This is an exciting night - the night that the Democratic primary ends and, in all likelihood, Obama becomes the nominee. I've got a foot long sub from Subway, a bottle of cheap wine, and my laptop. Time for FUN!
5:21PM - I've posted before that Clinton needed to drop out because there really wasn't a way for her to win, and if I had the chance, that's what I'd tell her today. Even so, I can respect her decision not to withdraw just yet, and definitely understand some of the arguments. Clinton can't win, but Obama hasn't won yet. Florida and Michigan needed to be addressed before she could leave. She deserves to finish out the process. Etc. There are pushbacks to all of those, of course, but I've never been able to understand some Obama supporters' venom against her for staying. There are a lot of people whose entire position is simply that Clinton's a horrible person, and deserves to be whipped or something for daring to stay on so long. To all these people, I say: get a grip. Obama will win tonight, Clinton will say Obama's won, and will start campaigning her heart out for Obama. When she does, I expect a number of people to make a very public mea culpa.
5:23PM - Superdel Rep Maxine Waters switches from Clinton to Obama. Praises Clinton for her work and her campaign, but says "It's time to close ranks." Obama now 30 delegates away.
5:26PM - The coal industry has a lot of commercials on today about the need for clean coal technology as a part of America's energy plan. Intersting.
5:29PM - CNN exit poll says 61% of Clinton supporters would vote for Obama in the general election, less than 20% say they'd vote for McCain, which pushes back against the idea that Obama can't win over her supporters once the nomination's been decided.
5:30PM - CNN on Clinton running as an independent. "Not a snowball's chance in Hades." Huh?
5:37PM - More superdel endorsements, Obama up to 2097, only 21 away from 2118. I hope, I really do, that when he hits 2118 he does so by winning the pledged delegates from South Dakota or Montana, not with supers.
5:38PM - 2098, now only 20 away.
5:43PM - 2102, only 16 away. Ok, I'm officially confused. Exactly what were these supers waiting for? It couldn't have been the winner of popular vote or states, since we don't know that yet, and won't until the polls actually close in the final two states. They waitied until just-almost-kinda the end? Did they just not know until today when they turned on CNN that Obama's infintesimally close?
5:47PM - Obama is giving his speech in the same city, in the same room that McCain will accept the Republican nomination. The man's got balls.
5:50PM - 2106, 12 to go. Again, wtf?
6:00PM - John Cafferty: "You can go to my blog and [while?] away the night time hours there, you should go, it's a fascinating place." Trust me, you just had to see it for yourself. If you had, you'd be laughing your butt off.
6:01PM - Summer thunderstorm! Whee!
6:02PM - Rep James Clyburn: I switched because the nominee "became clear". This really does puzzle me, exactly what did he know this afternoon that he didn't know yesterday, or last week, or last month for that matter?
6:05PM - Clinton's now imfamous "I would be open to the VP" apparently appears to be sourced to a single statement she made to the NY congressional delegation after rep specifically said she needs to be on the ticket to win over latinos. If that's the whole basis for this story today, that's pretty weak.
6:17PM - Just my personal opinion, but an Obama-Clinton "dream ticket" would be an absolute disaster.
6:34PM - Talking Hed sez: Hillary Clinton would be nothing without her husband.
6:35PM - Cafferty nails it: "So we're going to talk about the man who's getting the nomination rather than the husband of the woman who's not going to get the nomination?" About time.
6:41PM - Wolf Blitzer just made an extremely dramatic point of saying Obama's gotten another super. 11 to go.
6:52PM - 2108. 10 to go.
6:53PM - Did CNN just do a closeup on one of their star analysts drawing a picture of a bicycle on the much touted magic wall?
7:02PM - Ok, someone tell me that I didn't just see CNN footage of (Hillary) Clinton signing the ... well endowed chestal area ... of a female supporter.
7:17PM - I don't know who he is, but he's making a good point: a presidential campaign isn't something you just flip a switch and turn off, there are literally thousands of people for whom this campaign is their day job, it's how they feed their families. Now, announcing your support for Obama is a bit different from closing your campaign, and it's a bit irresponsible for Clinton to not make plans (which, to be fair, we don't know that she hasn't done), but it's still a good point. Edwards took weeks to officially shut down his campaign, and announcing the decision publicly was one of the last things to happen.
7:31PM - 2111. 7 to go. Single digits.
7:44PM - 2112. Palindrome. 6 to go. Og ot 9?
7:55PM - Whatever happens tonight, we'll have a choice between a senator, another senator, or a third senator. So much for the senators-can't-win-the-presidency law of politics.
7:58PM - More thunderstorms! Woot!
8:00PM - Wolf Blitzer needs to stop saying the word "momentarily"
8:04PM - 2113. 5 to go. Seriously Wolf, do all of these need to be "MAJOR ANNOUNCMENTS"?
8:10PM - 2114. 4 to go. At least Blitzer didn't interrupt again.
8:28PM - McCain's senior advisor is on CNN explaining how McCain and Bush are quite different on a lot of issues, and in that regard, he's right. McCain and Bush really have disagreed on a number of issues, from energy policy to campaign finance reform. It's also true that McCain has criticized Bush on Iraq, but his criticism has only extended to Bush's tactics. When it comes to strategy, about diplomacy vis a vis military force, how to achieve real change in the world, they're really quite similar, and that's what Obama and his campaign are going to emphasize during the next few months.
8:38PM - McCain's speech is starting. He's praising Clinton pretty eloquently, the first step towards winning over her supporters? So far, stuff about "good change vs bad change", all campaign gobbley gook that you doesn't have anything you can actually disagree with. Blah blah, more gobbley gook. "Respond quickly and effictively to a natural calamaty", that's actually a pretty good quote. I'm starting to think that McCain's choice of New Orleans was designed to out-Democrat the Democrats, at least when it comes to FEMA.
Huh? He just got done saying we need to expand government's ability to protect and help, now he's going on about how government's awful and the source of some problems.
Ooo... NOW he's jabbing Obama. Young and inexperienced, bought into failed ideas, deliberately repeating the (alleged) falsity that he's McBush, etc. "Just getting to know Obama" ... the text is more or less accurate, but seems slimy, somehow. "Iraq strategy is now succeeding" ... um, that's debatable. Not true, not false, but debatable. This message about "letting our troops do the job" and "listening to the commanders on the ground" will be hard to respond to. Obama can do it, but it's going to be tough.
8:52PM - Right in the middle of McCain's speech, the screen goes blank. Stupid Comcast.
8:53PM - MSNBC has the speech on. I don't know what I missed, but now he's going after Obama on spending reform. "That's not change we can believe in...", I don't know what it is, but whenever he's making some kind of attack on Obama, he comes off as really slimy. Obama voted for the 2006 energy bill, McCain voted against it. That's a fair point, and a black mark on Obama's record.
"That's not change we can believe in" is going to be McCain's standard attack against Obama, it seems.
Who's the guy who keeps shouting "OOOOOOOOOOHHHHHHHHHHH"? He did it during the Katrina reference, and just now again.
Taxes. Healthcare. Free trade. Job loss. Some standard GOP talking points.
McCain's going on the offensive on the special interests and lobbyist issue. "That's not change we can believe in." Pot. Kettle. Black.
Good lord, someone stop him now, the man sounds like a broken record.
9:00PM - Both CNN and MSNBC interrupt McCain's speech to project that Obama will win the nomination. Apparently 3 more supers committed during the speech. All the networks have forgotten McCain, they're focusing on Obama.
9:02PM - Anderson Cooper!
Ok, I'm going to go out for a walk in the rain. Obama08!