It is way too early. We've got a Congressional election to get through. And Obamacare implementation. And more datapoints on the decline of Obama's America - more from Putin, Egypt, Syria, and al Queda; more from the unemployment lines, the NSA, and the IRS. But let's take a moment to look over the horizon to the potential for a better day. Let's respond to the increasing rumble of the inevitability of President Hillary.
The Huffington Post, NBC, the Daily Beast, and The New York Times, are all full of articles about the transition from the first African American president to the first woman president. While claiming to be undecided, Hillary has organized her Ready for Hillary PAC, lined up promotional miniseries on CNN and NBC, embarked on a series of political speeches around the country, and strenghtened her support from President Obama. All this while settling in with her staff (and daughter Chelsea) at Bill's $200 million per year Clinton Foundation.
It is way too early, but we already have a Stop Hillary PAC running ads of her career from Whitewater to Benghazi, and Republican National Chairman Reince Priebus threatening to ostracize CNN and NBC if they continue with their infomertial plans. Others, like the America Rising PAC will soon add their anti-Hillary voices. No other Democrat can raise as much Republican money as can Hillary.
There will be plenty of time to evaluate every nuance of Hillary's campaign: the absence of serious Democratic challengers (but where was Obama in 2007?); the availability of the machine which elected Bill Clinton and propelled carpetbagger Hillary to the Senate from New York; the attraction of a woman in a country where women represent a majority of voters; Obama's payback for Bill's convention speech.
In a field of weak Democratic opponents (Joe Biden? Really?), it may be a good strategy to preempt the donors, political operatives, and media; however, there are a few major obstacles on the way back to the White House:
1. Hillary has never accomplished anything of note - in Arkansas, in the Senate, or as Secretary of State. She will have a balancing act in blaming Obama, but during her tenure things got worse with Russia, Israel, the Arab countries, and Iran, and little good happened with China, India, the European Union, or Latin America. Wikileaks and the NSA scandal have had major adverse impactos on our ability to conduct foreign policy with hardly a peep from the Secretary of State. Benghazi is just the frosting on the cake.
2. She shares the corruption of Bill's early years. Feminists may foregive her tolerance of Gennifer Flowers, Monica Lewinsky, and others, but Whitewater and Vince Foster will resurface despite claims that they are "old news". Newer news: the Clinton Foundation has been full of mismanagement, cronyism, and conflicts of interest - and that's the assessment of the home town New York Times.
3. She has made a lot of enemies along the way. We won't really know which are the most important until they show up.
From a Republican perspective Hillary might actually be good news. Tactically, it will be helpful to know early who to focus on. After eight years of economic malaise and disappointment with Obama from the Right and the Center, voters will be ready for a president who can propose answers for the future, not a third term for Bill. It isn't so much about Hillary's age (69 in 2016) as it is about the baggage. And that is heavy.
This week's bonus video is a continuation of the Hillary theme - the opinion of Charles Krauthammer.
bill bowen - 8/16/13