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Bill Clinton Hits A Grand Slam At The Democratic National Convention!

Coming off two nights where the Washington Nationals managed to hit six home runs for two games in a row, something that has only been done twice before in major league baseball history, another “former” resident of Washington, DC, former President Bill Clinton, looked as if he was part of the Washington Nationals lineup last night at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina!

In baseball lingo, we could say that Bill Clinton hit a grand slam home run, as he defended the Barack Obama performance in office; linked his own time in office with that of his Democratic successor; showed the hypocrisy of Paul Ryan on policy and was laudatory toward Vice President Joe Biden’s contribution to the Obama Presidency; and destroyed the idea of Mitt Romney that the answer is to go back to the failed policies of the Bush Administration which got this nation in the economic mess it is in, which Clinton said no President in the past could have rectified completely in just four years!

Clinton, a masterful and charismatic orator, excited the convention, adding to the drama of this gathering, in a way that was very special and unique. The dynamism and electricity of the thousands of delegates and guests could be felt in every home that tuned in to the dramatic 45 minute address, much of it ad lib, by a man who has had his ups and downs historically, but is now riding a wave of popularity in the mid 60s in public opinion polls.

If Bill Clinton could convince white working class males to think of their future, instead of the appeal to their prejudices by the Republican Party, then he will have vindicated his goal of moving his party and the nation toward a continuation of the Obama Administration, which has much to be proud of, and has, indeed, made America a better nation than it was four years ago.

So Bill Clinton reminded us, that despite much work left to do, we are “better off” than we were four years ago, an old refrain used by Ronald Reagan, who attacked Jimmy Carter in 1980, on the basis that we were NOT better off, and managed to convince the country to elect him, not realizing that Reagan would pursue economic policies that would start the decline of the American economy and help to cause the massive government debt, mostly occurring under Republican Presidents Reagan and the two Bushes.

Only Clinton was able to balance the budget several times, slowing up the debt’s growth, and actually leaving a surplus for George W. Bush, which was then squandered by two wars in Iraq and Afghaniatan, a Medicare prescription drug plan unpaid for by taxes, and a policy of deregulation of Wall Street which led to the Great Recession of 2008, all thrown into the lap of Barack Obama in 2009, creating the worst economic times since Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Great Depression in the 1930s!

Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels: The “Phantom” Republican Candidate For President

Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels has been gaining a lot of newsprint lately, hailed by George Will and David Brooks as the “best” candidate that the Republican Party could run for President.

Daniels has been coy about such a candidacy, saying that his family is not thrilled about his running, and that he has an important job facing him, as he continues as Governor of the Hoosier State.

But let’s look at Daniels and see what his positives are, to an outside observer.

Daniels has correctly brought attention to what he calls the new “Red Menace”, the term used in the struggle against Communism in the past. The new “red” is red ink, he declared, at the Conservative Political Action Conference, in what was called the best speech given by anyone at that gathering.

Daniels also suggested that the Republicans stop pursuing their social agenda on gay marriage and abortion, and focus on the economic crisis the nation faces, an idea which turned off social conservatives.

Daniels came across at that conference, and has otherwise, as rational and reasonable, and has avoided controversial statements and actions, unlike many of the other potential GOP candidates for President. He is, obviously, an intelligent, thoughtful man, which is a definite plus.

However, he has negatives as well as positives, including:

1. He lacks charisma, is not photogenic, and is only 5 feet 7 inches tall, none of it really important, but can be perceived as negatives for a Presidential candidate.

2. As Indiana Governor, as far back as 2005, he ended collective bargaining in the state by executive order, an action which is now seen as a negative in the middle of the controversy going on in several Midwestern states, most notably Wisconsin, but which has created new problems in Indiana, with demonstrations and demands for change on that issue.

3. As Budget Director under George W. Bush, the budget went through the ceiling because of war in Iraq and Afghanistan, plus an unfunded Medicare prescription plan, so his credentials on budgetary matters is compromised, when he speaks out on that issue now.

This whole discussion may be just an academic exercise, if Daniels decided not to run. In any case, were he to enter the race, it would, at the least, raise the level of intellectual discussion in the Republican Party, which right now has a list of potential candidates who seem more interested in controversy and confrontation than serious discussion of the important issue facing the nation, with the exception of Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman!