A new generation for Hillary Clinton

By Chris Corbell of Portland, Oregon. Chris describes himself as "a Democrat, a father and a software engineer in Portland." He blogs at PanMetron.blogspot.com.

I know many folks on Blue Oregon seem to favor Obama but I hope you'll check out this campaign video from Hillary Clinton's campaign featuring RFK Jr. and Cesar Chavez's grandson:

If there are Blue Oregon progressives leaning towards Hillary, I'd love to hear your comments.

On the topic of Cesar Chavez, Dolores Huerta (who co-founded the United Farm Workers) is also a very active supporter of Senator Clinton.

Might as well add one other link for good measure: last night I ran across a great note from legendary New Left feminist Robin Morgan, who after 38 years has posted a sequel to her "Goodbye to all that" essay with Goodbye to all that (#2) at the Women's Media Center.

Comments

  • RuMo (unverified)
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    My 0.02:

    Hillary is not below any act as long as it helps her win the election. Chairman of Wal-Mart. I wonder what Chavez would have said about that...

  • RuMo (unverified)
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    Pardon me: board member.

  • Christy (unverified)
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    I just want to say it out loud. I like Hillary. I like her a lot. As hard as I try to like Obama more, I just cannot. The debate the other night was the end of the trying. I grew up with Hillary Clinton. I remember watching her on 60 Minutes, talking about not just standing behind her man, but about being her own person with her own accomplishments. My brother - he just turned 12 and is just bit younger than I was in 1992 - said to me the other day that Hillary is only in the game because of her husband being the former president. He does not remember the Clinton presidency, just how different Hillary was as First Lady. Bill hurts her as much as he helps. She has made a name for herself in the Senate and long before. She kicks ass in the debates. She has become an excellent speaker. And, as unpopular a sentiment as it seems to be in this state and in the progressive community generally, I think she would be a better president than Obama AND Bill. I could make a more substantive argument, but when choosing between Obama and Clinton, it comes down to my gut. Hillary has had my support since I was in middle school. And I am hoping upon hope for a Clinton-Obama ticket, because I really like him , too.

  • Katy (unverified)
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    I like Hilary. I don't quite get the Obama infatuation that has enveloped the nation - and I don't understand why more young women aren't excited about voting for a woman for President for the first time. I was talking to my 83 year old Grandma months ago and she expressed how she was just happy that she lived long enough to vote for a woman for President. I think a lot of younger folks like Obama because there's something hip about liking Obama - I know he talks a lot about change but I'm curious just what sort of change he's talking about? I like listening to Hilary's ideas and what specifically she'll do once she's in office. She's got a plan and I think it's a good one. For a while I've felt I needed to be quiet in my support for Clinton but lately I've been telling friends w/out reservation that she's my candidate and I find it really interesting that most quesiton it. I feel like the media picked their golden boy and he hasn't been questioned enough about his positions, I just don't feel like I know all that much about what he intends to do if he wins, it all just seems so vague. I think the hip thing to do right now is to support Obama. I'll be happy with either one of them but I wish my peers didn't just repeat what they hear and read and instead took a long hard look at the choices. I guess it's more exciting to like the cool candidate? Or it makes people feel cooler to like the candidate that the other cool kids like?

  • anon (unverified)
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    Hillary's first choice was to go negative. Everything was going her way - and she went negative on one of our own. That did not inspire me.

  • pdxplannerd (unverified)
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    As an avid reader of Blue Oregon, I'm excited to see your column supporting Hillary Clinton. I too wonder why so many liberals are smitten with Obama -- especially those of my generation. The substance just isn't there. A couple of useful links that illustrate just two important reasons I'm supporting Hillary Clinton over Barack Obama:

    Check out the signatories on this Huffpost column!. Talk about women who have been on the front line of one of our bedrock liberal beliefs!

    And on another critical issue where Obama just doesn't cut it as a liberal: gay rights.

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    I do not understand how folks think Hillary went negative first. Obama attacked her (often unnamed, but still obviously) on non-debatable character issues long before she one-upped him in that debate over the meeting-without-preconditions; he's done it constantly in nearly every stump speech he's given, long before that debate and long after. But whatever, that argument could go on forever among us; suffice it to say there are millions and millions of Hillary supporters who think Obama has been the consistently negative one, and you're not going to win them over by continuing to say it's all her fault. If we're going to unite in Denver we need to realize that, as Obama himself said, "no one's hands are perfectly clean."

    On the often tepid support of some younger women and other progressives for Hillary's historic run, I wonder if some misogynistic chic didn't creep back into our culture over the past 10 years or so which has hurt Hillary - and made younger women less aware of how unfairly she's been treated in this campaign. I think there was a backlash against political correctness that translated to a tolerance for misogyny. I was prey to some of this myself as I described in a parellel blog post relating to the Robin Morgan article and some old blues songs (the singing of which I recant). It's time for Democrats to stand up and denounce misogyny whether it's against Hillary or any woman, and celibrate the fact that she's already made history this year.

    On that issue, I confess my ability to enthusiastically support Obama ended when I heard that his campaign blasted "99 problems but a bitch ain't one" at his Iowa victory celebration as he entered the room. Sorry, it's just not funny anymore; Robin Morgan is right.

    Hillary is for real - her speech in Beijing is more moving to me than anything Obama's ever said. Our political memory is breathtakingly short. This is an incredibly historic opportunity; I hope enough of us seize on it.

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    i used to admire Hillary so much. she seemed to be the best thing about the Clinton Presidency (her & Bruce Babbit). as Bush stole the 2000, and i looked ahead to 2004 and ending his illegal term, Hillary was the first person i thought of. reading "Living History" made me think she could be someone special to believe in and work for.

    then she became a Senator. then she gave Bush his war. then she refused to admit she had failed in this one critical test of leadership and experience.

    i'll vote for her if she's the nominee, and i'll be proud if we finally elect a woman as President. but she will have to win the nomination first, because she is not the best person for the job. she could have been; she had the chance.

    she let it slip away when she grabbed at power.

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    t. a. barnhart, I disagree. And for what it's worth, so does Joseph Wilson (please read) who knew a lot better than Barack Obama what was going on. Hillary voted her conscience for the people of New York whom she represented, with the word of the President that this was not necessarily a vote for war but a means to make Hussein comply with the UN. That was his promise to all of us, and he broke it.

    Bush stole his war, from all of us. Hillary did not give it to him. However she did push for more restrictive legistlation and a time limit on the authorization, and John Edwards joined Joe Lieberman and the Republicans in defeating that.

    For a much longer treatment on the subject than I can post here please see Hillary and Iraq.

    Peace.

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    Just a little historical perspective for people saying this is the first chance to vote for a woman to be president. Hillary Clinton isn't the first woman to be in a Democratic primary, not by a long shot. Shirley Chisholm was a primary candidate -- although not with the same chances as Clinton -- over 35 years ago. And I have no compunctions saying I voted for Geraldine Ferraro to be one heartbeat away from the Oval Office in 1984, it's just too bad she and Walter Mondale lost by a an even greater electoral margin than McGovern/Shriver lost to Nixon/Agnew.

    It doesn't make any sense to vote for Hillary Clinton simply because she's female. It's the policies of the person that are important, not their sex. What if John McCain wins the GOP nomination and picks Rice as his running mate? Should African-Americans and women be expected to flock to the GOP as a result of identity politics? McCain is pretty old, and he's had cancer. She could conceivably be the first woman and the first African-American to inhabit the White House. But I wouldn't vote for that slate.

    Clinton represents a portion of the Democratic party that led directly to the losses in Congress in the 1990s and aided and abetted the Bush administration's rush to war in Iraq since the millennium. They've had their chance.

  • Shawn Carter (unverified)
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    On the "99 Problems" comment: Despite the fact that in the song, Jay-Z specifies his use of "bitch" is broader than its usual slang interpretation, it's obvious what the intent of whoever the Obama person was who decided that would be a good idea. Furthers my disappointment in Obama.

  • RuMo (unverified)
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    Awesome. A coordinated Hillary posting?? Inevitable, right? Pshh! She's a poison and her votes aren't that progressive. And her husband has certainly tarnished his image. Disgraceful.

  • RuMo (unverified)
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    I'd like to add that the responses from Christy and Katy sound eerily similar. They couldn't be the same person, could they?!? Shoot, I'd have to say that that question was rhetorical...

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    For what it's worth, Katy and Christy posted 12 minutes apart - and from different IP addresses. More likely that the second one is a "me too" rather than a sockpuppet.

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    I don't know if Christy and Katy are the same person, but I do know that on this blog and on countless others I've seen Obama supporters systematically try to discredit and drive away Clinton supporters, and that's a shame.

    darrelplant, please read the Robin Morgan article for a deeper perspective on what it might mean for a progressive woman to support Hillary. As Robin says, she doesn't support Hillary because Hillary's a woman; she supports her because she's a woman.

    On Shirley Chisolm: a great figure and someone dismissed for many of the same typical misogynist nonsense and double-standards. But Chisolm only won one state. When Hillary won Nevada with 51% of the popular vote, she became the first woman to ever win a second state in a presidential primary contest, making history. That's a moment in history that we should all celebrate; or at the least, have the common courtesy to congratulate. I think she's still waiting for that call from Obama. But regardless of his action or inaction, there's clearly a negligent and hostile media at work here. It's 35 years after Chisolm's one state win, and the record is now two; I daresay that modest barrier - and the incredibly long period it took to break it - matters a little more than breaking home run records on steroids any of the other chest-thumping crap that passes for heroic news in this oh-so-progressive land of ours.

  • Nit Pick (unverified)
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    Just a small correction, we do not know what percentage of the vote Clinton won Nevada - just as we do not know what Obama won in Iowa. In the Caucuses, the percentages are the number of (semi-hypothetical) delegates to the state convention. The raw vote totals are not released. These delegates are allotted by precinct, based upon a complicated set of state specific rules. In Nevada, Clinton won 51% of the state delegate count, but we do not know what she had in the popular vote. Does this diminish her win? No, it does not, because those are the rules of the state (though national delegate count may be a better number to look at). However, it does remind us that Caucuses are strange electoral processes that are out of place in our modern electoral system (and that goes for the one Obama won as well).

  • LT (unverified)
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    I don't dislike Hillary Clinton. My oldest friend was in her graduating class at Wellesley (one reason my friend's once very Republican mother voted Clinton in 1992 because of the attacks she saw as being on one of her daughter's friends). I still remember everyone being very still at the election night party when Sen.-elect Hillary gave her victory speech.

    However, sometimes she gets on my nerves. On one of the political shows today there was a debate clip where she was shown saying her vote had a lot to do with "President Bush said.........and I believed him.".

    Yes, I understand she represents the state attacked on 9/11. But she almost seems to have a tin ear--as if how dare anyone be offended by that, or by her Kyl-Lieberman vote. Too often she has a tone of "I know best". One of the best things of her husband's presidency (and the worst about Reagan and both Bushes) was the Clinton attitude that we are all smart citizens capable of thinking for ourselves.

    Where does she stand on NCLB? Meet the Press showed part of a press release from right after it passed praising it. Does she agree with what her husband said recently that it was a bad idea "because they didn't consult teachers when they were writing it"? I've heard more from Huckabee on education than from Hillary Clinton.

    Add to that my being a woman who has been on both sides of contested primaries between a man and a woman, and I'll make my decision on the qualities of the candidates, NOT "women are supposed to support women".

    Obviously if she is the nominee I will vote for her because there is no way I would support a Republican presidential candidate. But from the beginning, she had an air of the popular girl in school--she was going to win, so why should anyone else even run? Now that she's had a dose of humility, she is beginning to act more like a real person and less like "the train is leaving the station" inevitability.

    Even James Carville on Meet the Press today said he loved the Clintons but he wouldn't necessarily say they were without flaws in some of the things they said.

    I am listening to the audiobook of Audacity of Hope, and in it Obama sounds more down to earth than Hillary Clinton (I've also listened to most of My Life by Bill Clinton).

    Those of you who are Hillary fans by all means go get involved in the campaign. The contested presidential primary I was involved in was one of the highlights of my life.

    However, I was an Edwards supporter who also liked Richardson and Biden. I won't jump on the Hillary bandwagon simply because someone makes a remark like

    " I too wonder why so many liberals are smitten with Obama -- especially those of my generation. The substance just isn't there".

    There were people who said the substance wasn't there for Eugene McCarthy 40 years ago, but that didn't prevent a lot of young people from being involved in his campaign. If people want to debate the fine points of Clinton vs. Obama on issues, that's fine.

    But I see the excitement level of 40 years ago in Obama while in Clinton I see a very controlled campaign where we are all supposed to see things her way because she says so. There have been verbal missteps from both candidates, incl. her LBJ remark which ignored the work JFK did on civil rights, he just didn't live to see the bill passed. Some women have taken offense to some of Obama's remarks to her in campaigns. That's the way the cookie crumbles, and they'd better get used to it now.

    I think it would be great to see Republicans try to run against Obama--as someone said, "the Republicans already have the vocabulary to run against Hillary...".

    A person talking to 60 somethings who were involved in either the Eugene McCarthy or Bobby Kennedy campaigns 40 years ago might detect a difference in philosophy which lasts to this day. It is very broad brush to say they were both "liberals" (unless you are taking a bipolar approach and saying Democrats were liberals and Republicans were conservative, which is very superficial). To some, Hubert Humphrey defined the word liberal back then. I was a McCarthy college student who also admired Tom McCall after moving to Oregon, and I have yet to see the qualities I admired in those politicians in Hillary Clinton. Obama is a younger generation candidate, and perhaps the biggest split here is not race or gender or ideology, but a generational split.

  • Dan (unverified)
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    Democrats are open minded people. So maybe they should give Hillary some slack. Support or oppose Hillary based on her positions. Obama, is a compelling phenomena, but he hasn't earned my vote the way Hillary Clinton has.

    And speaking of going negative, that is pretty much the substance of opposition to Hillary. God I'm so sick of the Swift Boat/Fox/Worldnet Daily talking points that people on the left swallow: she had Vince Foster killed, she stole furniture from the White House, she made too much money in the futures market. I mean, please. Just shut up. You don't deserve your vote if you can't think any further than Ann Coulter's latest screed.

    And it's completely hypocritical. The same dumb arguments don't get any traction going the other way: Obama courts the homophobic vote. Obama can't speak extemporaneously on the stump. Obama turns his back on Hillary at the SOTU. Etc. etc. ad nauseum. Do you believe ANY of that crap?

    You know what the truth is? People hate Hillary because she is a bitch. You know what else? We NEED a bitch. Do you think the right wing psychos are going to close up shop just because the Clinton's leave town? I want someone in the White House who has a belly burning to do battle with these troglodytes. Someone who won't take any prisoners or surrender, because we've got a long, long, LONG way to go to get back our democracy as it existed on January 2001. I want someone who can move like a pile driver toward very hard goals. That is Hillary.

    Obama represents a new generation and the hope that the hyper-partisanship can end. An new era of bipartisanship? Good luck with that. You can't wish into existence a new reality just because you are tired of fighting the religious right, mega corporations, and globalization. They won't honor your truce no matter how inspirational the offer.

    We all better start dealing with reality because the right wing hate mongers are going to keep fighting. Forever. Now isn't the time to hand a ladder down to the bigots, zealots, and robber barons who fell in George Jr's hole. Now's the time to fill it in.

  • Matthew Sutton (unverified)
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    Hillary is an admirable person in many respects. Her candidacy has been very important and groundbreaking. Hats off to her. I have already posted extensively about her campaign "tactics" so no need to repeat that here.

    But she is tilting at the windmills of history and change. At this point in our Nation's history, after two terms of the Bush administration, her campaign will be swept away by a movement bigger than the "Clinton machine".

    P.S.

    Yes there is plenty of substance behind Barack Obama's inspiration. If you don't believe me, go to barackobama.com and read under "Learn", "Issues", and "Speeches"

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    to me Hillary represents simply a shift from K Street GOP to K Street Dems. I think she's perfectly happy working the current broken system, and I'm done with that. I'm not positive Obama will agitate sufficently to change things fundamentally--but I'm pretty sure Hillary will not. She's a 90's dem in an aughts world.

  • (Show?)

    Hearing from Hillary supporters is a good reminder of what I wrote back in September: We have one of the strongest candidate fields in my lifetime. But I strongly believe Obama is our best choice.

    Obama is the candidate attracting massive young voter turnout and a new generation of organizers and activists. Obama’s level of support from Democrats, Independents, and Republicans could help redraw the electoral map. Obama will run a general election campaign that will benefit down-ticket races in every corner of the country.

    Obama’s work as an anti-poverty community organizer in Chicago doesn’t fit the traditional candidate mold. But Obama is uniquely positioned to create a new governing majority to make progress on our most important issues.

    How you campaign affects how you govern. And Obama is running the most disciplined, most exciting, and most effective campaign.

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    Chris Corbell on Shirley Chisholm:

    I think she's still waiting for that call from Obama.

    Me, I think she died three years ago. But I only mentioned Chisholm (no relation to Kari, so far as I know) because as with so many other things that have gone down the memory hole, people seem to forget that she ran, and here we are in Black History Month with Katy saying that her grandmother is glad to finally be able to vote for a woman for President.

    I don't have to go to an article for a deeper perspective on what a progressive woman thinks about Hillary Clinton or about voting for a woman or whatever. I can just ask my wife.

    Dan's slander of people who oppose Clinton as buying into the lies about her from the right is pure centrist purist fantasy. Nobody could possibly have issues with her policies, could they? No one could under any circumstances think that there might be a better choice -- also flawed -- for president. We may need what Dan call a "bitch", but if we do, we need one that's going to fight for the right causes, like not getting into stupid wars not, say, an amendment to ban flag-burning.

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    I'm a fairly reasonable sort of Democrat. I don't demand purity from my elected officials. I can even explain to myself why, even though I was completely against the IWR from the start, reasonable Democrats could have disagreed - given that "coercive Diplomacy" was used successfully in the 90s in Haiti and Kosovo to stop genocide.

    That said, I simply do not understand how people can support HRC for President.

    The only way Democrats are going to get our priorities actually enacted into law - the only way GOP Senators will not just happily filibuster any progressive agenda - is to have a transformative election. It has to be a landslide that gives the new President a true mandate, substantial Democratic majorities, and strike fear deep into the heart of the remaining GOP Senators.

    Be honest with yourselves, HRC supporters. Do you see that happening if she is our nominee?

    The only real argument I've ever heard of from a Hillary supporter to counter this is that Obama won't be any better - McCain's decades long experience in being wrong will somehow trump Obama's relatively brief experience in always being right.

    But if that was actually real, Obama wouldn't be where he is today. He wouldn't draw massive number of people to his rallies. He wouldn't be garnering so many endorsements. He wouldn't be endorsed by so many independents and Republicans, despite the fact that he doesn't triangulate like she does. He draws strength from people looking forward, she draws strength largely from people who look back.

    Back in the 90s, it was reasonable to fight a strategic retreat against the tide of conservative thinking that was swamping the land. Both Bill and Hillary should be lauded for doing the best they could in those unfortunate circumstances. But today, the political landscape has changed. The people have turned away from the GOP. They want an alternative, not more accommodation.

    And that will only come from Barak Obama.

  • Dan (unverified)
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    It will be interesting to hear all of you 180 if she gets the nomination. Or maybe you'll just stay home and let John McCain waltz to a victory. Either way, I've had a big enough belly full of you for one day!

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)
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    Among other reasons for being opposed to Hillary are the following:

    She lacks the humanity and judgment to understand the serious consequences of going to war: This charge was proved with her vote for the war on Iraq and her willingness to vote for the Kyl-Lieberman Amendment which suggests she learned nothing from the monumental Iraq blunder. For those who might have been persuaded by the Super Bowl and Britney to forget the Iraq war, this crime against humanity has cost hundreds of thousands of innocent American and Iraqi lives and the U.S. treasury hundreds of billions of dollars with the eventual total likely to be around two trillion dollars.

    Her word is meaningless: She proved this by reneging on her pledge to defend the Constitution when she voted to give Bush authority to go to war on Iraq. Her dissembling trying to justify her vote on Iraq reinforces this point.

    Link to special interests: As much as I admire Cesar Chavez, his grandson is full of nonsense when he says Hillary won't be influenced by special interests. Among the worst will be Rupert Murdoch to whom she will be indebted for the support he has given her. That means more consolidation of media power in Murdoch's empire.

    Her connection to Bill Clinton: Maureen Dowd quoted Slick Willy as saying that he consulted Hillary on all major issues. Presumably, this was meant to add to her resume. It also means that she was involved in maintaining sanctions on Iraq that cost an estimated half million Iraqi children their lives. Madeleine Albright, the Clintons' secretary of state, said, "We thought it was worth it." Presumably, "we" included Hillary. Then, again, there was "welfare reform."

    She is unlikely to be the honest broker needed to resolve the Israel/Palestine problem: She is essentially a rubber stamp for the Likud and Kadima parties and AIPAC which will mean continued decline in that wretched area.

    She is a polarizing figure: We need a president who will help achieve some unity among a majority of the people. Hillary is definitely not that person. I'm not one of these star struck Obama supporters who has been mesmerized by his speeches, but his is a talent that can be used for much good, including reducing the divisions in this nation. He has his shortcomings as do all humans, especially politicians, but it looks like of all the remaining candidates his positives are greater and negatives less.

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)
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    It will be interesting to hear all of you 180 if she gets the nomination. Or maybe you'll just stay home and let John McCain waltz to a victory.

    If Hillary gets the Democratic nomination and she is up against McCain, then the equation will change. She will go from the greater evil (against Obama) to the lesser evil (against McCain.) Given McCain's negatives, there will be mitigating arguments for indulging in the distasteful task of casting a vote for Hillary, which will be more a vote against McCain.

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    All of the Democratic candidates who ran, the final three--Clinton, Edwards, Obama--were arguably the three least experienced. Only Bill Richardson had previous executive experience; Biden had by far the most experience in how to get things done in D.C. and he was close to Richardson in his deep international affairs background.

    It didn't matter. Depth of experience is not the main quality the country is looking for--we're looking for someone who'll be honest, hire reasonably competent advisors but get outside opinions as well, be flexible and conciliatory in implementing their mandate, and stop tearing the country apart for narrow, short-term political gain.

    So now, between Clinton and Obama, who do you suppose that person really is?

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    Whoops--meant to being "OF all the Democratic candiddates..."

  • Jiang (unverified)
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    She has never distanced herself from Bill Clinton's doubling the non-violent, statutory offender, federal prison population, mostly pot smokers. That, and her demonstrated behavior that the ends justify the means, make her unacceptable to libertine progressives. Even given that rationalale for disembling, it is also disquieting the ease with which the Clintons lie, though it can not be denied that that is a positive job qualification.

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    It will be interesting to hear all of you 180 if she gets the nomination.

    This can only come from someone who believe that someone votes for their candidate based on a concept of purity or good vs. evil. That's just not the way the real world works.

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    You mean like NAFTA, deregulation of the Telecom industry, deregulation of the energy markets (A big wet kiss for Enron and their fellow travellers), the first attempt at healthcare reform (which was roundly criticized by lefties at the time, epsecially Mother Jones), Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Tax incentives for large corps interested in offshoring, and on and on.

    <hr/>

    At a Merkley event a couple of weeks back, I was talking to a female Edwards supporter who was going toward Clinton over Obama. She started getting cranky with my hardcore opposition to Clinton and asked, "So are you saying that there's no difference between Clinton and McCain?" To which a buddy of mine standing nearby replied, "About 10%".

  • Harry K (unverified)
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    "Back in the 90s, it was reasonable to fight a strategic retreat against the tide of conservative thinking that was swamping the land. Both Bill and Hillary should be lauded for doing the best they could in those unfortunate circumstances."

    Bill and Hillary WERE the conservative tide, and they still are. One matter that progressives need to confront is that the right-wing will always paint any Democrat candidate as "far left" or "extremist" (note how Obama has now become the "most liberal senator in the U.S.", just as Kerry was "most liberal" in '04). Choosing a candidate from the right side of the party therebye establishes that place as "the far left", and this is how the political "debate" gets moved farther and farther to the right.

    Having said that, I want to add that Obama has failed thus far to convince me that he is a genuine alternative to Clintonist triangulation. Obama supporters are very good at pointing to the negative characteristics of HRC, and vice-versa. You all are correct.

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    darrelplant wrote:

    Chris Corbell on Shirley Chisholm:

    I think she's still waiting for that call from Obama.
    

    Me, I think she died three years ago.

    darrelplant, you have a real knack for inventing your own arguments and responding to them. Re-read my post and figure out your pronoun trouble.

    Slow down a little - this whole attempt at communication is pointless if you don't read and respond to what people actually say.

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    A real knack for inventing my own arguments and answering them? Really? Give me another example. Perhaps you're just making things up, Chris.

    Frankly, I'd be willing to put Chisholm's 152 delegates up as an achievement against whatever Clinton has going into the convention. Chisholm was black and running at a time when George Wallace won states as varied as Florida and Michigan in the same Democratic primaries as Chisholm. She was a member of the US House, not someone who'd spent eight years in the White House before becoming a Senator. That's some real work.

    LIke I said, I brought Shirley Chisholm up because despite what a lot of people seem to think, Hillary Clinton isn't the first woman to run for President. If you want to devalue her achievement in your pumping of Hillary Clinton, feel free, but I wouldn't expect it to win many fans.

    I must need some time off. I'm agreeing with TA and Steve Maurer.

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    Robin Morgan's piece is an excellent critique of misogyny in the media & in the culture at large, and how Senator Clinton becomes a lightning rod for it. If she's the nominee, there is no doubt that the Rs will be milking that for all it's worth, ramping it up a la Reagan's race-baiting speech in favor of "states' rights" given in Mississippi near the place where Chaney, Schwerner & Goodwin were murdered in 1964 (and like current smears of Obama with lies about his religion that also are partly racial, based on his Kenyan father -- we'll see more racist ugliness if he is the nominee, count on it).

    But Morgan's piece mostly offers reasons to be highly critical of what the media says about HRC and how they frame her. It does not really offer much in the way of reasons to support her based on past policy or program -- the main reason it offers would be to say F*** You to the misogyny. Which I will gladly do if HRC is the nominee.

    Matthew Sutton always gives the link to Obama's website in response to the substance question. My problem with Obama is not that he lacks substance but that the substance is questionable. But so is HRC's. I don't see terribly much to separate them. So I'm sitting it out for the rest of the primaries. I'll support either against McCain (or Romney or Huckabee) because I see a lot to separate either of them from any of the Rs.

    LT, if JFK had lived whatever Civil Rights Act got passed in '64 would have been weaker than what Johnson was able to get through, possibly much weaker, because Johnson was masterly at using the image of JFK as martyr to pass a strong bill. And both of them were only able, and forced, to do what they did because of the Civil Rights Movement -- and that movement could not have achieved what it did without the formal actions of the elected officials. And the Civil Rights Movement was a whole lot more than Martin Luther King, Jr., which he would have been the first to say I believe.

    Anyone interested in this should get hold of the "Eyes on the Prize" series I episode on the integration of the University of Mississippi and the enormously violent white student rebellion against it (massive riots, hundreds of federal agents wounded -- if it had happened at a black university there would have been a massacre of the students) -- the documentation of JFK's role and how events forced him to make a choice about which he had been temporizing is striking.

    The overhyping of JFK is one of the things that makes me wary of the hype about Obama.

    And JFK did not unite the nation, btw -- he barely won at all. And much of the dynamic of change he enlisted was already underway, especially on civil rights but also in other areas. He did not create it, and the idea that Obama can create it seems highly doubtful to me.

  • Dan (unverified)
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    she lacks humanity and judgment. . . her word is meaningless . . . link to special interest . . . connection to Bill Clinton . . . unlikely to be honest broker . . . polarizing figure . . .

    Put away your long knives. These are not issues. They are existential impressions, debatable facts, or pointless observations (she is linked to Bill Clinton?--are you joking?) Why not judge on poise and the evening gown competition too? Can't you articulate one actual position she has indicated she will take, contrast it with Obama, and extrapolate a decision.

    No you can't. Because it isn't about issues, it's about who is the most appealing personality. You seem to think the Obama zeitgeist which exists in our world extends beyond the horizons to the political antipodes of the earth. We'll it doesn't. Even now hordes of jackbooted thugs are digging up dirt, and ready to turn your darling Barack into another deer in the headlights just like Kerry/Dukakis/Mondale/McGovern. Will he be ready? Will he have actual sins to atone for? Hmmm...

    Some democrats will support a centrist republican, but no republican will support a liberal democrat. You're kidding yourself if you think the country will unite around Barack Obama. I don't care how much he excites you. It just won't happen.

    The spell you're under will begin to end on the day Obama knocks off Hillary. Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, James Dobson, and 80 million of their clones will be still be exactly the same people. You'd better be ready for their negative campaigning. It will come. I hope after you stick you're finished sticking long knives into Hillary's back you'll spend some time getting ready to go far beyond the sophomoric gushing about a freshman senator from Illinois.

  • Bill Bodden (unverified)
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    The overhyping of JFK is one of the things that makes me wary of the hype about Obama.

    Chris: I'm with you on this. Nevertheless, JFK did elevate the quality of discourse in the nation and inspired many thousands of young (and not so young) people be better citizens - if only, as the saying goes, for a brief and shining moment. The Peace Corps did much to help with America's reputation abroad. Perhaps, Obama can do something similar. He has gotten off to a good start by inspiring the youngest set of voters who have in the past been notoriously apathetic. He is not the one to lead this nation to the promised land. Only a mad person would expect him or anyone else to achieve that. But a little boost in harmony and a decline in antipathy towards fellow citizens would provide an essential, if brief, respite from business as usual.

  • Daniel Spiro (unverified)
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    I'm proud to one of the ones who are "sophomorically gushing about a freshman senator from Illinois." And by the way, that kind of criticism is reminiscent of so many of my Republican friends, who think progressives are a bunch of empty-headed idiots. I guess when someone is making an appeal that truly speaks to the heart and stirs the soul, it's easy to label them stupid. Funny, though, the last I checked, Obama is the darling of the vast majority of people with advanced degrees. Are they all stupid? Or sophomoric? More likely, they're on to something that my fellow "Dan" is not. Hopefully, he's in the minority.

    Viva Obama!

  • Dan (unverified)
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    I never said stupid. Nor do I think you're all stupid. Paradoxically craven and quixotic perhaps, but certainly not stupid.

  • Sue Castner (unverified)
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    Just a thought on BHO's use of "99 Problems..." in Iowa: Can you IMAGINE the uproar had HRC used "The Bitch Is Back" in Nevada? Socially acceptable misogyny. Gotta love it.

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    "Anyone interested in this should get hold of the "Eyes on the Prize" series"

    Libraries are famous for having free copies of this for the renting. They don't carry a lot of contemporary Hollywood, but if it was on PBS they've probably got racks of tapes from it. EotP is a definitive work, moving and illuminating. The archival research must have been massive.

    Obtopic: push a guy who's got all the qualifications but is kind of boring and actually rather polarizing, and they tell you he doesn't inspire and that you can't vote resume' but gut.

    Now you push the guy who inspires and gives you that elusive "someone to vote FOR" ability--and it's sophomoric hype over a bunch of platitudes, instead of going with the solid but undramatic hard worker who actually kinda makes some people mad going the other way.

    Some people are just never satisfied. I think Hillary is fighting against the truism that most people prefer risking their hopes on something higher, to settling for a base level of grinding, dogged competence. You can't beat messianic politics with sensible shoes rhetoric and policy. And people know her so well that remessaging is extraordinarily difficult.

    Sure Hillary's gotten a raw deal. Politics is littered with people who had the right message at the wrong time, or even had the right message at the right time but Jesus showed up with a much cooler message and took the vote. If Obama should--and this still seems kind of unlikely given "status quo" polling--win a majority of delegates tomorrow, Hillary will very nearly be running for the nomination against Mr. Much Cooler Message. It's gonna spread like Young Life. Machine politics always loses to Cult politics if ever the cult goes mainstream, and he's getting close.

    What do I know, I finished in the 50th-odd percentile in the punditry challenge.

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    I'm not surprised by any of the range of comments here but I'm greatly encouraged by those who feel good about Hillary and aren't afraid to say so. Keep it up!

    I have voted Democrat in every election since Dukakis - except '96 when I voted for Nader - but I have never been as excited about a candidate as I am about Hillary. She's the most qualified, competent, and kick-ass Democrat I've ever supported. She could not be where she is without her drive, her experience and qualifications, and her commitment to the "art of making possible", as she said at 22. These are a few of the reasons why she'll be able to stand strong against a candidate like McCain.

    For the first time in my life I'm hearing nearly everyone in my family talk enthusiastically about an election. Distant relatives who have never discussed politics with me, and who I always thought were Republicans - they're trading e-mails and all for Hillary. They all know that she'll be a better President than Bill, and Bill was the best President I had in my lifetime (I remember Nixon's picture on the wall of my preschool).

    Well I think we'll probably have quite awhile to keep this discussion going; nothing's likely to be sealed and maybe our votes in Oregon will even matter. I hope Hillary pulls away tomorrow but it's looking like it could be close, as close as a 100-delegate spread between the two. I hope some of you will be at the DPO bash tomorrow night and that we can chat (or rant) face-to-face.

    Hillary has my heart... and my vote!

  • LT (unverified)
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    Chris Lowe, I have seen Eyes on the Prize. I also lived through those days. Many actions pushed forward the civil rights movement--famous actions like the Montgomery Bus Boycott, simple actions like a student being told "if you sit there you might have to sit next to a Negro" and answering "SO? What's the big deal". Leaving a church which wouldn't allow black members, hiring a church soloist with a wonderful voice and very dark skin. The best representation of some of the problems of those days is the movie "Guess Who's Coming To Dinner". I knew lots of people back then who were like characters in the movie.

    Hillary got caught in a problem which has faced many other politicians. The motive was sound but the way the words came out hit a raw nerve with some people. Any candidate takes that risk.

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    Clinton supporters would be well-served to stick to the issues and their candidate's vision. The Obama/Jay-Z story has now been mentioned three times; it is flatly inaccurate.

    I think what folks are failing to understand is that you can support Clinton without being anti-Obama. And vice versa.

  • alan scouten (unverified)
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    "I believe in coercive diplomacy." Hillary "I believe in coercive interrogation." Gen.Hayden/CIA

    Enough said.

  • Lindsay (unverified)
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    Dear Blue Democrats,

    As even a brief perusal of these postings on Hillary suggest, Hillary is a polarizing figure, even within her own party. It's interesting that most of Hillary's electoral wins are the result of votes from women without college educations, uneducated working class men, and the Latino vote. I think we need more support than that to win the general election. Obama is the candidate who can galvanize support from other people in the Democratic Party, as well as some support from Independents and even some Republicans.

  • Jim Houser (unverified)
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    I think the Robin Morgan piece Chris C. referrenced is excellent. I'm sorry more posts responding to this thread haven't apparently read it. Chris Lowe says he read the piece, but then says: "But Morgan's piece mostly offers reasons to be highly critical of what the media says about HRC and how they frame her. It does not really offer much in the way of reasons to support her based on past policy or program -- the main reason it offers would be to say F*** You to the misogyny. Which I will gladly do if HRC is the nominee."

    First, Morgan's piece is as much a critique of misogynism of the left as it is of media and popular culture. I haven't seen people here respond Morgan's critique of the attacks on HRC from the so-called "Left".

    Beyond that, what I saw Robin Morgan clearly say was: "She’s better qualified. (D’uh.) She’s a high-profile candidate with an enormous grasp of foreign- and domestic-policy nuance, dedication to detail, ability to absorb staggering insult and personal pain while retaining dignity, resolve, even humor, and keep on keeping on. (Also, yes, dammit, let’s hear it for her connections and funding and party-building background, too. Obama was awfully glad about those when she raised dough and campaigned for him to get to the Senate in the first place.)"

    I've been at this (campaigning for progressive candidates) for a long time. (I even went door-to-door in '68 to get Charlene Mitchell on the ballot.) I think it is beyond exciting that HRC (and BHO) are the Democtratic candidates. One just happens to be better prepared than the other. And most (not all) the attacks leveled at HRC aren't worth the kbytes they're printed on.

  • John (unverified)
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    Hillary is the leader of the Republican wing of the Democratic Party. I am sick of Clintons and Bushes. Anybody else looks good. I would not have given anyone odds on beating the Clinton machine and Barack has her reeling. Democrats tend to think it is all about "issues" and repeatedly get stomped by the "Pubes". Barack has character and genuine leadership talent. He has my vote, my time and my money. I will vote for HRC if she gets the nomination and then go throw up.

  • MissFitzPDX (unverified)
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    Chris, I'm with you. Hillary has my vote, and no amount of Obama-ist hyperbole and/or demagoguery is going to change my mind.

    I mean, there was a chance Obama himself could have changed my mind, but he just lacked specifics to back up his dreamy rhetoric.

    That said, I will support him if he is our nominee, but man-- the guy attracts some of the most righteous, b*tchy 'fans.'

    Furthermore, if Obama gets 'the JOB,' I wish him the best of luck-- he will need it.

  • mae (unverified)
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    I wanted to let you know about an event going on at PSU regarding Hillary Clinton. Community member are welcome!

    February 28 Lois Bronfman lecturing on "Why My Heart When I Realized Hillary Might Not Win the Primary Election"

    at the Women's Resource Center @ Portland State University

    from 1pm-3pm

    This lecture is part of the Faculty Favorite Lecture Series.

    Hear our favorite faculty members give their favorite lectures and enjoy some free snacks, brought to you by the Women's Resource Center, the Multicultural Center, and the Center for Academic Excellence. Every Thursday Winter term from 1-3pm at the Women's Resource Center; see below for presenters.

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