by Max Brantley
REPUBLICAN NEWS RELEASE
Dear Senator Hillary Clinton,
Upon your return to Arkansas this weekend, the state Republican Party wondered… Would the New York Senator feel out of place? Would she worry that she couldn’t fit in? Would she be mocked for using her fake southern accent after the embarrassing ribbing that she received for pandering in Selma, Alabama a few months ago?
Well fear not, Senator Clinton – Republicans are rolling out the red carpet and are dropping off a care package at the Arkansas Democrat headquarters today with a few tools intended to make you feel more at home once you’re south of the Mason-Dixon Line.
Upon your arrival in Little Rock, we hope you’ll have some time to peruse the Dixie dictionary that we purchased, The Complete How to Speak Southern, which is “dedicated to all Yankees in the hope that it will teach them to talk right” in the South.
While this small token is simply intended as lighthearted suggested reading, we thought it could lend some helpful refreshers on ways to disguise your New York dialect with a southern twang – especially after your embarrassing performance in Alabama. (*In case you forgot about that mishap, here’s the video of your speech: http://youtube.com/watch?v=YaDQ1vIuvZI )
According to one of your own home-state papers, “Senator Clinton may have drawn rousing ovations during her appearances at civil rights rallies in Selma, Ala., on Sunday, but it was not what she said that stirred the most buzz yesterday - it was how she said it. A 27-second snippet of audio clips … showed New York’s Illinois-born senator adopting a Southern drawl during parts of her speech at a Selma church.” (“Clinton Stirs Buzz On The Web With Her Southern Drawl,” The New York Sun, 3/6/07)
And MSNBC’s Tucker Carlson added that, “Hillary Clinton morphs into Scarlett O’Hara. Well, she talks like her anyway.” (MSNBC’s “Tucker,” 3/5/07)
In addition to adjusting your drawl, we thought you might feel improperly attired for the South, so we’re dropping off a Razorback’s cap that should help you fit in with the locals. Yes, our style might not be as refined as that of your New York constituents, but we hope these gifts will make you feel more at home here in Arkansas.
Unfortunately, no matter how you dress or what you say, there’s not much we can do to disguise the fact that you’re still a liberal Senator from New York who is out of touch with Arkansans’ mainstream values.
Your record on the important issues speaks for itself:
You voted against funding for our troops, bowing to pressure from MoveOn.org and your liberal base, even though you originally agreed with President Bush and voted to authorize the war in Iraq. (H.R. 2206, CQ Vote #181, 5/24/07; H.J. Res. 114, CQ Vote #237, 10/11/02)
By voting against the 2001 and 2003 Republican-led tax cuts, you voted against tax relief that benefits nearly one million Arkansans and approximately 224,000 businesses in this state. (H.R. 2, CQ Vote #196, 5/23/03; H.R. 2, CQ Vote #179, 5/15/03; H.R. 1836, CQ Vote #170, 5/26/01; H.R. 1836, CQ Vote #165, 5/23/01; United States Department Of The Treasury, Office Of Tax Policy, “Tax Relief Kit,” www.treas.gov , 6/20/07)
You also opposed making the Republican-led tax relief permanent, which will cost a family of four making $50,000 in Arkansas today a whopping $2,100. (Russell Berman, “Clinton’s Big Tax Hike,” The New York Sun , 5/30/07; HR 4297, CQ Vote #118, 5/11/06; United States Department Of The Treasury, “Fact Sheet – 2011 Taxes: Millions Could See Billions In Increases,” www.treasury.gov , 8/25/06)
Despite these facts, we hope you enjoy your trip. Because we know that the more time you spend faking your southern roots and touting your liberal New York values here in Arkansas, the more likely voters in this state will elect another Republican president next year.
The Republican Party of Arkansas