If I Were Writing Hillary Clinton’s Stump Speech…Posted: March 6, 2008
I don’t think it serves Hillary well to continue to throw the kitchen sink (as people are putting it) at Obama. It makes her look bad. And, in laying a foundation of doubt in voters’ minds about him (re NAFTA, Rezko, 3 A.M. phone calls, etc.), she has already done what she needed to do. At this point, if I were she, this is what I’d say:
“My opponent, Barack Obama, is an honorable public servant—and a politician. I, too, am an honorable public servant—and a politician. As honorable public servants, we have both done good things. As politicians, we have both had to make compromises we wish we hadn’t made. Neither one of us is perfect—any more perfect than any of you.
“Therefore, don’t judge either of us in comparison to a standard of perfection. You won’t find either one of us coming close. You won’t find me coming closer than my opponent to being an angel, nor will you find him coming closer to being an angel than me. We are both good, imperfect people, making the best decisions we can and doing the best we can for you, as we see it.
“That is all I ask you to keep in mind when you compare us. If you can put it out of your mind that this is a race between a messiah and an ordinary mortal, a race between someone capable of magic and someone capable of mere earthly deeds, and compare us instead on a level playing field of human strength and weakness, as we deserve to be compared, then I am satisfied to be judged on our other, real, differences. If you find my opponent’s policies better than mine, vote for him, and if the opposite, vote for me. If you judge him better able than I to carry out the responsibilities of the job, and to accomplish an agenda, then vote for him, and if your judgment is the opposite, then vote for me. I cannot ask for a fairer test than that. But I can insist on a test that meets this level of fairness. For to compare us as two entirely different animals—one divine, and one earthly—is not only to provide an unfair obstacle to me, it is to invite sure disappointment for you. Thank you, and God bless America.”