Byline: Joseph Evans, SPECIAL TO THE WASHINGTON TIMES
Sen. Barack Obama has his hands full as he runs for the Democratic Party's nomination for president.
His chief rival has several advantages. First, Sen. Hillary Clinton has name recognition with a tested campaign team and surrogates who are willing to embarrass themselves, and afterward make insincere apologies for their unfounded accusations. Second, she has subtly crafted a well-coded message suggesting that she is the candidate with experience; and remember this began while really experienced Sen. Joe Biden and Sen. Chris Dodd were still in the race. In fact, she is claiming to be the establishment's candidate.
Third, Mr. Obama's rival is not just the first serious woman presidential candidate, a point which is so often repeated by accommodating pundits, but with critical rhetorical analysis; she is a white woman, enjoying the establishment's power and cultural advantage it affords over African American Obama. And with it, she galvanized large percentages of the Democratic Party's women's vote in Iowa, New Hampshire and Nevada, mostly white women. Then there is Bill.
The former president is campaigning like he is the candidate. He seems to be using his celebrity and experience to usurp union leaders, intimidate casino managers and exploit his connections with television media and editorial boards, swaying their commentary and opinions. In the recent Nevada caucus, Mr. Clinton ranted about a so-called unfair voter advantage for Mr. Obama, who won the culinary union's endorsement, and then, Mr. Clinton claimed that the Obama campaign was behind an unsubstantiated voter suppression conspiracy. It is reported that "Bill Clinton eschewed the official union endorsement" and walked through casinos to hand-slap with rank-and-file members.
Scott Spradling, the political director of WMUR, an ABC affiliate in Manchester, New Hampshire, did not behave as a neutral debate moderator, but like a Clinton surrogate, throwing his journalist's caution and objectivity to the wind. During the Republican debate, Mr. Spradling asked the candidates about Mr. Obama's experience, knowing well that Mr. Obama was backstage and unable to refute their charges or redress their claims. Many have felt that he was trying to unduly manipulate undecided New Hampshire voters.
During the Democratic debate, he alleged that Mr. Obama and former Sen. …