Ferraro had charisma

Letter to the editor Centre Daily Times, published April 3, 2011. 

I was standing on the floor of the Democratic National Convention in 1984 counting as each of the state’s delegations went through the time honored ritual of formally endorsing Geraldine Ferraro to be vice president of the United States.

Few people realize the twin significance of the events at the Moscone Center that night:

The convention nominated the first woman ever to be a heartbeat away from being president; and this was the last election where a presidential nominee of either party promised to reindustrialize the U.S. The Mondale-Ferraro administration would have made keeping industrial jobs in the U.S, especially in places like central Pennsylvania, a major priority.

The obituaries of Ferraro discussed her husband’s financial problems. If only she had become vice president. Sadly, events, many of which were out of her control, destroyed her career.

I had met Ferraro at a formal dinner in Washington, D.C. The overused word charisma comes to mind. It would be unfortunate if we failed to recognize the incredible gift Geraldine Ferraro gave the American people of both sexes when she broke that glass ceiling.

Joel Solkoff State College