In a sense, last night’s Clinton-Obama debate was probably a final scene in the politics of despair and hope. The play is coming to a conclusion, the denouement will allow the audience to learn who is the victor and that, most probably, will be Senator Barack Obama. There is little sense arguing about Senator Clinton’s tactics for the simple reason she may not be on stage after next week’s primaries. Future political analysts will have a field day examining the Clinton strategy of emphasizing “experience” over “hope.” The American people justifiably grasp they are entering an historic period in their nation’s history and the past must serve as a prelude to a new future. Barack Obama has understood from day one of his campaign the importance of advocating the “politics of hope” to a fatigued society. Americans have been “Iraqued out” and have become frightened other powers are passing them by in the race for economic supremacy.
Hillary Clinton’s performance merely reflects death of politics of the past in which personal attacks are the foundation of victory. Americans don’t care who received the first or the last question, they are not concerned over which words must be used to denounce or reject an evil person’s support. Senator Clinton is correct that Barack Obama uses lofty words to express his goals, but so did Franklin Roosevelt and John F. Kennedy. Each of those great Democratic Party leaders reassured a nation wracked by fear a new world was a’borning. FDR told Americans in 1933 the only thing to fear was fear itself and John Kennedy asked not what the country could do for you but what could you do for the country.
John McCain has the same problem that Hillary Clinton faced –he offers the experience of passed failure, but no hope for a new future. America does NOT wish continuation of current policies, it desires a new opening into the future.