In the wake of the disastrous night that Hillary Clinton suffered on Tuesday, it appears that the Democratic party's nomination process is quickly drawing to an end: Barack Obama will be the nominee for President of the United States.
Of course, this isn't all that startling, considering the trends have favored Obama ever since his 11-primary winning streak that ran from February 5th through February 21. But the results of Tuesday's primaries (Obama won North Carolina by 14 points and held Hillary's victory in Indiana to a 2-point margin) erased any conceivable path to the nomination for Hillary. You could see resignation and defeat written on her face as she delivered her election night speech. It was even more apparent in the expressions of Bill and poor, foxy, Chelsea.
Well, elections can be cruel. And don't I know it? Part of my faith, my belief in the goodness of people, was destroyed on November 2, 2004.
Hillary's support, I think, comes from two sources: feminists and women generally, who like the idea of a woman (any woman) being president, and blue-collar working stiffs who are nostalgic for the (Bill) Clinton era of peace and prosperity. I know my mom, at least one of my sisters, and my step-mom are part of that first group. I don't personally know anyone that I would categorize in the second group, but I'm basing my statement on what I've seen and read in the news.
But this support, it seems to me, is all based on a false perception of Hillary herself. Over the course of her tenure as First Lady, United States Senator, and presidential candidate, Hillary has proved herself to be less of an idealist, less of a true believer, and more of a cold political calculator. Two prime examples:
- She voted for the war back in 2002, back when Junior was riding high in the polls and it seemed advantageous for her to do so. Now that Junior has been exposed as a murderous, demented clown and the war is deeply unpopular she claims she was misled, "tricked" if you will, into voting for it.
- Hillary's husband was the President of the United States when the disastrous North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) came into effect, but now that people are feeling the devastation it has wrought, she claims that she opposed it from the beginning.
So, in the realm of American presidential politics, there are a few reasons for progressives to be happy:
- The defeatists that have been running Democratic presidential campaigns are about to be retired.
- A black man is the odds-on favorite to be President of the United States, a development that I would not have believed possible as recently as 4 years ago.
- The Republicans are about to be handed the crushing defeat that they have so richly earned, courtesy of Junior Bush and the Karl Rove method of politics.