- The Washington Times - Monday, June 9, 2008

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

It is fascinating to note the complete turnaround in former Democratic presidential contender Hillary Clinton’s rhetoric about Sen. Barack Obama now that she has been forced to acknowledge defeat (“Clinton suspends her bid,” Page 1, Sunday).

Mrs. Clinton campaigned against Mr. Obama in a manner that did not merely accentuate minor distinctions between the two, but attacked him with condemnation so virulent as to render him and the Democratic Party severely damaged.

Mr. Obama’s task of winning the general election has become an extraordinary challenge - even in a year in which any Democrat heading the ticket should be able to capitalize on the understandable contempt in which the Republican Party is held.

Mrs. Clinton repeatedly hammered away at the theme that Mr. Obama is not qualified to be president and that he is not electable. She had far kinder comments about Sen. John McCain, the presumptive Republican nominee, than her fellow Democrat. Former President Bill Clinton consistently served as her surrogate in the mode of an attack dog, seeking to tear down and slander Mr. Obama.

How will Mrs. Clinton handle media inquiries as to whether she was being disingenuous when she slammed Mr. Obama or whether she is prevaricating now, as she pays lip service to working to elect him?

OREN M. SPIEGLER

Upper Saint Clair, Pa.

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