Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Congrats to Barack Obama

I give props to Barack Obama for his election victory Tuesday. Running against the vaunted Clinton Machine that controlled the Dem party for more than 15 years, Obama's odds were very slim 2 years ago. Hillary Clinton was the obvious front runner when Obama started his campaign. Hillary had major advantages over Obama in terms of money, connections, and advisers. You can argue whether her husband was an advantage or a liability, but he certainly had enormous political heft that he lent to his wife. Most of us assumed Hillary Clinton would be the Dem nominee.

During her debates and appearances, Clinton seemed unauthentic and contrived but still managed to get millions of votes in the Dem primaries. As the primaries wore on people seemed to want Hillary gone. Obama's phrase "it's time to turn the page" resonated against the Clintons. And Obama bested Hillary in terms of stamina and fund-raising and appeal.

Defeating John McCain may have been less of a challenge for Obama. The country was already tired of George Bush's presidency, and the financial collapse weeks before the election was all it took to seal John McCain's doom.

The vote totals are impressive. It looks like Obama will get more than 50 percent of the vote -- a mark Bill Clinton couldn't achieve in 1992 and 1996.

In fact, the unhappiest man on election night was not John McCain, it was Bill Clinton. Barack Obama will most likely eclipse Clinton in terms of charisma and popularity.

With the passage of time, the Clinton presidency will seem quaint and uneventful. And that is a reality that will eat away at Bill Clinton in his remaining years.

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