A Cautious Man
February 27, 2008
 
"With All Due Respect ..."
I've been reading critiques of the Democratic Debate last night, where the MSNBC moderators are being criticized as much as the candidates. Tim Russert seems to get the bulk of the criticism, but my favorite moment was actually the result of a Brian Williams question, at the end -

WILLIAMS: Well, we don't have such thing in our format as a closing statement, but I am going to ask a closing and fundamental question of you both. And I'll ask it of you fist, Senator Obama.

What is the fundamental question you believe Senator Clinton must answer along the way to the voters here in Ohio and in Texas, and for that matter across the country, in order to prove her worthiness as the nominee? And then we will ask the same question of Senator Clinton.

OBAMA: I have to say, Brian, I think she is -- she would be worthy as a nominee. Now, I think I'd be better. Otherwise, I wouldn't be running. But there's no doubt that Senator Clinton is qualified and capable and would be a much better president than John McCain, who I respect and I honor his service to this country, but essentially has tethered himself to the failed policies of George Bush over the last seven years.

On economics, he wants to continue tax cuts to the wealthy that we can't afford, and on foreign policy he wants to continue a war that not only can we not afford in terms of money, but we can't afford in terms of lives and is not making us more safe. We can't afford it in terms of strategy.

So I don't think that Senator Clinton has to answer a question as to whether she's capable of being president or our standard bearer.

I will say this, that the reason I think I'm better as the nominee is that I can bring this country together I think in a unique way, across divisions of race, religion, region. And that is what's going to be required in order for us to actually deliver on the issues that both Senator Clinton and I care so much about.

In other words, he said to Brian Williams, basically, "With all due respect, you can take your question and shove it up your ..."

I think Senator Clinton is lucky that he was asked this question first, so she had the chance to be just as gracious, and not fall into the anchors' last trap.

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