If Anybody Can Lose, Hillary Can
She’s got baggage, outdated ideology and just isn’t likable.
Hillary Clinton seems set to officially become the Democrat presidential nominee when the party faithful gather at the convention this summer. “I will be the nominee,” she declared Thursday. But despite talks for the last, oh, 20 years of the possibility of another Clinton presidency, it’s within the realm of possibility that Hillary may actually get trounced — by Donald Trump.
Even though she’s been priming for 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue for decades, Mrs. Bill is hardly a prize candidate for the Left. She’s the supposed champion of women’s rights who stood by her man and against a certain White House intern and other “bimbo eruptions” — Hillary’s term for Bill’s other sexual predation victims. And the secretary of state who lied to the families of the Benghazi victims. Then there are those pesky State Department emails, and Whitewater, the Clinton Foundation money trail, and so on and so forth. Hillary’s scandals make Watergate look like kids’ play. It’s little wonder that the Left’s exuberance in heralding her candidacy is hardly, well, exuberant.
Furthermore, her ideological moorings are not mainstream among Democrats any more. As Peggy Noonan writes, “Clinton’s struggles this year are connected in part to her ideological unreliability, to the sense that she’s a generation behind ideologically, that she’s got the wrong attitude toward Wall Street and the use of military power. She’s old school; we’re entering something new.”
Add to this the fact that Mrs. Clinton isn’t particularly likable (which was why Barack Obama’s “likeable enough” jab was so painful in 2008), and the result is a candidate that, in many ways, is the opposition’s dream. Indeed, The Washington Post reports that Clinton’s advisers are “working to soften her stiff public image” and that one longtime supporter flat out said, “[W]e can’t give her an injection to make her an energetic candidate.”
This is why her every point, smile and laugh on the stump is exaggerated to the point of being obnoxious. She’s overcompensating.
Ironically, the very Leftmedia that has gone to great lengths to advance Hillary’s career hasn’t done her the favor imagined. As Ben Shapiro recently argued, the media has unintentionally destroyed Clinton “by shielding her from the sort of character attacks Donald Trump has weathered for decades.” When news guests brought up Bill’s sex addiction, media “pulled the plug.” When people criticized Hillary’s Benghazi mendacity, media cried “sexism,” and so forth. “To protect the ruler,” Shapiro writes, “the Roman Praetorian Guard had to form a phalanx. The media did so for Clinton for decades.” But with Trump now the attacker, the media can no longer stand guard. Meanwhile, Trump has had no such perimeter. His warts-and-all history has been publicized for years, and his is actually an advantage.
Then there’s the Bernie factor. Who’d have thought a 74-year-old socialist would gain such a following? Apparently not the Democrat party, which we suspect let Sanders run only as a token opposition candidate. But something funny happened on the way to Hillary’s coronation — he actually proved to be a lot more popular than anticipated (and he’s gunning for California to prove it). The irony is, this is less a reflection of Bernie’s appeal and more an indication of Hillary’s lack of appeal.
According to a new Fox News poll, just 31% of voters believe Clinton is honest and trustworthy. A whopping 66% think she is not. (And it’s no wonder.) Even within her own party, Hillary is struggling to secure support. Of the last 20 primaries, Clinton has won just eight, while Sanders has tallied 12.
Investor’s Business Daily notes, “To make matters worse, 150 ‘superdelegates’ — who can pick their candidate independent of any primary — could put Clinton over the top right now by announcing their support for her but … they are still refusing to do so.”
What’s more, the woman who’s been on the path to this moment for decades is actually trailing Trump in some national polls. This week, the Fox News and Rasmussen polls placed Trump ahead of Clinton by three and five points, respectively. Clinton bested Trump by six points in a CBS News/NY Times poll, and she still leads the average by almost four points. Yet, in a Sanders-Trump matchup, Fox News and CBS News/NY Times polls ranked Sanders on top by four and 13 points, respectively. In other words, Clinton is so unappealing that the septuagenarian socialist is polling as the more formidable Trump opponent.
Hillary’s long history in the political spotlight isn’t helping her, either. As Trump’s ascension proves, voters want an outsider. And while Trump, and even Sanders to some degree, can claim this description, Hillary Clinton most certainly cannot.
Of course, the Electoral College map may still be in Clinton’s favor, but if this election season has proven anything, it’s that nothing is a sure bet.
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