Monday, April 21, 2008
"Either Democrat would be better than John McCain....and all three of us would be better than George Bush." - Barack Obama
Senators Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are patiently awaiting the results of the 2008 Democratic primary election in Pennsylvania. Up to now, the race to determine who will be the best Democratic candidate to face McCain in the Presidential election has been difficult for democrats to figure out, to say the least. Obama is currently in the lead with 1,644 total delegates while Clinton holds 1,498.
But the race in Pennsylvania is also “different.” Obama’s fundraising efforts, that reached nearly $41 million just from the month of March, has enabled him spend about $31 million on his presidential campaign in the region, compared to Clinton’s $22 million spending budget. Earlier in the week, the two senators publically took stabs at one another. Clinton continually criticized Obama’s campaign for “misrepresenting” itself, while Obama criticized Clinton’s plans for universal health care. Despite their differences, that seem to be vividly voiced and accentuated by the media, Obama and Clinton truly do disagree all that much on the substantive issues– economy, health care, housing, crime, war in Iraq, and other foreign policy matters. This is why the two seem to fight about the less important issues, often pointing out the problems with one another’s campaigning or Washington experience. With 158 delegates at stake, the results of the Pennsylvania primary could force Clinton to finally consider dropping out of the presidential race and endorse Obama.
What is most interesting is that state officials claim that hundreds of thousands of new voters have registered, many of who are about to vote for the first time. These voters represent what Wolf Blitzer has termed “a surprise factor.” These virgin democratic supporters represent an element of the political equation that could “tip the balance.” The emergence of new voters in the presidential election is also a huge issue that both McCain and the awaiting democratic nominee will soon have to grapple with.