All The More Reason Not To

Power can be fleeting.

I stumbled across a post over at Down With Tyranny that is incredibly enlightening regarding what is going on behind the scenes in the Democratic nomination race’s hunt for Super Delegates:

But, to be honest, it wasn’t just to share that video that inspired me to write this post. It was actually because of a woman I met there who is well-placed among Democratic donors. She had just come back from DC the day before. She told me she had spoken to several Democratic elected officials– senators and congressmen– and that they were all telling her the same thing: they were getting barraged with phone calls from the Clinton camp that were very threatening. Typically a stooge like McAuliffe would call, be extremely unpleasant, threaten that the Clinton’s would make sure they were defeated in the future and hang up. Soon after a very sweet Hillary would call asking if she could see the battered senator. No one wants to see her anymore. This is a horrible tragedy and anyone who thinks they plan to withdraw gracefully, is in for a rude awakening. I’m so glad that Blue America has decided to stay out of the presidential race.

I really don’t know why I’m so shocked at this; Hillary Clinton’s sense of entitlement has been pervasive throughout this campaign.  On the campaign trail she may be asking for people’s votes to propel her to the nomination, but there should be no reason to think that behind the scenes she’s not just demanding it, but delivering ultimatums.

I suppose it’s just the gritty realism of it all.  We who write about politics lovehyperbole, and “strongarming” is definitely a word that has been used more than once to describe what Clinton may be doing or may have done to key members of the establishment to seal her nomination.  But to actually hear accounts of it occurring; to hear Clinton staffers threaten elected officials with losing their reelection bids, that’s somehow disturbing.

And, thankfully, most likely futile.

The fact of the matter is that Clinton is in no position to make a whole hell of a lot of threats right now.  She’s not only losing the Democratic nomination race, but over the past few days stories have been seeping out that show that she has some damage control to undertake if she simply wants to hold on to her senate seat.

As a brand, Clinton is failing, and it is every bit her own fault.

Sure, she still has some high powered donors in her pocket, but there are two problems with trying to use them as leverage.  The first being that donors aren’t stupid.  They will give money to Clinton for as long as doing so can show political returns, but the moment Clinton ceases to be politically relevant, it’s far more likely that these donors will find other politicians to back up.

The other problem with donors is that Barack Obama has struck upon a far more effective method of fund raising, one that I imagine Democrats will find more attractive than the old ways of finding high powered donors to fund election and reelection bids.

Finally, even if Clinton still holds onto her senate seat, which is still likely, rumors have it that she is not likely to overtake the Senate Majority Leader position, a position that at one time appeared to be available to her.

Thus, with her political and financial clout both fading fast, she doesn’t appear to have the firepower to back up her threats.  Without the ability to follow through, such threats are only empty threats, and all the more reason for Super Delegates to support her presidential bid and thus willingly hand her power over them.

When her campaign behaves like this, why bother helping it stick around?

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