I want to join the small band of people who are advocating that Vice President Joe Biden graciously retire so that Hillary Clinton can join President Barack Obama on the 2012 Democratic presidential ticket.
I have no complaints about Joe Biden term as Vice President (his weasel-like behavior in the Clarence Thomas confirmation hearings years ago is another story). But replacing him with our Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton, would benefit the country in three ways (and please forgive me if I repeat a little of what political consultants Patrick Caddell and Douglas Schoen and New York Times columnist Bill Keller recently have written:
- It would virtually ensure the re-election of President Obama and perhaps help to recapture the House of Representatives and keep the Senate. Hillary is regarded by most as a highly successful Secretary of State and has been the most admired woman in the United States 10 years and counting. I have no illusions about President Obama and this current crop of Democrats, including Hillary. They are centrists who lean towards corporate interests, but they are a lot better than the Republican’s virulent right-wingers. We can’t afford to give the Republicans four years to lower taxes on the wealthy even more, gut social programs, take away civil rights and destroy the Environmental Protection Agency, National Labor Relations Board and other important government agencies.
- We would have perhaps the most qualified Vice President in our history, with the possible exception of Henry Wallace, who was Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s second VP. Hillary Clinton has served as a corporate attorney, first lady, U.S. Senator and Secretary of State and has distinguished herself in every role. She has shown an uncanny ability to keep growing, as witnessed by the lessons that she obviously learned from her failed attempt to pass healthcare legislation in her husband’s first term. Hillary is also well respected across the globe and has helped to shape President Obama’s mostly successful foreign policy. And like Barack Obama, she is clearly an intelligent person who prefers science-based solutions and analyses to those based primarily on faith.
- It would set Hillary up for a successful run for President in 2016, when she will only be 68 years old. With her experience, her popularity in the United States and around the world, her ability to get things done and her essentially compassionate vision, I believe that Hillary would make a lot of headway in rebalancing the distribution of wealth and income and addressing the triple-headed environmental monster of global warming, resource shortages and pollution.
For those who want to create a band wagon for Hillary Clinton, there’s no time to waste. You should write, call or email both President Obama and Secretary Clinton, the sooner the better.
But your activism shouldn’t end there. You should also make sure that you advocate positions to President Obama and every Democratic candidate that drive them further to the left, including:
- Raising income tax rates on those who make more than $200,000
- Removing the cap on income that is assessed the Social Security tax
- Strengthening the NLRB and raising the minimum wage
- Reducing defense spending
- Investing more in repairing roads and bridges, increasing mass transit, developing alternative energy and creating a new generation of pollution controls.