A week back, while at the NRA convention, former GOP presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee made a stupid remark. After hearing a loud noise off stage, he joked that it was Barack Obama falling off a chair -- because someone had pointed a gun at him and he dove to the floor. It was a poorly crafted joke that didn't go over at the convention or nationwide. Huckabee apologized, noting that it was offensive.
Yesterday, Hillary Clinton in an interview with a South Dakota paper defended her continued run for the White House, despite the steep odds, in part because in the past Democratic nominations didn't get wrapped up until June, and pointed to the fact that Bobby Kennedy was assassinated in June. That analogy has caused a firestorm of protest. The Obama campaign's official responses have been muted, but outside the official channels there has been strong protest.
Now, I don't believe that Hillary was inviting someone to do Barack Obama in. But it does suggest the desperate straights of her campaign -- and this isn't the first time she's used the analogy. The problem is that in speaking of such a thing, she raises the specter of violence against a candidate who has had to receive Secret Security protection earlier than any other candidate precisely because there have been death threats. And if something were to happen to Obama, she wouldn't have to continue on till the end -- she already has sufficient delegates to claim the nomination.
The problem here is that speaking of assassination -- even if not directly pointed at the rival is in bad taste. I do think that it will have a negative effect on her campaign -- and likely nixes any chance of her joining the ticket. I think it's fine for her to continue on the trail until June 3, but now its time to slowly shut things down and let the process conclude peacefully. And no more dumb statements please!