Archive for the ‘Clinton’ category

Donna Brazile rules

June 18, 2008

At the recent meeting of the DNC Rules Committee one of my favorite moments was when committee member Donna Brazile laid down the law to a representative of the Clinton campaign from Michigan.  She was speaking to the issue of whether the Michigan delegation should be seated at the national convention in Denver even though the state Democratic party had broken the rules by holding their primary too early.  You can find discussion of this moment at the DNC meeting on Daily Kos at the following link — there originally was a YouTube video but that no longer works.

She began by wishing the Clintonite’s mother a happy birthday and then went on to comment about what her own mother had taught her:

“My Momma always taught me to play by the rules.  And if you try to change the rules, it’s called cheatin'” (more…)


Who should Obama pick?

June 4, 2008

Today all the cable TV talking heads are obsessed with the wrong questions “What does Hillary want?” and “Should Obama choose Hillary for VP?” Those are the wrong questions.

The real focus should be on what Barack Obama wants in the person who will be his first “hire” — his vice-presidential pick. There should be no rush to judgment here. There should be no pressure from the Clintonites that she be picked.

Let Obama employ the same quality decision-making he displayed in running his primary campaign. The team he picked to run his campaign (Axelrod and Ploufe) have performed brilliantly and have gotten Obama to this moment: today he stands as the presumptive nominee of the Democratic Party for President of the United States. (more…)

Dear Hillary, don’t be like Tonya Harding

May 26, 2008

We have never met but I hope you won’t mind my addressing you by your first name. But it seems natural to address you as Hillary because that is the way it is on so many campaign signs.

Let me introduce myself: 60-something, college-degreed professional woman who came of age, like yourself, in the turbulent 60’s.

So, let’s have a little woman-to-woman talk … but, first, take off those pointy-toe high heels that are so hard on the feet … sit down in a comfy chair with your feet up … take a deep calming breath like they teach in yoga class: breathe in deeply, hold it for a count of ten, then release it all in one cleansing whoosh. Get yourself a cup of tea and sip it slowly — green tea would be good because of all those anti-oxidants and we can’t have too many of those, especially as we get older. But chamomile or peppermint would work, too. There, doesn’t that feel better?

The reason for writing this letter is to lay out what I see as your future in the Democratic party. Yes, I know you really, really, REALLY want to be President of the United States. You have made that abundantly clear to all of us. But things are not quite working out the way you expected – the nomination was not wrapped up on Super Duper Tuesday and since then everything has not exactly gone your way. The other candidate is winning in states won, pledged delegates, and super delegates. These are the metrics that matter according to the Democratic party rules. No one knows this better than Harold Ickes, the senior advisor to your campaign who helped draft those rules. Under these rules, you will not be the nominee of the Democratic party in 2008. Sorry, but that’s the way it is – you can’t change the rules in the fourth quarter of a football game just because you think a different sent of rules would allow you to win. That isn’t the way the world works, either in sports or in politics. (more…)

Countdown to Iowa (or why the polls are wrong)

December 29, 2007

Most of what has been written about the upcoming Jan. 3 Iowa caucuses is probably wrong. Polls have been done that purport to “prove” what caucus-goers will do. But a look back at 2004 is instructive since the conventional wisdom predictions then were totally off-base.

I came across a Newsweek analysis of the Democratic field that came out a week before the 2004 Iowa caucuses. Boy, did they get it wrong! Let’s take a trip down Memory Lane and see what they said then — and what actually happened. (more…)

Playing the gender card

November 4, 2007

Hillary Clinton has built her campaign on the premise that she is tough-as-nails and can go toe to toe with all comers, whether they be foreign heads of state, other candidates for the Democratic presidential nomination, or right-wing political hacks.

One image that comes to mind with this assertion is a kind of roller derby with elbows flying and no holds barred.

Or maybe not so much.

During this week’s Democratic presidential debate, Hillary was targeted by her opponents with some criticism of her votes and her views. At one point John Edwards commented that he had heard Hillary say two contradictory things within the space of two minutes — a legitimate point to be pounced on by an adroit opposing candidate. Other candidates lobbed verbal attacks which appeared to be normal political discourse to those watching the interchanges.

But the next day, Hillary hid behind a metaphorical skirt, albeit her own. Hillary’s campaign staffers let everyone know that they felt that the debate was simply a case of all the boys piling on a girl. They pulled the gender card and called “foul”. It was not “nice” for all those boys to pick on the only girl.

This is playground stuff. It contradicts the image that Hillary has so carefully projected of a strong, competent leader who happens to be a woman. She always appears at these debates wearing a tailored pantsuit, never a skirt. Her concession to femininity in her attire is the choice of fabric and color, not the cut of her clothes.

My feminist core is outraged by Hillary’s campaign playing the gender card.

She can’t have it both ways. Either she is a strong, tough professional — or she is not.

Hiding behind a skirt is not an option if she wants to be sit behind the desk in the Oval Office.

Followership from Barack and Hillary

October 24, 2007

Me too! Me too! seems the be the message from the Clinton and Obama campaigns in response to Chris Dodd’s principled stand on FISA — Dodd stepped up to the plate right out of the gate to oppose the FISA compromise (read:  giveaway to the telecoms).   Plus there were immediate statements from Wyden, Feingold and Biden.  Now we have two more presidential candidates deciding that they had better get on board because Chris Dodd is getting favorable press on this.  This is not spine.  This is not leadership.  This is just a rush to not look bad on this issue from people who say they want to be the leader/president of this country.

Look at the statements from the Clinton and Obama campaigns below.  Notice that Hillary gives herself plenty of wiggle room to change her position and support the bill if she gets “additional information”.   Pretty lame, if you ask me.

Chris Dodd may be trailing Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama in the polls, but he’s leading them when it comes to standing up against retroactive immunity for telecommunications companies.

When members of the Senate Intelligence Committee cut a deal with the Bush administration and approved retroactive immunity for telecommunications companies that helped the government spy on their customers, Dodd said pretty immediately that he’d put a hold on the bill, then said subsequently that he’d filibuster the bill if the Senate votes to overcome his hold.

That was last week. On Tuesday, in what appears to be a response to a push from MoveOn and others, Barack Obama’s campaign put out a statement saying that if the bill containing immunity for the telecom companies comes to the floor in its present form, Obama “would support a filibuster of it.”

Shortly thereafter, Clinton told reporters on a conference call that while she hasn’t seen the legislation yet, “as matters stand now, I could not support it and I would support a filibuster absent additional information coming forth that would convince me differently.”

Followership, not leadership is what we are seeing from these two supposedly top-tier presidential candidates.  Not much spine but perhaps some cartilage forming.