None of the American leading presidential candidates whether Democrats or Republicans, showed up at the Arab American Institute national conference held this week in Detroit.Frontrunner Hillary Clinton did not disappoint--unless the Arab leadership was actually looking for specifics from the woman who kissed Suha Arafat:
Some 600 Arab American leaders participated in the parley, considered to be the Arab equivalent of the annual American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).
The senior Democratic candidates made due with a recorded message. Senator Hillary Clinton did not mention the word "Palestine" or "Palestinian state," but made due with a general promise to renew the peace process with "an effort to grant peace and security to Israel and the Palestinians." Clinton said in a recording sent to the conference that the US under her leadership would be regularly involved in the US "in a way that will prevent violence and renew faith in America in the area."Democrats seem to feel they have a lock on the Arab vote with vague promises and the war in Iraq--but what if Al Qaeda really is defeated and Iraq acquires a real measure of peace and stability by next year, what then? Would the Arab vote still be in the Democratic Party's back pocket? Unlike the Jewish vote, the Arab vote did go Republican before, back in 2000. Who's to say it cannot happen again? What would it take?