has triumphed over them. She never answered their hate with rage. She just went on winning. Just like Jackie. READ MORE

While the nominating system probably should be reformed, doing that will not be simple. Most of the easy solutions to fixing the nominating system are neither easy nor solutions. Proposals such as creating a one day nationwide primary, changing the campaign calendar, abolishing caucuses, apportioning state's delegates on a winner take all basis or eliminating superdelegates will not create a clearly better nominating system. READ MORE

The November Presidential election is not going to be close. Barack Obama is going to beat John McCain by 8-10 points in the national popular vote and win 300-350 electoral votes. Barack Obama is going to wipe-out John McCain mano-a-mano. I am far more confident making this prediction than I was in predicting Hillary's demise. There are many reasons why.

Joseph A. Palermo: Change:

He spoke tonight at the very site where the Republicans will hold their canned convention this September. Now that's the Audacity of Hope! Whoever inside the Obama campaign came up with the idea of bringing his most important rally to date to the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul deserves a promotion. There were over 17,000 people inside and another 15,000 outside listening to Obama's speech tonight. Not since the 1968 campaign of Robert F. Kennedy has an American politician inspired such enthusiasm and fervor especially among the young people. READ MORE

As Jeffrey Toobin pointed out on CNN last night, "close" is lovely but second is still not first. Running for president is necessarily a game won by process of elimination.
Obama won that game fair and square, and now all that's left are the negotiations, secret meetings and ardent petitions by Lanny Davis. That's the stuff of cable news going forward -- expect to hear a lot about Charlie Crist, Katherine Sebellius, Jim Webb, Bobby Jindal, Chuck Hagel, Joe Biden, Wes Clark, Tim Kaine, and, thanks to precedent, Jim Johnson -- but for now this is what we noticed from last night's coverage, in no particular order... READ MORE

Steven Weber: In Dreams:

Why not let the presumptive nominee presume to choose his own administration with the same sound judgment with which he assembled the team that waged the powerful, inventive campaign we've witnessed? Why not trust him to do as he's shown, having already remained imperturbably positive despite being kneecapped by the sundry spiritual advisors and invective-hurling knuckleheads that are drawn to anyone who dares activate the up-till-now hopeless millions? Hasn't he already administered his way through terrain that would have hobbled all others to arrive at this historic and epiphanic point in our country's ongoing transformation? By giving in to novelty store suggestions of an Obama-Clinton dream ticket he would turn his hard fought struggle into a clunky, three-legged race one would find at a rickety state fair. READ MORE

Christine Pelosi: It's a new day in America:

Barack Obama has captured the imagination of the American people and majority of the popular delegates from caucuses and primaries from sea to shining sea. Barack Obama has the vision, ideas and values needed to bring positive change to our lives, from economic justice to energy independence to an end to the Iraq war and care for our veterans.READ MORE

The media and party officials are downright giddy over Obama's victory. About America's victory. MSNBC's Chris Matthews and Tim Russert were practically crying over it Tuesday night as they made the nomination victory call. Again, Obama's ascent is historic, and it does give goosebumps, especially to those of us who can remember the often violent racial turmoil of the 60's and 70's. Indeed, America has come a long way since then. But make no mistake: winning the Democratic nomination by the smallest of delegate margins and practically tying on the popular vote, is a far, far cry from being victorious in November. Obama, and therefore the party, has some very real problems before any real dancing can occur. READ MORE

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