Tag Archives: bill clinton

Will the Clinton Bashing Ever End?

So now that it is all but certain that Hillary Clinton will be our secretary of state, will the Clinton bashing calm down? I doubt it, but I hope so. ohllaryEvery article about tomorrow’s expected announcement has the undertone of distrust. What will she do? Will she undercut his policy and be a big bother taking Obama’s precious time away from more important presidential business? Does Bill still HATE him as everyone is just certain is the truth? Could those Clintons be plotting and planning some sort of coup? I am so tired of this speculation.

Why do they engender this from so many people? There is really no precedent for them in modern American history. Did the Adams’ have this same reaction? The Bushes certainly didn’t have this kind of talk bandied about with them. Nor has the Kennedy clan reached this level of anti-dynastic antipathy. It seems to be about Hillary. Bill definitely burned up some of his political capital during the primaries, but this enmity appears to come from somewhere else. The press has pushed it, but it also comes from both sides of the aisle. What exactly have they done to deserve this?

clintonr_468x612Bill was one of the most popular presidents in modern history both at home and abroad. And during the primary campaign he pissed off a lot of people by supporting his wife. The president shouldn’t be so political they seem to be saying. Bill is the same old Bill, but the political landscaped changed and he didn’t see it coming. His charm paled in comparison to the young Obama. Perhaps it was his pique at this upstart stealing his shine that made him seem less good old boy and more petulant loser. Yet even when it was over and Obama was the candidate, it looked like (from what we were shown on the news) Bill was holding a grudge. Even though Hillary was out doing her best to get Obama elected, the grumblings were everywhere about The Clintons and their dynastic pretensions. And when it was announced that Obama was offering Hillary the Secretary of State position, the floodgates opened wide.

All kinds of stories about the grudge, the Clintonian demands, the drama behinds the scenes, the “leaks” that must have come from the Clintons (despite the fact that many other administration appointments were also disclosed), Bill’s huge problems with conforming to the needs of the Obama administration for his wife’s sake, and on and on they went. Now that Bill has bent over backwards, agreeing to disclose everything about his finances, something that the pundits and prognosticators said would be impossible for him, and agreeing to let the Obama administration in on all his dealings, will the bashing stop?

What is it about this family, this man and woman, that keeps the public in pounce mode? They are both extremely smart, exceptionally capable, hugely charming and clearly ambitious. But both have chosen to devote themselves to public service. Both could certainly have done well in private practice. Maybe ego is a big part of their make-up, but at the level they have reached, who among them is without extreme self-confidence? Do they need a bit more hubris? Maybe. Could they have misjudged their special place in the country? Perhaps. But now that the dust has settled and they are both on board with Obama, can’t we all just get along? Please.

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Hillary Clinton Secretary of Ulterior Motives

Since the news came through that Hillary Clinton might be under consideration for the Obama administration’s secretary of state appointment, the news pundits have had a field day coming up with their reasons behind the choice. Most want to find ulterior motives for it. “He wants her out of the Senate so she won’t be able to give him problems with health care.” “Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer.” “He wants to keep her from running in 2012.”

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But what if he just thinks that she is the best person for the post? What if Obama is simply able to put the primaries behind him and move forward with the job we gave him? I have to say that Hillary in that post didn’t seem like the most obvious to me when I first heard it. What about Sec. of Health and Human Services? What is the experience she brings to the table? But then Kissinger came out and said:

“I believe it would be an outstanding appointment. If it is true, it shows a number of things, including great courage on the part of the President-Elect. To appoint a very strong personality into a prominent cabinet position requires a great deal of courage.”

She knows a wide variety of world leaders and it is clear that the world would be happy with her in the role. I think that Obama would want a strong independent thinker in the role, not someone who would be ruled by the vice president’s office, remember Condi. That Hillary and Obama have not agreed on every policy is not a negative. He is notable for wanting a variety of opinions around him. His mind thrives on synthesizing ideas, taking the best from may voices. Strong people like Hillary would be sure to give that intellect a good work out.

This is the best Hillary could hope for in my opinion, because despite being one of her early supporters, I know that there is still so much hatred of her here in America from both the left and the right, women and men, black and white. Fox News was, as expected, bashing her from the moment she took the stage. And NY Times Columnist Maureen Dowd never missed an opportunity to bash “The Clintons” during the whole cycle. I don’t think Hillary could win the American presidency, not because of the supposed sexism that derailed her; I think that there are people of every persuasion who hated her when she was in the White House with Bill for whatever reason, who would never have voted for her for president, and who will continue to distrust her and Bill until the end of time. Fortunately, if she becomes Secretary of State, those people are all in the US and her job will be in the world at large where they like her and respect her husband. So it is in the end the best of both worlds for her — huge responsibility and respect. And good for all of us, too.

The fly in the ointment may be Bill. Will his many international business and philanthropic dealings become a conflict of interest if Hillary takes the office? If he makes a speech that voices an opinion that runs counter to the new administration’s policy, is the family association enough to say that Hillary must address it. Putting a muzzle on Bill and expecting him to pull back on his agenda might be the only thing to derail this appointment.

This is the first time in history this has come up and I find it fascinating. Talk about sexism or gender politics! This could easily become the most interesting he said/she said ever.

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