The growing clamor for Hillary Clinton to exit the primary race grew a bit louder these last few days. A Gallup poll gave Barack Obama a ten-point lead over Clinton, his largest so far this year. Vermont senator Patrick Leahy called on Clinton to quit, shortly after similar remarks by Connecticut senator Chris Dodd (it’s no coincidence that both are die-hard Obama supporters). Minnesota senator Amy Klobuchar is endorsing Obama today, and more superdelegates may soon follow. And in what is probably not a gesture of solidarity with financially strapped Americans, there are also reports that Clinton is having trouble paying her bills. She’s undeterred, however, telling the Washington Post over the weekend that she’s in it to win it, or at least to lose it at the convention in August. Obama, though, has not joined the chorus for her withdrawal — he has invited Clinton to run “as long as she wants.”
• Jackie Calmes reports that a string of superdelegates are falling in behind Obama as they seek to unify the party and avoid a “chaotic convention that plays into the hands of Republicans.” [WSJ]
• Stanley Crouch doesn’t think Clinton will destroy the party, but the panic she’s exhibiting, demonstrated in things like the Bosnia flap, is ruining her own chances of ever becoming president. [NYDN]
• Isaac Chotiner thinks the best example for Clinton is Mike Huckabee, who stayed in the Republican race without hurting McCain or being divisive. And if a major scandal comes along to damage Obama, Clinton can still be around to benefit. [Plank/New Republic]
• Bob Ostertag agrees: Stay in the race, but don’t attack Obama, don’t push for superdelegates to override the popular vote, and just talk about the policies close to your heart. [HuffPo]
• Nora Ephron, a former Clinton supporter, now wants her to drop out of the race, but mainly because Ephron is spending “far too much time” trying to comprehend some of Clinton’s choices. [HuffPo]
• Richard Whalen believes Clinton should quit but won’t because she’s arrogant, controlling, and has an oversize sense of entitlement, among other things. [Maverick Conservative/CQ Politics]
• Chuck Todd & Co. write that even though she’s staying in, Clinton is spending most of her time proving her relevance rather than actually debating Obama on the issues. And her interview with the Washington Post makes them wonder whether some of her supporters are ready to bolt. [First Read/MSNBC]
• Vaughn Ververs senses a feeling of desperation for Clinton, as the long gap between primaries has only served to solidify Obama’s support. [Horserace/CBS News] —Dan Amira
Related: Heilemann on Hillary: Who’ll Stop the Pain?
For a complete and regularly updated guide to presidential candidates Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and John McCain — from First Love to Most Embarrassing Gaffe — read the 2008 Electopedia.