Thursday, June 26, 2008

More on the Obama/Clinton party split

I keep hearing debates about what exactly the Clinton/Obama split in the Democratic Party means. Yes, they're close on policy issues, but the split is occasionally framed as a larger division over party strategy, in which the Clinton team includes the Carville/Emanuel strategic types (who target a few key states and flood them with money) and the Obama team is aligned with the Howard Dean 50-state folks.

Here's some more evidence on that split: Obama has decided to campaign separately from the Colorado Coordinated Campaign. This seems to have pissed off some party regulars, like the Clinton-backing Paul Sandoval, a north Denver restaurateur and pretty significant local party leader. I don't see this as a huge story -- there's always tension between a presidential campaign and the coordinated campaign, and the Post story linked to above correctly notes that it's of a piece with Obama's decision to reject public financing. That is, he's doing pretty well on his own.

But some context is provided by a commenter at
I certainly can't speak for Mr. Sandoval, but his argument might make sense if you equated Clinton with the older insider Party structure and saw Obama's team as the new interlopers.

Then the argument becomes, "Sure, you did it with all these outsiders, but then don't expect the Party regulars to turn the keys of the machine over to you."

It would still be a deeply flawed argument that ignores the full range of support that Obama enjoys, but I can see how someone might try and make it.

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