Clinton has election eve conversion on hunting

WIth elections near so many politicians start to come out in favor of hunting, even in Democratic primaries. Now it is Hillary Clinton's turn:

WAUSAU, WIS. -- At a campaign stop this afternoon, Hillary Clinton’s focus was on the economy and health care but some in the crowd had other things on their minds. Clinton was asked to discuss gun control which prompted Clinton to talk about her days holding a rifle in the cold, shallow waters in backwoods Arkansas.

“I’ve hunted. My father taught me how to hunt. I went duck hunting in Arkansas. I remember standing in that cold water, so cold, at first light. I was with a bunch of my friends, all men. The sun’s up, the ducks are flying and they are playing a trick on me. They said, ‘we’re not going to shoot, you shoot.’ They wanted to embarrass me. The pressure was on. So I shot, and I shot a banded duck and they were surprised as I was,” Clinton said drawing laughter from the crowd. . . .

Emphasis added by me to the word "rifle" in the text. Does Hillary know the difference between a shotgun and a rifle? Does she realize how hard it is to shot a duck with a rifle and to even do it on one's first shot? I doubt it.

Thanks to Ben Zycker for the link.

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My guess: I think that Clinton will win the nomination

This is a tough call, much tougher than most people think. Hillary needs to win Ohio, Pennsylvania and Texas. The polls for Ohio and Pennsylvania actually show Hillary with substantial double digit leads, though Ohio is getting a little tighter. The question is whether the Obama's recent wins will shake her support between now and those primaries. In addition, Karl Rove indicates that Obama may make significant inroads in Texas among Hispanics. I couldn't find any polls for Texas, and that is where things might really matter. Rove did mention that the really bizarre delegate counting rules in the Democratic primary in Texas and that heavily weights African-American votes relative to Hispanics. I guess that I am just assuming that Clinton knows more about what is happening in Texas. If she pulls in those three big states, I think that she will keep the majority she has of super delegates.

Add to all that that Clinton will push for the large Democratic delegations from Florida and Michigan to be seated. If she pushes hard with legal action, it could really produce hard feelings among African-Americans. The more that it seems today that Obama is going to win, the more his supporters will be angry if she gets the nomination. It will be a bloody and difficult win, but the Clintons will do what they can and conditional on Texas, I give her the edge.

All that said, I also think that Obama would be the easier candidate for Republicans to beat in the general. He is the most liberal member of the Senate, and his record will just be too much to defend. Take for example, his opposition to renewing FISA because it would allow us to spy on conversation where foreigners are talking to foreigners. I think that will be hard to explain to people.

UPDATE: I have just come across a poll for Texas and it shows that Obama is in the lead. Obama is ahead 48 to 42 percent. "Hillary Clinton leads Barack Obama among self-described Democrats 47% to 42%. Obama leads Clinton among self-described independents and Republicans 24% to 71%." On the other hand, I wouldn't put too much weight on this right now. The main reason for this is that I am becoming more convinced that she will take Wisconsin. If so, I think that Clinton will take Texas along with Ohio and Pennsylvania. Obama will be edged out because of the super delegates and the seating of the Florida and Michigan delegations.

UPDATE2: Several new polls give Clinton an average of a double digit lead in Texas.

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Some Democrats talking about Al Gore as nominee

John Fund writes in today's WSJ's Political Diary:

Despite the Obama momentum and recent landslides in many states, if Hillary were to win Texas, where there is a very large Hispanic vote, she would have won the four big electorate-rich states: New York, California, Florida, and Texas. That would be a strong case for many undecided Democratic superdelegates to support her notwithstanding Mr. Obama's strong showing.

What happens in a deadlocked convention? If neither candidate throws in the towel and neither can get a majority of delegates, one option is a brokered convention, where both candidates step aside for a compromise candidate. That's the way smoke-filled, dealmaking conventions used to work. One name keeps resurfacing as the ideal brokered candidate: Al Gore. Many Democratic pundits still believe the Oscar and Nobel Peace Prize winner would have the best chances against the GOP in November. His record is not nearly as far left as Senator Clinton's or Senator Obama's and he may stand a better chance of winning independent voters than either of them.

But a problem with this scenario, as one Democratic insider tells me, is that Al Gore and Hillary Clinton are "mortal enemies." She would rather sleep on a bed of coals than hand the nomination to her husband's vice president, whom she constantly squabbled with in the White House. . . .

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Bitter fireworks about ready to blow up among Democrats

Shades of the Florida 2000 election were discussed today in the WSJ:

For over seven years the Democratic Party has fulminated against the Electoral College system that gave George W. Bush the presidency over popular-vote winner Al Gore in 2000. But they have designed a Rube Goldberg nominating process that could easily produce a result much like the Electoral College result in 2000: a winner of the delegate count, and thus the nominee, over the candidate favored by a majority of the party's primary voters.

Or this:

Indeed, it has already been reported that Sen. Clinton will demand that the convention seat delegates from Michigan and Florida, two states whose delegates have been disqualified by the party for holding January primaries in defiance of party rules. The candidates agreed not to campaign in those states. But Sen. Clinton opted to keep her name on the Michigan primary ballot, and staged a primary-day victory visit to Florida, winning both of those unsanctioned primaries. Her campaign is arguing that the delegates she won in each state be recognized despite party rules and notwithstanding her commitment not to compete in those primaries. Of course. "Count every vote." . . .

My understanding from a well-placed friend is that the Hillary campaign is talking about actually bringing a lawsuit in Florida to force the delegates to be seated.

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Hillary's campaign imploding?

Is Hillary Clinton's campaign falling apart:

The day she admitted she'd written herself a check for $5 million, Obama's people crowed they'd just raised $3 million. But then his staff is happy. They're all getting paid. . . .

These announcements from the Clinton campaign were associated with a big drop in the probability of her winning.

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The Emptiness of Campaign Finance Reform

The Drudge Report mentions that the Clinton's may be spending their own money now on Hillary's campaign. Note how the WSJ recently reported:

Former President Clinton stands to reap around $20 million -- and will sever a politically sensitive partnership tie to Dubai -- by ending his high-profile business relationship with the investment firm of billionaire friend Ron Burkle. . . .

Obviously Clinton has gotten a lot of money from other sources so there is no need to single out Burkle, but Burkle obviously can't donate $10 or $12 million to Clinton's campaign. Yet, if he pays Clinton for work that isn't very obvious, Clinton can then turn around and spend it on a campaign. Does it really matter that Burkle can't give the money directly to Clinton?

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Hillary versus Obama on Delegates

I was looking at the delegate totals for the Democrats and while Hillary is ahead in total delegates, her lead is entirely driven by Super Delegates. Among delegates won in the primaries and caucuses, Hillary won 48 and Obama 63. The thing with these super delegates is that they can change their minds. If we had the less compressed schedule for primaries that we had in 2004 or 2000, Obama would easily win. I don't know whether he will have enough steam by Tuesday.

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Clinton campaign tactics

John Fund writes this at the WSJ's Political Diary:

Mr. Obama is indeed frustrated by the attacks on his character, as he made clear to David Brody of the Christian Broadcasting Network. What peeves him most are mysterious emails circulating among voters that claim he is actually a Muslim and has sympathy with the ideas of the radical Louis Farrakhan, the leader of the Nation of Islam. Mr. Obama says the charges are preposterous.

"We have no way of tracing where these emails come from, but what I know is they come in waves, and they somehow appear magically wherever the next primary or caucus is, although they're also being distributed all across the country," he told Mr. Brody. "But the volume increases as we get closer to particular elections. That indicates to me that this is something that is being used to try to raise doubts or suspicions about my candidacy." . . .

More on the Clinton campaign can be found here, where Ed Schultz accuses Clinton of lying. Obama pretty much says the same thing here, where he says Clinton "was making things up."

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Democratic Presidential Candidates Talk About Guns

In the debate in Nevada the other night, Tim Russert asked the democrats whether they supported licensing for guns. Clinton and Obama said it would they weren't going to push for licensing, but their reason was that it would generate too much political opposition -- implying that if the opposition went down, they would push for it. Edwards said clearly that he was against licensing.

Hillary Clinton though said that "I believe in the Second Amendment. . . . But I also believe that we can common-sensically approach this." If Russert was at all on his feet, he would have asked her whether she thought that the DC gun ban, soon to be going before the U.S. Supreme Court was unconstitutional. It would be a tough question. If she said it was unconstitutional, she would get a lot of Dems upset. If it was constitutional, the question is what would be the benefit from saying you believe in the Second Amendment?

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Democrats and Hispanics

Is there some fraying of the Democrat's coalition? John Fund at WSJ's Political Diary writes:

Sergio Bendixen, one of Hillary Clinton's pollsters, claims Hispanics back his candidate because of her stand on health care and affinity for the Clinton presidency of the 1990s. He told reporters that he viewed Hispanics as Mrs. Clinton's "firewall" against an assault by Barack Obama. "The Hispanic voter -- and I want to say this very carefully -- has not shown a lot of willingness or affinity to support black candidates," he added.

That comment upset Team Obama, which quickly jumped at the opportunity to tarnish the Clinton image after Clinton allies in the Nevada teachers union sued to close down polling places set up in Las Vegas casinos to allow Hispanic casino workers easily to participate in that state's caucus this Saturday. A federal judge threw the suit out yesterday, but the incident left a bad taste in the mouths of many Hispanics.

Yesterday, Obama-supporting labor unions began airing Spanish-language radio ads attacking the lawsuit in Nevada. "Hillary Clinton does not respect our people," the ad says in Spanish. "Hillary Clinton is shameless. But Sen. Obama is defending our right to vote. Sen. Obama wants our votes. He respects our votes, our community, and our people."

Clinton supporter Dolores Huerta, an Hispanic labor leader, denounced the ad as "pathetic" and claimed it was an attempt to conceal Mr. Obama's total lack of support in the Hispanic community. "I have yet to find even one worker -- a Latino worker -- who is supporting Barack Obama," she told Politico.com.

Nevada votes tomorrow, and estimates suggest that 45% of casino workers on the Las Vegas Strip are Hispanic. We'll be able to see just how accurate Ms. Huerta is in her prediction by looking at the results from caucus sites in those casinos.

If you believe Hillary's pollster, Obama winning the nomination could alienate Hispanics. If one listens to the traded charges over racism in the campaign, a Hillary win might alienate some blacks. I wonder if this would almost ensure that if Hillary wins the nomination, she would have to pick Obama for the VP position. If Obama wins, would he have to pick RIchardson? You might have heard it here first: Obama/Richardson for the Dems.

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Is Romney the Weakest of the Possibly Republican Nominees?

If you believe the averages at Real Clear Politics, Romney is the weakest possible nominee. Giuliani, Huckabee, and Thompson are virtually the same. One thing that I will say for Thompson is that given he has gotten much less favorable publicity than Giuliani or Huckabee (particularly Huckabee), he might do relatively better than them farther down the road.

Average difference in races between Clinton or Obama and Republican

McCain . . . . +3 Percent

Giuliani . . . . -8.8 percent

Huckabee . . -9.3 percent

Thompson . . -9.75 percent

Romney . . . . -13.9 percent

Between Clinton and Obama it isn't even close. Obama is a much stronger candidate than Hillary. I haven't figured out the average difference but it looks like about 7 percent on average. Plus every Republican would apparently lose to Obama. One warning with all these numbers is that the general election is a long ways away, but these are big differences.

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Am I missing something here?: I thought that Democrats were supposed to get upset with anything that increased the cost of voting

From John Fund at the WSJ.com's Political Diary:

[Clinton] is scrambling for every possible advantage -- down to having her supporters file lawsuits to close some poling places -- in Nevada's Democratic caucus this coming Saturday.

How is this consistent with Democrat Party rhetoric on voting? We can't even have voter IDs because they might discourage people from voting.

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Clinton's crying made her appear sympathetic

I thought that this "crying" was planned yesterday and I believe it even more so now. This was Hillary Clinton's Sister Souljah moment. They wanted to make her look human and sympathetic. It just amazes me that they could achieve this with what was probably staged.

Edward Morrissey asks
"Did independents break Republican instead of Democrat, assuming that Obama had the race sewn up?"
It certainly seems possible, though you would probably need an exit poll to determine if this is true. I guess that I believe that the effect that I mentioned above was the important effect.

UPDATE: From John Fund at OpinionJournal's Political Diary:
A senior Obama adviser told Politico.com that he had no other explanation for his candidate's startling loss. "Did her choking up have a positive effect among women? Did they say, 'We are not going to run her out of the race here?'" the adviser asked. "There is no other reason we can see. Every poll showed us even with Clinton with women, and then we lose women to her. There was a big gender gap that didn't show up until yesterday."

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Clinton's Muskie Moment, Or was it planned?

If it was not an Ed Muskie moment — Mrs. Clinton did not cry (or look like she was crying) — she was certainly on the verge of it after a woman asked her, at a round table discussion at a coffee shop here, how she managed to get out of bed and soldier through each day.

How will voters react to a candidate who cries about having a hard time in the campaign? If it was a man, he would be out of the race very quickly. With a woman, will people feel sorry for her? Do they think that she needs to show even more toughness?

Here is the big question. I hate to be really cynical about all this, but with the desire to make Hillary appear more human and likable is there any chance that her crying was planned? I guess that I wouldn't be surprised.

UPDATE: In the interest of fairness, here is Clinton's response to the concern that this display of emotion was staged. If you go to that link, Major Garrett has a video up of him asking her directly about this.

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Sockpuppets used by Hillary Clinton Campaign

While it has gotten mentioned twice on the NY Times' blog and once on a Washington Post blog, the fact that the Clinton campaign has been using sockpuppets to push her campaign doesn't seem to be worth mentioning in even one single print publication or main media website. A Google search tonight on "Clinton Sockpuppet" or "Clinton 'Sock Puppet'" turned up no other hits other than to the two NY Times' blog posts using Google News. I guess that I thought that there would be at least one mention in the print or television media, but I guess that this is not deemed to be very important.

1) Here is the original post on December 13th:
BlueHampshire.com, a progressive site in the Granite State, has found that several Clinton staff members slipped into sock-puppet mode to beef up the pro-Clinton diary recommendations on its site.

The Caucus learned of this through techpresident.com, which is surprised that anybody still uses sock puppets.

“I’m still amazed that anyone with a basic knowledge of computers would think that they operate anonymously from a campaign office,” Joshua Levy writes. “Haven’t we learned anything from Wikipedia?”

The Caucus too is shocked — shocked! — at the use of sock puppets. We have nothing like that on our site, right readers? We thought sock puppets were “in” for about as long as Paris Hilton’s stay in jail.

In any case, BlueHampshire handled the whole thing with class and their story says a lot about maintaining site integrity in these wild and wooly times.

Blue Hampshire’s Dean Barker writes that the site administrators grew suspicious when they saw that several users had signed up in quick succession. They then discovered that they all used the same IP address, which is registered to the Clinton campaign.

2) Here is the entire reference on December 20th to her campaign's sockpuppet postings:

‘Vote for Me. I’m a Sock Puppet.’
You may have seen that some Hillary Clinton “sock puppets” were recently outed on a New Hampshire blog, to the campaign’s great embarrassment. A sock puppet, for those of who you aren’t immersed in blog culture, is what they call someone who pretends to be commenting as a regular voter but who is in fact posting propaganda. . . .

Nathalie Guyol writes: I hope you can find out (and publish, if you do) how many Iowans would support Hillary Clinton if Bill Clinton did not exist. I suspect a huge preponderance would not have even given her serious consideration.

Good question. I say we get that car that Christopher Lloyd had in “Back to the Future,” go back to the Yale Law School library in the spring of 1971 and ask Bill Clinton for a lighter at exactly the moment that Hillary first walks by. It could work. Barring that, we’ll never know.

The Washington Post mention can be found here. Here is all the blog commentary that I could find here, here, here, and here. At least this is all the blogs that gave me a hit for "Clinton Sockpuppet" after the beginning of December.

Thanks to Joe Olson for sending these links to me.

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Why Hillary might be in real trouble


Prediction: Hillary Clinton to come in third in Iowa

Edwards and Clinton are tied for second, but Edwards appears to be every Democrat's second choice. If a candidate doesn't have at least 15 percent of the voters at a Caucus site, those voters have to choose another candidate. I don't think that Hillary will pick up many votes there, but Edwards will.

So what will this do to her supposed invincibility? What will this do to her very narrow leads in NH and South Carolina? The polls showing her far ahead in Michigan are over a month old and I am not sure that they are worth very much right now.

Barack Obama is the top 2008 United States presidential contender for Democratic Party supporters in Iowa, according to a poll by Research 2000 released by the Quad City Times. 33 per cent of respondents in the Hawkeye State would vote for the Illinois senator in January’s caucus.

New York senator Hillary Rodham Clinton and former North Carolina senator John Edwards are tied for second with 24 per cent, followed by New Mexico governor Bill Richardson with nine per cent, Delaware senator Joe Biden with three per cent, Ohio congressman Dennis Kucinich with one per cent, and Connecticut senator Chris Dodd also with one per cent. . . .

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Oops . . . Hillary Caught Planting Questions in Audience

This has not been a good couple of weeks for her campaign. Not only did Clinton plant the questions, but the beginning of her answer made it worse by her claiming that this question was something everyone wanted to ask. If so, why did she plant it?

Democratic presidential frontrunner Hillary Clinton’s campaign admitted Friday that it planted a global warming question in Newton, Iowa, Tuesday during a town hall meeting to discuss clean energy. . . . .

"After her speech, Clinton accepted questions. But according to Grinnell College student Muriel Gallo-Chasanoff ’10, some of the questions from the audience were planned in advance. 'They were canned,' she said. Before the event began, a Clinton staff member approached Gallo-Chasanoff to ask a specific question after Clinton’s speech. 'One of the senior staffers told me what [to ask],' she said.

"Clinton called on Gallo-Chasanoff after her speech to ask a question: what Clinton would do to stop the effects of global warming. Clinton began her response by noting that young people often pose this question to her before delving into the benefits of her plan.

"But the source of the question was no coincidence — at this event 'they wanted a question from a college student,' Gallo-Chasanoff said." . . . . .

We after saying that it was an unusual event and not something that would happen again, it turns out that the Clinton Campaign had planted a question at another event:

Clinton's Iowa campaign confirmed to Fox News that one of its staff discussed questions with Mitchell before her April 2 event, but denied attempting to plant a pro-Clinton question.

Mo Elliethee, spokesman for Clinton's campaign in Iowa, told Fox that Hayler and Mitchell "had a previous relationship" and that a discussion about Clinton arose out of a normal conversation between two people who knew each other well.

"They had a previous relationship and were talking before the event and the topic of the senator's position on Iraq came up and Geoffrey said he had some questions," Elliethee said. "Chris suggested Geoffrey ask a question."

Mitchell, however, said that he and Hayler did not know each other personally before the event.

"I had no previous relationship with him," said Mitchell. "I knew his name and by name only as some who worked for Sen. Evan Bayh. But we didn't know each other and I had never met him before this event."

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Holman W. Jenkins Jr. on Tipgate

Holman W. Jenkins Jr. at OpinionJournal's Political Diary on "Tipgate Update"

National Public Radio continues to birddog allegations that Hillary Clinton failed to leave a tip after visiting the Toledo Maid-Rite diner in Iowa for breakfast last month. The Clinton campaign responded to yesterday's report by saying it did leave a tip -- $100 on a $157 tab. Also yesterday a Clinton staffer turned up at the diner and handed a $20 bill to Anita Esterday, the waitress who had waited on Mrs. Clinton and mentioned (in passing) to a radio interviewer that she hadn't received a tip.

The plot thickens. She tells NPR that yesterday's staffer said the tip had been included in the credit card payment. However, the credit card receipt, when examined, was apparently bereft of tip. So the staffer then opined the tip must have been left as cash with the expectation the diner crew would divvy it up. Where's the Zapruder film? Her aides were seated at tables around the diner, but Mrs. Clinton was sitting at the counter. Ms. Esterday doubts her colleagues stiffed her for her share of the tip. The restaurant's manager tells AP it may have happened.

As the truth recedes into the region of mist and shadows where many things Clinton reside, another question suggests itself: Wouldn't it have been better for the campaign simply to have said, "If we didn't leave a tip, it surely was an oversight, and we'll rectify it immediately?" What good can possibly come from quibbling with a waitress over such a trivial matter?

But the most cringe-inducing aspect was reporter David Greene, in a scripted dialogue with an NPR host this morning, bathing himself in recrimination for failing to check with the Clinton campaign before running the tip anecdote yesterday in a longer report about how campaigns impact the lives of local folks when they land in town.

Apparently, this is not the first time that Hillary has been accused of stiffing waitresses on tips.

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John Edwards Ad Effectively Smashes Hillary Over Inconsistencies.

Hillary Clinton is shown to be all over the map here.

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What if Hillary's Campaign Implodes?

Hillary has had a relatively easy race so far. The other Democrats have treated her very gingerly. It has almost been as if they were afraid to anger her or possibly even running for the VP nomination. The debates have also protected her from answering tough questions, at least until this past debate. The problem that the Democrats face is that it is too late for anyone new to really enter the race with the possible exception of Al Gore. I have always felt that the Democratic field has been pretty weak. O'Bama is not a strong candidate. His talks and answers to questions are extremely wordy and not very forceful. Edwards is probably too damaged to win the nomination. So what is left after that? Not much. Will Dems rally around Hillary because she is still the best candidate in the race? Will they quickly try to push her out and get Gore to run? Hillary's negatives were already at 49 percent. Her move now to seek protection in being a woman must be a real problem for many.

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Backlash by Women Because They Feel People have been Attacking Hillary?

Shades of Rick Lazio's campaign all over again? I guess that I thought that women think that Hillary was tougher than this.

The criticisms followed Penn’s assertion that Clinton was “unflappable.” He also said criticisms from Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) and former Sen. John Edwards (D-N.C.) would backfire and that he was already “detecting some backlash,” particularly among female voters.

I am not sure that Obama or Edwards would have had a chance with these voters in the first place.

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One Vote Hillary Probably didn't Want to Win

At first I thought that Hillary having the most choosen mask for Halloween would be a plus, but given that her mask was primarily picked by Republican men, it seems a pretty safe bet that those wearing the mask are doing so because they really believe it to be scary. Giuliani probably shouldn't be too thrilled either, but it would be very informative if we were given the same type of breakdown in terms of who was wearing it.

Clinton was the choice of four in 10 men and one-third of women. While a predictable two-thirds of Republicans picked her, she also was the choice of 18 percent of Democrats. Among members of her own party, that made her second only to Giuliani as the scariest costume.

About one-third of independents, nearly half of whites and just over half of conservatives selected her.

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Zogby Online Poll claims that 50 percent of Voters would never vote for Hillary Clinton

I guess that I am a little dubious of this type of poll, though Zogby claims that these surveys are reasonably accurate. However, one thing to take into account is that some candidates may have low numbers simply because they are not that well known. People won't say that they would never vote for someone whom they don't know much about. That said, Hillary's numbers seem to be going up, not down, and at 50 percent, they are dangerously high. My guess is that this will be a very close presidential race. If Hillary wins, she will do so with only around 50 to 53 percent of the vote.

The online survey of 9,718 likely voters nationwide showed that 50 percent said Clinton would never get their presidential vote. This is up from 46 percent who said they could never vote for Clinton in a Zogby International telephone survey conducted in early March. Older voters are most resistant to Clinton — 59 percent of those age 65 and older said they would never vote for the New York senator, but she is much more acceptable to younger voters: 42 percent of those age 18-29 said they would never vote for Clinton for president. . . . .

On the other side, Fred Thompson has the fewest number of people who say that they will not vote for him among major candidates from both parties.

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Hillary Clinton listened in on illegal tapes of telephone calls

Republicans are focusing on an allegation in a recent book by two Pulitzer Prize-winning reporters, which suggests Clinton listened to a secretly recorded conversation between political opponents.

In their book about Clinton’s rise to power, Her Way, Don Van Natta Jr., an investigative reporter at The New York Times, and Jeff Gerth, who spent 30 years as an investigative reporter at the paper, wrote: “Hillary’s defense activities ranged from the inspirational to the microscopic to the down and dirty. She received memos about the status of various press inquiries; she vetted senior campaign aides; and she listened to a secretly recorded audiotape of a phone conversation of Clinton critics plotting their next attack.

“The tape contained discussions of another woman who might surface with allegations about an affair with Bill,” Gerth and Van Natta wrote in reference to Clinton’s husband, former President Bill Clinton. “Bill’s supporters monitored frequencies used by cell phones, and the tape was made during one of those monitoring sessions.”

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Clinton Campaign getting only a small amount of flak from having Sandy Berger as an advisor

One would think that there would be more of an outrage over Sandy Berger being brought on as an advisor to Hillary Clinton.

Fox News has a report on this, but I couldn't see anything on this on CNN, MSNBC, or the New York Times.

Sandy Berger, the former national security adviser to President Bill Clinton who was convicted after he stole and destroyed top secret documents, is now advising Sen. Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign, FOX News confirms.

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The more costly the story, the less likely it is to be published: Campaigns in Action

Early this summer, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton’s campaign for president learned that the men’s magazine GQ was working on a story the campaign was sure to hate: an account of infighting in Hillaryland.

So Clinton’s aides pulled a page from the book of Hollywood publicists and offered GQ a stark choice: Kill the piece, or lose access to planned celebrity coverboy Bill Clinton.

Despite internal protests, GQ editor Jim Nelson met the Clinton campaign’s demands, which had been delivered by Bill Clinton’s spokesman, Jay Carson, several sources familiar with the conversations said.

GQ writer George Saunders traveled with Clinton to Africa in July, and Clinton is slated to appear on the cover of GQ’s December issue, in which it traditionally names a “Man of the Year,” according magazine industry sources.

And the offending article by Atlantic Monthly staff writer Josh Green got the spike. . . . .

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Democrats can't distance themselves from MoveOn.org

Democrats refuse to criticize MoveOn.org's attack ad on General Petraeus.

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Why isn't the press covering Norman Hsu as the Democrat's Jack Abramoff?

Of course, Jack Abramoff gave money to both Republicans and Democrats, but the press played it as a purely Republican scandal. Hsu is on the run again and I couldn't find a story about this on CNN. If it was Abramoff, I believe that this story would get round the clock coverage.

California businessman Norman Hsu, a former New York apparel executive and major contributor to Democratic candidates and causes, failed to appear for a bail reduction hearing Wednesday, leading to speculation that he again is a fugitive from the law, FOX News has learned. . . . .

--Hillary Clinton is keeping virtually all the money raised by Hsu for her campaign. Hsu "is listed as one of the top 20 Democratic fundraisers in the country and is one of Clinton's "HillRaisers" -- people who rustle up at least $100,000 for Clinton's campaign, The Wall Street Journal reports." The money she is keeping is the money that Hsu raised for her campaign, but the problems with this money is pretty obvious:

On top of that, among those who have "bundled" their contributions along with Hsu's is one San Francisco family of seven adults whose home is small and under the airport flight path, jobs are average and $213,000 in donations are closely coordinated with Hsu's.

Hsu's relationship to the Paw family apparently goes back a decade, and Winkle Paw, 35, is an employee of Hsu's New York companies, The Wall Street Journal was first to report. Barcella told The Los Angeles Times the Paws have their own cash, and "Norman never reimbursed anyone for their contribution."

Another New York family of three that runs a plastics packaging plant in Pennsylvania and is tied to Hsu donated more than $200,000 in the last three years, the Times states.

Clinton adviser Howard Wolfsen told The Times that Hsu has been a longtime donor to the party: "During Mr. Hsu's many years of active participation in the political process, there has been no question about his integrity or his commitment to playing by the rules, and we have absolutely no reason to call his contributions into question or to return them."

-- Democratic Representative Patrick Kennedy is keeping his donations from Hsu.

So apparently on are many others. My own belief is the very fact that so many democrats are keeping this money shows that there hasn't been the same pressure on them as there was on the Republicans. Is Hsu merely serving as a conduit for money from China? He is a Hong Kong businessman.

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Democratic Presidential Race Getting Tighter Where it Counts


Hillary seeks to set up Public Service Academy

U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton said Saturday that, if elected president, she will call on "a new generation of Americans to serve." . . .

Clinton, who has been elected to the U.S. Senate twice from New York, said she wants to create a public service academy designed to inspire young Americans to serve others. . . . .

Has she heard of public policy schools? The Harris School at the University of Chicago, the Kennedy School at Harvard, Wharton's Public Policy and Management Department, etc. What does she think universities in general do regarding social science or public policy studies? What is her concern over the content of the classes at these places? Obviously the vast majority of faculty are liberals, but does she think that the Federal government needs more direct control over what is taught in these schools? This seems like an attempt by Clinton to have even more control over what is taught to students who are planning on making a career of working in government.

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What Feminist Candidate?


Possibly this explains why Hillary was recently Attacking Fred Thompson

It is amazing to see that Hillary's negatives are at 48 percent. Will her campaigning cause them to rise back up above 50 percent? My guess is that this means that 2008 will be one of the all time nastiest presidential campaigns. If she can't get above a certain level, the best thing to do will be to tear down the other guy.

Front-running Democrat Hillary Clinton can do no better than tie unannounced Republican candidate Fred Thompson in the latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey.

Asked whom they would vote for in a head to head match-up, 45 percent said Sen. Clinton and 45 percent chose former Sen. Thompson, with 5 percent saying they would vote for another candidate and the remainder unsure.

Clinton also outpolls Mitt Romney in a head to head race, 46 percent to 42 percent. But Clinton has lost a net five points against both Thompson and Romney since a survey conducted in early June.

In the latest Rasmussen survey, 49 percent of voters said they have a favorable opinion of Hillary, and 48 percent have an unfavorable opinion – including 30 percent who have a "very unfavorable” opinion of the former first lady.

That’s more than 10 points higher than any other current candidate.

"Because Clinton generates such strong feelings, all general election match-ups involving her are competitive,” a release from Rasmussen stated.

Curiously, that’s true even if the Republican candidate is unknown. Clinton’s support stays between 45 percent and 50 percent when matched against any of seven potential Republican candidates.

And Clinton’s GOP opponent earns between 41 percent and 46 percent of the vote regardless of who the Republican is.

Rasmussen adds: "If Clinton is the nominee, third party candidates could make the difference. It is hard to see Clinton winning a majority of the vote, but it is also hard to see her falling much below the mid-40s in terms of popular support. . . . .

UPDATE: Yet another apparent attack by Hillary on Thompson is discussed here:

The AP, taking their cue from the new because-she-said-so story offered by the L.A.Times, has run with a short clip on a story that claims Fred Thompson was working as a lobbyist for an abortion agency in 1991, giving the hearsay evidence against him but not offering the meat of his against the claim. The result is that the AP offers more "evidence" against Thompson than it does for him making it too easy to conclude he is "guilty" of the charge of lobbying for an abortion advocacy organization.

The AP did a wonderful job making this story seem more cut and dried than it really is, of course, but the fact is, this claim of Thompson's supposed lobbying for the National Family Planning and Reproductive Health Association is nothing but an unproven (and maybe unprovable) claim against Thompson made by people who are well-known, far left activists and heavy contributors to the Hillary Clinton for President campaign. Naturally, neither the AP nor the L.A.Times wastes any time to detail the history of those making these claims against Thompson, leaving their relevant backgrounds completely out of the story. . . . .

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Hillary seems most worried about facing Fred Thompson

Is this the first Hillary Clinton attack on a Republican presidential candidate? If so, is it to help her with Democrats? Hurt Thompson (her distortion of what he was saying doesn't seem to go very far)? Or actually help Thompson by making him standout relative to other Republicans? Given that I think that Thompson is the strongest Republican candidate, I guess that I vote for hurting Thompson.

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Taking a swipe at a potential GOP presidential rival, Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton on Saturday criticized Fred Thompson for suggesting Cuban immigrants pose a terrorist threat.

"I was appalled when one of the people running for or about to run for the Republican nomination talked about Cuban refugees as potential terrorists," Clinton told Hispanic elected officials. "Apparently he doesn't have a lot of experience in Florida or anywhere else, and doesn't know a lot of Cuban-Americans." . . . .

Responding to a query Saturday, one Thompson press aide, Burson Snyder, referenced that post Thursday in which Thompson said, "Our national security is too important an issue to let folks twist words around for a one-day headline. Cuban-Americans are among the staunchest opponents of illegal immigration, and especially so when its sponsored by the Castro regime." . . . .

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Dick Morris & Eileen McGann Explain Hillary's Views on Iraq: It is all clear to me now!

FOR those who are too obtuse to understand Sen. Hillary Clinton's simple and clear position on Iraq, the following is an attempt to summarize it:

* She voted in the Senate for H.J. Res. 114, the "Authorization of the Use of Military Force Against Iraq," in October 2002. But now she wants to repeal it. Why? Because, according to Hillary, President Bush misinterpreted the "Authorization of the Use of Military Force Against Iraq" resolution to mean that the use of military force against Iraq had been authorized by Congress.
* At the time of her vote, she stated that her vote for the troop authorization bill was made "with conviction . . . as being in the best interests of the country."

* But once the war became unpopular, Hillary claimed that she hadn't really voted to send troops to Iraq when she voted for the resolution authorizing the use of military force in Iraq.

No, according to Sen. Clinton, all the "Authorization of the Use of Military Force Against Iraq" really did was to toughen the support we were already giving to United Nations inspectors who were looking for weapons of mass destruction. Although the text of the resolution never mentions a single word about strengthening the U.N. inspectors, Hillary believed that was the purpose of the bill. . . .

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Did Hillary raise more money than OBama?