Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Party de-unifier


Most people held their tongues when Hillary Clinton continued her campaigning through the end of the Democratic primary season, even though it was clear at least since the North Carolina primary that her campaign was dead in the water. But her initial actions after the close of the primary season Tuesday proved, once again, that Hillary is all about Hillary, not unifying the party for the November election against presumptive Republican nominee John McCain, despite her claims to the contrary. While Barack Obama has been unfailingly gracious and congratulatory when talking of Mrs. Clinton's historic run for the nomination, Mrs. Clinton has done everything possible to damage his candidacy, even after it was clear that she was destined to finish second. Her speech to supporters Tuesday night was the perfect opportunity for her to 1) end her campaign 2) congratulate Barack Obama on clinching the Democratic nomination and 3) to pledge her full support to getting him elected in November. But, no. Mrs. Clinton said she would be "making no decisions tonight." News bulletin to you, Mrs. Clinton: The decision has been made, by the voters in your party's primaries and caucuses. You, Mrs. Clinton, took a candidacy that once stood far above all others in the Democratic race and drove it straight into the ground. The ultimate blame for your loss rests with you and your husband. You both resorted to attempts to create a racial divide among voters and then claimed that your own candidacy was victimized by some vast conspiracy of sexism. Get over it. People just didn't like you enough. They chose the other guy. Even President Bush congratulated Obama on his nomination. Yet Tuesday night, you still were talking as if your "coalition" of voters in "battleground states" represented the only viable path toward the 270 electoral votes needed to claim victory in November. In other words, Obama can't win. And now, when it's clear you have been abandoned not only by the voters but by Democratic party leaders (superdelegates) who once broadly supported you, you want Obama to choose you (and Bill) as his running mate. After all that has transpired, why would he want you to cover his back? He'd better watch out for the figurative knives if he takes that route, and invest in another campaign plane just to carry the Clintons' "baggage." When the Bush administration was trying to defend the post-invasion mess in Iraq, Vice President Dick Cheney and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld tried to blame the persistent attacks on American troops on small groups of "dead-enders," those who fought on with no hope of victory. That was a lie when it pertained to Iraq, but it might be the truth when the term is applied to the Clinton campaign. There are a lot of people in the Democratic Party, those outside the core supporters, who are fuming about Mrs. Clinton's actions over the past few weeks and her refusal to step aside. They might well be thinking of some variant of what attorney Joseph Welch said to Sen. Joe McCarthy in the famous 1954 McCarthy hearings: "You've done enough. Have you no sense of decency ... at long last? Have you left no sense of decency?"

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15 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sexism is far down the list of things that undid the Hillary campaign -- so far down, in fact, that I don't think it merits serious consideration.

I think the Hillary braintrust misread the mood of the country and, more specifically, the mood of Democratic electorate. Another Clinton administration, while being a vast improvement on the current crowd, would've promised more splitting-the-difference triangulation, while Obama is promising something fresher and bolder (it would also offer a break from the baby boomers' never-ending culture war skirmishes). The dynastic aspect of another Clinton presidency, especially following Bush II, also gave people some pause.

The Clinton folks also made some grave tactical errors. The worst was not having a plan after Super Tuesday and not boning up on the caucuses. They poured too much $$ into Super Tuesday and then had empty coffers afterward.

--Brad Hundt

June 4, 2008 at 3:54 PM  
Blogger PRIguy said...

Clinton and her husband destroyed her campaign. While I hate her, him and Obama, at least Obama conducted himself with some dignity.

Clinton's action show quite clearly that she won't rest until she's in the White House through whatever means it takes to get there...and we all know that the Clinton family is devious, evil and power hungry. In a way, I kind of hope Obama chooses her as his VP. It will ensure his loss.

June 4, 2008 at 5:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Given the choice between Clinton and Obama, many in OH, PA, KY and WV chose Clinton. That's what primaries allow. However, when the choice is between Obama and McCain, I can't believe that enough Clinton supporters will be spiteful and juvenile enough to vote for McCain or just stay home. If they do, they might as well change the Constitution and let Bush stay put.

June 4, 2008 at 6:06 PM  
Blogger Ellipses said...

Well jeez... that's not fair... a choice is a choice... you know, if you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice.

-Ellipses

June 4, 2008 at 6:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not choosing is NOT a choice -- it's a delaying tactic. I just don't want to endure four years of McCain as president PLUS the whining of Hillary supporters who either didn't vote or voted for McCain but can't stand the consequences.

June 4, 2008 at 9:44 PM  
Blogger Ellipses said...

Oh come on... McCain is a good guy. A McCain presidency would be a good presidency. So would an Obama presidency for that matter... We, as Americans, have two wonderful choices for President.

-Ellipses

June 4, 2008 at 9:51 PM  
Blogger Scott Beveridge said...

You have such a talent for finding photos that make politicians look like idiots or full of gas.....

June 5, 2008 at 12:35 PM  
Blogger Brant said...

Maybe because a lot of them are. ;)

June 5, 2008 at 2:16 PM  
Blogger Roger said...

E... said:

We, as Americans, have two wonderful choices for President.

You have been smoking too many joints, drinking too much alcohol, or used some other mind-altering drug to come to this conclusion.

June 7, 2008 at 10:30 PM  
Blogger Ellipses said...

Please elaborate on why you believe that either John McCain or Barack Obama is not the upstanding, decent human being that I believe them to be.

-Ellipses

June 8, 2008 at 6:20 AM  
Blogger Ellipses said...

They have been showing a lot of "glory days" pics of Hilary from the early to mid-90's... she was kinda cute.

-Ellipses

June 9, 2008 at 7:22 PM  
Blogger Brant said...

Two words: Steinway piano

June 13, 2008 at 10:24 AM  
Blogger Ellipses said...

I don't know what that means :-(

-E

June 13, 2008 at 10:47 AM  
Blogger Brant said...

That means Hill has legs like a Steinway, complete with kankles. There's a good reason for the pantsuits. ;)

June 13, 2008 at 10:52 AM  
Blogger Ellipses said...

That is quite amusing then...

-Ellipses

June 13, 2008 at 11:07 AM  

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