Attacking Hillary: Let’s All Just Simmer Down

TPM Media put together a compilation of the Hillary “Smack-Down” that hit the air waves Sunday morning.  Good thing I had better things to do than to watch this whole thing, or I’d really have been turned off:


I tell ya, the Bill and Hillary thing is a tough nut to crack.  But if you think for one second you can call South Carolina a “bitter rebuke of the Clintons,” then you didn’t pay attention in Iowa and New Hampshire.  This thing isn’t over by a long shot, in fact, many are predicting (I think once again, prematurely) that even by the convention, things may not have settled into a victory for one camp.

But what do you say about the Clintons at this point?  Historically, I don’t think that they so much started the bitter politics of the Nineties up to the present day, so much as they were probably the one power couple on the Democratic side that could have stood up to it for as long as they did.

But now, with all the horse shit coming out of New Hampshire and South Carolina, it becomes increasingly difficult to respect them going forward.  It’s not just that what they’re doing is nasty politics, it also seems remarkably out of character in the way that it’s lousy politics.  Seriously, how many more times can you step on the toes of black voters in a given week or two?  Holy crap, Bill just got done comparing Barack Obama’s campaign to Jesse Jackson in a way that demeaned all three men in one statement.  How could he think that was a good idea?

And still, there is the media’s relentless disgust for the Clintons that makes me want to stand up for them.  The Clintons have so far run an awful campaign, once the heat was on, but they’re not Mr. and Mrs. Antichrist, for gods sakes.

As for Barack, does it concern me that he’s not being made to suffer more negative campaigning?  Does it bother me that Republicans will be much, much worse negative campaigners than the Clintons?  A little, yes.  More than one person out here in the blogosphere has suggested that Obama will whither under the attacks, that he’s already doing just that.  But the fact is that he has weathered the attacks and has managed to make them seem all the more negative, to the point of creating what may well have been an angry backlash against the Clintons.

I think, in other words, that Obama has raised a perception of and sensitivity to negative campaigning that transcends the usual tuning-out that happens among the electorate and turned that into determination.  At least, I hope that is true.

By Tommy Belknap

Owner, developer, editor of DragonFlyEye.Net, Tom Belknap is also a freelance journalist for The 585 lifestyle magazine. He lives in the Rochester area with his wife and son.