Sunday, April 06, 2008

Mark Penn Exits Clinton Campaign: Why Was He Ever Part of It In The First Place?

Controversial lobbyist Mark Penn has left the Clinton campaign and not a moment too soon. His presence in the campaign was one of the biggest indicators of Hillary Clinton's bad judgment. That he is finally gone does not relieve her of the error of using him as her chief pollster and strategist. And his mere presence was the strongest indicator of Hillary's continuing links to the DLC wing of the Democratic party. Penn is and was a poster boy for DLC anti-worker "free trade" pablum. That's as in "free trade" for workers, but a rigged game favoring employers.

The candidate herself has spoken out of two sides of her mouth on NAFTA. While stating strong support on numerous occasions, she purported she was against NAFTA all along. She claimed to oppose the Fair Trade deal Penn was lobbying for with Columbia. And yet there was Penn trying to negotiate the deal.

One constant reminder of Clinton triangulation exits. But this writer will not forget he was there in the first place. And it is one of the main reasons to hope Ms. Clinton is not the nominee.

Until and unless the workers of the the US and the world regain some of the protections they lost under NAFTA and NAFTA-clones, and until ALL Democratic candidates unambiguously denounce the serious damage to workers resulting from such agreements, we cannot fully believe in all of our candidates. Thank God at least Barack Obama gets it.