Speaking of Predictions, Speculation and Resolutions . . .Posted: December 31, 2011
I confess the rolling rumor that Hillary Clinton is a perfect match as the Democratic VP candidate in 2012 fills me with absolute dread. It’s not because I don’t think she’s qualified or could do the ribbon-cutting ceremonies with her eyes closed. It’s because she’s over-qualified and could do the ribbon-cutting ceremonies with her eyes closed.
Hillary Clinton riding shotgun does not appeal to any of my senses or sensibilities. In fact, it makes me damn angry. Outraged, if you will. In 2008, the electorate was beguiled, bewitched and hoodwinked by a presidential campaign that sold Barack Obama as the American Idol President, the man who would hold back the seas, bring world peace and a variety of other nonsense. The man took the Nobel Peace prize without a single accomplishment then promptly continued George Bush’s wars and policies with great gusto.
In contrast, Hillary Rodham Clinton was portrayed as tiresome, inexperienced former First Lady who’d held white-glove receptions, serving tea like a Geisha girl. Any accomplishment—her amazing speech in Beijing, her influence in Ireland, her tireless efforts to raise the profile of women and girls throughout the world, her staunch stand on civil rights and her genuine outreach to working class Americans were pooh-poohed and discounted. It was all an act, her critics said. She was a clone of her husband, Bill Clinton, who was demonized by the so-called regressive/progressives though he was the most popular President since FDR. Was the man perfect? Hardly. But he was an effective leader. The Right-Wing noise machine could not bring the Clinton mystique down, even after the Monica Lewinsky debacle.
That would be left to the Democratic leadership. They turned their back on B. Clinton’s enormous popularity in 2000 [at the expense of Al Gore], and then called Clinton a racist in 2008 for remarks made on the campaign trail.
Barack Obama was the Party’s man and Wall Street’s gift. A gift from God, Nancy Pelosi said. The One we’ve been waiting for, Oprah gushed. He’s almost like a god, Evan Thomas, then editor of Newsweek, exclaimed on the Charlie Rose show.
However, the old maxim of ‘what goes up, must come down’ was still in play. And the ‘gift from God,’ the President hailed as the world’s savior, landed with a resounding thud once in office.
In Karma-like fashion, Hillary Clinton has flown to amazing heights in her role as Secretary of State—the most admired woman in the world. She has garnered praise from old enemies, even the Republican hate machine. Regardless of where you stand on American foreign policy, you’d be hard pressed to ignore her non-stop travel, her enthusiastic reception abroad and her unrelenting support for women’s issues around the globe. She’s the Energizer Bunny. Unflappable, seemingly indefatigable.
I feel exhausted just reading her daily schedule.
But now as the 2012 election season gears up, we’re inundated with stories that Obama will switch out Joe Biden for Hillary Clinton—Biden will take State and Hillary will slip right into the number 2 position in DC.
The question is why? Why would Hillary Clinton step down from the very public and important position as the country’s SOS to accept the very useless position of Vice President? Hillary is aiming to cut Joe Biden’s throat? No, don’t think so. Everything I’ve read has Clinton and Biden on very friendly, mutually respectful terms. Obama is hankering to throw Joe Biden under the bus? Again, everything I’ve read indicates that despite his gaffes, Joe Biden has been a loyal Obama helpmate not a hindrance [although throwing people under the bus seems a favorite White House sport].
Robert Reich, whose columns I read and generally agree with wrote an Op-Ed for Nation of Change where he made a personal prediction for 2012:
Reich went on to state:
Because Obama needs to stir the passions and enthusiasms of a Democratic base that’s been disillusioned with his cave-ins to regressive Republicans. Hillary Clinton on the ticket can do that.
Yes, he does and yes, she could stir things up for many disillusioned [dare I say appalled] Democrats. But why should she? Why should Hillary Clinton come running in to clean house and save Obama’s ass?
Reich goes onto say:
Clinton would help deflect attention from the bad economy and put it on foreign policy, where she and Obama have shined.
Oh, please pass the upchuck bag. Yes, Hillary could cheer the troops and deflect the bad news and . . .
In addition, Reich concludes:
The deal would also make Clinton the obvious Democratic presidential candidate in 2016 — offering the Democrats a shot at twelve (or more) years in the White House . . .
Do you feel manipulated yet?
This is on the heels of Hillary Clinton’s own statement that she has no intention of seeking public office after 2012. But as we all know women have that cra-a-zy habit of changing their minds.
As do all politicians.
But Reich is not alone in floating this balloon. His article was quickly followed by former Virginia Governor Doug Wilder saying what a fine idea this was on Neil Cavuto’s show [that would be Fox News] and how Biden’s many public gaffes had made him a liability.
Say it ain’t so, Joe.
In fact, Wilder went so far as to suggest that if something happened to President Obama, Joe Biden stepping in would be too awful to contemplate.
He’s kidding, right? And again, he picked up the thread that this could be Hillary’s path to the White House in 2016.
On Friday night, I heard the same statement coming from a guest on Al Sharpton’s MSNBC show. I must say the Reverend seemed somewhat miffed, responding with a variation of: If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. In other words, Barack Obama don’t need no stinking woman to prop him up.
But these swirling stories/rumors have been in circulation for months on end. The most recent version was whipped up shortly before Christmas by Pat Caddell and Doug Shoen. Caddell, former pollster for Jimmy Carter and Shoen, former pollster for Bill Clinton, have called for a grassroots write-in campaign for Hillary in New Hampshire. That would be for President. The reason?
The crisis of national leadership.
That’s a hard line to argue against. However, the days when I got any satisfaction in saying–We told you so—are long gone.
I’m absolutely cynical about this sudden burst of love and admiration for Hillary Clinton. I don’t like the VP idea one bit. Sorry. It’s either the catbird seat or no seat at all. Hillary Clinton earned the nomination in 2008. She was undisputedly the best the candidate then and now.
For President, not Den Mother.
Clinton has said she has no desire to run again in any capacity. Until I hear words to the contrary from her lips, I respect that decision and have resigned myself that Hillary Rodham Clinton will leave the political stage in 2012.
I’d like to be wrong; 2016 is not an Eternity. I resent being manipulated by a power structure that seemingly has few principles beyond winning at all costs, at everyone’s expense: you, me and a woman who has given far more to public service than the smarmy pundits—her passion, time, competence, knowledge and I suspect, even her health.
Color me suspicious and skeptical. If this is some tacky way to win the ‘female vote’ in a razor-thin election, you can count me out. If Clinton is offered the VP spot, I hope she refuses. It would break my heart to vote against her. But I will not vote for a continuation of Barack Obama’s miserable administration. Not for the good of the Party [what’s left of it] or the specter of monstrous SCOTUS appointments.
Not even for Hillary.
The New Year is looking to bring a host of challenges and a myriad of predictions. I hope the recent VP chatter is just that–chatter. In the weeks and months ahead, I’m planning to focus on impressive legislative candidates for 2012, strong progressives fighting to keep seats or claim new wins for Democratic principles in the House and Senate. These are individuals who could really make a difference in the lives of average Americans. It’s a fight worth having.
As for the Presidential race? I’ve pretty much thrown my hands up. Unless, of course, you’re willing to speculate on a Democratic primary challenge.
Now that’s something even I could believe in!