Monday, February 4, 2008

Predictions from the Center of the Bubble

My brother, who lives a few blocks away from me in Oakland, often says that we live in a bubble in a bubble in a bubble. By that he means that the Berkeley/Oakland/Piedmont area, which is in the Bay Area, which is in California, is not like the rest of the country.

Of course, he's right. Oakland is the most diverse city in the country. Our congressional rep, Barbara Lee, is the most liberal in all of congress. Mixed race and same sex couples are so common place that they warrant nary a second glance, much less any discussion. The major city in the area (San Fran) pays for the sex change operations of it employees for goodness sakes. And we think all of this is "normal."

Still, it's hard to ignore that the support for Obama borders on ecstatic, while the support for Clinton seems tepid at best. At Obama visibility events (where a small group of supporters stand around waving signs), passers-by honk and wave with wild enthusiasm. By contrast, the one visibility event for Clinton that I have seen was greeted with polite indifference. I almost felt bad for the guy and his two young children who were waving Clinton '08 signs. They seemed earnest in their support, but everyone around them pretended that they weren't there. I almost felt bad enough for them to honk. Almost.

Against that backdrop, I give you my predictions. Obama is going to carry the Barbara Lee's district (the East Bay) overwhelmingly. He's going to carry California convincingly (the only fly in that ointment might be the early absentee votes, which may have swung Hillary’s way). He's going to get win the popular vote on Super Tuesday by enough of a margin that the super delegates, many of whom had been supporting Clinton, are going to swing the nomination his way.

On the Republican side, McCain will also take it.

By Wednesday, it is going to be pretty clear that the general election will be Obama-McCain

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