Last night Hillary Clinton could finally walk on stage at the DNC and accept the nomination she has fought so hard for and so deserve. I don´t know who was more touched, everyone rooting for her or Hillary herself. I got goose bumps and cried happy tears. This is how making history feels. This is what shattering the glass ceiling looks like. It´s the first time in US history that a major party has nominated a woman for President.
The 2016 US Presidential election is also about leadership. It´s about a choice between two leadership styles: leadership based on fear or leadership based on hope and togetherness. Donald Trump is a classic fear-based leader. Some have even compared him to Stalin and Hitler. This type of leadership can be efficient for a period of time, but is never sustainable. It is also destructive and dangerous.
I wrote in my blog last week that Trump should go more presidential if he wants to increase his chances. Instead he chooses to publically encourage Russia to conduct espionage against Hillary Clinton. This shows that Trump has no understanding of the US role in the world, and little of the role of being President. If he keeps up like this, he will surely lose.
In an interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour, former Defense Secretary and CIA Director Leon Panetta took the comments as clear-cut, questioning Trump’s loyalty to the United States: «No presidential candidate who’s running to be president of the United States ought to be asking a foreign country, particularly Russia, to engage in hacking or intelligence efforts to try to determine what the Democratic candidate may or may not be doing.»
Watching the Democratic National Convention (DNC) this week, they did everything I hoped for. They came across as one strong team standing together in hope and vision, in stark contrast to the RNC last week.
Bernie Sanders showed us what a great man he is by putting the team in front of himself with integrity and class.
Michelle Obama held the speech of a lifetime connecting emotionally. I wasn´t the only one who thought we possibly saw a future President. Most likely, she will have a position on a Hillary´s team in 2017 if she wants it, as will Bernie Sanders.
Bill and Chelsea Clinton, and so many others touched our hearts from the DNC stage. President Obama showed us again what a great speaker, leader and nice guy he is. All in all, everyone helped Hillary with the heart and soul aspect that she needs to strengthen.
In Hillary´s acceptance speech that lasted a bit over an hour, she talked about what she does best – politics. No candidate has been more qualified to be President than her in modern history. She was also more emotional than normal. This was Hillary being herself at her best.
Earlier this week, some Bernie-fans tried to stop Hillary from being nominated, despite the fact that Bernie himself is all in for Hillary. Comedian Sarah Silverman said it best to the Bernie or Bust crowd at DNC: “You´re being ridiculous”.
Many Republicans blame Obama for what they experience as a worsened economy the past eight years. Thus, they understandibly want change and Hillary does not represent change to them. She is seen as Obama´s third term. However, the economic facts can be seen from different perspectives. On many factors Obama and Biden have improved the US economy significantly. Nearly 15 million new private sector jobs, 20 million more with health insurance and an auto industry that just had its best year ever.
Taking over an economic crisis from Republican George W. Bush in 2008, it is surely possible to argue what the Democrats do. However, any sitting President whether Republican or Democrat, are part of a bigger picture in this increasingly global age. Thus, Hillary´s foreign policy experience is crucial in seeing the US role in the world, a role that has changed in the past decades with China and other nations on the rise.
Yes, this election is about shattering the glass ceiling once and for all. It is about a female role model that leads the way on equality, making it easier for anyone who wants to follow in her footsteps. Equality between men and women is not there yet, not in leadership or elsewhere. We can never rest until true equality prevails.
But equally important in this election is what kind of leadership we want in the world. Do we want one based on fear or one based on hope, competence, togetherness and love? The answer should be easy. That is why I´m more optimistic than ever that Hillary Clinton is the next US President. I have faith in humanity when it comes down to it on November 8th. She has always been my candidate. Now I hope the DNC also strengthened her candidacy among US voters.
Leadership is also about picking a great running mate. Senator Tim Kaine was a smart choice and they come across as two leaders that respect and like each other. A team that can´t wait to start working together, as opposed to Trump/Pence, and that matters.
I lost a bottle of champagne in 2008 when Obama beat her to it. In January 2017, if Hillary wins in November, I´m going to Washington DC for the inauguration of our first US Madame President. And yes, I purposely use “our”, because this is is about so much more than a national election. She leads the way for all women and all leaders, male or female.
She is a role model in so many ways regardless of her sex. The way she keeps fighting for what she believes in and how she never gives up despite constant set backs. Her strong intellect as her primary strength, combined with her ability to listen and willingness to learn. Her inspiring values and hard working attitude, and the fact that she is a team player. She portrays great leadership.
In the words of the Democrats´campaign slogans: “Love trumps hate”, “Stronger together” and “I´m with her”. This week, the Democrats communicated these powerful and inspiring words convincingly. I don´t think the party ever had a stronger team than this one going forward. And every great leader knows that she or he cannot do it alone, contrary to what Trump professes. A great leader builds a great team that supports each other, making each other better in order to reach a united vision.
Hillary Clinton is such a leader. She brings hope to an increasingly challenged and polarized world. May US voters elect her in November in the interest not only of themselves, but for a better world.
Because this election is about so much more than the US, and Hillary Clinton is well respected and admired around the world. Most Europeans honestly don´t understand why this election isn´t an obvious one. But we do respect your freedom to choose your own leader.
From a Norwegian perspective, we hope you choose love over fear. We hope you choose competence over showmanship. We hope you choose ´us´ over ´I´. We hope you chose hope over threats.
We hope you vote Hillary Clinton as the next President of the USA.