Have Clinton and Obama really cleared the 2008 field?

Though I disagree with his central thesis, Dan Balz has an excellent piece that's well worth reading in today's Washington Post in which he implies that, between Hillary Clinton's (D-NY) money and name recognition and Barack Obama's (D-IL) sheer star power, the 2008 Democratic presidential primary is all but over.

You can go here to read Balz's article, but I have to say that, while Clinton and Obama have clearly been defined by the media as the apparent front-runners, this is not all over by a long shot.

The fact is, nobody knows what's going to happen politically in 2007 and, at this stage of the process leading to the 1992 presidential election, all people thought about a certain Arkansas Governor was that he had given a long, boring speech at the 1988 Democratic convention -- and things seemed to work out just fine for him.

Evan Bayh (D-IN), Russ Feingold (D-WI) and former Virginia Governor Mark Warner have already removed themselves from contention. It truly saddened me when Feingold took his hat out of the ring as I believe he is one of the few national politicians who has shown guts and true leadership during the harrowing Bush years. As for Bayh, I had already penned a column called "Evan Who?" that I decided to kill after he dropped out, but it was predicated on how closely I watch the United States Senate and the fact that Bayh is so far off the legislative radar screen you need extreme Google dexterity to even find him in the Congressional Record.

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