No Wonder Obama Has Problems With The Latino Vote

Earlier I wondered if it was his presumptive support for race-based affirmative action.   I had forgotten Obama’s flip-flop embrace of the know-nothing wing of the Democratic Party:

Obama in Senate: Star Power, Minor Role – New York Times
To others, though, the mismatch between Mr. Obama’s outside profile and his inside accomplishments wore thin. While some senators spent hours in closed-door meetings over immigration reform in early 2007, he dropped in only occasionally, prompting complaints that he was something of a dilettante.

He joined a bipartisan group, which included Senator John McCain of Arizona, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, and Mr. Kennedy, that agreed to stick to a final compromise bill even though it was sure to face challenges from interest groups on both sides. Yet when the measure reached the floor, Mr. Obama distanced himself from the compromise, advocating changes sought by labor groups. The bill collapsed.

To some in the bipartisan coalition, Mr. Obama’s move showed an unwillingness to take a tough stand.

“He folded like a cheap suit,” said Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina, a close ally of Mr. McCain. “What it showed me is you are not an agent of change. Because to really change things in this place you have to get beat up now and then.”

Obama’s wrong on free trade, health care, Iraq, and immigration.

And I had hoped that immigration was one of the few areas where Obama is at least no-worse than Clinton.

Too bad.

High Quality Peers in Higher Education

Trouble ahead for American colleges:

Math Suggests College Frenzy Will Soon Ease – New York Times
High school seniors nationwide are anxiously awaiting the verdicts from the colleges of their choice later this month. But though it may not be of much solace to them, in just a few years the admissions frenzy is likely to ease. It’s simply a matter of demographics.
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Projections show that by next year or the year after, the annual number of high school graduates in the United States will peak at about 2.9 million after a 15-year climb. The number is then expected to decline until about 2015. Most universities expect this to translate into fewer applications and less selectivity, with most students probably finding it easier to get into college.

America’s University system is the envy of the world. Our competitive, free-market, and subsidized tertiary education institutions are better than anywhere else in the world. Students in India, China, Iran, and other countries dream of going to America to study — the universities of other English-speaking countries (Australia, Britain, Canada) are safeties, and those of Europe and Japan are barely considered.

America should use this chance to increase the quality of American colleges by welcoming more international students.  Providing a green card to every PhD graduate, with certain qualifications,  would be a great way to do that.

Can Obama afford Jim Webb as his VP?

Earlier, I noted that if Hillary wins Pennsylvania, she has a good shot at becoming the Democratic nominee.

Eddie responded that even so, Hillary would definitely lose the popular vote.

Well, maybe:

Hillary Clinton sets her sights on three ways to win – Times Online
However, the new strategy explains why Clinton is prepared to mount an assault on Obama that risks handing victory to McCain in the autumn. It is worth badly wounding her rival because she believes she has found a way to win.

“If she wins big in Pennsylvania, she can rack up a majority of several hundred thousand votes and be in hailing distance of Obama. So stay tuned,” said Wil-liam Galston, an elections expert at the Brookings Institution.

Clinton’s new tactics depend on clearing up a mess in Florida and Michigan, which are banned from seating delegates at the convention because they defied party rules by holding early primary contests.

Obama leads Clinton by nearly 600,000 in the number of votes cast to date, but trails her by 30,000 if the votes of the two “rogue” states are counted. These states are now likely to stage some form of rerun.

Obama’s has failed three times (New Hampshire, Super Tuesday, Ohio-Texas) to “seal the deal” for the Democratic nomination.  Certainly part of the reason is that he’s competing against a tough and experienced politician, Hillary Clinton.  That’s another way of saying that he may not be strong enough to win.

Tom suggests Obama pick Jim Webb as his Vice President.  Purpleslog and I have said so previously.  However, Obama’s striking weakness in the Democratic selection process implies that he may have to pick a VP who can deliver him the nomination (such as a politician from Michigan, Pennsylvania, or Florida) instead.