FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
Apparently it's not a fairy tale. Any way you slice it, Barack Obama won last night. He said it would be a split decision, and it was. Hillary Clinton won the big states, but he won more states.
And because the delegates are divided up in each state, they wound up in a virtual tie. Obama had said that if he could come out of yesterday within 100 delegates of Clinton, he would consider that a success. He did better than that.
According to CNN's latest estimate, Clinton is leading at this point in delegates overall with 812 to Obama's 720. However, the Obama camp insists when the last delegate is counted they'll be in front. And some news organizations agree that he'll end up on top.
The one place Obama fell flat was Massachusetts. If you can't win there despite an endorsement from Senator Edward Kennedy and his family – not to mention the state's other Senator John Kerry and its governor – well, so much for endorsements.
So the titanic struggle between "experience" and "change" moves on with another round of primaries and caucuses – first this weekend in Louisiana, Nebraska and Washington State. And then, on February 12th, in the so-called "Potomac primaries" in Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C., where Obama is expected to do well.
When you look at the polls from a few weeks ago, Obama has traveled great distances. Certainly, he is still not as well-known as Clinton in many parts of the country, but it seems like the more time Obama has to campaign in a particular state, the better he does.
Here’s my question to you: What will ultimately decide the outcome of the battle between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
David from Sultan, Washington writes:
Dear Jack, What will decide this race is the same thing that has made it close. In the eyes of the media, Barack can do no wrong and Hillary no right. When you pundits get your way and install him as our candidate, the Republicans will begin the attack campaign, and what carnage it will be. Hillary has withstood the barrage for 15 years now and still she stands. Anyone who thinks Barack won't be "Swift boated" is living in a dream that all too soon will become a nightmare for all of us Democrats.
It appears to be quite simple, Jack. The more time that goes by, the higher the numbers go for Senator Obama. For him, it's just like the Rolling Stones said, "Time is on our side." It seems that, as soon as people actually have a chance to hear Barack Obama, they tend to support him. I think that this truly is a "phenomenon" or "wave" that we are seeing. Remember, Hillary was WAY ahead throughout the country just a few short weeks ago!
Clinton vs. Obama is old vs. new, traditional vs. rational, experience vs. vision. Ultimately the decision will be based on how much counter-reaction there is to Bush. The more people understand the damage caused by Bush, the more they will want to try something different - Obama.
Jacqueline from San Diego writes:
The super delegates might make the decision for all of us (like the Supreme judges in 2000), or a late-comer candidate with "fresh" ideas, or one of the two will make a mistake.
It’s the experience, stupid. Hillary has far more experience than Obama. I have already gone through 8 years of inexperience in the White House and I am not voting for another 4 years of a 'learn-as-you-go program'.