Poor, poor, poor Hillary. This was all supposed to be so easy. With the Democratic National Committee and chairperson Debbie Wasserman Schultz doing her bidding, Clinton was supposed to quietly waltz into this year’s Dem primaries with nary a worry in the world. After sitting idly by while Barack Obama took what was rightfully hers in 2008, having only a stint as Secretary of State as a consolation prize, this was now HER time. She was the CHOSEN ONE, dammit!
But, Bernie Sanders had to crash the coronation and fuck things up. He stubbornly refuses to go away, and as of Tuesday, he is leading in both Iowa and New Hampshire. His message is resonating across the demographic and ideological spectrum, leading to huge crowds at his rallies. On top of that, he picked up a huge endorsement from progressive group MoveOn this week.
However, the one thing Hillary figured she had going for her was support from the White House, considering her time in the Obama Administration. On the campaign trail, she’s been touting the President’s policies, letting Dem voters know that she’ll continue to press forward with much of what Obama has started. Unfortunately, both Obama and Vice President Joe Biden have kind of distanced themselves from her, content to let a closer than expected race play itself out.
Speaking to Meet the Press’s Chuck Todd on Sunday, White House Chief of Staff Dennis McDonough pointed out that POTUS will not endorse a candidate until after the primaries and a nominee has been selected. (Obama’s op-ed in the New York Times on gun control had pundits thinking the President was effectively endorsing Hillary while calling out Bernie on his stance.) At the same time, the President has said he will vote in Illinois’ primary on March 15th. So, he will vote for Bernie or Hillary, but will probably refuse to say who — sorry, Hillary — and won’t start campaigning for anyone until this summer. This makes Hillary a sad panda.
Biden also jumped onto the Hillary troll train. In an interview with CNN that aired Monday, Biden told Gloria Borger that Bernie had credibility when talking about the issue of income inequality. Hillary, eh, not so much. During a Tuesday morning appearance on NBC’s TODAY, Biden tried to ‘clarify’ his comments, but essentially said the same thing — Bernie has been talking about it for years while Clinton’s just recently jumped on board.
Of course, one can point out that Biden was thinking about running as recently as October, and has said he’s regretted not getting into the race every day. He would have been the establishment/Obama successor candidate that Hillary is currently running as, and he likely is taking not-too-subtle jabs at Clinton in a kinda passive-aggressive.
And the same can be said of Obama. Let’s face it, he probably still harbors some ill will towards the Clintons over the vicious 2008 Democratic primary, where Bill made some quasi-racist comments about him in South Carolina while Hillary labeled Obama an “elitist” who you couldn’t trust with a 3 AM call to the White House.
So, yeah, the White House is now letting Clinton twist in the wind while she sees Bernie nipping at her heels. If Clinton perseveres, they’ll get behind her and Obama will make some speeches on the campaign trail. If Bernie shocks the world and wins the nomination, sorta like Obama did in 2008, then the administration can get behind Sanders without the awkwardness of a previous Hillary endorsement hanging over its head.
Poor, poor, poor Hillary.
Image via WENN