Hillary for President of Futility

Hillary Clinton’s attempt to catch up to Barack Obama by participating in primaries and caucuses. If you aren’t familiar with Slate.com’s Delegate Calculator, you will see that the more Clinton competes, the further behind she gets. Move the red slider at the top of the page until the box at the bottom says, “Clinton is ahead…”:

  • 3/03/08: Clinton needed to win 60% of the remaining vote to pull ahead of Obama in the delegate count.
  • 3/06/08: Clinton needed 62% of the remaining vote.
  • UPDATE 3/12/08: Clinton needed 63% — Recall that Clinton hasn’t won ANY state by more the 60% so far.
  • UPDATE 3/17/08: Clinton needed 63% WITHOUT Michigan & Florida / 60% WITH Michigan & Florida
  • UPDATE 3/20/08: Clinton needed 64% WITHOUT Michigan & Florida / 60% WITH Michigan & Florida — now more unlikely than before
  • UPDATE 4/09/08: Clinton needed 65% WITHOUT Michigan & Florida / 60% WITH Michigan & Florida
  • UPDATE 4/23/08: Clinton needed 68% WITHOUT Michigan & Florida / 61% WITH Michigan & Florida
  • UPDATE 4/28/08: Clinton needed 70% WITHOUT Michigan & Florida / 61% WITH Michigan & Florida
  • UPDATE 5/07/08: Clinton needed 86% WITHOUT Michigan & Florida / 67% WITH Michigan & Florida
  • UPDATE 5/14/08: Clinton needed 86% WITHOUT Michigan & Florida / 66% WITH Michigan & Florida
  • UPDATE 5/22/08: Clinton needed more than 100% WITHOUT Michigan & Florida / 70% WITH Michigan & Florida
  • UPDATE 6/02/08: Clinton cannot win, but still soldiers on.

I’m reminded of an (American) football game where the team that’s behind needs a 7-point touchdown to win, but only gets a 3-point field goal. They may be happy to have gained any points at all, but they’re still going to lose.

Recently, somebody compared this race to the best-of-7 Stanley Cup playoffs: After Obama has won the first 4 games, Clinton insists they play the remaining 3 games because she might score more total goals or maybe the officials will award her the Cup anyway.

So now we watch while Clinton’s old-style bare-knuckle politics tries to find ways to change the rules of the game.

 


sisyphus' slope

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