Clinton, the Black Contingency & the Political Machine
the real chance for a President that’s not a white man
Don’t mean to take the phrase from Harry Carey, an old white man for baseball and the Cubs in Chicago, but holy cow. Nobody has mentioned it, but in the race for the Democrat nomination for President of the United States, the two major contenders are a woman and a half-black man. The media has talked January through March 07 about Barrack Obama, how amazing it is that the an African-American (well, half white, half Kenyan) has such great support from the white community, and how he may have no problem running for President. Granted, they said this while Hillary Clinton also declared her decision to run for the Democratic seat, and nobody said boo about the first woman having a real chance at running for President.
Now, I know I wrote before about Hillary Clinton probably not being able to pull off running for President (see the editorial from the April 2006 issue of cc&d, http://scars.tv/ccdissues/ccd159april06.htm, which is also in this collection on page 15), but when I wrote that editorial, I forgot to consider the candidates seem to mold themselves into whatever they think the public wants so they can pull off temporarily pulling the wool of the public’s eyes. Although Hillary is actually insanely left of center (I mean, insanely), she’s got one weapon that nobody else has. Bill.
People can rip on Bill Clinton, say he didn’t do enough to stop Bin Laden before he attacked us in the beginning of Bush’s presidency; people can say he did nothing to really help the economy (which allowed for it’s downfall by the time he was leaving); people can say the people didn’t pay attention to his lack of proper politicking because he was doing some left-of-center sexual acts with a slightly overweight woman (who later went on to leave her mark in the world by designing hand-bags... class act, Monica). But some people will also tell you that they don’t know if previous decisions economically and presidentially made a difference, but President Bill Clinton’s presidency coincided with the largest economic boom people have seen in I don’t know how many years. And some people will also say that the only terrorist attack was a relatively minor occurrence to the garage of the World Trade Centers, without the destruction and casualties of the 9/11 attacks. A part of me is ashamed of it, but since I didn’t pay that much attention to politics in the 90s, I even voted for Bill Clinton.
Now, I say that I voted for him in the past (with the knowledge I have now, I wouldn’t vote for him, and no, I wouldn’t vote for the Republican candidate either), but with what I know now, I previously wrote that his wife probably wouldn’t win the presidency (even if she is great, she’s a woman, and people, whether or not they say it, have issue with a non-white or a non-male as their President). But as I said before, I forgot to consider in my last editorial that politicians can re-mold themselves into whatever the public wants to try to win a candidacy... And Hillary has the smoothest-talking husband as a man to help push her over the top as she runs for this office.
The problem with having Bill at her side (they’re like a package deal in some respects, at least while she’s running), is that Republicans who have a problem with Bill will possibly make a point to vote against Hillary because of Bill’s presence. Despite this, Bill can help to collect funds (she’s got more money in her coffers than anyone else will, trust me): he even appeared on the Daily Show in 2006, turning on the charm, and never saying if he knew his wife would run for office. He didn’t say anything about Hillary, but his presence helped her chances, even if it was only to put the idea of his wife as President into the public spotlight.
As Hillary’s top fund-raising draw, Bill will be there for Hillary’s fund raising events — albeit in the background — and he plans to go to the states that were strong with him when he ran for President successfully twice, to hopefully sway more people to support his wife. Granted, he’s in the background to let Hillary take center stage when talking about her policies and making her own stand, but he’s there, drawing people to look more closely at his wife for the potential next President. Hillary is a lawyer, and has learned to play the political game when she was the First Lade for eight years, as well as buring her role as a senator for New York — and as I said before, she’s paying well for a crack-team to mold her into whatever they feel she needs to be to win over the country again. And yeah, although Bill stays in the background when Hillary is meeting with people, she hopes Bill’s legacy as a hero for the Black community will help her when opposing a Black candidate for the Democratic ticket.
But it looks like Hillary doesn’t have to worry too much about Barrack Obama talking the black vote, because early reports suggest that the black community isn’t too pleased with Obama. Barrack has even told people that although he doesn’t always feel the same connection the rest of the back community feels, he tried to emphasize that he sees the same problems with the government that he hopes the black community can relate to. That and he uses historic references (like keeping with his Chicago connection and going to the building steps in Springfield Illinois to announce his running for the Democratic candidacy, like where Lincoln did his house divided speech back in the day, in an attempt to tie him with the President who freed the slaves) to appeal to everyone when he’s running. But Obama did get Geffen’s support in Hollywood (meaning a lot of money and a bunch of publicity), which initially shocked the Clinton camp (because Hollywood was usually on Bill’s side so much in the past). So even the Hollywood elite may be splitting their devotion between them before the Democratic candidates is decided...
I even read a news brief at the Naples Daily News (02/20/07) that Hillary (I had to refer to her by her first name, just so everyone know when I mention “Clinton” that I’m referring to Hillary and not Bill) hired Sen. Darrell Jackson, an African-American whose media-consulting firm negotiated a $10,000 per month contract with Hillary Rodham (if I use her last name, I’ll try to start using her maiden name in her name more too, to try to separate her from her husband, President Bill Clinton) Clinton’s campaign. People question Jackson’s choice to go with endorsing Rodham Clinton, but he was involved with Bill Clinton’s campaign... He even took Rodham Clinton’s offer and not offers that offered him more money.
And people wonder if any racial references should be made in this choice (considering that Jackson could have gone with John Edwards or Sen. Barrack Obama (D-Ill), but I don’t really know if one is to be made. First of all, Jackson worked with Hillary’s husband, and secondly, Republican or Democrat, both sides are really supposed to not be looking at race of best people for the job (I don’t think people give our current President Bush enough credit for this, for example — his cabinet contains the most racially divers group, he has included Colin Powell, and African-American, and Condoleeza Rice, and African-American woman, in his cabinet, as well as a latino Attorney General). I don’t know if racial decisions can be made on this choice for endorsement, though — Jackson worked with her husband before, and close ties like that may be hard to break.
But having this discussion of endorsement based on race is what the point of this editorial is — consider the fact that we’re picking on a viable female Democratic Presidential candidate choosing an African-American from a media-consulting firm, versus having him support aviable African-American Democratic Presidential candidate. If these are the things our nation has to worry about, and not if their candidate is a woman or an African-American, maybe we’re starting to get on the right track in this country.
with sidebar #1:
the Al Gore Factor
After the Academy Awards in February 2007, Al Gore won an Oscar for best documentary (and Melissa Etheridge even won for her song in an Inconvenient Truth), Hollywood and the media wondered if Al Gore would run once again for the Presidency. Although the Hollywood factor seems to support the idea of Gore running (even when he only joked about running while speaking on stage with Leonardo DiCaprio at the Academy Awards), people wonder if it’s a good idea for him to run (because Presidential candidates with Hollywood support historically were often losing candidates, even if Reagan won the hearts of every Republican under the sun). Global warming was a relative fringe issue through the 90s, and after the movie an Inconvenient Truth was released, a great majority of people believe this is an issue we should work to counteract and solve. He has stated that he really doesn’t have the intention to run for President, and by staying on the sidelines of the political debate allows him to not be torn apart by other political contenders. Besides, just try to envision that he could be running as President against the wife of the man he was Vice President with through the 90s...
Al Gore says he’s not planning to run, but he does stay on the sidelines, even if only by pushing his new goal of changing the country by making it not be so recklessly abusive with fossil fuels. But by staying in the spotlight somehow, the media continues to idolize him and pose the “what if...” question to the public.
with sidebar #2:
Romney, Guilliani & Republican notes...
Read an AP headline at the Naples Daily News (02/20/07) that Republican presidential candidate “Romney defends opposition of embryonic stem cell research”... And in an AP article read in the Naples Daily News(02/25/07), a headline read “Polygamy prominent feature in Romney family tree.” Romney condemns polygamy, but his great-grandfather had 5 wives, and his great-great-grandfather had 21. Though of major political contenders, he’s the only one who has been successfully married only one wife (I think other Republican contenders are on their 2nd or 3rd wife...), but early in the political Presidential campaign the forerunners still are Hillary Clinton (even though at least 40% of people, mostly Republicans, would never vote for her), and oddly enough, Rudy Guilliani (because of knowledge of him after 9/11, even though many people are unaware of him as a Republican contender who supports civil unions for same-sex couples and abortion rights).
Speaking of Guilliani, it was reported in the Naples Daily News (02/27/07) that he explained why he switched from being a Democrat to a Republican, and that the main issue was in how the two parties consider taxes. The Liz Sidoti article explained, “In the days of President Kennedy, Democrats understood the concept of private economy and cutting taxes,” which seems to have now changed. Guilliani even quotes Winston Churchill as saying, “If you’re not a liberal when you’re 20, you have no heart, but if you’re not a conservative by the time you’re 40, you have no brain.”
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