If the Democrats were even half as competent as the Republicans when it came to electoral sheniganery, then maybe the Democrats could nominate Hillary Clinton without fear. But they're not, so they can't.
In a year when people are just dying - dying! - to vote Democratic, a Clinton nomination is the one thing that could give pause to that, for a few reasons.
On the Republican side, it's looking like John McCain is going to wrap up the nomination barring a massive comeback by Romney. Whoever gets the nod, they'll be representing a party in complete disarray. The past eight years have been a sterile lab incubator of almost every right wing policy the GOP has pursued for the past 30 years, both economic and social. And, unsurprisingly, those policies have left the country in a musky pile of shit. Fiscal Republicans are blaming social Repbulicans, social Republicans are blaming fiscal Republicans and everybody is blaming GWB.
So that's what McCain is about to inherit. Another thing he's about to inherit is a tidal wave of electronic vitriol from people like Rush Limbaugh, Michelle Malkin, Ann Coulter, Bill Kristol and the other right wing psychotics. They hate McCain because they don't consider him a true conservaitve. They did consider Bush a true conservative until he totally sucked and now he's not a true conservative any more, either.
The other problem the crazy base has with McCain is that his message on brown people is not consistent. He wants to bomb Iran, which is full of brown people, and that is good. However, he is not in favor of rounding up every Mexican in the country, putting them into a giant catapault and launching them back over the border. That is bad. McCain actually - get this! - wants to treat illegal immigrants as human beings striving for a better life, whatever the cost. What a total dick!
Also, McCain will not arrest woman who get abortions and he plans on keeping the tax rate somewhere above 0%. The man is totally out of control and a horrible representative of right-wing, true conservative values.
The Republicans that consider politics a bloodsport are rumbling about needing to lose this election. That way, they'll have an excuse to blow up the whole crazy coalition and start over from scratch. It's entirely possible that Republican turnout will be remarkably low with McCain on the ticket.
UNLESS...his opponent is Clinton. If there's anybody the crazy GOP base hates more than McCain, it's Bill Clinton. And if there's anybody the crazy base hates more than Bill Clinton, it's Hillary Clinton. And if there's anybody the crazy base hates more than Hillary Clinton...actually, there is nobody the crazy base hates more. She is the ne plus ultra of unbridled hatred. The absolute zero of GOP froth.
So in a year when Republicans are looking for any excuse to stay home on Election Day, the Democrats are considering nominating the ONE candidate that will force every GOP to hold their nose and vote for the lesser of two evils.
And beyond that, by November, McCain will have reached sainthood thanks to the press coverage. The media made up their minds 15 years ago and haven't wavered since. They love, love, LOVE McCain and they despise Clinton with a hatred that simply cannot be put into words. The balance of McCain/Clinton election coverage will make Bush/Gore coverage look like the pinnacle of the industry.
Hillary Clinton is a fine Democrat. And she needs to stay in the Senate. She can take over as the Democrat lion of the Senate when Ted Kennedy retires in a few years. That would be a fantastic role for her. A horrible role would be the glue that puts the Republican vase back together in 2008.