Hillary as Obama’s running mate? I say that is a splendid idea. I was a Hillary Clinton supporter in 2008, deeming Barack Obama too inexperienced, too naïve, too much rhetoric and not enough days spent with the big boys (and girls).
Bill Keller, who recently stepped down from his post as executive editor of The new York Times and is now a columnist there, devoted his latest column to this very idea, and laid out some very good (if obvious) reasons why putting Clinton on the Democratic ticket would make sense.
Here are a few of my reasons: Women are one of the U.S.’s (and indeed, the world’s) strengths, and it is long past time that a woman was on a winning presidential ticket. As Keller wrote, and as most concur, Clinton has been a stellar secretary of state, was a very effective New York senator, and has an indefatigable work ethic and an impressive intellect. I trust her judgment and her ability to speak tough to those who require such treatment.
In addition, I admire the efforts she is making to improve the lives of women and girls around the world, be it in India, Afghanistan, Pakistan or the U.S. From education and family planning to the condemnation of genital mutilation and underage forced marriages, she has lobbied with force and compassion, and many girls the world over have been inspired and helped by her work.
I’ll let others speak about polarizing figures, cynicism and the Clinton Machine, but will say that any politician or leader worth anything is going to make people angry, because so many people do not like to be told the uncomfortable truth: think of Lincoln, think of FDR, think of Luther, think of Jesus Christ. Give me those types of leaders over accommodators any day of the week.
Clinton should have been elected president in 2008, and putting her on the ticket this year will put her in good position to win the top job in 2016. And yes, it would be more than interesting to see First Husband Bill in the White House.
(James Brock, a writer and editor, can be reached at James.Brock@mbc.net)