Neo-conservatives are finding a new control tower in the McCain campaign, with General David Petraeus and much of the Pentagon as close allies. The most important issue for the dominant elite is winning the Iraq War [or at least not losing it], deepening the wars in Afghanistan and Pakistan, continuing to threaten Iran, and organize a new global power structure around the assumptions of the war on terrorism.
In John McCain they have a candidate who can win in November. Making jokes about his age or health or flashes of temper is a bankrupt Democratic approach to defeating him. The question is whether a Democratic alternative on Iraq and foreign policy can become an immediate theme, or whether the Democrats will settle for arguing that Iraq is still a “mistake” against the powerful appeal of McCain, Petraeus and their echo chamber.
As Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton head towards a close finish, the looming question may be how the Democratic Party handles Michigan and Florida. It could doom the party if those bogus primaries are included in the Clinton tally.
The only solution, as Steve Cobble has suggested, is to demand that Howard Dean and the Democratic National Committee pay if necessary for the Michigan and Florida races to be reset, in May or June.
It was the decision of Dean and the DNC to set the rules that Michigan and Florida refused to obey, and it is for Dean and the DNC to refuse to ratify elections that were held in defiance of those rules. If the original Michigan and Florida outcomes are simply rejected by the convention, those voters will claim disenfranchisement.
Therefore the caucus and primaries will have to take place again if necessary. The Democrats cannot nominate a candidate against McCain on the basis of contaminated and illegitimate votes.