Friday, February 23, 2007

On The Other Hand: What Could Have Been

Sunday, December 27, 1942
By Combined Wire Services

WASHINGTON – While U.S. casualties continue to increase across the Pacific, and with a ground offensive recently initiated against Nazi-held North Africa, the president’s war plan to halt Germany's and Japan’s ambitions is under scrutiny by a skeptical Congress, with some members saying that President Roosevelt deliberately provoked a needless war against the two countries.

Nearly 13 months after the most damaging military attack on U.S. soil, the strike against Pearl Harbor, on the Hawaiian Island of Oahu, is now under Congressional investigation. In some quarters of Congress, there are concerns that the President may have either previously known about Japan’s plans to attack the U.S. base – or deliberately and clandestinely provoked a war with Japan, which forced Germany to declare war against the United States.

Worse, Roosevelt’s critics say, once he knew of Japan’s plans to strike Pearl Harbor, he refused to alert his military commanders, so U.S. forces in the Pacific would be caught by surprise. This would then gain U.S. public support for America’s entry into World War II, the president’s Congressional critics say.

Prior to the attack, the Gallup opinion poll said there was little domestic support for fighting either Japan or Germany. After Pearl Harbor, public opinion shifted drastically in favor of fighting both countries.

“If you look at FDR’s actions between 1940 and 1941,” said U.S. Rep. Martin Sweeney (D-OH), “he was trying to find a way to have Japan and Germany fight the United States.”

Shortly after the attack, Congress formed a joint Senate and House committee to investigate its causes as well as the administration’s policies toward Japan prior to the attack.

“We’ve come across a very interesting memo,” said U.S. Sen. Alben Barkley, (D-KY), who chairs the committee investigating the surprise attack. “It appears to confirm some concerns that the administration may have been overly aggressive in its approach to Japan” before it attacked Pearl Harbor.

The Senator would give few details about the note but described it as “written by a naval officer who appears to have great knowledge of the Japanese.”

The War Department would neither confirm nor deny the memo’s existence.

Congressional support for the Roosevelt Administration’s war policies is weakening, critics say, because of heavy U.S. military losses.

The Army and the Marines, battling Japanese troops on the Pacific Islands of New Guinea and Guadalcanal, have suffered thousands of casualties. In addition, the Navy has lost a number of ships, including five aircraft carriers, to the Japanese, this year.

Congressional critics say the United States, unprepared for war against Japan, was forced to surrender some of its most strategic Pacific possessions, including Wake and Guam Islands as well as the Philippines.

“Had our military commanders been better led by the President,” said U.S. Sen. Homer Ferguson, (R-MI), “there’s a good chance we would not have been forced to give up our strategic outposts in the Pacific.”

The loss of the Philippines was particularly devastating because 76,000 U.S. troops, the largest U.S. military force to ever capitulate in the country’s history, surrendered to the Japanese. Coincidentally, the troops surrendered on the 77th anniversary of the day that Confederate General Robert E. Lee ordered his army to lay down its arms to forces led by Union General Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox, Virginia, which ended the Civil War.

While the Navy stopped the Japanese at the Battle of the Coral Sea in May and again, in June, at the Battle of Midway, an archipelago just north of Hawaii, the losses for these two victories were costly, including hundreds of planes and two aircraft carriers. The other three U.S. aircraft carriers were lost during other Pacific battles against the Japanese.

Japan’s losses at the Battle of Midway, Navy intelligence says, were even higher, including four aircraft carriers, two cruisers, three destroyers and some small boats. Japan's losses have not been confirmed by Tokyo.

Another military success against Japan, although limited in its effect, included the bombing of Japan. Many of the operation’s details remain secret.

On the ground, however, the fighting situation is quite different. U.S. soldiers and Marines find themselves bogged down battling an entrenched enemy. U.S. losses on New Guinea and Guadalcanal are heavy – into the thousands – because Japanese troops, military commanders say, often fight to the death rather than surrender.

“I’m afraid a lot of people think the Jap is a ‘pushover,’” said Army Air Force Lt. Gen. George Kenney, who heads up the Allied Air Forces in the southwest Pacific. “We will have to call on all our patriotism, stamina, guts, and maybe some crusading spirit or religious fervor thrown in, to beat him.

“No amateur team will take this boy out. You take on Notre Dame, every time you play,” the general said.

Shortly after the mid-term elections, the Army landed troops in Algeria and Morocco to liberate North Africa from German occupation. The operation, under the command of Lt. Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower, if it is successful, will allow the Allies to move more freely around the Mediterranean Sea.

Prior to Germany’s declaration of war against the United States, diplomatic relations between the two countries had reached a stand-off, with the United States closing 24 German consulates across the country, saying they were havens for Nazi spies.

In addition, the United States loaned Great Britain 50 destroyers in exchange for 99-year leases on certain British Naval Bases, including those in Newfoundland, Bermuda and the West Indies.

“The destroyer trade was an ‘out-right declaration of war’,” said U.S. Sen. Gerald Nye, (R-ND). “It was a belligerent act that weakened our defenses.”

Seven months prior to the outbreak of war with Germany, the Navy started engaging the Third Reich’s submarines while escorting merchant ships sailing between the United States and Great Britain.

The United States even started supplying Great Britain with materiel it needed to survive Germany’s onslaught. The President defended U.S actions by saying, “If your neighbor’s house is on fire, you lend him your garden hose so your house is safe.”

“We were fighting Germany before the war even happened,” said Senator Ferguson. “It’s becoming quite clear that the President acted without Congressional authority to do that.”

(Writer’s note: This account is entirely fictional. Some of the information is accurate. This article is intended to be thought-provoking. Is it possible for anyone to understand the action’s any country takes during wartime? Are there any similarities between President Roosevelt’s actions, in his attempt to defeat fascism, and those of President George W. Bush, in his attempt to defeat the Taliban in Afghanistan and Saddam Hussein’s Iraq? Could World War II have ended differently?)

Friday, February 09, 2007

Why They're Running

With the U.S. presidential primary season about a year away, let’s review le raison d’ĂȘtra for the candidates seeking their party’s nomination for the nation’s highest political job as well as where the campaigns stand on financing.

U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton, (D-NY), the Democratic Party’s frontrunner, with more than $11 million in cash, according to Political Money Line, a unit of the Congressional Quarterly, is running so she can become her husband’s co-equal. It bothers her that Bill’s a former president while she’s only a senator.

She has more than twice as much money as U.S. Sen. Christopher Dodd, (CT), and has received, Political Money Line reports, nearly 27,000 individual campaign contributions. At this point in the campaign, Hillary is tough to beat. She has the organization, the money, and is owed many favors, so it’s highly unlikely that she’ll lose the primaries.

Dodd, in his fifth Senate term, is running for the nomination because he’s opposed to the Iraq War. He’s an excellent representative for Connecticut, but outside of the Nutmeg State, he’s hardly known.

Political Money Line reports that Dodd has nearly $5 million in his campaign but has received only 99 individual campaign contributions. Part of Dodd’s war chest, according to Political Money Line, comes from the money he has for his Senate campaign.

Dodd “sent a letter to the Federal Election Commission stating that he ‘is no longer a candidate in the 2010 election for the United States Senate in Connecticut,’” reports Political Money Line.

This allows Dodd to declare that his Senate campaign “has excess funds and transfer the funds to his presidential committee.” The Senate campaign, reports Political Money Line, had about $1.9 million as of the end of September 2006.

Dodd isn’t as calculating , crafty and conniving as Hillary. And his public speaking abilities pale in comparison to hers. Look for Dodd to be one of the first candidates to pull out of the primary.

John Edwards

Former U.S. Sen. John Edwards, (D-NC), is running because he wants another shot at the nomination. He was a loyal solider for his party during the last presidential campaign when he served as U.S. Sen. John Kerry’s running mate. The team failed, mostly because of Kerry, so Edwards figures the nomination is rightly his.

He’s also opposed to the Iraq War and his campaign will focus on “two Americas – one rich, one poor” like he did during the last presidential primary.

Edwards, figuring he better get a jump on the competition, has been campaigning since last summer. He comes across as a sincerely nice guy but also a bit of lightweight. It’s highly unlikely his candidacy will hold up for long against the competition.

Political Money Line reports that his Political Action Committee, One America Committee, had less than $9,000 in cash as of the end of January. There doesn’t appear to be any reporting, so far, on how much money his campaign has. This is likely due to the fact that he hasn’t officially declared his candidacy.

When Democrats go to the polls during the primary season, they’ll likely recall that Edwards was part of a losing presidential ticket in 2004 and, as a result, they’ll vote for someone else.

Joe Biden

U.S. Sen. Joe Biden, (D-DE), has been running for his party’s nomination, either overtly or covertly, since 1988. Perhaps Senator Biden should realize he’s a long shot – at best! – and give it up.

While Biden has done well with campaign contributions, about $3.6 million according to Political Money Line, it’s hard to figure out what this candidacy is all about. He’ll play up his his experience on the Senate’s foreign relations committee.

Given that background, along with his inability, so far, to wage a successful national campaign, plus his foot-in-mouth issues, Biden is more likely to become the next Secretary of State to a President Hillary Clinton than he is to become the country’s next President. Perhaps that’s what he really wants, the nation’s top diplomatic job.

Barack Obama

U.S. Sen. Barack Obama, (D-IL), is running – if he actually decides to run – to show the Democratic establishment that a good man can’t be kept down. He’s also seeks, and rightly so, to show that a black man can, indeed, be elected President.

The problem Senator Obama has is that he hasn’t been completely vetted in the same manner that his competitors have, especially Senator Clinton. If he declares that he’s candidate, he will have to survive some very harsh scrutiny, not only from the national media but also from his fellow Senate colleagues.

Obama stands out among his competitors because he’s a black man. This will make it easier for him to gain attention, which should translate into winning votes, if he decides to run. But, at this point, he doesn’t appear to be as well organized as Senator Clinton. Also, according to Political Money Line, his “Obama 2010 Inc” committee has just over $500,000.

That committee is established to help him run for reelection to the Senate in 2010. That money could also be used for any future presidential run he makes.

Evan Bayh

The true dark horse among the Democrats might be U.S. Sen. Evan Bayh, (D-IN) whose campaign is almost as well-healed as Hillary Clinton’s, with nearly $11 million in the bank, according to Political Money Line, as of December 31, 2006.

This means he’s organized, aggressive at raising money, and just might be the strongest alternative to Senator Clinton. The last part depends on whether he’s as good on the campaign trail as he has been getting his campaign financed.

The problem Bayh suffers from is that the national media isn’t paying attention to his campaign. Unless he can turn that around, he’ll go down as the most well-financed forgotten presidential candidate in recent years.

Bayh can certainly tout his experience as a two-term governor in a heavily Republican state. But other than that, there’s not much about his candidacy that’s going to get someone excited about him.

Bill Richardson

The last alternative to Senator Clinton is New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson, who served as President Clinton’s United Nation’s ambassador and was also his Energy Secretary. He’s former a presidential exploratory committee but has yet to declare his candidacy.

Among Democrats, and even Republicans, Richardson might be the politician with the most experience. He was a member of the House of Representatives for 15 years before going on to serve in the United Nations and then in President Clinton’s cabinet. As a result, he has both domestic and foreign policy experience.

His experience overseeing America’s energy issues shouldn’t be diminished. President Bush has said he’d like reduce the country’s oil consumption. Richardson could position himself as the presidential candidate who knows how to do that.

On personal issues, Richardson is also a very attractive candidate. He was born in California, an important state to win during the primary and general election. His mother was Mexican and word is that he’s fluent in Spanish.

The question about Richardson is will he generate any excitement.

Qualifications for Office

Qualifications don’t matter all that much to the electorate, during either the primary or general campaign seasons. If experience mattered, George H. W. Bush, with a background in business, diplomacy and Congress, would have taken the presidential oath on January 20, 1981.

Instead, Ronald Reagan, a former actor and former California governor, who campaigned on America’s inherit strength, became the nation’s 40th President. Successful presidential candidates, like Reagan, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, center their campaigns primarily around their personality.

They also evoke a visceral reaction among their supports as well as their detractors. If the American electorate thinks someone’s personality is a good fit for the nation’s challenges, and they find them likeable, there’s a high probability they’ll vote for that person.

The Republican line-up

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Guiliani, the hero of 9/11, is the man to beat for the Republican presidential nomination. Like his leading counterpart for the Democrats, Hillary Clinton, Rudy, as he’s known to friends and foes, is a controversial figure, evoking a visceral response.

And that just might make him the next president.

Guiliani, if he runs, will center his campaign around the leadership he demonstrated during the tragic day of September 11, 2001, and the weeks that followed before he left office. He’ll also talk up the fact that he knows how to run the country’s largest city as well as his experience as a former prosecutor who convicted one of the mob’s top kingpins, John Gotti.

So far, the only thing Rudy has announced is that he’s former a presidential exploratory committee. Political Money Line reports that he has more than $2 million from his former Senate campaign committee.

He raised more than $170,000 during 2006’s fourth quarter, Political Money Line reports, out-earning his two rivals, Sam Brownback and John McCain, significantly.

Like all political candidates, Guiliani’s background, and positions, make him vulnerable to the more strident, perhaps even pure, among his party. He’s been married three times and his last divorce, from New York City television talk show host Donna Hanover, was very public and very acrimonious.

Rudy’s position on a number of social issues, like gay marriage and abortion, is out of line with traditional Republican thinking. Still, at this point, he’s the man to beat for the nomination.

Rudy will tell the Republican faithful that he’s a Republican where it counts – winning in Iraq and Afghanistan and taking on the terrorists. Rudy hopes that his moderate positions on social issues, including stem cell research, will make him palatable to the electorate during the presidential campaign.

John McCain

Like Guiliani, U.S. Sen. John McCain, (R-AZ), is running as a candidate more concerned about defeating terrorists, whether they’re in Iraq and elsewhere, than he is in making abortion illegal.

McCain will nod and wink to the Republican faithful that he’s a conservative of social issues and, at the same time, will work hard to win the votes of social moderates by saying, in one way or another, that defeating terrorists outweighs abortion.

McCain, like Guiliani, is divorced and has since remarried. But unlike his fellow Republicans, and more than a few Democrats, he’s the only one candidate who’s served in the military. He’ll campaign, often, has a Vietnam War hero.

Mitt Romney

Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign, if he formerly enters the race, will center around his religion and how it does not prevent him from enacting and or signing legislation that the Church of Latter Day Saints opposes.

He’ll want to spend more time talking up his background as a leading business executive, as a governor and as the president of the 2002 Winter Olympics, held in Salt Lake City.

The son of a three-term Michigan governor, Romney sees himself, at least in business, as a turnaround specialist, having erased a “$3 billion budget gap inherited when he took office,” says the Web site touting his presidential exploratory committee.

The big question every Republican should ask Romney is why he left the Massachusetts governorship after only one term. He would be in a far stronger position had he remained in the job because it would allow him to tell primary voters that he’s a conservative in a liberal state – and found to be very acceptable.

He’s opposed to abortion and, like many a Republican, is looking for victory in the Middle East. Other top concerns include taxes, China and international trade.

Prior to entering public life, Romney had been an executive with consulting firm Bain & Company. His Political Action Committee, says Political Money Line, reports having around $185,000 on hand as of January 31, 2007.

Sam Brownback

U.S. Sen. Sam Brownback, (R-KS), holds the Senate seat of former U.S. Sen. Robert Dole. He’s a true-blue conservative in the mold of Ronald Reagan.

Brownback is probably the most conservative Republican in the primary. He’s an evangelical Christian and is opposed to gay marriage and abortion.

At this point, his campaign, according to Political Money Line, has around $40,000.00. He’s got a long way to go to catch up with the Former Mayor of New York.

Newt Gingrich

Lurking in the background among Republicans is former U.S. Speaker of the House, Newt Gingrich. He hasn’t declared his presidency but he certainly has a robust Web site. More on Newt next time.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Damsel in Distress or Iron Lady?

While U.S. Sen. Barack Obama, (D-IL), makes an interesting candidate for president – an attractive black man, as his Senate colleague Joe Biden said rather stupidly last week – the one who actually holds the cards to winning the nomination would likely make a far better chief executive.

U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton, (D-NY), evokes a visceral reaction among both her supporters and those who, without any diplomacy or tact, will tell anyone within listening distance that they hate her.

Since 1992, when she came onto the country’s national political scene, Hillary has been both a source of pride and contempt for the Democratic Party. She doesn’t play by the rules established for First Ladies, either current or former. And now, here she is, barely into her second term as a United States Senator, and she’s the one to beat for her party’s presidential nomination next year.

It’s just so unfair.

The only other First Ladies who were as close to being as controversial as Hillary include Rosaylnn Carter (she announced she’d join her husband for the Cabinet meetings); Betty Ford (she supported a woman’s right to choose); and Eleanor Roosevelt (who toured the country and stumped for her husband).

Had Senator Clinton been the traditional First Lady, her husband would remain in the spotlight – or in as much of the spotlight as former presidents receive – and she would confine herself to staying within his shadow.

But anyone who knows anything about Senator Clinton knows that’s not her style. She only retreats to lick her wounds and find another way to achieve victory.

During the 1992 presidential campaign, Hillary proudly announced that she didn’t stay home “and bake cookies.” While the comment may not have been intended as an insult to First Lady Barbara Bush, it certainly drew a distinction between the Baby Boomer and World War II generations.

(Bill Clinton was the first Baby Boomer to be elected President while George H.W. Bush was the last President to have served in the military during World War II.)

While her husband was Arkansas’ governor, Senator Clinton was a partner in the Rose Law Firm and, according to Wikipedia, she chaired the Arkansas Educational Standards Committee, the Rural Health Advisory Committee; she also introduced, according to Wikipedia, the Arkansas Home Instructional Program for Preschool Youth, “which trains parents to work with their children in preschool preparedness and literacy.”

The online encyclopedia also reports that the Senator was named Arkansas Woman of the Year in 1983 and Arkansas Mother of the Year in 1984. Her business experience, during her Little Rock days, included serving on the Board of Directors of TCBY, The Country’s Best Yogurt, and Wal-Mart stores.

Shortly after her husband won the presidential election, she was appointed to lead the presidential task force investigating ways to change the nation’s healthcare system. The task force met privately, making it an easy target for Republicans, which later helped them take control of Congress during the 1994 midterm elections.

After the healthcare plan, one of the single largest controversies surrounding Senator Clinton was the way she handled herself during President Clinton’s impeachment and subsequent trial as well as the way she stood by him after it had been revealed that he’d had an affair – a sordid, quick fling is a better description – with a White House intern.

Monica Lewinsky wasn’t the President’s first mistress; during the presidential campaign in 1992, Bill Clinton admitted that he’d damaged their marriage, perhaps more than once; while in the White House, it was reported that he’d had at least one another dalliance.

The Senator had two ways to handle this affair: She could walk out on him, thereby making her the first First Lady to ever divorce and/or separate from her husband; or she could stand by him, the option she chose.

Hillary’s decision reveals a lot about her. She may not have exactly had her eyes on the Senate in 1998, when the affair with Monica was made public. At the same time, it cannot be simply dismissed that she was not planning her post-White House years either. She said, more than once, that Bill Clinton did his thing and she did hers.

While she may have forgiven the president for his transgression with Monica – we’ll never really know – it’s also equally possible that she figured that Bill Clinton’s former wife would never have as much political cache as his current wife. And that was likely one of the reasons she stood by him.

Hillary also saw in Bill Clinton something she needed – a masterful politician to guide her through the trials and tribulations that any national and state-wide politician encounters. He had an ability to confound the Republican majority in Congress and look better after every assault launched against him. She knew, especially when she decided to run for the Senate, that his advice, knowledge and experience would be required to win the campaign.

Losing the Senate seat to a relative unknown, like U.S. Rep. Rick Lazio, was simply not an option. She had to win, especially if she wanted any kind of political future that wouldn’t require her to play second fiddle to her husband.

For that matter, Bill Clinton equally knew that to place his legacy in good standing, Hillary had to win. A Hillary victory, to Bill Clinton, is spawning a politician in his own mold, and it keeps him in front of the American electorate.

As she shown already, Hillary will make sure that no one can “out-left” her. The primaries are a time when the party faithful vote, so Hillary will do whatever is necessary to show them that she’s the Democrat they want returned to The White House. Her husband will campaign for her, too.

She’ll beat Barack Obama for this simple reason – there are politicians that owe her favors. After eight years in The White House, and more than six years in the Senate, there are governors and members of Congress who owe her (and her husband) in a way that they don’t owe Senator Obama.

Senator Obama will get there, but it will take a few more years than he’d like. Who knows, there’s a good chance he could wind up as Hillary’s running mate.

After she sows up the nomination, Hillary, in an attempt to capture the votes of independents and dispirited Republicans, will move to the center – at least in her speeches. She’ll essentially tell America that she’s tough on defense and illegal immigration; supports adoption (along with a woman’s right to choose); likes hunters (but supports tough hand-gun legislation); is tough on crime; supports environmental causes; and will say that the world’s perception of America needs to be improved. She’ll dance around Iraq and Afghanistan. If necessary, she’ll talk about a time-line to bring the troops home.

All of that just might secure a White House victory. But, of course, any presidential campaign with Hillary leading the ticket contains a very possible, and very serious, vulnerability. It’s her husband.

A vote for Hillary, Republicans will say, is a vote for Bill. (In fact, you can expect the Republicans to make Hillary to look live the Devil.) The Republicans will say President Clinton left the country vulnerable to terrorism (He had a chance to kill Osama bin Laden while he was in The Sudan but failed to take it) and they’ll remind the country that the Clinton Administration was once charged with selling high-tech secrets to China. And let’s not forget the impeachment hearings.

If Hillary survives this assault – and the Republicans stumble – she’ll likely be elected.

What Kind of President will she be?

Gender will play a role in how Hillary conducts herself in office. It’ll force her to be harsher in some areas, like national defense, and softer in others, like families and children.

As the first woman to become president, Hillary will need to prove, more so than the average male president, not that she’s about to surrender the country and its interests to some of our toughest enemies, like North Korea’s Kim Jong Il, Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, or Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez.

(Hillary was recently asked in Iowa if she had any background in dealing with “evil” men. Some interpreted the way she asked the question as an acknowledgement of having dealt with her husband, which she’s since denied. Even if we accept her denial at face value, let’s face it, she’s dealt with a husband who’s admitted to being less than faithful to his marriage.)

Hillary’s gender will force her to act tough when it comes to foreign policy, much in the same way it forced former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher’s hand. She had no choice but to retake the United Kingdom’s Falkland Islands after they’d been stormed by Argentinean troops in 1982. Failure to do so would have made Britain’s first female prime minister look feeble and incompetent on matters of national defense, something no female leader can afford.

In addition to Thatcher, there are other previous female world leaders Hillary can study for tips on how to approach certain issues. Sarah Baxter, a writer for the Sunday Times of London, reports that Hillary only needs to review the life and times of Israel’s Golda Meir and India’s Indira Gandhi to find out tough she can be on national defense.

Meir, Baxter reports, “authorized the assassination of Palestinian terrorist leaders and the annexation of conquered lands, and she led Israel in the 1973 Yom Kippur war.” Ghandi led India during its war with Pakistan.

Iraq and Afghanistan?

Hillary will deny, on a large stake of Bibles, that she has anything in common with former President Richard Nixon. She was a staff attorney on the Senate committee investigating Nixon over Watergate in the 1970s.

But she’ll borrow from the Nixon playbook when it comes to Iraq. Nixon knew that the domestic political climate didn’t support continued U.S. involvement in Vietnam; but he equally knew that he couldn’t be the first president to lose a war. He was in a bind.

So he started bringing the troops home while, at the same time, ordering far more aggressive attacks on Communist forces in North Vietnam and in Cambodia. By doing so, he looked tough on Communism (something he was known for) while also acknowledging that it was time for the United States to end its involvement in Vietnam.

Hillary will likely do something similar. She doesn’t want the enemies of the United States and Iraq’s current government to succeed, and likely, neither does the average American voter. But she’ll need to strike a balance between domestic desires and the harsh reality of Iraq. It’s my guess that she’ll bring some of the troops home (a way to keep the Democrats appeased) while continuing some kind of U.S. military presence in Iraq.

Afghanistan is a different story. It’s essentially a NATO operation but there are also U.S. troops in Afghanistan that are not under NATO command. This allows the United States to work with NATO allies while, at the same time, giving it the flexibility to conduct operations that may be questioned by its allies.

The operation in Afghanistan basically hides behind the one in Iraq; it will likely remain that way during the Hillary Clinton presidency.

If any of America’s enemies, like North Korea, Iran or Venezuela, start saber-rattling, expect Hillary to deal with the issue forcefully and effectively.

The one thing that people will soon notice about Hillary is that she’ll have an easier time making a decision than her husband, especially on issues of national security.

Domestic Issues

Hillary’s domestic politics can be summed up in this manner – she’ll support traditional Democratic causes whenever possible, like unions, abortion rights, domestic partnerships, but, at the same time, she’ll make every attempt to keep herself in the center, so she’s appealing to moderately conservative voters.

So, she’ll support a woman’s right to choose an abortion while supporting legislation that makes adoption easier.

Hillary will probably not want to deal with gay marriage, but she’ll certainly support domestic partnerships, enhancing them wherever possible.

She’ll talk up her religious faith on the campaign trail, when necessary, and she may even be inclined to continue the President George W. Bush’s program to give government money to faith-based charities helping the poor and downtrodden.

Hillary will be as conniving and as crafty as her husband. But I expect her to be a much more formidable executive than her husband, too. Once she makes a decision, even if it is controversial, she’ll likely stick with it.