Clinton’s RFK Remarks, and the Last Straw

Well, I’ve had a long weekend to mull over Clinton’s ill chosen RFK remarks, and after three days, I know where I stand with them, with her, and this whole process completely.

Let’s be clear; I don’t think Clinton’s putting a “hit” out on Obama.  I don’t think her prime intention was to imply that she was waiting for Obama to stick around and die, though I think that from her words, in context, she was not excluding the possibility.

But for someone who is supposedly so intelligent and so politically gifted, there does come an impasse in arguments.  If Clinton’s statement regarding RFK’s assassination in historical reference was simply her being tone deaf, then one cannot attribute to her any great political genius, and no amount of fatigue (though Obama was more than gracious enough to give Clinton a pass on the argument based on fatigue) changes that.  You simply can’t have even a mediocre political mind and still not instantly understand that bringing up assassination and “Kennedy” in the same week where Ted Kennedy is diagnosed with a brain tumor, or that such specters are an ugly reminder to the increased likelihood of assassination attempts against Obama due to racial tensions in this country, would be a very bad move politically.

On the other hand, if you insist on deifying Clinton politically, you must recognize that everything she says is said for a reason.  Again, I don’t believe she was putting out a hit on her opponent in any way, that idea is itself ludicrous (though I’m sure many on the right would scream “Vince Foster!”).  But knowing that Obama is black, and knowing that there are still very active white supremicist groups out there, that she raised assassination at all could very well have been intended to raise doubts that many held when Obama first became a serious contender.

He’s gonna get shot!

Whatever the case, it’s not important.

It was an incredibly stupid, ugly, and insensitive thing to say, but the point is that this isn’t an isolated incident with Clinton.  This isn’t just one event that sends us all over the deep end.

When Keith Olbermann delivered his special comment against Hillary Clinton, his words of condemnation towards her RFK remarks rung true, but they did not carry with them the most salient point of this incident in light of the bigger picture.  No, Olbermann’s most significant words came towards the end.

God knows, Senator, in this campaign, this nation has had to forgive you, early and often…

And despite your now traditional position of the offended victim, the nation has forgiven you.

We have forgiven you your insistence that there have been widespread calls for you to end your campaign, when such calls had been few. We have forgiven you your misspeaking about Martin Luther King’s relative importance to the Civil Rights movement.

We have forgiven you your misspeaking about your under-fire landing in Bosnia.

We have forgiven you insisting Michigan’s vote wouldn’t count and then claiming those who would not count it were Un-Democratic.

We have forgiven you pledging to not campaign in Florida and thus disenfranchise voters there, and then claim those who stuck to those rules were as wrong as those who defended slavery or denied women the vote.

We have forgiven you the photos of Osama Bin Laden in an anti-Obama ad…

We have forgiven you fawning over the fairness of Fox News while they were still calling you a murderer.

We have forgiven you accepting Richard Mellon Scaife’s endorsement and then laughing as you described his “deathbed conversion.”

We have forgiven you quoting the electoral predictions of Boss Karl Rove.

We have forgiven you the 3 a.m. Phone Call commercial.

We have forgiven you President Clinton’s disparaging comparison of the Obama candidacy to Jesse Jackson’s.

We have forgiven you Geraldine Ferraro’s national radio interview suggesting Obama would not still be in the race had he been a white man.

We have forgiven you the dozen changing metrics and the endless self-contradictions of your insistence that your nomination is mathematically probable rather than a statistical impossibility.

We have forgiven you your declaration of some primary states as counting and some as not.

We have forgiven you exploiting Jeremiah Wright in front of the editorial board of the lunatic-fringe Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

We have forgiven you exploiting William Ayers in front of the debate on ABC.

We have forgiven you for boasting of your “support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans”…

We have even forgiven you repeatedly praising Senator McCain at Senator Obama’s expense, and your own expense, and the Democratic ticket’s expense.

Over at the Moderate Voice, contributor Jill Miller Zimon posts a chart that tracks the cyclic behavior of Obama supporters, and I noticed that, skipping a section here or there, I actually did manage to follow along with that chart.

But human behavior rarely happens in a vacuum. Yes, I followed the cycle, but what Keith’s comments made clear is that there was a reason behind that cycle.

Because I’m a Democrat, and I am still proud to call myself as such, I have forced myself to forgive Clinton every single slight that Olbermann details and more.  My own personal emotions would see to it that I lashed out initially, but after my temper cooled, I would realize that we have to come together, and I would remind myself that she’s just being a fighter, and that this, too, shall pass.

In the end I would convince myself to forgive her only for my newfound magnanimity to be shattered days or weeks later by yet another slight.  Over and over again I have played through this cycle for months now, and frankly I’m tired, and the cycle must be broken.

Since Clinton has shattered any credibility that she will act with any sense of decency, that there will eventually be a last time when she truly will change her ways this time, I simply won’t play out this charade anymore.

I choose, this time. to refuse to forgive her.  Likely, I never will.

14 Responses to “Clinton’s RFK Remarks, and the Last Straw”

  1. Connie Ruggieri says:

    You never will forgive Hillary and we will never forgive the press.
    This latest incident just proves how far the press will go.
    Anyone in their right mind knows that she was only justifying her staying in the race.
    Everyone has been trying to push her out. And that is a fact.
    She is leading in the polls in the national election,
    Everyone is afraid that she might win the popular vote and make everyone look bad.
    They already do.
    So do you.
    You all need analysts.
    You all try to read something in that isn’t there.
    All you newspaper people need to take a vacation and go sit on some analysts couch.
    We know you all do it for money.
    The rest of us, unless you’re an Obama supporter, and want to make hay, just listen to the dialogue and realize what she was saying. I’m not getting out of this race.!!!! End of story . Nothing to explain. She shouldn’t even have apoligized. For what???
    Kennedy was assasinated. It is a fact. We can’t change History to please Obama or anyone else. Was his assassination hurtful? Yes. Can we erase the memory? No. Can we mention it? We should be able to, without blaming someone. Or trying to ease our conscience.
    See an analyst. After this election is over , quite a few people will need one,.
    Maybe then, they can act with some sense of decency. And Hillary will forgive them.

  2. Jill says:

    Thanks for the link. I think it’s fair to say that we are so deeply into R.D. Laing territory of us experiencing one another and forever changing our ability to be objective where these two candidates are concerned that I believe people really feel the way they do, when they say it – but whether or not something is or isn’t offensive, much harder to guess.

  3. John Shreffler says:

    Hey Connie,

    Hillary’s not the forgiving kind. Read Sally Beddell Smith’s book on the Clintons, For Love of Politics, if you don’t want to take my word for it. What a nasty piece of work she’s turned out to be.

  4. Angellight says:

    We have had a glimpse into the dark, secret recesses of her mind!

  5. tas says:

    Hey Connie,

    Fuck you.


    The People Who Are Sick To Death Of You Fucking Hillary Assholes Telling Everyone Who Speaks Out Against Your Candidate That They Needs Psychological Help Or Something Please Go Take You Smug Attitude And Personal Insults And Shove Them Up Your Ass

  6. Barbara says:

    The best that can be said about her statement is that it was in the absolute worst taste. Not to mention, bore no relation to reality, which is that her husband had clinched his nomination, for all intents and purposes, in April, and he’s the one who said so.

    But for her to blame the Obama campaign for the media attention is beyond disgusting. Does this woman ever take any responsibility for her own words and actions?

    I’ll tell you what I’ll never forgive her for. Not the lies, not the distortions, not the sleazy campaign tactics. I’ll never forgive her for WVWV, the group with numerous ties to her campaign, who actually tried to disenfranchise voters, particularly blacks, in twelve states.

    That’s a Republican tactic, not a Democrat one.

    No, Hillary, you have not acted as a Democrat, through any of this campaign. Not with your sense of entitlement to the nomination, not with your campaign itself and how it was run, and not with how you’re losing.

    All I’ve seen since April is you try to muddy Obama, with the fervent wish he loses in the fall, because you know you do not and will not have the math to win.

    Be gone with you, and start working to save your senate seat.

  7. bostondreams says:

    Connie, put aside the assassination talk; the analogy that Clinton made was completely wrong anyway! Why was Kennedy still running in June? Because the primaries did not begin until March! How about Bill? Well, he says in his own book that he had the nomination wrapped up by APRIL, NOT June. Once again, a ‘misinterpretation’ of history.

    And Obama supporters will never forgive Clinton for her words and actions in this race, or her supporters for being so cultish. See, I can make blanket statements too!

  8. Katherine says:

    I can’t believe how the media spun this out to be a story. It’s such a shame. MSM and mass media has been downright insane this whole primary season–Obama is STILL not even vetted, and we are finally done with the media built cult of personality that was Obama, and I’m glad the Obama-Mania pyschosis that was manufactured via mass media propaganda has died.

    Never mind MSNBC and others who have been downright misogynisitic. I’d love to crack Keith Olbermann in the face. The arrest would be worth it.

  9. Tony Smith says:

    To the people who say 1992 is irrelevant because Bill had wrapped it up — well, doesn’t that make it relevant here because: 1. Obama has also wrapped it up, but this campaign, like the one in 1992 still goes on….or 2. Obama has NOT wrapped it up, so this campaign should continue? (or Clinton has wrapped it up and Obama should drop out?).

    Also — as someone who voted for Jesse twice, I am offended by people who think it’s insulting to compare the two. Jesse was a great politician. Apparently, he’s not the right type of black person for some of you people.

  10. Tony Smith says:


    Boycotting Obama Will Lead to Famine, Armageddon, Government-Controlled Uteruses and Other Scare Tactics

    We have seen a lot of desperate Democrats suddenly scrambling to “unify” with Clinton’s supporters, now that they realize that their snowjob of an election has caused turmoil and will lead to an Obama boycott in November. The classic response to our anger says that we need to relax, take a deep breath, not let emotions cloud judgment, and to think about Roe, your uterus, Third World uteruses, Iraq, thousands of dying soldiers, the economy, Bush III, and many other desperate pro-Obama talking points designed to crush the boycott and instill fear. Well, here’s my answer (disclaimer: I do not have a uterus).

    First of all, I do not need to clear my head and take a deep breath. I did not start voting yesterday, unlike many of Obama’s supporters. Instead, I am a lifetime Democrat, and I have been voting for Democrats locally, state-wide, and nationally since the mid-80s. I am very experienced having my candidate lose, but then moving on to support the party ticket. In past primaries, for example, I voted for Dean, Bradley, and Jesse Jackson (twice!). I get the idea of party unity, so stop treating me like a kid.

    Second, my vote in November goes beyond the liberal “issues” you describe: it protests liberal hypocrisy. The party espouses an equality rhetoric but has been completely dishonest and contradictory during this election. The party has bashed poor white people and people whose last names are Clinton. The party has ignored Latino voters because recognizing them challenges the “only racists vote for Clinton script.” The party has invented claims of racial injustice to demonize the Clintons. The party has ridiculed “uneducated” voters, even though Democrats supposedly represent disadvantaged people. Male party members and liberal media have constantly called for Clinton to drop out — starting after Iowa — in order to place an aura of doubt around her campaign. The party has ignored voters in Florida and Michigan in order to legitimize Howard Dean’s bad judgment. The party has completely ignored or even denied the sexist treatment of Clinton, while responding with absolute venom to any real or imagined “racism” directed towards Obama. The party has allowed Obama to wear multiple racial hats — the nonracial black man, the just black enough to be an historic black president, and the black racial victim –- to secure votes. If Clinton deviates even slightly from a prior script, she is portrayed as a horrible witch who would do “anything to get elected.” I refuse to join this madness.

    In April, Obama pranced around and described Clinton as “Annie Oakley” gunning her way through Pennsylvania for votes. But when he came out looking like Steve Urkel bowling and drinking Yuengling for votes in the same state, the media and party ate it up — another “precious” Obama moment. Recently, CNN.COM posted footage of some mesmerized journalist covering Obama’s jeans. Why should I have to endorse this mayhem?

    Third, I am unmoved by the progressive issues that the pro-Obama side uses to scare us into voting for him. But you got to love “the horror”: If you vote for McCain or don’t vote for Obama, the Supreme Court will overrule Roe, thousands of men and women will die in Iraq, poor people will remain poor, the environment will decline, we will not achieve peace on earth and domestic tranquility, and you will deprive “our children” from having a “great country.” I feel a tear coming!

    These are just Karl Rovian “red alerts.” Obama is not entitled to our votes. He did not earn my loyalty. Whatever loyalty the party had from me prior to this election has been depleted. Earlier on when we wanted to discuss progressive issues, the Obama camp and the media silenced our efforts and instead focused on the big rock star pep rallies, Obamania, Camelot, weeping college students, and a host of other unimportant concerns. People could not tell us specifically why they supported him, but they knew that he was the best and that he would bring “change.” They told us that we and Clinton were cold and unhopeful and that emotions and inspiration were more important. Clinton was a mere “policy wonk,” while Obama made people “feel good again.” Well, enjoy your Hallmark moments and stop being two-faced. Suddenly, you want to talk about the issues because it benefits Obama. Earth to my fellow Democrats: Obama’s success does not dictate the way I vote.

    I am still focused on issues, but topics beyond your “red scare” alerts are important to me as well. My vote responds to a party of hypocrites who dismiss loyal Democrats, bash older folks and women, and manipulate race – while calling it “progressive.” My protest is about not wanting to be a part of a vote that legitimizes sexism. I do not wish to condone the younger Democrats’ misunderstanding of the Republican witch hunts that hurt all Democrats in the past — what they call “Clinton scandals,” when every honest person recalls them as Ken Starr scandals! Where was the “education” on this issue by party veterans? The DNC rushes to bash McCain for his 100 years comment, which reputable entities like say was not even true, but Clinton is misportrayed abundantly and all we get is silence. Party leadership and the media sharply denounce anything that could negatively impact Obama. They describe legitimate and fair criticism of him as racist, mean-spirited, evil, or “Clinton politics.” Clearly the party leadership has determined that anytime he looks weak, the “boys” will endorse him or call for Clinton to leave because she is “hurting the party” and “kneecapping” the “first viable black presidential candidate” – as if Clinton should bear responsibility for remedying the country’s history of racism which has kept people of color out of high office. Well, party leadership and media, you made these rules; suffer the consequences. To paraphrase Obama, don’t tell me my disgust with your behavior doesn’t matter. Don’t tell me sexism doesn’t matter. Don’t tell me liberal hypocrisy doesn’t matter. Don’t tell me fake racial politics doesn’t matter. Don’t tell me I must vote for Obama in order to be a “real” Democrat. If being a real Democrat means bashing women, the poor, and the elderly, manipulating race, ignoring Latinos, and stifling dissent, then I respectfully resign my membership! Achieving justice requires sacrifice, brutal honesty, and passionate commitment. I will not “endorse anything to get a Democrat elected,” and neither should you.

    – A Black Man Supporting Hillary Clinton and the Women Who Want More…..

  11. Oh, Tony, really, great comment. You decry the sexism, the ‘fake racism,’ the hypocrisy, supposed bashing of the poor, this supposed disenfranchisment of Florida and Michigan…and yet you and yours claim that you will vote for the party that has historically been an enemy of civil rights, equality, and on and on. And the so-called ‘Ken Starr scandals’ WOULD HAVE BEEN IMPOSSIBLE IF BILL CLINTON HAD KEPT HIS PANTS ZIPPED! Hell, the man lied under oath to try and save his own ass, and trapped himself. Don’t try to rewrite history. Yes, the Gingrich Republicans were a bunch of pricks, but Bill and HIllary brought it on themselves. The man never even cracked 50% of the vote. And I voted for him twice.
    How has the party bashed women? I don’t recall Dean or Obama or Pelosi arguing against women’s rights or suggesting that, you know, a wife is a tramp (unlike McCain). Or are you suggesting that female Obama supporters are brainwashed?
    How, just how, has the party ‘ignored’ Florida and Michigan? Don’t the rules matter? Are you suggesting we should reward the states for breaking the rules, allow them a full slate of delegates without consequence? Please. You know and I know that Clinton would be saying NOTHING about this if she was not desperate. And, by the way, HER OWN CAMPAIGN STAFF SUPPORTED THE DECISION! Why do you folks always ignore that?
    As to the bashing of supposed poor whites? Where? When? Define ‘poor whites.’ Obama has won the support of ‘poor whites’ throughout the country, at least outside Appalachia, which has its own issues with women and minorities.
    And how can you plausibly claim that Clinton is in any way ready for the general election? She has won an incompetent campaign, and her supporters have spent more time whining about media coverage and Obama than anything else. As her own husband said, if you cannot stand the heat, get out if the kitchen.
    As to your earlier comment concerning Bill in 1992: nice try. She is explicitly comparing herself to her husband, suggesting that he was in a tight race in 1992, which is bullshit. And as for Obama dropping out, what? Why? He has already won.

  12. CeeHussein says:


    You say that the MSM is insane as you talk about craking someone in the face? LOL!


    I’m not thinking about Hillary, her husband or her crazed supporters again.
    I’m with Tas.

  13. Okay, I’m sorry for the tone of my comment.
    This whole race is getting stupid. If Clinton were a man, she would have been forced out already.
    See, it works both ways, Tony!

  14. Tom R says:

    But when he came out looking like Steve Urkel bowling and drinking Yuengling for votes in the same state, the media and party ate it up — another “precious” Obama moment.

    In the real world, virtually every pundit and opinion maker was laughing at Obama for scoring “only” 37. Yes, even Chris Matthews, who apparently was taking time out from being a misogynist to repeatedly make fun of Obama.

    Someday, I’m going to understand the bubble in which Clinton supporter spend their days.


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