How Obama Can Get Clinton Voters; Be Straight

Why didn't Obama choose Hillary as his running mate? It's a question he needs to answer.
Hillary Clinton's speech has been highlighted, delivered and duly dissected. Bill's, too. But, as focus shifts to Obama, the elephant in the hall that will linger past the DNC convention for the nearly 9 million engaged Hillary voters that aren't yet throwing their vote to Obama is the question: why didn't he choose her as his running mate? The Democratic Party would be naïve to suggest these people just 'get over it,' Hillary's verbal push and roll call acclamation not withstanding.

Hate her or love her. It's still a valid question given the 18 million votes and major swing states she captured, particularly for the women who did and do identify with her, and for the men who advocate equality. And it's a question that Obama needs to at least acknowledge, if not address.

Why? First, because the Vice President selection was his first major decision. Second, in the absence of a resounding statement from camp Obama, the blogosphere and punditsphere have filled in the gap with elementary school playground type excuses: she's too divisive, he couldn't deal with Bill down the hall, the Clintons are too powerful, not trustworthy, she wouldn't have wanted it anyway, her ambitions are set on the top spot.
Nomi Prins is a journalist and Senior Fellow at Demos, a non-partisan public policy research and advocacy organization. She is the author of Other People's Money: The Corporate Mugging of America and Jacked: How "Conservatives" are Picking your Pocket (whether you voted for them or not).