Critical AND Supportive

Received  the expected push-back from my post yesterday; my first-ever one critical of Hillary Clinton. Let me be (to quote Bernie Sanders) as clear as I possibly can be — I am a supporter of Hillary Clinton for President of the United States. I pledge to her campaign on a recurring monthly basis, I made phone calls for her before the Iowa caucuses, and I will do so again this summer in the run-up to the election. I believe she may be the most qualified candidate to run for president in the history of our country.

But I refuse to believe that one cannot be critical of any candidate, while at the same time supporting her/him — enthusiastically, not simply as the lesser of two evils. Apparently the New York Times (also supportive of Clinton) agrees with me, writing in today’s editorial “Hillary Clinton, Drowning in Email,” that she is doing herself no favors by not simply saying unequivocally that she is sorry (to my knowledge, she has never said that –only that “it was a mistake.” Not the same thing) and that she will never make that same mistake again.

“This defensive posture,” the Times states, ” seems at play in the email controversy, as well as her refusal, for that matter, to release the lucrative speeches she made to Wall Street audiences. The reflect she is revealing again now — to hunker down when challenged –is likely to make her seem less personable to many voters, and it will surely inflame critics’ charges of an underlying arrogance.”

I want Hillary Clinton to be the strongest possible candidate she can be because the stakes in this election could not be higher. The greedy, racist, misogynist, xenophobic, climate-change-denying Donald Trump has just secured the nomination of the once Grand Old Party and even his fiercest opponents are rallying to his cause to assure a Republican victory.

What I once believed might be a record-setting victory for the Democrats over almost any of their seventeen original candidates, I now believe likely to be one of the closest in our history. If women and their supporters, African Americans, Latinos, unions, young people, and the highly educated do not band together, work for the Democratic nominee, and turn out in large numbers actually to vote in November for that nominee, we could be in for an incredibly depressing and regressive four or eight years.

For us to win, Hillary Clinton will need to live up to the highest of her ideals, not the defensive, self-protective instincts of her political persona.

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