Hillary Clinton is inevitable.
That, at least, is the consensus view of media wizards, strategists, pollsters and other kibitzers, that HRC is a virtual lock for the nomination. An official with a rival campaign told me that Hillary has an 80 percent chance of being the party's candidate, and most neutral observers would probably go with a higher number.
So why is there such unease about her within the party?
The conventional explanations don't fully cut it. Yes, the former first lady carries a fair amount of baggage from the 1990s. Yes, there will be concern about alternating Bush-Clinton dynasties. Yes, there is that first-woman thing, given that only men have occupied the Oval Office. And Hillary's high negatives, which were 50 percent in a recent Gallup poll.
But I don't think any of that gets at the reservations that some Democrats have about the New York senator. The baggage has been endlessly publicized. Her gender attracts lots of women. Negatives can come down if the electorate warms up to a candidate over the course of a campaign. There is something else, hinted at in that "1984" video, that some people find off-putting.
The hesitation, I think, is along the lines of this LAT piece:
"Frederick Cole wants the Democratic Party to take back the White House in 2008. 'Look what a mess we're in,' said Cole, a nurse in Louisville, Ky. 'It's time for some fresh, new-thinker ideas.'
"Yet if his party nominates Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York for president, the 52-year-old Democrat plans to vote for her Republican opponent.
" 'It's a personal thing,' Cole said. 'I don't like her. I think she's condescending and arrogant, even worse than Al Gore, who has no personality.'It is a paradox of the 2008 presidential race. By a wide margin, several polls show, voters want a Democrat to win -- yet when offered head-to-head contests of leading announced candidates, many switch allegiance to the Republican."
I don't think Hillary is inevitable at all. The main thing she has going for her is tons of cash, but she has alienated a lot of people with her weathervane attitude toward important political issues that reminds folks like me way too much of the way her husband behaved after he was elected. Now I wouldn't vote for a Republican under any circumstances until the party stops being under the control of imperialists and religious maniacs, but until and unless Clinton takes some stands on key issues that I agree with and then sticks with it, she may lose my vote for her if she does win the nomination.
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