In Service to the Party

Whether the Democrats get themselves back in shape by the end of their Denver convention isn’t easy to predict. Not only is John McCain polling evenly with Obama, the Democrat’s newly found party unity has yet to be put to the test. But one thing may be said with certainty: thanks to Hillary Clinton, the party is getting a fresh start in the race toward the White House.

Despite all the prophecies of doom, the formerly bitter Hillary has gotten solidly behind her youthful former opponent in Denver. With her clever and sophisticated convention speech, she left no doubt that the highest priority for all Democrats has to be winning the White House back. But nobody expected that she would praise Obama to high heaven. She portrayed Obama plainly as the embodiment of all her policies.

Hillary, who had previously so often blundered in her speeches, this time found the perfect measure and the right tone in the face of the rift that threatened to divide her party. Whoever expected any obstruction from her certainly showed they didn’t understand this politician’s ambition and energy. It must be assumed that Hilary still sees presidential possibilities for herself in 2012. That means she is still very interested in the good will of the Democratic Party and thus wants no part of being seen as complicit should Barack Obama fail to be elected.

Privately, she might have doubts about Obama’s qualifications, but she will do her utmost – and proclaim it loudly – to help her party achieve success. Her husband, ex-President Bill Clinton, who acted more like the spirit of discord than a father figure for the Democrats during the primaries, will now no doubt have to line up behind his wife. The Democratic Party has nothing to offer the man who already attained it all, but that’s a score that has to be settled between Bill and Hilary.

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