Editorials

Clinton is the Democratic candidate ready to be president

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton pauses as she speaks during an election night event at the Palm Beach County Convention Center in West Palm Beach, Fla., Tuesday, March 15, 2016. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton pauses as she speaks during an election night event at the Palm Beach County Convention Center in West Palm Beach, Fla., Tuesday, March 15, 2016. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster) The Associated Press

What the 2016 Democratic presidential race might lack in variety has been more than compensated by the spirited and substantive debates on issues that resonate with Americans.

We have enjoyed the mostly civil, issue-based back and forth between the two survivors — former Secretay of State Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt. — and we believe this process has made both of them better candidates.

But the discussions and stump speeches have yielded a clear and undeniable fact: Clinton has the better overall experience, grasp on the broad range of issues and the natural attributes to assume the presidency on Day 1 of her administration.

Whereas Sanders’ passion and populist appeal have been effective in certain states under certain circumstances — and this has manifested in upset primary wins in states such as Michigan — we think there is a steep learning curve for Sanders on a number of issues outside of income equality and prosecuting Wall Street.

Just as Ohio Gov. John Kasich earned our endorsement on the Republican side because he seemed the most prepared and presidential, Clinton gets the nod for the Idaho Democratic caucuses Tuesday because of a lifetime of activism on behalf of Americans, her service as a U.S. senator in New York and her tenure as secretary of state in the Obama administration. Her government service — working on behalf of 9/11 responders as a senator and being a tough negotiator during foreign policy missions in the Middle East — show her capabilities, grit and determination to get things done.

Though we have our concerns about her inability to articulate her goals and manage a crisis at times — such as the slow and clumsy release of information about her private emails — her work ethic and ability to follow through in a bipartisan fashion override her shortcomings.

Clinton certainly has paid her dues and has earned the opportunity to lead her party to the November election.

Statesman editorials are the unsigned opinion expressing the consensus of the Statesman’s editorial board. To comment on an editorial or suggest a topic, email editorial@ idahostatesman.com.

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