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The Clinton Backlash

Posted on Mar 31, 2008

By E.J. Dionne Jr.

    WASHINGTON—Chill out.

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    More specifically: “We’re going to win this election if we just chill out and let everybody have their say.”

    Thus, Bill Clinton’s advice to Democrats who are gnashing their collective teeth over whether the extended struggle between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama will cause their party to lose an election it once seemed certain to win.

    One person who took Clinton’s advice was Obama, who went out of his way last weekend to defend his opponent’s right to stay in the contest. That was a shrewd move since the Clinton campaign is gifted at turning any effort to push her out into (1) a form of sexism, (2) a fiendish plot against her by Washington “insiders” and (3) a way of raising lots of money online.

    In any event, the argument about ending the race now is miscast. Even a miraculous intervention by Al Gore and John Edwards would do little to settle the matter. St. Al and St. John are powerless as long as Clinton and Obama want to keep their battle alive. Only one thing will end this brawl, and that is the self-interest of one of the candidates.


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    For now, Clinton has a strong argument for continuing. Obama leads in delegates but that advantage is not overwhelming. Clinton still has a chance—a pretty good one, according to an analysis posted by Michael Barone on U.S. News & World Report’s Web site—of emerging from the primaries with a lead in the popular vote, though it seems impossible for her to overtake Obama in the delegate count. Clinton’s campaign song has become “Don’t Stop Thinking About the Next Primary.”

    For the long run, it is neither sexism nor insiderism to say that unless she sweeps the next contest in Pennsylvania and also primaries in other places such as Indiana and North Carolina, the decision to end the race by dropping out will fall upon Clinton.

    But there is a more immediate decision for her to make: As long as she is in the race, how will Clinton choose to win? The Clinton campaign needs to examine not what this fight has done to Obama, but what it is doing to her.

    For all Democrats, the worst thing that has happened since January is the tarnishing of the Clinton brand. Clinton haters: Don’t laugh. The truth is that when this whole thing began, the vast majority of Democrats—including Obama supporters—and a fair number of independents had largely positive views of Bill Clinton’s record and Hillary Clinton’s merits.

    In light of today’s economic crisis, most Americans look back fondly on the rapid and widely shared growth of the 1990s. What neoconservatives see as a “holiday from history” in foreign policy, most Americans see as a time of peace when the United States was respected in the world, and even rather liked. 

    And while Bill Clinton’s triangulation (and his scandal) did damage to the Democratic Party, Obama himself has acknowledged that President Clinton was right to pull the party back from “the excesses of the ‘60s.” Bill Clinton, Obama told me in an interview last fall, “deserves some credit for breaking with some of those dogmas in the Democratic Party.”

    As for Hillary Clinton, nobody doubts her intelligence. Those who know her reject the media-built image of Clinton as a cold, calculating machine. Such a person would not inspire the loyalty she has earned from her partisans. If Obama does win, he will draw on her policies, some of which are better crafted than his own.

    Yet much of this has been lost. Bill Clinton’s approach to the South Carolina primary, the Clinton campaign’s effort to ignore everything it once said about the irrelevance of the Florida and Michigan primaries, Hillary Clinton’s willingness to say (or imply) that John McCain is more prepared to be president than Obama—all this and more has created a ferocious backlash against the Clintons. The result is that when the word Clinton crosses their lips, many Democrats sound like Ken Starr, Bob Barr and the late Henry Hyde.

    “Chill out” is good advice. Hillary Clinton has every right to keep fighting. But her campaign has suffered from a ricochet effect. Attacks aimed at her opponent and efforts to exaggerate her experience have weakened rather than strengthened her claim to the nomination.

    This is obviously a problem for Hillary Clinton herself, but it is also very bad for a Democratic Party that cannot afford to see the entire Clinton legacy discredited.
    E.J. Dionne’s e-mail address is postchat(at)
  © 2008, Washington Post Writers Group

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By bert, April 1, 2008 at 7:39 pm Link to this comment

lib - Be sure to also tell them that delagtes are free to vote for anyone they want at the convention even if they pledged for some one else. It is in the rules.

If they get a hassel have them contact someone at Hillary’s campaign.

Like superdeldates every delegate can vote for the candidate they think best.

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By bert, April 1, 2008 at 7:28 pm Link to this comment

I see yoy rely on the same excellent source I do, Fact Check.irg. Great minds and all that.  smile

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By DennisD, April 1, 2008 at 6:53 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“None of the Above” gets my vote. The real candidates of “change” are long gone.

We’ve got the classic garbage in, garbage out corporate driven “reality” political system. Scripted from start to finish.

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By cyrena, April 1, 2008 at 6:49 pm Link to this comment

I would only add to what has already been voiced in response to this:

“I started noticing on the web, that most bloggers were of the “anybody but Hillary” model.”..

This was NOT the ‘blog mentality’ at the beginning of these campaigns, or even when Hillary first made her “intentions known” to run for the office. (I say that with cheek in tongue, because most of us who’ve been around for 4 plus decades already knew this long ago).

Still, my point. There was NOT the ‘anybody but Hillary’ mentality present, other than from those who have hated her for decades, and will never feel any other way. That is NOT, (and never was) the majority of anybody.

Meantime, months have passed, and it is a result of Hillary’s negative campaign, and the incredible ignorance of some of her supporters, that has created this mentality of ‘anybody but Hillary’.

So, that’s human nature, and it’s the way that societies react, and it’s something that a far more ‘intuned’ politician or political advice committee should understand.

It’s whacked her, and that’s not to say that she doesn’t have strengths or abilities for the job.

I should also add that the Obama campaign has NOT ‘thrown’ Hillary Clinton under the bus. Hillary has buried herself by shit that has ‘blownback’ in her face.

And yeah, that’s sad.

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By lib in texas, April 1, 2008 at 4:46 pm Link to this comment

Black men were able to vote in ten states in 1868.
Women weren’t allowed to vote until August of 1920!!!!


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By lib in texas, April 1, 2008 at 4:41 pm Link to this comment

Well thats just fine that you don’t think Wrights sermons were offensive.  BUT I DO!!!!  I’m not the
only one.
I am NOT a racist !  My ancestors never owned slaves and fought in the civil war to free the slaves.  I’ve never done ANYTHING to a black person and yes I have seen the Tuskeegee Airman movie probably a dozen times and it makes me proud of those black heros everytime.  Also the black Navy ship who saved thousands of lives leading ships through dangerous waters during a horrible storm.  They were only honored last year and only a handfull still alive.  I was equally proud of them, however Wright in my eyes is as close to the devil himself.  He does no one any favors by his hateful rantings. 
Mentioning HUD the Head JUST resigned because of an investigation mostly re Katrina.  A Blackman not doing right by the Blacks in New Orleans.  Not my fault either but not happy about it so please don’t color all Whites the same color.

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By cyrena, April 1, 2008 at 3:48 pm Link to this comment

Joe in Maine,

It’s unfortunate, (and sad of course) that you somehow feel that supporters of Hillary Clinton will somehow be ‘dumped’ by the portion of the Democrat party that has supported Barack Obama, (not to mention those from other ‘parties’ who have supported him as well).

It’s sad because that is the antithesis to his entire platform of UNIFYING American citizens to create a larger movement of the MAJORITY of US, to act in concert to benefit..THE MAJORITY of US, who have been so tossed aside by this minority Cabal of neo-conning gangsters.

So, your cynicism is a drag on that. Your failure to recognize the difference between ‘inclusive’ and ‘exclusive’ is hurting you, as it hurts the whole.

OF COURSE the Obama campaign has ‘needed’ all of us, and not just a few. The fact that he is now in the lead in the contest doesn’t mean that he doesn’t, or hasn’t. But, your mentality in thinking such, does not help. Rather, it’s just sad.

At the end of the day, there can be no ‘success’ for you (individually) or the Democrats, (as a party) or the people of the US, unless we can come to some sort of UNITED support.

Barack Obama knows that perfectly well, and the suggestion that anyone would now be ‘grandmothered out’, or otherwise tossed aside, is only your cynical perception, and that can or will only happen if YOU CHOOSE it.

Obviously, many will. But don’t mistake that for being intentionally disenfrancised. Everyone is being offered a seat at the table in a hopeful Obama administration. If you choose not to COME to the table, or otherwise take the seat that’s reserved for you, THAT IS ON YOU!!

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By cyrena, April 1, 2008 at 3:34 pm Link to this comment

Dear wordsonfire,

Thanks for the excellent and illuminating post. As a woman of color with white ancestors and family members, I can very much relate to your experiences as they are the experiences of all of us. I also am not surprised by your husband’s surprise at your fear of being an organ donor, until he could relate it to what he sees in the emergency room.

What you’ve ‘hit’ on here, is the thing that we’ve now been trying to get across in the weeks and even months since this whole thing began with actually, Barack Obama’s candidacy. The issue of Jeremiah Wright’s sermon’s and his place as a cleric/minister in the African-American communities did not come to anyone’s notice until that time. As you know, portions of the ‘snippets’ of his sermons, taken out of context, date back to six years ago, if not longer. He’s been a clerical member of the community for 30 years.

At any rate, I said that to say that while you have made a clear point here, in reference to those who have only negative slime to first CREATE, and the USE to demonize the ‘competition’ so to speak, in a typical political contest, rather than any positive assets of their own candidate, this is not new. It’s been on going for weeks and months, and your illumination of the realities by way of presenting some historical truths, will continue to fall on the SAME deaf ears. That much at least, we have all witnessed, on this very same blog. I could even put together an instantaneous ‘list’ just from memory, on those who continue to post the same ignorance to what you’ve witnessed and responded to. THEY will never ‘get it’ and that’s the saddest truth of all.

HOWEVER, that is NOT to say that just as many more people of the dominant American culture (white people) either DO already understand and comprehend these realities, your husband, have and will come to comprehend them, and they will continue to do so.

That said, your contributions are helpful, and they are educational, and they do serve a greater purpose.

So, please keep up the education, for those who are open to receiving it.

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By wordsonfire, April 1, 2008 at 2:48 pm Link to this comment

You can’t support your candidate without calling others names.

You clearly don’t know many black people well do you?  Or, if you do, they don’t talk to you with any sort of authenticity or transparency about their experiences, thoughts, views of life in America.  Must be deeply insightful conversations you’re having!

I keep trying to write just the right pithy response to this sad post . . . but, instead it just makes me sad. sad. sad. 

Okay . . . if you are interested, nothing Wright said was either Racist or Anti-American . . .  But, for you to understand that, you’d need to know something about race as a construct in our culture.

And, most of the footage was available for viewing a year ago . . . many of the excerpts you’ve been seeing are decades old, not weeks old.

I recommend a few pieces of modern culture that may help your window onto the world of people of color.

1.  Watch the Airmen of Tuskeegee which is an HBO Film.  This film does a good job capturing overall what it’s like to be a black man in the 1940s trying to serve your country.  (That’s still in our lifetimes people) and it is the experience of men like Jeramiah Wright . .

2.  Learn about the syphillis experiments at Tuskeegee (no relation to number one above) . . . ask yourself . . .is it a stretch that someone wouldn’t believe the best of the white medical establishment?  Hey as a woman of color, my white husband was shocked that I am fearful about being an organ donor,  But, then he’s seen the difference in our treatment in an emergency room and he now calls my fear sensible and not paranoid.  You get treated like piece of dirt trying to scam the establishment, when in fact,  when you are a senior executive and leader of your community, who has just suffered a major accident . . .It makes you a little nutty after a while!

3.  Read William F. Buckley, dear recently departed conservative known for his “civility.”  Read his arguments to continue segregation in this country.  And then read his polite and enthusiastic eulogies in any major newspaper . . . The things he had to say about people of color, that he never retracted . . . but he’s an A-O-Kay gentlemen’s gentlemen.

4.  Track down the late 1980s article that appeared in the Rolling Stone on the World Health Organization use of Rheusus Monkey for Polio vaccinations in Africa and not the US . . . there was a time in the 80s when a number of investigative journalists were tracking down the cause of HIV and weren’t so certain that it wasn’t in the vaccines that werent’ in use in the wesern industrialized world, but were being used in Africa.

5.  go back and re-read coverage in the 1980s about the Iran-Contra scandal . . . actually follow where the drugs the contras where selling ended up.

6.  What Geraldine Ferraro had to say was so incredibly disgusting and galling I ran around the hosue for days kvetching about her (because I’m not only black . . .I’m jewish too!)

Repeatedly people, including Dionne, called Wright “unhinged” without any deeper engagement/reflection with the issues he raised . . . and it sure stirred up the pot good, I mean that big, scary, black Marine actually bringing up the actual ills visited upon his community by the white community . . .

Don’t even get me started on HUD and urban land use in the 50s through 70s.

I’ve read the 1st amendment . . .it doesn’t say the only speech that’s allowable is that which is flattering and nice about the country and white people . . .

So, you have your first amendment rights just like I do . . . would that you would use your rights to move the conversation along, instead of calling names and whipping up fear.

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By lib in texas, April 1, 2008 at 2:41 pm Link to this comment

You mention change of thinking Mi and Fla weren’t
necessary.  Well they are now very relevant because no one has a clear win.  The Democratic party has f**ked up badly.  Their primary rules, regs, whatever, have to be changed and I know it is to late now, BUT I believe it will cause a Dem loss in
Nov.  John Dean needs to resign maybe right NOW!!!
Our presidential candidates have been screwed and has Obama and Hillary endorsers bitter enemies.
This election cycle seems to me to be more bitter than the last one even with the repugs and their absolute hate towards anything RIGHT!!!!

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By lib in texas, April 1, 2008 at 2:20 pm Link to this comment

Again I read in paper where Oklahomians are regretting their vote for Obama and want delegates to change to Hillary.
I have cousins in Iowa e-mailing me they have changed their minds also and want delegates to not vote for Obama.
Believe Me I emailed back thanking them for finally coming to their senses.

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By lib in texas, April 1, 2008 at 2:09 pm Link to this comment

Substance Abuse
April 1, 2008
A widely forwarded e-mail claims that Obama’s bills are more substantive and numerous than Clinton’s. Don’t believe it.
A misleading e-mail has been making the rounds, alleging that Clinton has fewer legislative accomplishments than Obama, and that they are less substantive. We’ve had questions about it from a number of readers, and blogs have jumped into the fray. So what’s the real story on the Senate careers of the Democratic presidential candidates?

We find that the e-mail is false in almost every particular:

It sets up a face-off between apples and, well, broccoli, comparing only the Clinton-sponsored bills that became law with all bills sponsored or cosponsored by Obama, whether they were signed into law or not.

It includes legislation Obama sponsored in the Illinois state Senate, a very different legislative body.

It tells us that Obama has sponsored more legislation than Clinton, when in fact he has sponsored less.

It implies that Obama has passed more bills into law than Clinton, when the opposite is true.
Contrary to the e-mail’s assertions, Clinton’s and Obama’s contributions are not qualitatively different, and quantitatively, Clinton has the edge.

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By Conservative Yankee, April 1, 2008 at 1:54 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Maybe you are right about Obama, BUT you are wrong about Bubba and the Business Shill.

During her eight years on the Walmart board she did nothing for that company’s beleaguered workers. No health care advocacy, no wage parity advocacy, not even a suggestion that Walmart’s female employees get the same money for the same job as Walmart’s male workers.

On the Rose Law Firm she represented Tyson Chicken, and got them absolved of “dumping waste into the whitewater River.” She supports unlimited H-1B visas, advocated to pardon Terrorists, and betrayed her friend Marian Wright Edelman for political gain. Great record… Maybe she could be dog-catcher in Piss-ant Arkansas?

About that “no war” thing under Bill; Bosnia wasn’t a war? Serbia wasn’t a war? Haiti wasn’t a war? The enforcement of the No-Fly zone over Iraq, shooting down planes, and enforcing an embargo which reportedly killed up to 100K children ... Yeah.. Bubba sure was a peacenik…

What really astounds me is how little the press wants to say about all these people…. almost like once in office candidates might influence the FCC. But we all know they are not like that… Just ask the folks at Clinton’s Travel office…

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By Lee, April 1, 2008 at 12:39 pm Link to this comment

Bill Clinton gave us 8 years of amazing prosperity, kept us out of a major war, etc.. Ok, so he had an improper sexual romp. A very small point, compared to the bigger issues of peace and prosperity! When we vote for Hillary, we get two for one ... Hillary and Bill. In view of the huge national and international messes we are in, a vote for Hillary makes much more sense than a vote for an inexperienced, do nothing Obama who embraces anti-American racists. Once again, if Americans knew about the Obama/Wright relationship a year ago, Obama wouldn’t be leading in votes and delegates ... in fact, he probably wouldn’t even still be in the race!

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By Joe Sixpack, April 1, 2008 at 11:02 am Link to this comment

Oh and “Obama Girl”. He can count on Omama girl to vote for him, right?

Oh wait. That’s right. She was ‘too busy doing interviews’ the day of the NJ primary.

Maybe she’ll have more spare time on her hands by then.

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By Joe Sixpack, April 1, 2008 at 10:56 am Link to this comment

Good point Ms. Bert and one I should have made as well. The Youth Brigade of the Obama Crusade seem to be so sure that just because Obama initially attacted indies, a small percentage of Republican crossovers and Reagan Dems that the fall campaign will show the same turnout for Obama. Well no race in the history of elections has ever been that static. This one won’t be either.

I think that Obama can safely assume a 90% take of the African American vote. I think he can count on the wealthy liberal elite and certainly some Hollywood democrats. He can count on whatever tiny percentage of the under 25 vote, but they tend to forget to “Rock the Vote” in November. He can count on at least 45% of registered democrats and even some percentage of Hillary’s former supporters but the vile nature of this campaign will insure that a large percentage of them take a good look at McCain or just stay home and watch American Idol. What percentage of uncommited, go to church, drive a pickup, don’t really follow politics, flag-waving American men are going to run out and support Obama after being told by Rush that Michelle is a militant seperatist and Obama is hiding some dark secret?

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By felicity, April 1, 2008 at 9:29 am Link to this comment

“...when people feel this strongly, there’s a valid reason for it.”  It’s common knowledge that Al and particularly Tipper Gore can’t stand Hillary.  If asked, Elizabeth Edwards would probably call her a ‘monster.’

People who were ‘exposed’ to Bush Jr. when his father was in the WH say that Jr. was a boor, an obnoxious ass, a cocky s.o.b. and a few other sobriquets not repeatable in polite company.

We should have listened.

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By wilma miller, April 1, 2008 at 8:55 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Firstly I should tell you who I am -I am a Scottish woman watching the American process with great interest. I am pro-US despite Bush and his cronies but I am particularly struck by one thing and that is that the media- in Britain as well as the US- feel they can say anything about Hillary Clinton.If the remarks and asides were transferred to Obama I think there would be indignation and outcry. She has been constantly characterised as hard,calculating and devious. I was in America in June of last year and saw some of the original debates. Hillary Clinton was absolutely unbeatable in those while Barak Obama was hesitant and quite obviously insecure. I am afraid the idolatry which seems to be part of the Obama campaign covers up a style over substance issue which worries those of us who hope that America can go back to being our best hope not our worst fear.

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By Outraged, April 1, 2008 at 8:01 am Link to this comment

Your quote: “I started noticing on the web, that most bloggers were of the “anybody but Hillary” model.”

What does that tell you about Clinton….?  People don’t come to conclusions like this for nothing.  Anybody but Hitler, anybody but Bush, anybody but Coulter…, when people feel this strongly, there’s a valid reason for it.

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By Dave in Big Pine, April 1, 2008 at 7:39 am Link to this comment


you are so right, but perhaps we should take that even further. not only do we have our candidates selected for us, but then we ultimitly have THE candidate selected for us from the “chosen” ones as well.

I believe that this has always been the case, but since bush and his criminals got into power, every pretense of it has largly been ingnored, and it has become an in-your-face, we-don’t-care-if-you-know, what-are-you-going-to-do-about-it, out and out vote cheating manipulation proposition. the fix is in, and we are seeing the preperation now for a McCain “win” even though such an occurance defies logic and the rules of arithmatic. first we are told the polls show that if their candidate doesn’t get the nomination, that large numbers of democrats will then switch over to McCain. on it’s face that is ludicrous. then we are told that in the general election McCain is only points behind, or equal to, the democratic candidate despite the fact that his positions parrot bush, and most of the country has told bush to take a hike. and nevermind that democratic voters outnumbered republican voters in the primaries and caucuses almost 2-1. under which rule of arithmatic does less mean more? again, on it’s face that is ludicous. finally there is out and out vote fraud. there was this guy who testified before congress that he wrote a computer program that rigged elections anyway you wanted, and it was used here in Florida. it was commissioned by the republicans and used. he commented that it was probable it was used in Iowa and Ohio as well.

so while I agree with the premis of your post, I don’t think we even get to select from the selected.

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By bert, April 1, 2008 at 7:29 am Link to this comment

You write:      “No big articles about the ‘Obama backlash’ yet, but maybe that will come after the November election when Obama wasn’t able to win back enough Hillary supporters to beat an attractive republican.”

Winning back Hillary supporters is only half of it, Joe. I don’t think he will ever win back many of the Republicans and Independents that voted for him. The poll results say that Wright has not hurt him with Democratic PRIMARY voters. But he has lost with GE Reagan Dems, Republicans and Independents.

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By bert, April 1, 2008 at 7:23 am Link to this comment

GREAT POST. Well written, and well thought out. I like your style.

More than that your analysis is spot on. Excellent.

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By Expat, April 1, 2008 at 7:14 am Link to this comment

^ who are tame and not dangerous.  It’s the dangerous ones who must be excoriated; the likes of Gravel, Paul, and Kucinich.  Actually, they weren’t excoriated; just rudely and blatantly disappeared.  Pity.

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By Collea-Devi, April 1, 2008 at 7:00 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Seems to me when the Dem’s started acting like Republicans they began loosing - I have been a Dem for a long time and am ashamed for what I see the “leaders” doing. This is a letter I wrote to Sen Leahy and would write to any “super-Delegate” with an additional comment to wait til the Convention votes are in - then make up your mind - not before - Any of us can push for results - few results that are predicted now will mean anything before the convention - What the #$%^ - Bush and Cheney have made the Constitution null and void and appear obsolete - Is that really the direction the Obama people and the Democratic Party want to go in?
Dear Senator Leahy,
    I would ask that you reconsider your endorsement of Obama. Not only can Clinton win but she is/will be the BEST candidate for President and possibly one of the best Presidents’ this country has ever had.
    I say this knowing the apparent mass movement toward the Obama camps. It simply isn’t so. When you consider most of what we see in the media is geared toward the celebrity Obama - Obama this… Obama that.. with wonderful pics and all this good and complimentary rhetoric while Clinton’s media coverage is limited at best and skewed for the worst pics and only the very worst coverage and rhetoric - it’s plain to see that media can no longer be trusted - as a matter of fact they are doing to Clinton what they did to Kerry - They made Bush look all wonderful and good and Kerry look less than a village low-life.
    Beyond the rhetoric are the facts that Clinton has the American people, American business and the American way-of-life in mind when governing and presenting solutions. She wants everyone to prosper - not just special interest groups. I will list below reasons why I believe Clinton is the best option for American President but would like to remind you the length of her career, the direction of her life and the stability she offers while making changes.
    If you go to her web site you will see she has WRITTEN solutions that have been available since she announced her candidacy - Obama has copied so much from her - only the rhetoric, mind you - not the solutions that will work. In an effort to do the best possible for our country she has consulted experts, common people, and historical resources - this is her “way”. She can admit to making mistakes and has the energy to correct those mistakes. She can make necessary changes when presented with better solutions or shown that something won’t work, and works toward real consensus so everyone wins and all of us give up something to be able to win. As I will say in my “reasons” I believe she will make war less profitable and trade/research/education/production/science a lot more profitable than war has ever been.
    I would ask that you reconsider all these things and remember her accommodation to all sides when working in the Senate and her strength when it was called for - also consider all the officers in the Pentagon that support her – and the simple fact that if Obama were so ready to be President and make all kinds of “Changes”, why hasn’t he done so already given the committees that he is on? - With 937 lies told to Congress, I can see why almost everyone voted to go to war – Frankly, I don’t think Obama would have done differently given the same information - but I believe Clinton’s solution will not only work but bring America to step to a new direction - one the world will applaud and follow. 
Thank you, Collea-Devi
I believe she is the ONLY one who can make the necessary changes for our great nation. She has more than rhetoric; she has a strategy and the experience that will work — For an America that works for ALL Americans there’s only one: Hillary Clinton - President 2008.

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By theDrip, April 1, 2008 at 6:45 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I believe the good ole boys think they are entitled to my vote. I support Obama because I have grown weary of the adolescent politics both the Clintons and the Bushes represent. As I pointed out to my precinct delegation this weekend as we watched Clinton Democratic leaders mumble words of unity, the old party faithful seethe in anger at the audacity of the insurgent masses who were at their Texas county convention. These old Democrats did not welcome the 80 to 90 percent new voters as members. They did not recognize the new potential to recharge their party after decades of humiliating losses to the organize Republican crime party. They immediately began to attempt to marginalize the newbies.

It’s not that Barack is sexy, smoothe or any of that crap. No, it is we are tired of all the incompetence and corruption in our society. We demand change. There is no discussion. Open your eyes! Democrats participated with Republicans in the weak response to Katrina. Democrats and Republicans all voted to invade Iraq on flimsy, trumped up charges. Democrats and Republicans stood by as the wealthy robber barons consumed all the profit of the housing fiasco.
As the Clintons once said,“It is time for them to go.” If that means all the Clintonistas will vote for McShame, so be it. At least then, we will know who are our supporters and who are the self appointed elites and racists of our society.

Choose and speak your words wisely because the whole world is watching, judging and deciding including your fellow citizens. We have no choice but to intervene into the affairs of government because our elected officials and their supporters have failed the Constitution and have dishonored the Nation. I am sorry if the facts hurt your feelings, but because of them, because of you and ,yes,because of me, we are now taking on water. Our ship of state is in peril not from external enemies but from partisan ignorance and greed. May god have mercy on our souls.

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By Leefeller, April 1, 2008 at 6:08 am Link to this comment

Let’s face it the chosen ones are the three running for president, chosen for us by the special interests, mass media, all an illusion to make us feel like we live in a Democracy. 

The candidates are quite similar in what they promote, of course not showing their hands is part of the deal.  Walking the tight rope and seeming to agree not to agree and double talk. 

Kucinich, Gravel and Ron Paul are the only candidates who were running who bluntly attacked the war and were against it with passion.  What we have left is selected choices, those that qualify for the Military complex, Obama voicing against the war, Hillary double talking the war and McCain excited to continue the war. 

All great selections, so we are back to selecting the best of the worst again.

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By PACRAT, April 1, 2008 at 5:42 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

It doesn’t take a genius to know that the complaints about Hillary are coming from the Obama camp and it is his camp that is feeding the negative crap to the media.

Who in the hell do these so-called leaders think they are by taking votes away from the voters. I want to vote for my choice in the primary - and not come to the voting booth after the so-called leaders have already decided for me!

Talk about wimps! Of course, the campaign should go undecided into the convention. Let’s have a real convention for a change!

And as for the senators now supporting Obamma - what’s new. They are just power whores and see gaining some more power by declaring early and loudly. Well, do they forget that if Hillary loses she is still a senator and can influence their proposals and votes just as loudly. Fairs’ fair.


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By Joe Sixpack, April 1, 2008 at 3:44 am Link to this comment

Once the campaign is ‘wrapped up’ any minute now, according to MSNBC, what will Obama’s team do for us Hillary supporters? We’ve been demonized and demoralized and I expect we’ll be tossed aside too. After all, he didn’t need us to win the nomination so why bother now?

I expect we’ll be getting the old Grandmother routine.

Thump thump.

The wheels on the bus go round and round…round and round…round and round. The wheels on the bus go…

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By Joe Sixpack, April 1, 2008 at 3:36 am Link to this comment

This is only the first round. I get the sense from Obama supporters that once they get past this “fierce competetitor” the cakewalk begins. It’s a long way to November.

Maybe Obama can even win back my vote. Maybe.

To demonize Clinton and her ‘tactics’ and at the same time suggest that Obama is somehow above doing exactly the same things is a distortion and a lie.

No big articles about the ‘Obama backlash’ yet, but maybe that will come after the November election when Obama wasn’t able to win back enough Hillary supporters to beat an attractive republican.

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By Jim H, April 1, 2008 at 12:32 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I started noticing on the web, that most bloggers were of the “anybody but Hillary” model. They generally wanted somebody more enthusiastically from the left. They do not have that in Obama. He’s an equivocator, far worse than the Clintons. Only one policy area that I know is superior to the Clintons: net neutrality, where he clearly has the support of some smart people like Larry Lessig. Fine. On everything else, he hedges. He fudges. The most recent example is the response to the credit crunch. Hillary envisages a New Deal-time government agency where people could refinance their underwater mortgages. Obama wants more regulation.
But Obama’s camp’s knowledge of the Internet has given him an enormous advantage, and I’ll tell you what it is: Obama gives wonderful, fair, bipartisan—wrongheaded there—speeches. His campaign has sounded more and more like the Scaife operation every day. Quotes taken out of context. Blame laid on the Clinton campaign where it didn’t belong. A very fair-minded, post-racial campaign in Iowa, and then the name-calling started. Why did Bill diss him, comparing him to Jesse Jackson??? The perfectly sane speech Bill gave about, what if we had an election and there were no smears, just a policy argument? This is turned into a smear of Obama as unpatriotic. I haven’t seen such craziness since the Starr report. Go ahead, go to the Huffington Post: read the letters. See if I’m not right.
What Obama’s handlers have figured out is how a Democrat can be just as slanderous as the Republicans.

Please understand. I still will vote for Obama in November. But if Obama supporters work themselves up into a righteous frenzy, bringing one personal attack after another, creating the same kind of false identity as was created for Dukakis, Gore and Kerry, they’re the ones doing the Republican’s work for them. I heard dozens of times last summer that, if Clinton won, these people wouldn’t vote. Well, if the favored candidate of 50% of Democrats is thrown under the bus like the Obama campaign is doing, it’s going to be hard to reach out to the other half of the party.

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By Douglas Chalmers, March 31, 2008 at 11:09 pm Link to this comment

Hillary Clinton has every right to keep fighting….. More specifically: “We’re going to win this election if we just chill out and let everybody have their say.”

Quoted from Hillary Clinton meeting Australia’s PM Kevin Rudd in Washington today….......

“I have every, every sympathy for what Hillary has ahead,” he said.

“I appreciate that, I need all the sympathy I can get,” she said. “We’re hanging in there.”

Beyond ending the lockstep dance between George Bush and Australia’s John Howard, Kevin Rudd’s win as prime minister last November gained some support in Washington - and in response to his already having stated his preference early on for Sen. Hillary Clinton as the US presidential candidate of his choice

Maybe Hillary actually loved his line that his wife is the only one for him, too (comedy interview)

But while Australian PM Kevin Rudd is in Washington, he “offered his support” to Hillary Clinton when they met although doing his best to avoid openly endorsing her…....

Mr Rudd backed Ms Clinton on Rove Live last year as his pick for the Democrats nominee. This morning, he told her to get in touch should she need anything. “Let us know if we can help with anything,” he said. She expressed her appreciation for the offer…..

While they posed for the cameras, the pair chatted about the rigours of campaigning, especially in a big country like America.

“As one candidate myself who knows what it’s like on the campaign trail, I have every, every sympathy for Hillary,” Mr Rudd said.

At one stage Mr Rudd appeared to offer Senator Clinton help with her campaign but it emerged he was offering assistance with a climate change event being organised by her husband, former president Bill Clinton…....

KEVIN Rudd has won praise from Democratic presidential rivals Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama as a leader who will promote the Australia-United States alliance and be a force for good in the Asian region,23599,23464935-2,00.html with VIDEO of Hillary Clinton meeting Kevin Rudd at the Brookings Institution where he delivered a speech on China

Ref Huffington Post’s What Kevin Rudd’s Australia Win Means

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By HG, March 31, 2008 at 10:27 pm Link to this comment

Obama has had better luck with the swing voters, who can just as easily vote Republican, than he’s had with 50% of the Democratic party.

The burden is on Obama to convince the 13,464,305 of us who voted for Ms Clinton to vote for him.

If it’s to be yet another man for the presidency, then I’m not convinced that he’s my man.

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By bert, March 31, 2008 at 10:03 pm Link to this comment

Is this the backlash you are referring to, Mr. Dionne?

Tell me again just why Hillary should exit this campaign, Mr.Dionne.

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By cyrena, March 31, 2008 at 10:02 pm Link to this comment

I’ve been saying this for what seems like ages now, but it seems to fall on deaf ears. It IS true:

•  “..The truth is that when this whole thing began, the vast majority of Democrats—including Obama supporters—and a fair number of independents had largely positive views of Bill Clinton’s record and Hillary Clinton’s merits…”

Most Democrats at least, DID feel this way, or were at least neutral…at the beginning of this thing, as E.J says.

•  “As for Hillary Clinton, nobody doubts her intelligence. Those who know her reject the media-built image of Clinton as a cold, calculating machine…If Obama does win, he will draw on her policies, some of which are better crafted than his own.”

All of this is true as well.

But then, she kicked in with this…

•  “…the Clinton campaign’s effort to ignore everything it once said about the irrelevance of the Florida and Michigan primaries, Hillary Clinton’s willingness to say (or imply) that John McCain is more prepared to be president than Obama—all this and more…”

Oh Yes, ALL OF THIS, and so very, very, MUCH MORE!!

That’s what’s buried her. And, it’s sort of a shame. Whether it’s Hillary herself, (or her husband) or her campaign advisors, or her supporters, (like so many right here on this site,) who either rationalize her horrific tactics, or the others who have gone overboard to demonize Barack Obama, it has truly backfired.

It’s incredible to me that common sense wouldn’t dictate that this was bound to do her in.

And yet, her most ardent supporters, (combined with those who don’t support her, but rather only want to demonize Obama) have harmed instead of helped her.

I still don’t understand why they didn’t realize this would happen.

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