And when the Clintons tried to use race to derail Obama, he countered skillfully by making Super Tuesday a referendum on tolerance and inclusivity, overtly rejecting the racial polarization which seemed to have set in after South Carolina. Underscoring his message with victories in white states like Utah, Idaho, Colorado and North Dakota, he buried the race issue.
While the Clintons went for the knockout blows of winning New York and California, Obama created a fifty state organization to win eac h caucus state. As Hillary’s campaign wasted half a million dollars on flowers, Obama’s husbanded his resources to put teams on the ground in the small states where his organizing paid off and brought him sufficient victories to survive the loss of the two big Super Tuesday states.
And when the Clintons went to full time negatives, Obama carefully parsed the attacks he would answer from those he wouldn’t and disdained to engage in the tit-for-tat negative campaigning, realizing that the process turned voters off more than the negatives themselves ever did.
Will he be a good president? If he is half as skillful in serving as he has been in running, he can’t miss.