Tuesday, April 01, 2008

The Hillary News

By Michael J.W. Stickings

There are so many good stories today, each deserving of its own post, but let's do a round-up instead:

1) Hillary compares herself to that famous fictional Philly hero, Rocky: "Let me tell you something, when it comes to finishing a fight, Rocky and I have a lot in common. I never quit. I never give up. And neither do the American people." Ah, yes, there she is, Hillary the fighter, Hillary who won't quit, Hillary who will do anything to win, because, ultimately, it's all about her. Come on, comparing herself to a fictional boxer? And then implying she's the embodiment of the American people? Pathetic.

2) How is Hillary trying to win over superdelegates? By doing what she did for Dick Scaife and the VRWC, namely, talking up the Obama-Wright controversy. The "kitchen sink" strategy didn't work, but the milking of that tired controversy goes on. But is there any milk left? Aren't we pretty much past that brief chapter of this long campaign? If Hillary and her campaign want to do something positive, why not take up Obama's challenge and discuss race and religion in a productive way? (Oh, right, that would mean doing something other than smearing Obama.) Note that Hillary doesn't want to talk about her ties to noted anti-Semite Billy Graham or about her involvement with The Fellowship.

3) Yet another desperate Hillary effort: "a concerted strategy of telling local media in states that will vote after Pennsylvania that Obama and his supporters are opposed to allowing those states' residents to vote," as TPM's Greg Sargent puts it. While some of his supporters have called on Hillary to withdraw from the race, Obama himself has stated that she should stay in the race as long as she wants. Regardless, the strategy is entirely disingenuous. The motivation for wanting the race to be over is two-fold and has nothing at all to do with disenfranchisement. First, Obama is ahead and Hillary has little chance of winning (she wants more time, but time to do what?). Second, the Democratic Party needs to heal and unite behind the nominee and the nominee needs to begin the general election campaign against McCain and the Republicans sooner rather than later and well before the convention. Neither seems to matter to Hillary, though, who seems to be far more concerned with smearing Obama, telling voters around the country that he doesn't care about them or their democratic rights. This is worse than pathetic. It's malevolent.

4) So what really happened with Hillary and the House Judiciary Committee way back when? Her former boss, Jerry Zeifman, says he fired her for lying and unethical behaviour, including trying to deny Nixon legal counsel. This story isn't new, but no one seems to be paying much attention to it. Read all about it here.

5) In an interview with CBC Radio -- that's Canadian radio, by the way -- Hillary supporter Emanuel Cleaver said that Obama is "going to be the next president," which is to say, is going to beat Clinton (and then McCain). Now, there's nothing wrong with being honest, just as there's nothing wrong with backing a loser -- he likened supporting Clinton against Obama to rooting for his hometown Kansas City Chiefs against the Indianapolis Colts. But he went further, and got a whole lot blunter: "If I do the party line, I'm supposed to say -- and maybe I'll say, just so if anybody hears it they can say well, 'Cleaver did the party line before he told the truth' -- we believe that a contest going all the way to the convention is good for America." But would it be good? No, it would be a "tragedy of tragedies," he said. And there you have it. Insight into the pro-Hillary spin from one of her own supporters.

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