There are a number of stories out right now, like this one from US News, about how Clinton supporters are mad as hell at Obama and the Democratic Party for the sexism that Clinton had to endure during the campaign. The venom in the comments section of the above article is really breathtaking.
I am way, waaaaay unconvinced that Obama should apologize.
While there certainly were a whole lot of sexist comments in the mainstream media about Clinton, I don’t think that it is fair to blame Obama or the Democratic Party for that. Obama and the DNC do not control the mainstream news media. (And they *certainly* don’t control Fox!)
The only dismissive comment that I remember Obama making about Clinton was the “I like you okay, Hillary” comment, and he took heat for that. I think that Mr. and Mrs. Clinton both played much, much closer to the racism line (and they took heat for that).
Did Obama mean to be sexist? Probably not. Did the Clintons mean to be racist? Probably not. It’s a long campaign, people get tired, they make little slips, move on. I think the Clintons owe Obama much more of an apology for racism than Obama owes H. Clinton for sexism. I’m willing to forgive the Clintons; let’s move on.
There is also a lot of anger about the DNC “stealing” the Florida and Michigan votes. I think that everybody was very gentle with Clinton about that because it was clear that she was beaten, and nobody wanted to look like they were piling on. Let me be a bit more blunt: Obama didn’t “steal” Florida and Michigan, Clinton did! She wasn’t entitled to any of those votes, because of rules that she agreed to. Obama wasn’t even on the ballot, and didn’t campaign. It would have been surprising if a newcomer who wasn’t on the ballot had managed to get as many votes as someone with total name recognition who was on the ballot. The Florida and Michigan elections were not fair elections, and for her to keep insisting that she had won strained my patience with her.
Furthermore, while Hillary had to deal with sexism in the mainstream media, Obama has had to deal with an enormous amount of crap from rumour and innuendo. From the comments section: “I despise the MSM for not telling the voters the truth about Obama associations. He has no normal friends. terrorists,people full of hate for this country and i believe his wife is one of them.” or ” The same can be said for the President and Obama…. he has had bad company. He hangs out with Wright, Ferrakahn, etc….”
Um, excuse me? Didn’t B. Clinton pardon a bunch of sleazy people? Members of the FALN terrorist group? Mark Rich? Didn’t the Clintons associate with some very shady characters? Wasn’t B. Clinton’s own brother a cocaine addict? Me, I don’t think that it’s fair to judge people too harshly by what their associates do and particularly what their associates (e.g. Wright) say. We are all human, none of us is perfect.
I understand that Hillary backers are hurting. I understand that Hillary represented for them, a hope that our society had gotten past its misogyny. I understand, truly I do, and how crushing it can be to discover that no, it isn’t. But to blame Obama and the Democratic Party for that seems highly misplaced.