Following Hillary Over a Cliff
BY RUSS WELLEN
10.26.2007 05:48 | DISPATCHES
Zogby's recent poll asking "Whom would you NEVER vote for president?" was kind of mischievous, wasn't it? But if I were a member of the Democratic National Committee, not to mention a congressional Democrat, I'd be sweating bullets over it.
A neat 50% claim they would never, even under pain of waterboarding (kidding), cast their presidential vote for Hillary Clinton.
"Never say never," Howard Dean or the Democratic Leadership Council's Harold Ford might say. That may have been right seven months ago when 46, not 50%, claimed they would never vote for Hillary. But now, at a time, when other polls show her pulling ahead of Senator Obama in the Democratic race, it's looking more like "Always say never."
Worse, her campaign is beginning to emit the stench of Bob Dole's 1996 Republican presidential run. You know -- hand her the nomination because it's owed her. In his case, likely payback for key votes he swung the way of congressional colleagues. In hers, out of appreciation to the Clintons for their magic touch raking in money.
Dole never had a chance because of poor funding, his caustic personality and, of course, because he was running against a popular president, Hillary's husband. Meanwhile, she's been polling well against leading Republican candidate Giuliani. But, as one commentator explained, it just may be because voters are becoming resigned to her.
The cynicism of such a strategy notwithstanding, Democratic leadership forgets there's little margin of error because of the likelihood that Republicans will engineeer widespread voter fraud again.
Hillary's campaign seems to have developed a mind of its own. Is there any way to stop it before it leads the Democratic party over a cliff only to be dashed to pieces on the rocks below?