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Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Senator Dianne Feinstein of California got the call from Hillary Rodham Clinton Thursday afternoon: Could she, would she let Mrs. Clinton use her home in Northwest Washington for a little sit-down with a certain senator from Illinois, the presumptive Democratic nominee for president of the United States?

Mrs. Feinstein had made the offer before and it was still good. And so a few hours later, at just about 9 p.m., Mrs. Clinton and Senator Barack Obama arrived for a face to face chat. No staff. No spouses. Just the two of them in Mrs. Feinstein's living room.

The California senator had set up two chairs facing each other. She served them water. Nothing else. Two aides were sent to Mrs. Feinstein's study. And Secret Service agents stayed outside.

And so it happened, The Meeting, that Democrats knew was inevitable, but for a long while thought would never come. It lasted about an hour.

Reporters in the Capitol pressed for every last detail. "They talked for about an hour," she said. "Just them. No staff. There were no press, no staff. They had one person from each campaign that was in my study separately and I guess the security people outside. They got along very well."

She was asked whether she heard any shouting. "No, they got along very well."

Thanks for the good post Jay. This strange element of having the primary come down to an African American and a woman really put the best and worst of this country on display, but on cable news it was mostly the worst. We saw the inner psychologies/pathologies of our pundits dredged up and put on full display. The blatant, undeniable sexism exhibited was I think muddied a bit, though, by the fact that this was Hillary Clinton we were talking about. (Very far from "generic female politician") But certainly the worst offenders would have been just as bad if it were any other woman.
And, yes, the media is one of the great problems in our country right now, because they keep us from solving all of the others. (By the way I highly recommend Gore's most recent book, which deals with this well) Hopefully the Internet and television will merge in a way that brings the best of both worlds together.
But Jay, your note sounded like a sign off... we've only just begun! On to the general where the battle starts in earnest
"Once more into the breach!"

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