Monday, February 4, 2008

The vote looms

We're a day away from Super Tuesday. God dammit, I need more time!

'Cause here's where I am right now: I've publicly agreed to support Barack Obama, who I believe is a great choice, but I keep secretly rooting for Hillary Clinton, who I also believe would be a great choice, albeit for very different reasons.

I saw people standing at the corner of a busy intersection in Albany this weekend holding Hillary signs, and I admit that I felt emotional. These were people standing out in the misty cold for a viable female candidate, and that's never before been possible in my lifetime. Or anyone else's.

And then I saw this video about Barack Obama, and it gave me chills. Truthfully, I get chills nearly every time I see coverage of Obama making a speech. Not usually because of his actual speech, but because of the crowds' reactions to his speeches. I can't say that he totally lights my fire, but the fact that he lights so many other fires is certainly inspirational.

Is it possible to be inspired transitively? 'Cause if so, I'd like to express my feelings about Barack Obama as a logical equation: If I am inspired by people's excitement to engage in the democratic process, and Barack Obama makes truckloads of people get excited about engaging in the democratic process, then I am inspired by Barack Obama.

But here's the thing. Even though there are things about her that make me cringe, I am directly inspired by Hillary Clinton. I don't think there's anyone smarter in the race. Maybe even in the party. She is damn near unflappable. She can play the game with the best of the boys (I'm not necessarily interested in someone who plays that game, but I still admire that she can do it so well). She's been smeared more than any woman in American history, but she refuses to give up, and a day before Super Tuesday she leads the polls and the delegate count for the Democratic nomination. I just can't help but be inspired by that.

But can she win against John McCain? I'm not so sure. I think she could if Obama were on the ticket with her, but I'm not sure he would accept that offer. I think Obama would be able to beat McCain with a few different people as his VP, which ups his stock with me. But I don't know that he would put Hillary on the ticket (even though I believe she deserves to be there in some capacity), and I don't want to miss an opportunity to vote for a well-qualified female candidate. Who knows when it will happen again (not saying that there won't be a well-qualified female, just that it's not easy to squeeze through the process like Hillary has)?

So, dear readers, what do I do with all this? I have a day to figure it out. Any advice out there?


aliqot said...

I wouldn't dream of advising. In any case, I'm not even American, but the vote in your country sure as hell affects the rest of us, particularly in the UK. Your 53rd (?) state, though we don't get to vote there.

It sometimes looks to me as though the selction process manages to divide people more than unite them, and this time is particularly interesting/ difficult.

Why, oh why, can Clinton and Obama not combine? Or at least avoid slagging each other off.

I watch from a distance.


EBuz said...

I have no advice either. Your post is just a more articulate version of my own ambiguous inner dialog.

I will say, though, that I'm just glad I'm not the only one questioning her commitment to your "trust Iowa" theory. :)

Amy said...

I have also been thinking a lot about my personal Clinton/Obama dilemma and I realized I always seem to root for Sen. Clinton at the end of the day. As such, I have decided that when I caucus tomorrow night, I will do so with 50% brain, 50% heart, and 100% uterus.

Gender Blank said...

Y'all are no help at all! But I'm glad I'm not alone in this.

Amy and EBuz, good luck tomorrow!

Alison, we'll do our best!

Anonymous said...

I hear that Obama would rather be governor of Illinois than VP. It will certainly be interesting.