I’m fairly sure that when primary postmortems are held that simple phrase, “Top Down, Bottom Up,” will summarize the difference between the Clinton and Obama campaigns. There is considerable anecdotal evidence that, here in Arizona at least, the Clinton campaign passed over some canny local pols, preferring out-of-state organizers.
Whether that was true and whether, or to what degree, that was the case at the national level will have to wait for scholarly analysis.
Another expression, “That was then, this is now,” pretty neatly summarizes another mistake by Clinton campaign strategists: The nature of political action and political organizing has really changed since 1993. It’s not perfectly clear to me that the campaign understood the power of Web 2.0, and the nature of bottom up campaigning that makes possible.
The Obama campaign clearly did---not too amazing in a campaign run by and for a seasoned community organizer.