David Burstein '11 and Jon Delano '71 are following this year's presidential election and will have updates throughout the campaign.
The Road to the White House: Whispering Campaigns
Jon Delano: Hi David. Before we get going, I thought you were terrific on CSPAN the other night.
David D. Burstein: Thanks, it was a really good piece.
JD: Did any "youngsters" respond to your call?
DB: Yes, lots. we were flooded with responses.
JD: Great. I was pleased when The Washington Times op ed editor asked me to write a piece on the PA Primary. The real question today is, will the PA primary count, or will it all be over before then? I covered an Obama rally in Youngstown OH the other day.
DB: Yeah...it depends on Texas and Ohio. I don't think Hillary will win both, but if she wins one she might stay in.
JD: I agree. One win gives her an argument to stick around, but it may not change the outcome.
DB: Yes and she's looking for a reason to stay in.
JD: I do think the national media has been more than a little negative against her.
DB: They've always been hard on her though and it doesn’t do her good to complain about media coverage. It makes her seem desperate.
JD: My own view is that the barrier against women is tougher than against African Americans when it comes to politics.
DB: I think there are big challenges for both.
JD: I don't think she's complained publicly about it. We are still not quite there on lots of levels.
DB: Well, Howard Wolfson has.
JD: I mean we've only had one Catholic president, no Jewish president, no women, no blacks -- we're not there yet by a long shot.
DB: That’s for sure.
JD: If Clinton wins Ohio and loses Texas, a possible outcome, it's hard to imagine her winning the nomination without something shaking things up.
DB: It's amazing how much we talk about progress and equality in light of that. She could hang in and fight FL and Michigan. Super delegates, etc.
DB: It would be tough and she'd end up looking bad and against party unity.
JD: Progress is having a woman and black compete for the nomination.
DB: Yeah, finally.
JD: Super delegates are consummate politicians -- they will go with the winner -- not pick the winner. I do think the Obama campaign has tried to stir up some super secret cabal to keep him from winning. It won't happen that way.
DB: I agree. This is something that needs to be won fairly and clearly.
JD: The greatest fear among many Dems is that Obama is not vetted enough, meaning there's something out there against him that will be used by the Republicans.
DB: Yeah...but there are always new things for any candidate. Hillary likes to see everything is out about her.
JD: The blogosphere is full of claims about him, but it's hard to know what's fact and fiction.
DB: But there is always more. We thought McCain was vetted, and look now!
JD: Hahahaha. True. "That woman" is from western PA.
DB: The blogs are a real challenge for Obama, they'll be more Muslim rumors and as you say fact from fiction is blurred.
JD: My own view on that is the NYT stepped into a hornet's nest without properly covering the bases. Unless you were in the bedroom or have some verifiable source, that's a story I would not touch. On Obama, a good friend of mine active in the Jewish community sent my lots of material, alleging Obama's church is tight with Farrakhan.
DB: I think it's a problematic story but just the beginning of McCain skeletons. I get all sorts of emails like that about Obama.
JD: Apparently his preacher has given church awards to Farrakhan. Of course, that does not mean Obama endorses that. We all have to be careful of guilt by association. I graduated from Haverford College in the 70s -- does that make me a commie, pinko, ultra-liberal? The rumors about Obama that are in the blogosphere will some day hit the mainstream media.
DB: Hopefully they'll vet them better in the mainstream media.
JD: Is he ready to defend against them? That will be key.
DB: Yeah... We’ll see.