Mar 11, 2008

Hillary's path to the nomination

So how can Hillary win? These are the scenarios I can think of in order of best outcome to worst.

  • She can win more pledged delegates. Based on current polling that path will close on the May 20th primaries in Oregon and Kentucky.
  • Next up is Obama implodes ala Vitter, Craig or Spitzer. This is what super delegates are for.
  • Now we're in dodgy territory. This is the "will of the voters" argument. Popular votes, primary votes and primary popular votes. In addition to this being a hard argument to sell, the numbers don't back it up.
  • An even worse variation on "the will of the voters" is only counting voters if they live in big states or in blue states. Discounting voters based on ideology or geography.
  • Lastly there's super delegate arm twisting.
The downside is that in addition to being in the order of best to worst outcomes, they're also in order from least to most plausible. Clinton is working to win this cycle - not to be veep and not to run again in 2012 (she'll never win a caucus again). So the Clinton campaign is actively pursuing all of these strategies. Update: Another take on this.