Monday, December 3, 2007

Clinton Friend and Former Cabinet Member Robert Reich Slams Hillary's Campaign

Lots of political news today, and at the risk of pointing out every anti-Hillary, pro-Barack Obama story out there (which I don't want to do and don't want this blog to become -- There are Detroit Lions players and coaches to criticize too) I found this really interesting. Robert Reich, who has been a longtime friend of the Clinton family, and was Labor Secretary in Bill Clinton's administration, posted a strong rebuke of Clinton's campaign on his blog today, taking her to task for getting personal with Obama, and questioning her policy choices, concluding Obama's are better solutions.

I just don’t get it. If there’s anyone in the race whose history shows unique courage and character, it's Barack Obama. HRC’s campaign, by contrast, is singularly lacking in conviction about anything. Her pollster, Mark Penn, has advised her to take no bold positions and continuously seek the political center, which is exactly what she’s been doing.

All is fair in love, war, and politics. But this series of slurs doesn't serve HRC well. It will turn off voters in Iowa, as in the rest of the country. If she's worried her polls are dropping, this is not the way to build them back up.

While Clinton questions Barack Obama's character for claiming his health insurance plan really is universal when she claims it isn't, Reich concludes that
HRC doesn’t indicate how she’d enforce her mandate, and I can’t find enough money in HRC’s plan to help all those who won’t be able to afford to buy it. I’m also impressed by the up-front investments in information technology in O’s plan, and the reinsurance mechanism for coping with the costs of catastrophic illness. HRC is far less specific on both counts. In short: They’re both advances, but O’s is the better of the two.

The story is interesting because of Reich's connections to the Clintons, so what he says should have some force and some power to it, because this not an Obama surrogate touting his plans, but a neutral observer, and if anything, an observer more inclined to take a pro-Clinton point of view than anything. Very interesting.

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