Pamela Leavey has written a factual and responsible story of Wes Clark’s endorsement of Senator Clinton. It is a seminal moment in her campaign as it has the potential to bring to her table many, many thousands of passionate Clark supporters.
From my personal view today was heartbreaking. While I understand his choice, and agree she is qualified, it was still a shock to see him so firmly remove himself from contention. Why such a shock when he had done nothing to prepare an organization for the race?
Well, and this is perhaps too personal and Pamela will edit this post, I started with the Draft Clark movement just weeks after it started. I had done a lot of research. I read many of his profiles in all the magazines. I read many Op-Ed pieces and traced his education, service and committment to a reality based view of the world. I was sold. I was sold more than I had been in any campaign since Bobby Kennedy in 1968. That’s saying something, my friends.
Subsequently I had one heart attack in May 2003 and another in December that same year. I took zero time off my organizing activity, which was a full time unpaid effort at an executive level in SoCal, ignored the needed rehab and kept up the fight. I was more invested in Wes Clark at a foundational, emotional level than was healthy from a long term perspective. To some degree I am still paying the price today.
After John Kerry was the obvious nominee we needed to merge the small but passionate Kerry Operation in So Cal with the very organized and well staffed, overwhelmingly passionate Clark Organization. My health had deteriorated at that point. I knew I wasn’t up to the challenge of helping blend competing organizations. In fact, that spring I had three more angioplasties. Thank goodness I started writing (blogging at Political Dogfight and eventually started Political Interviews) and doing political consulting again rather than hitting the streets.
I’ve remained a firm Clark supporter and have met him several times. Senator Clinton picked up one helluva asset today if she and her leadership and effectively make use of his talents.
Should he be Vice President? I’ll be writing more on that topic another time. Today I needed to express my own feelings about the event. I hope this isn’t too personal and out of line.
I simply believe he’s the best thinker in American Politics today. Period.