The collateral damage continues to mount in Hillary Clinton’s ongoing campaign to shed any responsibility for blowing an easily winnable election. Yesterday, excerpts from What Happened showed her targeting Bernie Sanders for sexism, and by implication Barack Obama too. More excerpts reported today by Politico take aim at one of the Democratic Party’s most sympathetic figures — and her supposedly long-term friend — for his post-election criticism:
Clinton has made a handful of public appearances since the election, and has said that she takes responsibility for her defeat, while still spreading blame widely on former FBI Director James Comey, Russian President Vladimir Putin, and her rival for the Democratic ticket, Sen. Bernie Sanders.
In the book, she also dings former Vice President Joe Biden, saying he’s thrown unfair criticism her way.
“Joe Biden said the Democratic Party in 2016 ‘did not talk about what it always stood for — and that was how to maintain a burgeoning middle class,’” Clinton writes, according to CNN. “I find this fairly remarkable, considering that Joe himself campaigned for me all over the Midwest and talked plenty about the middle class.”
I’m pretty sure Biden knows he talked about the middle class. What Biden found “fairly remarkable” was that he was the only Democrat who made that a habit. Hillary kept talking about her stature as the first woman nominated by a major party for the presidency, and the necessity of breaking glass ceilings, and lots and lots of identity-politics rhetoric. Her incessant attacks on these points created a high degree of animus among voters who didn’t like being called “deplorable,” and being assumed to be racists, sexists, and idiots.
That’s what Biden noted after the election, but began to realize before it:
And so as he sat in his office one day in October and watched footage of a Donald Trump rally in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., not far from his childhood home, Biden sensed trouble.
“Son of a gun. We may lose this election,” Biden said, recalling his reaction during an interview in his West Wing office.
“They’re all the people I grew up with. They’re their kids. And they’re not racist. They’re not sexist. But we didn’t talk to them.”
Biden may have been talking to them, but … Biden wasn’t the candidate, nor the campaign. Surrogates can’t make up for “basket of deplorables” attitudes at the top of a campaign. The fact that Hillary Clinton thinks that she could outsource that to Biden while pandering to the social-justice warriors of Academia speaks volumes about why she lost the election. It makes the fact that she never showed up in Wisconsin an allegory as well as a direct fact of her loss. She couldn’t deign to meet the middle class and treat them with respect, so she sent a minion out to do it for her.
For those who can’t get enough of Hillary’s blamethrowing, she’ll appear on CBS’ Sunday Morning this weekend to discuss her What Happened memoirs. Note that venue well — she’s not going up against John Dickerson on Face the Nation, but opting for the soft touch with Jane Pauley instead. CBS announced that Pauley would discuss the 2016 election, James Comey, Trump, Russian hacking, and her campaign memoir. All those seem like topics better suited for a politically oriented talk show, but it seems that Hillary’s not up for that kind of scrutiny. Expect softballs, and expect Hillary to fumble them anyway.
Addendum: The publisher for Hillary Clinton’s spiritual adviser, Rev. Bill Shillady, announced that they will pull his book of supportive missives to Hillary from the bookshelves due to “extensive plagiarism.” Abingdon Press will destroy all unsold copies:
His book, “Strong for a Moment Like This,” compiled the emails that he and other pastors sent to Clinton every morning of her campaign. She read the morning emails, which contained a biblical passage, a short sermon and a prayer, throughout her grueling run for president.
Shortly before the book came out last month, CNN published the day-after email that Shillady sent on Nov. 9. Indiana pastor Matt Deuel recognized the words as nearly identical to his own and contacted CNN, which broke the news that the portion of the book was plagiarized on the day before it came out.
Clinton wrote the foreword for her pastor’s now-discredited book.
One has to wonder how this book got greenlighted in the first place, even absent the plagiarism. What literary value does this have, other than to demonstrate contributors’ fealty to Hillary?
Update: Bernie Sanders has some advice for Hillary after taking her flak this week — get over it:
“My response is that right now it’s appropriate to look forward and not backward,” Sanders told The Hill. …
Sanders said he wants to focus on the legislative challenges at hand and not debate who is to blame for President Trump’s stunning electoral upset of Clinton in November.
“Our job is to go forward,” he said.
Yeah, but at least he has a job.