Wednesday, January 16, 2008

C plus 13 - post-Michigan and pre-South Carolina and Nevada

Well, I was correct about Romney winning here, but wrong about the margin. He eventually won with 39% versus 30% for McCain and 16% for Huckabee. Hardly a squeaker of a victory! Hillary also won on the Democratic side, but the news for her was not very good. Nobody of any substance other than her (i.e. neither Obama not Edwards) was on the ballot, and she only got 55% of the vote - uncommitted got about 40%. Not good enough. To make it even worse, it looks like she has severely upset the African American part of the electorate - more than 70% of them voted uncommitted last night, and exit polls suggest that they would have voted for Obama if that had been an option. This is grim news for Clinton in two ways. First, if this trend of support is nationwide, it will make winning the nomination difficult at best for Hillary. Second, if she does win, she will somehow have to reconcile with the African American community or they will not come out and vote for her, and without those votes, she is toast in the national election. It may just be me, but I do not think that reconciliation is Hillary's strong suit!
So, what now? Well, the divergence between the party processes continues, with the Democrats having caucuses in Nevada on Saturday and a primary in South Carolina the following Saturday, while the Republicans have both Nevada and South Carolina this Saturday. My guesses? On the Democratic side, Obama wins in Nevada and in South Carolina, the latter with a bigger margin. Edwards fades further into irrelevance, and likely drops out after Florida. However, bear in mind what happened in New Hampshire! On the Republican side, Fred must be first or a close second in South Carolina, and I think he can do it (in fact, I think he will win). Nevada does not seem to have figured much in the Republican psyche, but Romney should win there. That would leave only Rudy Giuliani without a win and he is gearing up to try and take Florida (Tuesday January 29). If he doesn't he will be in trouble.
All in all, it is getting pretty exciting!

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