Popcorn Was Invented For Spectacles Such As These
By Pejman Yousefzadeh Posted in 2008 | Barack Obama | Hillary Clinton | Kneel Before Zod | Let's You And Him Fight | Rooting For Injuries — Comments (4) / Email this page » / Leave a comment »
Schadenfreude is an exceedingly unappealing trait. It also is utterly and completely irresistible.
Some Democratic Party leaders are growing more concerned that the protracted, caustic fight for the presidential nomination will cripple the eventual nominee, and there are new signs they have reason to worry.
More party leaders are saying that the increasingly personal crossfire between the Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama campaigns serves only to write the script for Republican ads in the fall and to give John McCain, the presumptive GOP nominee, a head start in framing his candidacy.
While the Democrats have been arguing almost daily the past two weeks about each other's electability and integrity, McCain has visited Iraq and other countries in the Middle East and Europe, received the blessing Tuesday of Nancy Reagan, and yesterday delivered a sweeping address on foreign policy.
"There's nothing like a two-way Democrat suicide pact to make it easy for McCain to go off on a grand statesman tour," Mike Murphy, a Republican strategist who once worked for McCain, said yesterday.
A Gallup poll released yesterday indicated that 28 percent of Democrats supporting Clinton said they would vote for McCain over Obama in November, while 19 percent of Obama's backers said they would vote for McCain over Clinton.
Polls suggest that McCain is even or has a narrow lead over both Democrats, and CNN polls also indicate increasing unrest in the Democratic Party. The percentage of Clinton voters who say they would be upset if Obama received the nomination has jumped from 35 percent in January to 51 percent this month, while the percentage of Obama supporters who say they would be upset if Clinton got the nod has risen from 26 percent to 41 percent.
All of this helps feed in nicely to this story:
A new analysis of March polling data suggests that John McCain's cross-party support surpasses that of either Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton.
According to data provided by the Gallup Organization at Politico's request, in a hypothetical contest between McCain and Obama, McCain wins 17 percent of Democrats and those leaning Democratic, while Obama wins 10 percent of Republicans and Republican-leaners.
In a potential contest with Clinton, McCain wins 14 percent of Democrats and Democratic-leaners while Clinton wins 8 percent of Republicans and Republican-leaners.
By way of comparison, exit polls in 2004 reported that George W. Bush won 11 percent of Democrats and John F. Kerry won 6 percent of Republicans.
The new analysis, calculated from a compilation of the Gallup Organization's daily polls between March 7 and 22, seems to indicate that there are more "McCain Democrats" than the much-ballyhooed "Obama Republicans" -- or "Obamacans," as they are sometimes referred to.
To be sure, much of this will disspiate once the Democrats settle on a nominee (eventually, they will). But the chances are increasing that there will remain enough residual bitterness to make a difference in what has become not a runaway election that favors the Democrats, but rather a close election that may yet be won by the Republicans.
Pass the popcorn. Currently, it is as irresistible as the schadenfreude.