The Note: Hopes and Dreams


Yet Clinton's purchase of seven additional weeks allows her to argue against Obama as she positions herself against McCain. "By defying expectations with convincing victories in two major states, Clinton will likely be able to quiet the calls for her to withdraw from the race and focus her energies on the next big primary," Time's Jay Newton-Small reports. "If Clinton wins there she can at least try to claim that she alone won all the 'big' states and has the best shot at winning the general election -- an argument she would surely use to try to convince Democratic super delegates to help her secure the nomination."

Obama strategist David Axelrod provides a hint of what's to come: "There are many questions that they haven't answered for all their yammering about how unfairly they've been treated. What's good for the goose is good for the gander."

Camp Clinton issues a jaunty set of talking points to its surrogates on Wednesday, with this sentence in bold (just above mentions of the campaign's two favorite five-letter words -- Rezko and NAFTA): "Sen. Obama found himself on the defensive on whether he is ready to be President. Questions about whether he is ready to take that 3 am phone call and be commander in chief abound."

All eyes settle on the Keystone State (earning its nickname this year, as the road to Pennsylvania Avenue heads through good old PA): "It could be like Iowa on steroids," state Democratic Party chairman T.J. Rooney tells the Philadelphia Inquirer's Angela Couloumbis and Mario F. Cattabiani.

They write: "Picture national media crews doing live shots from a small deli in Scranton. Or an old steel mill in Pittsburgh. Or an inner-city church in Philadelphia. And millions of dollars pouring in for television ads featuring the two candidates and their positions."

And ABC's Kate Snow spies an interesting sign at Clinton's victory party: "Meet me in Indiana!" The Indiana primary is May 6.

The most encouraging sign for Clinton: At least for one day, her base came home. "Latinos, working-class voters, women and late deciders helped Hillary Clinton overcome Barack Obama's recent winning streak," ABC polling director Gary Langer writes. Her key groups -- "more Latinos in Texas, more lunch-bucket voters in Ohio -- [gave] Clinton much-needed wins after her string of defeats since Feb. 9. She also did well with late deciders, winning those who made up their minds in the final few days by 18 points in Ohio and 23 in Texas."

Another key point: Experience didn't get destroyed by change. "While the theme of change continued to resonate in Ohio and Texas, it wasn't by as wide a margin as in most previous primaries."

"Hillary Clinton's victory in the tight Texas primary race largely came down to whether voters valued change or experience," Clay Robison and Peggy Fikac write in the San Antonio Express-News. "And it also hinged on race and ethnicity."

"Clinton carried many of the groups that formed the early backbone of her campaign," Mark Z. Barabak writes in the Los Angeles Times. :She won the votes of 2 in 3 white women and almost 6 in 10 white men. . . . Clinton also enjoyed an edge among voters making less than $50,000 a year, who made up about half the electorate."

Your bottom line: She's not dead yet. "You guys keep trying to bury us, but we keep rising up," Clinton campaign chairman Terry McAuliffe tells The Washington Post's Dana Milbank, "pretending to claw his way out of a grave."

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