June 7, 2008
Slightly after noon today, Senator Hillary Clinton publicly ended her historic campaign for the U.S. presidency and encouraged her 18 million supporters to back the presumptive Democratic nominee, Senator Barack Obama. Parts of her speech (full text here):
Now when I started this race, I intended to win back the White House, and make sure we have a president who puts our country back on the path to peace, prosperity, and progress. And that’s exactly what we’re going to do by ensuring that Barack Obama walks through the doors of the Oval Office on January 20, 2009.
…We may have started on separate journeys – but today, our paths have merged. And we are all heading toward the same destination, united and more ready than ever to win in November and to turn our country around because so much is at stake.
…We cannot let this moment slip away. We have come too far and accomplished too much.
…So today, I am standing with Senator Obama to say: “Yes we can.”
It has been an unprecedented primary season for the Democratic party. Some say, after the darkest night comes the brightest light. And the Democrats have vetted not just one, but two.
I found this photograph of two American bald eagles right after listening to Clinton’s farewell speech today. And I thought, what an apt metaphor for Clinton and Obama right now.
After two soaring campaigns, they’ve both landed on different branches of the same tree. Here, a quiet — and very pregnant — pause.
And we wait to see whether one will choose to fly with the other.
A world is at stake.
Photo: Judy Malley, ShootsNikon on flickr
June 3, 2008
Senator Barack Obama of Illinois has claimed the Democratic Party’s nomination tonight in Minnesota. While the future of Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton remains unclear at this time, we are observing a day of silence on Wednesday, June 4th, to salute the historic implications of her hard-earned, hard-fought campaign.
A blixity tip of the hat to a formidable candidate and an ever-defiant force. Here’s to Clinton for fighting a stunning fight and keeping the serious debates going.
We now have 24 hours to switch gears and get behind the party’s nominee, after an epic and invigorating primary battle. Clinton’s campaign is dead. Long Live the Obama campaign.
We hope to see the emergence of an Obama-Clinton dream team — perhaps when the media pundits decide to stop dragging Clinton through the coals. Let’s go win this one for peace and democracy, why don’t we?
May 31, 2008
Saturday evening news headlines are always telling. Particularly because fewer people are watching. So, what a non-surprise that media-savvy presidential hopeful Barack Obama picked a Saturday evening to quit his own church, Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago. NYT reports that he will be explaining this latest denunciation tonight in South Dakota.
The 47-year-old junior senator from Illinois has been a member of Trinity’s congregation for about two decades — that’s almost half his life. It’s also the church where he and wife Michelle were married, and his two daughters were baptized. Like his public denunciation last month of Trinity’s pastor and his longtime mentor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright Jr. (from whom Obama adopted the phrase, “The Audacity of Hope”), this could not possibly have been an easy decision. Is it the right one?
While the church has certainly been a lightning rod for controversy during Obama’s campaign, what does quitting it accomplish?
In stark contrast to Bush’s “stay the course”, Obama’s openness to “change” has won an unexpected show of support over the past few months. But these public denunciations of longtime friends or we-weren’t-really-friends, are beginning to turn this pro-change stance into a flip-flop dance (remember Kerry?) What happened to sticking by your people? Working with your people (one of them being, your longtime pastor) to CHANGE their minds? What does it mean to quit your church, of all things? (And I’m not even religious.)
Disappointing news indeed. Obama certainly has the gift of oratory. He’s going to need it in bundles and busloads to explain this one.
If he can quit his pastor and church of twenty years just like that because he disagrees with what they’re preaching (apparently different from what they’d been saying before he entered the race), how fast till he drops YOU, a total stranger? What if we say we don’t agree with his definition of “change”? Will he quit you and me too?
Stop the bus, I want to get off.