"I have a much broader base to build a winning coalition on" than Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton has told USA TODAY.
She cited an Associated Press article "that found how Sen. Obama's support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans, is weakening again, and how whites in both states who had not completed college were supporting me."
"There's a pattern emerging here," said Hillary. "These are the people you have to win if you're a Democrat in sufficient numbers to actually win the election. Everybody knows that."
The Democratic Party can't win with just "eggheads and African-Americans," Paul Begala added helpfully.
What Hillary and Begala are saying is politically incorrect, but it is also patently true. Hillary was describing what may now fairly be called the Hillary Democrats -- a.k.a. the ex-Reagan Democrats who did not vote for Obama and may defect to John McCain.
If Obama can win over these voters who gave Hillary big victories in Ohio and Pennsylvania, he is the 44th president. If McCain does not win a goodly slice of these Democrats, he will lose.
Who, exactly, are the Hillocrats, half of whom said in the exit polls from North Carolina and Indiana that, if she loses the nomination, they will stay home or vote for McCain?
They are white, working- and middle-class, Catholic, small-town, rural, unionized, middle-age and seniors, and surviving on less than $50,000 a year. They are the people most belittled by the condescending commentary of Barack behind closed doors out at Sodom on the Bay.
"You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, (where) the jobs have been gone now for 25 years. ... And it's not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations."
In 40 years, two Democrats have won the presidency, Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton, and both did so only after connecting with these folks.
People forget. In 1976, Carter ran as a Naval Academy grad and nuclear engineer, a born-again Baptist and peanut farmer from Plains, Ga., who, in Philadelphia, talked about preserving the "ethnic purity" of the neighborhoods. Clinton first ran as a death-penalty Democrat.
It was Ronald Reagan who cemented the GOP hold of these Nixon-Agnew New Majority Democrats, who are now headed back home.