Another win for Obama, this time in Mississippi, but the real news is the increasing bitterness in the contest for the nomination. In a year when there is everything to play for, and a great deal to lose, the Democrats seem hell bent on tearing themselves apart. An excellent analysis of the current stae of play in Economist.com, looking at why the scrap is getting uglier, and what the future may hold,
A campaign that degenerates into name-calling and mud-slinging will hurt Mr Obama more than it does Mrs Clinton. He has campaigned on messages of “change” and “hope” so he faces an unenviable choice in the long run-up to Pennsylvania. If he lets the Clinton team fling the brickbats without retaliation she may set the tone of the campaign. But respond in kind and his message of a new politics is tarnished. Even though he is behind there in the polls, Pennsylvania cannot come soon enough for Mr Obama.
For Clinton, what is at stake is no less than the redemption of Bill’s presidency, and her campaign is his by proxy. In part this is why Obama is so attractive, as he offers a real break from the tarnished past. All this however is mere gaming; the real battle will be with McCain.