Hillary Clinton's politics, including her love of huge huge government programs, make her a poor choice for congress no matter who she is representing. But before New Yorkers debate her politics we need to ask a more important question: should she be representing us?
Senators usually live and work in the states they represent. Some even have mobile offices built into RVs so they can travel the state and deal directly with their constituents. They know their state and its people and its culture. It's the only way they can decide what's best for the people they represent when they vote in the senate.
Very few states are represented by someone who just recently wandered in offering their services.
The next New York senator should be a New Yorker. They should be able to find Albany and Utica and Watertown on a map. They should know what we mean by The City and Upstate, and should have experienced the rivalry and relationship between the two. They should know Albany's political history. They should know which counties depend on farming and which depend on tourism and which depend on manufacturing and be familiar with the needs and concerns of each one. They should not only recognize a Brooklyn accent but understand and love the attitude behind it. They should know which SUNY campus is the most academic and which is the best party school. They should have waited for the snowplow to clear their street, stepped ankle deep into a chilly mud puddle and knocked their car out of alignment on a large pothole. They should know what a "regular" means in a coffee shop and whether we call them heroes or subs. They should know where to find the best jazz in New York City and the best pizza in Troy and the best cannoli in Utica. And they should know this, not from reading a speech prepared by their handlers, but in their bones, because they are from here, because this is their home and is as much a part of them as their own name.
No one deserves any less, not in this state, not in any other state.
This makes Hillary profoundly, deeply, completely unqualified to be our next senator.
© 1999 Dave Hitt
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