Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Proposal for Hillary: A Clinton-Obama Ticket?

Anna Quindlen's writes an open letter to Hillary Clinton in this week's Newsweek. Quindlen urges Senator Clinton to make Barack Obama her running mate:

You and Barack Obama are a good match...intelligent, eloquent, with similar positions but from different generations, which means he could afford to be patient in his ultimate ambitions. The elder Bush had to eat some crow when he joined the Reagan campaign. There were differences on policy issues and harsh words, most notably when Bush referred—correctly—to Reagan's "voodoo economics." Both you and Obama have taken care not to bicker. No apologies necessary.

He would have to decide he would be willing to coexist with a strong woman. But it seems as though he already does that at home. You would have to be willing to let a charismatic man steal some of your thunder, but you do that at home, too. This would be a political marriage of convenience, sure, but one that could excite the country. The president has driven the nation into a ditch, and the American people are standing by the side of the road with their thumbs out. Everyone is poised for big change, big ideas. Do the big thing that also happens to be the right thing. Your Web site says help make history. Go ahead. I dare you.
Is this a good idea? I think Quindlen's getting ahead of herself. Clinton's first got to win the nomination, and things aren't looking so good (and I'm learning more about Hillary all the time, see here and here, for example). Hillary's wishy-washy on Iraq, and her portrayal in the Democratic debates of party unity against President Bush is just a facade.

Look for the knives to come out when the going gets really rough. Obama's in this race for keeps. Hillary's going to have to get mean -- even nasty -- if she's hoping to pull out a win. Obama's shown he can stand toe-to-toe in the money primary, and he's a much better stump speaker. Bush and John McCain weren't speaking for awhile after the 2000 GOP primaries. Look for a similar chill in relations among the Demorats' top prospects. Not only that, I don't think Hillary wants to be upstaged by the flamboyant Obama. If she wins, I say she picks a nondescript running mate, one who's not going to steal her thunder.

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