Here We Go

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will reportedly announce her presidential candidacy this weekend via Twitter:
Hillary Clinton is planning to officially launch her US presidential campaign on Sunday while en route to Iowa, a source familiar with the campaign has confirmed to the Guardian.

The former secretary of state is scheduled to declare her second run for president on Twitter at noon eastern time on Sunday, the source told the Guardian, followed by a video and email announcement, then a series of conference calls mapping out a ... tour beginning in Iowa and looking ahead to more early primary states.
black and white iconic image of Hillary Clinton looking at her cell phone while wearing shades, to which I've added text reading: 'RUNNING 4 PRES #YOLO PLEASE RT'


Cons: Clinton is a consummate modern Democratic politician. Which means she's way more conservative on many issues that I am (and most of this readership is): She's a corporatist, an opportunist, not committed to full transparency, and way more hawkish on foreign policy than I want any president to be (though I am keenly aware that peaceniks don't get elected). She's not great at talking about race and racism, always sounding awkward and unnatural like she's really trying hard to avoid saying the wrong thing, at a time when we really need a president who can speak confidently on racial issues.

That's not a complete list, but it's a few of my major concerns. And, to be fair to Hillary Clinton, most of them are concerns I would have about virtually any Democratic candidate. But that doesn't make them any less concerning.

The last time Hillary Clinton ran for president, I was alternatingly accused of being in the bag for Hillary Clinton, and being insufficiently supportive of Hillary Clinton, so let me just lay out what things are going to look like around here, regarding her candidacy, and y'all can manage your expectations accordingly: I am going to staunchly, unapologetically defend Hillary Clinton from the unfathomable torrents of misogyny which will be disgorged by both conservatives and progressives who can't be bothered to criticize her on the issues; I am going to be excited and invigorated by Hillary Clinton and her campaign; I am going to be depressed by and frustrated with Hillary Clinton and her campaign.

And if she happens to win, just substitute "presidency" for "campaign."

In 2008, just before President Obama was elected, just before I happily cast my vote for him, I wrote:
Obama's candidacy has been, for me, a continuing lesson on what are and what are not mutually exclusive concepts. Being unthrilled about certain policy positions and tactics, sometimes unthrilled even to the point of feeling like we're taking a step backwards, and regarding his candidacy as yet a step forward in other ways, aren't mutually exclusive.

Reconciling that with my tendency to view candidates as either singularly Progressive or Not Progressive has been an important learning experience for me.

That's not a "lesser of two evils" argument; it's not a comment about compromise, or balance, or taking what we can get, either. It's about coexistence and complexity, and opening myself up to both in a way I haven't before—in no small part because I've never had the need nor the chance, offered as I've been prior to this election only straight, white, wealthy men who were symbols of nothing but social stagnation at the upper levels of our government.

For a long time, I wasn't quite sure how to work out what to make of this opportunity given to me, to see forward and backward and running in place so vividly all in the same candidate. (I certainly would have had the same problem if Clinton had ended up our nominee.) But moving into a space where I can simultaneously feel desperately excited about the forward, while feeling the usual disappointment and occasional fury about the same old and back, has been good. And liberating.

It feels like the first time you really understand how to keep loving someone even after you've seen their flaws.

It's almost like I'm a real grown-up or something.
All of those expressed sentiments were truer and more active parts of my thought, four years later. They are still. And I still have great expectations.

Because I am an optimist, a cynic, a cheerleader, and a critic. I can be all of these things, just like Hillary Clinton will delight and disappoint me.

And no matter what, I am going to push back with all of my might against misogyny unleashed at her, because that's how feminism works.

So strap in, y'all. Here we go.

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