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Look, I know you've been with us for a long time. And I remember back in '92 how excited I was to cast my first vote for Bill, and how it was a fantastic thing to finally see a Democrat in the White House. I loved when you both started up Americorps, and the way the two of you were gonna bring in a new Democratic century. You were a great first lady, in the tradition of Elanor Roosevelt and Lady Bird Johnson - you actually put your shoulder to the wheel to move this country forward.

Well, needless to say, things faltered. I know Gingrich and the Repugs did everything to take you down, tore you up as much as they could, and dragged you through the mud even before you ran for political office. And it was a shame to see you shamed without cause, because you were fighting the good fight. And I can see, too easily, how your faith in the greater good must have been shaken by years of daily attacks against you.

I admire your strength - that you can stand up after 16 years of a non-stop conservative firing squad and make the strongest play for the Presidency that any woman has ever made in the history of the country. I can see how you feel you deserve this, and how painful it has to be to see it slipping out of your grasp.

I know you felt you had to become hard like them to weather their attacks, to compete in what has become an exceptionally ugly political battlefield.  

But the people behind you, the Democratic party, are not hard. We are, for what it's worth, the party of compassion. We look for leaders not that will drive their opponents from that battlefield, but rather, those that can take that battlefield and make it into a garden of new ideas and hope for everyone on it.

The really good ones can do it hand in hand with those who once were their opponents.

No matter how much the Repugs, the media, and you tell us we need a strong warrior at the helm, the biggest unifying theme behind the Democratic party is our inner conviction that it takes a leader of peace, vision, equality, and hope to bring prosperity to our country. And as much as an upstart as Obama may be, this is his message - that we CAN work it out - that we don't have to be at war all the time, that war, even political war, isn't necessary to bring us into the future.

Yes, in fighting as hard and well as you have, you've shown us that you're a fighter. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, but what we want and desperately need now is a leader. And unfortunately, when we look at what you've chosen to fight for, it calls into question your judgment. Here, to make it simple, is where you've blown it with me:

  1. Your initial vote to authorize war with Iraq
  1. Your refusal to apologize for your vote to go war with Iraq, excusing it by effectively saying you "acted on the intelligence you had at the time"
  1. Your vote to authorize force against Iran, especially considering the "intelligence" you have now about how the Bush administration operates
  1. Praising McCain over Obama - you didn't just hurt Obama here, you began the process of blackmailing and backstabbing the party that would have brought you to victory, and made it clear that if you didn't win, you'd make sure that no Democrat could
  1. Blowing your campaign finances - I'm sorry, but if I can't trust you to run your campaign in a fiscally responsible manner, I certainly can't trust you to run the economy of my country
  1. Flat out lying about the sniper fire. Then lying about the lie. And then trying to distract attention from it by bringing up Wright again.

Hillary, I'm sorry. I've admired you in the past. But after this, I cannot vote for you - I will not vote McCain if you win the nomination, but I cannot vote for you.

Because you will have lost the war you've been fighting for the past 16 years. You see Hillary, the war they fought wasn't against you - it was for who you are. And you've almost lost that battle - you've become their greatest tool for destroying the chance that a Democratic administration will take office when Bush finally leaves.

Do you really think the party will nominate you in 2012 if you kneecap Obama's chances now? Not a chance. We will remember, and if we have to suffer through another four years of neo-conservatism because of your ego, trust me, your legacy will be dragged deeper through the mud than Nader's.

But, on the other hand, if you bow out now, it's going to demonstrate some very important things. First, you DO have the best interests of the country in mind, which is the first litmus test for any presidential candidate. Secondly, you CAN be a team player, and work with the Democratic party instead of riding it like a mule. Third, you'll have a seat of power and honor within a Democratic Congress under a Democratic administration. You will have a real chance at truly bringing forth the solutions and programs you worked so hard to try and implement under your husband's administration.

So please Hillary, let it go. Yeah, it sucks that it didn't work out this time around, but don't shoot us in the back or yourself in the foot anymore. Trust me, if you can bring yourself around and see how the landscape is changing, you can come out on top of this a fair sight better than clinging onto the faint hopes of your ambitions for this cycle.

Originally posted to Mercutio on Tue Mar 25, 2008 at 03:02 PM PDT.

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What was the last straw for you with Hillary?

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