“I am convinced that honoring Senator Clinton’s historic campaign in this way will help us celebrate this defining moment in our history and bring the party together in a strong united fashion,” said Senator Barack Obama. The statement said that Obama encouraged Senator Clinton’s name be placed in nomination as a show of unity, and as a gesture of recognition of her campaign.
Clinton also mentioned unity and electing Obama, “With every voice heard and the Party strongly united, we will elect Senator Obama President of the United States and put our nation on the path to peace and prosperity once again.” I think that there is nothing wrong with this gesture, and in fact, Clinton deserves it. In reality, all it amounts to is a small acknowledgement of her campaign.
I think supporters on both sides need to drop their grudges against the other. Yes, it would have been nice if Clinton would have gotten out of the race sooner, but people forget that Clinton stopped attacked Obama after he had the nomination wrapped up. It is clear now that Clinton stayed in for the sake of history, just so that she could say that she competed in all of the primaries.
On the other side, the Clinton people need to let it go. They lost. They weren’t supposed to lose, and in the beginning few people expected them to lose, but she did. I think what hurts some Clinton supporters the most is the sense that deep down inside they know that her campaign blew it. Many female Clinton supporters worry that Hillary Clinton was their best chance at seeing a woman elected president. I happen to not believe this. Maybe I am an optimist, but I think we will see a female president soon.
This gesture is designed to appease the minority of Clinton supporters who are still grumbling about Obama. Hillary Clinton will now be playing a large role at the convention, so I think short of winning the nomination, this should be enough to make them happy. The whole party unity story is a bit overblown anyway. It is certain that the party will be better in 2008 than it was with its apathetic support of Al Gore in 2008. No party is ever 100% unified, but I think that the Democrats will be strong this fall.