Remember them Super Delegates? Back when change had trumped experience and the numbers pointed in only one direction, Hillary Clinton made a plea to the Super Delegates to ignore the math and consider her prophecy: Barack Obama was unelectable. White women wouldn’t vote for him, Hispanics wouldn’t vote for him, and as Bill Clinton said, “hard-working Americans, white Americans” wouldn’t vote for him. Then there were the big states like Pennsylvania and Ohio that only Hillary could carry. And finally, by following the Democratic Party rules, Michigan and Florida would surely go to the Republicans.
There was a moment, after McCain’s choice of Sarah Palin, when everyone questioned whether Obama should have picked Hillary (though I stuck to my original position that she was too divisive for Obama’s message). For all of Billary’s cynicism, I am proud to say that Americans proved the duo wrong. Obama dominated the female vote, held his own with the white male vote, and prevailed in the keys states of Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, and Colorado. He took Michigan and Florida, and even stole Virginia and possibly North Carolina. Party unity? Not a problem, even with Bill and Hillary barely breaking a sweat.
There is even a little irony in the prophecy that Obama was unelectable because he was not vetted. Hillary’s negative attacks solved that problem, and there is a strong argument that the net effect of the Billary smears only made Obama stronger and more resilient for the general election. By the time McCain Palin were palling around Billary’s sludge, the American people had already made up their minds about Obama.
After all the prophetic claims of unelectablility, Obama went on to become the first Democrat to win more than fifty percent of the vote in a presidential election since Jimmy Carter. So much for prophecies.
I do kind of wonder what Chelsea Clinton was doing after the results came in on Tuesday night. What was going through her mind as her entire peer group — that 20-30 age group that overwhelmingly came out in favor of Obama — was celebrating in the streets of New York City, rejoicing in the historic moment?