Thursday, March 06, 2008

Politics of Fear - Politics of Hope = Politics of Frustration

Andrew Sullivan has taken a day to put the hammers to the Clinton campaign. It's a bit of venting of frustrations from Tuesday's polling results. A lot of bloggers have gone back to look at the prevailing winds and come to the conclusion that Sen. Clinton's attacking of Sen. Obama on his NAFTA rhetoric (while saying the same things to the Canadians) was what pulled enough votes away from Sen. Obama to prevent any more upsets. Oh, and apparently one of the pro-Clinton 502s thought it appropriate to darken Sen. Obama in campaign ads run in Ohio. So there's a bit of racism thrown in there for fun as well. But however you explain it, Tuesday was a depressing night for Obama supporters like myself. I've heard enough stories from Republicans who followed Rush Limbaugh's advice and voted in the Democratic primary just to help out McCain by voting for the weaker candidate. I've also heard the same people spouting the same "Obama is a Muslim sleeper agent" bullshit. So all in all there has been little good news to come out of this past election. Except for this--Sen. Obama still leads in pledged delegates, he still leads in the popular vote and he still hasn't taken the gloves off.
But for Sullivan, the important thing is to throw Sen. Clinton against a wall and have her try to explain her tax reports, why she hasn't released them and, if there's nothing scandelous there, then why the hell did the campaign take so long in releasing them? This is a case where we might just have an over-cooked ham or a conflageration the campaign is desperate to avoid making public. Either way, it's all to familiar to those of us who have watched the Bush administration block requests for information at every turn, even when that information might bolster their positions. It's this absolutism over secrecy that I, and Sullivan, find so troubling. We don't need another four years of this, if Sen. Clinton even makes it that long. An impeachment of President Clinton isn't a surprising thought really. Not when you still have enough Republicans ready to sink their teeth into the Clintons once again.
The other matter that Sullivan only lightly touches on is the need for Sen. Obama to rally back with some Chicago-style crowbar politics. Of course, Sen. Obama himself cannot place himself that the center of such a tactic, but certainly he should have surrogates out there pointing to all the inconsistancies and lack of unity within the Clinton campaign. I, on the other hand, do think that Sen. Obama should place himself front and center of such an attack as it shows that he can fight just as hard for what he believes in as the Clintons can for power. Taking Sen. Clinton down at the knees would scare the hell out of Republicans while potentially securing the nomination for Sen. Obama. It would become a clarion to Sen. Obama's 'toughness' and show that he is willing to get his hands dirty. Besides, it's far easier to lob these kinds of attacks from the position Sen. Obama is in and any retort by the Clinton campaign of 'unfairness' will come off as whiney. I say bring out the crowbars and show the Clintons how their kind of politics is actually played by the real pros. It's the schoolyard moment where the hero who has thus far not taken the baiting of the bully finally throws the knockout punch. Do it, Sen. Obama, and make it clear who did it.

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