Senator Clinton is employing an interesting strategy in South Carolina, effectively ceding the state to Obama's strength among black voters, but not letting him walk away with the win just yet.
As the race between Clinton and Obama has tightened and become increasingly heated, Bill Clinton has spent more and more time on the trail for his wife -- often to mixed reviews. But their South Carolina strategy carries a one-two punch. By not actively campaigning here for most of this week, Clinton is essentially ceding the state to Obama, who, on the strength of the black vote, is ahead here by 10.5 percentage points, according to an average of South Carolina polls by Real Clear Politics. Not making a real effort here allows her to discount an Obama win as uncontested, and hence less meaningful. But by leaving the state to her husband, who won two presidential contests here, she makes it impossible for Obama to relax or focus his energies elsewhere.
Hillary is free to concentrate on the important February 5th Super Tuesday primary states while husband Bill is boxing with Obama in South Carolina.
This week in South Carolina Obama is essentially running against the former President, and he knows it. "I think the South Carolina voters will have to make an assessment in terms of how seriously she's taking the state," Obama told CBN's David Brody yesterday. "She said [in the debate] last night that Bill Clinton wasn't the one running for President, but this is the next primary and he's the one who's staying behind."
It takes a world-class leader to lead our nation (wait a minute, GWB has proven that isn't the case) - well, we want a world-class leader to lead our nation. If Barack can't stand up to Bill Clinton, with all of his many flaws and known weaknesses, why should be we believe he'd hold his own on the world stage against Ahmadinejad or Putin.
Yes, poor Obama will whine that it just isn't fair. Sorry, toots, its time to get over it and show us what you're made of. Barack chose back in October (at a time Clinton was "inevitable") to run not on his own strengths but on Hillary Clinton's weaknesses, and to come out on the attack.
That "fighting" strategy has lifted his campaign from 20 points behind Clinton to even or better in many key states and demographics. As much as he 'd like, he's not going to be able to quit while he's ahead, and in South Carolina the Clinton in his face is named Bill.
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