They Don’t Want Hillary

This is an entire letter to the editor or editorial from TBO.com

Dear Hillary:

We’d like to welcome you to Tampa for your fundraiser today, and thank you for your long service to our country and your party.

We expect that after your re-election this fall as junior senator from New York, you will dedicate yourself to seeking a higher office. But you’re a pragmatist, Hillary, so we urge you to be satisfied with the Senate.

If you run for president, chances are good that you’ll secure your party’s nomination. But realistically, how do you think you can win the White House? You are the most polarizing figure in the Democratic Party, and your negatives among likely voters are prohibitively high. Many people simply don’t trust you. You may share your husband’s name, but what people liked about him is not transferable to you.

You are not the person to help define a party that needs to convince voters it can govern from the vital center.

Even yellow dog Florida Democrats express profound reservations about your presidential ambitions. They worry that you cannot attract moderate and independent voters and that your presence will hurt the election chances of other Democratic candidates up and down the ballot.

They fear, Hillary, that you would doom Democrats to impotence for decades. Republicans might relish that prospect, but on reflection, they would acknowledge the importance of a strong two-party political system. Should the Democratic Party be crippled, the Republican Party is likely to become complacent, uninspired and unaccountable.

Fair or not, you are identified with the far left, and you are not the person to convince voters that Democrats have ideas for keeping families safe and the country secure.

You are not the one who can assure Americans they will have a chance to get ahead.

You may be a champion for women’s rights and a strong advocate for children, but you are too much the Washington insider to convince voters you would fix a political system that seems remote from everyday life.

If you run, you’ll position yourself from the center, knowing full well that even if you alienate your base, they’ll support you, because they have no one else to turn to.

But even if you moderate your positions, you do so at some political risk. When you suddenly support a constitutional amendment to ban flag-burning, your changing position seems superficial and self-serving. Hillary the “moderate progressive” candidate would be a hard sell.

Although you apparently work well with your Senate colleagues, your candidacy would remind voters that you are not a consensus builder. Your health care plan failed during your husband’s first term because you were largely tone-deaf. You shut people out, and when things went awry, you blamed the media.

By the time George Bush leaves office in 2009, this country will have had 20 years with either a Bush or Clinton at the helm. Citizens want a break from that White House tradition.

Think, Hillary, not about what you want, but what’s best for your party and country.

Please, don’t run.

That about says it all



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