Vicious anti white, anti male editorial
At the borders of the state where Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama have waged what could be the ultimate contest of their seemingly endless 2008 marathon, there should be signs: "WELCOME TO PENNSYLVANIA — YOU ARE NOW IN THE 19TH CENTURY."
Call it the Retro State, trapped in amber between the Civil War and the 1960s civil rights revolt, which it managed to ignore.
The irony of today's Pennsylvania primary is that the historic race and gender confrontation between Obama and Clinton is being staged in one of the most reluctant states to elect a woman or African-American to major office. Until now, that has been the only way to win big in Pennsylvania — be male and pale.
For Obama, the racial hurdle should have been daunting. Though there have been a few black judges, no African-American has had a realistic chance at being elected Pennsylvania's governor or U.S. senator. The last black candidate for governor was Pittsburgh Steelers hero Lynn Swann, a Republican who lost by 22 points in 2006. More telling, Rep. Chaka Fattah is the only African-American from Pennsylvania in Congress, one of only four in state history.
No wonder blustery Gov. Ed Rendell, a Hillary rooter, has said some of his constituents are maybe "not ready to vote for an African-American candidate."
For Clinton, the glass ceiling should have been equally discouraging. Pennsylvania isn't cozy turf for female candidates — none has ever come close to being elected governor or senator, although there are 16 women in the U.S. Senate. The anomaly is current Lt. Gov. Catherine Baker Knoll, who occupies the highest post any woman has achieved. But the numbers get worse — of 19 Pennsylvanians in the U.S. House, only Rep. Allyson Schwartz is female, one of six in history. And in the male bastion of the state Legislature, less than 15% are women, a lowly rank of 43rd in the USA.