Just over ten years ago, on January 27, 1998, Hillary Clinton informed America that a “vast right-wing conspiracy . . . has been conspiring against my husband since the day he announced for president.” One of the accomplishments of her own presidential campaign has been to bring into existence a vast left-wing conspiracy. Every day, one more leftist commentator looks on the Clinton campaign tactics and unleashes a volley of dismay and scorn.
Jonathan Chait, Michael Tomasky and Robert Reich have been prominent critics. Ezra Klein now weighs in with the kind of fury that would play well on FoxNews: It’s “getting a bit annoying to watch [the Clintons] discover brand new principles as soon as they become politically useful. I never, not once, heard anyone in the Hillary Camp say the real test for the candidate was how they did in huge, heavily-Democratic states like California and New York. Rather, before she lost a bunch of small states, I kept hearing that her experience in upstate New York would assure her the Missouris of the world, which Democrats needed. I never, not once, heard anyone in the Clinton campaign denigrate the representative nature of caucuses when it [looked] like they might win Iowa. Never, not once, did they respond to a poll showing Hillary in the lead by saying, ‘hey, it’s just a caucus, and basically undemocratic.’ Now, of course, they want caucuses not to count. Fine, that’s politics. Similarly, when the DNC decided to strip Michigan and Florida of their delegations, I never, not once, heard the Clinton campaign stand up [to] stop the whole thing from happening. They stayed silent, and even assented to the DNC’s decision. Clinton’s campaign manager released a statement saying, ‘We believe Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina play a unique and special role in the nominating process, and we believe the DNC’s rules and its calendar provide the necessary structure to respect and honor that role.’
He concludes, “If it’s cynical, risky politics that brings a lighted match and a can of gas near the Democratic coalition, it should be named as such, and its consequences understood, and it should become part of the complex calculus we’re all building to help us understand these campaigns.”