Among the sociological data gathered by pollsters for the primary race is this tidbit: older women—meaning Hillary Clinton’s peer group—are taking our sweet time making up our minds. Until the moment we walk into the voting booth, we’re likely to be undecided. Yup—that’s me. So far I’ve gone from supporting Edwards to Clinton to Obama and back again to Clinton.
This isn’t like me at all; I usually know who I’m voting for from Day One, and stick with him (except for Geraldine Ferrarro, it’s always been a him) until I pull the lever, or touch the screen, or darken the circle with my pencil. A few elections ago I even began absentee voting, sending my ballot in weeks before E-Day.
So what changed? We have more than one viable candidate, that’s what changed. Usually I hold my nose and vote for the lesser of two evils, but this time I’ll be voting for someone rather than against someone else. I know this oughtta be cause for celebration, but frankly, I’m pissed. Finally we have a serious female contender, and this guy, this Obama character, comes charging in on a silver horse, chanting change change change. Couldn’t the kid wait? He’s only 46 for crying out loud. It’s our turn, dammit!
That’s how I’m feeling today. My thinking seems to shift from day to day in response to the candidates’ behavior, or who’s supporting who. This is no way to choose a president. But since there seem to be no substantial policy differences between Clinton and Obama, it has to come down to style—which, contrary to what the pundits might say, is not superficial. For instance, I was listening to a news story about the Nitwit’s No Child Left Behind folly, and I suddenly envisioned Hillary at the helm, summoning all the brilliant educators she knows, starting with Marian Wright Edelman, founder of the Childrens Defense Fund and one of Hillary’s best friends. I thought to myself, “Hillary will know how to reform the educational system.” So this morning I stand proudly alongside Maxine Waters and Gloria Steinem in support of Senator Hillary Clinton, about to be elected the first woman President of the United States.
But don’t hold me to that.