Yes, Hillary Clinton was publicly pulling for Eight Belles, the filly who finished second in the Kentucky Derby, but then broke both front ankles and was euthanized on the track, in front of a national TV audience.
And yes, Clinton is very likely to finish runner-up to Barack Obama for the Democratic nomination.
But an editorial Thursday in Obama's hometown paper, the Chicago Tribune, that compared to Clinton to the race horse and the Democratic nomination race to the derby was too much for the Tribune's public editor, who represents readers.
Timothy J. McNulty writes today that several readers complained and that, "Notwithstanding the playful, even clever, writing of the editorial, it was wrong."
McNulty said he was made queasy by the imagery of the editorial's closing sentence: "There's no reason to wait until August to put Clinton, and the rest of us, out of our misery."
The Tribune's editorial page editor told McNulty, "We want to write editorials that are provocative. This one went right to the edge. I understand that some readers thought the analogy was insulting to Clinton. That wasn't the intent."
About Political Intelligence
Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.