Hillary can't do it. As one of the three in ten, I can tell you this: I don't support Obama now for the same reason that I didn't support him during the primary. I have been a fan of the man for years, but I don't think he's qualified - at this point in his career - to be president. Only Obama can convince us that he would make a better president than John McCain. Hillary can't do bupkis.
Proof of this is that she's been making strenuous efforts to support Obama and they're not registering. She made the most unifying concession speech in history. She has been actively stumping for Obama, appealing over and over to her supporters to support him. Not only are her supporters refusing to budge, but the media is asserting that she's not even trying. Witness an article in the Globe & Mail recently questioning her support for Obama (in complete opposition to the evidence); and a Diane Francis article that described Hilllary's concession speech as ungracious - which anyone who heard it would know is a bare-faced lie.
We might support our party just on partisan grounds, despite our qualms. But there is a huge rift in the party. Women were humiliated by the treatment of Hillary Clinton in the primaries. We haven't forgotten, when she was attacked in a debate for being unlikeable, Obama's condescending, snarky "You're likeable enough, Hillary." We haven't forgotten his half-hearted response to his pastor's vicious attack on her. Most of all, we are wounded by the vicious sexist attacks during the campaign. If Obama wants to bring us around, he needs to address our concerns.
Just as he made a moving speech about race, Obama needs to address gender issues in America. Women are incensed that the media and the Democratic party have all denied that there was sexism in the primaries. All of it has been denied: the comments about castration and ankles and cackle; the over-emphasis on the candidate's male spouse; the heckles and the insults. There was not only widespread refusal to take seriously a woman candidate, but the female candidate was ridiculed and demonized for being female. We're mad not on Hillary's behalf but on our own behalf.
So that's Obama's challenge. Convince us that you're better qualified than John McCain to meet the difficult, pragmatic challenges ahead; and address our concerns about the role of women in politics. So far Obama has been unsuccessful in the former and has shown no interest in the latter. If he doesn't change his approach - radically - then many women, myself included, may think about staying home on election day. And maybe that's not such a bad thing. It's time to send a message that we're a demographic that deserves some attention. In the short term we'd get stuck with another Republican president for four more years (it's unlikely McCain could seek a second term), but in the long run we might make great strides for women's equality. If Obama doesn't step up, I propose that women boycott the election. It's time to say enough is enough.