The Pat-on-the-Back Factor

2008 could be a historic election. But should the President be an affirmative-action hire?

CJ Gunther / EPA

Democratic presidential hopeful Senators Hillary Clinton of New York, left, and Barack Obama of Illinois, right, laugh during the Democratic Debate at Saint Anselm College in Manchester, N.H.

Things could change, of course, but right now the odds are looking pretty good that the next President of the United States will be either a woman or an African American. We would hardly be the first nation to put a woman or a minority member in charge--in fact, we're considerably behind in that category. Disraeli, a Jew, was British Prime Minister in the 19th century. But President of the United States is something else again. Other countries--let me see now--well, other countries don't invest their head of government with the power to push a button and destroy the world, do they?...

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