Archive for the ‘2008 campaign’ Category

Will we have our dream ticket?

Tuesday, June 3rd, 2008

What can I say?  It’s been a wild and crazy ride.

Never before in modern history has politics been so…well…interesting. It’s the kind of stuff that cable networks make movies about.  And never before has a presidential primary campaign hit all 50 states in the union and all the outlying territories.  At least on the Democratic side, it has generated record levels of participation.

And when all is said and done, it appears we finally have a Democratic nominee in Barack Obama. 

I’m happy about it, with Obama being a hometown boy and a graduate of the same school as myself. Of course, there’s more to it than that…shared ideas and all that.  But if the situation had been reversed, though, I would still support Hillary in November as well.  I like both candidates; I just liked Obama better.  It’s too bad that one candidate had to lose.

I alluded earlier to the idea of a dream ticket…the two top contenders also being one-two on the ticket. Hillary is saying that she’s open to the #2 spot. Obama may be open to give it to her.

For the party’s sake, I hope he does.

Because what’s really concerning me is the rhetoric I’m seeing on the comment boards on the major news sites, most of which fall in one of these categories:

  • If Obama wins the nomination, I’m voting for McCain.
  • If Obama makes Hillary his running mate, I’m voting for McCain.
  • If Obama doesn’t make Hillary his running mate, I’m voting for McCain.

And when I read those comments and feel the anger behind them, I think to myself: They can’t possibly be serious.  I’d like to believe that it’s just post-primary sour grapes and that come the convention and in November they’ll all do whatever it takes to put a Democrat in the White House.

I have trouble wrapping my mind around the idea that a significant portion of Clinton supporters would rather, in effect, elect George W. Bush to a third term; continue a war that, while improving marginally, still has no end in sight; and continue economic policies that are putting us deeper and deeper in the budgetary hole, than have a Democrat other than Hillary Clinton in the White House.

Especially since, on the issues, they’re pretty much in the same place.

I can probably think of no other person who would be better for the VP job than Hillary Clinton. And had she won, I could probably think of no better person to be her running mate than Obama.

One main thing that a candidate looks for in a running mate is balance; the ability to reach a constituency that he or she would be unable to reach by themselves. Looking at the primary voting pattern, something is clear.  Clinton won the white blue collar vote.  Obama dominated African-Americans and the professionals and intelligentsia. The strength of one illustrates the weakness of the other.

Simply put: They need each other. Like peanut butter and chocolate.

I’m hoping that on the final night of the Democratic Convention, I’ll see Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton at the podium, hands clasped in a victorious stance. If that happens, I think the momentum that the Democrats worked up over the past five months just might carry over into November. At least, I hope so.

The Dream Team, Perhaps…But Whose Name Comes First?

Thursday, February 14th, 2008

The Dream Team?

On the way back to my car from the dentist, I ran across this makeshift sticker in the window of a car. It started me thinking about how much the political landscape has changed.

For a while it appeared that the nomination was all but Hillary Clinton’s to lose, but no one figured on the star power of Barack Obama. Super Tuesday ended up being a split decision between Clinton and Obama. Obama and Clinton have been trading the lead.  States that, in another time and place, pundits would have been written off as irrelevant (like Hawaii) are now in play. And one can only see more uncertainty on the horizon. It’s starting to look more and more likely that neither candidate can muster the delegates needed to wrap up the nomination in the primary season, leaving it to the superdelegates to decide the race.

Some believe that such a debate will make the party stronger. To others, it seems like a recipe for disaster. No doubt this contest is causing divisions along gender and racial lines. It seems a question as to which one the Democrats want most: the first black president or the first woman president? Hard to decide.

When all is said and done, perhaps the only way for the Democrats to start healing the deep rifts would be for the two rivals to join forces with one being the running mate to the other. Not that either one will step aside so easily and accept second place. They are two dogged competitors. And with John McCain all but waiting in the wings for his place in the spotlight, they’re going to need to find a way to reunite a divided party. The only way I can see this happening is for Clinton and Obama (or Obama and Clinton) to share the ticket.

The only question in my mind is, whose name will come first.

Campaigning for a song?

Thursday, June 21st, 2007

How one looks to the public is everything in politics, but that doesn’t mean that sound doesn’t play an important part either.  I remember watching the Democratic National Convention in 1992, witnessing Bill Clinton accept the nomination to the strains of “Don’t Stop (Thinking About Tomorrow)” by Fleetwood Mac.

Now fast forward to 2007, as former First Lady and current Senator Hillary Clinton seeks to reclaim the White House.  Hillary and Bill meet in a diner in a scene supposedly reminiscent of The Sopranos. I never saw The Sopranos so a lot of the humor was lost on me. Anyway, the discussion then turns to the song that she decided to symbolize her campaign. She drops the coin in the jukebox…

Cut to a URL that tries to get you to contribute to Clinton’s campaign before revealing the answer, which is…

Well, we’ll cut to the chase (the article above did).  It’s “You and I” by Celine Dion.  Of course, some question why an American presidential campaign’s theme song is being sung by a French-Canadian singer. (I personally see nothing wrong with it.) 

So, with that in mind, should Barack Obama decide to fight back with a song of his own, what should it be?