"If you have a social need, you're with Hillary," the aide said. "If you want Obama to be your imaginary hip black friend and you're young and you have no social needs, then he's cool."It really is masterful -- if disgusting -- politics. Even if this turns out to be a misunderstanding or overheated rhetoric among informal advisers, they still polarize the campaigns and make Obama a niche candidate. Obama becomes the definitive "black candidate" of a black constituency, no matter how hard he tries to be the candidate who's moved beyond race. Certain white voters will perceive him differently, and the Clintons maintain plausible deniability. Maybe it bodes well for her performance in a general election. That it risks starting a war within the Democratic Party is secondary -- all that's ever matter is their own survival.
In light of Bill's exploitation of Ricky Ray Rector,* none of this should be surprising.
*Rector, a black man with an IQ of 70, shot a police officer and then attempted to kill himself. He believed that prison guards were throwing chickens and alligators into his jail cell, imitated an ape, and on the night of his execution asked a prison guard for a slice of pecan pie before bed, not realizing that he was about to be killed. Before his death, he also stated an intention to vote Bill Clinton for president. In 2002, the Supreme Court ruled that executing the retarded is unconstitutional. For Clinton, it was all an opportunity to prove death penalty bona fides.