Monday, August 18, 2008

[Updated 8/21] The case for party unity

I have previously reacted badly to repeated news stories about PUMAs and other Clinton-supporters wanting to sink Obama. I feel no different now; just a little less intensely so. Having lived for almost eight years under a Republican administration (almost my entire stay in the US), I am just thirsty for some change from the bellicose posturing* that has embodied US policy, both domestic and foreign. And these die-hard Clintonistas (most appear to be women) are not making things any easier.
[*Props to Senator Evan Bayh for putting this term in my head.]
Thankfully, there are people like Kathryn Oberly, a strong Clinton backer, who's now with the Obama campaign. And commenter Alkibiades, who donated to Obama even while grieving for Clinton's loss. But the 25% of Democrats who are now either with McCain or undecided and are likely Clinton supporters, could make a crucial difference to the outcome of this November's election.
I really hope Obama picks Kathleen Sebelius or (even better!) Janet Napolitano as his VP. Folks who think a female VP pick should be Clinton only do a disservice to the many other competent women in this country, or else belong to a cult of (Clintonian) personality - I don't know which is worse.

But whoever the VP pick is, I implore Democrats and Dem-leaning independents to remember all the things that made the past eight years a complete disaster - a rush to war in Iraq, tax-breaks in the time of war, woefully underfunded NCLB, persistently-administration-favoring/anti-civil-rights Justices Alito and Roberts, manipulation of science, pushing of religion under the guise of academic freedom... And the certain guarantee that many, if not all, of these positions and policies, will be continued and even built upon/exceeded, if that is possible, under a McCain administration.
The choice this November is not between the lesser of two evils, as many Naderites thought back in 2000. No - this is a choice between "reasonably right" and "simply wrong."

Coda: (8/21) I just did my bit towards relieving Senator Clinton's primary debt. Despite President Clinton's classically-Clintonian back-handed support of Senator Obama's candidacy and praise for Senator McCain, and hoping that the contribution goes to some small-time vendor, not Mark frakking Penn. And yes, it was legal - I am a permanent resident of the US.

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