Saturday, November 17, 2007


In the CNN Democratic debates of November 15, 2007 the CNN should have stood for "Clinton News Network." Hillary was given a chance to "clarify" her positions on illegal immigrants receiving drivers licences, a supposed gaffe (I love that word.) that conservative media has pounced on.
Wolfe Blitzer began his line of questioning to Governor Richardson. Wolfe, of course, knew what the answer would be and received a rationaled approach as to why Richardson, as Governor of New Mexico, adopted the program. Why? Because immigration is a federal issue. Licences are a state issue. The federal government was not controlling immigration and while working immigrants were driving, and crashing. So in the interest of safety, they were taught how to drive and overall motor vehicle accidents decreased.
Then the question went to Obama. He answered that the premise of the question was wrong. Blitzer asked "in the absence of comprehensive immigration reform" would you allow licences for illegals. Obama said as President, he would push for that reform, so the question Blitzer asked required some thought and some overall policy background. It was not a yes / no question.
But Blitzer pushed, clearly looking for a "got you" (Hillary's words) moment for Obama. Because Obama gave a thorough answer the crowd, a strange majority of Hillary supporters, seemed to laugh confusingly. Blitzer retorted he thought it was a "yes or no" answer.
Then Hillary responded rather W-like, preparing for the general election we presume, "NO." She was able to answer after the minority candidates on an issue about minorities and restate a position in one word that she had changed several times in one week based on her audience. When it played poorly in the national media, she needed to change her stance yet again and Blitzer gave her the chance.
Planned? Its hard not believe it wasn't. Successful? The post debate wrap up which included former Clinton advisers Gergen and Carville told us it was. They were all on the same page. Planned? You decide.

No comments: