Barack Obama‘s Iowa win really hit Hillary Clinton.
The Senator from New York lags ten points behind Obama with only 28% of likely primary votes and the wear and tear brought her to tears:
The last question of the Q&A breakfast session came from Maryann Pernold, a 64-year-old undecided Democrat. Pernold said that as a woman “I know it’s hard to get out of the house and get ready,” she said. “Who does your hair?”
“It’s not easy, it’s not easy,” Clinton said shaking her head. Her eyes began to get watery as she finished answering the question, “I couldn’t do it if I didn’t just passionately believe it was the right thing to do,” she said. “I have so many ideas for this country and I just don’t want to see us fall backwards as a nation. This is very personal for me,” she said to a quiet round of supportive applause. “It’s about our country, it’s about our kids’ future, it’s really about all of us together,” she said tearing up, her voice cracking.
It’s tempting to write this off as a political ploy, but we saw the footage and Clinton’s not looking good. Things are getting so bad, in fact, that some people – Matt Drudge – are claiming her camp’s going to close up shop:
Facing a double-digit defeat in New Hampshire, a sudden collapse in national polls and an expected fund-raising drought, Senator Hillary Clinton is preparing for a tough decision: Does she get out of the race? And when?!
“She can’t take multiple double-digit losses in New Hampshire, South Carolina and Nevada,” laments one top campaign insider to the DRUDGE REPORT. “If she gets too badly embarrassed, it will really harm her. She doesn’t want the Clinton brand to be damaged with back-to-back-to-back defeats.”
Meanwhile, Democrat hopeful John Edwards has confided to senior staff that he is staying in the race because Hillary “could soon be out.”
“Her money is going to dry up,” Edwards confided, a top source said Monday morning.
Key players in Clinton’s inner circle are said to be split. James Carville is urging her to fight it out through at least February and Super Tuesday, where she has a shot at thwarting Barack Obama in a big state.
“She did not work this hard to get out after one state! All this talk is nonsense,” said one top adviser.
But others close to the former first lady now see no possible road to victory, sources claim.
On the positive side, however, Clinton’s still ahead of Obama nationally. She’s raking in 33% of likely Democratic voters, while Obama’s got 29%. Sure, it’s a small, absolutely meaningless lead, but Clinton should savor those four points. They may be her last.