Hillary In Command

Update: We did not realize how pedestrian our title was. We assure you the title Hillary In Command was thought up in isolation, not having seen other websites, Big Blogs or Big Media articles. However, checking out reviews of the second Democratic Party debate we discovered that we are being repetitive. The Hillary campaign did some work for us all by posting some reviews of how Hillary amazed even her fans. Prepare yourselves for another severe outbreak of EHS:

TIME MAGAZINE’S MARK HALPERIN NAMES HILLARY THE WINNER — ‘BOTTOM LINE: CAME IN THE FRONT-RUNNER AND LEAVES IN A STRONGER POSITION’: “Able to look commanding and presidential even as she fielded niggling, hoary questions that bordered on the absurd. Never lost her temper, her focus or her cool, and even dispatched a crowd-pleasing Dick Cheney zinger. Occasionally lapsed into the weary defensiveness she displayed during the health care wars of ’93 and various subsequent Clinton sagas. Bottom line: came in the front-runner and leaves in a stronger position.” [Time, 6/04/07]

ABC NEWS’ GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS — ‘SHE CAME IN THE FRONTRUNNER. SHE LEFT THE FRONTRUNNER’: “Listen, Hillary Clinton went into the debate last night as a frontrunner. Look at our poll. She was ahead 42%, Barack Obama 27%, John Edwards 11%. She came in the frontrunner. She left the frontrunner… the strongest best moment of the night belonged to Hillary Clinton when she was asked do you agree with John Edwards when he says the war on terror is just a bumper sticker.” [Good Morning America, 6/04/07]

AP ANALYSIS — HILLARY ‘PROJECTED AN AIR OF CONFIDENCE AND A MASTERY OF THE SUBJECT MATTER’: “With a new Washington Post/ABC News poll showing Clinton far ahead of her rivals nationally, the former first lady projected an air of confidence and a mastery of the subject matter at Sunday’s forum. She also insisted Democrats should focus their policy critiques on Republicans, especially President George W. Bush.” [AP, 6/4/07]

THE ATLANTIC’S ANDREW SULLIVAN — ‘SHE WINS THIS ONE. IT KILLS ME TO ADMIT IT. BUT THERE YOU ARE’: “In general, Senator Clinton bestrode the debate as an authoritative figure. In fact, I’ve never witnessed a U.S. political debate in which a woman clearly dominated as she did tonight… Still: she wins this one. It kills me to admit it. But there you are.” [The Atlantic, 6/03/07]

WMUR FOCUS GROUP — ‘FOCUS GROUP RESPONDENTS… FELT EVEN MORE STRONGLY ABOUT HER AFTERWARD, INCREASING HER RATINGS BY TWENTY-ONE POINTS’: “Focus group respondents viewed Clinton favorably prior to the debate and felt even more strongly about her afterward, increasing her ratings by twenty-one points. Interestingly, there was not a gender gap in the response. Both men and women evaluated Clinton similarly and both groups proportionately increased their favorable evaluations of her.” [WMUR Focus Group, 6/04/07]

WBZ-TV’S JON KELLER — ‘HILLARY CLINTON IN COMMAND’: “Hillary Clinton in command. She was crisp, well informed, and showed more anti-terrorist passion than the rest. That’s all good news for Sen. Clinton.” [WBZ-TV, 6/03/07]

CNN’S CANDY CROWLEY — ‘THIS IS HILLARY CLINTON’S VENUE’: “I think that this is Hillary Clinton’s venue. She has done very well in both debates. She has facts at her fingertips. She is sort of calm, answers the questions. She does very well. This clearly is her forum.” [CNN, 6/04/07]

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES’ JENNIFER HUNTER — HILLARY ‘FORCEFUL AND DETAILED:’ “But Sunday’s debate at St. Anselm College among the eight Democratic presidential contenders did not define a clear winner — although Clinton’s deep well of political experience was apparent and will likely keep her ahead in the polls. She was forceful and detailed in her answers.” [Chicago Sun-Times, 6/4/07]

BOSTON GLOBE — HILLARY ‘SHOWED LEADERSHIP:’ “On style points, all generally acquitted themselves well. Clinton showed leadership by resisting the moderator’s clumsy attempt to force the candidates to give instant yea-or-nay answers on complex issues like ending the genocide in Darfur.” [Boston Globe, 6/4/07]

ABC’s THE NOTE — ‘IT WAS CLINTON’S NIGHT. NO CANDIDATE LOOKED MORE PRESIDENTIAL’: “The consensus opinion: It was Clinton’s night. No candidate looked more presidential — despite (or because of) Edwards’ attacks — and the stage seemed to tip in her direction when she defended the field against Wolf Blitzer’s (enemy of enemies!) toughest queries.” [ABC News’ The Note, 6/04/07]

CONGRESSIONAL QUARTERLY’S CRAIG CRAWFORD — ‘CLINTON DID MORE THAN HOLD HER OWN… SHE WON’: “But Clinton did more than hold her own in the face-off aired by CNN. She won. Due in part to her commanding center placing on the stage among eight contenders, the New York Democrat came across as the boss.” [Congressional Quarterly’s Trail Mix, 6/04/07]

ABC NEWS — CLINTON PLAYED ‘ON A HIGHER PLANE’: “Clinton, meanwhile, was practically playing on a different, higher plane befitting a front-runner while pitching herself as the toughest candidate when it comes to national security.” [ABC News, 6/03/07]

While we await the transcript of the debate let’s quickly consider last night’s second Democratic Party debate.

Hillary Clinton was figuratively and literally in the center of the stage. Maybe it was because she wore a sun-yellow blouse but Hillary appeared to be the star around which particularly small asteroids circled in worship.

Obama continued his string of bad performances with a long string of long sentences strung together with many adjectives which contained nary a thought. Obama talked the most and said the least. Obama’s lurching performance at times was laughable.

Edwards was in eclipse. At least he has figured out he must wake his campaign from the lethargy it has fallen into. Edwards attacked but his attacks were ineffective. He did look good though.

Wolf Blitzer was eclipsed as well. Hillary was so in command she began moderating the debate. Hillary came to the rescue of all her asteroids when she objected to hypothetical questions.

Our favorite Hillary moment was her takedown of Condi Rice flying around the world and giving speeches but getting nothing done. She followed that with her smackdown of Cheney.

Hillary was also particularly strong on her answers to “gays in the military”. She pointed out how the present policy makes firing gay arabic language speakers who work in the military possible. Hillary slyly quoted the icon of the Republican Right, Barry Goldwater, to attack the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy. When challenged on why President Bill Clinton instituted that policy Hillary noted the anti-gay climate in the military and in the U.S. Senate at the time. Hillary then appropriately stated that “don’t ask, don’t tell” was “an important first step.” Hillary said it was “a transition policy.”

On the Iraq war Hillary was Commander In Chief of the Democratic Debate. When bickering broke out Hillary ended it by saying “The differences between us are minor. The differences between us and the Republicans are major.”

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3 thoughts on “Hillary In Command

  1. I went to a film the other night (“Once”) that I felt really didn’t add up to the critics praise. It was a fine film, but it just didn’t match the critics’ hype. I’m told by a friend who works at “Variety” that this is a trend: critics’ voices no longer affect box office as they once did. A panned film can make a lot of money and vice versa.
    Same seems to be true in politics. Obama’s now tied with Hillary, despite the good press she got on the debate. People just really like Obama’s image, despite Hillary’s better substance. It pains me to say this, but debates aren’t as important as they used to be. People are skeptical about politicians holding to their promises (for good reasons). With the Internet and blogs, folks come to their own conclusions on a much more democratic level than they used to with “guidance.”
    It’s good news for democracy, but requires a real rethinking of how to make your candidate more appealing (or the other guy less appealing). Wish I could be more helpful, ’cause I really think Hillary is hands down the best qualified. But I also am realistic about the “appeal factor” of Obama in this new environment.

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