Wednesday, June 4, 2008

The wait is over

Senator Clinton has decided, it seems, to withdraw from the race for the Democratic nomination and to endorse Senator Obama. That is Senator Clinton's right. Just as it was her right to seek the nomination, to fight through to the end of the primaries, to take time to decide what her next step would be.

Many of Senator Clinton's supporters and admirers will be tempted to feel angry at her for her decision. I feel no anger whatsoever. Senator Clinton is an experienced, able politician and an extremely intelligent person: the reasons I preferred her to any other candidate in this race. If her best political judgment is that this is the right move for her to make now, I will not question it.

That said, I am sickened by the ongoing dismissive treatment with which the D.N.C. and the press have treated Senator Clinton. They have actively resisted recognizing her right to political self-determination. Even now, when she has won the popular vote and risen above their sophomoric behavior time and time again this primary season, people like Howard Dean and Nancy Pelosi simply cannot bring themselves to treat Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton with the graciousness and loyalty that she appears ready to show the Democratic Party.

I have said before, and I say it now: I cannot stand the prospect of another Republican administriation, pursuing the same Republican party policies, for the next four or or eight years. Yet I believe that the Democratic National Party (not the voters who participated in its Byzantine processes) has set us all up for that result.

Furthermore, my own admiration and respect for Senator Clinton does not translate into a decision to vote for the person who she endorses for President (If anybody finds this the least bit puzzling, consider this: Senator Clinton might have decided, very hypothetically speaking, to endorse Senator McCain. That would not have led me to vote for Senator McCain.)

For me, the decision will now be one between not casting a vote for President this fall or voting for a candidate who sufficiently earns my confidence and esteem to motivate me to vote for him or her. At the moment neither of the presumptive major party nominees - neither Senator McCain nor Senator Obama - is anywhere close to having accomplished that task. Unless Senator McCain does a complete 180 degree turn with regard to the policies and positions he plans to pursue, I cannot see him managing it.

When it comes to earning my vote, Senator Obama has almost as difficult a job. He has left me completely and utterly unimpressed because of his apparent disregard for voters' rights in the Democratic Party and for women's rights in general. I am unimpressed with his proposed approach to foreign policy and diplomacy. I am unimpressed by his proposed health care plan. Most of all, I am deeply unimpressed by his stated assumption that he will certainly get the votes of people like me, people who supported Senator Clinton because of her character and her policies. Senator Clinton took no votes for granted; Senator Obama takes mine as such.

It is not, thankfully, my job to get Senator Obama elected to the Presidency. Neither is it my obligation to vote for him for that office. It is Senator Obama's responsibility - and ultimately his alone - to get himself elected, to earn my vote and all the votes he will need to beat a Republican candidate backed by a Republican machine that will, unlike Senator Clinton, unleash every tactic at their disposal to make it impossible for Senator Obama to win the presidency for the Democratic Party.

To be continued....

11 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I could not agree with you more. I am amazed at the rush to get Hillary out of the race. She can't even catch her breath and decompress. I just don't understand how the party can be so callous to Hillary after all she has done for it. It is mind boggling, isn't it? I feel like I am seeing the Democratic version of George W. Bush. God help us all.

June 4, 2008 at 11:20 PM  
Blogger Medusa said...

Thanks for stating this so clearly Heidi. I feel the same dilemma: to sit this one out or to vote for McCain. I can't in good conscience help Obama win the presidency, which he does not deserve.

June 5, 2008 at 12:17 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well said, as always Heidi. We're all still absorbing these changes. I am still in disbelief. How could we end up with a choice between Obama and McCain--especially when we had a true champion? It's very sad, and such a loss for our country. I know Hillary will still be a great advocate, but in the role of president, she could have done such great things. Life is a mystery.

June 5, 2008 at 12:34 AM  
Blogger CognitiveDissonance said...

Heidi, I agree with you that Sen. Clinton has the right to choose the best choice for her and what she feels is best for the Party, even if I don't agree with it. After all she's been through, she certainly deserves to be respected for whatever decision she makes.

However, I've heard a lot of conflicting reports about this. I've heard she would be suspending her campaign, not conceding the nomination. In that case, there would still need to be a vote at the convention. And things could change before then. She would still retain her pledged delegates.

As we know, Obama has a bad habit of having skeletons constantly fall out of his closet. It isn't inconceivable that he will implode before the convention. I never thought I'd say this about a democratic candidate, but I will hope that is the case. If not, we will surely see a President McCain. I have long thought him to be unelectable after the Republicans get their hands on him.

June 5, 2008 at 1:21 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you Heidi! Have greatly enjoyed reading your posts. Thanks for keeping our spirits and for your words of wisdom! Best, socalannie

June 5, 2008 at 2:00 AM  
Blogger Shtuey said...

Heidi, you've earned my undying respect, admiration and love with your generosity, goodwill, gentle path, drive, and determination. In fact, I see much in you that I saw in Hillary. You're one of a kind too.

"If I knew the way I would take you home."

June 5, 2008 at 2:15 AM  
Anonymous kc said...

As an independent votor, I have decided a long time ago... it's Hillary or McCain. So once my absentee ballot arrives in October or so, the vote will be cast.

If this primary were about content of character, she would have had no contest. But alas, it was a game of corruption and downright malice, so I understand that Hillary has to do what she has to do. But I will be watching and waiting for her return to the national stage in due time. Nobody can keep a good woman down for long.

June 5, 2008 at 2:41 AM  
Anonymous Mirlo said...

I am deeply disapointed; not in Hillary Clinton' decision, but in the process that lead to this. And I am not looking forward to a Republican Presidency yet again! The decision will not be, in my opinion, on issues, but on character, and that's where Obama will loose. Not a happy day for me! I have to add that I, as well, trust Hillary's judgment, she may know things we don't.

June 5, 2008 at 4:34 AM  
Blogger Double Jointed Fingers said...

I second what everyone else said. Heidi, you are amazing. I'm either voting write-in Hillary (if possible in NY), or McCain. I cannot vote for Obama.

June 5, 2008 at 7:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I got the letter too and I understand this is the rules for her to support him. I can't stop crying. I'm not a cryer..
She got passed over for a man with 1 year exerience..She is the true winner.
Ru

June 5, 2008 at 7:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heidi,

Most of us have left the tm site, the rest will be gone soon, we have all gone to a new site where all pro hillary guys are welcome. if you would like the site info let me know. It is actually getting way more hits already than tm, and the creator doesn't even have a podcast :)

I know you are devastated as are we all, but Hillary couldn't have asked for a more loyal and more courageous and more brilliant supporter. You have rallied us all when we were down and never for a second gave up the fight.

I am voting for McCain and I am at peace with that. I know it's not as easy a decision for you but whatever you decide I hope you too will find peace with it.

If there was one person in the world I could pick to be on my side in any battle imaginable, it would be you.

Thanks for everything Heidi and please email me anytime if you need help with anything or any cause, I will always be there for you too!

ainnj

June 5, 2008 at 8:47 AM  

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