27 May 2008

It's Time to Stop Demonizing Hillary

It's Time to Stop Demonizing Hillary
05/27/2008, 12:01 PM

Full disclosure: I voted for Hillary in the primary, and then changed my mind after hearing Obama’s speech on race.

Hillary Clinton is a liar. She’s a racist. She’s advocating for the assassination of Obama. She’s put her own personal ambition ahead of the good of the Democratic Party and the country. We all know these things are true, because we hear about them in the media, and read about them on blogs, and tell each other on the Fray.

Except that these things are not true. This is the same type of politics that turned Max Cleland into a traitor, John Kerry into a war criminal, and Bill Clinton into a raping murderer. Sure, Hillary’s ambitious. She wants to be President of the United States. So she’s exactly as ambitious as Barack Obama and John McCain. The other claims are reminiscent of those spread in the so-called liberal media during the Clinton Administration. When Hillary complained of a “vast right-wing conspiracy,” the press scoffed at her, but now we know the conspiracy was real.

Now these claims are being spread by Obama’s supporters. This is incredibly self-destructive. We in the Democratic Party have the opportunity to retake the White House and to build a filibuster-proof majority in both houses of Congress. For this to occur, we must have the votes of a large majority of Hillary’s supporters. Many of Hillary’s followers are fervent admirers who see her as a ground-breaking standard-bearer for women everywhere. These energized, politically active people are essential to Democratic chances in the fall, and this means that it is important to have the support of Hillary herself.

More importantly, the charges are just untrue. Hillary has made mistakes—she was wrong on the war—but she’s not evil, and characterizing her as such is just using what her husband called the “politics of personal destruction.”

So, Obama supporters, here’s what we’re going to do. We’re going to relax. We’re going to congratulate her on her win in the Puerto Rico Primary next week. Soon after, the superdelegates will put Obama over the top. Then we’ll salute Hillary’s service to the country, and a race well-run, and welcome her and her supporters into the most important campaign the Democratic Party has ever conducted. In the meantime, we’re going to quit claiming that Hillary is a racist, or that she’s just waiting on someone to kill Obama, or that she’d rather see McCain elected than Obama. We’re going to quit lying about the woman.

After all, we’re not Republicans.

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