As I read some excerpts from Hillary Clinton’s What Happened book, I rolled my eyes. This is not a critique on the book. This is a critique of the myriad of reasons posited for not understanding her loss and her supporters need to figure out. Let’s put aside the electoral college issue. If we had no electoral college, she would be president despite the psychotic 2016 campaign that caused many of us PTSD. More important, if Hillary and the Democratic National Committee (DNC) do not fully own up to their blame in this then we should expect another four years of Trump or his successor should Mueller’s investigation end in impeachment. Hillary is by no means a victim of the election. She orchestrated a shrewd campaign, aided by the DNC which led to her demise because they collectively decided that come hell or high water, voters be damned, that she was going to the 2016 candidate before the primary began. They ignored warning signs that showed a strong dislike for her from the democratic base. She wonders why? Well, you appeared elitist, aloof, dismissive of millennials and Black Lives Matters (BLM), and seemed out of touch with the reality of what people were going through, especially the working and middle class. I am all for girl power and cannot wait for a woman to become president, but Hillary and the DNC decided that she was to be that woman. What went wrong: (1) a totally dismissive attitude of Hillary and the DNC to acknowledge the voting disenfranchisement of millennials and BLM; (2) HRC campaign tactics used against Obama in 2008 employed against Bernie in 2016; and (3) failing to learn from 2008.
Before the pantsuit nation gets a wedgy, I was a Bernie supporter for the primary but voted for Hillary in the general election. In 2007, I was a Hillary supporter. She was a no-nonsense, intelligent, seasoned politician. Hillary seemed to have it all. Surely, she would be the first woman president of the United States. I loved Barack Obama too. Obama’s lack of experience held me back. I thought he should get another term in the Senate before making his presidential bid. I figured a Clinton-Obama administration would be perfect and set the Democrats up for an Obama presidency once Hillary left office. Democrats making history back to back. Unfortunately, once Hillary noticed Obama gaining popularity and electoral votes, she engaged in a smear campaign I thought only the Republicans would dare start. The election was hers for the taking. When she stooped to mudslinging and fanning the flames that Obama was a Muslim and not born in America, I departed company with Team Hillary. Lies that are still perpetuated against President Obama sprang from her camp.
Apparently, Hillary had not done a “lessons learned” from 2008 before embarking on her 2016 bid because the same tactics employed against Obama in 2008 were used against Bernie in 2016. Therefore, I am at a loss to understand her feeling burned by the Bernie bros.
SUPER-PREDATOR & BLACK LIVES MATTERS
Hillary and Bill’s dismissive attitude of “you don’t know what you’re talking about, let me not acknowledge you” was a huge mistake. Nobody puts baby (BLM) in the corner! In 2008, Hillary touted her white support over Obama. Now in 2016 she wants the black vote, but turned her back on an issue so central to being black in America that Colin Kaepernick is still unemployed for protesting it, police brutality. First, the media claimed that she never said it – the super-predator “myth.” Then she issues a lukewarm apology after both she and Bill talked down to BLM. When I wrote, Why Hillary’s Super-Predator Comment Matters, I am sure Hillary supporters dismissed me too. When your good intentions harm someone, you don’t tell the injured party to forget they are harmed because you meant well. Nor do you callously dismiss them when they call on you to own up to the harm caused. Karma bit her in the rear with that “deplorables” comment.
MILLENNIALS, BERNIE & THE DNC
Asma Khalid noted, “Millennials are now as large of a political force as Baby Boomers according to an analysis of U.S. census data from the Pew Research Center …Both generations are roughly 31 percent of the overall electorate.” Many Bernie supporters were millennials. I recall in college, voter registration drives were massive, especially among Democrats. Democrats have a bad habit of being short sighted. You would have thought they learned from the Obama-Clinton 2008 primary. In November 2007, Hillary “tells CBS’ Katie Couric that she will be the Democratic nominee, and that the nomination will be sewn up by midnight on Feb. 5, 2008 (Super Tuesday).” She was very dismissive of Obama and his chances. Obama’s base and campaign foot soldiers were college students and millennials. Hillary ignored this group in 2008 and again in 2016. Like Obama, Bernie’s base was also college students and millennials. Hillary was also dismissive of Bernie and his chances. Had the DNC mobilized voter registration across college campuses, it would have been a death nail to Hillary securing the nomination. Hillary painted Bernie as some weird dreamer hippie out of touch. But the millennials start googling and are like, Wait! Bernie was getting arrested protesting civil rights while you were supporting Barry Goldwater, a Republican. No matter what Bernie told his supporters, many millennials were heartbroken from his loss reinforcing the long-held view that “my vote doesn’t count.” After the primary, many refused to vote. I did not agree with this action. And let’s be clear, Bernie Bros included a lot of women. Bernie had a diverse following that Hillary never fully embraced before or after the primary.
I have young relatives in the military. I was shocked to learn that young millennials in the military that voted Obama were not fond of Hillary, not for the reasons previously mentioned. The whole Benghazi handling put a sour taste in their mouths and they blamed her. Again, Hillary played aloof elitist and missed the boat. She should have been reaching out to military millennials. They liked Obama, but feared that she would lead them into more wars.
The DNC is reorganizing, but it still seems the old order is in place. Millennials are the new voting bloc. If the Democrats want to see victory during 2018 midterms and in 2020 they need to get their hand out of the sand, stop picking people from the Clinton/Obama era and tap into the millennials – who are fond of Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren.
No Hillary did not say she placed some of the blame at Obama for not speaking up about the Russian hacking. By the time that came about, nothing was going to save her from her own hubris. Hillary did not campaign in certain states, ones that voted Democrat for both Obama terms. As usual, Hillary figured she had it like that so she did not bother. I met people who volunteered and they said they were all set to go to do door to door campaigning in certain states and shortly before HRC campaign canceled trips. Hillary assumed and lost blue states. That more than Obama addressing Russian hacking led to defeat. And speaking of placing some blame, Bill Clinton gave the Republican presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, tips to prepare for debates against Obama in 2012. Bill Clinton, a Democrat, advised the Republican candidate for president on how to win a debate against an incumbent Democrat president! Hillary should have had a come to Jesus with Bill. Instead, she’s trying to place blame at Obama’s door. Honey hush! Or, as the millennials say, you can miss me with that.
EMAILS & DONNA BRAZILE
Again, another example of not learning from the mishaps of 2008. In 2007, Sarah Palin was roasted for using yahoo email to conduct state business. When Hillary’s email problem initially surfaced, I am shaking my head. Seriously, Hill? WTF. It was such an amateur mistake, especially when everyone knew she would run in 2016. Then we had another Bill issue leading to the re-opening of the emails. Recall his tarmac hello with Loretta Lynch. And let’s not forget the Donna Brazile fiasco. Hillary is an intellectual and seasoned politician. Why in the name of all things holy did this happen, especially when debating someone who does not know or care about history, politics, or diplomacy?
My dad would say, “I don’t care if you’re 99.9% right, for that .1% that you’re wrong, you gotta own up to it.” At what point will Hillary and the DNC own up to the fact that they dropped the ball? It is time to move beyond Hillary and look to the 2018 mid-term elections and 2020. Instead, we are still talking about Hillary and her regrets.
Hillary acted like the self-designated “protector of the realm” when people wanted a “breaker of chains.” Be boots on the ground showing millennials how to change the system using their numbers as a voting bloc to disrupt the political landscape. Ain’t nobody got time for this Don’t Cry for Me Argentina song and dance via this book when we got white supremacists walking with tiki torches in the streets and running folks over. May I suggest you have a sit down with Nekima Levy Pounds, candidate for mayor of Minneapolis. She’s been boots on the ground since Ferguson, Jamar Clark, Philando Castile, a professor, and lawyer, who just gave birth while on the campaign trail.
Hillary, you’ve had your woe is me moment. Now be a strong woman who empowers other women, especially younger women, to complete the mission. It is not about you. It does not end with you. How history will remember you will be based on what you do from this moment on. No more what happened. Get busy making sure 2016 does not happen again. Tell the DNC to stop politics as usual and tap into the heartbeat of millennials.