Clinton's Sincerity Moment

by: Matt Stoller

Mon Jan 07, 2008 at 16:23

Echidne is right.  Several people have passed me this video of Clinton getting emotional about politics, with sneering comments.  The headline on the ABC News piece is 'Can Clinton's Emotions Get the Best of Her?'  When Edwards almost gets choked up and talks about how personal XYZ person is on the trail, he's just passionate.  When Clinton does it, she suddenly becomes a hysterical weak woman.

I thought her appearance was one of the sweetest, toughest, and most forthright expressions of Hillary Clinton's belief system I have ever seen.  She genuinely believes this country is lost without someone who knows how to deal with the massive problems we're facing, and she genuinely doesn't think Obama can do it.  Moreover, she looks kind of lost in the politics, unable to comprehend how her decades of hard work and compromises could be rejected by voters.  Don't they see that Obama isn't ready?  Can't they go beyond the rhetoric and look at substance?  She has gotten plenty of liberal policies done, why are the liberals voting for someone else?  Whatever you may think of Clinton, she has put her whole life into public service.

I was on the trail for three days last week, and it is incredibly tiring.  Candidates go from event to event, eating pizza, sleeping little, surrounded by press and fans and opponents in a high pressure atmosphere.  That Clinton does it, and expresses herself so sweetly in this appearance, is to her credit, even if the cynical, nasty, and misogynistic press corps doesn't get it.  She understands just how mean and unfair they are.  What she doesn't understand is that liberal politics are winning politics.

... Michael Kieschnick has more.  And Todd Gitlin is right - John Edwards is acting like a prick.

Matt Stoller :: Clinton's Sincerity Moment

Tags: , (All Tags)
Print Friendly View Send As Email

This is what I don't get .. (2.00 / 2)
she knows the media are out to get her .. at least a lot of us knew it and have known it.  Are you telling me she and her campaign doesn't?  It's not excusing the press mind you.  They are some of the most despicable people around.  I'm just saying she can't win no matter what.  While she is a smart politician, it's interesting how she didn't take one important lesson from her fellow Senator from AZ.  The TradMed performs nearly interrupted fluffing of McCain because he knows how to play them like a drum

She Can Win If... (2.67 / 3)
The people line up behind her. And she still may win in upcoming states despite who the  David Brooks' of the world want to be the Democratic Candidate.

I have one thing to say to Obama supporters:

How in the hell can Democrats on the blogs who chastised Pelosi and Reid for giving into the republicans support someone who is promising to give into the republicans?

Someone wrote "Jim Jones" yesterday in reference to Obama. Well that may be a good analogy because he has people supporting something that they just spent the last two years bitching about - the bi-partisan attitude of the Democratic congress.

It doesn't get any weirder that that.

[ Parent ]
Heh. (0.00 / 0)
Clinton had her time, and she blew it. She may deserve a second chance, but this is real life, and there are no second chances here.

Second chances (0.00 / 0)
Strangely, there have been plenty of second chances but all for Republicans.  Nixon lost in 1960 ... won in 1968 and 1972.  Reagan lost the nomination in both 1968 and 1976 ... won in 1980 and 1984.  George H.W. Bush lost the nomination in 1980 (but became VP) ... won in 1988.  Even Bob Dole ... lost the nomination in 1988 but won it in 1996.  Which leaves us with Gerald Ford (essentially outside the system as he was not elected either President or VP) and George W. Bush whose entire life for 20 years or more consisted of second and third and fourth and fifth chances.

Democratic politicians with a second chance?  You have to go way back to people like Andrew Jackson, Grover Cleveland, and Thomas Jefferson.  Or the most spectacular second chance:  FDR.  Lost as VP nominee in 1920, got polio and then came the greatest second chance ever: elected Governor of NY, elected President four times.  (OK, Bryant got a second and a third chance but was never elected and Adlai Stevenson got a second chance without being elected).

[ Parent ]
Gore (0.00 / 0)
Gore was actually the last one to get a "second chance" for the Dems... he ran in 1988 and won Tennessee and a few other Southern states. He did come in through the back door of the Vice Presidency (like George H.W.), but he got his chance. If Obama is indeed the nominee in 2008, she could give it another go in 2016 (or, God forbid, 2012)

[ Parent ]
I think (3.20 / 5)
you got it right Matt.  She honestly believes what she is saying.  It is not all for show and she is very much frustrated and upset with the way this is playing out.  Understandable, given the personal investment she has made in this race.

However, from a political operative point of view, this story is not playing well for her unless you watch that video.  It looks pretty terrible in print and does not sound that great in just audio.  You have to see her face and the intimacy of that setting with her sitting down, presumably surrounded by people in a fairly small room.

Oh She Is Very Sincere (2.67 / 3)
And she is right also.

She has the experience - years of experience - to know what works and what doesn't and that is what our country needs right now. Obama doesn't have that.

Clinton isn't perfect, but neither is Obama. I'll take Clinton's lifetime record of progressive activism and experience at this most important time in our countries history any day over Obama's feel good message without thinking twice.

We already saw the other night what the republicans are going to do to Obama. And it is a box he can't maneuver out of. He can't properly respond to what they said about him the other night now and he won't be able to properly respond to it in three months.

Obama is a gamble. And the gamble is another Scalia on the SCOTUS for the rest of our lives. The gamble is healthcare which Obama has already compromised on in his plan. The gamble is more war via any of the republicans who could beat him. The gamble is the environment. The gamble is clean renewable energy versus big oil. The gamble is our children's future and the future of our country.

The republicans have come too far in the last eight years to give it up now. They want Obama - that is clear - because he is their best shot at retaking the WH for themselves.

Why in the hell do people support a compromiser when it is a fighter that we need?

You can see from the video that Clinton is sincere and wants to turn us back in the right direction. As opposed to Obama whose main goal IMO is to become President. He speaks happy talk. Clinton says let's fight.

Well in the upcoming decade the opponent will be the same guys. They are not going to bend for anybody. They are not going to give up their gains without a fight. We all know that.

So who do you want to go up against them? A happy talker or a fighter? An orator or a dig your heals in brawler who has seen this fight before?

Idealism or the WH, and all that comes with it. That is the choice Democrats have.

[ Parent ]
Clinton can still fight for what she believes (4.00 / 3)
As a leader in the Senate.  Look, if you aren't just a paid Hillary shill, you know that a Democratic Pres doesn't get programs enacted just the way they are proposed--Dems aren't lockstep like the GOP.  It is up the Congress to write the laws.  Hillary can fight for her version of everything in the Senate and help corral enough votes to break any GOP filibusters.  She can make health care mandatory, or even single payer, if she fights hard enough and has the votes. Maybe even easier from the Senate.  Same on every issue.

The big problem with Hillary is that she talks about working for change, but under Bill and since, it has all been incremental--no vision from the Dems, her included.  And returning to the halcyon days of the Bill Clinton presidency just has too much baggage for most people.  Every time he gets up there on the stage he undercuts her.  If she's so effective, how come she has to always lean on him and his presidency?  She can't have it both ways.

I think Hillary is a very smart and capable person.  But she's wrong for these times, and she could be much more effective fighting and opposing the right-wing machine by leading in the Senate.  Hard for her to swallow, but if it isn't really just about her and Bill getting back to the WH, that is really something to sink her teeth into.

John McCain--He's not who you think he is.

[ Parent ]
First Of All (4.00 / 3)
Everyone who is passionate for a candidate other than yours isn't a shill. That was a bad, but all to common, way to start off a post - but a sure giveaway for what you were going to say.

The fact is that you have no idea what Clinton has fought for and what bills she has sponsored and co-sponsored and supported. If you did you wouldn't be saying what you are. You and others think if you don't read about something in the press because it was passed then no one was fighting for it. Well you are wrong about that. Many Dems in the Senate fight for things and draw up bills that never see the light of day because we were in  the minority or leadership decided not to present it. But that doesn't mean Clinton and others were not trying to make things happen.

Perhaps that is why she wants to be President so she is in a better position to make things happen.

You are entitled to your opinion to where you think Hillary should be but she who has much more political experience than you do disagrees with you. And so do I.

And you know what? Much to your surprise - she isn't Bill Clinton and has always been more liberal than Bill too.

[ Parent ]
I fleshed out my comment (0.00 / 0)
into a post on my personal blog Ruck Pad.

The timing of this should have an effect on the results tomorrow.

[ Parent ]
What a nice post (4.00 / 7)
I'm not a Clinton supporter but I am offended and outraged at the number of Obama (and possibly Edwards) supporters using right wing attacks on her, or just rank misogyny ("bitch").

If she were half the horrible things people say about her, she'd be a republican. 

I hope no one posts the obvious stupid attack on every prominent blogger who says anything nice about any candidate, that Matt is a shill for Hillary etc. 

Hillary is getting far more vitriol from the left than she deserves.  We don't want her to be the nominee, but let's not drive her out of the party or something. 

errrrr.,,.,, (4.00 / 1)
When I look around 'leftist' blogs I simply don't see this. Me thinks maybe Clinton supporters are inventing this misogyny  to turn their favorite candidate into a victim?

End this war. Stop John McCain. Cindy McCain is filthy rich.

[ Parent ]
Being a Woman (0.00 / 0)
I assure you not all democrats who think that Hillary is a nasty piece of work are misogynists.

BTW there is no way she would have got to where she has in the republican party -- the Big Tent has worked out v. nicely for her -- bringing all those corporate donors into the Democratic with no restraints, democratic party policy platforms be damned.

Hillary has got what she deserves.  She ignored the grassroots, turned her back on the progressives and went instead with the elites and special interests groups --  thinking she didn't need the little people.  Well, the ground swell from Iowa (especially the youth) and now New Hampshire proves her judgement was wrong again.

[ Parent ]
misogyny is misogyny (4.00 / 1)
(hope I'm spelling that right).  Anyway being a woman doesn't really make one immune to using misogynistic attacks, though I would guess it makes it rarer.

There's critiquing hillary for progressive/liberal reasons (like you did) and then there is calling her a whore or a bitch (which you did not).  I'm seeing too much of the latter in blogging commentary (not from prominent bloggers).  That's my complaint.

[ Parent ]
Yeah, I thought it seemed sexist too. (4.00 / 2)
She had a few small creaks in her voice; I certainly didn't see any tears. 

How refreshing (4.00 / 8)
to hear someone treating her like a human being, with compassion and understanding.  You know, acting with liberal qualities.  Thank you, Matt.  Hillary's not my candidate of choice, but I surely do appreciate it when she is treated fairly and I take special notice of men who treat women with respect.  She hasn't gotten a lot of it, particularly since Saturday night's debate. 

The press can't digest real sincerity; they puke it up (0.00 / 0)
I totally agree with both elements of your post Matt.

Candidates go from event to event, eating pizza, sleeping little, surrounded by press and fans and opponents in a high pressure atmosphere.  That Clinton does it, and expresses herself so sweetly in this appearance, is to her credit, even if the cynical, nasty, and misogynistic press corps doesn't get it.  She understands just how mean and unfair they are.  What she doesn't understand is that liberal politics are winning politics.

The good news for Clinton (assuming she doesn't get the nomination and that the Dems do well in November, both of which seem likely) is that she can continue to play an important role in creating a prolonged political reformation.  We'll need every good, sincere and strong leader out there, and she is clearly one of them.

Clinton moment (4.00 / 1)
Politics is a tough business and all of the candidates are putting their heart and soul into this endeavor.

She and Bill have had a lot of success in politics, but she has not experienced a electoral loss like most of her peers.

How do you think Al Gore felt after the 2000 election especially when it was stolen from him.

She is now being tested and yes life is not fair.

[ Parent ]
sorry billary..........bury that warmongering sob (0.00 / 1)

so now she a little crybaby cuz she's not going to win...

ahhhhhhhhh......what about all the soldiers moms that have been crying
oceans of tears when their boys and girls got slaughtered cuz hillary
was more interested in keeping her viable for 08...bad choice..

i will loathe u and ur whole dlc enamblers forever.........

good riddance!!!!!!!!!!

Little harsh. Dont you think? (4.00 / 1)

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join and fight for progressive change.  

[ Parent ]
maznyc (0.00 / 0)
You are complete scum and should eat shit and die.

[ Parent ]
crying... (0.00 / 0)
Lemme be the first Obama supporter to say that I think the moment was good for her and actually made her look human. I doubt it will hurt it at all besides the people who already hate her making fun.

I don't hate Clinton, or Edwards. In fact I like them both. But Obama is about to steamroll the competition and they are going to be left in the dust. His is an inspirational movement and quite frankly Clinton and Edwards don't inspire anybody. Obama will continue to win by wider and wider margins of victory until Clinton finally (hopefully graciously) bows out.

I know you bloggers are sad about your favorite candidate (Edwards) who panders to you being defeated but you guys seriously need to get with the movement. Obama is marching to victory and is going to change the entire political landscape of this country. Get on board before its too late. You bloggers need to focus your efforts on the Bush Dogs cause Obama is not your enemy and chances are he will sign any legislation that you can get the Bush Dogs to vote for.

Give Obama a freaking chance. So far you guys all critisize his rhetoric. How bout you wait until he actually DOES something wrong before you attack? I'd bet if you guys would just give him a chance he will not dissapoint you and may even bring TONS of new young voters into our party if you let him permanently changing the political landscape of this country.

End this war. Stop John McCain. Cindy McCain is filthy rich.

WHAT!? (4.00 / 2)
...quite frankly Clinton and Edwards don't inspire anybody.

First off, anyone preaching economic injustice the way Edwards does is very inspiring - at least to me. What other mainstream national figure speaks out the way Edwards has over the last year?

And if you don't think people are inspired by the possibility of the first female president in American history, then you must not be… I can't even find the words.

"Don't hate the media, become the media" -Jello Biafra

[ Parent ]
Clinton (4.00 / 1)
inspired women for the last fifteen years here and around the world. I don't need inspiration. She's "depressing?" We have serious problems and she wants to fix them. Edwards and Obama are empty suits in comparison.

Banned for posting five straight diaries.

[ Parent ]
"Empty Suits" my ass (0.00 / 0)
Both of those men have lived remarkable lives full of accomplishment. Besides, living in Washington D.C. for a couple decades does not make a leader.

We have serious problems and she wants to fix them.

Yeah, and Edwards and Obama are running for president because they think it would be neato. Only Hillary wants to fix things. Again, my ass.

"Don't hate the media, become the media" -Jello Biafra

[ Parent ]
I wasn't responding to you (0.00 / 0)
but the previous poster. Anyway, she has a lifetime of substantial contributions, since her college days at least. Compared to her, empty suits and hot air (I almost said hair).

Banned for posting five straight diaries.

[ Parent ]
Her lifetime progressive rating (4.00 / 1)
is 16th in the Senate compared to Obama who's 24th in the Senate. Kennedy and Boxer are at 7 and 8.

Banned for posting five straight diaries.

[ Parent ]
getting with the movement... (0.00 / 0)
I find this comment quite arrogant and unfortunately, what you say reflects on your candidate...

I just spent the weekend pondering whether I would give up on my favorite candidate and switch to Obama. To be honest, I had to do some self-examination about why and how I was going to vote. But I guess I don't appreciate threats of being "steamrolled"  and "left in the dust."

I'll be sending in my California absentee ballot soon. Unless something changes in the next week,  I'm back to deciding between Clinton and Edwards. Well, at least I gave Obama a "freaking chance."

[ Parent ]
Over-Hyped Bull (4.00 / 1)
I have been reading articles about this crying moment all day and could not watch the video until I got home. The whole day I have been giving Hillary a moment of pause asking myself why I have been so willing to shut the door on her.

Then I saw the video.

You've got to be kidding me.

First of all she really does not get all that emotional.

This is one of the most over-hyped news pieces I have seen in this election--and Matt, I love you man, but I think you over-hyped it too.

Secondly, she barely has time to blink and she is already attacking again--saying 'some' have not thought through what they would do that first day.

Come on!

I started to believe her when she said this is about our kids and about our country--but in the same breath she went back into attack.

I don't know if the moment was staged, but it did not feel genuine or important to me.

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join and fight for progressive change.  

Related impressions: (0.00 / 0)
One, I read the coverage at TPM before I saw the video, including Edwards' attack on her over it.

Two, all the attacks in print, all the sneering headlines, totally sucked.

Three, I watched the video, and it was oversold.  Her voice broke a little, and she gave the fundamental pitch for her presidency right after, but I'm inclined to think that was her at her very best (most authentic, most expressive, most sincere) and it still didn't come off as very good. 

My guess is that the reason she gets called "calculating" is that with her, it's very easy to see that what she's saying is only a small subset of what she's thinking, and that as with all politicians she's committed to not revealing to you most of what she's thinking, and is also strategizing in real time on what she can say to successfully and convincingly conceal big parts of what she's thinking.  This is standard operating procedure for politicians and probably lawyers and some other types of professionals as well, but it's really easy to see in her that what you get is not all of what there is.  Whereas Obama and Bill do all the same things, but have this uncanny property of appearing to be thinking only exactly what they are saying to you at that moment.  That's why they seem "authentic": it seems like what you are getting from them is exactly and everything they have.  It's not true of course, but it's a damn useful illusion.  Hillary and Obama are calculating in exactly the same degree, but somehow you can't see it with him and it's quite painfully obvious with her.

Who knows, that may be just be me and my impression of her, but I think it's probably not.

And four, I'm prepared to believe that an awful lot of campaign coverage is of non-events like this.  There's a lot of people on a bus being paid to write stories about what happened that day, and if nothing happened that day and they write that, they look bad.  So every day some damn thing or other is going to get turned into Significant News, when most of it really isn't.  I think a lot of their coverage is turning insignificant stuff into significant stuff, and a lot of our blogosphere coverage is reacting to the insignificant stuff they're publishing.  Which is not to say I think Matt is wrong to comment or that his comment is bad; on the contrary, he's right to comment in this instance and for once I agree with practically all of it.  It's just that this thirty second clip might easily drive the entire newscycle today (John Edwards already commented on it twice, and Obama at least once), and that's a monstrous disgrace.  We can't have a press that "works" that way.

[ Parent ]
She guarded (0.00 / 0)
not calculating because she's a woman. Everything she's said in the last fifteen years has been dissected and raked over.

Banned for posting five straight diaries.

[ Parent ]
I've noticed that, too (4.00 / 1)
I didn't fully realize how bad things could get for women until I saw my kid sister head off for law school last year.  She totally has to watch what she says and how she delivers it, especially considering the online backlash against female students (AutoAdmit; it's horrible).  I see Clinton a bit differently now, like, she's trying to avoid getting hit.

[ Parent ]
Obama walks a similar line (0.00 / 0)
BooMan had an insightful post recently about how Obama has a non-combative tone by necessity.  Arguably, Obama is better at avoiding backlash because of skill and not media bias, which gives him greater potential for actually accomplishing something as president.

Things You Don't Talk About in Polite Company: Religion, Politics, the Occasional Intersection of Both

[ Parent ]
I absolutely agree. But Hillary lost me. (0.00 / 0)
But I think there is room for criticism as well.

I think if it were someone like Donna Edwards, Darcy Burner, or someone who I trusted as a person it would seem different.

I just don't trust HRC.

I have watched her campaign and vote and attack people for one thing and then say it just weeks later.

On election night 2006 I argued with someone that Hillary should be the next president.

She had me and she lost me.

So did Edwards.

I have watched all three closely, and Obama won me over.

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join and fight for progressive change.  

[ Parent ]
Politicians (0.00 / 0)
I have watched her campaign and vote and attack people for one thing and then say it just weeks later.

Haven't you noticed that every politician does this?

Banned for posting five straight diaries.

[ Parent ]
I find it interesting (0.00 / 0)
that every time someone levels a valid critique here of HRC, her supporters can only come back with-- all politicians do that.

It is interesting to see the cynicism about politicians as a defense against a politician.

When you defend your candidate via cynicism you know you have no argument.

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join and fight for progressive change.  

[ Parent ]
Every politician (0.00 / 0)
does what you said about Clinton. That's all.

Banned for posting five straight diaries.

[ Parent ]
Again. You prove my point. (0.00 / 0)

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join and fight for progressive change.  

[ Parent ]
If everyone else does it (0.00 / 0)
You're using a double standard towards women.

Banned for posting five straight diaries.

[ Parent ]
That's public life, especially (0.00 / 0)
at the level she sought.

Look, I'm an old theatre geek, and I actually do feel for pols because they have only an image, not a properly differentiated character, behind which to hide.  But there's still a demand for a particular talent, the ability to connect with others while inhabiting the sort of quasi-character that is one's public persona, that is appropriate for the top levels of politics in a media-driven world.  It's a cliche, but the Kennedy-Nixon race really did change the standards.

Having said that, the talent I mentioned is really too rare for us to expect all national politicians to have it... but those who don't need to cultivate something else appealing in themselves.  People on the world stage, like any performers, need to understand the space & acoustics & the audience, and learn to work with it.  That's just part of the job.

[ Parent ]
Attack? (0.00 / 0)
She drew contrasts; she didn't "attack" anyone.  Yes, I saw the video.

[ Parent ]
She didn't name names but (0.00 / 0)
but if you've been following her campaign in the last 2 weeks, you can easily fill in the blanks.

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join and fight for progressive change.  

[ Parent ]
Again (0.00 / 0)
She drew contrasts.  I never said she wasn't referring to Obama or Edwards, I questioned the "attack" claim, which is stretching it.  There's a difference.

This is a typical stump speech.  She's supposed to convince people.  How you do that without contrasts is beyond me.

[ Parent ]
Cheap shots (0.00 / 0)
I heard no discussion of policy.
And the fact that you can fill in Obama/Edwards indicates that both of us know what she meant.

Saying someone who has been running for President all year (or someone who ran before and is running again) hasn't thought about their first day is a dumb cheat shot.

Face it.

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join and fight for progressive change.  

[ Parent ]
Hey (0.00 / 0)
Give me some specific policy you've heard from Obama lately. It's mostly empty rhetoric and snark for his opponents.  Don't get self-righteous about it.

[ Parent ]
So you're conceding that I am right? (0.00 / 0)

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join and fight for progressive change.  

[ Parent ]
Thanks for the post (4.00 / 2)
I think it did capture her actual feelings on the campaign, and her thoughts. 

Halfway through, she reverted back to the her stump speech, but yeah, the first 15-20 seconds was very honest, very sweet.

Lots of haters here, even in our small little progressive community.

Quite a shame.

I don't consider myself a hater... (4.00 / 1)
.... like I said, all day I have been pondering whether I have 
been unfair in dismissing her. But then I saw the video. She jumps back into attacks so easily that I don't buy it. I feel bad for her, I do think she intends well, but she is not the politician I want, particularly because I do not see her as real. I do not trust her. McCain-- I don't like his votes or his many of his views, but I trust him to be McCain. I don't even know who Clinton is. If she wants to convince me she is real, she can start by firing her campaign manager.

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join and fight for progressive change.  

[ Parent ]
What was she supposed to do? (0.00 / 0)
Honestly, she stumbled, kind of got a tad emotional and then got back to answering their questions.  If you're a candidate and you're trying to convince voters to vote for you, should you just keep talking about how hard it has been for you or do you move on?  It's the standard stump speech.  Nothing more.

[ Parent ]
Haven't you noticed (0.00 / 0)
everyone attacking each other? But Clinton tends to get blamed. For example, there were many sexist remarks from Obama before the recent terrible racist remarks. He criticized her for planning to be president BEFORE her remark about his kindergarten essay.

Banned for posting five straight diaries.

[ Parent ]
I do feel bad for her who wouldn't (0.00 / 0)

It fits into  Clintonian triangulation,

She is crying, and upset, but instantly reverts to her latest campaign slogans, which according to ALL she has formulated.
I know this may be cynical, but anyone who has seen Hillary up close over the years, knows she doesn't pee unless she knows how it will be viewed. She is throwing everything out and seeing what will stick and help, this will help a little, but not 10 points worth.

Have you even met her? (4.00 / 2)
I have.  And I can tell you that's just bullshit.  Seriously.  And your Clinton charge of "triangulation" is Obama's "unity" and "bipartisanship."

Again, the woman is a damn politician during an election: she's supposed to be trying to persuade people.  Do you know any politician who hasn't ever thought out what they're going to say?  Anyone?

Good Lord.

[ Parent ]
Wow (0.00 / 0)
I mean wow, um, wow.

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join and fight for progressive change.  

[ Parent ]
Actually I HAVE met her (0.00 / 0)
My partner actually worked in the Clinton WH for 8 years. I have seen her in action, and though I would like to believe her, because people DO change....She has NOT.
Convincing is one thing, using crying to get votes...UM NO SALE!

[ Parent ]
She Gets A Bad Rap (4.00 / 1)
Very nice and thoughtful piece Matt.  I have always thought Hillary got a bad rap.  She is not the monster the Repubs and the press have made her out to be.  She has done and attempted to do a lot of good things over the years, her vote on Iraq not withstanding. 

The problem she has is the country appears to be ready to move beyond the Bush-Clinton rotation we have been in for 20 yrs.  I sense the country is ready for something very different and that is why Obama and Huckabee seem to be catching the imagination of their respective parties.  In the end neither may capture their parties nominations but their Iowa wins have already shaped the 2008 race. 

Alternatively (0.00 / 0)
This is her Martha Alito moment, and we've all been had.  I want to believe this is real and authentic, but fifteen years of Clintons lead to a certain level of cynicism.

Just curious (0.00 / 0)
Do you ever say anything positive about Dems who aren't Obama?

[ Parent ]
all the time (0.00 / 0)
Worked my ass off to try to get Edwards the extra $3M+ in matching funds for the ActBlue contributions.  And I think Sen. Clinton is a figure of historic importance whose election would be transformative for America.  I just think we've got a better option.

[ Parent ]
Whatever you do in your day job, (0.00 / 0)
I can't count the number of times I've seen you jump into a pro-Edwards thread on DKos or MyDD just to crap on it with anti-Edwards talking points, like the 527 business that Obama suddenly dropped when it looked like he was winning again. (I don't look at pro-Clinton threads that often, so I don't know what you do there). Frankly, most of my negative impression of Obama's online supporters is because of the behavior of you and a few others.

[ Parent ]
Agreed (4.00 / 6)
What I can't stand that in addition to the obvious bigotry she encounters (daily gender obsession by the press, slurs, bigoted stereotypes, sheer hate), the public refuses to hold all--namely, Obama--to the same standards as her on voting record, policies, rhetoric, campaign donors, behavior.  Honestly, it's a repeat of Election 2000 coverage where Bush could get away with anything and Gore would get slammed for things that simply didn't happen.  Can you imagine the hell Clinton would've gotten if she pulled a McClurkin or Axelrod?  My God, people shriek with absolute hysteria with regards to her.

I have met Mrs. Clinton on a few occasions and sat in the audience to hear her deliver a keynote address: she truly is a (surprisingly) warm, charming, and witty person.  She is also remarkably competent.

I wish we wouldn't get fooled by the press and our prejudices and learn to get past Obama's rhetoric and the right-wing caricatures of Edwards and Clinton.

Yes. (4.00 / 1)
The fucked up thing about all this is that she only got emotional when she started talking about what has happened to this country over the past eight hears.  I don't want her talking about that like a policy wonk robot.

I think she's too conservative, but this makes me like her a hell of a lot more.  She sees what has happened, and wants to fight it.  We might agree about how and what, but she's at least on my side.  She at least sees the world like a progressive and not a conservative. 

[ Parent ]
Perhaps she's afraid? (0.00 / 0)
I think she would've been a lot more competitive if she had dropped Mark Penn and went out as herself.  She is a fighter.  She is a progressive trying to fight (although she's battling within the system).  She gives a damn, but she's too damn scared (I don't blame her) of the press, it seems, in particular, like, "What will people say about me?"  I can't imagine living like that.

I don't want her to get the nomination though because I fear the very thing that happened in this thread: verdict first, trial later.  People already have deeply entrenched, usually hostile, feelings towards her; no matter what she does it'll only confirm their views of her.

Hopefully, she'll take a page from Sen. Kennedy and become a true progressive champion in the senate.

[ Parent ]
Doubt it. More like a page from Lieberman. (0.00 / 0)

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join and fight for progressive change.  

[ Parent ]
Sen Kennedy (0.00 / 0)
You mean "too old" and "get some spine" Ted, according to Obama?

[ Parent ]
Is that a failure of the media (0.00 / 0)
Or is that a success of Obama?  Is he just a better politician?

Things You Don't Talk About in Polite Company: Religion, Politics, the Occasional Intersection of Both

[ Parent ]
I blame the press (4.00 / 1)
I don't think Clinton can really compete with Obama in terms of charisma on the campaign trail (Who can?), but the press is just out to get her.

[ Parent ]
Wow you sound like Bush decrying the media. (4.00 / 1)
Come on. For nearly a year they carried the 'inevitable' frame  the whole way.

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join and fight for progressive change.  

[ Parent ]
Obama very obviously went after the Villager vote (0.00 / 0)
What do you think the talk about SS was about?

Presumably learning from the McCain playbook: the first primary is with the press.

[ Parent ]
Yeah, Clinton would NEVER use RWTP, NEVER (0.00 / 0)
  Facing the prospect of defeat in tomorrow's primary, Hillary Clinton just made her strongest suggestion yet that the next president may face a terrorist attack - and that she would be the best person to handle it.

  She pointed out that the day after Gordon Brown took office as the British prime minister, there was a failed attempt at a double bombing in London and Glasgow.

  "I don't think it was by accident that Al Qaeda decided to test the new prime minister," she said. "They watch our elections as closely as we do, maybe more closely than some of our fellows citizens do…. Let's not forget you're hiring a president not just to do what a candidate says during the election, you want a president to be there when the chips are down."


Sorry, I feel for Clinton, but your Saint Hillary portrayal was a bit over the top.

[ Parent ]
Sorry if I misread your original comment (0.00 / 0)
I thought you were implying that Obama was caricaturing Edwards and Clinton in right wing frames in your last sentences.  I re-read your comment, and I think you're talking about the media.  I'm sorry if I misconstrued what you were going for.

That said, her use of Rudy Giuliani talking points lately is a bit disappointing.

[ Parent ]
I was starting to feel bad for her... (0.00 / 0)
The hype on her crying moment is extremely sexist.  Edwards jumping on her for it was pretty classless.  Obama at least acknowledged the rigors of the campaign and seemed to feel for her.


However, HRC has decided it's Giuliani time and has been hyping terrorism, implying that the terrorists are just itching for an Obama win.  I don't have any sympathy for this, which is not just a Republican talking point, but a Dick Cheney talking point, and a Rudy Giuliani signature.


I deplore some of the media coverage about Hillary, and appreciate her public service, but America is passing her by, for reasons like the above, because of Iraq, and because frankly, she's just in the right place at the wrong time.  My guess is if she ran in 2004, she'd be president right now.

I hate to be cliched, but times have changed.

Thank you, Hillary, and good night.

Edwards did not jump on her (4.00 / 1)
He was trying not to comment since he did not know the circumstances.  He was caught off the bus.  And he just went to a general comment.  The question was sexist and his response was being general.  The press always tries to make him look bad.  They got two for one in this deal.

Join other progressives at EENRblog

[ Parent ]
A human moment from a candidate (0.00 / 0)
God forbid that a candidate is allowed to be human.

I did find disturbing that she, and apparently she alone, is capable of leading the nation. This is the central hubris of her campaign.

I hate to say it... (4.00 / 1)
but I finally watched the video and I honestly think she was faking. I think it was planned and some adviser told her to cry.

I don't think there would be anything wrong with it if she genuinely got emotional, like the Dutch guy at the global warming meeting, but I think she is faking. If she isn't faking it at least LOOKS like shes faking which is a bad thing. Like someone else mentioned earlier in this thread she often looks like she "isn't saying all that she is thinking" which makes her seem more dishonest than others.

I didn't want to think it was fake but then I saw the video. I really didn't want to say it either but if I saw it then other people did too I don't know why everybody is afraid to say this looks fake.

End this war. Stop John McCain. Cindy McCain is filthy rich.

you're an idiot. (0.00 / 0)

For some reason, it seems that Obama has some pathological and deep-seated psychological need for Republicans to like him.  Seriously.  It's weird.

[ Parent ]
You sound just like Hillary (0.00 / 0)

We won the Battle. Now the Real Fight for Change Begins. Join and fight for progressive change.  

[ Parent ]
me idiot? (0.00 / 0)
I said in my post that maybe it was genuine, but the fact that it didn't really look much like it is a problem in and of itself. If she did cry, nothing against her.

Dick Morris seems to think it wasn't calculated and it was a spontaneous. I'll take his word for it as he knows her well. It just seemed so well timed to help "lighten up her image." On the other hand it makes her look petty for being upset about losing a PRIMARY. If Democrats lost the general election I would cry my self.

End this war. Stop John McCain. Cindy McCain is filthy rich.

[ Parent ]
I Have A Little Fingers Worth Of Sympathy For Hillary (0.00 / 0)
Where was the tears and sympathy yesterday when Natalie's mother got up to talk about how the insurance companies killed her daughter.  I think Hillary said that JRE was using her for political reasons.  Where is the outrage on that?  I did not see any on this blog.  The Clintons know what they are doing, and they will use any excuse or faking emotion to get what they want.  After all, Bill Clinton used race to win in the Georgia primary to win.  Ask Jesse Jackson.  I think Hillary was tired and played it up for the press.  I mean how did the MSM find out about it.  Don't you think the Clintons made sure the MSM covered this???  If Hillary really cared about americans she would give all her money back to lobbyist and tell them to go screw themselves.  She should definitely tell the drug companies and the health insurance companies to go screw themselves.

Observing the collapse of a dynasty (4.00 / 1)
If I were Hillary Clinton I would feel like crying too. We are witnessing a very public and historic moment, the collapse of the Clinton political dynasty. Its kinda sad. But it doesn't change a thing.

Collapse of a dynasty (0.00 / 0)
Your subject line reminded me of George HW Bush's tears when considering his own family's legacy in ruins. I didn't interpret Hillary's choke-up that way myself.

[ Parent ]
Sexist Questions by Reporters to Edwards and Obama (0.00 / 0)
To ask about Clinton's emotional state or reaction to a question by some other woman.

I think Edwards was smart Not to answer the question since he wasn't there.  If Matt thinks that question was fair game, and if Edwards is a prick for not answering it as sympathetic, then there is a lack of emotional IQ going on here.  Why isn't anyone questioning the reporters on this instead of blaming Edwards for his lack of comments?

Not sexist (0.00 / 0)
Just giving Edwards and Obama an opportunity to make mistakes and to stir up potential conflict.  No one wants to see a nice campaign.

Things You Don't Talk About in Polite Company: Religion, Politics, the Occasional Intersection of Both

[ Parent ]
HRC's Dean Moment (0.00 / 0)
I don't think she was faking it... but I don't think Gitlin had it right either == Edwards basically came out with the TRUTH == i.e. her weakest flaw, her inconsistency and what could be the tearing down of her facade.  We can not afford to have a candidate who loses it one moment playing the victim role, and then the next moment breaks down when things aren't going her way -- Bottom line this will not get US votes from those who are the real misogynists who have a problem with 'any' woman getting the job of Commander in Chief.

Politics is nasty... real nasty... Clinton played hard coming start out with the meme that she was entitled to get the DEM nomination, progressives be dammed, that she was more than prepared to threaten Obama donors [Huffington], and even threaten to destroy careers if she were to get to the WH [Matthew Yglesias]. So when I see a POLITICAN tearing up over her POLL numbers, under stress whatever (so early in the Primary) excuse me for feeling a tad jaded and not having the viceral response to want to attack the messenger (Edwards) who is basically doing us a favor and reminding us the kind of battle we are in.

here here! (4.00 / 1)
Now I'm not for Hillary because just like Obama she's bought and paid for by corporate lobbyists.

But watching the MSM right now I'm very disgusted by all of this.

I think they are crucifying her because she's a strong woman and I watched that little piece thinking the same thing, she really cares, she has some sort of agenda she wants to do and she knows it's in huge peril.

Frankly I think bought and paid for Hillary would be the one who has a better chance of enacting a few progressive policies than change (to what) Obama simply because they are both beholden to corporate lobbyists but the Clintons know much better on how to play the game. 

Anyway, watching voters be all thrilled by Obama who do not have one clue, not a one on his voting record or positions is positively frightening.

If they agreed with his positions that would be different, but on the TV, they are interviewing them and they do not know.

But, yeah, the entire MSM and especially the Huffington Post is doing a complete hack job on Clinton, no doubt about it.  

The Economic Populist

Clinton better at playing the game (4.00 / 1)
hmm. There's an old saying in politics, and I'm paraphrasing. If you can't take their money and vote against them, you don't belong in politics.

I still think Clinton stands for Business as Usual, but still something to consider.

[ Parent ]
John Edwards is NOT acting like a prick! (0.00 / 0)
Just because he has the "audacity" to stay in a race that the media keeps telling him to quit, and he doesn't have the fawning press of THE ONETM doesn't mean he can't say what he wants to say.

You are a HRC partisan. Fine. What HRC did attacking Edwards for highlighting the plight of the Sarkysian Family (whom contacted Edwards first, not the other way around) is shameless, desperate, and shows how disconnected she is from the everyday problems people out there are facing. People who don't have the luxury of getting CEOs or Oprah on the phone at a moment's notice.

She's in the game, she can take the slings and arrows that come with the stakes.

As you HRC partisans were so fond of telling us nonsupporters way back in the summer when Hillary's nomination was all but assured: Get used to it.

Bozonic Comment (0.00 / 0)
Calling Matt a HRC partisan is about as ignorant as it can get on this site. I forgot how primary season brings out the hit-and-run partisan commenters.

I imagine the signal-to-noise ratio will be much better in another month or so.

Karl in Drexel Hill, PA

[ Parent ]
Calling JRE a prick is sexist in itself. (0.00 / 0)
...and just as absurd as calling HC something analogous when trying to make the point that she is gender-biased.

This is not the time to be buying into whatever spin the MSM chooses to couch the little press they afford JRE.

JRE was in a no-win situation with the question that was posed to him.

He reacted cautiously, but appropriately for someone on the eve of a competitive primary. If he gave a more nurturing response I would have found that sexist and more patronizing, not what he ended up saying. I wouldn't expect him to have been more touchy feely with someone like Giuliani, so why should he be that way with HC? So he gives a gender neutral, though appropriately competitive response and gets branded a misogynist by some of the leading lights of the progressive movement. Disappointing.

[ Parent ]
White Knight Syndrome (0.00 / 0)
Come on, Matt.  As a lady of the left, I can assure you that it never occurred to Hillary to cry on the campaign trail until Mark Penn suggested it to her.  She used the Edwards buzz line "this is personal to me" after trying and failing to co-opt Obama's "change" message.  Watch the video again - it's laden with poll-tested buzz words and catch phrases meant to appeal to Obama's and Edwards' demographics.  It's also meant to inspire men, particularly progressive, guilt-ridden men into seeing softness where savvy women would see calculation.

I guarantee you that not one solitary tear could cut a deep ravine down Clinton's pancake make-up without a focus group's permission.  That is exactly the problem she has always had with women - many of us see her as manipulative and calculating - exactly those personality features, which society does its best to engender in women and which feminism has tried to eradicate in women.  There's no need to cry.  And if there were, wouldn't  it have been for the million Iraqis killed or the 3,700 American troops killed?  No, we finally see tears from the farcical Iron Lady only when it looks like she's about to lose an election.  In that case, if the tears really are genuine, she's revealing a shallow character and a self-centeredness that is hardly worth your chivalric defense.  To be sure, yours is a chivalric impulse (which is like so hot, Matt, really), not a feminist critique. 

Rudy is a Tyrant

Get over it (4.00 / 1)
And how the heck can you guarantee any of that? You work for the campaign?

Just watched the video.

Looked like a perfectly sincere and yes briefly emotional response.
I don't subscribe to the conspiracy theorists that think it was a planted question or a planned response. Bull.

First she's cold and calculating, then she's too emotional, then oh wait the emotion was actually cold and calculating. Oh, and shallow. Please.

Edwards lost my support today BTW.

And this was the most humanizing moment I've seen from Clinton. She's put up with 15 yrs of non-stop vicious attacks and her voice wavers for 3 seconds? Get over it people. She's a human being.

[ Parent ]
I'd have to agree (0.00 / 0)
Clinton's campaign has been nothing but disciplined. Now you want me to believe this was a spontaneous response? Sorry, I'm not buying it.

That said, a woman who was not a Hillary supporter did react positively to the video. The "how do you do it all?" question is something women really sympathize with.

[ Parent ]
Wait for the tears from Obama (4.00 / 1)
....when he gets the same treatment, in the general, as Al Smith did in 1928.

Al Smith was a broken man after what he experienced in his election.

When forced to choose between Obama and Saint John McCain, there's no question which way the currently-adoring media will break.


Open Left Campaigns



Advanced Search

Powered by: SoapBlox