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The statement I want Bill Clinton to make about his Jesse Jackson comment

vastleft's picture

My comment about Jesse Jackson after Senator Obama's impressive win in South Carolina was an act of very poor sportsmanship, and I apologize for it. Suggesting that his victory was due to the demographics of South Carolina, and not Senator Obama's genuine and well-earned appeal across the state, was inappropriate and uncalled for. I apologize for that sincerely and unreservedly. My apologies go to Senator Obama, Rev. Jackson, and the good people of South Carolina.

Beyond what I had intended by the comment, which people have fairly criticized, is an unfair outcome, as well. Some are using it to amp up the wholly unwarranted and deeply corrosive mischaracterizations of my and Hillary's statements and beliefs about race.

A lot of people in the media have had a field day injecting false narratives about the important and sensitive topic of race into perhaps the most important election in America's history, distracting from the issues that all three Democratic candidates are dedicated to working on. This use of race as a sensationalistic novelty demeans everyone who seeks honest and constructive dialog about and healing for the still-fresh wounds of racial discrimination.

Those who want to nullify Hillary's and my lifelong dedication to civil rights may seize on this to validate these mischaracterizations. But Hillary and I have learned, like few others have, to trust in the goodness and fairness of the American people.

The 2006 election shows that Americans are ready to move past the failed policies of the Bush administration, policies that have been especially hard on minorities and the poor, and I am proud to be supporting a candidate who is dedicating to and uniquely capable of taking the country in a new and better direction.

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Submitted by [Please enter a... (not verified) on

Honestly, that's how they're coming across. Although I think they've largely been unfairly smeared, this last statement is clearly racial. Bill had done so well too, in light of all the previously false charges (My God, the man was called Lee Atwater and still he handled it with grace).

After apologizing, what Bill needs to do is become a supportive spouse and focus on celebrating Senator Clinton's strengths; he should leave the contrasting and attacking to HRC or her staffers.

Submitted by lambert on

That's the layered architecture.

Bill should float above it all. Surely they have surrogates to do the attacking, like Obama does?

[x] Any (D) in the general. [ ] Any mullah-sucking billionaire-teabagging torture-loving pus-encrusted spawn of Cthulhu, bless his (R) heart.

Submitted by [Please enter a... (not verified) on

...that somebody will claim he just called Obama a "sensationalistic novelty" whining about media coverage isn't going to get them better media coverage.

Bill should go back to talking about Hillary as the smartest person he's ever known and leave the distortions and lies to designated assholes. The Democratic party doesn't want Bill Clinton living up to Republican wet dreams even if it gives Hillary
her best chance at winning the nomination.

Submitted by [Please enter a... (not verified) on

He's the unity pony remember? But despite the snark he sure as hell isn't going to send Michelle out to be the hatchet man. It's twice as unseemly to have Hillary's spouse and ex-president of the US trying to downplay black votes AND talking as if he's the candidate. Shit Hillary was on TV chalking up Bill's craziness to lack of sleep on the trail.

Speaking of unity this ought to blow your mind. From TPM, the Hillary campaign's talking points on Bill's "forget it boys, Jesse won here too" fuckup:



Wasn’t former President Bill Clinton playing the race card when he sought to downplay Barack Obama’s victory in South Carolina by comparing him to Jesse Jackson?

* No.

* Look, President Bill Clinton has spent his entire public and private life repairing the breach in this country.

* Both his Presidency and his post-presidency career have focused on unity, not division.

* So I reject the premise of the question.

* We need to focus on the challenges facing this country – the state of our economy, the continuing war in Iraq, the need for universal health care.

* And those challenges require a President who can come to the office ready to lead on day one, Hillary Clinton"

leah's picture
Submitted by leah on

I think that's what he needs to do, although it won't change the dynamic that has been set up - it's the nineties all over again, the war on the Clintons, which became the war on Gore, and the war on Kerry, and started off decades ago as the war on liberalism, and all that it entails, which is pretty much every founding principle of this country.

I don't think there's much of a chance that either Clinton can change that dynamic, and that makes me think she has less of a chance to win the Nov election than does Obama, and even if she pulled it out, the war would dog her governance, in the same way it dogged her husband's.

God, I wish she hadn't run, and it hurts to say that, because I think she's definitely shown that a woman can compete on the presidential level; Shirley Chisholm showed some it too, but it was too easy to marginalize her. So, maybe it's okay that she ran, I think she's created an opening for all woman now, because nobody doesn't recognize that she's been a formidable candidate.

Submitted by lambert on

Why would anybody think they can't do the same thing to Obama? How long did it take to demonize the Clintons? I'd say they started from day 1, and it took a year. So they have the means and the time to do the same to Obama.

If the way the right was slimed the Clintons is their greatest, perhaps their only, strength, why not be Rovian and go right at it?

[x] Any (D) in the general. [ ] Any mullah-sucking billionaire-teabagging torture-loving pus-encrusted spawn of Cthulhu, bless his (R) heart.

vastleft's picture
Submitted by vastleft on

I'm tempted to say "Manchurian Democrat," but that flies a little close to the flame of those unfounded rumors that Obama might -- perish the thought! -- not be a Christian. We can all breathe a sigh of relief that Obama is, in fact, the sensible sort that believes in the virgin birth, heavenly ascendancy, and the Rapture, so let's not stir that particular hornet's nest.

Perhaps Obama will make actually good on all his GOP dogwhistling and thus be protected by a bubble of goodwill from his Conservative overlords.

Then again, it might turn out that the Republicans and the Beltway media folk are not gentlemen, after all, and he (and us who may have to rely upon him) will stop citing "The Emperor's News Clothes" and instead begin tirelessly retelling "The Scorpion and the Frog" to anyone who might listen.

Submitted by lambert on

"It's my nature..."

[x] Any (D) in the general. [ ] Any mullah-sucking billionaire-teabagging torture-loving pus-encrusted spawn of Cthulhu, bless his (R) heart.

Submitted by [Please enter a... (not verified) on

Women will be standing on Hillary's shoulders for decades if not centuries to come. There's no doubt about that. Will she ever president? I don't know but
as the first woman candidate to get this far she's already opened the door for others.

vastleft, there's no dogwhistle about Obama's appeal at all. He directly and clearly asks for everybody's votes. And looking at the fuckwit candidates on the Republican side a lot of Republicans and indies will vote for him. We're all getting crushed by healthcare costs and energy prices. Almost 70% of the public wants out of Iraq. Lot of two time Bush voters in that number who can't stand dirty hippies like you, me and Hillary (let alone her free love husband) that nonetheless will pick Obama over "war without end" McCain or Mittens Romney.

vastleft's picture
Submitted by vastleft on

If — after months of Correntewire's detailed analysis of Obama's embrace of humping of making dirty, nasty love to right-wing frames while dogwhistling a happy tune — if you don't see it, I must channel Laura Petrie, who once said "If you don't care enough to know, I'm not going to tell you."

Submitted by lambert on

Not only smearing Bill Clinton from a smarmy posture of assumed superiority, but as a "free love husband"--which I don't think even the most fervent of the blow job investigators called him.

'Cause trashing "free love" is just so much a part of that anti-60s kulturkampf I thought we were going to ride away from on the back of the Unity Pony.*

What are you, one of those Conservatives who hated Clinton because they couldn't get laid in college?

NOTE * Oops, sorry. I keep forgetting that Unity doesn't apply to dirty fucking hippies. My bad.

[x] Any (D) in the general. [ ] Any mullah-sucking billionaire-teabagging torture-loving pus-encrusted spawn of Cthulhu, bless his (R) heart.

Submitted by [Please enter a... (not verified) on

The Republican party would love nothing better than running against the Clintons and ginning up the culture war again. To the old arguments they'll add the foreign investments from Dubai to China Billary's been dumping over the last couple of years and the papers still locked up in the Clinton Fort Knox Library. Try getting low info indies to turn out when Repubs are shouting about that. Try getting kids and AA's to make up the difference for Hillary after the way they've been treated.

Heaven forfend I should ever point that out. You call yourself a progressive yet the candidate you're defending has Terry McAuliffe as campaign manager and Mark Penn as one of it's top staffers. That's some company.

Obama's got none of that baggage and if Repubs try to smear him he not only has a great rapid response team the candidate himself will turn those smears to his advantage. The American people are ready to reject the politics of division and the past. They'll vote Democratic if we nominate a candidate who doesn't represent the politics of division and the past.

Your qualms about Obama's liberal bonafides are misplaced. You only need to look at what he's done with his life to know that.

Submitted by lambert on

"Do you think you can wish that away?" is a question that's so, so typical of them.

I mean, what answer can one possibly give? How about, "Yes, I am stupid," or "Of course, wishes make dreams come true," or "No, I am not insane," or "No, I don't believe in supernatural beings," or "No, I don't believe in the Unity Pony."

I'm figuring, from the time differential, that the warehouse where Axelrod's stashed the OFB has a shift change at 8:00 and they're on PST time.

[x] Any (D) in the general. [ ] Any mullah-sucking billionaire-teabagging torture-loving pus-encrusted spawn of Cthulhu, bless his (R) heart.

vastleft's picture
Submitted by vastleft on

Obama rulez, because he's been able to leverage hoary rightwing Clinton hate and to paint the former First Lady and former President as racists.