Robert Reich Endorses Barack Obama

Apr 18 2008 Published by under Featured News

It has to feel like the walls are starting to close in for Hillary Clinton, as today the man who was the Secretary of Labor under her husband’s administration, Robert Reich, endorsed Barack Obama.

On his blog Reich wrote about his own perceived lack of importance about his endorsement and his friendship with the Clintons. “The formal act of endorsing a candidate is generally (and properly) limited to editorial pages and elected officials whose constituents might be influenced by their choice. The rest of us shouldn’t assume anyone cares. My avoidance of offering a formal endorsement until now has also been affected by the pull of old friendships and my reluctance as a teacher and commentator to be openly partisan. But my conscience won’t let me be silent any longer.”

He wrote that Clinton’s policy proposals were solid, but Obama’s were even more solid, “Although Hillary Clinton has offered solid and sensible policy proposals, Obama’s strike me as even more so. His plans for reforming Social Security and health care have a better chance of succeeding. His approaches to the housing crisis and the failures of our financial markets are sounder than hers. His ideas for improving our public schools and confronting the problems of poverty and inequality are more coherent and compelling. He has put forward the more enlightened foreign policy and the more thoughtful plan for controlling global warming.”

He discussed Obama’s new politics and his belief that Obama can transcend what divides us, “He also presents the best chance of creating a new politics in which citizens become active participants rather than cynical spectators. He has energized many who had given up on politics. He has engaged young people to an extent not seen in decades…he offers the best hope of transcending the boundaries of class, race, and nationality that have divided us. His life history exemplifies this, as do his writings and his record of public service. For these same reasons, he offers the best possibility of restoring America’s moral authority in the world.”

Reich also referenced Obama’s race speech, and as I look back, I think that speech was the moment that he won over many in the Democratic Party, and convinced them that he was ready to be president. So many party heavyweights have mentioned that speech specifically when endorsing Obama, that it can be concluded that it was that speech which lifted him from contender to nominee.

Reich is correct. Clinton for the most part has been solid and workmanlike in this campaign. Her biggest problem is that she ran into a special candidate, who has captured the imaginations of many Democrats. Reich’s endorsement won’t sway many voters, but it provides insight into the shift towards Obama within the party.

Read Reich’s Full Endorsement:

Check out The Angry Scotsman Show for my full Pennsylvania predictions:

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