Why she hangs on…

Hillary has written a letter to The Daily News in New York saying her remarks about Robert F. Kennedy were taken out of context “by some”. “Some” have construed that as her accusing the Obama camp of ‘fanning the flames’ of this “controversy.”

Hillary’s aides are out saying that the campaign of Barack Obama is partly responsible for fanning the flames. Never mind that Obama himself came out with a statement saying that she got careless in her statement due to the rigors of the campaign, and that she never intended for it to be interpreted in the way it was.

I blame the aides — especially that Howard Wolfson.

Hillary’s 1992 June PrimaryAnalogy

All serious competition to Bill Clinton had dropped out in March of 1992, and everyone was rallying around him by April. He didn’t secure the nomination until June of 1992, but he was already considered the nominee almost three months earlier. By June of 1992, there was nobody running against him.

Besides, the primary season didn’t start until mid-February, and this year it started at the beginning of January. In 1968, the primary season didn’t start until March 12th. The fact that it was still going on in June then would be like this year’s race still going on in March.

Hillary’s 1968 June Primary Analogy

In 1968, only 13 states held primaries — the party bosses controlled the delegates. That is why it was possible for Vice President Hubert H. Humphrey to secure the nomination for having won ZERO primaries.

In fact, there was no guarantee that if RFK had walked out of the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles that night on June 6, 1968 that he would have actually won the party’s nomination. Hubert Humphrey had the institutional control over the party and the support of people such as Mayor Tate of Philadelphia and Mayor Richard Daley Sr. in Chicago.

But it is the points of her letter that I am more interested in here.

I am running because I still believe I can win on the merits. Because, with our economy in crisis, our nation at war, the stakes have never been higher – and the need for real leadership has never been greater – and I believe I can provide that leadership.

Unfortunately, the majority of the country believes that Obama is winning on those same merits. He is the one who is in the lead on all of the counts.

I am not unaware of the challenges or the odds of my securing the nomination – but this race remains extraordinarily close, and hundreds of thousands of people in upcoming primaries are still waiting to vote. As I have said so many times over the course of this primary, if Sen. Obama wins the nomination, I will support him and work my heart out for him against John McCain. But that has not happened yet.

Sure it is close. But the margins are greater than the number of delegates left, and even if you were to assume that you would win 100 percent of the remaining races, you still wouldn’t have enough to overtake Obama’s lead in pledged delegates. But it is good to hear that you do intend on supporting Obama when he wins the nomination. The question is, do you intend on waiting until the convention is over before you start supporting him, or are you going to give him a fighting chance of winning by supporting him when the last primary ballot is cast?

I am running because I believe staying in this race will help unite the Democratic Party. I believe that if Sen. Obama and I both make our case – and all Democrats have the chance to make their voices heard – in the end, everyone will be more likely to rally around the nominee.

Do you see the Democratic party uniting right now? All I see is the opposite. The longer you stay in the race against all odds, the more we are being torn up. Perhaps you haven’t noticed the fighting going on in blogs like this, where each is rallying around their own candidate. The longer you stay in the race means that the less time you have of patching things up before the November election. You have caused some deep wounds in the way you’ve used general election tactics against a primary opponent.

I am running because my parents did not raise me to be a quitter – and too many people still come up to me at my events, grip my arm and urge me not to walk away before this contest is over. More than 17 million Americans have voted for me in this race – the most in presidential primary history.

So this IS about you. Did your parents talk to you about futility?

Funny thing about math. When you are behind in the numbers that actually count — in this case the number of delegates — it means just that: behind. If the margin between the two candidates is larger than the number left to be awarded, it means you are still behind. That translates into a loss.

It doesn’t matter that 17 million Americans voted for you. 17 million other Americans voted for your opponent. Of course your number is counting a group of Americans whose votes have been disqualified because the state didn’t follow the established rules — that both you and your opponent agreed to. You are also ignoring the fact that because your opponent followed those rules, he didn’t campaign in either state and in one of those states he wasn’t even on the ballot. But you cheated the system in Florida and held “fund raisers” just before their primary.

But let’s assume for a moment that you did win the “popular vote”. That doesn’t mean anything, does it? The nominee is not picked by the popular vote, they are picked by the number of delegates awarded.

I am running for all those women in their 90s who’ve told me they were born before women could vote, and they want to live to see a woman in the White House. For all the women who are energized for the first time, and voting for the first time. For the little girls – and little boys – whose parents lift them onto their shoulders at our rallies, and whisper in their ears, “See, you can be anything you want to be.” As the first female candidate in this position, I believe I have a responsibility to finish this race.

Ah, the feminist vote. In other words, in your quest for equality, you want us to decide our vote on the fact that youare a woman, and not the one more qualified for the job? By that same token, should Barack Obama write a letter using the point that he is running for all of those black men and women whose families lived through slavery and those who lived through Jim Crow would see a black man in the White House?

Notice how he isn’t pointing that out right now? No, he is running on his merits, and that is what you should be doing. “Vote for me because I am a woman” isn’t a qualification.

I am running for all the men and women I meet who wake up every day and work hard to make a difference for their families. People who deserve a shot at the American Dream – the chance to save for college, a home and retirement; to afford quality health care for their families; to fill the gas tank and buy the groceries with a little left over each month.

But we are all going for Obama for the same reasons. He has more delegates right now, and that is what is important in this process. It isn’t a reason for YOU to continue on.

I believe I won a 40-point victory two weeks ago in West Virginia and a 35-point victory in Kentucky this past week – despite voters being repeatedly told this race is over – because I’m standing up for them. I’m standing up for the deepest principles of our party and for an America that values the middle class and rewards hard work.

You won in two states that are anomolies in this country. Their population is made up of older white people who would never vote for a black man even if he were Jesus Christ. You are talking about two states that went for Bush in both of the two previous elections by large margins. Most of the younger, more educated people have left both of those states, and the ones left behind are poor and do not have access to a lot of information the rest of the country has.

And we get to her final point:

Finally, I am running because I believe I’m the strongest candidate to stand toe-to-toe with Sen. McCain. Delegate math might be complicated – but electoral math is not. Our campaign is winning the popular vote – and we’ve been winning the swing states we need to get 270 electoral votes and take back the White House: Pennsylvania, Ohio, Arkansas, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, Michigan, Florida and West Virginia.

Delegate math is “complicated”? Obviously for you. Those of us who use the math skills learned by the fourth grade can easily do the following math:

There are 86 delegates left to be pledged.

There are 204 “Super Delegates” left to endorse a candidate

The magical number of delegates to win is 2025 (not counting Michigan and Florida)

Obama currently has 1973total delegates and only needs 52 to win.

Clinton currently has 1779 total delegates and only needs 246 to win.

Of course, if you throw in the flawed Michigan and Florida counts in the literal way you would like them to be counted, you narrow the margins down a bit, but not enough to win.

As far as the electoral math goes, just because you won in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Arkansas, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, Michigan, Florida and West Virginia, doesn’t mean you will win those states in the general election. Plus, I see you are cheating a little bit by claiming a victory in both Michigan and Florida — even though you ran virtually unopposed in both of those states. There is also no indication that Obama couldn’t win any of those states either. You won those states in a primary election. Some of those states were won because a number of Republicans following Rush Limbaugh’s “Operation Chaos” crossed over and voted for you to keep you in the election. Hardly an endorsement for the general election.

Electoral-Vote has some General Election Polls with his now-familiar map. Granted, this is still May, and the election is still six months away, which is light-years in political terms. But here is how Hillary’s electoral math works:

Pennsylvania — BOTH beat McCain

Ohio — BOTH beat McCain

Arkansas –Obama loses to McCain 33% to 57% Clinton beats McCain 53% to 39% (home town advantage?)

New Hampshire — BOTH beat McCain

New Jersey — BOTH beat McCain

New Mexico — BOTH beat McCain

Nevada — Obama loses to McCain 40% to 46%, Clinton beats McCain 46% to 41%

Michigan — Obama loses to McCain 44% – 45%, Clinton TIES McCain at 44% (which is essentially a loss for both)

Florida — Obama loses to McCain 40% – 50%, Clinton beats McCain 47% to 41%

Remember Clinton’s big Kentucky win? BOTH lose to McCain.

All of this being said, Hillary DOES have a strong argument — at least right now — of being the stronger candidate against McCain. That is, if you are going by the polls six months out and you had the choice of two democratic candidates. Here is how Electoral-Vote.com has the electoral votes laid out:

Clinton vs. McCain: 319 Clinton to 202 McCain with 17 Tied

Obama vs McCain: 266 Obama to 248 McCain with 24 Tied

Either way you go, the Democrat wins. But I have to caution you: these are polls taken six months out, and neither candidate is the declared nominee at the moment, and with the exception of Obama, there has been very little dust-up between McCain and the democratic nominees.