Thursday, October 18, 2012

Marie Claire Spotlights Hillary Clinton

For those of us who gather here,  Hillary Clinton's interview in Marie Claire's Ayelet Waldman represents a watershed moment.  Waldman accompanied Mme. Secretary on her August trek through Africa that probably will stand as her farewell tour there as Secretary of State.  Waldman admits up front to having been an early Obama supporter and fearing, in the run-up to the voyage, being affected (sit down now if you are standing) by the Clinton kool-aid.  (I told you to sit down.)  For the record, we Clinton supporters never had any kool-aid.  Waldman admits, however,  that after watching Hillary, time after time on this trip, turn bitter lemons in "the sweetest lemonade,"  she was slurping down the Clinton drink which I believe was lemonade since Clinton people do not make or drink kool-aid.

It is a lovely, touching  article, well worth the read with all the drama on the final page - the mark of  a truly skilled writer.  Waldman describes her personal conversion to Hillaryism through an image from Rebecca Traister's Big Girls Don't Cry.
... Rebecca Traister describes a little girl sitting on her father's shoulders at a Clinton rally. The sign she's holding reads "Hillary '08, Sophia '40." Something about that image moves me terribly. So much so that, when I was describing it to a senior aide, a longtime resident of Hillaryland, I actually cried. After bringing me a tissue, the aide said, "I would like Hillary Clinton to be the first female president." And you know what? After spending 10 days watching Clinton kick ass all over Africa, and despite never before caring the slightest bit about Clinton's presidential aspirations, I've come to want that, too.
She broaches the subject of a 2016 run to crack that glass ceiling in a one-on-one with the Secretary.
Clinton, however, was emphatic when I asked if she was planning to run in 2016. Laughing, she said, "You know? I am not."
"Why not?" I asked. "Everybody wants you to."
Her answer, when it came, felt honest, though it was hardly different from the answer given by numerous other politicians in the same position, all of whom have insisted they wouldn't run up until the moment they changed their minds. "I have been on this high wire of national and international politics and leadership for 20 years," Clinton said. "It has been an absolutely extraordinary personal honor and experience. But I really want to just have my own time back. I want to just be my own person. I'm looking forward to that."

That was pretty definitive.  On these pages, I have emphatically stated early and often that I will not be beating that 2016 drum, not because I do not want Hillary Clinton to be the first woman POTUS, but because of what she said above, because of the just under a million miles flown, the 110 countries visited, the 1,967 hours in the air, and the 378 days away from home.  She does not owe us another minute.

Before  I am inundated by people who insist that she will do this for her country, let me be clear.  I will not be part of a pressure group.  I will not be one of the 2016ers hounding her to run.  Should she, on her own, after time away, decide that she wants to run again, she will have all of my support.  I will work my behind off for her, but I will not be among the voices pestering her to to run after the run she has just had.

Having said that,  I conclude with one other quote from the last page of Waldman's article.  If you have a Clinton Decoder Pin - go get it.  Here is the Hillary Clinton recipe for making lemonade in certain situations with foreign leaders.
To inspire local officials, she told stories about her own electoral defeats, saying, "I have won elections and I have lost elections. When you lose an election, it's important that [your supporters] see that the process was fair.
Got that?