Tuesday, June 03, 2008

The guys are getting nervous

With Barack Obama poised to declare victory tonight as the presumptive presidential nominee of the Democratic Party, conversations among liberals and progressives now turn to the veepstakes. Suddenly, I feel the nervousness of liberal white guys, many of whom have convinced themselves that the only choice Obama should make is of a white man with a military background.

Is all about the pragmatic goals of winning, they tell me. Gotta get those white, male votes. As if the white female voters who followed Hillary Clinton are chopped liver.

News for yas, fellas: The ladies' are the votes you need. The white guys who love the war are not going to vote for Obama, even if he has an antiwar general on his ticket. Pick an outright sexist like Jim Webb -- whose reasoning during the Tailhook scandal would have one believe that today's generals bear no responsibility for the rampant sexual harassment and assault of female soldiers by their male counterparts in today's Army -- and you'll alienate a whole lot of women while failing to win many white male warmongers to the fold.

Your blogstress's hunch: The prospect of a ticket that features no one who looks like them has a number of liberal white guys very anxious.

Get over it, guys. Welcome to the change we can believe in.

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Philo_Kvetch said...

While I have a great deal of respect for Ms. Stan, her post bemuses me. Is she saying that Clinton should be offered the VP slot or else?

The Clinton campaign has justified a number of things on the "pragmatic goals of winning"...demagoguery, outright lies and other questionable things all in the service of her being more electable. When white guys make the same consideration in the choice of a VP, they are suddenly dim-witted sexists at best or misogynists at worst?

I doubt white warmongers would vote for any Democratic candidate (although Clinton pitched them with her inane saber-rattling) but having, say, Wesley Clark on the ticket might assuage swing voters who might think national security a pertinent issue. Maybe we are getting back to the time when a VP choice amounted to a balancing of the ticket rather than handing the VP the keys to drive the country around.

Should Clinton be offered the slot as a sign of respect to assuage her supporters? I certainly hope not since she might actually accept (LBJ had the Senate more wired than she could ever hope to and he took it, much to the Kennedys' chagrin).

Clinton ran a lengthy, determined campaign that foundered on her strategic mistakes and shortcomings as a candidate. No one else could have soldiered on as she has. She has lost and should now work to see Obama elected. One thing Obama had better not do is pick a women other than she as a running mate because, after all, to Bill and Hillary, it's always about them.

As to Clinton women who might stay home in November or actually throw a vote to McCain out of pique, I have two words for you: Supreme Court. If McCain wins with the help of Democrats, someone is going to have a lot of 'splainin' to do... maybe even some white liberal guys who supported her.

Adele said...

Who said anything about putting Hillary Clinton on the ticket? All your blogstress said was that a woman should be on the ticket. There do actually exist women politicians of competance and talent who have behaved far better than Mrs. Clinton. My fave is Jane Harman: correct demographic; great national security cred.

Philo_Kvetch said...

I agree, Harman would be a great choice. As a so-called Blue Dog Democrat, she might cool off those voters who right wing radio is trying to convince that Obama is the second coming of Karl Marx. Still, how would that go over with the Clinton camp? If you think Hillary Clinton would suffer gladly the distaff baton being passed to another, I've got a beautiful bridge spanning the Golden Gate that I might be able to get you a price on. In the meantime, I apologize for any presumption I made toward your comments. I mistakenly thought you waz speakin' the code.

Adele said...

Who cares how it would go over with the Clinton camp? If Obama reaches out to the feminist establishment (Steinem, et al) ahead of the announcement, I think it will be fine. As for Hillary's 18 million voters, once Obama anoints a 50-plus white woman as his running mate, your Webwench doesn't think Clinton will maintain control of them.

Philo_Kvetch said...

On further reflection, I think Obama's naming of a female VP would be electoral suicide. It may not be right, but it is what it is. A black presidential candidate? Fine. A black presidential candidate with a woman running alongside? Too much for the electorate to grok, in my humble opinion. As the Clinton philosophy goes, you have to be elected to do anything. On that, I agree.