June 16, 2024

Jerry Brown Never had a Chance

Former President Clinton recently said that he’s never seen anything like the Obama/DNC full-court press to get Democratic super delegates to commit to Mr. Obama.  But The Jed Report has a interesting post about the 1992 Bill Clinton vs. Jerry Brown Democratic primary race that belies that assertion.  To an extent, the same thing was going on during Bill’s breakaway win over Brown.

But Jed’s quotes don’t foster the same impressions of urgent, powerful pressure that’s being placed on delegates and voters alike to stop the debate and hand the nomination to Barack Obama.

"It’s time to close ranks. We cannot wait until July when we already know who has earned the right to be our nominee and who will be our nominee."
— West Virginia Sen. Jay Rockefeller (NYT, 4/11/92)

"Indeed, reports circulating on Capitol Hill said the Clinton campaign was mounting a strong campaign to swing uncommitted senators behind the Arkansas Governor, and that Ronald H. Brown, the party chairman, was taking part in them."
— NYT, 4/29/92

I had the chance to hear Jerry Brown speak in Portland Oregon in 1992 and I can say with absolute certainty that he was not in Hillary Clinton’s league in terms of speaking ability, inspirational ability, or leadership potential.

Afterward Mr. Brown walked past me and our eyes met for a brief moment, but only that.  He was plainly ill at ease, even in a solidly liberal city in the state adjacent to his, and his eyes never stopped on anyone long enough to create a connection.  Jerry Brown never had a chance in 1992 and he knew it.

That’s the essential difference between Brown and Hillary Clinton.


Marc is a software developer, writer, and part-time political know-it-all who currently resides in Texas in the good ol' U.S.A.

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