2008 The Feminist Case Against Hillary Clinton
posted by December 11 at 12:06 PMon
Ever since ECB’s smart feature about women voters & Hillary Clinton, I’ve been stuck on this heretical thought.
Maybe there’s a feminist reason for not supporting Hillary Clinton—and it doesn’t have a thing to do with the issues. It’s HRC herself. Do we really want the first female president of the United States to have been invited to the national stage not because of her individual achievements but because of the person she’s married to? The difference between a female senator being appointed after the death of her elected husband and HRC’s situation is slight. How many people plan to vote for Hillary just because Bill can’t be president anymore, and this is the next best thing? And how depressing is that?
I didn’t have any concrete notion of the answer to this question until I read the most recent New York Times/CBS poll, which found that “nearly as many of Mrs. Clinton’s backers say they are supporting her because of her husband as say they are supporting her because of her own experience”.
The hard numbers are even more distressing. Likely Democratic primary voters were asked why they support the candidate they support: “married to Bill Clinton” is the second most popular reason.
22. What specifically is it about CANDIDATE NAME that makes you want to support him/her?
I like him/her 4
Best candidate for the job 1
Agree on the issues 9
Represents change 8
Good experience 16
Vision for the country 3
Shares values 1
Not typical politician 1
Cares about people like me 2
New person/fresh face 10
Washington outsider –-
Married to Bill Clinton 13
Stance on Iraq War 3
Will bring troops home from Iraq -–
Stance on terrorism -–
Stance on health care 2
She’s a woman/time for a woman 4
He’s African American/Time for that 2
Strong leader -–
It’s worth noting that the first most popular reason for supporting a given candidate (experience) often undoubtedly translates into HRC’s time in the White House as First Lady—an occupation that, should a girl actively aspire to it, is no more productive a career goal than marrying rich.
As a candidate, I like Hillary Clinton fine, though I prefer Barack Obama. But the idea of supporting a candidate whom most people like primarily because she’s married to someone they love—the whole thing just makes me queasy.