Bil Browning

Way to go Shakes!

Filed By Bil Browning | February 03, 2007 1:04 PM | comments

Filed in: Politics
Tags: election 2008, John Edwards, Melissa McEwan, presidency, Shakespeare's Sister

I'm finally free to spill the beans! Melissa McEwan, more commonly known as Shakespeare's Sister, has joined the John Edwards presidential campaign as the Netroots Coordinator. Shakes and I e-mailed back and forth about her decision to join Edwards's team and I have offered her my congratulations privately already. But let me also do so publicly because this is stupendous for Edwards's team and, I'll admit, gets me to give him another look.

Shakes describes her decision to sign on board:

As for The Big Question: Why Edwards? A lot of reasons, none of which I've been too shy about sharing as my personal support for him has increased over the last months, although you can read more in my first Edwards blog post here. I will, however, mention the three little words that ultimately got me: "I was wrong." That's how John Edwards started his Nov. 13 op-ed in the Washington Post, referring to his Iraq war vote. "I was wrong," he said, and more than that: "I take responsibility for that mistake. It has been hard to say these words because those who didn't make a mistake--the men and women of our armed forces and their families--have performed heroically and paid a dear price. ... [A] key part of restoring America's moral leadership is acknowledging when we've made mistakes or been proven wrong--and showing that we have the creativity and guts to make it right." I don't need a president who never makes mistakes; those don't even exist. I need a president who's willing to admit them. Those have been in short order as of late, you may have noticed.

Quite some time ago, a staffer for another then-potential presidential candidate called me to pick my brain about what it would take to get my support. One of the things about which I was most adamant was that the candidate had to say, quite plainly, that s/he was wrong on Iraq. The staffer ran a couple of options by me: "What if s/he said this? What if s/he said that?" I said what I wanted to hear was "I was wrong."

John Edwards gave me what I wanted. And I believe he offers America what it needs.

Pretty persuasive... I wonder how many of the other candidates have offered that admission? (Dennis Kucinich, of course, wouldn't have to - he didn't vote for it.) I did catch the following video of Edwards at yesterday's DNC Winter Meeting. He sounds like a credible candidate, I'll admit. And the crowd loves him.

Bill Richardson is my personal favorite. There's a guy with the experience to be President. He's been a Congressman, a Governor, Secretary of Energy, Ambassador to the UN, was Clinton's Special Envoy and has been nominated four times for the Nobel Peace Prize for negotiating the release of hostages, American servicemen and political prisoners in North Korea, Iraq, and Cuba. Governor Richardson recently negotiated a 60-day cease fire in war-torn Darfur following direct talks with rebel leaders and the President of Sudan. I could respect the President again. What a thought...

Who do you have your eye on? What do you think of Richardson?

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According to Susan Estrich, the only way for this country to meaningfully advance in the fight against sexism is to elect a woman as President. The fight is at a standstill. The Presidency for +200 years has been an institutional poster-child for patriarchy and its ills. It's time to have a woman in office. Period.

Thanks for sharing this clip of Edwards. I love all of the top four candidates so far. I love that we have great choices this time around. I had been leaning to Hillary but I must say I was moved by Edwards speech. I think he will be more left than the others. It will be a fun debate season, that's for sure.

I also have come to respect Edwards, if for no other reason than that he has the balls--no offense, ladies--to say what is necessary. He is blunt and truthful; maybe too much so for his own good.
I cannot in good conscience support Hillary simply because she is a woman. Although she has a pretty good domestic agenda--something that most other candidates lack--her foreign policy views frighten me. She is just too Imperial in a military way for me.

Ok.. the primary season is so jam-packed.. and will be even more so once NJ, CA, IL and more move their primaries into March... that the debate will be truncated. We'll know by the end of March who the Dem Candidate is...

My Vote would be for Richardson due to the Nevada caucus in between Iowa and New Hampshire.

Sue, who do you consider the top four candidates? Of course there's Hillary and Barack. I'm assuming you're putting Edwards in the top tier, but who's your fourth?

Carrie, it's interesting that you brought that up. Sometimes you sound just like the conversations around our house. Jerame also thinks that "It's time to have a woman in office. Period." I, however, don't like that type of reasoning - it's what has given us all the men for the past 200+ years: "We have to have a man in office. Period."

I won't vote for Hillary just because she's a woman. If we're going solely based on gender it's discrimination - only reverse this time - and two wrongs don't make a right. I think that there are tons of women who are qualified to run our country, I'm just not sure that Hillary is the one. As I explained to Jerame yesterday, it still seems like carpet-bagging how she went from being the Arkansas first lady to "real" First Lady to Senator from New York. New York was an easy seat to pick off - even though she wasn't from New York. It was political opportunism. And I'm not sure that "opportunism" is the quality that I want in a President. Honesty, trustworthiness, and intelligence, yes. She has the intelligence - no doubt about it. It's her trustworthiness that worries me.

Richardson, I believe, solves a couple of problems for the Democrats. With Hillary and Barack running, the media has been all over "Our first woman president" or "our first black president," but Richardson would be our "first Hispanic president." With the Hispanic population growing by leaps and bounds these past few years (and with W making inroads into the Hispanic voting base) it's more important than ever for Democrats to shore up this base as well. Not only would we get some diversity, we could get votes based on it. And someone correct me if I'm wrong, but don't Hispanics vote more often than African-Americans? As a percentage?

Plus, the guys has enough experience to be three presidents. Nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize four times? That's pretty darn good company, if you ask me.

Are You Serious? | February 5, 2007 9:42 AM

New York was an easy state to pick off? Are you kidding me? What rock were you hiding under?

Her first Senate race was hateful and mean-spirited. National Republicans threw everything but the kitchen sink at her...pruvat einvestigators roamed the country for tidbits to use in commercials. It was vilee. She endured much.

And, in their quiet honest moments, senators from both sides of the aisle will tell you the three or four senators they most admire, and that list will always include Teddy and Hillary Political views aside, she has been an excellent senator, almost a national senator, in a sense.

Her foreign policy depth is sufficient, although it's not her strong suit. That can be mollified by a running mate and/or a strong cabinet.

Jeses Jehosephat, Bush had zero foreign policy experience, and after he stole the 2000 election, he proved he was internationally ignorant and gutless.

Hillary is a polarizing figure. But, I have no doubt she possesses the cerebral mass to know when she's in over her head on any issue, and seek competent advice.

My single-biggest Hillary concern is Bill. He's a campaign asset, but, unless you're completely blind, he obviously chases skirts big-time. Why she hasn't divorced his sorry ass is beyond me, and that is an error in judgment that reeks of opportunism. He was a great policy president, but I expect more form the LOTFW (Leader of the Free World) than brains...and using an intern as a humidor in the oval office, for Christ's sake.