The Economist—Democratic politics is all about Bill—again

Posted by Kendall Harmon

The biggest damage is to Mrs Clinton's claim that she will be an effective chief executive. Mr Clinton's frenetic role in the campaign surely prefigures the role he will play in the White House, advising here, meddling there, and using the access to top-secret information that his position as an ex-president affords him to second-guess the most sensitive decisions. Who will hold Mr Clinton accountable for his actions? How will the White House function with an ex-president and a vice-president vying for influence? (One insider once termed the “three-headed” relationship between the Clintons and Al Gore a “rolling disaster”.) The Clintonians like to describe their bosses as complementary figures who act as “force multipliers”. But in the 1990s what actually got multiplied was confusion.

All this will be material for the Republican attack machine. By most reckonings the Republicans should be doomed. But the Clintons' tactics are alienating blacks and young people. The Clintons are in the process of doing the impossible: making the 2008 election a referendum on them, rather than on the Republicans. And the Republicans are inching towards nominating their one candidate, Mr McCain, who has broad popular appeal. If what ought to be a stroll in the park in November becomes a real fight, then the Democrats will know who to blame.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Economics, PoliticsUS Presidential Election 2008

4 Comments
Posted January 26, 2008 at 6:07 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]



1. The_Elves wrote:

He fell asleep during a service in honour of Martin Luther King at a church in Harlem (“Bill has a dream”, quipped the New York Post).

Just GOTTA love the NY Post!!!  LOL! LOL!  grin

January 26, 7:13 pm | [comment link]
2. Ad Orientem wrote:

I feel odd making this observation since my politics are more than slightly monarchist.  However I live in a country which has chosen to be a constitutional republic.  Given that fact, I think it is not healthy to have a period of more than a quarter century where the republic’s head of state will have had one of two last names.

It’s time for a change.  And that means no more Bush’s or Clintons for a long time please God.

If only Hamilton had lived…

January 26, 7:29 pm | [comment link]
3. Tom Roberts wrote:

2- but Andy Jackson would have had his day, even with Alex Hamilton alive. There are great men, but there are also great trends.

January 26, 8:38 pm | [comment link]
4. Tom Roberts wrote:

My historical take on this is that “you have to watch out for what you ask”. In the Clintons’ case of zealous pursuit of the Presidency again, two aphorisms encapsulating the 1990’s are coming true again, due only to Bill’s proximity to power.

1. It’s all about Bill Clinton.

2. It’s not about sex.

January 26, 8:41 pm | [comment link]
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