Every signal says the party would be better off with Hillary, and the natural move would be to embrace her and abandon Barack. After all, the process still allows a shift. Why should Barack get the nomination just because the Reverend Wright story didn't unfold until late in the primary season?
The choice between Barack and Hillary is a scary one for Democrats, but it would be easy if they just trusted the process. It's somewhat confusing why they've allowed themselves to be trapped in this box of needing to have Obama be the winner. Is it because of the cash that Barack has showered upon superdelegates?
Allowing Democracy to follow its course wouldn't be so difficult. First, explain to everyone that this is a normal part of the nominating process -- sometimes, at the end of it all, the primaries fail to yield a winner. Happily, though, there's a failsafe built in to resolve the situation -- we go to round two. In round two, the party leaders (superdelegates) get to vote. They are not asked to rubber stamp the leading candidate, otherwise they'd be of no value and their unique status would never have been created. Their job is to use their wisdom and experience and concern for the interests of the party to steer the best candidate to the nomination. To suggest otherwise is silliness.
What we will see next from Democrats is not wisdom, however, but a rush to failure. At a time when superdelegates should start flipping to Hillary, we'll continue to see them announcing for Barack at moments orchestrated by his campaign.
They're heading the wrong way because Clintons make Democrats feel dirty, because Barack is their fantasy, and because they're scared about losing all the new voters they've been signing up, whom they consider to be the future of the party.
Here's the question that Democrats must answer: Is the party's commitment to Barack Obama more important than this election? If his hold on them is strong enough, they'll give him the nomination and throw the election. If not, they'll send him back to the bench to wait for next time, and give the nomination to the only Democrat in the race with the chance to be president -- and the first woman president in U.S. history, at that.
That may not warm the hearts of liberals like a good long toke on the great bong of Barack, but they've got to admit, it's far better than spending the next six months trying to explain why working class folk should embrace the party of Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn.