The Note: Exit Strategies

(And those in both camps aren't quite shooting down talk of a "Dream Ticket" with the certainty they once did. "She is tireless, she is smart, she is capable, so obviously she'd be on anybody's short list," Obama told CNN.)

Never mind that the game isn't over until after the ninth -- and Clinton is still on the field, even while Obama isn't. "The delegate math may be complicated but the electoral math is easy. We need 270 electoral votes to win in November," Clinton said Thursday. "I think West Virginia is a test. It's a test for me, it's a test for Senator Obama."

On the possibility of Obama lighting that cigar early, ABC's Jake Tapper switches sports to issue a warning: "Now Obama wants the game to end early, and he wants the goal posts moved to the 10-yard line. This strikes me as possibly a huge miscalculation."

If West Virginia is a test, it's one Obama is practically skipping -- his current schedule doesn't include a West Virginia stop until Monday, just one day before the state's primary. And USA Today tells us why.

Yet . . . this isn't a West Virginia lede Camp Clinton would design: "Democratic presidential aspirant Sen. Hillary Clinton gave no indication she was pulling out of the presidential race anytime soon Thursday," Tom Searls writes in the Charleston Gazette.

If Clinton wants to play nice, she may not want to utter phrases "white Americans" and "whites" again, as she did in that USA Today interview.

"I can't believe Sen. Clinton would say anything that dumb," Rep. Charlie Rangel, D-N.Y. (and still a Clinton supporter, despite that bear hug on the House floor), tells the New York Daily News.

"This is exactly the kind of talk that's going to make superdelegates nervous," Stephanopoulos said on "GMA."

Perhaps she's more realistic than she's letting on: "Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's visit to Capitol Hill this week may have been more about weighing her support than it was about wooing superdelegates," Politico's Ben Smith and Amie Parnes report.

"According to a senior Democratic aide, Clinton asked some uncommitted superdelegates if they could commit to her privately -- without the political risks of a public endorsement -- so that she could gauge whether she has the support she feels she needs to remain a viable candidate."

(To what extent does the Clintons' distance from reality these next few days and weeks line up with Sen. Clinton's ability to stay in the race -- and, at the very least, get out on her own terms?)

Maybe Bill believes this, or maybe he just wants to: "Don't believe all this stuff you read in the press, she can still win this thing if you vote for her big enough," the former president said, per ABC's Sarah Amos.

He probably does believe this: "Hillary is still in this race despite being heavily outspent and despite one-sided media coverage," Clinton said, per the Beckley Register-Herald's Matthew Hill.

He definitely does believe this: "There is nobody in America who has more credibility [on healthcare] and for you or any other person to claim she didn't work on it, is the craziest thing I ever heard," he told a sharp questioner on the trail, per ABC's Sarah Amos.

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