Or, Why I Would Rather See Obama Win the Democratic Nomination. First off, this is not a post about energy policy. Nor is it an endorsement of anyone. I am not overly inspired by the energy policy of any of the candidates in either party. I think there was one candidate who had a pretty good grasp of energy issues, but that candidate – Bill Richardson of New Mexico – has dropped out of the race. I think both Obama and McCain have a more realistic view of energy than Hillary does. Hillary, in my opinion, has demagogued on this issue more than the other candidates. I believe her policies would lead to an energy shortage faster than the proposals from Obama or McCain. Obama has his own issues with his push for CTL, but I think that is a more realistic – if not wholly desirable – direction that energy policy will go. McCain and Hillary both have ethanol flip-flops that, while politically understandable, say to me that their principals are based on polls.
But this essay is about something else. I have to admit that I developed an unfavorable impression of Hillary Clinton a long time ago. I don’t believe Hillary is a person of integrity. Her actions lately have just reinforced what I have always thought about her: She is driven by blind ambition and will say or do anything to win. Earlier in the campaign, she cried almost on cue in New Hampshire after some said she didn’t show enough emotion. Me? I would have said “I am who I am.” (You can probably tell why I am not in politics.) Hillary showed them she could cry, and I heard a quote from one woman who said that sealed her vote for Hillary.
I also don’t believe that she can beat McCain in the general election, but I believe Obama can. Do you think the Democrats will unite behind her after the tactics she has employed with Obama? Do you think Republicans will work with her? Furthermore, why is she qualified to be president? How did she get to the position she is in? Was she an inspirational leader? Did she have good political skills? Was she a consensus-builder? No, she benefited from being married to someone with (some of) those skills (but who also had a penchant for philandering and then perjuring himself – yes, let’s subject the country to more of that; We all look forward to having to censor the evening news from young children once more as I did during the Clinton-Lewinsky fiasco). The position Hillary is in reminds of the wife/brother/son of some senator who has died, and then they step into the void and benefit from name recognition. Many voters, it seems, are idiots.
My major beef with Hillary is her actions over the Michigan and Florida delegates. In case you are unaware, these two states moved their primaries up to gain more influence in the election, and in order to prevent an escalating war of states constantly moving their primary dates, the Democratic Party stripped those states of their delegates (after warning them not to move their primaries). All of the candidates agreed to abide by this decision. This was Hillary Clinton back in October, when asked why she was keeping her name on the Michigan ballot: “Well, you know, It’s clear, this election they’re having is not going to count for anything.”
Right, until Mrs. “I will say or do anything to win” started to need more delegates. I have to tell you that I do not want this woman to lead our country with these ethics. The Clinton campaign, in their desperation to win and not caring how badly this disenfranchises voters, is now trying to change the rules. I think it’s called “cheating.” And her top advisor? What a hypocrite:
WASHINGTON—Harold Ickes, a top adviser to Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton’s campaign who voted for Democratic Party rules that stripped Michigan and Florida of their delegates, now is arguing against the very penalty he helped pass.
Ickes explained that his different position essentially is due to the different hats he wears as both a DNC member and a Clinton adviser in charge of delegate counting. Clinton won the primary vote in Michigan and Florida, and now she wants those votes to count.
I find that revolting. Agree to abide by the rules, but then if you find yourself in a tight spot, try to get the rules changed after the game has been played:
In response, the Obama campaign said Ickes’ viewpoint runs counter to democratic principles.
“The Clinton campaign just said they have two options for trying to win the nomination — attempt to have superdelegates overturn the will of the Democratic voters or change the rules they agreed to at the 11th hour in order to seat nonexistent delegates from Florida and Michigan,” said Obama campaign manager David Plouffe. “The Clinton campaign should focus on winning pledged delegates as a result of elections, not these say-or-do-anything-to-win tactics that could undermine Democrats’ ability to win the general election.”
The media has not been kind to Clinton over this, and rightfully so:
The campaign entered a nasty phase last week with the determination of Clinton’s team to revive delegates from the “ghost” primaries of Michigan and Florida, by legal action if necessary.
The two states broke party rules by bringing forward their contests to January and were stripped of their delegates by the Democratic National Committee. The candidates did not formally compete in either state but Clinton won both handsomely.
“Two million people voted and their votes are going to count,” said Doug Hattaway, a Clinton spokesman.
They were not ruling out legal action. Even some Clinton supporters are aghast at the prospect that she might try to “steal” the election in this way. Obama leads by 1,301 delegates to 1,235, according to RealClearPolitics.
That’s right, Hillary. File a lawsuit to overturn rules that were agreed to by overyone, and resulted in the other candidates not even being on the ballot. Has this campaign no shame?
The current delegate count shows Clinton and Barack Obama in a relative dead heat, with Obama slightly ahead. But what the Clinton campaign hopes will happen is that delegates from Florida and Michigan – two states she won but whose delegates are not counted because these states moved up their primary dates without the blessing of the DNC – will actually get seated.
The Clinton campaign feels that if they hold on throughout the primaries until the convention, odds are that the Democratic Party will choose to seat the Florida and Michigan delegates.
“We are the party that constantly fights voter disenfranchisement. We are also the party that is hungry for a win and we understand how important these two states are in the general election,” the Clinton campaign source said.
“An empty Florida and Michigan section at the convention would hurt our chances in the general election,” the source added.
And the Clinton source argues if that happens, and Obama is the nominee, “it would be pretty devastating to his chances in the general election without Florida and Michigan.”
Give me a break. Hillary trying to take the high ground over voter disenfranchisement? Is there any doubt that if the shoe were on the other foot, she would argue not to seat the delegates? I don’t want a president whose opinion shifts based on what is personally most beneficial. And the comment about Obama’s chance in the general election? Again, give me a break. Whole new election, Obama versus McCain. He will be walking in with a fresh slate, and I know he has a lot of support in Michigan, where even though Hillary was the only candidate on the ballot, a very large percentage voted “uncommitted”, and polls show that Obama would have won Michigan had he been on the ballot.
If she didn’t suffer from so much blind ambition, she would do what is best for the party and bow out of the race. (If she gets beaten in Wisconsin, Texas, and Ohio the pressure for her to step down before the convention will be intense.) The only way she is going to win the nomination at this point is by resorting to sleazy tactics, and enough voters thoroughly dislike her that I don’t believe she can possibly beat McCain in the general election (especially after months of reporting on her sleazy tactics against Obama). And if the party goes ahead and installs her as the nominee, it will be justice to see her go down to defeat against McCain. But it will have been a horribly raw deal for Obama, and it will cause some very deep national wounds.
Now, back to your regularly scheduled programming.