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Why Obama won’t visit here before the US Presidential Election

Bob Hepburn writes this morning in the Toronto Star asking Obama (figuratively) to come and visit Canada, arguing it would help him “hone his views” on Canada and policy towards us. Unfortunately, I don’t see that happenning. He doesn’t need to use Canada to practice his foreign diplomacy skills, as his tour to the Middle East shows he’s more then capable of handling that.   He also has little incentive to visit a country whose Conservative government tried to sabotage his presidential nomination run in Ohio with those “leaked” documents, in a clumsy attempt to either help defeat him in the Democratic primary or failing that, give the Republicans something to try and weaken him with.

That will change if he becomes President – but it will be interesting to see if Canada is the first foreign country he’ll pay a visit to if that were to occur. Traditionally this country has been a first stop for newly elected presidents. George W. Bush broke that trend when he was elected. Whether Obama follows suit may depend on whether the Conservative government is still in power or not. That’s not a reason to de-elect Harper – there are many better reasons to do so – but his government’s attempted hit on Obama won’t likely be forgotten.

Obama is now “the presumptive Democratic nominee”

…whether Hillary Clinton and her supporters (see her chairman Terry McAuliffe as an extreme example) are willing to admit it or not. Tonight’s 2 primaries plus a flood of superdelegates have ensured that. Here is his victory speech:

I do believe Hillary will concede in the next few days. I can’t believe she would continue fighting on and risk splitting her own party with Obama having clinched the nomination. Tonight’s speech by her was about bravado and not bringing her own supporters down (MSNBC was reporting that the room Hillary in didn’t have working cellphone, tv or laptop access so that none of her supporters knew that Obama had […]

Some reality for Clinton and her supporters

Delegates: Pledged Super Total Needed Obama 1,660.5 315.5 1,976 49 Clinton 1,499.5 279.5 1,779 246 Remaining 86 201 287 (2,025 delegates needed for victory. Totals updated as of May 25, 11:13 pm)

I know there are still Clinton supporters, even up here, that are still claiming Clinton still has a shot at winning, or even claiming that the remaining Democratic super delegates may yet still change their mind, but the numbers don’t lie. Clinton’s run is nearing an end. When the last contests end, Obama will be tantalizingly within reach of the magic number. Anyone who thinks the remaining supers are going to suddenly move to Hillary, particularly with […]

All signs point to a Republican meltdown in November.

There was a special election held in Mississippi last night to fill a seat in Congress. This seat is one that is in deeply conservative territory; it voted for George Bush to be president by a margin of 2-1 in 2004.  In this particular campaign, the Republicans tried to tar the Democratic candidate here with being a Barack Obama supporter, and more importantly, played up Rev. Jeremiah Wright and his remarks and tried to use that against him.

The result? Not good – for the Republicans that is. They lost by an 8 point margin:

For Republicans, Davis’ defeat is viewed as a possible preview for a widespread GOP thrashing in November, and it shows that trying to link local Democrats in conservative districts to Sen. Barack Obama and his former pastor was not a winning strategy.

Now, some people seem to think that Obama will not be able to stand up to the Republican slime machine when it gets into gear, but recent polls show the Republicans face long odds at making that strategy work:

The party’s fundamental situation is terrible: Republicans are saddled with an enormously unpopular president, a war, a troubled economy and a Democratic opposition that’s being energized by important constituent groups.

An analysis of the recent ABC/Washington Post poll shows signs of the Republican’s being in deep trouble. Obama leads McCain in 3 of the 4 regions of the US and even is competitive with McCain in the South – a traditional Republican stronghold.  It also shows Dems are more trusted then Republicans to deal with the US’s problems – by wide margins. Another new poll out this morning shows Obama again beating McCain nationally.

Combine that with the fact that McCain will be under what I think will be a very effective attack – calling him “McSame” – as in the same as Bush and his failed policies and the Republicans in general, as well as exposing him to the public that he’s not as much of a “maverick” Republican as he’s tried to project, and I think you’re going to see a Republican bloodbath at the polls.

It is not a good year to be a Republican, and I can’t say I feel sorry for them. It can’t happen to a worse bunch (except perhaps Stephen Harper and his lot up here).

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