The Wall Street Journal’s Dan Henninger recently crafed his idea of what Hillary Clinton’s “concession speech” would be like (complete with stage directions!):

This has been the most gratifying experience of my life. Together, we sent a message into this political system that will not be forgotten. (Pause for cheers.) That’s right. You will not be forgotten. Your hopes, your needs, your dreams. [Shout this line]: They know about them now, don’t they? (Pause for cheers.) …

We came up a little short. (Pause for booing.) But boy, we came close. …

I’m proud to be the first woman to almost win a presidential nomination. …

Some in the media said our primary victories were divisive. Really? We remember when these voters were called Reagan Democrats and voted Republican. I guess now they’d have to be called Hillary Democrats! My hope this fall is that they’ll be Obama Democrats.

Some will ask if I think Sen. Obama can win. It is my honest intention to attend the inauguration of President Barack Obama in January 2009 (pause for scattered boos). He’s going to make us proud this November. It will also forever be my intention to stand and fight for the future of the Democratic Party and the people of America. Your hopes. Your needs. Your dreams. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

(Sound system brings up “Here’s to the Next Time” by Elton John.)

Although this hews closely to standard boilerplate (second item), The Stiletto could not picture Hillary uttering that boldfaced bit. As a feminist, The Stiletto wanted Hillary to take the “I am woman, hear me roar” tack: 

“As daughters, wives, and mothers women are nurturing and selfless. Carrying these traits into the professional world, women are expected to mentor younger and less experienced men to become the boss, and to be altruistic enough to sacrifice their own dreams and ambitions for ‘the good of the team.’ Well, NOT THIS TIME!

“Having come so very close to breaking the ultimate glass ceiling, I will not take a back seat to a man, even if he is African American. Our numbers are too big to ignore: Fifty-six percent of the women in this country are Democrats; there are more than 112.8 million women of voting age in the U.S.; and 65 percent of women voted in the 2004 election. Superdelegates: Do. The. Math.”

According to conflicting press reports earlier in the day, Hillary either was or was not going to concede the nomination to Obama, and had volunteered herself to be his helpmeet – once more the woman behind the man – so The Stiletto wasn’t holding out much hope for this outcome.

Hillary’s speech (video link) in NYC last night was following Henninger’s script more or less, when without warning she veered off into FTS territory and told her supporters: “I will be making no decisions tonight” – the crowd went wild – “in the coming days, I’ll be consulting with supporters and party leaders to determine how to move forward with the best interests of our party and our country guiding my way.” (No doubt, the Obama team’s collective reaction was, “WTF?” and the champagne corks stopped popping, if only for a few minutes as they contemplated what Hillary’s defiance meant.)

You can bend but never break me / ‘Cause it only serves to make me / More determined to achieve my final goal.

You go, grrl! 

Note: The Stiletto writes about politics and other stuff at The Stiletto Blog, chosen an Official Honoree in the Political Blogs category by the judges of the 12th Annual Webby Awards (the Oscars of the online universe) along with CNN Political Ticker, Swampland (Time magazine) and The Caucus (The New York Times).

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