Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Hillary's Speech

John Fund at the Wall Street Journal picked up on something in Hillary Clinton's speech last night that I thought about as well:

(1) It was probably the best speech she ever gave, and

(2) It was reminiscent of the speech given by Ronald Reagan in 1976 that generated the reaction that, "ooh, we nominated the wrong person."

Here's what Fund had to say about it:

Ms. Clinton's speech was so effective it invites comparisons with the last great convention speeches made by losing primary candidates - those of Edward Kennedy in 1980 and Ronald Reagan in 1976. But Ms. Clinton did more than either man to make it clear that the party should unite behind its fall standard bearer. Mr. Kennedy famously never raised hands together with President Carter after his speech and Mr. Reagan was also a little standoffish with President Gerald Ford.

The audience's reaction was such that some Democratic delegates on the floor no doubt felt much the same way that Republican delegates felt after Reagan's memorable remarks at the 1976 convention. Many delegates left that gathering convinced they had just nominated the wrong person. They corrected that mistake four years later. No doubt some of Ms. Clinton's aides are privately hoping that some delegates leave Denver feeling the same way.

Hillary said she was supporting Obama, but gave no compelling reason to support him.  Just do what I am doing, (paraphrasing) and vote for the guy [with some reluctance], like I plan to,...

She leaves the door ajar now for 2012 or 2016.

Hillary supporter, Governor Ed Rendell of Pennsylvania remarked in an interview that he likened Obama to Adlai Stevenson in 1952; i.e., an intellect, well liked, running against a war hero (Eisenhower); and we know how that election turned out.

My thinking is that any bounce Obama gets from this week will be classified as a "dead cat" bounce.  I.e., he get's a small one that has no periodicity to it.  McCain could actually pull this off, but the race is Obama's to lose.


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