In the frenzied lead up to Super Tuesday this week, The Los Angeles Times has stepped into the fray by endorsing Barack Obama for the Democrats and John McCain for the Republicans. The state of California, with its multitude of delegates, is the glittering jewel in the Super Tuesday crown, so the endorsement for both candidates will be a welcome one. But in justifying their choice of Obama, the paper wrote this flowery line — “In the language of metaphor, Clinton is an essay, solid and reasoned; Obama is a poem, lyric and filled with possibility.” Political blog Wonkette laments “Why must Obama people always resort to ‘the language of metaphor’ to explain why they like this guy?” And more importantly, since when did we describe grown men as ‘poems’?

Hillary’s Hispanics: The importance of the Hispanic vote on February 5 can’t be overstated. Of the 22 states holding primaries or caucuses that day, there are seven in which Latinos make up more than 10 percent of the population. In 2006, they accounted for 19 percent of the vote in California, 10 percent in Illinois, 9 percent in New Jersey, and 7 percent in New York—the four biggest prizes in terms of delegates on Tuesday. As Simon Rosenberg, the head of the progressive advocacy group NDN, puts it, “Never before in American history have Hispanics had so much influence in picking a presidential nominee.” — John Heilemann, New York Magazine

The young unite: Try to imagine that you were still in elementary school when George W. Bush took office, and you’ll get a sense of how eager these first-time voters are for a leader to call their own. They know global warming and international fallout from the Iraq war will affect their generation more than anyone else voting in this election. And the issues that affect them the most right now, such as college affordability, have been ignored by Washington for as long as they can remember. — Katharine Mieszkowski, Salon

The shallowness of Super Tuesday: Now that the long-anticipated “Tsunami Tuesday” is almost upon us, the full folly of choosing presidential candidates in what amounts to a national primary has become apparent to everyone. Voters in 24 states, spanning the continent and ranging in size from California and New York down to Delaware and North Dakota, will cast ballots. They may well settle the Republican nomination and go a long way toward resolving the identity of the Democratic candidate. Few of those voters will have had more than a quick glimpse of the candidates, who have had little time to devote to the entire country since the last single-state contests in South Carolina and Florida. — David Broder, RealClearPolitics

Courting the Republican vote: If one great communicator — the eloquent Ronald Reagan — could build a coalition of disaffected Democrats that swung both of his presidential elections his way, can an almost-great communicator — the fiery Barack Obama — build a coalition of disaffected Republicans to swing the Democrat primary election his way? — Saleno Zito, Townhall

Lieberman on why to vote for McCain: From the moment the next president steps into the Oval Office, he or she will face life-and-death decisions in this war. That is why we need a president who is going to be ready to be commander-in-chief from day one – a president who won’t need on-the-job training. And that is why I have decided to cross party lines to endorse Sen. John McCain for president. — Joe Lieberman, The New York Post

Obama the poem: The Los Angeles Times endorsed Barack Obama for the Democratic nomination today, as well as John “The Liberal Who Proudly Wants To Occupy Iraq Permanently” McCain for the Republicans.It gets worse: “In the language of metaphor, Clinton is an essay, solid and reasoned; Obama is a poem, lyric and filled with possibility.” Why must Obama people always resort to “the language of metaphor” to explain why they like this guy? Can’t he be an “essay” too? The media could help Barack win over some of Clinton’s wonkier supporters if they bothered endorsing some of his “policies,” rather than indulging their own fascination with his pretty skin and the places he’s seen. Besides: since when do we describe 46-year-old men as “poems”?Wonkette

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey