Monday, August 4, 2014

Would Some Other Democrat Please Run for President?

I'm ok with having Hillary as President. I imagine I will be voting for her, whether the Republicans nominate Ted Cruz or someone more reasonable. But can't we at least have a nomination contest? So far Hillary has managed to position herself as the inevitable nominee without taking any position on marijuana legalization, Sherrod Brown's too-big-to-fail bank bill, Obama's regulation of CO2 emissions from power plants, religious exemptions from gay marriage bills, and all sorts of other relevant stuff. Shouldn't somebody demand that she say what she thinks about the issues she would face as president?

I expect that I will be happy enough with Hillary's domestic policies: she will defend health care reform and work to improve it, she has what I consider reasonable ideas about budgets and taxation, and so on. She is committed to real equality for women, and given the rolodex she has built up through 25 years of networking with female leaders I expect she will set records for the appointment of women to government office.

I am quite unhappy with her foreign policy instincts. These days she dismisses her vote for the Iraq war as a "mistake," but I think it was an expression of her real position. She was a big supporter of the Libya intervention, wants to do more in Syria and Iraq, and seems ok with attacking Iran to protect Israel. She is a liberal interventionist of the most aggressive sort, as are the women she helped bring into power in the Obama administration. She is far too bellicose for me. Which is why we need a peacenik to run against her for the Democratic nomination. That way she would be forced to take positions that might moderate her actions in office, for example she might have to promise never to send American troops to Syria.

Plus, isn't there something embarrassing about a Democratic contest without a progressive candidate? With Elizabeth Warren out, is there really nobody?

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