Screen shot of video showing Secret Service agents helping Hillary Clinton into SUV as she faints
No doubt about it, Hillary Clinton’s fainting episode in NYC today is big, big news. It was not that hot in the city today. The Washington Post‘s Chris Cillizza, who last week dismissed talk that her Labor Day coughing fit meant anything, nails why:
Coughing, I wrote, is simply not evidence enough of any sort of major illness that Clinton is assumed to be hiding. Neither, of course, is feeling “overheated.” But those two things happening within six days of each other to a candidate who is 68 years old makes talk of Clinton’s health no longer just the stuff of conspiracy theorists.
Whereas Clinton and her campaign could laugh off questions about her health before today, the “overheating” episode makes it almost impossible for them to do so. Not only has it come at a time when there was growing chatter — with very little evidence — that her health was a problem but it also happened at a 9/11 memorial event — an incredibly high-profile moment with lots and lots of cameras and reporters around.
Her campaign may well try to dismiss this story as nothing more than an isolated incident, meaning nothing. (Democrats were already pushing the story of George W. Bush fainting in 2002 after choking on a pretzel, via Twitter.)
But the issue is that Clinton kept reporters totally in the dark for 90 minutes after her abrupt departure from the 9/11 memorial service for a health-related matter. No reporter was allowed to follow her. (Clinton has resisted a protective pool for coverage because Donald Trump refuses to participate in one.) This is, yet again, the Clinton campaign asking everyone to just trust it. She got overheated! But she’s fine now!
Trust a Clinton? That’s a big ask under normal circumstances, and these are not normal circumstances. Look, I feel sorry for both candidates. They’re old people, and the campaign schedule they follow is grueling. It would be hard on anybody. But the presidency is also grueling, and now there is reason to wonder if Clinton is up to it.
Donald Trump got a lot out of referring to Jeb Bush as “low energy.” Just you wait now.
See it happen here: