At a moment when race is the hot topic of discussion in the Democratic primary, an endorsement by the Hispanic governor of New Mexico has to be a huge boon for Obama. We’ve long thought that Richardson would actually be a great running mate for the Illinois senator — it would kill two birds with one stone. Richardson has oodles of experience — he’s been a congressman, governor, and Cabinet member. Plus, his presence on a ticket would help Obama greatly with Hispanic voters, a group he hasn’t fared strongly with in the primaries and one which holds great sway in big states like California and Texas. This is timed perfectly, just as Obama is fending off accusations of racial insensitivity. He said yesterday on a radio interview in Philadelphia that a “typical white person” like his grandmother might be afraid of a person she doesn’t know on the street based on “a reaction that’s been bred into our experience.” This was attacked by some bloggers as scandalous, implying that Obama thinks white people are typically afraid of black people. Some columnists, like Errol Louis, have eloquently dismissed these accusations, but they were sure to linger until the Richardson story took over. We wonder how quickly Hillary Clinton’s cackles about the race snafu turned into tears when Richardson, who was appointed Energy secretary by her own husband, went to the other team.
“This election was lost by the Democrats,” he says.