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September 20, 2003

HILLARY MANIA....I'm just curious: am I the only one who's completely bewildered by the endless stream of of Hillary conjecturing from both left and right? Will she get in the race? Does she want someone else in the race? Does she want to be VP? How about being a losing VP so she's positioned for 2008? Or does she really just want the Democrats to lose completely next year so that she will be nominated by acclamation in '08?

Oh, and is she the spawn of Satan or merely a conniving and devious bitch?

Now, I don't have the slightest idea what her motivations really are, and I'm not actually much of a political junkie. But my gut feeling ever since — well, ever since forever, is that there is no chance in hell that she would ever get either nominated or elected. Regardless of what anyone thinks of her personally, she's a wildly divisive figure and has absolutely no chance of ever becoming president short of Jesus himself descending from heaven and telling people to vote for her. And even that might not do it.

What am I missing here?

Posted by Kevin Drum at September 20, 2003 06:22 PM | TrackBack


mostly agreed. just a "scare tactic" for fundraising purposes by the right.

Posted by: Atrios at September 20, 2003 06:23 PM | PERMALINK

What Atrios said.

She had become the perfect bogey (wo)man for the fanatical right. Nothing makes a winger run to the checkbook faster than a plea for a donation to help stop the "Evil Hitllary's" plans for world domination.

Look at it this way, the Right has invested tons of time, money and effort into demonizing anything Clinton. Now is the time for them to collect on that investment.

Posted by: Clownshoes at September 20, 2003 06:32 PM | PERMALINK

Or so the Chinese would have you believe.

Posted by: WillieStyle at September 20, 2003 06:40 PM | PERMALINK

Start a new meme: Hillary plans to run in '12, not '08, so that she can appoint Chelsea as her VP in '16 (first year Chelsea is legally old enough), thereby perpetuating the Clinton dynasty through the '20 adn '24 elections. Hillary and Janet Reno concocted this plan around when Chelsea was born. Bill being President was just the first step in their plan.

Posted by: arthur at September 20, 2003 06:43 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin, I'm a little disappointed in your comments about Hillary, and I think you are wrong. She is admired by a great many people. (look at her book sales) Its true that the right wing rabidly hates her, but so what, they hated Bill Clinton too and will hate any successful Democratic candidate. It may be too early for her to run now, I believe her when she says she wants to fulfill her senatorial obligation, but, as she gets older, I think her public image will become stronger. Its easy for me to think that she could be a very formidable presidential candidate by 2008.

Posted by: Another Bruce at September 20, 2003 06:43 PM | PERMALINK

Certainly Hillary is the best fundraiser to ever grace the top of the GOP hit list, but she IS ambitious. While I don't (yet) see her as being a candidate this year, there is the 2008 election, especially if the inside dope is that Bush has alrady won the 2004 (s)election. Going up against 43 might not be so easy a win, but who in their right-wing mind would vote for Jeb? She would be a shoo-in, assuming we still have elections by then.

Posted by: pessimist at September 20, 2003 06:47 PM | PERMALINK

Head-to-head against GWB, Hillary polls as well or better than most Democrats.

Posted by: obruni at September 20, 2003 06:54 PM | PERMALINK

Like her or hate her, she would whip chimps ass in a debate, if he even bothers to debate in 04'. I am not sure what I think of her, but definitely know I would have a great deal of respect for her if she was my opponent. As far as electability, see soccer mom's, minorities, and the elderly.

Posted by: chris/tx at September 20, 2003 07:00 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, I don't think Hillary is a very promising story either. And how come nobody's conjecturing about Lieberman's weirdo Falwell-zionist thing? I'd rather see that mud slung, and I'm bored of Hillary.

Posted by: spacetoast at September 20, 2003 07:03 PM | PERMALINK

I agree, but then again I saw Bush as a "wildly divisive figure", and it didn't stop him.

Posted by: Robuzo at September 20, 2003 07:05 PM | PERMALINK

I think Hillary's presidential potential is roughly what Ted Kennedy's was at the same point in his senatorial career.

Posted by: P6 at September 20, 2003 07:22 PM | PERMALINK

Hmph... you guys just can't stand strong, competent women...

Posted by: JAGCAP at September 20, 2003 07:27 PM | PERMALINK

"I think Hillary's presidential potential is roughly what Ted Kennedy's was at the same point in his senatorial career."
Well, I guess that she is a strong candidate then, Ted was a strong candidate until Chappaquidick.(sp?)

Posted by: Another Bruce at September 20, 2003 07:34 PM | PERMALINK

Hilary is smart enough to realize that she needs to lay down a solid track record in the Senate before she steps out onto the big stage. I'd be shocked if she made a move toward the White House anytime soon.

Posted by: peter jung at September 20, 2003 07:35 PM | PERMALINK

come on now, I've just been reading on how all the democrats are "pathological" and "ungrounded" in their hatred for gw, the republicans must have solid ground for hating all things Clinton.

Posted by: jjj at September 20, 2003 07:50 PM | PERMALINK

My family hates everything Clinton with an irrational fury, and while I could possibly understand why Bill irked a bunch of longtime Republicans, the Hillary guilt by association always baffled me. To take Kevin's question a bit further: Can anyone list the specific things Republicans cite that make Hillary so bad?

Posted by: Matt W. at September 20, 2003 08:00 PM | PERMALINK

From what I've seen, a great deal of it first-hand, the Right hates Hillary far more than they hate Bill.

Two reasons immediately leap to mind. First is that the sort of troglodyte who bitterly resents a powerful woman is more apt to be found on the right than on the left.

A probably more significant source of Hillary-hatred is that she wasn't personally elected but wielded a fair amount of influence in the Clinton administration. This is, of course, perfectly proper--the President can choose advisors as he sees fit, but if you check your brain at the door you can whip yourself into a frenzy about the way this woman who nobody voted for presumed to craft policy.

I completely agree with Mr. Drum's analysis. The right hates Senator Clinton with an all-consuming white-hot fury, and her presence on any ticket will do far more to energize the enemy's base than it will for her own. For that reason, if for no other, you'd have to be daft to choose her as a running mate. Ms. Clinton will never be VP, though I'm sure she'll someday run and possibly even be nominated.

Posted by: Laertes at September 20, 2003 08:16 PM | PERMALINK

Elected, never. Nominated? In a heartbeat. The 2008 Democratic circular firing squad, nominating a candidate who would become the first 50-state, 70-30 loser in history, would make this year's squabble look like a tea party. That's why Bush must be defeated next year, or we will wander the wilderness until '12 at least. Nothing against Hillary, but come on -- the first woman President will NOT be someone that 40 percent of the electorate already hates.

Posted by: Nick at September 20, 2003 08:20 PM | PERMALINK

Laertes wites:

"A probably more significant source of Hillary-hatred is that she wasn't personally elected but wielded a fair amount of influence in the Clinton administration."

I think that is right. I good bit of the Karl Rove bashing is for the exact same reason (although a good bit more deserved from my point of view).

Posted by: dwight meredith at September 20, 2003 08:34 PM | PERMALINK

Dislike of Hillary began in Bill's first presidential campaign, I believe, since she wasn't exactly the proper subservient wife that would make a good first lady in the eyes of some. It really crystallized with the health care debacle, though, I think, and some people have hated her ever since.

Posted by: PaulB at September 20, 2003 08:35 PM | PERMALINK

I think people hate her chocolate-chip cookies. Or something.

Posted by: andrew at September 20, 2003 08:40 PM | PERMALINK

I'm not actually much of a political junkie.

Bwaaahahahahahaha! Sorry, Kevin, but tell me: beginning with the U.S. population, how severely do I have to restrict my comparison group so you come out as "not much of a political junkie"?

Posted by: Kieran Healy at September 20, 2003 08:40 PM | PERMALINK

And to top it all off, she declined to divorce Bill after Monica.

In other words her marriage is better than yours.

Posted by: David Ehrenstein at September 20, 2003 08:41 PM | PERMALINK

The endless Hillary talk is because there are no other national Dem persons who can generate the same level of response. For the right wing, she is the symbol of everything they hate. For the left and for many women, she is the symbol for everything wrong done to them.

The comparison with Teddy Kennedy is apt in some respects, but the comparison should be with Teddy Kennedy in 1978-1980. The Dem faithful were crazy about him, sparked an insurrection against Carter at the 1978 mid-term convention (invented and/or enhanced for just that purpose). The Kennedy partisans and old-guard liberals were sure he'd be the next president. They seemed utterly baffled when he was soundly rejected. He didn't even win the NH primary, usually a state inclined toward fellow New Englanders (Tsongas beat Clinton in 1992).

Still, Hillary is not responsible for anyone's death, right-wing hate-mongering about Vince Foster notwithstanding. She could experience a Nixon-like rehab/revival. It will take some work on her part in the Senate. Her chances of doing that work would be enhanced by the Dems taking the Senate.

Posted by: James E. Powell at September 20, 2003 08:44 PM | PERMALINK

Dick Morris has a particular fetish for Hillary speculation; about half of his NY Post columns claim some Presidential plot by her. Good grief, man, is there nothing else to write about in New York? If he had a real editor and not a Murdoch flack, he would have been directed to fresher topics long ago.

The sad thing is, eventually (2008, 2012..?) she may well run, thus "vindicating" the stopped clocks which have been (wrongly) predicting it "this time" year after year. Getting it wrong in 2004 won't be evidence of Morris' basic jones for writing fiction, it's just more evidence of Hillary's deviousness! (I'm starting to see the same sort of paranoia from anti-Dean people, btw.)

It makes me wonder if there shouldn't be some similar tantalizing-but-untrue memes out there about Them that get repeated as often. Like, we already know Cheney's off the ticket? Or Bush won't actually run? That late R convention sure leaves plenty of time for a primary challenge to Bush, doesn't it?

And so forth. Let *them* waste energy denying the silly and obviously made-up claims for a while.

Posted by: V of ValueJudgment at September 20, 2003 08:58 PM | PERMALINK

Kieran Healy:


WTF, Kevin?

Posted by: trout at September 20, 2003 09:03 PM | PERMALINK

I'm not wild about her because i see her as opportunistic , with a kind of messianic self-regard. And I'm a liberal.
I think what's truly off-putting (sometimes revolting) about both Clintons is that grandiosity. It's as though they're always playing you.

And they won't pass the torch on until someone pries it from their stone cold fingers. So the Democratic Party will wither, when it ought to have been bringing in new blood.

No wonder they hate Dean

Posted by: jff at September 20, 2003 09:10 PM | PERMALINK

Here is what I think of Hilary Clinton.

No one who the right hates so much can be that bad.

I take the rights position on her the same way I take the catholic position on something; you know you are in good company when you are in disagreement with them.

So, I like Hilary. I don't think I'd like her personally, i.e. I couldn't see having a beer and a joint with her, but I do think she would do a mostly good job as president and I do think she is competent.

Posted by: Tom K at September 20, 2003 09:21 PM | PERMALINK

I have mixed feelings about Hillary's future electability.

On the one hand, I just don't see what the right has on her that would really damage her, should she try for national office. They threw everything they could get their hands on at her, but, in the end, nothing stuck -- nothing. Having her enter the race would reduce them to sputtering impotent rage again, as it did before. But the key word here I think is impotent: they persuaded their flock that she was a witch, but persuaded every one else that they were only witch-hunters. Polls suggest that MOST people have a good regard for her, and I expect that over time this may grow, particularly as the Clinton Presidency starts to seem, in retrospect, almost like a golden era of peace and prosperity.

On the other hand, it IS a daunting task to win a Presidential election as a woman, and any amount of baggage, real or perceived, is probably just too much of a disadvantage for her candidacy to work. Oddly enough, I do think that if she were male, the baggage such as it is would not much weigh her (him?) down. (Though, if she were male, I guess there'd be the gay marriage issue.)

Posted by: frankly0 at September 20, 2003 09:38 PM | PERMALINK

My GOD! Thank god I'm not the only one! My wife and I watch FOX Sunday morning and bet on how long it will take for Tony Snow or Brit Hume to make a mean, completely non-sequitor comment about Hillary. I wish she and Bill would just go away so that Republicans would have to talk about issues instead of just bitching about Hillary all the time. And I say that AS A REPUBLICAN.

Posted by: Head Football Outsider at September 20, 2003 09:42 PM | PERMALINK

Mrs. Clinton is a screen on to which the far right (and much of the mainstream right) have projected their misogynistic anger. She is an example of what was good about feminism movement. She is smart, successful, powerful, and managed to be a good mother too. If the right were not to hate her, they would have to admit that the social revolution that permitted her rise was a positive social change, and not the harbinger of societal decay which they claim.

I am skeptical regarding reports of her ambitions, though I think she may well try out the primary waters in 2008, but realistically she has an enormous mountain of right wing lies and distortions to overcome for her to become president. Moreover, if shaping social policy is her goal and passion (as one would infer from her book), then being a respected and long term sentator is certainly a viable means of achieving that end.

BTW Kevin, is there a way we can avoid having the spaces after the punctuation marks of our comments not be truncated?

Posted by: Dazir at September 20, 2003 10:00 PM | PERMALINK

how about being a losing VP so she's positioned for 2008?

I can't bring to mind any losing VP who was subsequently elected president. Even Nixon didn't lose while running as VP.

Except for the punctuation bit, Dazir sums it neatly. The right's hatred for Hillary is a wonder to behold. If there's anything there beyond misogyny I'm blind to it.

Posted by: bad Jim at September 20, 2003 10:12 PM | PERMALINK

David Brooks has a column in this month's Atlantic in which he points out (in his usual half-sneering way) that no one has been elected from Congress in a zillion years or so; if that's the case (and I can't think of any Congressfolk from either House that prove the thesis wrong) his fellow Republicans shouldn't worry about her. If they want to waste vituperation, fine.

Posted by: Linkmeister at September 20, 2003 10:24 PM | PERMALINK

Empowered women scare the dickens out of guys. But, like Margaret Thatcher, she's made of steel. Has backbone. And, I think people are NOW ready to see one of the few times a woman can really mount the stage.

In the past, where Eleanor Roosevelt was STRONG, and an inside power to contend with within the democratic party; her husband held the public pulpit.

Well, sometimes, like the First Queen Elizabeth in England, it's the woman who pushes the ship of state forward.

In the beginning, I thought the Hillary screaming was coming from the right. Their way of continuing their hate mongering. HOWEVER, it has a recoil. In other words, just as you're familiar with the scream, PIAPS, there are enough people who would enjoy strangling those wing nuts. Pasty faced fat white kids who screamed at the TV screen, letting you believe that if Bush didn't win, there'd be hell to pay.

Oh, no. She's coming! And, she's stronger than ever! Experienced. An insider. And, she's got reason to dislike the Bush Family.

Maybe, this has something to do with settling the score.

And, we get to win. (Plus, women vote. And, we're no longer cowed by the swaggering idiots passing themselves off as cowboys. Big hats. Little cattle prods.) Wait till ya hear the women ROAR.

Of course, this is written by a woman.

Posted by: Carol in California at September 20, 2003 10:24 PM | PERMALINK

1)I agree--it's a silly story.

2)I would have to say that about 99.99% of this is coming from the right. Fox News is absolutely obsessed with this non-issue. I may be missing something, but I don't think it's much of a topic for those on the left. (Sort of like Barabra Streisand's politics--so far as I can tell, the only people who gives a shit what she has to say about anything are wingnuts sick of using the word "Clinton"...)

Posted by: Scott at September 20, 2003 10:43 PM | PERMALINK

Kieran Healy and Trout:
that is a good comment. My personal view:
Kevin does approach each post as if he has not written anything before. While it does make for quite a few 'unpredictable' posts (some bloggers slip into character before posting and it is evident in the stream of posts) which are interesting reads, every now and then he comes up with a cropper like this one which ignores pretty much everything he has been doing for a while. I don't mind the latter because it is usually innocuous stuff.

Posted by: Sam Jackson at September 20, 2003 11:36 PM | PERMALINK

Um, very quietly, relatively speaking, Hillary is proving herself a damn good senator. First off, she is proving more likeable than Al D'Amato. (Go figure. Axe murderering child monkey rapists don't have this problem.) More to the point, she shows up, a lot. She has worked very hard to be visible upstate, and has convinced even some of our local lunatics that she is for real. She's done the homework.

She is very good, live. I have all sorts of policy problems with her, myself, but let's none of us kid ourselves: one year, not this year, but one year, Hillary will run, and she will be our party's candidate. Watch her act live if you disbelieve me.

Posted by: Thersites at September 20, 2003 11:44 PM | PERMALINK

Losing VP candidates who became President:

John Tyler (losing Southern Whig VP candidate in 1836)- although not elected president.

more notably...
Franklin D. Roosevelt (1920 Dem VP candidate).

Posted by: John at September 21, 2003 12:15 AM | PERMALINK

John, good history lesson, but I think the point was that losing as a VP candidate was not a good setup for winning the very NEXT election.

Which Joe L is proving. Even though he won the last one.

Posted by: Bruce Webb at September 21, 2003 12:53 AM | PERMALINK

Good on you, John. To have forgotten the Happy Warrior. Sorry. Shows what I know.

Posted by: bad Jim at September 21, 2003 01:10 AM | PERMALINK

Hillary has about as much chance of becoming president as Lieberman.


Posted by: raj at September 21, 2003 02:07 AM | PERMALINK

I think that "endless stream of of Hillary conjecturing from both left and right" is an expression of "hard pundit law" (as Bob Somerby puts it) which takes it as self-evident that 1) the Clintons are pathologically self-centered, above and beyond any other politician, and 2) that every apparently trivial or innocuous Clinton action is part of the larger plot to return to power.

Posted by: Jeffrey Kramer at September 21, 2003 02:56 AM | PERMALINK

I think right-wing politicians concentrate on her because she's an established bogeyman, and they don't have to do the groundwork to get contributions coming in. I think the punderati do it because they've written obituaries for both the Clintons so many times that their continued survival seems somehow unnatural.

The Clintons have been written off by the people who presume to speak for us, and we've failed to follow along. Either they're out of touch or the Clintons have some evil power to upset the natural order of things.

Hillary's an unusually effective freshman senator, and her constituents like her. She's doing her job. and she's doing it by working with the same senators who send out fundraising letters using her name as the bogeyman.

If the hard right can get all this free help from Washington Observers, they'd be fools to turn it down.

Posted by: julia at September 21, 2003 03:56 AM | PERMALINK

I love Hillary. I would be proud to have her as our president. She would do as good a job as any Bush or Dean or Clark. I, for one, think she would do a better job.

Posted by: Hanna at September 21, 2003 04:02 AM | PERMALINK

While Hilary is certainly very competent and well-respected by many, I agree that she could never be elected President or VP. Her bogeyman status might fade somewhat over time, but her cold, businesslike personal style will never win her enough swing voters to overcome the right-wing Clinton-hating faction of the electorate. We are now governed by these middle-of-the-road "swingers," so we have to judge a candidate's electability largely on how someone might vote when they make the decision IN THE VOTING BOOTH! Sad but true.

Posted by: jsaro at September 21, 2003 04:22 AM | PERMALINK

I think you're missing the automatic support of otherwise disinterested women. Talk to a few and you may see it.

Posted by: hqplink at September 21, 2003 04:37 AM | PERMALINK

I'm ambivalent about Hillary myself, but in talking politics with the guy fitting shoes on my little girls feet the other day he VOLUNTEERED that he would prefer to vote for Hillary over the other democratic candidates. I nearly fell out of my seat. Ok, I live in MA. but I don't think of that staid town and even staider shoe store as a Democratic stronghold. She'd be a wild card and there is no telling how the right's non stop demonizing might ultimately help her with people whojust don't pay attention to anything but newcoverage (that is, every knock's a boost."

Posted by: aimai at September 21, 2003 05:30 AM | PERMALINK

Hillary makes for headlines, and helps right-wing stations with their ratings, and right-wingers with their fundraising.

She'll never get elected president.

Posted by: Paleo at September 21, 2003 06:25 AM | PERMALINK

My parents are pretty solid Republicans, but occassionally they break ranks. AND they're pro-choice. Still, they hate Hillary with the fire of a thousand suns. I don't get it at all. They even voted for Mikulski once, so it's not just assertive women. They just think she married Bill just to be first-lady and that she's a power hungry obsessive witch. I often point out that there was no way of knowing Bill would someday be president when she married him, but my mom claims, "She Knew". I don't think Hillary can win because of this stuff. My parents rarely donate any money to campaigns, but I bet they would give heavily to beat Hillary.

Posted by: MDtoMN at September 21, 2003 06:53 AM | PERMALINK

I agree with comments by other bloggers that Bill has been fueling this speculation simply because it drives the wingers nuts. The more time they spend smearing Hillary, the less time they have for other mischief and disinformation.

Like Ted, Hillary has become "flypaper." Let the right focus their energies on her, while we work on converting a few more red states back to the blue side of the ledger.

Posted by: Mark Gisleson at September 21, 2003 07:34 AM | PERMALINK

There's a guy in my town in upstate NY who drives a pickup truck with a bumper sticker that says,
"Stop Hillary." Apparently he thinks she is some sort of movement, a one-woman jihad who is about to impose her agenda on the nation. I'm waiting for an opportunity to engage him and learn more about his anxieties. Maybe I can catch up with this guy at the gas pump or someplace and say,
"Yeah, that Hillary sure is a bitch, ain't she?"
It'll be interesting to see where that leads...

Posted by: peter jung at September 21, 2003 07:35 AM | PERMALINK

I agree with the people above who say (1) the right wing has thrown everything they have at Hillary for twelve years, and she's still standing, and (2) Hillary as a candidate will energize women who may not be all that interested in voting right now. The tough-as-Thatcher point is valid too. I would add that she is a true centrist, but her treatment at the hands of the right wing smear machine makes her a hero to leftists anyway. She can unite the Democratic Party and appeal to those critical suburban mom swing voters. If right wing hate could do her in her career would already be over, and the right wing is going to raise tons of money Hillary or no Hillary. So I believe there is a better than even chance she will be our first female President.

Posted by: Luis at September 21, 2003 07:41 AM | PERMALINK

I think Kevin hits the nail on the head by noting Hillary's divisiveness. I like Hillary. She's got more integrity than any of her critics. The problem with her even running for president is that--for reasons I still don't understand--the right HATES her. And so, a Hillary presidency would make for a pretty unstable electorate, and probably a re-birth of right-wing radio. On the otherhand, maybe what this nation needs is a full-scale revolution in the streets.

Posted by: Hood at September 21, 2003 07:55 AM | PERMALINK

Why do MEN persist in insulting women. B---- is not a pleasing term. Kevin Drum please please do not use it again! Senator Clinton can be liked or disliked with intensity, but should not be dispised b ecause she is a WOMAN. Think Kevin!!!

Posted by: lise at September 21, 2003 08:15 AM | PERMALINK

We are deeply grateful that Hillary Clinton is part of the senate and doing such a splendid job in the midst of a radical right Republican effort to destroy the New Deal legacy that anchored America's middle class. We would support Senator Clinton for any office. We will support any Democrat who battles these destructive radical Republican policies.

Posted by: Ari at September 21, 2003 08:28 AM | PERMALINK

The Hillary-hatred goes back at least to the 1992 campaign. Remember this joke that was current then:

The Clinton's and the Gore's are on their campaign bus trip. Driving through Illinois, the campaign buses stop at a gas station, and the Clintons and the Gores get out to stretch. The gas station attendant comes out to help (editorial comment by CRL -- you can tell it's a joke from that), Hillary sees him and says "Sam!". "Hillary!", the gas-station attendant replies, and they talk for a while. Later, back on the bus, Bill asks Hillary who the gas-station attendant was. Hillary replies that he was a guy who went to her high-school in Illinois and that they dated for a while. "Well", says Bill, "just think: If you'd married Sam, you'd be the wife of a gas-station attendant, but because you married me, you're the wife of a guy who's running for President." "Bill", Hillary replies, "if I married Sam, I'd still be the wife of a guy who was running for President!"

Posted by: Civil-Rights Lawyer at September 21, 2003 08:38 AM | PERMALINK

I think a lot of people project their dreams onto her because she is perhaps the first "plausible" Democrat woman who could be President.

I don't think she has wide enough appeal. The Ted Kennedy analogy is apt. Personally, she annoys me. She is not good at giving speeches.

Just wait, there will be other women who can do it. Granholm is a preview of what to look for. Then we can forget the fantasizing.

Posted by: bc at September 21, 2003 08:45 AM | PERMALINK

Californians should not be trusted. They first elect a B-grade actor as Governor and send him
to the White House only to get a senile man in return. They make and break in the 90s
only to see 9/11 at NY. They cause powercuts, budgetcuts, encourage Ahnolds, Mickeys and Strippers to run for Governor.

If they are allowed to continue on this trend rest of USA will be pricking pregnant chads, loose franchise for ever.

God, make a level7 Equake and sink CA to sea
We might strike Oil there and have full employment for all in USA by next National Elections.

Posted by: Winner Column @ at September 21, 2003 08:55 AM | PERMALINK

Puce is getting wordier, I see.

Posted by: Laertes at September 21, 2003 09:15 AM | PERMALINK

When I hear people disregard Hillary because she's been a target of a lot of right-wing mud slinging (for reasons I think I have already been well-expressed) all I can think is how familiar this tune is - I heard it over and over during Hillary's senate campaign.

I say, don't underestimate her. She won in several rural counties in Upstate New York that are politically much closer to Alabama than Manhattan. If you examine her record and performance in New York, it commands a lot of respect for her as a politician, even if you disagree with some of what she has voted on and worked for. And she still means a lot to a lot of professional women everywhere, who are a large part of the electorate.

Posted by: Matilde at September 21, 2003 09:51 AM | PERMALINK

Listening to Safire today on Meet The Press, you'd think there is a vast Bill/Hillary/Left Wing conspiracy out there. It's hilarious.

I agree with some comments in here that Hillary could profit from being a senator for a while longer. She needs to gather more credentials, especially foreign policy credentials, before she gets in front of the republican mudslinging squad and assorted punditry.

As long as there aren't any scandals as senator, she does have a good chance. I hope that the American people will have an open mind and listen to her as a candidate, instead of relying on their preconceived notions.

Posted by: Xavier at September 21, 2003 09:51 AM | PERMALINK

How about this: she won in New York. In addition, while this is slightly unscientific, both my Mother who is 80 and a life long republican and my neice who is 24 and a moderate republican were thrilled when she won the senate seat in NY.

Anybody who thinks that mere divisiveness should be a disqualifier has little understanding of the history of electorial politics in the US. Just a hint: Lincoln, Jackson, FDR.

Posted by: Ron at September 21, 2003 10:10 AM | PERMALINK

Amen Kevin. In terms of political subjects, I can't think of any other fire that produces so much smoke as HC. My guess is both sides have created a false idol here.

Posted by: Waffle at September 21, 2003 10:11 AM | PERMALINK

Her biggest problem, IMHO, is demonstrated on this thread. She'd have a bigger "not electable" problem than Howard Dean does. A good chunk of the democratic base would go instantly into "anyone but Hilary" mode. It's just as irrational a response as the VRWC's hatred, but there it is.

Posted by: flory at September 21, 2003 10:15 AM | PERMALINK

Jeffrey Kramer's two points are dead on.

Remember the Republican denigration of Clinton's efforts to broker an Israeli-Palestinian deal? Remember the media/press going after him for doing it because he was "only trying to help his legacy" in the aftermath of the impeachment? Remember how neither the Republicans nor their servants in the media/press considered that promoting peace in Israel and Palestine might be a good idea no matter who was doing it or why?

On Hillary again, during her senate campaign, I got a fund-raising letter from her opponent. (I am a life-long Democrat who lives in Los Angeles and never lived in New York state.) The letter said that he could explain why I should send him money in seven words: "I am running against Hillary Rodham Clinton!" That this worked, or that something in their polling made them think this would work (even with out of state Democrats), is what Hillary would be running against.

Posted by: James E. Powell at September 21, 2003 10:30 AM | PERMALINK

Hillary is a walking disaster. She'd clinch the nomination and lose the general in a heartbeat. She IS a wildly divisive figure, being loathed by the right - and not just by the radical right but by otherwise sensible moderate conservatives - and she's distrusted by a good deal orf independents. Yes, a lot of people bought her book, but even more bought Michael Moore's book, and as much as I like the guy, I'd never say he could win so much as a major mayoral race without a major fight.

There's something about the Clintons that does reek of opportunism, of the desire to put oneself ahead of one's party. We all know that nearly every politician has this to some extent, but with the Clintons it's always felt a little more obvious, a little more naked. A lot of liberals (myself included) blame the Clinton-DLC crowd for the Dems' current spinelessness, their lack of a message that differentiates themselves from the Republicans. If the Clintons have their way, the Democrats will forever be the party of the Clintonites. This is a recipe for failure, and the Right senses it: why else do all the "Hillary in '04?" stories keep coming from the NY Post, the Drudge Report, from Fox News? They don't want this story to die. As long as Hillary is out there, the Devil is alive, and the Democrats are the party of evil.

She's not good for the party or the country. Keep her as a senator and Bill as a fundraiser and for god's sake - let the Democrats get out of their shadow.

Posted by: Munster Truck at September 21, 2003 10:39 AM | PERMALINK

That's why Bush must be defeated next year, or we will wander the wilderness until '12 at least.

Dream on.

I'm not saying that Bush is unbeatable, but the current crop of candidates is just ludicrous. Hilary does no better than the rest of them in polls either.

Posted by: Gary Utter at September 21, 2003 11:34 AM | PERMALINK

I think part of the reason that Democrats like Hillary is that the right hates her so much.


Posted by: Kynn at September 21, 2003 11:36 AM | PERMALINK

I agree with comments by other bloggers that Bill has been fueling this speculation simply because it drives the wingers nuts. The more time they spend smearing Hillary, the less time they have for other mischief and disinformation.

So this false Clinton conspiracy theory is the product of a real Clinton conspiracy?


Posted by: Nick at September 21, 2003 11:49 AM | PERMALINK

Sorry, but Hillary Clinton has as much chance of being elected as Dan Quayle or Newt Gingrich. All can poll 43% but their negatives poll at 47%. The only way these people can win is if a third party candidate takes away some of their negatives, the other party runs a really bad candidate, or they run against each other.

On top of that, the Clintons have the habit of destorying their friends while they ride off in the sunset. There is a small but significant part of the Democrat party that would like the Clinton cabal to leave the stage.

Posted by: JG at September 21, 2003 12:38 PM | PERMALINK

JG's second comment is one of the persistent myths about the Clintons. If the Clintons "have the habit of destroying their friends" one would expect that there is a rather lengthy list of destroyed friends, given the length of the Clintons' respective political careers. So, how come I can't think of even one friend that the Clintons destroyed?

Posted by: James E. Powell at September 21, 2003 12:48 PM | PERMALINK

Hillary Fathered My Alien Baby.

Posted by: John Isbell at September 21, 2003 01:12 PM | PERMALINK

So, how come I can't think of even one friend that the Clintons destroyed?

I think it's more that they abandon their friends when they become political liabilities. Think Webster Hubbell and Lani Guinier.

That said, I'd still vote for her in a heartbeat. And what a pleasure it would be to watch the wingnuts froth if she won.

Posted by: Basharov at September 21, 2003 01:42 PM | PERMALINK

i am fascinated at the number of commentors who think that Clinton needs more experience, especially in foreign policy. Compared to whom? Commander Codpiece? One-term governor of a weak-governor state? Never been outside the country? Who doesn't know any foreign officials' names unless they are on his teleprompter?


Posted by: Mellifluous at September 21, 2003 02:35 PM | PERMALINK

Hubbell was indicted. Guinier was dropped by the Senate Dems who would not vote to confirm her.(Dems apparently believed standing up for civil rights would cost them votes. They were probably right.) Neither of these two "destroyed" by the Clintons. Were they "abandoned" by the Clintons? That's a pretty hard judgment. What would any other politician do? When you become a liability to your patron, you walk. If you don't know that going in, you shouldn't be in politics.

Posted by: James E. Powell at September 21, 2003 02:47 PM | PERMALINK

Mrs. Clinton is a screen on to which the far right (and much of the mainstream right) have projected their misogynistic anger.

Indeed, that's why we hated Maggie so much, and why Jennifer Dunn is a distant memory rather than rising to Republican leadership in the House. And no one on the right has ever fantasized about Condi Rice for VP in '08, either!

Posted by: Kirk Parker at September 21, 2003 02:52 PM | PERMALINK

From outside the USA, it looks very strange. I admit I loathe Mr. Bush, but it wouldn't dawn on me to hate Laura.

I despised Brian Mulroney with a consuming passion, but I didn't hate his kids.

Frankly, I think it's sick. My apologies to those who have noted that their mothers fall into that category, but if the bizarre psychosis fits. . .

Posted by: Finny at September 21, 2003 02:58 PM | PERMALINK

Bush had been outside the country before he was elected.

Posted by: SamAm at September 21, 2003 03:51 PM | PERMALINK

Divisive figures can win elections, just not against sunny-optimistic and popular opponents in a normal election cycle. Nixon was certainly a " divisive " figure, so was Bill Clinton by 1996 but both were favored by running in three way races. Given the right conditions a candidate as smart and experienced as Hillary can win the presidency ( she can have the nomination easily)despite a good third of the electorate hating her guts. Her biggest decision is picking the right moment ( '04 or '08) because if she runs and blows it her time probably will not come again.

I don't like Hillary much either as a person or politically but undersetimating her ( and Bill's) willingness to sacrifice for a political prize is stupid and contrary to the historical record.

Posted by: mark safranski at September 21, 2003 06:35 PM | PERMALINK

Granholm will never be a presidential nominee. She was born in Canada and is constitutionally ineligible for the office.

Posted by: NedRock at September 21, 2003 08:05 PM | PERMALINK

Hillary enjoys the highest ratings of any Democrat for the same reason that Lieberman led in the polling for so long: name recognition. Hers is near 100%. Yes, she can get 40%, which no other Democrat can get, but that 40% is all she will get. I like her, I admire her, I think she could be president (although she seems to lack her husband's easy informality, charisma, and keen political ear). But she will never win. There are a lot of fine politicians who would make good presidents, but just can't win for one reason or another.

Posted by: NedRock at September 21, 2003 08:08 PM | PERMALINK

I have long felt that if Hillary wants to be president, now is her best shot. She would be a stong favorite to win the nomination, and, with so many things that can go wrong for Bush, could actually be a near sho-in. Of course, the opposite is true and she could have little chance.

The longer she waits, especially if it must be 2012, the chances just have to diminish.

And I would not fear the right wing's irrational hatred of Hillary. That would be a plus just as the left wing's irrational hatred of Bush and the irrational opposition to the Iraqi war helped Bush politically.

Posted by: tallan at September 21, 2003 08:52 PM | PERMALINK

Wow! The one most amazing thing in the comments is the widespread belief in misogyny as a primary factor on the right. Of course, I suspect most Leftists believe that the right is primarily racist, too. I don't believe that the Left has a good chance of consistently beating the right - of changing the direction the country is heading in - until and unless the Left takes a good look at and truly understands the right.

That said, the primary reasons most on the right seem to actually dislike Hillary are:
1. She appears to have the same tendency as her husband to manipulate every situation to her personal advantage, regardless of cost and consequence to country, family, friends, party or any other person or group.
2. She appears to be opposed to the foundational characteristics of the US: free markets, equal protection, equality of opportunity, individual self-determination and personal responsibility, and so on.
3. She appears to have a deep disrespect for the military, and that is anathema to the vast majority of the right (excluding the extreme isolationist wingnuts (Buchanan, etc) and extreme isolationist libertarians).
4. Her willingness to stay with her husband despite an obvious inability or unwillingness to be faithful, an apparent tendency to lie to her, and other forms of power-over abuse, rub raw the sensibilities of the family-oriented among the right, who mostly see marriage in terms of responsibility to the family unit, rather than an opportunistic arrangement.
5. She appears to have lied as egregiously as her husband, and as often, and with as little cause. This calls her character into question, and it is mostly on character that the right votes for national office (even over positions on specific issues, in many cases).
6. Her position on issues of interest to the right (national defense, fiscal responsibility, low taxes, no nanny state, gun control, private health care, small government and so on) are diametrically opposed to the positions taken by most on the right.

So you can demonize the right as much as you like, but if you do not begin to see the rational reasons for the behavior on the right, you will have a few problems: inability to win majorities in Congress; most often failing to win or to hold the White House; inability to work with your political opponents to accomplish your goals (bomb-throwing, while possibly satisfying, does not help to bring positions your way). As a consequence, expect the Leftist policy preferences to get less and less likely to be implemented into law, unless you are willing (in fact, unless the Left as a whole is willing) to undergo some honest evaluation of yourselves and of the right.

Posted by: Jeff Medcalf at September 21, 2003 09:14 PM | PERMALINK

Jeff, I really do think it's misogyny. As soon as Hillary appeared on the scene, the right hated her. In 1992, they didn't know anything about her. All the scandals came later.

In 1992, Whitewater was just a housing development in Arkansas. Monica Lewinsky was still in high school. Ken Starr was still a judge. Gays in the military were still in the closet. Marc Rich was still in Switzerland.

In 1992, all anyone knew about Hillary was that she is a strong, independent woman. That was all the right needed to know; they hated her with a passion.

Also, where do you get your information on Hillary's views? Contempt for the military? What has Hillary ever said about the military? Personally, I suspect that she may have looked on it with disdain at one point, but I don't *know* that. Neither do you. Opposition to free-market capitalism? What? Where did that come from?

Bill Clinton was a sleazebag who disgraced the Presidency. If you want to cast aspersions on his character, that's fine. But you've got to acknowledge that Hillary is not Bill. He's the one who has told all the lies and placed his ambition above all else. You can't really say that about Hillary.

Also, it's more than a little ironic that the right is damning Hillary for *not* getting a divorce. I don't know what makes that marriage tick, either, but who is to say that she doesn't just love him? Also, I bet that if we were to look into Hillary's past, we'd find that her dad cheated on her mom.

Agree that Hillary would be a divisive candidate. But if the Repubs put up someone weak -- or if they put up Jeb -- she might have a real shot.

Posted by: Joe Schmoe at September 21, 2003 10:09 PM | PERMALINK

Jeff Medcalf's list of the Hillary Horrors contains, so far as I can tell, about seventeen items which are simply unsubstantiated recyclings of generic anti-Hillary trashtalk, and just two items which are clearly factual: 1) she is still married to an unfaithful husband and 2) she does not take the conservative position on issues like taxes, gun control and health care. Item #2 applies equally to every prominent Democrat, and I'm looking forward to seeing Jeff's thinking on item #1 incorporated in the next Republican Party Platform. ("We hereby call on all wives who understand the centrality of the principle of the sanctity of the institution of marriage to divorce their cheating husbands at the earliest possible opportunity.")

Posted by: Jeffrey Kramer at September 21, 2003 10:25 PM | PERMALINK

The only reason there's all this Hillary talk is that it's cheap buzz for media parasites who can't figure out anything more interesting to rattle about but have to meet a deadline.

Posted by: SqueakyRat at September 21, 2003 11:23 PM | PERMALINK

Long ago Matt W asked

Can anyone list the specific things Republicans cite that make Hillary so bad?

Jeff Metcalf made a stab at an answer, but let me throw in my 2 cents.
1. Her health care plan. And yes, to me just that health care plan was enough all by itself.
2. The Rose Law firm records found in the next room just after the statute of limitations was up.

And I am serving notice now that I will not get into any mud-slinging here. You asked, I answered.

Posted by: Ron at September 22, 2003 06:13 AM | PERMALINK

I'm tellin' ya; we breed Chelsea with a Kennedy scion and we'll produce a being whose very presence drives Republicans into paroxisms of self-righteous fury so violent that their withered hearts will explode.

Posted by: Harry Tuttle at September 22, 2003 07:09 AM | PERMALINK

"The Rose Law firm records found in the next room just after the statute of limitations was up."

That's a new one to me, Ron. Statute of limitations on what? Records indicating guilt how?

Posted by: Jeffrey Kramer at September 22, 2003 08:32 AM | PERMALINK

I do not consider this worth a whole lot of time (being the devisive issue it is), and my memory (usually rock-solid) may have slipped a cog on the statute of limitations thing, but I will provide the first thing I found on Google

I did not introduce her guilt or innocence, only sitting on evidence.

Posted by: Ron at September 22, 2003 08:53 AM | PERMALINK

Well, the conclusion that she was "sitting on evidence" -- rather than (as she claimed) being unable to find the evidence -- only makes sense if you assume that evidence had some tendency to implicate her, or somebody she wanted to protect, in some wrongdoing.

The URL you provided didn't mention the statute of limitations, but another source did: see

Here's the key exchange:
"SEN. ROBERT BENNETT: ...The timing of the discovery is particularly suspect. On December 31st, the statute of limitations expired for civil suits that could have been brought under the Madison Guaranty case....
"ANN LEWIS: ...The Rose Law Firm has entered into what lawyers call a tolling agreement, meaning they have agreed to keep open the time by which the Resolution Trust Corporation, if it chose to go back in on this issue, could do so, so that is simply specious...."

I'm not at all sure I follow this, but it appears Lewis is saying the Rose had already waved any claims to immunity from expiration of the statute of limitations, so nothing would have been gained by delaying disclosure until the original statute had expired. Bennett did not respond to Lewis on this point, nor did any other panelist bring it up.

Even if I'm wrong about what Lewis was saying (or Lewis is wrong about what happened), the production of the billing records after the expiration of the statute of limitations only should raise suspicion -- again -- if the content of the billing records could have spurred a civil suit against the Rose Law Firm on grounds which did not already exist. I can't see how this could happen. All the records appear to show is which individuals from Madison Guaranty were interviewed by Hillary Clinton, and when. What kind of a lawsuit could have been filed against Rose, but wasn't, because -- though it was known that somebody at the firm must have talked to Mr. Doe sometime -- it wasn't known until the records were produced that it was Hillary who talked to Mr. Doe on May 18 at 2:30 PM? (In the drawing room, with a candlestick?)

Posted by: Jeffrey Kramer at September 22, 2003 09:39 AM | PERMALINK

I will post one more time on this. Whether she was implicated or not, guilty or not, protecting somebody else or not, or anything: she sat on evidence.

I think that whether or not the subpoenaed records were incriminating to anybody, they were subpoenaed for some reason, and "suddenly" finding them right after the statute of limitations runs out (glad my memory held up on that one) raises questions in my mind. Questions that will probably never be answered to my satisfaction.

Posted by: Ron at September 22, 2003 10:48 AM | PERMALINK

A significant fraction of American's think that Hillary is a conniving liar, a crook, and an extreme ideologue. And those are her good points. An near majority simply don't like her. Whatever you may think of her doesn't change that. And I have no desire to reshash the Clintons, but lets leave it at the fact that people have looked at the evidence and made up their own minds (whether you agree or not). Please don't chalk it up to irrationality or bigotry on the part of those who don't agree with you. People look at the same set of facts and come to different conclusions all the time (kind of like OJ's jury and most of America).

Consider Dr. DeLong's opinion:
"My two cents' worth--and I think it is the two cents' worth of everybody who worked for the Clinton Administration health care reform effort of 1993-1994--is that Hillary Rodham Clinton needs to be kept very far away from the White House for the rest of her life. Heading up health-care reform was the only major administrative job she has ever tried to do. And she was a complete flop at it. She had neither the grasp of policy substance, the managerial skills, nor the political smarts to do the job she was then given. And she wasn't smart enough to realize that she was in over her head and had to get out of the Health Care Czar role quickly."

Is he a member of the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy? Or is he someone who wants to see what he considers sound policies to be carried out.

One of the problems in making an honest judgment about a politician is that we consider them to be avatars of their positions - thus despite clear evidence to the contrary, we think that someone who proclaims "good" policies can't do wrong, and conversely that a politician's personal faults somehow discredit their policies.

Posted by: Kevin Murphy at September 22, 2003 10:59 AM | PERMALINK

Yup. I hadn't even been thinking about the 2004 race, until a few weeks ago, when Matt Drudge, on his radio show made two separate observations.

ONE: He said this Bush doesn't even look like he enjoys being president. And, it seems he doesn't even want to run again. There's just no explaining his waffling, and indecisions any other way.

TWO: Hillary, even though she said she wasn't running; had until October to announce. And, then Drudge said you could learn from history. Because, Hillary's husband, Bill, who having high negatives to overcome, decided to race against this Bush's dad, in 1992, BY ANNOUNCING IN OCTOBER. (So, Drudge pointed to the window. And, when he did, I saw it.)

Hillary Clinton will be on the ticket. My guess, depending on Wesley Clark's positioning strength in 2004. Hillary is a marvelous candidate.

And, Bush? He can't keep Cheney. So my guess is that Karl Rove will go with Condi Rice as Bush's veep choice.

There's something about republicans and blacks. They pick them for marquee value, but does it bring in black voters? Would it split the females? Nah.

You don't know females.

Hillary's gettting significant coverage because it really in the possibilties. Put her in the race, and it's suddenly a viable race for 2004.

That's not a very good sign for Bush. Once in office, the president gets the favored post position. (But given how Bush's eyes don't coordinate when he talks to the public, one can only wonder what he will make of those post beams as he heads around the track, again. Less happy than ever.) You think the CIA will do a meany in-between?

Posted by: Carol in California at September 22, 2003 11:16 AM | PERMALINK

I am suspicious of anyone who writes a law containing over 230 points at which my doctor can be sent to jail for treating me--as Hillary's nationalized healthcare law did.

I am wary of the idea of hey-presto I'm your "Co-president."

I worry about the mentality that hires a staffer who says, regarding the presidential executive order, "Stroke of the pen. law of the land...pretty cool." (Paul Begala)

And, yes, this attitude toward the power of government is the SAME one that thinks that the clearly unconstitutional parts of the Patriot act are just fine, and McCain-Feingold doesn't limit free speech.

Stop. Them. All.'s a very flavorful overview of quotes about Hillary. The one from Maureen Dowd is a peach.

Posted by: Stephen at September 22, 2003 12:30 PM | PERMALINK
From outside the USA, it looks very strange. I admit I loathe Mr. Bush, but it wouldn't dawn on me to hate Laura.
Me neither, but that's because Laura was never billed as a "co-president" or part of Bush's policy team.


You don't know females.
How utterly condescending. Do you really suggest that biology is destiny, that one's gender determines one's vote? OK, but in the real world, you should note that the "gender gap" was a lot smaller last time. Or heck, don't note it--the less y'all on the left pay attention to what is really happening, the easier time we'll have. :-) Posted by: Kirk Parker at September 22, 2003 01:40 PM | PERMALINK

Well, as a center-right, here are the three reasons I'm not particularly disposed towards Senator Clinton:

1. Policy. Well, duh.

2. Health care. I think all the points have been adequately covered above.

3. The "vast right-wing conspiracy". With the evidence she had about her husband's character? The only explanation that makes sense to me: she was using her marital crisis to score political points. Anyone who can do that scares me, whatever party they hail from.

That said, I don't hate her. I'd be likely to vote for her over any of the current Democratic crop, with the possible exception of Lieberman.

(Then again, the first time I was eligible to vote, I was disappointed because Illinois Senator Paul Simon had retired, and I wouldn't be able to vote for him. What does that tell you about my rightist credentials?)

Posted by: Jeff Licquia at September 22, 2003 02:04 PM | PERMALINK

Can't really say I'm a Republican or a Democrat, since I don't live in your nation, but if I had to choose, I'd fall on the conservative side of the scales.

It's a little disingenuous to say that people dislike Hillary because they're less evolved and they are racist, knuckle-dragging trgolodytes. There's a very sound reason to dislike Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, and its name is William Jefferson Clinton.

No, she is not guilty of Bill's sins. But I have to ask myself why she is bothering to stick around with a man who is a serial adulterer and plainly pays only lip service to the idea of respecting women.

How is it that she gets painted as a strong, successful woman when she's looked the other way countless times as her husband's run off with the floozy-du-jour. Yes, she's a lawyer, and we may say she is even an above-average, competent one. Yes, she does seem to be a strong individual on the outside.

But how does one reconcile the notion of a strong and successful lady hanging out with a relative loser like Bill? If one of our friends dated someone as regularly unfaithful as Bill we'd all be begging said friend to ditch the guy for someone a lot more responsible.

I'm seeing a smart, successful woman waste her time and energy with a serial philanderer. Essentially she's being an enabler, not calling him to really account for his actions and live up to his vows. And I wonder why. No woman I've ever encountered would put up with multiple instances of infidelity on that scale, and certainly not if it was the talk of the entire nation for the better part of a year.

From my small-c conservative viewpoint, yes I disagree with her views on socialized medicine and foreign policy and a host of other issues. But that's not why I dislike her. I dislike her because she *didn't* play the strong woman and *didn't* kick Bill in the pants and call the whole marriage off. I have the sneaking suspicion that just as she failed to make Bill pay the penalty for his multiple instances of infidelity, she'll look the other way when some nation kills American citizens or harms American interests.

It's not that conservative brains don't function well, or we're indoctrinated into the Vast Right-Wing Cult of Clinton-Hating at birth. Personally, I just don't like the idea of a President who isn't willing to make someone live up to the consequences of their actions.

Posted by: Chris Taylor at September 22, 2003 03:23 PM | PERMALINK

Last words for Ron, then:

1) You can only state "she sat on [the records]" as a fact if you know for a fact that she wasn't telling the truth when she said she didn't know what happened to the records. You don't know that for a fact. Things do get lost. It may be reasonable to have suspicions, but:
2) Suspicions about the "convenience" of the timing are reasonable in direct proportion to how much good the timing of the release did her. So far there is nothing I have seen which indicates that it mattered at all when the billing records were released, for reasons already discussed.

Posted by: Jeffrey Kramer at September 23, 2003 03:02 AM | PERMALINK

You are right. Hilliary is the spawn of Satan and a conniving and devious bit$h.

Posted by: Ruth Lindemann at September 23, 2003 06:51 AM | PERMALINK

It seems like you dislike Hillary because she is more New Testament (forgive) instead of Old Testament (punish)?

Are you looking for a God-like president?

Posted by: Tripp at September 23, 2003 07:48 AM | PERMALINK


It is reasonable to want perseverance and dependability in a leader, whether that leader commands a nation or the local Boy Scout troop. I might be wrong but I don't think those qualities are limited to deities alone.

As for Old vs. New Testament, that's a question better put to your local pastor or priest than me. I'm not a scholar in these things, but as I understand it, the Old Testament does not rule out the possibility of forgiveness, nor does the New Testament rule out any possibility of suffering consequences of one's bad actions.

My specific beef with Hillary is that she does not act like a strong woman. She acts like an abused wife who is too cowed and afraid to take strong action. I suppose I didn't make that clear enough in my original post.

You may choose to call Hillary's course of action mercy, and if Hillary had denounced Bill's disgraceful conduct and yet decided to work on the marriage anwyay, I might be inclined to call it mercy too. Denying that a demonstrable and repeated problem exists, or characterizing it as an unfixable artifact of a rough childhood, is not mercy. It's just denial. It doesn't motivate the offender to try and find a way out of his predicament. It papers over the problem and pretends it doesn't exist.

Recognizing the full scope of the offense, acknowledging it and its hurts, and choosing to love in spite of them anyway -- that's mercy. That's the kind of love that says "Your actions have hurt me deeply -- and you need to know that they did. But I forgive you, and love you anyway". When we see Hillary concoct claims of a Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy, that's not merciful love at work. That is denial; the kind of shallow infatuation that says "You couldn't have done this, because that would mean you don't value me as much as you say you do. So the problem must lie elsewhere." That sort of attitude makes me question whether Hillary's capable of realistically assessing serious problems. It seems to me like she'd rather accept a gossamer fantasy than face a serious problem and try to find a serious solution.

This conservative doesn't hate Hillary. I just don't trust her decision-making abilities, and I do not think she has the fortitude required to lead the country through a long and bitter fight with terrorism. She already had a long and serious fight ahead -- getting her husband to live up to his vows -- and instead of making him acconutable for his own commitments, she pretended the problem lay elsewhere. That doesn't inspire my confidence.

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