On this last day of campaigning before the Texas primary, I listened to Hillary Clinton’s speech in a high school in Ohio. Telling was the fact that it wasn’t a packed house. The commentator on NPR noted that many rows of seats were empty. That may be a telling sign. More telling was the tone of her voice.
I can’t mince words, she sounded shrill. I know that is the term used by people who want to use a veiled reference to a woman being the “B” word, but I can’t think of any other term. Her speech was filled with attacks on Obama and she made the statement that she wasn’t going to give people big ideas, but real solutions.
That is a mistake lots of Democrats make and it’s the way we Democrats have been losing national elections for the past few years. Democratic candidates come up with laundry lists of problems and programs, lots of facts and figures and the general public’s eyes glaze over. The sad truth is that people end up voting by their gut and their heart not their mind. It’s not a bad way to vote, since a President cannot make laws but only influence the lawmaking bodies of the Senate and House. To do that you have to be able to inspire people into action.
I will not dispute that our party has had good candidates in the past, but they concentrated on details that most voters couldn’t or wouldn’t understand instead of inspiring confidence in their abilities to lead and motivate people. In the past, the great presidents could do that. Alsop some not so great presidents got into office simply because they were likable and seemed like good folks. Either way, the winners tended to be candidates who people liked and I feel the stakes are so high this election that we as Democrats must win. To try to fall back on the old laundry list strategy will not work. It hasn’t worked in the past.
It is time we had a clear voice for the Democratic Party who can inspire and motivate people because in the end it is that motivation that will not only win the election but influence congress as well. For me, Barack Obama is that voice and I urge my fellow Texans to vote for him in the primary so we can have a Democrat in the White House in November.