13 March 2008

Wrong, Mr Carney!

In today's Political Diary, a publication of the Wall Street Journal, one Brian Carney writes:
...if Mr. Spitzer is indicted -- or if a debate catches fire in the media over prostitution, misogyny and related gender concerns. This is touchy territory for Mrs. Clinton, given her own husband's philandering. A Monica-esque debate about powerful older men and vulnerable young women would hardly be a convenient subject right now for the Clinton campaign. Mrs. Clinton may have airbrushed the New York Governor from her campaign site, but with at least two debates coming up before the crucial Pennsylvania primary, Mrs. Clinton will be lucky if she doesn't have to offer a more elaborate denunciation of Mr. Spitzer's actions.
I completely disagree. The Spitzer debacle could actually be very good for Hillary Rodham Clinton.

in a difficult election, one of the emotions that can benefit a politician is sympathy. Barack Obama, as a black man, has benefited from such sympathy. (In that, Geraldine Ferrero is correct.) Hillary Clinton, with her tearful response to a question in New Hampshire, but also in her election to the Senate in the first place has also been a recipient of such sympathy. She may well yet be again.

Imagine the debate where Senator Obama is asked to repudiate Reverend Jeremiah Wright's statements which some regard as hate speech. In order to balance the questions, Hillary is then asked about her former New York campaign operative, former Governor Eliot Spitzer. Hillary will answer,
Well, as everyone knows, I have some personal experience with the kind of pain that is caused in a family when infidelity is disclosed [camera shot of Bill looking lovingly at Hillary], and even more so when it is disclosed publicly. So I will say very simply that I reject former Governor Spitzer's behavior, which he himself acknowledged was immoral, and I sympathize with his family and pray for healing for all of them.
That will coax more sympathy votes out of the voters of Pennsylvania than almost anything else that could happen.

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