How Can Hillary Out-Pander Obama?
Relentlessly ambitious Hillary Clinton needs to make some bold moves to win back the Democratic base. Here's a list of unconventional suggestions that might help.
April 20, 2008 - 12:34 am
Despite Barack Obama’s comments about the “bitter” working classes of Pennsylvania and such, the audience at the Alliance For American Manufacturing forum in Pittsburgh met him with cheers on Monday when he raised the issue.
Meanwhile, when expressing disappointment over Obama’s insulting comments to the same crowd, Hillary was met with jeers.
It seems that every time the primary race should be turning around for her, instead, it stays in Obama’s favor. And yet she keeps chugging along. One can admire Hillary’s determination to be president, but does it have to be of this country? Can’t she do like last time and pick a place she’s never lived before and run there? Besides, isn’t there a rule that if you trash the White House on your way out, you aren’t allowed back in?
Ah, but being president is Hillary’s birthright. In fact, a month ahead of Tuesday’s Pennsylvania primary, moving footage of a three-year-old Hillary emerged, showing the toddler with her grandparents in Pennsylvania, and prompting TV anchors to muse, “It’s hard to believe the innocent little girl in this homemade film may be the next president of the United States.” But watching baby Hillary making her way down the porch steps, one could almost hear the internal script: “Weekend Itinerary: Hang out with grandparents in battleground state of Pennsylvania, wear frilly white dress, make sure camera is present, retrieve tape in election year 2004 or 2008, depending on how well things go…”
It seems that Hillary was never a “little girl” and planned her political career from the womb. You think when she says “Americans want someone who’s ready on Day One” that she’s talking about Inauguration Day? More likely – she means conception. In an ode to such dedicated ambition, here is a list of things Hillary must do to reclaim the Democratic base and salvage her campaign:
1. Get back to her roots: As the original black First Couple, Hillary and Bill were spewing anti-white, anti-religious, anti-gun rhetoric years before anyone had even heard the name Barack Obama. In fact, Bill Clinton made the following comment more than a year before Barack and Michelle Obama got married: “The reason (George H. W. Bush’s tactic) works so well now is that you have all these economically insecure white people who are scared to death.” So remind people that before there was a Barack Obama, before there was a Reverend Wright, there was Billary.
2. To win back female voters defecting to the Obama camp, pimp Bill out to win them over with the formula that worked for Hollywood actresses: Sleep with Bill; Vote for Hillary. (This alone will earn the title “Madame President.”) Oh, and don’t get mad at rallies if women throw their underwear at Bill.
3. Reassure the faithful once more that she’s always been a preying person. And remind them that abortions are down by almost half a million every year since the 90s: clearly, more women are keeping their babies because there’s some cachet to having a former president’s child.
4. Explain to voters that they don’t have to choose between electing a female president and a black president-with Hillary they again get a two-for-one deal: female and black. (Lest we think Bill a self-loathing brother who married a white woman.)
5. Inform the public that Obama isn’t really black. In fact, since his mother was white – according to Jewish law, he’s white. (Emphasize that, no better than Bill, Barack also falls asleep when black people are talking; how else to explain his missing all of Rev. Wright’s nastier sermons if not a 20-year power nap?)
6. Marshal the sisterhood! Emphasize that there are enough men screwing up the world, so it’s time to give a woman a chance!
7. Demonstrate that there is no conflict between being a “security president” and an “environment president,” by blasting both Obama and McCain for calling to shut down the Guantanamo Bay camp without considering the devastating effects of this on the environment: think of all the free radicals that would be floating around!
8. Promise that if elected, she’ll come out of the closet and tell us who the real first lady is. (e.g. Huma Abedin, Hillary’s rumored Arab girlfriend-an obvious rebellion against Bill’s more Jewish preferences.)
9. Assure the country that it will be safer under a Hillary presidency than a McCain or Obama presidency, by reminding voters that she has a proven track record of making her enemies disappear.
10 If all else fails, cry again. But explain that the Democratic Party has been the party of the Clintons for the past 16 years, so it’s her party and she can cry if she wants to.
11. As a last resort, she can always have the Serbs bombed again. She saved her husband’s presidency this way; why not do the same for hers? (Hillary’s note to self: in such event, fly to Bosnia/Kosovo/Serbia to duck sniper fire on camera, and back-date the footage.)
12. But most importantly-in light of the recent Obama/Pennsylvania hullabaloo, Hillary needs to keep it real and tap back into the girl who spoke at Harlem’s Riverside Church while campaigning for the Senate in 2000, saying that “if Amadou [Diallo] had been a white man in an all-white neighborhood, he would still be alive.” Where is the girl who just last June got a partly standing ovation from an All American Presidential Forum when she said, “If HIV/AIDS were the leading cause of death of white women between the ages of 25 and 34, there would be an outraged outcry in this country.”
13. Indeed, rather than criticize Obama for his racial divisiveness, Hillary needs to look upon him as a mirror of her former self-and reclaim the panderer mantel that Obama is trying to steal from her. Instead of defending working-class white America’s clinging to guns, religion and suspicions of those who aren’t like them as “culture” and “tradition”-which clearly goes unappreciated — she should re-adopt her old motto about such folks: “Screw ‘em.”
14. Finally, warn voters that Michelle Obama, who obviously wears the pants around the house, is the driving force behind Obama’s candidacy, that she is a calculating woman who is really just positioning herself for a future White House run.
Julia Gorin is author of the new humor title Clintonisms: The Amusing, Confusing, and Even Suspect Musing, of Billary