Still all to play for

We are still waiting for the fat lady to sing. An excellent analysis in on the Texas and Ohio Primaries

What next? The nomination will go to the person who can amass 2,025 delegates. Before Tuesday Mr Obama led in the delegate count, but neither candidate would have been able to reach the magic number without superdelegates. That has not changed. So the campaigns now have to work out how to woo the superdelegates. Mrs Clinton can point to a victory in a state like Ohio and say that she can swing it to the Democratic column in November, but Mr Obama can point to his big success in Virginia and make a similar argument. Right now it seems that Mr Obama will be able to claim a lead in raw popular votes, but Mrs Clinton can point to her successes in primaries to Mr Obama’s successes in caucuses. The race between Mrs Clinton and Mr Obama will continue, and some Democrats will regret that. But Mrs Clinton has undoubtedly earned the right to be there.

It will be a long fight through the early summer, and the outcome is uncertain. Meanwhile John McCain has the Republican nomination, and George Bush’s endorsement (with the obligatory photo opportunity in the White House Rose Garden). McCain may need this to burnish his conservative credentials, but my bet is that that photo will appear in Democratic campaign ads in due course. Would you really want to be linked to the least successful US President in living memory (and that list includes both Nixon and Carter).

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