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» The Ornery American Forum » General Comments » Penn to step down as Clinton chief strategist

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Author Topic: Penn to step down as Clinton chief strategist
Member # 945

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Top Clinton campaigner demoted

Everything I've been seeing lately points to Clinton losing her bid for the nomination. So I'm not sure that this is all that important. However, I think it's interesting...the article contains indications of problems with Clinton's ability to lead/control her campaign, which I think is bad news for someone who wants to lead a country.


Last week, Penn acknowledged that while advising the campaign, he was working on behalf of a proposed trade pact with Colombia that labor unions fiercely oppose. Clinton, who has been courting union members, especially ahead of the April 22 Pennsylvania primary, has said she will vote against the treaty in the Senate.


"This goes to the bigger point that Hillary Clinton has been terribly ill-served by her campaign," said Peter Fenn, a longtime Democratic strategist. "She's a strong candidate. But I'm pretty appalled at what the campaign has done."


For months, senior Clinton aides went to Clinton and demanded that Penn's role in the campaign be diminished. They did not believe it was smart for him to serve as both pollster and strategist.

Clinton resisted, siding with Penn and letting him keep his broad portfolio. Even after Obama surged ahead of Clinton in February, Clinton replaced chief of staff Patti Solis Doyle rather than Penn.

Am I reading too much into this or does it sound like she's doing a crappy job being a leader in her own campaign to anyone else?

Anyway, seems like Clinton should just drop out already.

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In fairness, I don't blame Clinton for much of this mess. I'd say that the candidates in this election seem to keep getting into hot water for what other people are doing - it's a game of who has the worst associations. Failed leadership? I'm no fan of Clinton's, certainly, but I wouldn't leap to the conclusion that this somehow reflects on how her presidency would take shape.

-- She certainly does look foolish though, after criticizing Obama for some vague and airy meeting between an economist and Canadian officials, her own campaign manager turns out to be about ten times worse off as NAFTA is concerned.

In any case, at this point it really does look like Clinton is remaining in the race out of sheer self-interest, and isn't too concerned with her party's well-being.

I suspect that after winning Pennsylvania by maybe 5 points, she will ultimately back out when, in early May, N.C and Indiana make it impossible for her to close the vote and delegate gaps.

That being said, I'd prefer if she dropped out now. Superdelegates *could* make it happen (Obama seems to pick them up at an extraordinary clip), but likely won't out of fear that it will look like they are telling the voters in PA and so on that they don't get to have a say.

[ April 07, 2008, 12:06 PM: Message edited by: JoshCrow ]

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Member # 1464

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Well, it's a little different when a guy on your "spiritual advisers" committee says nasty stuff, and when the director of your entire campaign acts in direct contradiction to your stated policies which happen to be important to most in the upcoming primary state...

I don't mind if she stays until after PA as long as she doesn't pull any more "McCain and I are qualified. Obama you'd have to ask him" crap.

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Here's what this whole episode brings to mind: despite all the claims that Hillary and Obama have roughly the same domestic policy, the fact is, I don't trust Hillary. I don't believe that any of her stated positions will remain in place if she gets into office. Of course, one must explect a little slide with any candidate, but I'm just recalling that Bill had promised a re-negotiation of NAFTA during his 1992 campaign, just as Hillary is doing now. (Edited to add: Yes, I know this thread is not about NAFTA - I'm just making a point about precedent)

Btw, it's great to see our Democrats "on message" here:

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a California Democrat, indicated she opposes the bill unless it is accompanied by protections for U.S. workers.


And the Senate Majority leader, Democrat Harry Reid of Nevada, warned Bush was setting the agreement up to fail.

"Many Democrats continue to have serious concerns about an agreement that creates the highest level of economic integration with a country where workers and their families are routinely murdered and subjected to violence and intimidation for seeking to exercise their most basic economic rights. And the perpetrators of the violence have near total impunity," he said in a statement shortly after Bush spoke.

Pelosi seems perfectly willing to screw Columbian workers, as long as Americans are protected. Great work Nancy!


[ April 07, 2008, 02:11 PM: Message edited by: KidB ]

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