I just woke up. I haven’t hit the political websites or turned on MSNBC. Just heard on the radio that John Edwards is dropping out of the presidential race today.
Shocker! Who saw that coming? Nobody, that’s who.
So I wanna put my own amateur analysis out there... see how it stacks up against the real thing, which we’ll be bombarded with on TV all week.
Timing-wise, I suspect Edwards is quitting now to benefit Barack Obama on Super Tuesday.
Think about it. The 10 to 15 percent of voters who’ve gravitated towards Edwards have already decided they’re not wild about Hillary, they want to go another direction. Right?
Edwards steps aside now... to give Obama a boost in next week’s Big Throwdown. Allow Barack and Hillary to debate one-on-one. Right?
A hardcore feminist might call this a typical patriarchal move, ganging up against the girl. (Rapist! Footbinder!) Whatever it is, it changes the game in a fascinating way.
UPDATE (01/30/08): Washington Post political blogger Chris Cillizza reports this piece of instant punditry from Charlie Cook:
"While one can plausibly argue that Edwards withdrawal may unite the anti-Clinton vote, one can also argue that Edwards overwhelmingly white block of supporters come loose and might behave much as other white Democrats have done in the contests after Iowa, not vote for Obama. I don't know which of those arguments will prevail."