In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review April 24, 2008 / 19 Nissan 5768

Pennsylvania results mean Clinton could win — sort of

By Michael Barone

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Finally, six weeks after the last primary, Pennsylvania has voted. Polls taken just before the race showed Hillary Clinton ahead of Barack Obama by 49.5 percent to 43.4 percent. The actual vote was 55 percent to 45 percent with Clinton winning (official county results here).

Some interesting patterns here. As I noted previously, Obama carries blacks, academics, and state capitals—and not much else. He carried seven of Pennsylvania's 67 counties: Philadelphia County (44 percent black in 2000, by 65 percent to 35 percent), Delaware County (suburban Philadelphia, 15 percent black in 2000 and probably higher today, by 55 percent to 45 percent), Chester County (historically Republican, affluent suburban and exurban, by 55 percent to 45 percent), Lancaster County (heavily Republican, Pennsylvania Dutch country and exurban, by 64 percent to 36 percent), Dauphin County (state capital, 18 percent black in 2000, second-highest percentage in state, by 58 percent to 42 percent), Union County (Bucknell University, by 52 percent to 48 percent), and Centre County (Penn State University, by 60 percent to 40 percent).

And, as I noted in the same column, Clinton carries Jacksonians—the descendants of those Scots-Irish, Scots Lowlanders, and northern Englishmen who settled the Appalachian chain starting in Pennsylvania in the 18th century and heading southwest, ultimately to Texas, in the 19th. Clinton won 70 percent or more of the vote in 15 counties in the mountains, including the old anthracite country in the east and the bituminous coal country in the west. She won 74 percent in Lackawanna County (Scranton), the home base of Sen. Bob Casey, who endorsed Obama, and she won 79 percent in Fayette County (Monongahela Valley south of Pittsburgh). The latter is on the border of West Virginia, and the results here, as well as in earlier primaries in Ohio, Maryland, and Virginia counties adjacent to West Virginia, suggest that Clinton will win more than 70 percent of the vote in the primary there May 13. Sean Oxendine's excellent map makes this point graphically.

Here's another graphic from blogger Soren Dayton showing the black percentage by census tract in Philadelphia and the voting results by ward there. There's obviously a huge correlation between race and voting, with heavily white wards casting big margins against Obama. Note also that the most heavily Hispanic wards voted heavily for Clinton: ward 7 (70 percent to 30 percent) and ward 19 (65 percent to 35 percent). Hispanic voters may have contributed to Clinton's 60 percent in Lehigh County (Allentown) and 58 percent in Berks County (Reading); those counties were 10 percent Hispanic in 2000, the highest percentages in the state. As I noted in a previous blog post, Latinos, like Jacksonians, have proved a heavily pro-Clinton (anti-Obama?) constituency.

Is Pennsylvania a game-changer, as some Clinton backers proclaim? On the one hand, you could argue that it is just a duplication of the result in Ohio. In my March 28 post projecting the results in a way optimistic to Clinton, I projected a 60 percent to 40 percent margin for her in Pennsylvania and only a 55 percent to 45 percent margin for Obama in North Carolina. Now we know that Clinton's margin in Pennsylvania was only 55 percent to 45 percent, while recent polls show Obama with 59 percent of the two-candidate vote in North Carolina. Moreover, polling in the other May 6 state, Indiana, shows Clinton with nothing like the 60 percent to 40 percent lead I projected there (though the firms showing Obama ahead are unknown to me, so I am not convinced of their results).

My March 28 projections showed Clinton ending up, after the June 3 contests, with fewer pledged delegates (elected in primaries and caucuses) than Obama but more popular votes—whether or not you include the Florida and Michigan primary results (which the Democratic National Committee has ruled don't count because they were too early) and whether or not you include the imputed totals for the Iowa, Nevada, Washington, and Maine caucuses (where the state Democratic parties provided no count of those who participated). In Pennsylvania, Clinton fell short of the trajectory that would take her there.

Even so, Clinton now leads in the popular vote, if you include the Florida and Michigan results, by 121,943 votes. And even if you include the imputed totals for the Iowa, Nevada, Washington, and Maine caucuses, she's ahead by 11,721 votes. It seems to me that this provides the Clinton campaign with an important talking point, though one they're probably reluctant to use over the next two weeks. Reluctant, because the likely Obama victory in North Carolina could erase this popular-vote lead, and) an offsetting Clinton margin in Indiana seems unlikely (or at least risky to project from current polling). But looking ahead from May 6, Clinton is likely to regain that popular-vote lead (including Florida and Michigan) and quite possibly could gain a popular-vote lead counting just Florida and not the more problematic (because Obama was not on the ballot there) Michigan. She'll get big margins in West Virginia on May 13 and Kentucky on May 20, and it's not clear Obama will get a big margin in Oregon on May 20; Obama won the nonbinding February 19 primary in Washington only narrowly. If Clinton wins big in Puerto Rico on June 1, as the one poll I've seen there suggests, that will far outshadow in popular votes any Obama margins in South Dakota and Montana on June 3.

The Obama campaign has had much success selling the press and some superdelegates on the notion that the candidate who wins the most pledged delegates has some moral entitlement to superdelegates' votes. The idea is that the unelected superdelegates should not overturn the verdict of the elected pledged delegates. But I think there are serious arguments against as well as for this proposition. The superdelegates themselves were elected, and to positions that everyone knew carried an entitlement to be a delegate to the Democratic National Convention. A minority of them are elected public officials; most are state party chairmen and members of the Democratic National Committee. You can argue that the party officials were chosen by only a relatively few party insiders, but that's arguably true of pledged delegates selected in caucuses as well. In both cases, everyone knew or could have known the rules, and those who chose to participate had influence over the outcome, while those who didn't, didn't.

As it happens, something like three quarters of Obama's current advantage in pledged delegates comes from delegates elected in caucuses. The Clinton people might argue that these aren't as legitimate as delegates selected in primaries because they were chosen by so few people (perhaps 1.5 million as against 30-some million in primaries). But the Obama people have a perfectly good reply when they say that the Clinton people knew the rules and that if they didn't play competently, the side that did shouldn't be penalized. The problem is, the same argument could be deployed in favor of superdelegates' supporting Clinton. The Obama people could have lobbied these superdelegates better or, back when they were selected, acted to choose different superdelegates more amenable to Obama.

It seems to me that Clinton's current popular-vote lead (with Florida and Michigan) and her likely post-June 3 popular-vote lead (with Florida and Michigan) and possible post-June 3 popular-vote lead (with Florida but not Michigan) give her a talking point with superdelegates. The talking point is that she is the choice of the people. The Obama side can respond, plausibly, by saying that caucus wins produce only small popular-vote margins (or imputed popular-vote margins, as in Iowa, Nevada, Washington, and Maine) and that if those states had primaries, they would have produced bigger Obama margins. To which the Clinton people can reply that Obama has consistently done better in caucuses than in primaries (as in Texas, where he lost the primary and won the caucus) and that his percentages in caucus states if they had held primaries would have been smaller and that in some such cases he would have lost caucus states if they had held primaries. The Obama side can also say that Florida and Michigan shouldn't be counted, because they were held too early and because Obama wasn't even on the ballot in Michigan. But real people did vote there, and in Michigan prominent Obama supporters urged people to vote for "uncommitted," which got a respectable 40 percent of the vote, to Clinton's 55 percent. And then you can get into arguments about the imputed vote in the four caucus states.

The important thing here is that all, or almost all, these arguments, on both sides, are plausible. Reasonable people can advance and believe them. And supporters of the two candidates will, reasonably, advance the reasonable arguments that serve their cause. There is no entirely value-neutral basis, no one moral yardstick, to determine which set of arguments is the more legitimate. Reasonable people will disagree, as they call on the superdelegates to make their decisions.

My sense is that the superdelegates don't want to make their own decisions; they want to ratify someone else's decision. This was underscored when I watched North Carolina Rep. Brad Miller being interviewed on the Fox News election program last night. Miller has a district with a large black percentage and with white-majority rural counties. His black constituents are probably numerous enough to carry the district for Obama; his white constituents will probably vote heavily for Clinton. And he, to paraphrase an old joke, is always with his constituents. He wants to ratify, not decide. The problem is that the results are sending us to a situation in which superdelegates have to decide which decisions they will ratify.

The Pennsylvania primary seems to be sending us to a situation in which Obama will clearly have the most pledged delegates and Clinton will be able to claim that she has the most popular votes. Play by the rules! Count every vote! We will hear the same cries we heard in the struggle for Florida's electoral votes in November and December 2000. The news media are trying to keep careful count of the superdelegates' preferences. Which leads me to ask this question: How would you like to be the superdelegate who casts, or is presented by the media as casting, the decisive vote? The vote that will determine whether Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton is the Democratic nominee. The vote that will determine whether you are overriding the delegates elected by the people or whether you are overriding the people who have cast the votes. The vote that will determine whether the party rejects the first black with a serious chance to be elected president or the party rejects the first woman with a serious chance to be elected president.

Even to be part of a large group of superdelegates that is seen to have cast the decisive votes is to be in a position of political peril and the focus of furious discord. To be the single superdelegate seen as casting the decisive vote is to be in the position of the senator who cast the single decisive vote against the conviction and removal from office of President Andrew Johnson. He was not heard from again until John Kennedy wrote (or had ghostwritten for him) Profiles in Courage 87 years later. Which superdelegate wants to volunteer for that position or find himself or herself in it after a game of political musical chairs?

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JWR contributor Michael Barone is a columnist at U.S. News & World Report. Comment by clicking here.

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