Search This Blog

Thursday, August 11, 2011


No, it's not about the 2012 election, when surely a new President will be elected. It is a mere and futile exercise in hindsight regarding the 2008 election. The present thesis asks the following question: "Would Hillary Clinton have made a better president?" The vote was very close; Hillary got within 50,000 votes of Obama when the final numbers were crunched in the Democratic primary. Could she have beaten McCain? Of course, the senator from Arizona lacked the passion and charisma to win the presidency.

We all know and agree that Mrs. Clinton has made an excellent Secretary of State, certainly much better than Madeleine Albright who occupied the post under her husband. She is infinitely better than "Condo" Rice who apparently botched the early warnings of 9/11 made by an FBI agent. A very smart and cultured professor, Rice was simply out of her element at the White House. George Bush III should never have picked her for such a delicate position, when he had at his disposal plenty of experienced and capable candidates. But again, Mr. Bush will not go down in history as an effective President, not even when he saw Putin's soul in the Russian President's eyes (Sarcasm, OK?)

Ever since Mrs. Clinton married Bill when they were both young ambitious lawyers, she has proven to be a driving force behind her husband's success. He is of course a brilliant mind in his own right having won the prestigious Fullbright scholarship. The only question about Bill is his set of values; forget the embarrassing incident with Monica, that does not affect the nation. But one has a right to ask why Bill pardoned a fugitive felon on his last day in office. The answer to that question never came through. And this is just the tip of the iceberg, as we will perhaps never know about other presidential decisions that were not quite ethical.

Hillary was hurt, deeply hurt, by her husband's infidelities; she stood stoically by him anyway, having apparently decided that the good in him far outweighs the bad. She is a tough lady, no doubt about it, though she created some resentment when she criticized Obama very harshly during the primaries in 2008. She reminds me in many ways of another tough lady: Margaret Thatcher of England, who had a successful run as Prime Minister. I feel confident that Mrs. Clinton is equally capable of making critical decisions, even if they eventually affect her reelection chances.

President Obama, on the other hand, has shown time and time again that he hasn't fully assimilated the need to act as the nation's top executive when our welfare is at stake. Except for the bin Laden raid, the current President has shown that he is unwilling to be forceful and decisive when facing opposition.

That is why I believe, in hindsight, that Hillary Clinton would have made a much better President.

No comments: