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Hillary Clinton Apologizes For RFK Remark

Hillary Apologizes For RFK Remark. Was "Sorry" Necessary?

Yesterday, Hillary Clinton used the example of Robert Kennedy's June 1968 assassination while she was explaining why she's still in the race. The world seems to have done a collective jaw-drop. She has apologized for the parallel drawn saying:

I regret that my referencing that moment of trauma for our entire nation and particularly for the Kennedy family was in any way offensive. The Kennedys have been much on my mind the last days because of Senator Kennedy.

But was her apology necessary? Was the statement, as Michelle Obama worries, a reference to violence that could befall Obama? Or was it merely an unfortunate way to put historical perspective on the month of June in a campaign year? Here's Hillary's whole original quote:

My husband did not wrap up the nomination in 1992 until he won the California primary somewhere in the middle of June, right? We all remember Bobby Kennedy was assassinated in June in California. I don't understand [calls to drop out]."

As soon as the egg of a quote was laid, Liberty and I rushed to the Church of Wikipedia to see exactly what the state of the 1968 election was in June. Was Bobby well ahead, or was the contest still alive? That seems to be the crucial detail to me — was the mention of the assassination just a calendar signpost? A way of saying, of course we all remember the day, it happened in June? Apparently, at the moment of Kennedy's assassination, the delegate totals were: Hubert Humphrey, 561; Robert F. Kennedy, 393; Eugene McCarthy, 258.

Hmm. Kennedy was in second place in the delegate totals. Just like Hillary. And we're heading into June. Were people too quick to offense on this statement? Was it just, as a Clinton spokesperson has said, "historical examples of the nominating contest going well into the summer. Any reading into it beyond that is inaccurate and outrageous." Or is any reference to an assassination — especially a Kennedy — despicable?

Want to know more about that tragic night in June? New York magazine has a powerful narrative all about it, out this week.


Join The Conversation
Can we really be surprised that McCain called his wife the c-word, no matter when it was said? This is the same guy who has voted 114 times out of 117 against women's reproductive rights, recently. To me, that shows a lack of respect for women, suggesting they aren't intelligent enough to make their own decisions about their own bodies... Unfortunately, sexism is still alive and well in the US. My own grandfather is sexist, which is why I don't take anything he says seriously, because he thinks as, a female, my only use is to stay home, have children, and cook and clean for my husband. Heaven forbid I become an independant woman capable of supporting myself and my family.
UnDave35 UnDave35 9 years
Steph - This guy has a hair trigger and a slow brain. I'm sure he has called people worse in the last 12 months. I don't like that he used that language, but people change in 15 years. Let's find better comment to nail him on.
flutterpie flutterpie 9 years
digging up stupid things that policians say is a waste of time, point being i really dont care. just the facts maam is my attitude towards the issue
stephley stephley 9 years
Geez Dave, I love that: "yeah, so what has he called her in public lately?"
UnDave35 UnDave35 9 years
I agree flutterpie, and it happened how long ago? Can't we dig up something a little more to date?
flutterpie flutterpie 9 years
ya im not really down with the team thing either besides team red makes me thing of communism for some reason. i think its because i just watched the pianist. as far as mccains c-word mishap, his camp admitted that it happened and attributed it to him being stressed out. in the grand scheme of things, its really not a big deal. if she wants to deal with that kind of behavior, thats on her. as for me i would take my millions and go play elsewhere
harmonyfrance harmonyfrance 9 years
It's just a joke. It's an attempt to keep things light. It's not serious. AND I was just being a smart ass by putting one right after sylvana's comment.
stephley stephley 9 years
I'm with Sylvana, the team thing's not so helpful.
harmonyfrance harmonyfrance 9 years
LeChatonNoir LeChatonNoir 9 years
Team? Team?! Is this a game?? *disgruntled sigh* I know, I know, you'll say it was light-hearted and not meant to be taken seriously. But then, I would like to think that arguments about politics don't have to resort to "teams". But that's just me. :)
azulsky azulsky 9 years
I know that she states her reasoning behind the statement was primaries lasting until June, although that has been questioned because the primary calendars were vastly different (Robert Kennedy's first primary was May 7th of 1968) and the challenger to Bill Clinton in '92 did not actively campaign until June like she is (Paul E. Tsongas withdrew from the race on March 20, 1992). But to say that people shouldn't question her on the meaning behind that statement. Obama's safety (any candidates safety) is a particularly sensitive issue and Hillary made this statement after 2 recent incidents in MSM that brought up the issue of something bad happening to Obama , The Roswell Beacon's article and the Huckabee speech at National Rifle Association convention bringing it to the forefront of many Obama supporters in the past weeks. Whatever her intention, people were going to take issue with the response she gave especially Obama/Kennedy supporters. If she wants to continue her campaign, fine do that, stop defending the decision and do it (because she's making avoidable mistakes), stop making excuses and run her campaign because right now IMO she's doing everything but running her campaign just making excuses.
UnDave35 UnDave35 9 years
It's only because that's one of the few red emoticons. If there was a red party dude (Sugar???), then we'd use that instead.
kastarte2 kastarte2 9 years
Thanks for the link stephley. It's a funny story but its legitimacy seems questionable. I like how Jillness's team blue emoticon looks like some young guy partying while UD's team red emoticon looks like a pitch fork and torch wielding archaic lynch mob. Seems appropriate somehow.
tiff58 tiff58 9 years
I don't know if she should apologize or not (I mean, her apology is only for political gain anyways), but I do not believe she meant anything other than that primaries are sometimes decided in the last minute. Oh, and go Team Red. :)
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 9 years
Sure she needed to apologize because according to the article the world did a collective jaw-drop. Which I apparently missed because I saw the interview in its intended context and it had nothing to do with Sen. Obama. I will say that she could have been more tactfull. Not because she was wrong but because she has to understand that at all times people are strategically listening to her every word and like connect the dots they are diligently trying at all times to connect her words to a negative definition. Why? Because it's an election and that's what they get paid to do.
blondie01 blondie01 9 years
:pepino: go red :pepino:
UnDave35 UnDave35 9 years
Go Team Red :mob:
Jillness Jillness 9 years
Thanks, Harmony! :kool: Go Team Blue!
stephley stephley 9 years
The name calling story has been around for a while - here's a link to the story on Wonkette. I've read elsewhere that he's never denied it.
tiff58 tiff58 9 years
"our current President is barely literate"....Seriously?
kastarte2 kastarte2 9 years
btw Flutterpie When did McCain Call his wife the C word? How did I miss that? By "C word" I'm guessing you don't mean Cindy?
kastarte2 kastarte2 9 years
Polished politician or not, no one can be perfect 100% of the time. It's inhuman. I'm an Obama supporter, but I think people are reading too much into what was said. She was trying (and failing) to make a timeline point, not trying to suggest that Obama was going to be offed before primary season is over. No canidate is ever going to be so perfectly polished that they will never say anything to upset anyone. As a nation we are too uptight and too diverse for that to happen. They say one thing to appeal to one group and they end up insulting another. They make pitches to thier supporters and they end up alienating the other side. The only way to be safe is to be silent and we would certainly get no enjoyment out of that. ;)
People are too touchy! Wah, you were forced to think about an upsetting moment that happened 40 years ago for a whole minute. Get over it! Hey, you know what?! RFK was assassinated in June, therefore a good deal of people had to change their decisions about who they were going to vote for. I guess she could've spared everyone's feelings and just said "Shit happens!" I prefer to just laugh at the people who found this offensive.
harmonyfrance harmonyfrance 9 years
AND here's one for you Jill :cocktail: GO TEAM BLUE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :kool:
harmonyfrance harmonyfrance 9 years
kastarte....I will! AND here's some for you!!!! :cocktail: :drinks:
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