Sunday, January 27, 2008

The Morning After

Marc Ambinder:

A win is a win is a win. Forget the racial and gender demographics. A big win is a big win. This is a big win. Obama nearly received more votes than all the Democrats combined in 2004. South Carolina was also a primary, not a caucus.

Joe Klein:

Make no mistake: What happened in South Carolina today was a moral reprimand delivered to Bill and Hillary Clinton by a united Democratic Party--but especially by the African-American segment of that party.

A reader of Andrew Sullivan's:

In last week's SC GOP primary, McCain and Huckabee (the top 2 finishers), got 147,283 and 132,440 votes respectively. That's a total of 279,723. Obama just pulled down 291,000 by himself.

Matt Yglesias:

After all this time being told by the Clinton campaign that Barack Obama is some kind of closet Reagan-worshipping right-winger, it's a bit confusing to be told that he's the second coming of Jesse Jackson, too.

Noam Scheiber:

Obama took nearly 80 percent of the black vote, yes, but also about a quarter of the white vote. That stacks up pretty well alongside Hillary's 36 percent and Edwards's 40***--well enough that Nora O'Donnell of MSNBC could call it "almost a three-way split," and The New York Times could proclaim that a "coalition of white and black support" powered Obama's victory. This is a huge development going forward. The one thing Obama couldn't afford coming out of South Carolina was to be pigeonholed as "the black candidate." Instead, the opposite is happening--he's being hailed as someone who can appeal to all demographics.

The Politico:

Obama won every level of income and education and beat Clinton handily among voters who named Iraq, the economy and health care as their most important concerns.

In Nevada a week ago, Clinton and Obama split voters who prioritized the economy and Iraq; Clinton won those who said health care.

In South Carolina, Obama won on all three issues by 20 to 30 points.

The Economist:

Mr Obama won about half of the vote among 18 to 29 year-olds. This could prove as important as his support among blacks because virtually no states in the looming “Super Tuesday” primaries (with the exception of Georgia) have as many blacks as South Carolina does. Many of them, though, are full of young voters. Expect to see a big Obama push on college campuses across the country to boost turn-out in the upcoming primaries.

The Weekly Standard:

Tonight's results from South Carolina will bring forth the fun house mirror that is modern media spin. Das Hillary Apparat will attempt to pin a racial subtext on Obama no matter what the result. If he wins big, it will be about "record" black turnout. If he wins small, it will be that his appeal is "limited" to African Americans. Bill Clinton will jump in the media cycle tomorrow, grabbing some poor network embed by the lapels and unloading a purple-faced lecture to the whirring cameras about how the shameful media shall never, ever bait a true selfless hero of the civil rights movement such as himself into making Barack Obama's race an issue in this campaign, especially in the South, where race is such a big issue.


I thought Barak’s speech last night was a tour de force. It was spellbinding, riffing on King and Kennedy while instantiating his own rhetorical style.

Here’s the key thing I noticed–more than the words: Barak Obama is a grownup. He’s not interested in being young or cool. He’s interested in being responsible. He sees himself as having a fiduciary responsibility, not an excuse for a never-ending party. In this era of delayed adolescence, he’s not pretending to be a rock star, or eternal teenager. He’s not playing the guitar on TV with the band (Clinton). He’s not trying to be a cutup and cute. (Huckabee/Norris ad). He’s not proclaiming a rigid inner certainty about what’s right, as a raft in a relativistic ocean (GW Bush, about his own conversion). He’s advocating confidence, not certainty. Judgment, not relativism.

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