Wednesday, September 17, 2003

Clinton-Clark 2008

Clinton-Clark 2008
Commentary by Sanford D. Horn
September 17, 2003

Although erroneously reported when Wesley Clark announced his candidacy for the Democratic nomination for president in 2004 that Hillary Clinton would serve as co-chair of his campaign, the two will eventually be linked in what could be a frightening pairing.

Clark, 58, a retired four star general, raised in Little Rock, Arkansas, entered the race for his party’s nomination – the tenth candidate to do so, graduated first in his class at West Point and served his country in uniform for 34 years. In 1970 Clark earned a Purple Heart and Silver Star while serving in Vietnam. A social liberal, Clark will appeal to moderate Democrats because of his military background and for his being a southerner.

While Clark is used to giving orders, he is also used to serving his country. This run for the Democratic nomination may merely be a test balloon to see how he will play in Peoria. This is simply a dress rehearsal for the 2008 campaign when former First Lady and current New York Senator Clinton will make a run for the White House herself.

Clinton, no longer content to play second banana, will seek the top spot on the Democratic ticket in 2008. This should belie any thoughts of Clark selecting Clinton as his running mate for the 2004 campaign. She instead will tap the career military man to give her ticket the image of having a military backbone.

Do not be drawn into this ploy when it happens. Clark vehemently opposed this administration’s war effort in Iraq. Clark also had his NATO command in Kosovo “taken” from him and opted for early retirement in July 2000 upon the joint request of then Defense Secretary William Cohen and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Henry Shelton.

As Senator Joseph Lieberman (D-CT) flip-flopped from his normally moderate views to dancing to the tune of the liberal Al Gore when Gore became his party’s standard bearer in 2000, expect Clark to march in lock-step behind Clinton, demonstrably and virulently anti-military. Also, do not forget her failed attempt to hijack and socialize the health care industry in the United States during her husband’s administration. Ask a Canadian how happy they are with their healthcare system.

Also, discount the lame-brained notion that Clark would seek the presidency with Clinton on the ticket then resign the office in order for Clinton to grab the brass ring without ever having been elected. That is far-fetched, at best. Clark would first have to win the nomination, which is certainly no guarantee. Former Vermont Governor Howard Dean is still the candidate to beat, in spite of his recent verbal gaffes.

(During the week of the last Democratic candidate’s debate Dean said the United States should play a neutral role in the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict. This would dramatically alter the 55-year relationship enjoyed between the United States and Israel and be contrary to the history between the two nations. Dean’s next verbal blunder came a day later when he referred to Hamas terrorists as soldiers fighting a war. Given ample opportunity to retract both statements, he retracted neither.)

Clark would then have to defeat President Bush, which would be no easy task in spite of the liberal media’s attempts to discredit this administration at every turn. Bush’s approval ratings may be slipping, but they are merely leveling off after a quicker than expected military success in Iraq. For those who wish to condemn this administration for an alleged economic downturn, President Bush inherited that from former President Clinton. At the same time, the economy has been affected by the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks as well the war on terrorism being fought in both Afghanistan and Iraq. Our president has contended with the most challenging of circumstances with both dignity and resolve.

This president should be re-elected for restoring the military to the former greatness it enjoyed before President Bill Clinton got his draft-dodging hands on it. President Bush should be re-elected for his swift response to the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. Had Gore been in the White House, he would have had the country join hands and sing “Kum By Ya.” Restoring the military, fighting terrorism and wars on two fronts have obviously been costly – both in humanity and in dollars, yet the economy has not suffered as severely as it could have.

Re-election for President Bush is certainly no sure thing. But, should it happen, the nation must brace itself for the Clinton-Clark team in 2008. Dangerous. Frightening. A possibility. And the GOP has no one waiting in the wings.

G-d Bless America.

Sanford D. Horn is a writer and political consultant living in Alexandria, VA.