Wednesday, January 30, 2008
Do It Now, John.
For Obama hopefuls I offer the following. When, and if, John Edwards leaves the presidential race, the question is which of the remaining two candidates will receive the benefit? Clinton or Obama? The stage is set not far down the road for Edwards to give one of the most potentially important and historic speeches in American history. At the risk of overstating the obvious I offer this background note: When was the first time a presidential candidate has been a woman? Same question, an African-American? I am certain that John (what's in it for me?) Edwards views his status as the opportunity to be the potential compromise candidate once a consensus for either of the first two cannot be reached. In his view, there will be John, standing in the wings, waiting for his chance, the default candidate (white and male). I submit that Edwards has the opportunity to put his personal ambition aside and provide one of the illuminating and unifying moments ever. On the issues, there is very little to distinguish the three candidates. All pretty much want the same thing and the petty bickering of the recent debates reveals that Clinton doesn't mind trash politics in seeking to attain her goal of becoming president. Edwards can and should abandon his ambitions at the appropriate time and endorse Obama. The specter of an upper middle class white male from the South setting aside his personal ambition and endorsing a black candidate for the presidency is a Camelot opportunity. A lot of people of my generation, the old farts, remember the dream of the Kennedy presidency before that dream was shattered by the bullets of Oswald on November 22, 1963. As Caroline Kennedy wrote a couple of days ago, Obama is the first candidate since that time who has aroused the hopes and the dreams of voters around the country who legitimately feel that the political machines have subordinated principle to politics. So this is my message to John Edwards. John, I will forgive you for stealing my client in the middle of the trial we handled together back in the early 1990s. I swear forever that I will not mention your alley cat antics during that trial that led us to lose a winnable case, given the 25 criminal convictions of Eli Lilly and Co, that served as the basis for my portion of the trial presentation. To receive my forgiveness you must now do the honorable thing, the obvious thing, the correct thing. The question is when should this take place? There is a certain urgency to the need for this to occur. Time is running out. Do it now.