Saturday, January 26, 2008

Early Bet: It's Obama

South Carolina's Democrats vote today. Both Hillary and Barack are playing politics as usual. But I think Hillary has more to lose. It is not in her interest to have Bill so prominent, nor to be so divisive and negative. On both counts, she reminds voters of the 1990s. That is probably intentional. Many Democrats, myself included, think Bill Clinton was a very competent president. But the prospect of taking the nation back in the direction of old-school politics is not appealing. I wish Barack had Hillary's experience and poise. But even as he is, he stands more clearly for change, and that's going to resonate, in South Carolina and beyond. My early bet is that the Clintons' behavior, in New Hampshire and South Carolina, will ultimately be a weight upon them, and that Barack will come out the Democratic party nominee. I think the nation might be better off with a choice between two heavyweights -- Hillary and John McCain -- in November. But I fear it may well be an entirely different and, in some ways, less promising choice between Obama and Romney.