Thursday, January 31, 2008

Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton in California: Testament to America's Future

What a pleasure it was to see Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton in the one-on-one Democratic debate in California on CNN tonight.

Who would have predicted even a few years ago that the final candidates for the Democratic Presidential nomination in 2008 would be an African American and a woman - two groups marginalized, discrimated against, and worse throughout America's history.

Seeing Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton up there on the stage, knowing that one of them will be the Democratic nominee for President, would have been inspiring enough in itself.

But the ensuing debate was a pleasure to watch, a rational discussion between two highly intelligent, compassionate, and articulate people.

Hillary, as always, had some superb lines - my favorite being that it took a Clinton to clean up after the first Bush, and it will take a Clinton to clean up after the second Bush.

Obama's wit shown through, too - my favorite of his jibes being that McCain's "straight talk express" somewhere lost some of its wheels.

The best moments of the debate, in other words - and there were many - came when Obama and Clinton attacked not each other, but the Republicans.

Not that this debate was a lovefest. I think Obama made some powerful arguments about being right, from the very beginning, about not going into Iraq.

In the end, I think it does come to Obama being more original and inspiring in his thinking and vision. But Hillary Clinton has brought a lot to this campaign, too.

Wolf Blitzer's last question was about the possibility of an Obama-Clinton and a Clinton-Obama ticket. Both candidates said it was too early (of course) to speak of such things, but neither seemed averse to the idea.

I could happily support either ticket, with Obama-Clinton my first choice.
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