Darrell Huckaby - The beat goes on in Democratic race

Remember Sonny and Cher? Sure you do. Where are they when you need them? They should be providing the background music for the seemingly never-ending series of Democratic primaries that has kept us entertained, agitated and scared to death throughout the winter and spring. Yes, the beat does go on - and on and on and on and on. And if you believe Hillary, the end is still not in sight - not if the June 3 primaries end without Barack having enough pledged delegates to claim the nomination outright.

West Virginia weighed in this week and they voted overwhelming in favor of the senator from New York.

Now there are all kind of jokes that could be made here, but you've heard them all, and besides, some of my favorite folks are from west Virginia and I like the state - even if most family trees don't have an awful lot of branches up that way.

So Hillary, who now trails in popular vote, states won, pledged delegates, super delegates, debt, frequent flier miles and racially offensive T-shirt sales is having to put on a happy face and pretend that she can resurrect her candidacy in Kentucky.

The last filly that ran there was euthanized afterward, so she had better watch her step - speaking figuratively, of course.

It has been fun, though, this campaign season. And it always amuses me to watch the stiff, upper crust, pampered individuals - who are about the only people who can afford to run for public office these days - try to blend in with the regular crowd. Admittedly, this year's shenanigans haven't been as absurd as 2004 when John Kerry took his Botox-and-spray-tan show on the road, but there have been moments.

Like the time Barack Obama went bowling. Just one of the guys, you know. Just like Fred Flintstone and Barney Rubble - or Ralph Kramden and Ed Norton; "gonna go down to the alley and roll a few with the boys." Just a regular Joe, you know.

Speaking of which, I bet there have been a lot of times over the past few months that Barack wished his parents had named him Joe - or Bill or Charlie, or even Sue. But not as many times as he'll wish it between now and November.

As for the bowling? He should have shot skeet, like John Kerry. He spent more time in the gutter than a Bourbon Street drunk. I think he finished with a 37 - which is still 10 points higher than the percentage of votes he got in West Virginia. That escapade happened five weeks ago and Jay Leno is still talking about it. In fact, Obama's lane antics have gotten about as much monologue time as restroom enthusiast Larry Craig's airport shenanigans. And let me say here that Larry Craig is a Republican - lest I be accused of being anything other than an equal opportunity offender.

I don't know which is worse, though. Barack's bowling or Hillary's drinking. One of her favorite things to do on the campaign trail is to walk into a blue collar bar and order up a round of shots and beer for the house. And then she bends an arm like an old pro, wipes the foam off her mouth and cackles for the camera - and when I say cackle, I mean cackle, because that's what she does.

If Hillary liked beer as much as she pretends, she would cross party lines and ask John McCain to be her running mate because his wife owns a whole beer company.

I think they have a word for what the candidates are doing. It's called pandering. You come to Georgia, you eat boiled peanuts and you pretend that you've done it all your life. You go to Maine and you eat boiled lobster, and pretend you've done it all your life. I'd spend more time in Maine, by the way. I am proud of my native state and I like boiled peanuts, but lobster is a whole lot better.

Lately, both candidates have quit taking pot shots at one another and have begun rivaling the presumptive Republican nominee, John McCain. Barack is taking that tack so that he will look like his party's presumptive candidate. Hillary is probably doing it so that she will look like a potential vice-presidential candidate. She is stubborn and tenacious, but I am giving her the benefit of the doubt and assuming that she can count and knows that even the powerful Clinton machine won't be able to steal the nomination.

I've heard many people say that if Barack Obama chooses Hillary Clinton as his running mate, he'd better make sure his life insurance policy is up to date. Now, I haven't said that, understand - and would never insinuate that Hillary would go to any extreme measures to get back to the White House, but I've heard others say it.

At any rate, the primary season is winding down and I'm sorry to see it, because I know the general election won't be nearly as much fun. But speaking of the general election - would someone please wake John McCain once the Democratic nominee is finally chosen.

Darrell Huckaby is a local author and educator. He can be reached at dHuck08@bellsouth.net.