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View Diary: Here's to hope (191 comments)

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  •  Yes, he's the future, because he's a uniter (none)
    Who knows whether we'll ever have a President Obama, but I do think he represents the future of the Democratic Party, as Kos said, because he can appeal to the best in all decent Americans.  This beautiful speech shows that and gives me hope.

    Let's face it: Bush won, and we can't blame Kerry's loss on low turnout, the Electoral College, Osama bin Laden, or 1973 typewriters.  He lost because he was not able to forge a strong enough emotional connection to the majority of the voters.

    America is a pretty conservative country, and it's a democracy (more or less), where the majority rules (usually) -- so regardless of whether you yourself are a Clintonite or a Trotskyite, you should recognize that a successful Democratic presidential candidate has to reach a solid majority of the citizens.  That means he has to connect to the hearts, faith, and imagination of decent conservatives (no, politics is not and can never be purely "reality-based").  Obama's speech shows us the way: recall the founding principles of this nation and point to the things we care about in common, the things that transcend party divisions.  Bush won, despite his divisive tactics and uninspiring personality, because more than 50% of the population felt closer to him than to Kerry.  But if we had someone who could truly bridge the cultural divide and get past the "memes," we could win a decisive victory.  (In case it isn't obvious, I disagree with those who say we should follow the Howard Dean model now.  Dean would have been completely crushed.)

    On the question of whether a black man can be president, I think Colin Powell could conceivably have done it.  Call me a reckless optimist, but again, if you find someone who can actually reach out across the cultural gap, then traditional animosities can break down.  (John McCain is another example -- too bad he and Powell chose to support such a divisive president!)

    Keep working and hoping, everyone.  And eat lots of chocolate.

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