Special to the Dresden Mills Gazette. Sunday, January 27, 2008. This interview was held in cyberspace on this date, the day after Senator Barack Obama won a decisive victory over Senator Hillary Clinton in the South Carolina Democratic primary, beating her by more than two to one. The interviewer for the Gazette was Wesli Court, political editor for our news sheet.
Gazette. Mr. President, it would appear that Senator Obama’s campaign is far from dead, as you have sometimes intimated it ought to be. He has, in fact, taken a major step toward becoming the first Black President in U. S. history. How do you respond to such an event?
Clinton. I don’t respond. It’s a joke. You people of the media just love to jump to conclusions that don’t exist. There’s no way Senator Obama can ever be the first Black President.
Gazette. That’s an astonishing remark. How can you make it?
Clinton. Because I was the “first Black President.” Ask anybody. Ask anyone who’s black, in fact. They’ll all say that I was the first Black President.
Gazette. I know that’s a claim that has been made, but you’re not ethnically or racially Black, so the claim is moot.
Clinton. No, it is not.
Gazette. Then why did practically all of the registered Black Democrats in South Carolina vote for Senator Obama rather than your wife? The state is 60% black, and 55% of its Democratic voters, including many whites, voted for him. That includes both black and white women.
Clinton. We’re thinking of asking for a recount. There’s something wrong with those figures.
Gazette. That would very likely be a futile gesture. Do you think that your being your wife’s attack dog might have had something to do with her defeat? She has now lost two big preliminary primary fights to Senator Obama, Iowa and South Carolina. The New York Times said today that, “Her advisers’ steady attacks On Mr. Obama appeared to prove fruitless, if not counterproductive, and the attack-dog role of former President Bill Clinton seemed to have backfired.”
Clinton. We may have to do some tweaking of our tactics in upcoming primary states. We will not be denied the White House a third time.
Gazette. “We?” That sounds as though you believe you’re going to share Hillary’s Presidency if she makes it.
Clinton. Well, she shared mine, didn’t she? And she parleyed that into a senatorship from New York State. She has over a decade of experience in American politics at the highest level, unlike Obama who has only a couple of years’ experience from a second-level state, Illinois.
Gazette. But your wife is a carpetbag senator, unlike Obama who has had a lot of experience in the local politics of his home state, most of it in elective positions. Hillary had never been elected to anything before she invaded New York and used her name recognition to win her office. You sound as though you look forward to sharing the power of your wife if she wins the Democratic nomination and the White House.
Clinton. I have fond mammaries of the White House, especially of the Oval Office.
Gazette. Did you say, "mammaries"?
Clinton. No, I said, "memories."
Gazette. My mistake. Sorry. Some people have implied that you look at moving back into the White House as a restoration of your Presidency; in fact, as your third term in office.
Clinton. Okay, you’ve got me. You know, people say I’m the most astute politician of my generation, and, yes, I plan to be the first President to hold a third term in office in fact, if not in name, since F. D. R. Boy, that’ll be some coup, won’t it?
Gazette. If you keep thinking and acting that way, Mr. Clinton, Democrats will catch on to what you’re really up to. In fact, the Times today also said, “Indeed, surveys of voters leaving the polls” in South Carolina yesterday, “showed that many Democrats who believed Mr. Clinton’s role was important ended up voting for Mr. Obama.” Your tactics may have the effect of electing the person who will really be the first Black President in American history.