Clinton Camp to Press: All We Want is Willing Suspension of Disbelief

| Fri Feb. 29, 2008 4:10 PM EST

The Clinton campaign's press call with reporters this afternoon felt like a scene from a bizarro universe, where the suspension of disbelief was demanded at the door.

Reporters were primed for the call by a memo disseminated by the campaign earlier in the morning that referred to the four primaries on March 4 as "Obama Must-Wins." It cited Obama's spending advantage in Ohio and Texas and the fact that he has campaigned heavily in these states. "Should Senator Obama fail to score decisive victories with all of the resources and effort he is bringing to bear," it said, "the message will be clear: Democrats, the majority of whom have favored Hillary in the primary contests held to date, have their doubts about Senator Obama and are having second thoughts about him as a prospective standard-bearer."

The memo didn't bother to answer some obvious questions, such as, Given that the Clinton campaign has lost 11 primaries in a row, how can Obama losing a few close contests on Tuesday in states where he has trailed in the polls be considered a repudiation of his campaign? And considering that streak of losses, how can this be a must-win for anyone but Clinton?

But on these questions and others, the Clinton representatives on the call, including communications director Howard Wolfson and chief strategist Mark Penn, stuck to the party line, no matter how ridiculous.

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