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The Delicate Dems

Josh is right. Enough with all the whining. Also enough with all the smack talk about how there must be something seriously wrong with Hillary/Obama as a candidate or s/he would have been able to close the deal by now. Horsefeathers. This isn't a primary in which Democratic voters are having a hard time making up their minds because both candidates are so disappointing. That's what's happening with the other team. Democrats' problem is that they have two candidates who are firing up the electorate, as seen in the consistently high turnout at the polls and the jaw-dropping fund-raising figures. ($30 million and $50 million in just one month? John McCain would kill for that kind of trouble.)

And when did we all get so damn delicate about campaign ads and critical fliers? I swear, all those hyperventilating pundits comparing Hillary's 3 a.m. ad to LBJ's "Daisy" ad make me long for the days of forced institutionalization. Seriously. Time to adjust your meds, guys. LBJ cut from a little girl plucking daisy petals to images of a giant mushroom cloud and a direct warning from Johnson, in that god-awful Texas twang of his, that "the stakes are too high" not to vote for him. Hillary's ad doesn't even have scary music. Maybe it reminds certain political insiders of (gasp!) past Republican ads, but boo-freakin'-hoo. Barack's a big boy, and even if you don't agree with the obsessive debate about his "experience," there's no question that we should take an interest in how the man takes a punch. Similarly, all those mailers trashing Hillary's health care mandate that Obama took such grief for: fair game. She's had more than a decade to come up with a satisfactory response to Harry and Louise. Now is the time to show she's learned how to deflect/defuse such criticisms.

All things considered, this has not been an ugly primary. There is still plenty of time for it to get that way--especially if the party can't figure out a sensible way to address this Florida-Michigan delegate nightmare that it brought on itself. But we ain't there yet. So everyone just buck up and stop acting as though the Democrats were somehow entitled to a smooth nominating process.

--Michelle Cottle