So far the entire theory rests on the precedent of one candidate: Obama. “If she won,” Martin and Haberman write, “it would suggest that the so-called Obama coalition of young, nonwhite and female voters is transferable to another Democrat.”
As I’ve been writing for a while, I’m extremely dubious. Here are four reasons. First, Obama didn’t really run as a polarizing figure in 2008. He ran as a post-partisan reformer who would end gridlock and fix the failures of the two-term incumbent (as did George W. Bush and Bill Clinton before him).
Second, Obama was a very good politician without much baggage (that the media were willing to report on). Clinton is a mediocre politician with mountainous baggage. Third, Obama’s coalition has never been transferable to any other cause or politician, despite the president’s best efforts. And last, Clinton is running to stay the course.