Above, a pretty sunset in Knoxville. Meanwhile, in Puerto Rico, Hillary ended up winning by about 142,000. By my armchair calculations, Obama still leads by 35,000 in the count that includes the caucus states, Florida & Michigan, and counts Uncommitted for Obama.
UPDATE: My armchair calculations were a bit off; Real Clear Politics puts Obama’s lead in that count at 44,605.
Basically, barring huge upsets in South Dakota and Montana (both in turnout and in result), Clinton will only be the “popular vote winner” in the counts that either: a) give her the benefit of a Soviet-style, 328,309 to zero “victory” in Michigan, and/or b) exclude and thus effectively disenfranchise the caucus states of Iowa, Nevada, Maine and Washington, in direct contradiction of her recent statement that “I want to be sure that all 50 states are counted,” not to mention her 2007 pledge to snub the Michigan and Florida primaries because of the “unique and special role” played by, among others, Iowa and Nevada, which she now excludes from her count.
Fashion Designer Yves Saint Laurent has died in Paris, French media report.
With 14% percent of the precincts reporting, Hillary Clinton leads Barack Obama by 67% to 33% in Puerto Rico — and, more importantly for Hillary’s hopes of a “popular vote” win, by a raw vote margin of 22,253 votes to 10,924 votes. So far, then, the results corroborate anecdotal reports of surprisingly low turnout.
If we assume that 14% of the precincts means roughly 14% of the votes, and if we further assume that the margin will remain roughly constant across the remainder of the island, Hillary’s current 11,329-vote edge translates into roughly an 80,000-vote victory, which is not nearly enough to earn her an arguably plausible “win” in the national popular vote count (barring major upsets in South Dakota and Montana).
Even if Hillary’s margin ends up being 100,000 or 110,000, it won’t be enough. Hillary needed her Puerto Rico margin to get well into the 100,000’s to have any shot at winning the national “popular vote” without the benefit of a) a Saddam Hussein-style, 328,309 to zero “victory” in Michigan and/or b) the indefensible exclusion of four caucus states that held valid elections.
Bottom line: unless overall turnout and/or Hillary’s support is much higher in the precincts that haven’t reported yet, Hillary now has virtually no chance of earning a claim on the popular vote that isn’t facially ridiculous, undemocratic and absurd.
UPDATE: With 56 percent of the precincts reporting, Hillary now has roughly a 70,000-vote lead, which extrapolates to approximately 125,000. Still not enough unless you only give Obama his “exit poll share” of the Uncommitted vote in Michigan, and maybe not even then, depending on what happens in South Dakota and Montana. Also, given that the DNC gave Obama more than his share of the Uncommitted vote, and given that Obama unquestionably would have gotten more votes in a “real” primary than Uncommitted got, I’d say a count that gives him only a 73% share of Uncommitted stretches the definition of “arguably plausible” somewhat. But that’s the only arguably plausible count — or perhaps arguably arguably plausible? — that Hillary now has a shot at.
Hillary Clinton will win the Puerto Rico Democratic primary by a wide margin, CNN projects.
An update on this morning’s Universal Studios blaze:
A fire at Universal Studios has destroyed a set from "Back to the Future," the King Kong exhibit and a video vault containing more than 40,000 videos and reels.
Los Angeles County fire Captain Frank Reynoso says the blaze broke out just before dawn Sunday on a backlot stage at the 400-acre property. The fire has been contained.
Officials say the iconic courthouse square from "Back to the Future," has been destroyed, and the famous clocktower that enabled star Michael J. Fox’s character to time travel has been damaged.
Quick! Find the De Lorean, give it 1.21 gigawatts of power, go back in time 12 hours, and stop the fire from happening! :)
On a happy note, it seems there are duplicates of the videos and reels that were destroyed.
After yesterday’s Rules & Bylaws Committee decision, Obama has 2,052 delegates (including Edwards pledged dels who have declared for Obama), and the new “magic number” is 2,117. That puts him 65 away from clinching the nomination.
Assuming conservative projections of 22 pledged delegates in Puerto Rico today, and 8 each in South Dakota and Montana on Tuesday, he needs 27 more delegates — out of 218.5 undeclared superdelegates and Edwards pledgees.
The only question, really, is whether he’ll get those 27 delegates by the time he takes to the stage in Minnesota Tuesday night, so he can declare victory then and there. I wouldn’t be surprised if a bunch of supers declare for Obama within, say, an hour after the polls close in Montana and Souta Dakota.
One thing he won’t necessary wait for, before declaring victory, is a Clinton concession. Reportedly, however, Clinton is coming to terms with the fact that she’s going to lose, so a concession may actually happen.
More than 100 Los Angeles-area firefighters are battling a large fire on a back lot at Universal Studios, fire authorities said.
There were also reports of an explosion in the Southern California amusement park, said Los Angeles County Fire Capt. Frank Reynoso.
The three-alarm blaze began about 4:45 a.m. PT (7:45 a.m. ET) Sunday and reportedly damaged two “prop” buildings, including a chapel, and a popular ride called the “Cyclone,” Reynoso said.
“It will be awhile before we have it under control,” he said.
Television footage showed the blaze burning through the roofs of structures at the park and large plumes of smoke.
Firefighters were dropping water on the blaze from helicopters.
“We don’t know what the cause of this is,” Reynoso said.
Reynoso said he heard reports that filming may have been going on when the fire broke out.
CNN TV said something about the “film vault” burning.