Monday, March 24, 2008

Richardson as Judas? Didn't I Tell You?

I don't think James Carville's to blame or that anyone should be shocked for hearing him talk out loud about what I'd imagine a lot of politically-aware Christian Democrats were thinking on Good Friday. The day I'd heard that Bill Richardson decided to endorse Obama, even I choked a bit on my fried fish and coleslaw and I'd said these very words:
"I just read that Bill Richardson decided to endorse Barack Obama after he heard Obama's major speech on race. [A bit of a betrayal and crucifixion for Richardson's former champion Hillary Clinton ..and done, most curiously, on Good Friday..I wonder if the name Judas is flying around the Clinton camp today? ]
Don't blame me, either. I'm not in either camp. I'm just a good Catholic girl who payed attention during her Religious Education classes. Substitute those 30 pieces for one sweet promise of a cherry position with Obama's administration (if Obama gets that far). Mmm-hmm. You know what I'm talkin' about, don't you? Bearded Bill threw his girl under the bus.

As for me, there's something oh-so-precious to be said about the value of loyalty when I examine the make-up of a man or woman's character.

James Carville expounds on the matter:

I believe that loyalty is a cardinal virtue. Nowhere in the world is loyalty so little revered and tittle-tattle so greatly venerated as in Washington. I was a little-known political consultant until Bill Clinton made me. When he came upon hard times, I felt it my duty -- whatever my personal misgivings -- to stick by him. At the very least, I would have stayed silent. And maybe that's my problem with what Bill Richardson did. Silence on his part would have spoken loudly enough.

Most of the stuff I've ever said is pretty insignificant and by in large has been said off the cuff and without much thought to the potential consequences. That was not the case in this instance. Bill Richardson's response was that the Clinton people felt they were entitled to the presidency. In my mind, that is a debatable hypothesis. But, even more than that, I know that a former president of the United States who appointed someone to two Senate-confirmed positions is entitled to have his phone calls returned.

If Richardson was going to turn on the Clintons the way he did, I see no problem in saying what I said. Because if loyalty is one virtue, another is straight talk. And if Democrats can't handle that, they're going to have a hard time handling a Republican nominee who is seeking the presidency with that as his slogan.

Disloyalty That Merits An Insult, WaPo op-ed