Clark on the Convention « The Washington Independent
As I mentioned earlier, in a confounding decision, it appears that organizers for the Democratic National Convention are denying any speaking role to the party’s most prominent military leader, former Gen. Wesley Clark.
Clark’s office told The Washington Note that the Obama campaign did not ask him to speak or play any role in Denver, so he does not plan to attend the convention. An aide added, however, that Clark would rearrange his schedule to come "play any constructive role" that the campaign desired.
This weekend, Wesley Clark Jr. emphasized that his father’s plan to skip the convention was "not a fake-out or some secret plan," and he predicted that Clark "isn’t going to be VP or probably anything else in an Obama administration, assuming he’s elected." Responding to blog commenters who were brainstorming how to support the retired general, Clark Jr. also dismissed the efficacy of grass-roots efforts to pressure Obama:
I know some you think you can change this by launching VP [blog] diaries a couple times a day in hopes that Obama will be swayed by the "netroots." Dude, when has that ever worked with this campaign?
Yet the political question is not whether Team Obama cares that bloggers like Clark. The big question earlier is this:
Why is the 2008 Democratic Convention boxing out one of the most popular people in the party?
Put aside the netroots, and Clark consistently ranks as one of the most requested surrogate speakers for all Democratic events and fund-raisers across the country. (That means lots of swing states.) Add in the four-star factor — in a race against a GOP war hero — and a convention night devoted to honoring the military and this choice looks downright delusional. I’ll outline some possibilities in the next post.