A site of satirical musings, commentary and/or rhetorical criticism of the world at large.

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Location: Southeastern, Pennsylvania, United States

Friday, August 29, 2008

The Democrats and the Hillicans

A milestone in American history was achieved this week when Barack Obama became the first African American to be nominated for President from a major political party. The great moment came at the Democratic National Convention in Denver after a roll call vote morphed into an acclamation from Obama’s former rival, Senator Hillary Clinton. Aside from the historical significance of this convention, we can also take a civics lesson from these events.

For example, we now know that a roll call vote is a tedious exercise of democracy in which each state proudly proclaims their uniqueness in the union before they declare their support for one of the nominated candidates. Apparently an acclamation is when somebody gets tired of the roll call vote and proclaims that all of the remaining votes should be cast for the nominee in the lead at that point. It’s a nice way of saying, “Look, we can all see where this is going. Let’s get it over with and get the hell out of here so we can PAR-TAY!”

The media speculated endlessly about what Hillary would do at the convention. Would she rally her supporters behind her in a last ditch effort to become the first woman in the White House? Or would she put the interests of the party and the country first, step aside, and wholeheartedly endorse Obama? Nobly, Senator Clinton stepped aside, sensing that any conflict would be counter-productive for the Democrats at this point. She also probably realized that she didn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of getting elected. Her acclamation may have been good for the party, but it greatly reduced the amount of drama that the television commentators could wring out of the convention.

Please don’t get me wrong: I admire Senator Clinton for all the work she has done in public life. Unfortunately, she does not have a warm and fuzzy reputation preceding her. Thanks to the Rush Limbaughs, the Newt Gingriches, and the Jerry Falwells of the world, Mrs. Clinton has seen her chance to become the first female President of the United States utterly destroyed. Simply put, many people hate her guts, and regardless if these feelings are unwarranted or not, it still makes her un-electable. Now the speculation will focus on her supporters: will they fall in line behind her or protest and not support Obama by either staying home or voting for McCain. I don’t know what special cutesy label the media will put on them, but I think I will call them Hillicans. The name derives from the first five letters of Senator Clinton’s first name, while the last three letters come from the end of the name of the political party which will benefit the most from their stubborn refusal to support the Democrats choice.

Once the Democrats finish their business, the Republicans will have their turn on the national media stage. They’ll be meeting in St. Paul, a nice middle of the country destination unaffected by the elitists on the east coast, and the arguably laid back denizens of the west coast. It’s a shame that they didn’t choose New Orleans for their convention. Then delegates of the Republican Party could see first hand the wonderful job that one of their own has done to rebuild this city after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. (That last sentence is either drenched in sarcasm and dripping in irony, or drenched in irony and dripping with sarcasm. I can’t make up my mind.) With another hurricane (Gustav) possibly headed for Nawlens by early next week, the Republicans will have a tough time living down the Bush administration's mistakes and convincing the country that they are the ones that can move the country forward.


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