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Old August 27th, 2008, 08:44 AM   #1
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Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow, Fair Hillary

With the eyes of her Party, the nation and history upon her, Senator Hillary Clinton left no doubt Tuesday night that though beaten she is far from broken. Addressing the Democratic National Convention in Denver, Senator Clinton alternately inspired the partisan faithful with her eloquence after fueling them with her fiery passion. In the end, she delivered what is possibly the most memorable and forceful performance of her political career.

Leaving nothing to chance or misinterpretation, Clinton went straightaway to unequivocally endorsing the Party’s nominee, stating, “I am honored to be here tonight. A proud mother. A proud Democrat. A proud American. And a proud supporter of Barack Obama.”

This was followed by a litany of the Senator’s decades-long efforts on health care and children’s issues; moments that moved and inspired her on the campaign trail; a brief defense of her husband’s economic record and red meat for a partisan crowd eager to launch the fall offensive against their Republican rivals.

Leveling blistering partisan fire at Republican nominee John McCain, Clinton said, “….You haven't worked so hard over the last 18 months, or endured the last eight years, to suffer through more failed leadership. No way. No how. No McCain.” Seeking to hang the albatross of President Bush’s historic low public approval ratings around the Republican’s neck, she added, “….It makes sense that George Bush and John McCain will be together next week in the Twin Cities. Because these days they're awfully hard to tell apart.”

Over the course of her remarks, Clinton displayed an indomitable will tempered by a grace and poise that was often missing on the campaign trail over the course of the primary season. One wonders what might have been if she had been so eloquently forceful and sharply focused in her campaign as she was in its coda last night.

Weaving her campaign into the greater tapestry of American history, the Senator carried the audience back to the women’s suffrage movement and the Underground Railroad; both symbols of America’s struggles to perfect herself and establish equality for all of her children.

Noting that her mother is one of those dwindling gray angels born before women were granted the franchise, she then beamed with pride that her daughter had been able to vote for her mother for president; a mere 88 years after passage of the 19th Amendment guaranteeing women’s right to vote.

Unfolding the tapestry farther, Clinton implored the Party faithful to follow the advice of the Underground Railroad activist Harriet Tubman, insisting, “Don't ever stop. Keep going. If you want a taste of freedom, keep going “ Riding on the cresting wave of emotions, she urged, “But remember, before we can keep going, we have to get going by electing Barack Obama president. We don't have a moment to lose or a vote to spare.”

Having bookended her remarks with endorsements of Senator Obama, Clinton sought to bridge the chasm left from the contentious primary campaign between the camps of the two former rivals. In addition to espousing the Party unity so highly prized by the Obama camp, the Senator also looked to cement the impression that she placed Party loyalty and success ahead of ego. In doing so, she insures her future political viability; whatever the future may bring.

Though making the argument that Obama was the presidential nominee best suited to address the issues of importance to herself and her supporters, Senator Clinton did nothing to allay concerns over his qualifications for Commander-In-Chief; which she herself mercilessly assailed him over during the primaries. Accordingly, the Obama campaign and political observers will be watching closely this evening to see if former President Bill Clinton attests to the Senator’s preparedness to answer the ominous 3am call of his wife’s campaign commercial.

In the wake of Senator Clinton’s speech, there are several among the Republican ranks breathing a sigh of relief that they face the currently staggering Obama and not the resurgent and confidant powerhouse that commanded the spotlight Tuesday night. As the Democratic faithful filed out of the Pepsi Center into the Rocky Mountain night, many were left wondering if perhaps they had unwittingly sacrificed a legend-bound political warrior for a demurring poet and philosopher.

Parting is such sweet sorrow, faithful readers, as fair Hillary says good night till it be morrow. Stay tuned for further updates as events warrant and the lingering doubts haunt the coming campaign’s tortuous track.
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