This shouldn’t surprise anyone.
Despite all Barack Obama’s religious controversies during the past few months—the Rev. Jeremiah Wright; rumors that he’s really a closet Muslim; the Rev. Jeremiah Wright; Luttwak’s he’ll-be-assassinated op-ed; the Rev. Jeremiah Wright; an endorsement from Hamas and claims he’ll abandon Israel; the Rev. Jeremiah Wright; the perception Jews don’t trust him; and, finally, Father Michael Pfleger’s outburst—Obama is one concession speech away from battling John McCain for the presidency.
Slate reports that not only has Obama beaten Hillary Clinton, but he’s slain Clintonism:
Now that Barack Obama has the nomination wrapped up, everyone will be looking for the symbolic moment when he takes Clinton’s hand and they raise their arms together. This is the traditional sign of party unity. This year it may not be enough to start the bygones era, given the charges of sexism and racism that have been traded between the campaigns and the number of Clinton fans promising to nurse their embers of grievance. Maybe raised arms won’t be enough, and we’ll need to see a hug or a kiss on both cheeks.
In the pageant of reconciliation, Clinton, who has promised to campaign vigorously for Obama, will be repeatedly asked about her claims that he lacked the credentials to be commander in chief and would not be able to defeat John McCain. That will be hard enough for her. But it’s not all. Unlike other second-place finishers who have merely had to sublimate their own ambition, Clinton will have to engage in the eclipsing of her husband’s presidency and its legacy, which has largely defined the Democratic Party for the last 15 years.
At The New Republic, Michelle Cottle offers this farewell to Hillary Clinton:
There’s little doubt that it is time—arguably well past time—for Hillary to cede the field. Lingering would only damage the party in which she clearly aspires to have a future. More selfishly, I’ll admit to being exhausted of listening to Hil’s outraged critics imbue her every word and action with the most venal motives imagineable. (Oh my God! She must be hoping some nutjob supporter will take the RFK hint and assassinate Obama!)
But even now I am sad to see her go. Or rather, I am sad that things turned out such that she so clearly has to go. I emailed a handful of her advisors today about what they considered to be the highlights of this primary-what moments made them the proudest of their campaign or candidate. Only a few responded, and only one response stuck with me. Referring to this evening’s much-discussed presser, and on the clear assumption that Hillary will concede, an advisor wrote back: “I think I will be incredibly proud of her tonight.”
It’s enough to make a grown woman cry.