If anybody is interested in a thoughtful reply I would be interested in hearing from Obama supporters. I don’t want to get into arguments or attacks or listen to people demonize the Clintons or refer to “Hillary” as “Billary”. But I am interested in a thoughtful discussion, if anybody else is similarly inclined!
Here are some of the things that still have me supporting Clinton rather than Obama:
(1) The issue of greatest concern to me is health care and health insurance for everybody. I honestly believe that the only way of achieving this is for universally-mandated health insurance. If everybody is not in the pool, most economists agree that the system would not be affordable for all. There would be insurance company cherry-picking, and huge costs associated with providing emergency care for the remaining uninsured – like there is now. I just happen to agree with both Clinton and Edwards that this is something really needing “shared responsibility” on the part of all citizens. I think it is a matter of legitimate disagreement with Obama, who is not as progressive on this issue as Clinton is.
(2) Obama portrays himself as being on a “higher moral plane” than the other candidates. But I’ve seen some of his tactics over the last few weeks and I have to say he seems just like any other politician in wiggling around his past positions and throwing out attacks (for example, the “Walmart director” jab at the S.C. debate, or failing to denounce the Spanish-language radio ads in Nevada). Yes, I think the Clinton campaign unfairly twisted what Obama was saying about Reagan and his “ideas”. I disagree with Clinton’s tactics there. But I also think Obama has unfairly demonized the Clintons and has failed to give credit to the previous Clinton administration for all its good ideas. By demonizing the Clintons and ignoring the good things done in the 1990s, I think Obama is buying into the Republican arguments of the past, and that bothers me.
(3) I don’t really understand the “Change” message of Obama’s campaign. Hasn’t Hillary Clinton also worked for, and achieved, a lot of positive change over the last 35 years? Hasn’t she also shown that she can work across the aisle with Republicans in the Senate and in upstate New York? Doesn’t Obama have a message that doesn’t involve demonizing Hillary?
Like I said, this is not an “attack” message. I think Senator Obama is a fine candidate. I myself would like to see a Clinton Obama or Obama Clinton ticket if they could work past their antagonistic history.
But I do still have reservations about Obama.