I voted for Hillary Clinton in my caucus in February, represented her as a delegate to the El Paso county convention in March, and represented her again as a delegate to the Colorado State convention last weekend. But now I think it’s time for her to drop out of the race and let Barack Obama accept the Democratic nomination. Until recently, I was convinced that Hillary Clinton would be a better president and would have a better chance against John McCain in the general election. However, at this point, I believe that by staying in the race she is harming the Democrats’ chances in November.
First and foremost, her recent negative campaigning and pandering is damaging to Barack Obama and Democrats everywhere. As Anna Quindlen wrote in a recent Newsweek column:
“In recent weeks Senator Clinton has gone down a dark road from a Democratic perspective. Whether embracing a bogus gas-tax break, vowing to “totally obliterate” Iran if it goes after Israel or noting that hardworking white folks like her better than her black opponent, she seemed to be running a tutorial in Karl Rove 101, the Republican primer of diversion, aggression and division. Behind all this was clearly a means/ends argument: she would do what she needed to do to win, and then later do the right thing. The problem is that usually by the end, you’ve become the means.”
Second, she is stooping to desperate and disingenuous measures such as trying to get the Michigan and Florida delegates seated at the national convention, despite originally agreeing not to campaign in those states because they held their primaries too early.
Finally, rightly or wrongly, many Americans (not just Democrats) have accepted Obama as the likely nominee. He has momentum, excitement, and a dedicated cadre of supporters that Clinton just can’t match. I get the feeling that some Obama supporters would refuse to vote for Clinton (and have been told that directly by at least one person). I don’t get the same feeling from Clinton supporters.
As Anna Quindlen wrote,
“She [Clinton] needs to think outside the hermetically sealed bubble of her campaign and begin to develop a strategy now for the ways in which she wants to use that [prominence]: to unify the party, to galvanize her base of voters, to make certain the Democrats prevail in November and perhaps to play a powerful leadership role in government in the years to come.”