Thursday, July 05, 2007
The Election For Restorlution
That being said, there are currently three leading contenders for the Democratic nomination. John Edwards is going to get the short end of this post unfortunately. I like what Edwards says and if he gets the nomination I will have no problem throwing my whole hearted support to him in the general election.
The clash of the titans at this point in the game is between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. Before breaking down the reason for this post let me advise the reader that I lean Obama in this contest, mainly because of the Iraq war. Also my wife is a libertarian conservative and she actually likes Obama, but really has a lot of issues with a potential Clinton Presidency. Regardless of how I lean now or whom I may support in the future (assuming Gore does not enter the race) I will have no problem giving full support to either Clinton or Obama in the general election if either wins the nomination.
Today I read an article in the Democratic Strategist which coalesced the appeal of both Clinton and Obama nicely. Both are change candidates. What kind of change are you looking for, if any, is the question.
Obama professes to want an entirely new paradigm in politics. His call for apolitical solutions appeals to those who are tired of the great partisan divide. Obama is the veritable Rodney King appealing in the middle of the riot: "Can't we all just get along?"
If Obama managed to pull that off there is no doubt that America would be much better for it. That's a huge if, because to make it work both sides have to put aside their ambitions and work for the obvious common good. Honestly, I admire the vision, but the dream is beyond the reach of any person to bring to fruition in my opinion. It will have to be events which draws America together. Once together enlightened leadership can endeavor to keep us unified going forward. The attacks of 9/11 serve to show this point very well. The nation unified as never before in response to that event, but unenlightened leadership chose to use that unification in the pursuit of crass political power and now we find ourselves bitterly divided.
Clinton on the other hand also offers us a vision of change, but her vision is one that is reminiscent of her husbands leadership. Hillary Clinton has embraced her husbands Presidency, and makes it clear that she will not make the mistake Gore made in 2000 by keeping Bill in the shadows and trying to hide from him.
This approach actually diverges widely from Obama's wish for nonpartisan appeal. Clinton would take us back to the 90's, and the rabid partisanship of the right wing attack machine which gave her husband so many fits while in office. Clinton takes care to appeal to moderates, knowing she will have the left in the general election, but also realizing she will never have the extreme righties. If the Republican nominee has to appeal to Bush fans to win that nomination and the general election has results that reflect Bush's popularity, Hillary can win in a landslide.
The major difference would be that a Clinton election would be an affirmation of the stewardship of President Clinton in the 90's and an utter repudiation of the Republican leadership of the 00's. Bill did alot of good for the nation, and liberals had reason for disappointment despite the perception that the aggrieved during his term were all right wingers. Going back to the 90's means a continuation of partisanship from the extremists in the Republican party against a centrist, competent and popular Clinton. I actually find this a very tempting reason to support Clinton. What better way to drive the wing nuts insane than for the majority of voters to elect the very incarnation of liberal evil (from the wingers perspective). What better repudiation of their failed policies and disastrous leadership than to affirm the 90's. Can you imagine how batty they will go with Hillary on the bully pulpit? So yes... one of the reasons I am tempted to back Hillary is to see the Bush administration toadies go nuts. And Obama wanting to make nice with everybody probably isn't going to give me that immediate satisfaction... but...
To be honest I rather expect Obama to face the same challenge that Clinton will. Trying to make nice with the other side is fine and dandy until right wing talk radio and Fox start fomenting the base. The Republicans owe their souls to the wackos of their party and it's hard to imagine Obama making that crowd suddenly see reason and logic. Thus Obama may not want it, but he too will have to deal with partisanship.
Clinton calls for a restoration: A return to a time when peace and prosperity were only soured by the constant whine from Republicans. Obama calls for revolution: The overthrow of the system as we know it and a call for unity where unity seems impossible.
I will support either one if they win the nomination. Therefore, I am for a restorlution!
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