Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Temperament vs. Temperamental
There you have it.... Hillary Clinton's latest bi-polar performance in last night's 20th Democratic presidential debate, the third one-on-one between her and Barack Obama. (Cartoon by Steve Brodner of The New Yorker)
Most of us have already heard the policy positions, the back and forth of their differences with only an occasional surprise. What the MSNBC-sponsored debate did highlight last night was the difference in temperament between the two candidates.
Hillary whined at the git go that she always got the first question and tried a lame one-liner "Maybe we should ask Barack if he's comfortable and needs another pillow." Her nasty humor fell flat and she never really found her debate face.
It was Temperamental Hillary who showed up last night.... flushed face, smoldering dagger-looks and false cackle. At any moment she could have burst into flames.
No matter how many ways.... her kitchen sink strategy.... she tries to remake herself or falsely frame Obama, nothing is working.
Hillary leads in opinion polls until she actually shows up in a state to campaign. Then as voters are subjected to I'm-a-woman-vote-for-me and "35 years of experience".... years most know are merely coattail rides.... she starts to fade like an over-exposed negative.
Maureed Dowd perfectly captures Hillary's dilemma in "Begrudging His Bedazzling" (WaPo) by pointing out, "The fact that Obama is exceptionally easy in his skin has made Hillary almost jump out of hers. She can't turn on her own charm and wit because she can't get beyond what she sees as the deep injustice of Obama not waiting his turn."
And, while not waiting his turn, Obama's temperament last night was pitch perfect.... calm, confident, commanding.... presidential.
Hillary's campaign has fallen down and can't get up.... or, as Obama points out, get away from the Iraq bus she drove into the ditch.