Dee Dee Myers Quotes
When I joined Bill Clinton’s start-up presidential campaign in 1991, I was confident that women would play an ever more important role, but I never gave a minute’s thought to what would happen if we won. When we did – and I became the first woman to serve as White House press secretary – it changed my life. But it didn’t change the world.
When I first started working in politics, as a junior aide on Walter Mondale’s 1984 presidential campaign, it never occurred to me that I would one day work in the White House. There were plenty of women among the volunteers who stuffed envelopes and walked precincts. But there were fewer and fewer on each successive level of influence and access.
I know I made plenty of mistakes in my tenure. But one of the things that you learn is to be very careful and to protect yourself down the road a little bit, which is to say you’ve got to think ahead and think where is the story going to go? What are all the possible outcomes? And how do I protect the president from unexpected twists and turns in the road?
Campaigns often make standing on principle the highest of virtues – and listening to your opponents a sure sign of weakness. It’s the virtual opposite of what it takes to succeed in office. Squaring the circle takes a powerful combination of skills. But presidents who can campaign and compromise are generally the most successful.
Palin was a political Hail Mary, a long bomb in the closing minutes of a game that John McCain and Co. were certain to lose. They didn’t care if she had the policy or political or emotional capacity to serve as vice president, let alone president. They were willing to drive the country off a cliff, if that’s what it took to win.