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Hillary Speaks: Some Brief Thoughts

It was a marvelous and heartfelt speech, very skillfully and adroitly delivered. Most of all it said what needed saying.

The lines urging her supporters to get behind Obama (which I can only paraphrase here) — "Life is short. The time is too short, the stakes too high, for us to spend any time thinking about what might have been" — stand out as classic Hillary: moving forward, always fighting.

[Update: Here’s the actual transcript:

So I want to say to my supporters, when you hear people saying – or think to yourself – "if only" or "what if," I say, "please don’t go there."  Every moment wasted looking back keeps us from moving forward.

Life is too short, time is too precious, and the stakes are too high to dwell on what might have been.  We have to work together for what still can be.  And that is why I will work my heart out to make sure that Senator Obama is our next President and I hope and pray that all of you will join me in that effort.]

I deeply appreciate how Hillary, for millions, represented the aspirations of women everywhere to see one of their own elected to the White House. That was really the centerpiece of her concession speech today, and it made the speech stick.

I particularly liked the line about how she may not have finally shattered that final glass ceiling, but there were now "about 18 million cracks" in it. That truly is the case.

There have already been many words spent exploring why her campaign came up short, but regardless of her tactical errors and missteps, the biggest problem she had was Barack Obama. He is a special and historic candidate of unique quality, and it was everyone’s mistake to underestimate him. He had a ceiling to shatter too — and is going to do it.

With the help, of course, of women like Hillary. Hopefully, the speech today will help many of them reconcile themselves with disappointment and look forward to the real victory — for women, for all of us — in November.

[Video above will be updated.]

UPDATE: Crooks and Liars has more video.

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David Neiwert

David Neiwert

David Neiwert is the managing editor of Firedoglake. He's a freelance journalist based in Seattle and the author/editor of the blog Orcinus. He also is the author of Strawberry Days: How Internment Destroyed a Japanese American Community (Palgrave/St. Martin's Press, June 2005), as well as Death on the Fourth of July: The Story of a Killing, a Trial, and Hate Crime in America (Palgrave/St. Martin's, 2004), and In God's Country: The Patriot Movement and the Pacific Northwest (1999, WSU Press). His reportage for on domestic terrorism won the National Press Club Award for Distinguished Online Journalism in 2000.