Let’s start by being fair to Hillary Clinton. Is it realistic for certain factions within the Democratic Party to expect Senator Clinton to quit when she keeps winning primaries? Ms. Clinton’s double digit win in Ohio, almost double digit win in Pennsylvania and her win in the first part of the Texas two-step primary may be a harbinger of trouble for Barack Obama in the general election. Furthermore, has Barack Obama alienated the voters of Michigan and Florida by essentially blocking a re-vote? Michigan is a must win state for the Democrats and having Barack Obama as their candidate may prove to be fatal in their quest to recapture the White House.
Furthermore, there are $10 million reasons (and counting) for Hillary to stay in the race. Her fundraising acumen has accelerated to the point where she may now be able to compete in the remaining primaries, especially since none are located in major media markets. Still, the delegate math simply makes it impossible for her to overtake Barack Obama since the way delegates are apportioned by the Democrats means that even if Hillary trounces Obama in the popular vote totals, she will not be able to overtake him with the delegate count.
So why is Hillary staying in the race if she has no chance of winning? My theory is that Hillary Clinton is sabotaging Barack Obama’s chances to win the general election. Hillary is smart enough to know that she cannot win the nomination. Furthermore, it would be politically unwise for her to accept any VP offer from Obama and it would not be smart for him to have Hillary on the ticket. If Obama wins and has 2 terms, Hillary Clinton will be 69 years old when her next chance to run would occur. By then, Hillary will be nothing more than an afterthought. The key for her, and by extension her husband, is for Obama to lose big in the fall. My prediction is that Hillary Clinton will officially drop out of the race a week or so prior to the convention and then make a big deal out of showing the nation how unified the Democratic Party is going into the election. After the convention, Hillary and Bill in numerous interviews will make coy references to how they really like John McCain but that Barack Obama would be a better President. This is code to her most ardent supporters that it is OK to vote for John McCain.
Bill Clinton did the exact same thing during the 2004 election. I can still recall Clinton stating, during an interview with Michael Smerconish, that he protected George Bush from the left on Iraq and personally liked him. Of course, he then went on to give a tepid endorsement to John Kerry. The last thing the Clinton’s wanted was for John Kerry to win the election. They were already game planning for 2008. The same holds true today and is even more pronounced because would be her absolute last shot at the White House. Is Hillary Clinton Sabotaging Barack Obama by staying in the race? Of course, but it is only the first step in their destruction of Barack Obama.