Jewish World Review Nov. 8, 2004 / 25 Mar-Cheshvan 5765
MEMO TO HILLARY
Many readers will not believe this, but I am trying to look out for Sen. Hillary Clinton. She's a fellow American who badly wants to be president, but based upon the vote a few days ago, Britney Spears has a better chance than Hillary of achieving that. Unless, of course, Mrs. Clinton follows my advice.
John Kerry lost the election because he did three major things wrong: First, he refused to allow Americans to get to know him. He was the soundbite king, but who the heck is this guy? Dr. Phil couldn't even get Kerry to open up. The folks couldn't get a handle on the senator.
Secondly, Kerry did not have an alternative plan to counter the chaos in Iraq. You could go to his Website all day long, but there was little he was going to do differently than President Bush. And Americans don't want to go to anybody's Website to get answers to questions. They want you to look them in the eye and tell them what you're going to do. Kerry didn't do that.
And third, John Kerry's progressive pals in the media killed him. Most Americans don't want arrogant movie stars and partisan fanatics ramming stuff down their throats. I understand that talk radio is the epicenter for that, but you choose to dial those programs up. When newspapers and entertainment shows begin unfair attacks on any American, there is always a backlash.
So Hillary Clinton would be wise to think about the above. Right now she is perceived as being even further left than Kerry. She has lots of pals in Hollywood, and the progressive media loves her. She rarely gives interviews to journalists who will ask tough questions, and few know what makes her tick.
That's John Kerry's recipe, and it's a loser. I thought that John Edwards would be competition for Hillary in the 2008 democratic primaries, but the Kerry campaign put him into the witness protection program, and he all but disappeared during the campaign. Edwards has brains and talent, but his luster has been diminished big time. It's Hillary's nomination to lose.
But lose she will if she continues running as a secular progressive. It should be obvious to everyone short of the Dixie Chicks that Americans want to maintain a traditional society based on Judeo-Christian philosophy. This time around, 11 states voted on gay marriage, and 11 states rejected it. And even multiple reruns of "Will and Grace" aren't going to change that situation.
So here's my advice to Hillary Clinton: Morph into a modern version of June Cleaver. You don't have to wear a dress every day and be deferential to your husband, but you do have to show Americans that you could live on their block without Secret Service agents keeping everyone 50 yards away. You have to demonstrate some kind of rapport with the folks. Right now, millions of Americans think you played a primary role in "Rosemary's Baby." You're a devil to those on the right, and in traditional precincts you are distrusted and sometimes loathed. You must change that.
Pandering to your left-wing base is not going to cut it anymore. The progressive left has become detached from working America. Ralph Nader got nine votes, OK? Traditional values and a respect for normalcy is the prevailing wisdom during a time of terrorism.
Frankly, I don't know if Hillary Clinton can pull this off because I simply don't know anything about her, even though I read her book. She remains guarded and remote, a woman of intellect but not of definition. Exactly what does Hilary Clinton stand for besides massive government entitlements? I don't know, and you probably don't either.
So reruns of "Leave It to Beaver" should be on the Clinton TV screen in both Georgetown and Chappaqua. The senator should spend some time at Wal-Mart and Sam's Club. She should dish at Dunkin' Donuts and Wendy's, ride a bike once in a while and maybe even vacation in Florida. Americans generally like their leaders to have something in common with them. John Kerry did not. George W. Bush did. Hillary, I'm looking out for you. Get the "Everybody Loves Raymond" makeover. Right now.
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JWR contributor Bill O'Reilly is host of the
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© 2004 Creators Syndicate