The Hillary Problem

I’m going on record with this prediction: The Republicans will win the White House and retain control of Congress in 2016. OK, let me back up for a moment. If the Democrats run Hillary Clinton as their presidential nominee, the Republicans will win the White House and retain control of Congress in 2016.

There have been a number of news stories about the number of makeovers (just about a story for every makeover) that Hillary Clinton’s public persona is being put through, written by Washington Post columnists who tended to practice their pro-Democratic punditry on the all liberal shows which no longer populate MSNBC. In fact, it sheds itself of Rachel and Lawrence (are there any other liberals still left on air?) it will complete its conversion to right wing TV programming by renaming itself Kit, which is a baby Fox. But I digress. Two examples of the ongoing search to find a Hillary Clinton who will click with more than her current voter base.

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/opinion/the-inept-bloated-clinton-campaign/ar-AAectUA?li=BBieRxq

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/08/us/politics/hillary-clinton-to-show-more-humor-and-heart-aides-say.html?_r=0

All of this punditry claiming she’s the front runner because she’s 30 points about of Bernie Sanders among Democrats and is the favorite among female Democratic voters is crap, for want of a better word I don’t want to use here. If anything she’s bleeding poll points and her handlers are looking ahead to looking back at 2008 all over again. If Clinton’s lead was so solid and formidable her handlers would not be tweaking her image so much in a frantic attempt to find something that clicks. So, this week Hillary is “funny” on the talk shows. You can see it on her face and hear it in her voice: “See? I’m being funny! Aren’t I being funny?” And now tough from the tough look on her face and her tough voice: “See? I’m tough! Aren’t I being tough?” And compassionate: “See the concern on my face? And don’t I sound concerned?”

It’s all image. Throughout all the funny, tough, and compassionate performances, not one word of substance has been issued through her mouth or through press releases. She wants to lower the cost of college for students and reduce the student loan debit load for borrowers. But how? “Aren’t I being compassionate?” is as specific as she gets. She’s talked about economic reform (“Aren’t I being tough?”)
while at the same time taking political contributions from corporations who benefit from the current economic policies.

It’s clear that she’s targeted being the first woman president for a long time, possibly before she met Bill. She attempted to share his presidency but she quickly distanced herself from him after Bill couldn’t get the Republican health insurance plan passed by Republicans. I would bet that his mishandling of his affair with Monica further increased that distance behind the scenes.

But apparently now she feels entitled to the presidency and that’s her problem because that’s exactly the way she comes across to liberals. Her supporters are trying to force feed her down the throat of the liberal wing of the Democratic Party using scare tactics to make the harsh medicine go down. “It’s Hillary or a Republican in the White House!”

But the Left isn’t swallowing it. Hence the ongoing efforts of her campaign managers to find a flavor of Hillary that will help the medicine go down. Because every flavor of Hillary tastes artificial. When you hear Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren talk you hear their authenticity, their commitment to their specific stances on issues and their proposed specific policies. Elizabeth Warren is engaging on talk shows, effortlessly being funny and serious by turns. Bernie talks tough because Bernie IS tough. His record on how he stands on issues along with his voting record speaks for itself.

Clinton knows that her voting record is a source of deep concern among liberals with her support of the Iraq invasion and her support of the USA PATRIOT Act and other right wing positions. As a Democratic U.S. senator she made a great Republican. And for that the Left doesn’t trust her and she knows that if she’s to not only snag the nomination and the election she’ll need the Left, Right, and Center of the Democratic Party along with all the Independents and disgruntled Republican voters she can muster.

But again, Hillary Clinton’s problem is one of lack of authenticity. Anyone other than her core supporters have no idea who she really is. And the person they think she is they don’t like or trust. She changes personas like she changes clothes for different political rallies, fundraisers, and interviews. It isn’t “Where In The World Is Carmen Santiago?” but “Who In The World Is Hillary Clinton?” If she and her managers can’t figure out who she is, how will people figure out which Hillary they want to vote for? They can’t and they won’t. That changes the actual threat to “If it’s Hillary there will be a Republican in the White House.” This is the reason the GOP very much wants to see Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign derailed. They never learned how to beat a populist Democratic candidate because they’ve never had to run against one. With Hillary, they’re looking at virtually one of their own. If you remember back to 2000 when Karl Rove derailed John McCain’s presidential campaign, the GOP definitely knows how to take out its own.

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