Obama Sweeps Potomac Primary

Barack Obama has another string of landslide victories, sweeping Virginia, Maryland, and the District of Columbia. Once again he beat expectations. His victory demonstrates how he is taking control of the race by receiving increasing support from Clinton’s core voters. CNN’s exit polls note:

Obama was expected to poll well among young voters, independents and African-Americans, and he did — taking 60 to 70 percent of the votes in the first two groups and nearly 90 percent of black voters, the polls suggest.

But he also was edging out Clinton among voters 65 and older, blue-collar workers and women, all groups that Clinton was counting on as the core of her support…

And young voters flocked to the Obama campaign, the polls suggest. Seventy-five percent of poll respondents under 30 and 67 percent of those under 45 voted for him in Virginia. Those numbers were 68 percent and 71 percent in Maryland.

However, Obama also edged Clinton — 52-47 — among voters over 60 in Virginia and 50 percent of those voters in Maryland, compared with 46 percent for Clinton.

And he split white votes about 50-50 with Clinton in both states — edging her 50-49 in Virginia and trailing 51-46 in Maryland. That’s a big change from previous contests in which Clinton held a big lead over Obama among white Democrats…

In Virginia, Obama led Clinton 59 to 41 percent among the women who were polled. He also took 57 percent of the votes of respondents who said they earn less than $50,000 a year and 59 percent of those who said someone in their household is a member of a union.

Among those voters in Maryland, 59 percent of women backed Obama, 65 percent of those making less than $50,000 voted for him and 61 percent of those in union households supported him.

He was the winner among respondents who said the economy, the Iraq war or health care — a trademark issue for Clinton — was the most important issue to them…

In Virginia, Clinton took an overwhelming 96 percent of the support from voters who said experience was the most important quality a candidate should have. In Maryland, that number was 91 percent.

The increased support for Obama from many of these groups might alter predictions that Clinton can survive the race by winning the final three large states. Clinton has largely based her campaign on a number of myths which are no longer working. Her claims of being the inevitable winner do not hold up as she continues to lose primaries in every region of the country.

The results above also show that voters are no longer blindly accepting her claim of being more experienced. The reality is that Obama is by far the more experienced of the two. Obama has more years of legislative experience. During his years of legislative experience Obama has done far more positive than Clinton has, while Clinton has frequently been on the wrong side of the issues.

Besides his more impressive legislative experience, Obama’s experience in teaching Constitutional law is a skill which should be valuable in undoing much of the harm caused by George Bush. In contrast Clinton has been an advocate of increased presidential power and Executive privilege.

Obama’s experience as a community organizer can also be seen in how he has run his campaigns. Clinton sees both her campaign and her role in government as purely top down. Her Nanny State philosophy results in proposals based upon government control to force her views on all, while Obama shows a far better understanding of the necessary balance between government and private life.

As a result of today’s victories, CNN estimates that Obama leads 1,052 to 951 in pledged delegates. While he might not be able to accumulate enough delegates to clinch victory, if he continues to extend his lead over Clinton it will be difficult for the super delegates to deny him the nomination.

Clinton doesn’t know how to respond. This is the second time in a row that Clinton failed to acknowledge or congratulate Obama for his victory. After Saturday’s victories the Clinton campaign said that the victories didn’t matter because the caucuses were dominated by “activists.” Apparently the views of Democratic “activists” don’t count. Some Clinton supporters are claiming that these losses don’t matter because Clinton didn’t campaign in some of the states she has lost. This sure contradicts the Clinton argument that Michigan and Florida should count, despite the fact that not only didn’t Obama campaign, but all the candidates had pledged not to do so.

Clinton is still holding on to the belief that the Giuliani strategy will work for her as she waits for the big states to vote. Some still believe this will work:

Mike DuHaime, a Republican consultant who managed Rudolph W. Giuliani’s campaign, said Mrs. Clinton was making the right decisions in trying to make the most of her strengths.

“Clearly, she has had success in larger states and there are a whole bunch of delegates at stake on March 4,” Mr. DuHaime said. “They are not trying to figure out who can win the most states; they are trying to figure out who can win the most delegates.”

Some people just do not learn from their mistakes. We sure saw how well this logic worked for Giuliani.

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