TRAIL MIX: Campaign Blogs, the Morning After

By: Emily Vaughan

David Axelrod, chief strategist for Barack Obama, said that despite his losses in Ohio and Texas in yesterday’s primaries, his candidate still has the big lead, says Shailagh Murray at washingontpost.com’s The Trail. Axelrod pointed out that Obama led by 160 delegates and that “when you’ve lost 12 in a row, any good news qualifies as a comeback.”

Last night may not be the last Americans see of Mike Huckabee. Analysts suggested that the former Arkansas governor would make it onto TV, says Brian Stelter at The New York Times’ The Caucus. Republican strategist Mike Murphy said on the MSNBC show “Morning Joe” that Huckabee may “suspend his campaign, hire excellent agents and begin negotiations for a cable TV talk show, all within the next 10 days.”

The caucuses in Texas weren’t a pretty sight. Record turnout in Texas left state Democrats unprepared to handle the volume, and it has resulted in accusations of voter irregularities, says Howard Witt at the Chicago Tribune’s The Swamp. More than 1,000 people showed up at precinct 466, the Barbara Bush Library, and while there were some irregularities, they seemed organizational, not partisan, Witt says.

President Bush will endorse Republican nominee John McCain today, but it will be interesting to look at their body language, says Don Frederick at the L.A. Times’ Top of the Ticket. The two Republicans have often been at odds since they were opponents in the 2000 primary, though they made up, exchanging a hug and a peck in Florida in 2004 when McCain endorsed Bush.

This time around, don’t expect anything so loving. McCain will want to distance himself from Bush’s low approval ratings, but keep him close enough for “help in shoring his credentials as a true-blue Republican,” Frederick

Obama may have a greater foe than Clinton in the coming weeks, says James F. Smith at the Boston Globe’s Political Intelligence. Growing media scrutiny
may hamper Obama, as the press, and the people, are getting wise to his soft treatment by the media. Clinton’s assertions that she was being treated unfairly were bolstered with the resurgence of late night TV and jokes about media worship of Obama, Smith says.

The Clinton campaign got a surprise caller during a last-minute conference call with reporters, says Elizabeth Holmes at The Wall Street Journal’s Washington Wire. Clinton campaign directors talked with reporters about the actions of some Obama supporters to prevent Clinton supporters from casting their votes in Texas. When the call was opened up to questions, Obama legal
adviser Bob Bauer was on the line, accusing the Clinton campaign of being
anti-caucus.

But Clinton’s conflicts with Obama aren’t irreparable. The New York senator hinted that voters still may get to see a Clinton-Obama dream ticket this fall, as long as she’s in the presidential slot, Washington Wire reports.

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