|Clinton's e-mail gaffe|
Photo courtesy the IndyChannel.com
She called our city "basketball-crazed Indianoplace."
I can handle the first part. Indiana is basketball-crazed. You'll find me attending tons of Indiana high school basketball games this fall, winter, and into the spring. I completely agree with that. It's the second part of her comment to which I take umbrage.
The e-mail in question was written in 2010. That was two years after Hillary Clinton, locked in a battle with Barack Obama for the Democratic nomination, crisscrossed the Hoosier State stumping for votes. In the end, she narrowly defeated Obama to win the Indiana Primary. The margin was much closer than it was supposed to have been and coupled with other primary defeats, the writing on the wall became more clear. Clinton's historic run for President was on life support.
Here we are, eight years later. Hillary Clinton is again running for President of the United States. It's unclear whether Indiana will matter in the larger scope of the campaign at this point, but Clinton is locked in a tight battle with Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders in Iowa and New Hampshire, two critical early states in the primary process. Joe Biden is dipping his toe into the water to see if he might run for President. In short, things aren't going well for Clinton, who, like 2008, was seen at one point as the inevitable nominee.
It's gaffes like the e-mail insult of Indianapolis that cause Clinton to lose support. She seems aloof and comes across as not a nice person regardless of her obvious qualities and qualifications that might make her a good President. After all the time running ragged in this state, Clinton's words about Indianapolis carry more weight to me. This just isn't some throwaway comment, and, at least for me, it hits home.
Except for my time in Bloomington at Indiana, I've lived all my life in or around Indianapolis. I love this city, and I can remember when people derisively called it "Indianoplace" because it was, frankly, not the most exciting city on the planet. Today, we're still not New York City or Las Vegas, but our city has built the strong reputation of being a smaller city with big dreams and aspirations. Our city has become a regional center for the arts, for entertainment, and a worldwide host of some of the most major events on the planet. Indianapolis is home to magnificent facilities and restaurants and budding neighborhoods.
Yes, we have our problems. In the last two years alone, over 200 homicides have been committed. We have a problem with homelessness we need to tackle, and we have a cadre of other issues that the next Mayor will deal with on day one when he steps into his office.
We are no longer Indianoplace, and our city deserves an apology from Secretary Clinton.
It's these kinds of gaffes that concern me most about her candidacy. Hillary Clinton might be a great President, but she certainly isn't a great candidate. Again, I don't mean her qualifications or accomplishments. She's more than qualified. Her resume is full. She fails where Joe Biden succeeds. Biden is warm, friendly, and regular. Hillary seems none of the three.
She doesn't have to soften up to be elected, but maybe she needs to, as Reagan once did, "shine a light on her problem."
By and large, this e-mail controversy has been contrived by the right to discredit Hillary. This "Indianoplace" e-mail is not a problem for her except regionally, but there's an opportunity here for her to make it right.
Take one day off the campaign trail and come visit Indianapolis and see what we have to offer. Hoosiers are nice, forgiving people, Secretary Clinton, so come on over.