The timing was finally right for me to take a Clinton campaign conference call, and I will initially report what I consider to have been the single most important moment of the call. A reporter for the Financial Times asked whether Senator Clinton's criticism of Senator Obama on the Commander-in-Chief question didn't suggest she would prefer Senator McCain be president than Senator Obama. This framing has been viral in the shrillosphere, and there has been much rending of garments and tearing of hair. Clinton Communications Director Howard Wolfson, however, gave an answer that should (but probably won't) put that dishonest framing to bed.
Wolfson said Senator McCain's stand on Iraq, including the "100 years" comment, is enough, in itself, for Senator Clinton to prefer Senator Obama to Senator McCain. He also very pointedly made clear that if Senator Obama wins the nomination, Senator Clinton will "enthusiastically support" Senator Obama. That's it. He also pointed out that Obama campaign manager David Plouffe has called Senator Clinton "one of the most secretive politicians in America today," and said that she will "say-or-do-anything-to-win." In other words, this is campaign season, and the candidates are hitting each other hard- both candidates are hitting each other hard- but that should not be misconstrued or misinterpreted. And if anyone really believes Clinton's Commander-in-Chief attacks are unique or new, or uniquely or newly hard-hitting, I suggest they do a little research on the negative attacks used against Howard Dean, four years ago.
But back to the bottom line: Senator Clinton clearly and unequivocally would support Senator Obama over McCain, should Obama win the nomination.
I'm under the weather, today, but I may have more on the call, later.