Tuesday, May 20, 2008


Today's two primaries will give Barack Obama the Democratic nomination for President. All my doubt, and there wasn't much, was obliterated by this video of Obama's record-breaking crowd of 75,000 in Portland, Oregon.

Hillary may get a big win in Kentucky, but the hog is in the tunnel. It doesn't take a genius -- or even CNN's delegate calculator -- to predict Obama will win Oregon by a huge margin.

According to conventional wisdom, he will win enough delegates today to reach critical mass. That should loosen up a good many super- delegates, especially the ones whose states have gone for Obama already. Those from states Hillary won may have to wait for the convention out of respect for her supporters in those states. But as far as I'm concerned, it's a done deal.

I could not be more excited. For a long time I've held back my support for Obama out of loyalty to Hillary. Her comments in West Virginia took me off the hook. Whether they were racist in intent -- "hard working voters, white voters" -- that's the way they came out.

She should not have played that card. By playing it she gave me and, I imagine, many others who have stuck by her out of loyalty, a reason to get off the bus.

To be sure, Hillary has achieved an historical victory. From now on, American girls will grow up thinking they can be President. Even if she doesn't win the nomination, she has smashed the big glass ceiling. For that we all owe her a great deal of gratitude. We should thank her -- over and over.

Meanwhile, I've come to agree with those who say she should not be Obama's running mate. You've heard a hundred reasons, but the most important one, in my book, is we need her in the Senate. We don't just need to take back the Presidency. We need the House and Senate (not to mention the Supreme Court, but we'll get to that later). Her experience and seniority as a Senator will be essential to the changes an Obama presidency promises. And he needs to start fresh. We all do.

The polls have opened. Let us watch history unfold.