By George Hewes
If you have been disgusted by the cynicism and duplicity of the Obama administration, and are looking for a fresh, new chapter in American politics to begin, you may want to avert your eyes for the next sixteen months. The early stages of the Hillary Clinton presidential campaign hint at what will be the most ersatz, substance-free and insulting political campaign the old republic has ever seen.
To borrow a phrase she once hurled at Gen. David Petraeus, to support Hillary’s campaign requires the willing suspension of disbelief. She wants to be the champion of the middle class, but you must ignore the fact that she has been a filthy rich oligarch for more than 20 years. She claims to represent women’s rights, yet pays her female staff less than the men. She wants to use “smart power” to execute a better foreign policy, but her mismanagement of the State Department is a big reason why U.S. foreign policy is crumbling today.
In order to distract from these unpleasant facts, the winged monkeys at Hillary’s Brooklyn headquarters will play the, “Never mind that–look at this shiny thing!”, game on a level that will make Barack Obama seem like a plainspoken truth teller. This was on display during Madam Secretary’s recent speech at Texas Southern University. There was no time to answer questions about why she violated government protocols in deleting 30,000 emails from a private server in the basement of her mansion. Did you know there are phantom Republicans who are trying to deny black people the right to vote by advocating for voter IDs?
Marco Rubio must stir feelings of Nixonian paranoia at Team Hillary, because they have already targeted him for character assassination as only Democrats can do. Republican Party chair Reince Priebus recently suggested that Hillary’s research group American Bridge planted the New York Times stories about Rubio’s traffic violations and boat purchase. If that is true, then the wizards at the Clinton campaign are not only vicious, but tin-eared as well. Instead of wounding Rubio, the stories made the Times look hyper-partisan (go figure!) and Rubio seem more like an everyman. And this is the vaunted political machine the Republicans are supposed to fear.
In a way–a very small way–you have to empathize with Hillary’s political team. Saddled with a charisma-challenged, scandal-plagued candidate, they really have no choice but to distract and play dirty. Don’t expect any Reagan-style appeals to people’s best instincts coming from this bunch.