Hillary Clinton’s Next Argument

Wilson Franklin Roosevelt

The New York Sun this week unveils a new design for its website and my column appears on it today.

If Clinton stays in the race past the Pennsylvania primary, I believe she’ll start to invoke the tough convention fights faced by both Woodrow Wilson and Franklin Roosevelt. While it’s a given that the conventions of the early 20th Century were much different than today, it’s still worth pointing out that both these Democratic stars faced contentious and lengthy convention fights. Wilson’s nomination took an eye-popping 46 ballots and even Roosevelt, who went into the 1932 convention as the favorite, need four ballots and a break for delegates to sleep, to win the nomination. If these conventions did no harm to either of these candidates, the Democratic Party or their ultimate presidency’s, then Clinton can make her case to stay in the race today.

Here’s a line about the potential value of Roosevelt and Wilson to her campaign: “They will be the best kind of friends for her, because unlike living former allies, such as Governor Richardson, who endorsed Mr. Obama, they can’t, as dead men, prevent the Clintons from speaking in their name.”

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