Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Vindication for Vilsack

Exactly two years ago, an impressive man with an odd name started running for president. Meeting Tom Vilsack moved me to write about him under the heading, "Can Competence Compete?"

In his case, the answer turned out to be no, and Vilsack went on to back Hillary Clinton before finally falling in line behind Barack Obama, who tomorrow will name him as his Secretary of Agriculture.

The appointment of someone who opposed him twice will confirm once again that the new president values competence over personal loyalty, an important trait when the country needs all the brains and good judgment it can get.

An orphan with a troubled adoptive family history, Vilsack, the former governor of Iowa, identifies with the struggles of American families and, for a start, will empathize with them rather than the corporations who dominate farming.

He will serve Obama and the rest of us very well.

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