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Davis, California

Friday, April 19, 2024

Finishing the fight

Barack Obama is almost certain of a victory, but Hillary Clintons one-of-a-kind determination to finish the fight until the end is something that he should worry about. All throughout this extraordinary campaign, America has witnessed that Clintons monumental fighting spirit to withstand the most devastating defeat is always strongest when struggling desperately for survival.

Immediately after last weeks Indiana and North Carolina contests, elitist pundits, commentators and media outfits vehemently lambasted Clintons chances of resuscitating her dying campaign. They have raucously declared that the race is over and praised Obamas coronation as the nominee. But every time the harsh media and Clintons vicious opponents claim that she is defeated, finished and hopeless – in New Hampshire, Super Tuesday, Ohio and Texas and in Indianathe impervious American electorate, from women to the middle working class to Hispanics, always catapults her to acomeback kid triumph.

As the euphoria of the Obama campaign and the apostasy of superdelegates and supporters continue, many high-ranking Democrats have coalesced with the pundits in convincing Clinton to abandon her White House bid. However, with all due respect, the American people are the ones who decide whether the race is over or not, not the party officials and certainly not those in the media.

I strongly reject the conclusion that Obama is the apparent nominee, which is predicated on the mathematical reality that it is impossible for Clinton to overtake Obama in the delegate count. The coming contests in West Virginia, Kentucky and Puerto Rico, where she is favored to rout Obama, provides her a chance to undo the damage in North Carolina. If she manages to come back with blowout wins in these states, she could overtake him in the popular votes. Then she could take the fight all the way to the convention, push for the Michigan and Florida delegations and convince the remaining superdelegates, who appear cynical about Obamas electability, to support her.

I also do not subscribe to the idea that Clintons protracted candidacy is endangering the unity of the Democratic Party. Clinton staying in the race further invigorates the democratic process in the country, which allows everyone who has the right to vote to participate in the most important election in recent American history. Democrats will not have a genuine candidate if only 44 states have the chance to vote.

I was never an Obamamania aficionado. His unifying charisma is remarkable. His transforming vision of change to redefine the American political atmosphere is promising. But how can Obama forge a new face of politics if 99 percent of our politicians were spawned by the same establishment he is primed to transform? How could he alter Washington if the majority of his supporters are products of the same status quo themselves?

I am not saying that such a goal is unattainable. It is possible but it does not happen overnight. However, what the American people need now in this tumultuous and uncertain time is a president who offers immediate feasible solutions to the problems of our country. And Clintons decision to stay in the race has not attenuated, but bolstered such a goal.

I just do not comprehend why some people want Clinton to concede the race early. For the first time, our country has a viable woman presidential candidate who not only promises but presents sensible solutions and results, which is an immense achievement for democracy itself in our country. It is Clintons right to make history, but above all, it is her responsibility to make change by continuing to influence people to vote so we can have a better and stronger democracy. Therefore, it is imperative that the Clinton impetus must go on until the last fight.


REAGAN F. PARLAN welcomes your suggestions and comments at rfparlan@ucdavis.edu. 


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