Is the second time a charm for Hillary Clinton?

Published: Apr 16, 2015 09:21am EDT
By Lance Rinker, Managing Editor for Konsume Politics

Please Note: This article was updated Apr 16, 2015 @ 09:21am EDT

 

After nearly two years of speculation, Hillary Rodham Clinton announced that she is running for President of the United States for the second time on Sunday.  With the expected announcement now out of the way, Clinton has established herself as the likely 2016 Democratic nominee.

This is due to a relatively weak field of Democratic challengers and because Clinton enters the race with universal name recognition and a strong base of support - largely from women and what is left of the middle class.

Clinton doesn’t make an appearance in her own campaign announcement video until well after the 90-second mark, which prominently features minorities with families, newlyweds, and even the white, working-class people that are crucial to any presidential campaign.

“I’m running for president,” Mrs. Clinton said with a smile near the end of her two-minute video. “Everyday Americans need a champion. And I want to be that champion,” she said. “So I’m hitting the road to earn your vote — because it’s your time. And I hope you’ll join me on this journey.”

Clinton seemed to have a clear path to the Democratic nomination in 2008 until President Barack Obama, who was then just the little known Senator of Chicago, played the role of ultimate dark horse and rode a wave of support from minorities and young minds across the country to the White House.

While there doesn’t appear to be anyone that has even hinted they are running for President from the democratic side of the political spectrum that could accomplish what President Obama did, that doesn’t mean it couldn’t happen to Clinton once more. That is why she is making sure everything is done the way it should have been done in 2008.

According to those close to the campaign, Clinton will begin on a small scale and build up from there. Clinton will be making stops in Iowa and New Hampshire to conduct a series of intimate campaign events to reintroduce herself to the public. The key to those events will be laying out the primary theme of her campaign, which by all accounts is focused on improving the lives of the middle class and reducing income inequality.

Recent political polls have Clinton up by as many as 54 points and up by as few as 40 points in the polls against likely Democratic challengers in Senator Elizabeth Warren, Senator Bernie Sanders, Vice President Joe Biden, Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, and former Senator Jim Webb.

Senator Warren has explicitly said she is not running for President, but that could change if she doesn’t believe the needs of the middle and lower class are going to be met by other Democratic challengers for the nomination.

Senator Sanders is currently exploring his options and visiting cities such as Austin, TX to see just how well he’s able to connect with the college and young adult crowd and how well his message of eliminating tax loopholes for large corporations and income inequality resonates with those he interacts with.

Governor O’Malley has already come out swinging against Clinton, having been the most aggressive campaigner up to this point. While O’Malley doesn’t have the star power or the fundraising ability Clinton has, he helped lead change in a fairly conservative Maryland and progressive Democrats may opt to cast their vote for him simply because he’s not Clinton.

The most important change Clinton needs to make this go round will have nothing to do with the size of the venue she speaks at or how much money she has or who she’s getting it from. The most important change Clinton will have to make is ensuring every single voter knows which way she leans on key issues such as marriage equality, income inequality, and working hard to help the middle class stop struggling to put food on the table and keep the lights on.

If Clinton wants progressive democrats to take her seriously then she will have to channel her inner Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders to speak passionately about the issues of inequality in America. If she’s unable to do that, once more, then she could very well be paving the road in gold for Warren, Sanders, or even O’Malley to earn the Democratic nomination for President. 


 

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Lance Rinker
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