THE BIG stop Hillary story recently was just in TIME magazine. Larry Sabato of Virginia, who tilts Republican, had a piece titled “Hillary’s No Slam Dunk in 2016,” which pushed that [gasp!] “Why she’s more vulnerable than anyone thinks.” His summation: nobody is handed the White House. Got it; good to know. Today, it’s the Atlantic with “Can Anyone Stop Hillary? Absolutely.”
The Atlantic goes on to tout this proof: The former secretary of state may still be the frontrunner for the Democratic nomination, but she hasn’t done much to help her cause lately. In fact, Hillary Clinton hasn’t done anything either way to “help her cause lately.” She’s been so far out of the scene that the national and new media has had to conjure up fictitious story lines in order to write about her.
The Atlantic also does something that was all the rage in 2008. Feature an unflattering picture of then Secretary Clinton giving testimony in the Benghazi hearing, captured in a moment that she said “What difference does it make now?” They then take off on Benghazi, which I’m sure delights Republicans.
But if you look closely at the kind of year Clinton had in 2013, isn’t it more reasonable to say that although she remains the frontrunner to lead the Democrats in 2016, she hasn’t done much lately to advance her cause? Indeed, a few potential vulnerabilities have come into sharper focus that should cause Democrats to ease up on their embrace of Hillary.
Hailed as a tireless diplomat who helped restore the U.S. image in foreign capitals when she stepped down as secretary of state, Clinton’s tenure at Foggy Bottom now looks less glowing.
Last year, the State Department review board on the 2012 terrorist assault on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi determined that Clinton was not responsible for lax security at the outpost. Still, this issue doesn’t look like it’s going away for her.
Just last week, the Senate Intelligence Committee released a bipartisan report that found that the attack, which claimed the lives of four Americans including Ambassador Christopher Stevens, was preventable and primarily blamed the State Department for failing to heed intelligence warnings about unrest in Benghazi and not beefing up security at its compound there. In a separate addendum, Republicans on the committee asserted that Clinton was ultimately accountable for the inadequate security.
If that isn’t bad enough, the author of the Atlantic piece, James A. Barnes, digs up Al Hunt’s column on Clinton. Digging deeper into the gossip, the Atlantic then moves to the New York Time’s hit piece on CGI, which was easily picked apart, then moves to Huma Abedin.
Last August, The New York Times raised questions about the management at the Clinton Global Initiative as well as Hillary’s close confident, Huma Abedin, who was allowed to serve as a special government employee at the State Department while she also worked for a private consulting firm founded by a longtime Bill Clinton lieutenant which advised multinational businesses.
Oh, but never fear! The Atlantic decides 2013 “wasn’t an awful year.” Whew, I don’t know what we would have done if they’d decided otherwise.
By ABC News’s count, she garnered at least 19 awards honoring her career in public service. And she reportedly collected up to $200,000 a pop for speeches to several groups ranging from the National Association of Convenience and Fuel Retailing to Goldman Sachs.
Nobody knows if she can win the presidency, including her most loyal supporters. But the undisguised glee with which the Atlantic works so hard to pick at Clinton is not only overexercised, but shoddy in its naked agenda to hit Hillary for the sake of it. They’re certainly not alone.
Gov. Chris Christie was well on his way to launching a presidential campaign when bridgegate started drenching him in negative press. The polls so far were taken before the Hoboken allegations surfaced, so he’s got more to lose, especially with the investigations just getting started. His job at the RGA is going to be rough, too.
Following more than a year of strong bipartisan support, Christie’s favorability rating is now 46 percent favorable to 43 percent unfavorable, down from 65 percent favorable just before his landslide re-election. This drop in support is led by a 26-point decline among Democrats. [Rutgers-Eagleton]
There is absolutely no comparison between where Christie stands and where Hillary sits, so why they’re being compared side to side is obvious. Republicans don’t have anyone else but Christie to challenge the wacko chorus. The establishment is obviously freaked about it, too.
Will Republicans want to stand next to Chris Christie as the 2014 midterms gear up?
Ask any Democrat if they’d like Hillary Clinton to campaign for them. Ask any potential primary voter in the Democratic Party if she or he would go to an event where Clinton would be the speaker introducing the candidate running for office.
Christie is sinking, with negative media stories based in current events that are taking him down.
Hillary remains strong, with the only negative stories possible being concocted out of historical fervor to dig up old news, while revisiting Benghazi as if the last three investigations into it didn’t all confirm each other: could have been prevented; blame goes to everyone involved, including Ambassador Chris Stevens, which is exactly what I’ve been writing since the post-mortem began.
None of this means anything for 2016 this far out. What does matter, however, as we’ve seen before, is the media’s intent to concoct negative reporting against Hillary Clinton week after week, no matter how far she stays out of the picture.