OK, let me be perfectly clear - I am really tired of the assumption that Hillary will be the 2016 democratic presidential candidate and that - because she's a woman - she will win!
Yes, I think it's long over due for a woman to be in the White House. No, I don't think that alone is a reason to just bow down to Hillary. Gender alone does not qualify anyone for anything - as evidenced by John McCain's running mate in 2008.
While Hillary has shown herself to be very capable, she's also quite hawkish and too much of a corporatist for me. I also expect that if elected, she will drag the old Clinton economic gang (e.g. Larry Sommers, etc.) right back to further destroy any chance of restoring hope for the majority of citizens to realize the American economic opportunities that our parents had open to them.
The very fact that the first thing Hillary did after announcing was to launch a trip to visit with the "everyday people" says it all. She's so removed from the real world that most of us live in that she had to borrow a phrase from an old Sly & the Family Stone song to show how she's going to get in touch with us.
I want a candidate that will talk loud and strong about the economic and social impact of democratic vs. republican actions/policies/laws. Point out specific examples that have already impacted peoples lives.
I want a candidate that will talk loud and strong about the environmental impact of democratic vs. republican actions/policies/laws.
I want a candidate that has the guts to clearly and consistently express his/her progressive values instead of twisting and wordsmithing every comment to best fit with the results of the latest polls.
I want a candidate that speaks to ISSUES that impact everyone - jobs, wages, healthcare, environment, fairness, compassion, etc. Talk in such a way that every voter can see how the issues are impacting their own lives and why they need to vote democratic.
I want a candidate that is smart enough to know that messaging by special interest group (e.g. women, elderly, LGT, Christian, Hispanic, etc.) they are losing votes by causing people to vote against that one special interest topic with which they might not agree, instead of voting for the candidate that they agree with on the majority of issues that directly affect their lives. (Perfect example = Mark Udall. He spent all his campaign messaging on women's choice, said virtually nothing about the economic improvements that the Democrats had achieved since 2008. He ran away from Obama instead of emphasizing what has been achieved. He LOST the election to a person with extreme positions and actions that most people do not support!)
We absolutely can't afford for a republican to win the White House in 2016 or for them to hold majorities in Congress. There are good progressive prospects out there - Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders (though I'd hate to see them leave the Senate), Martin O'Malley, Sharrod Brown, and probably some others I'm not aware of yet.
It's time to stop buying in to the spin being pushed our way and work to make sure that there is a real progressive candidate on the ticket in 2016