Thursday, February 14, 2008

Love Notes

Love Notes

Just two quickies this AM:

  • Mike Huckabee is campaigning in... the Cayman Islands?
    Republican presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee on Wednesday defended his decision to suspend campaigning before Wisconsin's presidential primary so he can fly to the Cayman Islands to give a paid speech.

    He said he needs to make a living, and the event has been on his schedule for months.

  • Hillary Clinton agrees to an MSNBC debate despite the Pimping Chelsea Out Flap. Greg Sargent at Talking Points Memo: "However crude and dumb Shuster's remark was, this was never primarily about him. It was about Chris Matthews."

    A bunch of things -- as I've said, the guy's sensibilities are decidedly pre-feminist old school. But the big one is this Jan. 9 clip where Matthews said "the reason she's a US Senator, the reason she's a candidate for president, the reason she may be a fontrunner, is her husband messed around."

    I'm not going to play with that dynamite. But it does make one imagine an alternate universe.

    If Hillary Rodham had taken Bill Clinton's advice in 1973, dumped him, and put her own career first, would she be where she is today? Quite possibly.

    But what if the point of divergence is later on the timeline? Say Hillary follows the path she indeed chose, but Bill doesn't come back in 1982 after his 1980 re-election loss? He goes down in history as a boy wonder who failed, a two year asterisk, a mere footnote. Does she fade into obscurity too?

    Or does she take the lead role earlier? We could now be saying "did you know her husband was governor of Arkansas once? Yeah, when he was like 30. He got beat because he raised license plate fees."

    What if 1992 is a failure, and Bill loses to Paul Tsongas or Jerry Brown, or later to Bush 41? You can write a lot of scenarios. And it's pointless. On this timeline, in this reality, the two careers are entwined to the point of inseperable.

    The larger point is that the implication of Matthew's comment is that she's unqualified on her own merits, and that's part of what's offensive. The other offensive part is that Matthews doesn't seem to get that his comments about a "sympathy vote" imply her lack of qualification.
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