Open Phones: Hillary's first order of business.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

We take your phone calls on the following question: which issues do you think Senator Clinton should focus on now that the time-intensive primaries are over?

Comment Below!

Comments [65]


hi mc,
maybe you're right. With NYC and upstate, there seems to be an antagonism that's more about resource allocation from Albany? I guess you could say we have an "upstate" area there, too. There's an entire part of California farther north of the Bay Area that I've never visited. I've had friends from there, they actually remind me of people upstate - they're much more practical, very nice people. It's supposed to be beautiful up there.
Someone scolded me recently for describing the catskills as "upstate new york." So I'm glad to know the definition is fungible! It always seemed "upstate" to me.

Aug. 05 2008 06:35 PM
mc from Brooklyn

Sorry, had to go away for awhile. eva, do you see the tribalism in CA as similar to the tribalism between NYC and upstate? Just that question alone probably betrays something. What is upstate? Niagra Falls? The Catskills? The upper St. Lawrence?

#60, I think there should be a lot more focus in general on housing, just as there should be on access to health care. Not just here, but all over the US.

Aug. 05 2008 04:50 PM

"Just because they don't belong to the
trendy demographics, doesn't mean they
don't count."
right on - the most vulnerable should be protected first

Aug. 05 2008 03:55 PM

Can't argue with that.

Aug. 05 2008 03:48 PM
DAT from Manhattan - Nathan Straus

I think Hillary Clinton should focus on the
crisis the New York City Housing Authority
is facing.

It involves hundreds of thousands of
New Yorkers.

Just because they don't belong to the
trendy demographics, doesn't mean they
don't count.

NYCHA is in danger of going broke
and that would endanger the living situation,
of a great many people.

Aug. 05 2008 03:46 PM

on conservation: I can't believe that the automakers (and auto buyers) didn't get it. The whole lesson of the 1970's was "DRIVE SMALL." It's so stupid it is kind of mindblowing. I still don't drive, and I live in California. People can't believe it. On the other hand, I can't believe they're driving. They could ride, they could walk, they could bus or train it...
As for the tribalism, it has changed as California has absorbed a lot more new people - not just immigrants, but people from all over the US. It's a snobbism against the south that was aggravated with the drought(s) of the 1970's, and also as LA eclipsed San Francisco as the major West Coast city. But people up north tend to think of LA in the same way a lot of New Yorkers think of California (palm trees, bikinis, and assorted idiots) which is completely unfair. I actually think SoCal is much more creative and fun than NorCal. But... if you live there, you gotta drive.

Aug. 05 2008 02:38 PM
mc from Brooklyn


I don't know the answer. We have to address the immediate problem of the skyrocketing costs and what that is doing to a lot of people. This problem exists, of course because we refused to deal with it before it became a crisis. As for long-term, I think renewable is the way to go. Bio-fuels, all kinds, wind, solar, tidal etc. Probably a raft of solutions to a complex problem.

Interesting about the Ca tribalism. I am completely ignorant about it.

Aug. 05 2008 02:13 PM

I'm up north - my Norcal people aren't allowed down to Southern California. Seriously, it's like two different countries, but the SoCal people, I think, are a lot less tribal and snobbish than we are. I always like going there, SoCal violates every tenet my generation of Norcal kids grew up with, so it's a guilty pleasure. And the weather there is SO much nicer. As for SoCal, I think they don't really notice we're here. They're pretty happy folk!
That coal sounds bad. So what's the answer? Someone here was talking about nuclear, but that seems to have its own problems... we need a manhattan project for energy. Norcal people are very anti-offshore-drilling, but then it's not like there's been any LACK of SUV's around here. Then again, my friends from down south think when they come up here that there are only priuses, compared to the SoCal SUV trend.

Aug. 05 2008 02:05 PM
mc from Brooklyn

Are you in northern CA?

The perspective on energy is interesting in WVA and OH. Many people in DC talk about "clean coal." First of all, not much about coal is clean. Second, the process of making it "clean" is so energy intensive that there is no net gain. Third, no one outside of the regions affected talk about the methods of extraction. There is the retreat method, of course, which resulted in the deaths of the miners in Utah. But in WVA and OH there is strip mining and mountaintop removal. They strip the entire mountain top and dump it in neighboring streams and valleys. It makes the place look like a war has taken place there. So you have people desperate for mining jobs and at the same time victimized by that very industry.

Aug. 05 2008 01:30 PM

That sounds like a great experience in Ohio, we have a lot of working farms up here, thank God they've been saved from development by strict local laws... otherwise it would be suburban sprawl to the nth degree.
People here are nervous about the economy, too, espec. people who are running small organic farms.
I'm pretty nervous about the election, but glad to hear an Obama event anywhere near WVA is stirring excitement!

Aug. 05 2008 01:22 PM
mc from Brooklyn

Hi eva, re: #52,
Someone already mentioned that people really started listening to Al Gore once he was out of the presidential picture. Perhaps the same thing will happen to her.....

Aug. 05 2008 01:18 PM
mc from Brooklyn

Hi eva,

I appreciate your words about what Hillary's candidacy meant to many women. I also am most excited about the effect Obama's campaign is having on the many downtrodden people in my own neighborhood. If it puts a spark in the eye of the local check casher, the local token booth operator, the guys who fix flats, then it is really something.

I just came back from a month on a school campus on a working farm in eastern Ohio. It is hard for me to know which way that region is tipping - McCain had the edge on lawn signs but someone told me of an Obama event being held yesterday on the WVA-Ohio border. There seemed to be considerable excitement over it. Many parts of Ohio are depressed economically and demoralized. I hope this is a pathway out.

Aug. 05 2008 01:13 PM

you wrote:
'Maybe now that she is not running any more people will listen to her more. It will be an interesting ride either way.'
I agree. I think this is the best thing that could have happened for her - she is really going to excel. Obama will be burdened with what BushCo has left in its wake. It is not going to be easy, and the deck is currently stacked against anyone who wins the white house. I honestly can't imagine a time when the country was so broken, except for after the civil war, when we'd literally been slaughtering one another for 4 years.

Aug. 05 2008 01:08 PM

Hi mc,
I knew you wouldn't change your position, and I salute you. I don't feel that Obama is flip-flopping - I feel that he's running the election that most of us expected him to run. I had no illusions that he was going to be some kind of saint. Pols are complex, driven people. The trick has (always) been getting them to understand that their drive needs to be directed to serving the people. A year ago, in Athens, I visited the Acropolis, and went to the site where the first recorded votes were cast in the first recorded democracy. After a lifetime of reading about the Athenians, I can safely report that they had many, if not most, of the same issues with their democracy that we do, especially in, say, the runup to the Peloponnesian War(s) and the runup to the current Iraq War. As you know, HRC was out of the running with me because of her war authorization.
But my main point (if I have one) is this: there was a reason, beyond policy, that Hillary spoke to so many women, and that reason shouldn't be ignored. Insofar as Obama is a phenomenon, so was Hillary.

Aug. 05 2008 12:59 PM
mc from Brooklyn

As for what Hillary should do now, I think she is doing it. Somehow I ended up on her email list, probably left over from when Terry McAllouffe (not sure of that spelling) was DNC chair. Anyway, she has started something called HillPac. The focus is to be universal access to health care and also women's health issues. Both are getting neglected now that the primaries are over, so I think it is a positive direction for her. Maybe now that she is not running any more people will listen to her more. It will be an interesting ride either way.

Aug. 05 2008 12:52 PM
mc from Brooklyn


I have not changed my position, I will support Obama in Nov., because he is the one most Democrats chose, and because he is a better option for me than McCain. However, from my perspective I saw many during the primary who said the opposite, that they would only support Obama and Hillary was not an option. Further, many did not even consider the possibility that some of us felt that she was more progressive than Obama on some of the issues that matter to some of us. Now some of the same people are belly-aching over what they see as inconsistancy or flip-flopping on his part when really they were not paying very close attention to his positions in the first place. He has always been a careful centrist, no change there, that's what we have now, so deal with it.

Aug. 05 2008 12:37 PM

I think it's interesting that, back during the primary, there were a lot of people posting about how they could ONLY vote for Hillary, and Obama was not an option. But I'm not seeing that so much anymore. Not sure how to interpret that, but I am optimistically hoping it's because they have, however reluctantly, come over to the Obama side. One of the things that impressed me about the poster hjs was the confidence to simply move on after Obama became the presumptive nominee and support Obama. hjs and mc had always said that they would support the nominee regardless, and they've been really gracious about it.

Aug. 05 2008 12:27 PM
Alex from Brooklyn

Ruth and other PUMAs ("Party Unity My Ass") like the caller Ruth are crazy.

They give the party a bad name. They give Hillary Clinton a bad name.

They hurt the issues that Hillary Clinton has stood for by preferring a McCain presidency so that she has a better chance of ever becoming president.

This is not what Hillary Clinton has ever been about. She supported Bill Clinton's political career for over two decades. She put her issues ahead of her own political career.

These marginal fools and idiots give all Clinton supporters a bad name.

Aug. 05 2008 12:20 PM
Bobby G from east village

Reba's clearly stated argument made me think that it might be a great contribution to the nation for Hillary to work in a cabinet level position, taking on the daunting task of reorganizing healthcare.

Working to defeat Obama doesn't seem like a good idea to me.

Aug. 05 2008 12:19 PM
mc from Brooklyn

Alex #39:

Nice cultural stereotyping. Move to West Virginia and take up the banjo? Did you know the banjo originated in western Africa?

Aug. 05 2008 12:18 PM
Francis from Washington, DC

To the final caller and anyone else who calls themselves a Democrat but will vote for McCain out of spite over Clinton’s loss in the democratic nomination contest:

Clinton did not lose because she was cheated by the Democratic establishment. She and Bill Clinton are the Democratic establishment – or at least they were until Obama came along. Clinton lost because, again and again in the contest for the Democratic nomination, she proved how far Democrats have strayed from their progressive principles, so much so that they often seem to be scarcely any better than the Republicans. For me it was the comment about obliterating Iran that proved she would do anything to advance her ambitions, even if it meant sinking to the level of Bush-Cheney fear mongering.

If you would support McCain just because you hate Obama for winning the nomination – if you would help to elect another president who will continue our misguided militaristic polices, if you would vote for a man who will ensure that the Supreme Court becomes even more conservative than it already is – you are not much of a Democrat or a progressive.

Aug. 05 2008 12:14 PM
Suzanne Johnson from NYC

Support Sen. Obama--not with a wink wink to her supporters or mere verbal support, as she has to date, BUT, with energy and honesty, get out and campaign. Democrats MUST win.

Aug. 05 2008 12:13 PM
ab from nyc


Well put, that's why I call them Dixiecrats.

Aug. 05 2008 12:11 PM
Taher from Croton on Hudson

Yo folks, mark my words the Barack Obama presidency will be a clown show.

Aug. 05 2008 12:09 PM
ab from nyc


Unfortuntaely I think it may be widespread. Not sure. But there seems to be a contingent that doesn't care about policy or issues or about preserving what's left of our system of law and only care about Hillary having lost and the welfare of the country be's very cult-like and illogical.

Apparently when this contingent claimed to oppose the policies of Bush, that was just empty rhetoric as they seem determined to "sabatoge" the democrats at all costs ensuring at least 4 more years of republican nonsense.

Aug. 05 2008 12:08 PM
Alex from brooklyn

I'm glad to finally here an honest caller like the final caller on the air today. She truly expressed her racist views for why she is against the candidacy of Barak Obama. I wish more people would be as honest as the voters in West Virginia in expressing their backwards views. Sadly, so many still hold those ancient views in the 21st century. Too bad, she is not enlightened enough to see that Hilary Clinton will never be elected in this country because she is such a polarizing figure in American politics. All of the ultra conservatives that may sit out the election because of their opposition to John McCain would surely come out vote against her. She also truly showed what kind of person she is in the divisive, negative campaign she ran. The caller should move to West Virginia with the rest of the Reagan Democrats and take up the banjo and her white sheet with others who would never consider voting for a "bi-racial" candidate.

Aug. 05 2008 12:06 PM

How can the WNYC political director not have heard of PUMA?

Aug. 05 2008 12:04 PM
Thom from brooklyn

my god, that was a depressing final phone call- my mother in-law sounds just the same though. I'm worried that its quite ageneralized feeling...

Aug. 05 2008 12:04 PM
Alex from Brooklyn

Hillary should do what Obama should have done if she had won the primary.

She should use her celebrity to advance the causes that are truest to her heart. In her case, that's universal health care, obviously.

Look at what Al Gore has done for fighting global warming since 2000. When he stopped running all the time, he became more effective.

Is Hillary really going to lose her senate seat if she becomes the nation's foremost leader/spokesman for universal healthcare? Of course not. And this would not overshadow a President Obama, for whom process and changing the nature of politics has been his #1 issue.

So, she should stop forefront making her moderate stances on various issues and highlight universal health care. She should go on the sunday morning talkshows for this. And the late night talkshows. She should campaign for universal healthcare, not for a moderate image.

Aug. 05 2008 12:03 PM
ab from nyc


yeah, funny that

Aug. 05 2008 12:02 PM

Andrea, PUMA stands for "Party Unity My Ass." Google it.

Aug. 05 2008 12:01 PM
molly from manhattan

We all need to come together to get Barack Obama elected. To the Clinton supporter and all others who won't vote for Obama: think hard about what position we will be in if McCain is elected. Among other frightening prospects, we'll be in Iraq until my grandchildren are getting social security.

Aug. 05 2008 12:00 PM
ab from nyc

Wow...that last caller is a typical example of the extreme, racist looney-bin wing among Hillary supporters

She wants Hillary to start preparing to run...NOW? So..she shouldn't do her job as senator...the job she was actually elected for???

and she should "sabatoge" Obama's campaign????

Thanks caller, for presenting to us the new voice of the stupid ignorant modern day Dixiecrat

Aug. 05 2008 12:00 PM
Voter from Brooklyn

I don’t think Senator Clinton should be “forced” to help Senator Obama win, per se… we all know the vitriol her and her supporters have against him. But I do think Senator Clinton needs to mend some of the bridges she burned by her “taking the low road” campaign. Sure, she may win her next senatorial campaign, but several are incline not to vote for her next time around.

Aug. 05 2008 11:59 AM
Thom from brooklyn

oh my god, turn that horrible bloomberg-meets gil scott heron racket off!

Aug. 05 2008 11:59 AM
Nelson from NYC

That woman is ridiculous! Please, she's been on before saying the same things...She needs to get over it and start thinking clearly! ARGH!

Aug. 05 2008 11:59 AM
Jess from White Plains, NY

Cliff...very well said!

Aug. 05 2008 11:59 AM
Albert from Greenwich, CT

Funny how the rabid Hillary Clinton supporters always seem to get the last word.

Aug. 05 2008 11:59 AM
Jess from White Plains, NY

I agree with Zach. Aaargh.

Aug. 05 2008 11:58 AM
Thom from brooklyn

Hilary should meet with the "PUMA" folks and explain why their incredibly personalist understanding of politics is unhelpgul.

Aug. 05 2008 11:58 AM
hjs from 11211

puma is a mccain front

Aug. 05 2008 11:58 AM
tom from nyc

The first caller was right on the mark! Working class NYC is beyond the point of normal difficulty. Building cranes on every block in the city are for rich developers and upper income tenants. I suggest Fenniger's "New York in the Forites" to see the real, authentic New Yorkers who built this city. Now we can look to Chinese cities for a vibrant rising workforce.

Aug. 05 2008 11:57 AM
Barry Gerwinn from Ridgewood

Maybe she could actually do some work in the senate.

She should also ask her husband to return the $10million dollars in donations to the Saudi Monarch.

Aug. 05 2008 11:57 AM
Pete from Bronx, New York

She should resign because she didn't do what she was elected to do. She spent well over a year campaigning! New Yorker didn't elect her to campaign. I'm sick and tired of these elected officials taking the time to land a higher paying job on my time and money when they should be doing the job they were elected to do! If I or any other American were to go to job interviews for months on end, we would be fired in the first few days out of the office! I have to be careful when interviewing on my lunch hour and taking anything over 1.5 hours! Enough is enough!

Aug. 05 2008 11:57 AM
Zach from Upper West Side

This woman is an idiot

Aug. 05 2008 11:57 AM
Thom from brooklyn

"Hillary supporter" you seem not to care about about any issues as such....that is foolish.

Aug. 05 2008 11:56 AM
Cliff from Manhattan

I'd like Senator Clinton to gently lift the mantel of leadership from the shoulders of Senator Kennedy to provide the senate with the moral authority it needs to rebuild. It's the best contribution she could possibly make to the administration of President Obama.

Aug. 05 2008 11:55 AM
ben perowsky from brooklyn

i think she should do what ever she can to help obama win

Aug. 05 2008 11:51 AM
Robert from NYC

you're right caller about affordable housing and working class in general Bravo, man.

Aug. 05 2008 11:51 AM
Robert from NYC

Please, PLEASE stop playing those crappy jokes from the dinner last night. yuk.

Aug. 05 2008 11:50 AM
Bobby G from east village

Increased Federal funding for public transportation, the MTA!

Aug. 05 2008 11:50 AM
Gary Rose from Jersey City

With the increase in the US HIV incidence, the US government must devise a coherent domestic HIV policy. At the same time, the two biggest HIV experts in Congress are, for understandable reasons, otherwise concerned. Rep. Nancy Pelosi is now Speaker and Sen. Ted Kennedy is ill. That vacuume must be filled and it must be filled by someone:
1. Willing to devote significant staff resources to the issue, and
2. Willing to pay attention beyond New Yor's parochial HIV interests.

Aug. 05 2008 11:50 AM
Taher from Croton on Hudson

What “open for business” simply means that she is no longer a potential vice-presidential candidate. She is back in the Senate.

Aug. 05 2008 11:47 AM
veronica from manhattan

Vote no on the H.R. 5889 Orphan Works Bill currently on hold in the Senate regarding copyright laws affecting visual artists, musicians and writers.

Aug. 05 2008 11:46 AM
Deb Lucke from Beacon, NY

Vote no on the Orphan Works Legislation that would weaken the copyright on artist's works.

Aug. 05 2008 11:42 AM
donald from manhattan

the biggest thing Senator Clinton should be doing now is openly supporting and working for Obama so he can be a president who will allow Clinton to push forth her programs. She has not been in the picture doing this. She should be showing how Obama and not MaCain is the president she and we want.

Aug. 05 2008 11:42 AM

I would hope Hilary would do what I hope every other elected official would do: cut the waste by enacting preventive measures across the board, as in:health care, education, drug rehab and energy. We're wasting huge amounts of money because we don't invest nominal amounts that let us make use of what we already have and prevent future costs in these areas. An epidemic of childhood obesity, Type II diabetes, and heart disease is because we can't set up sane phys ed/nutrition programs in the schools. Skyrocketing prison costs? In part because we won't fund decent drug rehab programs (and because the prison contractors are as meretricious as the military contractors.)

GOP Drops in Voting Rolls in Many States

Aug. 05 2008 11:37 AM
Serena from NYC

I would like her to attend to the business of rescuing the Democratic Party from the clutches of people who have haven't a clue.

Aug. 05 2008 11:31 AM
World's Toughest Milkman from the_C_train

How about GET BACK TO WORK NOW, stop this undeserved vacation and hammer on this energy catastrophe.

If you want free healthcare, move to Canada or the UK or do what the illegal immigrants do, use a false ss# at your nearest emergency room at your favorite sanctuary city.

Aug. 05 2008 11:26 AM
exlege from brooklyn

Allowing small food producers to compete on a level playing field (based upon production amounts) with agribusiness to promote healthy, local food production.

Aug. 05 2008 11:08 AM
exlege from brooklyn

Affordable health care for all, funded by an entity who is not conflicted with profit-mindedness.
Energy independance via reducing use, incentivising alternatives and eliminating taxpayer-funded petroleum company giveaways.

Aug. 05 2008 11:06 AM
Robert from NYC

Any and every issue that is important to New York State first and the country in general, e.g., health insurance, economy, infrastructure maintenance, the usual for the good of [us] "we the people" not them the corporations. It's also time to rethink and rewrite laws on lobbying.

Aug. 05 2008 11:06 AM
O from Forest Hills

I've heard that it is more important that whomever lost the primaries (which is Hilary) that she backs and supports Obama now till November to help success.

Aug. 05 2008 11:00 AM
Abe from NJ

there's only one issue:

making sure her supporters fully back Obama come November....everything else depends on that!!!

Aug. 05 2008 10:38 AM
O from Forest Hills

Health care for all Americans. Fixing the American economy. Raise taxes for the rich and cut the poor working classes taxes. People who sit around the pool waiting for the dividend check don't pay FICA or Medicare tax. Change that!

Give the middle class peace instead of a war on them!

Aug. 05 2008 10:21 AM

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