HIL­LARY’S SHADOW

The Washington Times Weekly - - Politics -

The pre­vi­ous time New York busi­ness leader and Demo­cratic ac­tivist Bill Arnone sur­veyed some five-dozen of his fel­low staunch Sen. Hil­lary Rod­ham Clin­ton sup­port­ers, they in­di­cated they would “ei­ther vote for McCain-Palin or for nei­ther ticket, or were un­de­cided, or would write in Se­na­tor Clin­ton’s name.”

Now the for­mer vol­un­teer ad­viser to Mrs. Clin­ton’s cam­paign has asked the group of Democrats: Would you change your mind if Mrs. Clin­ton were to re­place Sen. Joseph R. Bi­den Jr. as the vice-pres­i­den­tial can­di­date run­ning with Sen. Barack Obama?

The re­sults, which he for­warded to In­side the Belt­way: Yes: 56 per­cent; No: 39 per­cent; Not sure: 5 per­cent.

Not sur­pris­ingly, many of those who re­sponded “Yes” noted they could not “imag­ine such a sce­nario,” which re­mains highly un­likely. Oth­ers said that while they would sup­port an Obama-Clin­ton ticket, they were against the idea, as it would make the Democrats look “des­per­ate.”

Then there were those who em­pha­sized they still strongly pre­fer that Mrs. Clin­ton head the ticket, even more than un­likely.

Fi­nally, some of Mrs. Clin­ton’s sup­port­ers in­di­cated they would not vote for any Demo­cratic ticket in Novem­ber as a protest “against the Demo­cratic Na­tional Com­mit­tee,” which cre­ated fur­ther divi­sion within the party when it would not al­low some states’ votes to count in the pri­mary.

As for Mr. Arnone, who is with Ernst & Young, he spoke with Mrs. Clin­ton last month when she threw a thank-you re­cep­tion for her sup­port­ers in Man­hat­tan.

“If Hil­lary Clin­ton had looked me in the eye and said, ‘Bill, do for Barack Obama ex­actly what you were do­ing and would have done for me,’ then I would de­vote all of my en­ergy to help­ing him and would en­cour­age oth­ers to do the same,” he wrote in a re­cent op-ed.

“In­stead, what I heard was a can­did ac­knowl­edg­ment that it is tak­ing more time for some to trans­fer their en­thu­si­asm to an­other can­di­date af­ter so closely con­tested and con­tentious a cam­paign for the nom­i­na­tion.

“Se­na­tor Clin­ton did say that she pre­ferred that we make as our top pri­or­ity unit­ing to elect a Demo­cratic pres­i­dent in Novem­ber. She of­fered, how­ever, as an al­ter­na­tive that we work hard to elect more Democrats to the Se­nate.”

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