Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Is Obama Inevitable?

Approximately a month ago, the pundits were entranced by the inevitability argument promulgated by the Clinton Campaign, believing the spoon-fed line that Hillary Clinton was the heir to the White House “throne” and unbeatable. Something has happened since then, actually a lot: The Clinton juggernaut has revealed itself to be a house of cards. Her prodigious fundraising has been unmasked as a traditional operation that basked in the glow of large donors whose contributions have now largely maxed out, leaving the once behemoth campaign struggling for dollars. Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton’s high-powered (and expensive) political team has shown itself to be adept at shooting the candidate in the foot by promoting her as a candidate of experience when the American electorate is looking for an end to the status quo in Washington. At the same time, her charge that Senator Obama was the weaker of the two general election candidates and that he could not appeal to whites and particularly women has been undercut by recent polls. These polls show the Senator from Illinois with a lead over the presumptive Republican nominee, John McCain, while Mrs. Clinton is behind, tied with, or one point ahead of the Senator from Arizona depending on the particular poll. Senator Obama also won over Clinton in North Dakota, Utah, Kansas and other states not known for their diversity, and was significantly victorious over Clinton in the Potomac primaries, receiving a majority of the women’s vote over the Senator from New York.

With super-delegates pledged to Clinton now changing course, unions who were remaining neutral now siding with Obama, newspaper endorsements in favor of the Senator from Illinois continuing unabated, and near endless press coverage regarding the possible collapse of the vaunted Clinton machine, the New York Senator has now become the underdog. The Clinton Campaign shakeup this past week did not help matters, instilling fear in donors and other supporters that the campaign is in deep trouble. At the same time, it provided a sense of near panic to a public that wants reassurance from the former First Lady that she is calm and cool under pressure.

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Michael M. Shapiro, founder of, is an attorney who resides in New Providence, New Jersey. He currently serves as the Editor of The Alternative Press Contact Mike at