Thursday, May 8, 2008

Why Hillary Lost

Finally, this headache is over. I've tried to keep my criticisms of Hillary to a minimum (There are many. Try to find my anonymous blog if you want a more honest, and vulgar, opinion :) ), but I am elated that the nomination process is essentially over and Obama can no longer be "caucus blocused" anymore. There has been a little pep in my step the past couple days as I hum Obama's new campaign song, Jay-Z's "99 Problems."

In the aftermath, the pundits (here, here) have been trying to explain why Clinton lost. Here's my take:

5. Too little, too late

It wasn't until she was well into the campaign that she began making the argument that she would be the best candidate to defeat the Republicans. As of Iowa/NH, it was a foregone conclusion that whoever would be the Democrat's nominee would win the presidency. So, all the candidates were trying to position themselves as the best president, not the best general election candidate. However, IMHO, McCain was the best candidate out of the Republican field to win the general election because of his centrist views and defeating a Republican became an issue only when he won the nomination. Hillary had a viable argument that she was the best candidate to defeat the Republicans, although I disagree. If she had made a more concerted effort to initially position herself as the only candidate that would lock up a win against a centrist Republican earlier, she would have fared much better.

4. She didn't unequivocally denounce her vote to authorize the use of force in Iraq.

IMHO, the most prominent issue for Democrats (the general election is another story) is the war in Iraq. There was a clear definition between Obama and Clinton on this issue. She ran on a platform of experience, but she supported the worst foreign policy decision since Bush the First ate that week old sushi. Read her speech. It shows rational, reasoned thought, but no conviction. So much for her three "cojones." I remember watching that speech on C-SPAN at like 2:30 a.m. and thinking "You could have been a contender!"

3. Hubris

This word gets thrown around a lot, but it is the downfall of 99% of politicians and 100% of the New England Patriots. Hillary and her staff felt a sense of entitlement, but entitlement doesn't win Super Bowls. Ask Bill Belichick. Why would it win elections? THAT'S WHY YOU PLAY THE GAME! She loaded her staff with old friends that wound up hurting her because of their ties ties to organizations that were working directly against Hillary's positions *cough* *cough* Mark Penn *cough*. She thought she was going to have it wrapped up by Super Tuesday and had zero strategy otherwise. She basically skipped the caucus states. All these things line up to the fact that she thought she was entitled to the presidency, but we know what happens to best-laid plans of mice and men.

2. Who is Hillary Clinton?

Hillary had a terrible problem telling the truth. Why did she lie about landing in sniper fire? Why did she lie about her being named after Sir Edmund Hillary even though she was born before he climbed Everest? Why did she lie about Chelsea being in lower Manhattan on 9/11? Why did she oppose the Columbian FTA when her chief strategist's firm was lobbying for the Columbian government in Congress? People could not trust her. All politicians pander to public sentiment, but there's a clear line between saying lies that can easily be refuted and having a balanced, nuanced position that be harder to refute. My mom says my little brother says lies that he knows that my mom knows so he can get caught and get attention. The similarities between HillDog and my little bro are numerous, but I'll leave that for another post.

I feel that the only time she was really honest with the American people was that infamous moment on the bus in New Hampshire and she won New Hampshire.

1. Barack Obama is a G.
Obama was a better candidate. She may have made some mistakes in her campaign, but she did not lose this campaign. Obama won it.

1 comment:

Hannah said...

Excellent analysis. Have you checked out the "When Obama wins" meme on twitter?