Monday, November 05, 2007

stop playing

I watched/listened to (I was cooking) the presidential debates in Philadelphia the other week. Hillary Clinton's folks are claiming that she was attacked by the other candidates because she is a woman.

That is bovine waste, and they know it.

She is the media darling - a presumptive front-runner. She was attacked by the other candidates because she is the candidate to beat right now. Of course the other candidates were gunning for the chinks in her armor. They should have, because that's exactly what debates are for. Candidates use debates to boost their esteem in the eyes of voters, and lower the esteem of their opponents. She is an artful question-dodger, and she did flip-flop in one of her positions towards the end of that particular debate, and the other candidates would have missed a perfect and legitimate opportunity if they had not called her on it. They were right to do so, and not only that, they called her credibility into question, which they should have done, because credibility is a material issue in this campaign. Part of the reason so many Americans are dissatisfied with our current president is that he has lost credibility with us, and lost our trust. Whoever is elected our next president should be credible and trustworthy. So spare me the garbage about credibility not being at issue (as one of the candidates said during the debate - that was such a sucker move).

I am not saying that I won't vote for Hillary, or that I will. Neither am I prepared to declare that Senator Clinton is not credible or trustworthy. At this very, very early point in the process, I am still an undecided voter. But I think that the claims of late that she was unfairly targeted because of her gender are ridiculous, and I don't agree with what I see as a sneaky tactic. I think it's a ploy to distract people from the fact that she looked weak in the latter moments of the debate. I think it's a ploy to rally sympathy for her. This lady is tough and accomplished and capable - I know that she can do anything her male opponents can do - she doesn't need our sympathy, she needs to think better on her feet when under pressure and/or spin her weakness in the debate in another direction. Just not by using the "they're picking on the lone woman" argument.