Personally I can’t wait to get to New Hampshire tomorrow. And this is why. Hillary. But stay with me here, I’m very much alone (I live in Vermont.)
I got heart and mind invested. Let’s get this out of the way: it may be my last chance to ever see a woman elected president in my own country. As a feminist from the womb, it’s crucial, so much so that I once even considered campaigning for Elizabeth Dole. Very briefly. But mind over heart in these end times. End times. The repubs get in and we further erode the environment, separation of church and state, and any respect we have left on the world stage. I envision Christian-Fundamentalist-imposed burquas for all women of childbearing age within the next 15 years, but then again, I’m of a hyperbolic nature (except no one saw it coming in Teheran either.) Don’t get me wrong, I love Bernie’s message, it resonates. My husband and I lost almost everything in 2002, I feel the greed and lack of controls on Wall Street acutely and still do every day as we continue to crawl back. But to claim that a president can revolutionize our banking system is pie-in-the-sky. There is just so much that a president can do, it’s a democracy. Hands will be tied.
Jonathan Chait from the New Yorker says it much better than I: “Those areas in which a Democratic Executive branch has no power are those in which Sanders demands aggressive action, and the areas in which the Executive branch still has power now are precisely those in which Sanders has the least to say. The president retains full command of foreign affairs; can use executive authority to drive social policy change in areas like criminal justice and gender; and can, at least in theory, staff the judiciary. What the next president won’t accomplish is to increase taxes, expand social programs, or do anything to reduce inequality, given the House Republicans’ fanatically pro-inequality positions across the board.”
Enter Hillary with her brilliant understanding of foreign affairs. My god, she knows all the world leaders and likely knows all their kids names and birthdays. What I don’t want is a president that can’t do much- no matter how good the original message may be, leaving us even more crippled in the larger arena. And yes, I’ve loved Hillary since I took my baby daughter to meet her when she came to meet with us nurses back in my hometown over two decades ago, wanting to know what was wrong with health care. She fought a valiant fight that is only bearing fruit two decades later, starting when the Millenials were still babies. My point? She’s still around. Still brilliant, tough, presidential. So it’s not like I have time to join a campaign (I’m tired and can’t afford to retire) especially one that will make me even more unpopular with my Vermont neighbors, and it’s not just about meeting Al Franken tomorrow in New Hampshire, although that will be very cool. It’s that, like in so many campaigns before, starting with local campaigns as a kid, even before Eugene McCarthy, even before I could vote, I have no choice. And if Bernie gets the nom nod, you betcha. Him too.