When yours truly made it to the Church Street Marketplace in Burlap this afternoon, Anne O'Brien of Richmond had already been on the street more than three hours. The Democratic "activist" from the Burlington 'burbs showed no sign of being down after her candidate, Hillary Clinton's third-place finish in the Iowa Caucuses behind Sens. Barack Obama and former Sen. John Edwards.
"I think it was great," O'Brien told yours truly. "I think Obama's great. John Edwards is a good guy. And Hillary will be the nominee," she added. "I'm just sure of it."
[Wonder if a person so gifted with certainty goes to Saratoga in August?]
Why is she behind Hillary Clinton?
"She’s smarter," said O'Brien. "She has the resume, aside from everything else. Take away race, gender Put up the resumes for who you want to be the CEO of the country - she’s it!"
Think we can handle a woman president?
"Absolutely. We need one."
Anne then asked a passing mother and daughter if they'd sign the petition to get Hillary on the Vermont Primary ballot.
Jane Helmstetter, 55, of South Burlington was happy to sign [right]. What was her reaction to Hillary's surprisingly poor Iowa finish?
"I was shocked a little bit," she answered frankly. "Surprised, certainly, that she didn’t come in ahead of Edwards." But she noted that, "Iowa doesn’t always signify what’s going to happen later on."
Her daughter Maria Diferdinando, 22, [behind her] also signed on.
"I think people find it easier to slander Hillary," said Maria. "That’s why she’s having a harder time. It's easier to say bad things about her because she’s been in the spotlight. There’s been more stuff about her out there and decisions that she’s made."
And what If Barack were the nominee?
"I’d be fine with that," replied O'Brien the Clinton for President volunteer. "I will vote for the Democratic nominee."