Wednesday, January 30, 2008

The official Sinister endorsement

Sinister is officially endorsing Hillary Clinton for President.

The truth of the matter is that this blogger has not always liked Hillary Clinton. I found her too calculating, too politically manipulative, and I doubted the authenticity of what she claimed to represent. At this point in the campaign, those criticisms must take a back seat to the larger question of which candidate will best represent the Democratic Party and stands the best chance to take back the White House in November.

It is clear that Barack Obama has a lot of passion and a whole lot of charisma. Unfortunately, his political track record is very thin, and I think he's going after this nomination eight years too early. His political missteps on the trail, especially his inclusion of an “ex-gay” preacher on his gospel tour, whom he refused to remove after it was revealed that the preacher in question thought of homosexuality as a sin and an abomination, combined with his seeming naivete in foreign policy matters, which is exacerbated by his tendency to stumble and stutter in debates, make this blogger question whether Obama has the judgment and the political savvy necessary for the long campaign road ahead. Obama needs a good dose of gravitas to go with his veritas, and without that, I'm afraid he'll be too much of an easy target for a seasoned political operative like McCain.

Clinton, on the other hand, has gravitas, charisma, and the political will to take this campaign all the way. She is powerful on the stump, and she is forceful in debates, as proven before the New Hampshire primary. She's also got a powerful ally in her husband, who, despite his political shortcomings on trade, civil rights, and other issues, was unquestionably the best President in recent memory. It is clear, however, that the two of them need to find the necessary balance between strong campaigning and negative politics. We are (we hope) coming out of the dark tunnel of the Bush Presidency into the new light of a Democratic administration. We need to unite on a platform of positive thinking, optimism, and hope. Our nominee should reflect that positive spirit.

In short, Hillary Clinton represents the best hope for the Democratic Party to retake the White House in November. It is true that she has a lot of work to do to try to soften the rancorous vitriol against her that comes from various factions both on the left and the right. Doing so will help to alleviate concern about her effect on “down ticket” races, the allegiance of independent voters, and the fear that she will unite the Republican Party against her. I am convinced, however, that if she can win me over, she can win any Democrat over.