George Packer writes: The Clinton-Obama battle reveals two very different ideas of the Presidency.
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Packer describes their primary differentiation as being in their conceptions of the Presidency. Working towards change through good governance is Clinton's approach. Obama, on the other hand, "offers himself as a catalyst by which disenchanted Americans can overcome...partisanship, energize our democracy and restore faith in government."
Clinton's dismissal of Obama's message as optimistic naiveté reflects a belief in incremental change through compromise and the necessity of being armed for battle. The article suggests that Obama has a quality that Clinton lacks: comfortable self-possession. Clinton's inability to be authentic continues to be her primary handicap. Especially as, the article demonstrates, she possesses political experience, intelligence, humanity and kindness in good measure. It is her self-protective manner, honed from years in the often harsh spotlight, that inhibits her ability to connect in a positive or optimistic way.
Packer quotes Greg Craig, long-time Clinton friend, past attorney and now advisor to Barack Obama's campaign. "I don't discount the possibility of her being able to inspire me. But she hasn't in the past, and Obama has."
Further on in the article Dee Dee Meyers is quoted "Hillary needs to connect two things. What's in her heart and what she wants to accomplish and why...It comes down to your ability to get people to follow you, to inspire."
Is there a candidate who inspires you?
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Thursday, February 14
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