Friday, May 23, 2008


Hit Me With Your Best Shot...Fire Away!!

Oh, Mrs. Clinton, did you really need to go there?

Only upside of this, is that it makes it a much easier for Obama to avoid putting her on the ticket.

UPDATE: Hillary apologizes -- sort of. Notably, the apology seemed more directed to the Kennedy family and those offended by bringing up the memory of the assassination.

Clinton spokesman Mo Elleithee said the senator was only referring to her husband and Kennedy "as historical examples of the nominating process going well into the summer and any reading into it beyond that would be inaccurate and outrageous."
Even so, Clinton decided within a couple of hours to make a personal apology.
"I was discussing the Democratic primary history and in the course of that discussion mentioned the campaigns of both my husband and Senator (Robert) Kennedy waged in California in June in 1992 and 1968 and I was referencing those to make the point that we have had nomination
primary contests that go into June. That's a historic fact," she said.
"The Kennedys have been much on my mind the last days because of Senator Kennedy,"
she added, referring to Sen. Edward M. Kennedy's recent diagnosis of a brain tumor. "I regret that if my referencing that moment of trauma for our entire nation and in particular the Kennedy family was in any way offensive. I certainly had no intention of that whatsoever.
"My view is that we have to look to the past to our leaders who have inspired us, give us a lot to live up to, and I'm honored to hold Senator Kennedy's seat in the United States Senate from the state of New York and have the highest regard for the Kennedy family," she said.
If Hillary Clinton is such a student of history, how is it possible that she didn't understand who else was assassinated in 1968. Or, for that matter, another black leader who was assassinated in 1965. There are only two ways to interpret her making that original statement -- venality or stupidity. Neither quality is welcome in a potential president of the United States.

Are we being too sensitive here? Should Hillary be allowed to make an allusion without it being interpreted like she's ghoulishly waiting for the possible assassination of her opponent? In a perfect world, yeah, she should be allowed to say that. However, we don't live in such a world. Forget about the racial component for a minute. Think about John Hinckley, who tried to kill Ronald Reagan, in an effort to "impress" Jody Foster. What if, in this overheated media-saturated environment, there is another Hinckley type out there who thinks shooting Barack Obama might "impress" Hillary Rodham Clinton? Sometimes, words need to be carefully considered before they are uttered.

This is one of those times.

UPDATE II: Oh, and talk about disingenuous! Back in March Hillary made a similar statement:

"I think people have short memories," she said then. "Primary contests used to last a lot longer. We all remember the great tragedy of Bobby Kennedy being assassinated in June in L.A. My husband didn't wrap up the nomination in 1992 until June. Having a primary contest go through June is nothing particularly unusual."

An honest assessment would have conceded that primary contests in 1968 weren't beginning in January either. This process has actually gone on -- when one counts all the preparation and fundraising that started in early '07 -- longer than any nominating process in history.

UPDATE III: Americablog has some great video of pundits discussing this incident. Rachel Maddow sums it up perfectly. Eugene Robinson's outrage is pretty good too.

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