Saturday, May 24, 2008

Could She Be a June Bridesmaid?

Yesterday Hillary Clinton was defending her refusal to confront reality and drop out of the Democratic primary. She wondered why sane people were urging her to do so before June, “My husband did not wrap up the nomination in 1992 until he won the California primary somewhere in the middle of June, right?” she told the Sioux Falls Argus Leader. “We all remember Bobby Kennedy was assassinated in June in California. You know, I just, I don't understand it.”
Many people were upset by this comment because she clearly declared that her husband’s nomination was a tragedy on the scale of Bobby Kennedy being assassinated. Some reporters seem to think people were upset because they understood her to say, “if I’m lucky, Barack Obama will be shot” or perhaps they heard the actual coded message in her words which was “if you want me to win, someone, please, shoot Barack Obama.”
Perhaps she just meant to say, “You never know what might happen; fairy tales can come true”.
There may be less of a problem with what some people inferred from her comments than with what she implied with the examples she gave. Bill Clinton was not dodging sniper fire as he ran to safety in California in June: he had “effectively won the Democratic Party's nomination after winning the New York Primary in early April.” Or maybe as early as March.
Whether Kennedy’s nomination in 1968 was certain until stopped by an assassin’s bullet is less clear, but many people believe that “(Hubert) Humphrey was the likely nominee, and RFK's own campaign manager … wrote in his memoirs that Kennedy's chances of winning the nomination had been slim, even after his win in California.”
If Clinton dropped out and Obama subsequently died (no need to assume he is shot), Clinton would get the nomination anyway, so it is not an excuse for staying in the race. Does she, however need an excuse for what she said? She did, of course, express regret… that people were offended.
Perhaps when Hillary said, “You know, I just, I don't understand it.” she meant to say, “I just don’t get it.”
Perhaps she meant to say, “It’s not over until the fat lady** sings”:

“Does anybody here recall my husband’s primary?
Can you tell me what took so long?
He didn’t win until he won California
I think in June, but I could be wrong

Does anybody here recall Humphrey’s victory?
Can you tell me what took so long?
He won after Kennedy was shot in California
That day in June, but I could be wrong

Does anybody here recall my inevitability?
Can you tell me where it’s gone?
You think you saw it disappear with my comments.
I’ll turn it around, but I could be wrong.”

**If anyone took my reference to the “fat lady” to mean Hillary Clinton and if they see that in a negative way and if they are offended, I regret that.


Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
susan said...

So, what kind of comment did you remove?

JohnnyB said...

I may have made a mistake - it looked like spam at first.