With the former Democratic front-runner facing a potential second loss in New Hampshire Californians may wonder if there will be anything to decide on February 5th when this states primary election is held. Hillary Clinton supporters say they aren't worried, yet.
This weekend's debate in New Hampshire saw Senator Clinton come out swinging at her Primary opponents. But today she became teary-eyed admitting exhaustion from the pace and intensity of the campaign.
So, what's going on? A lot says a pair of local political observers who watched the weekend developments on the East Coast this morning when Senator Clinton addressed a group of women with a weary appearance and unexpected emotion. "Hillary Clinton, (D) Presidential Candidate: You know this is very personal for me, it's not just political, and it's not just public. (Voice cracking) I see what's happening, we have to reverse it. (Eyes now red, voice cracking more) Fresno Pacific University Political Science professor, Ken Friesen viewed that news clip and says Clinton is just exhausted and disappointed but admits a more cynical eye might suggest it's a political play for sympathy. "Kenneth Friesen, Political Science Professor: My sense is that's really Hillary. It's a combination of her being very, very tired and it's a combination of a lot of surprises because she was not expecting these kinds of results."
Over the weekend the Senator from New York didn't hold back her anger when both Barack Obama and former Senator John Edwards teamed up to challenge her ability to create 'change' during the New Hampshire debate. "Hillary Clinton: I'm not just running on the promise of change, I'm running on thirty-five years of change." Fresno council member Cynthia Sterling, a California Clinton Campaign co-chair, insists the Senator is still the candidate who's ready to be President. "Cynthia Sterling: She didn't expect this to be easy, she never did. I'd rather look at someone who has had the background who has already been through the trenches." The candidate meantime is plowing ahead and admitting her strategy needs a tune up going forward into the next round of January primaries saying: "If a campaign doesn't evolve, it's dead." She will need the momentum says Professor Friesen when California leads twenty-one states in primaries on February 5th. He adds: If she doesn't make some changes voters will continue to look at Obama as a real potential, viable candidate."
Sterling believes Clinton will recover and wind up the best choice in 2008. Cynthia Sterling told us: "New Hampshire? We're surprised of course (but) the conversation and the rhetoric, bring 'em back to the points and the challenges that they really have to look at, then you'll see she's really the number one candidate."
The road to California includes a series of primaries before what is being called - Tsunami Tuesday with its twenty-one states - on February 5th. Professor Friesen believes California will still be very significant in choosing who will head the Democratic Party in spite of the first shocker in Iowa and what may be a second upset in New Hampshire.