First of all, let's be clear on one thing -- this race is over. Barack Obama has won. Hillary Clinton has lost. Obama's pledged delegate lead is insurmountable. He leads by about 150 delegates in that category. Hillary Clinton cannot and will not catch up to him.
Clinton's supposed big win last Tuesday amounted to a measly 6 to 7 delegate pick up. If that's a big win, then she needs approximately 20 more of those to get competitive. Obama might have picked up more delegates than that in Mississippi alone last night. He picked up twice as many delegates as that in South Carolina alone.
Even if Senator Clinton won the remaining nine contests with landslide victories, she wouldn't even get to within a 100 pledged delegates of Obama. Even if they re-voted in Michigan and Florida and she won by overwhelming majorities in those states, she still wouldn't be anywhere near Obama's numbers.
Her big claim to fame now is that she wins the big states and the swing states needed for the general election. I don't know why people take these claims seriously. First of all, so what? If she wants to win on big states alone she should move to a country where there are only big states. But in this country, where we have states of all sizes, she has lost.
Second of all, when did Massachusetts, New York and California become swing states? The election she theoretically won in Florida was not contested. So, her claim is that since she won Ohio, why don't we just give her the whole election?
Third of all, the fact that she wins these states in the primaries means absolutely nothing about what would happen in the general election. She won California - does that mean Obama would lose California to the Republican candidate? Of course not. The Democratic candidate will win California no matter what. Rhode Island is the state with the heaviest Democratic vote in the country. Does Hillary's win there mean that the Republican will win in Rhode Island in the fall? Don't be ridiculous.
The reverse of this argument is also true. Just because Obama won Idaho doesn't mean that the Democrats will win Idaho in the general election. These are apples and oranges comparisons. It's not really an argument worth discussing, except for the fact that the Clinton camp has done a good job of getting the press to actually discuss it.
The overall argument that she has lost the pledged delegate count but that she has won the more "important" states is asinine. Come on people, snap out of it. Obama has won nearly twice as many states as she has (29 to 15 in the last count). Are these states not important? Will the general election only be held in the states Hillary picks?
I'd love for her to make this argument in the general election - well, I lost the electorate count, but I won the important states like New York and California! Congratulations. Now go home.
So, why is Hillary Clinton still in the race - and still spending millions of dollars against Barack Obama? It's important to keep in mind that every dollar she spends attacking Obama now is a dollar in John McCain's pocket. This might give McCain a $20-30 million dollar advantage, if not more. He can't raise enough money on his own, but when he combines his attack ads with Hillary's, they're in pretty good shape.
Well, Senator Clinton is still in this race because she thinks she can still win this primary. How? By stealing it. She is willing to overturn the will of the voters by getting enough superdelegates and switching Obama's pledged delegates to come up with a victory.
Remember, pledged delegates are supposed to vote the way their state voted. Earlier in the campaign, Senator Clinton's team said they would never go after Obama's pledged delegates. But now, Hillary Clinton herself in an interview with Newsweek has said that she will in fact do exactly that.
Now imagine if Obama won the elections with a comfortable margin, as he is clearly going to do, and then Hillary Clinton took the nomination anyway at the convention by getting super and pledged delegates to move against their own voters. How do you think that would play?
The convention would be an utter disaster. The election would be a fraud. The party would be in shambles. All so that Senator Clinton can win at all costs. It's too outrageous a thought to even consider the possibility. But that's exactly what the Clinton campaign is banking on right now. Come on, is she really going to do that?
Imagine how Obama's voters - the majority of the party, by the way - would feel if Hillary Clinton was selected by the party elders even if she lost the election. They would, justifiably, feel robbed. To say they would be disenfranchised is a gigantic understatement. Do you think they would show up to vote for Senator Clinton in November?
In the one year Democrats have an excellent chance of winning the presidency, would they really sink their own chances like this? Well, we know the answer to that question.
Speaking for myself, I can't imagine a worse outcome than having another Republican candidate who agrees completely with George Bush win the presidency. But can I really get myself to vote for someone who stole the election in the primaries? I don't think so. So, here's my solution: If Hillary Clinton tries to take this election at the convention by overturning the will of the voters, I will show up there with a pitchfork.
Senator Clinton has to understand that she can't do this. She can't win based on pledged delegates. It is now mathematically impossible. And she can't win without the pledged delegates because it would rip the party apart. So, she has to mercifully come to the conclusion that she cannot win. And every day she stays in the race from here on out is a day she spends money helping John McCain win instead.