The Day After…

A personal observation from my polling place yesterday…There were lines on the Democratic side of the room but none on the Republican side. And this area is mostly Republican. We don’t field a full slate of Democrat candidates for any elections in this area…

Caucus crowds amaze election officials | – Houston Chronicle
The crowd started growing well before the polls closed, and by 7:15 something resembling a mob had assembled in front of the Lovett Inn in the heart of Montrose. Patiently they waited for the chance to … well, nobody was quite sure.

The Precinct 34 Democratic convention, informally known as the caucus, drew hundreds back to the polling place for a second chance to express their preference for Barack Obama or Hillary Rodham Clinton. Gradually the mob became a line, and it snaked down the sidewalk and around the corner into the darkness.

The hitherto obscure process, usually the province of the political hard core, was elevated to the main stage Tuesday by the tight race between Obama and Clinton and the unusual rules of the Democratic primary, which apportions delegates both by popular vote and success in the caucus straw poll.

“I’ve been doing this in Democratic primaries for 30 years, and I’ve never seen anything like it,” said Annise Parker, the Houston city controller and a nearby resident. “This just shows that if you get the right scenario and the right candidates, people will come out to vote. Here you have a history-making election — either an African-American or a woman will be the Democratic candidate.”

By 9:15, the caucus results were known in Precinct 34. Obama, who trailed Clinton in the day’s voting there, won the local delegate count. He will send 24 delegates to the senatorial convention, Clinton 16.

And so at least in this one precinct Clintons fears were realized. She won the primary and lost the caucus. You really gotta love the way Texas Democrats level the playing field.

Clinton racks up victories in Texas, Ohio | – Houston Chronicle
Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, on the ropes just days ago after losing a dozen straight primaries, gained new momentum Tuesday by clinching crucial victories over Sen. Barack Obama in Texas and Ohio.

Obama said he expects the tough primary contest to continue next week in Mississippi, where he is favored; in Wyoming, where Clinton is running strong, and in Pennsylvania, the largest remaining state, which holds its primary on April 22.

Slightly more than 600 delegates remained to be picked in the 10 states that vote after Tuesday. All of the delegates from Florida and Michigan are uncertain because the national party stripped those key swing states of their representation for scheduling primaries in January.

And so the race continues. And this iis the part that I am worried about…and what led me to cast my vote for her opponent…

CLINTON: Energizing Victories, But Difficult Delegate Math –
Clinton wiped away the debate last night with a robust victory in Ohio and a narrow win in Texas. But as she vowed to keep campaigning, the tight vote in Texas signaled she may yet face a tough decision in coming weeks. The slim margin in the Texas popular vote and an additional caucus process in which she trailed made clear that she would not win enough delegates to put a major dent in Sen. Barack Obama’s lead. And regardless of the results, she emerged from the crucible of Ohio and Texas with a campaign mired in debt and riven by dissension

Clinton plans to use her triumphs in Ohio and Texas, as well as in Rhode Island, to argue that she still has a credible claim to the Democratic nomination, despite the delegate math.(emphasis mine) Many in her circle believe she finally recaptured momentum on the campaign trail in recent days and managed to put Obama on the defensive by questioning his readiness to serve as commander in chief. If nothing else, they hope she has earned a new lease to make her case to the nation.

It is that win at all costs, to hell with the perceptions, that started me questioning her sides purpose in this race.

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