Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Letter to Obama on Closing the Deal

Here’s some advice to the Obama campaign on closing the deal:

You aren’t going to close the deal by arguing over superdelegates, popular vote, or counting Michigan and Florida. These only matter if you haven’t won. If you have won, they are unimportant. Letting DNC Chairman Howard Dean broker a resolution between the two remaining campaigns is also a loser strategy. If you have won, it’s your right and responsibility to broker the deal yourself. Face facts, beating Hillary Clinton is the biggest thing on your resume. You need to do it well, and you need to take all the credit. You cant let someone else do it for you.

It's time to claim your victory. You do not need Hillary Clinton to concede defeat. Understand that she can't quit until the final primary is held and the Michigan and Florida situations are resolved. You do need to claim your victory. Just be a gentleman and congratulate her on giving you a run for your money.

Next, send your top people to meet with her top people at the staff level in the first or second week of June. Then you should offer to meet with Hillary yourself. Here are the five key points for your people to make in those meetings:

(1) We’ve won both more total delegates and more pledged delegates than you. You have to know that we will get the nomination at the convention, even if you aren't quite ready to publicly acknowledge it. You also have to know that there is no way we can step aside and let you be the nominee. Our voters would never accept that.

(2) Do you want to be considered for the VP slot? We need someone for that job who can unite the party around our agenda and help us win electoral votes in November. You’re one of several people who could help us do that, and we do want to look at everyone. Obviously your primary showing will factor high. But to be considered first you are going to have to drop out by officially suspending your campaign. We’re going to need to make a decision on this soon, and as long as you’re still an active candidate we just can’t consider you for VP.

(3) Do you want the Michigan and Florida delegates to be counted? If you do suspend you campaign, we can assure you that we will drop our objections to seating those delegates.

(4) We can’t cover your campaign debts, but can offer you a fair sum for your mailing lists and other campaign assets that could help us win in November.

(5) What else can we do to work together? We’ve noticed that your daughter Chelsea is a fine public speaker who relates well to people her age and speaks passionately on the issues that concern Democrats. We could find a place for her to speak in favor of Obama at the convention.

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