Finally, Hillary begins to make the argument that she should have been making all along: You may be JFK, but I’m LBJ

Today, it appears that Hillary may finally have the beginnings of an argument against Obama that may stick. She is finally giving in to the notion that he may be the latest reincarnation of John F. Kennedy, but her response is that she’ll be Johnson. Her argument is that Obama may be an inspiring speaker, and may have a compelling background, but she is willing to be the grizzly well-connected and well-seasoned politician who will work behind the scenes, not always in a pretty fashion, that will thanklessly get things done. This is a strong argument, and one that she should have begun a while ago.

She may run into two problems with this argument. The first, as Matt Yglesias rightly stated recently, is that it is Kennedy who is held as our post-war president saint. Though Johnson was a far more effective president, and Kennedy did not accomplish much during his tenure, Kennedy is remembered as one of our greatest leaders, and Johnson is forgotten if not reviled.

The second problem that Hillary may face is that it may be too late for this argument. She should have been making this argument back in November. She has co-opted too much of Obama’s rhetoric and logic to now cast herself as the only one who knows how to direct the political discourse and move her position along. She should have been giving Obama his props from the beginning, while recognizing and embracing her own defects. Rather than give the (largely unconvincing) argument that she is the only one who has been vetted, she should have said from the beginning: Yes, BHO is the second-coming of JFK, but HRC is the second coming of LBJ. And, even though it is obvious which of the two had the golden face and the silver tongue, let’s not forget who did more to get us out of Vietnam and work towards healing America’s racial tensions.

Plus, if given the choice, I’d prefer another Johnson in the White House than a possible Thatcher.


2 Responses to Finally, Hillary begins to make the argument that she should have been making all along: You may be JFK, but I’m LBJ

  1. specks says:

    I remember Johnson as a president, reacted to the times of the day and was more a follower than a leader, but that’s only my memory of times long ago. That is not a type of president I would care to revisit.

    Hillary’s problem is and continues to be that she doesn’t know who she is. She changes slogans, rhetoric as often as we change clothes. I don’t know what the cause of this is,advisors, polls, whatever, either way it has not given us a chance to know her and now I don’t really want to. When she ‘co-opts’ the other candidates words, she does not sound believable and why would she? She has spent more time telling us what’s wrong with Obama than what is right about her.

    I would have loved to have been able to vote for a woman as president. Unfortunately, it won’t be this one at this time.

  2. Morsel says:

    You must not have read “Living History”. If you do, you will understand that Hillary has a very confident sense of who she is, what she stands for and what she would like to contribute to our country. Resist being swayed by the commentariat whose slogans and rhetoric for any number of reasons have sought to smear the Clintons and deprive us of their talents.

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