Luminous mysteries

/ 5 March 2008

My mom says she’s been saying novenas, that’s why Hillary won. The rosary of light. The luminous mysteries. My family in Wyoming asked me “Fighting amongst ourselves helps only the GOP. This is why I hate getting involved, the disappointment kills me. How did she win? Do you think more people voted for her than Barack? From our POV, that’s totally impossible. I’m stunned. WTF?”

You have to remember that two weeks ago Ohio and Texas were both supporting Clinton with margins of over 20%. Yes, people, real people, some of my family, support Hillary, and more people last night than supported Barack. She is a strong candidate and has a strong organization behind her. You cannot count her out. There are real reasons to vote for her too, people who loved the Clintons and the 1990’s (with some good reason).

That said, Obama has built an organization from scratch that nearly matches hers in every way and well exceeds it in some. That organization has had to fight a hard-scrabble fight from state to state for months. It has conceded no corner of the USA, fought hard everywhere. The press made February sound like a cakewalk, it was not. It was hard to win those 11 races. I made phone calls to two states myself, something I have not done in over 20 years. Obama wins with sweat and hard work.

He and we worked hard in Ohio and in Texas, and in Vermont and Rhode Island. That he cut her lead to 4% in Texas and 10% in Ohio is very good news. The media will spin is as terrible, and it was disappointing not to win, but it was a great race on March 4th. Even more remarkable, he probably lost no more than 5 delegates to Clinton last night. 5. Think of who he is, what he has had to build, how far behind he started, and then realize that he can get through a day like yesterday and only lose by 5 out of hundreds of delegates. There is no reason to feel bad about last night.

Obama built his lead in the delegate race (over 100 delegates ahead in all) state by state, race by race, person by person. So now you know that this is not an anointing. It never was and it should never be in this country. This is a fight for the future of the Democratic party and the country. Clinton really cares about that future, she will fight. If we really care, we have to fight too. Respectfully, intelligently, energetically, with our whole heart.

Your turn. I hope you not only get to the caucuses in Wyoming on Saturday, but make sure everyone you know does too. Whoever they support. The real story of this whole season has been turnout. We need to use the opportunity of a live race in the Democratic primary to get people charged up about changing this country. These are batteries we need to charge to get us through a potentially ugly convention, and a certainly ugly general election.

Go for it. Of course you will be hurt. Betrayed even. But is that any reason not to revel in the moment and help build a movement!

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