SMART DIPLOMACY: Hillary Clinton’s remarks on Hitler seen as strategy.
SMART DIPLOMACYTM UPDATE: Hillary walks back Putin-Hitler comparison.
SMART DIPLOMACYTM STRIKES AGAIN: Hillary Clinton: I’m Not Comparing Putin To Hitler, I’m Just Saying He’s Acting Like Hitler.
Mitch Daniels, the former Indiana governor and current Purdue University president, got himself in hot water back in October for giving a speech to a Minnesota think tank. Not that anyone objects to Daniels making speeches in general; indeed, it comes with being a university president. In this case, however, the venue for the speech was the Center of the American Experiment, a conservative organization. And in the eyes of Indiana’s cultural elites, that made all the difference. . . .
What would mainstream academics say if a former governor used the “platform” of a public university to promote politically divisive “green-energy” policies? Actually, there’s no need to speculate: it’s already happened. In 2011, Bill Ritter, the former Democratic governor of Colorado, became head of Colorado State University’s Center for the New Energy Economy, an organization bankrolled by Democratic Party donors. The express purpose of the center is to lobby state politicians in Colorado and elsewhere to adopt green-energy mandates. On top of that, Ritter has publicly endorsed Hillary Clinton for president in 2016. Yet neither Colorado State faculty nor local media seem to have uttered a word in protest about the former governor’s overtly political activities. Imagine that.
Likewise, when former senator Bob Kerrey took the helm of the New School in New York, he made no pretense of steering clear of politics. In 2009, he gave a public speech urging Congress to pass the ill-fated “cap-and-trade” legislation promoted by President Obama. Kerrey argued that the climate-change bill was a “moral” imperative, and even compared it with 1960s civil rights legislation. How much criticism did that speech generate on the left? None.
One wonders what Daniels’s critics expected. When a university recruits a former governor to serve as its president, it is presumably because the university values the governor’s public-policy experience. And since universities are in the teaching business, why should anyone object to a university president sharing the hard-won insights that he gained in office?
Alternatively, they’re in the indoctrination business, and don’t want to send mixed messages.
If you listen to the chattering class in Washington, D.C., Hillary Clinton is a virtual certainty for the 2016 Democratic nomination, and the front-runner in the next presidential race.
But in private, rumors persist that the former Secretary of State may not even be capable of making it to Iowa and New Hampshire. Clinton, these skeptics often say, will not run for president again because of health concerns.
Even if Hillary can’t run, it’s in the interest of the Clintons to preserve the appearance of inevitability as long as possible as that keeps the money and respect flowing. The interests of the Democratic Party, however, are otherwise.
THEY DON’T WANT YOU TO SEE THEM, BECAUSE THEY MAKE HILLARY LOOK BAD: Politico’s Mike Allen: Thousands of Docs Being Withheld At Clinton Library. What other reason could there be? If they made Hillary look good, you’d know about them.
USA TODAY: Does A Hillary/Univision Deal Cross A Line? “One wonders whether a TV network should partner with a possible presidential candidate.”
WISCONSIN SCANDALS THE PRESS NEVER CARED ABOUT:
By the way, 3 years ago today, in the Wisconsin protests, which included teachers who were calling in sick to absent themselves from the classroom, doctors stood on a street corner under a sign that read “I’m a doctor/Need a note?” They were real doctors, putting their names on notes that the protesters could use to excuse their absence from work.
When lefty politicians or groups break the law, the press’s attitude is “politics ain’t beanbag.” But that forbearance doesn’t extend to Republicans. The reason for this is that the press is largely made up of Democratic operatives with bylines. Plus, from the comments:
Ho-hum another anti-GOP hack job from the WAPO. How ordinary.
Meanwhile, no curiosity about the IRS and Obamas ongoing violations of the 1st, 4th and 5th Amendments of the Constitution, as well as usurping the legislature.
It’s interesting to watch the press try to do oppo-research and battlespace-prep on every GOP figure who gets mentioned. These are the same people who told us that looking into Obama’s background — or lack of actual accomplishments — was racist, and that looking into Hillary’s background — or lack of actual accomplishments — is sexist.
GOV. SCOTT WALKER ON HILLARY: Throughout her adult life she has been a product of Washington.
WES PRUDEN: Hillary Clinton’s War On Women.
Kathleen Willey, who was a prominent Democratic volunteer in the first Clinton campaign in 1992, has resurrected her accusation — never refuted — that when she accepted an invitation to call on Bubba at the White House she got no help in getting a job, but “nothing short of serious sexual harassment.”
Mrs. Willey told interviewer Aaron Klein on WABC radio in New York that she’s bringing up the story now because Hillary was Bubba’s enabler, and manipulated the response to the sexual scandals that defined the Clinton years. Hillary, she says, has never been the friend of women she pretends to be.
Nope. She smeared and intimidated ‘em whenever they got in the way.
Hmm. Nobody minded talking about Mitt Romney’s much more distant past.
Of course Clinton’s recent experiences are relevant to a presidential run. But so are her actions in the 90s, the 80s and even the 70s. It’s not ancient history; it reveals something about who Clinton was and still is. And re-examining her past is entirely consistent with practices in recent campaigns.
In the 2012 presidential race, for example, many in the press were very interested in business deals Mitt Romney made in the 1980s. In the 2004 race, many journalists were even more interested in what George W. Bush did with the Texas Air National Guard in 1968, as well as what John Kerry did in Vietnam that same year. And in 2000, a lot of journalists invested a lot of time trying to find proof that Bush had used cocaine three decades earlier.
So by the standards set in coverage of other candidates, Clinton’s past is not too far past.
That’s especially true because there will be millions of young voters in 2016 who know little about the Clinton White House. Americans who had not even been born when Bill Clinton first took the oath of office in 1993 will be eligible to vote two years from now. They need to know that Hillary Clinton has been more than Secretary of State.
Those voters need to know, for starters, that Mrs. Clinton once displayed incredible investment skills. In 1978 and 1979, when her husband was attorney general and then governor of Arkansas, she enlisted the help of a well-connected crony to invest $1,000 in the highly volatile and risky cattle futures market. Several months later, she walked away with $100,000 — a 10,000-percent profit. Cynics thought the well-connected crony who executed the trades might have paid her the profits from good trades and absorbed the losses from bad ones, but Mrs. Clinton insisted that she developed her investing acumen by reading the Wall Street Journal.
New voters also need to learn about Mrs. Clinton’s checkered history as a lawyer and the game of hide-and-seek she played with federal prosecutors who subpoenaed her old billing records as part of the Whitewater investigation. After two years of defying subpoenas and not producing the records, she suddenly claimed that they had been in a closet in the White House residence all along.
New voters also need to learn about Mrs. Clinton’s purge of the White House travel office, which was done to steer business to another Clinton crony. There’s no doubt she directed the 1993 firings of long-time White House employees although she testified under oath that she did not. Years later, prosecutors concluded that “Mrs. Clinton’s sworn testimony … is factually inaccurate.”
And the Lewinsky scandal, in which Hillary helped attack Lewinsky, and numerous other women like Kathleen Willey and Paula Jones, in order to protect Bill. War on women? On the inconvenient women, certainly.
Also: Why Monica Lewinsky is relevant: Liberals have redefined sexual harassment. “Rand Paul has cagily been reminding us of the fact that Bill Clinton is a sexual predator. That DOES matter now, because it demonstrates just how painfully hypocritical democrats are with regard to the treatment of women. Clinton is a sexual predator and Hillary was his enabler.”
Plus: The Vetting of Hillary Already Labeled ‘Sexist’ in the Media. Makes sense. After all, vetting Obama was supposed to be racist, or something.
RESTRICTED ACCESS: Clinton Foundation keeps tight leash on papers from Bill Clinton’s tenure as governor. “An extensive collection of papers related to Bill and Hillary Clinton’s years in the Arkansas governor’s mansion remains under tight control at a public library in Little Rock, with access restricted by the Clinton Foundation. . . . The documents could provide new insight into the early chapter of the Clintons’ political careers, as reporters take a second look at Hillary Clinton’s past in light of the information contained in the public materials of the Diane Blair collection.” That’s why they’re keeping them locked up.
MATTHEW CONTINETTI: The Golden Egg: The Hillary Papers And The Death Of Mainstream Media. “That a conservative online newspaper could have understood the significance of the archive, and actually examined its public contents, seemed too much an embarrassment for the staffs of the major newspapers and networks and magazines to bear. By being the first to report on the papers, the Free Beacon exposed the inanity and irrelevance of the mainstream media. We beat them. And they are sore losers.”
KIRSTEN POWERS THINKS THAT RAND PAUL IS ENGAGING IN A “misguided war on Hillary.” This characterization is dumb for two reasons. First, if you’re thinking of running in 2016, waging a “war” on the favored Democratic nominee is hardly misguided. Second, what Paul is doing is making it painful for Democrats to bring up their “war on women” crap (which Powers’ column echoes) instead of giving them a free pass. If it becomes painful enough for them to do that, they’ll abandon the tactic. Even a flatworm is smart enough to turn away from pain.
I PLAN TO SUE BIG SPOON: Trial Lawyers Plot To Sue Food Industry Over Obesity.
Lawyers are pitching state attorneys general in 16 states with a radical idea: make the food industry pay for soaring obesity-related health care costs.
It’s a move straight from the playbook of the Big Tobacco takedown of the 1990s, which ended in a $246 billion settlement with 46 states, a ban on cigarette marketing to young people and the Food and Drug Administration stepping in to regulate.
MARC CAPUTO: Hillary Clinton’s Univision ties met with near-silence in media. “The Spanish-language network, which broadcasts from Doral, has remarkably close ties with Clinton — from the way the media giant covers immigration to the financial backing of its top leader to a new initiative between the network and the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation. Barely a peep from the press, though. . . . Clinton’s face is featured in five of seven slides on the Univision website promoting the partnership with the foundation’s ‘Too Small to Fail’ initiative. Taking no press questions at the event, Clinton was featured in the type of feel-good classroom setting that politicians on the campaign trail crave.”
“SMART DIPLOMACY” UPDATE: Is Syria Now a Direct Threat to the United States? The militancy nurtured by the civil war appears to be spreading—just as diplomacy falters. “Over the last two weeks, Obama administration officials have signaled—sometimes intentionally, sometimes not—that a worst-case scenario is emerging in Syria. Peace talks are at a virtual standstill. An emboldened President Bashar al-Assad has missed two deadlines to turn over his deadliest chemical weapons. And radical extremists who have fought in Syria are carrying out attacks in Egypt and allegedly aspire to strike the United States as well.” As I’ve noted before, John Kerry’s role is to make Hillary Clinton’s unimpressive tenure at State look better by comparison. So far, he’s fulfilling it perfectly.
THEY HAVE LEARNED NOTHING AND FORGOTTEN NOTHING: Clintons Still Hate Obama-Supporting Democrats.
Forgive and forget? Not Bill and Hillary.
A system of political rewards and punishments devised by the political power couple set aside “a special circle of Clinton hell . . . for people who had endorsed [President] Obama,” according to “HRC,” a new book by Politico former White House bureau chief Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes of The Hill.
The most helpful Clintonistas were rated “1” under the Clintons’ rating system, while turncoat former allies, such as John Kerry, received “7’s.”
The Clinton camp would later “joke about the fates of the folks they felt had betrayed them,” the book said.
“Bill Richardson: investigated; John Edwards: disgraced by scandal; Chris Dodd: stepped down; . . . Ted Kennedy: dead,” an aide quipped, according to the book.
Ready for Hillary?
THE HILLARY PAPERS: Archive of ‘closest friend’ paints portrait of ruthless First Lady.
ANNALS OF THE .001 PERCENT: The Billionaires Start Lining Up Behind Hillary Clinton.
IRS SCANDAL UPDATE: Obama denies any wrongdoing on IRS, Benghazi. “President Obama said Sunday there was “not even a smidgen” of corruption in the IRS targeting of conservative groups, and that his team did not try to deceive the nation about the terrorist attack in Benghazi to aid his reelection bid in 2012. In a contentious interview with Bill O’Reilly of Fox News before the Super Bowl, the president said he doesn’t remember meeting with former IRS chief Douglas Shulman during any of Mr. Shulman’s 157 visits to the White House during his first term.”
This reminds me of something: “Number of times that Hillary Clinton, providing testimony to Congress, said that she didn’t remember, didn’t know, or something similar: 250.”
APPARATCHIK DAVID GREGORY tries to drag Rand Paul into the “War on Women,” but it doesn’t work.
Gregory tries to drag Paul back to the question — whether the GOP should be talking about “women’s health, women’s bodies.” And Paul goes through the same tactics: cooling things off with a joke (“I try never to have discussions of anatomy unless I’m at a medical conference”), saying that the whole subject is “dumbed down” and political, and observing that way women are doing well. He adds another compliment, that the women he knows are “conquering the world,” not complaining about how “terrible” and “misogynist” it is. He never says one thing about birth control, women’s bodies, or the unfortunate locutions of other members of his party.
So that’s how Paul is going to deal with the media efforts to lure Republicans into playing the Democrats’ war on women game.
There are a number of other topics in the interview, but Gregory puts another woman topic at the end. He’s got an interview from Vogue in which Rand Paul joked about the polls that show Hillary Clinton beating every GOP opponent, and Paul’s wife Kelley burst in with: “Bill Clinton’s relationship with Monica Lewinsky should complicate his return to the White House, even as first spouse. I would say his behavior was predatory, offensive to women.”
Gregory asks if Paul thinks that “will be fair game and an appropriate part of a campaign” against Hillary. Paul says:
Well, you know, I mean, the Democrats, one of their big issues is they have concocted and said Republicans are committing a war on women.
If our opponents are going to do gender politics, he implies, it’s fair for us to do it too.
One of the workplace laws and rules that I think are good is that bosses shouldn’t prey on young interns in their office.
Good. Sexual harassment law is serious, and it matters.
Well, only when it’s convenient to the narrative. But every time this happens, it’s fair to bring up Clinton, Filner, Weiner, John Edwards, et al. Make it unpleasant for them, spoil their narrative, and they’ll stop. But read the whole thing.
UPDATE: Reader Michael Schrage writes: “Good God, man! Why are you leaving out Spitzer?” There are so many, it’s hard to keep track. Say, speaking of Spitzer, did you know that Ashley Dupre got married?
TODAY IS THE ONE-YEAR ANNIVERSARY of Hillary’s “What difference at this point does it make?”
JAKE TAPPER: Christie Got More Scrutiny for BridgeGate Than Hillary Clinton Did for Benghazi. Well, yeah.
OF COURSE SHE DOES: Hillary Has An Enemies List.
IT’S A WALK-IN CLOSET, AND IT’S FULL: Hillary’s skeleton stampede.
Even when her friends try to raise their voices in Hillary’s defense, what comes out is mostly static. The attempted whitewash by The New York Times of the hash she made of Benghazi only reminds everyone that she was asleep when the telephone rang at 3 o’clock in the morning.
NONSENSE. SHE’S INEVITABLE AND UNBEATABLE, JUST LIKE IN 2008. Why Dems Will Go Down With The S.S. Hillary.
CHRIS CHRISTIE LOOKING AS THUGGISH AS OBAMA. I suspect Hillary’s hand in this scandal’s appearance, but if true it indicates that Christie is actually a pretty small man. Of course, I suppose some GOP voters might like a guy who’d take petty revenge on Dems, Obama-fashion. Payback, you know.
TOM MAGUIRE: Obama Quit In Afghanistan. “So Obama was sending our young men and women off to a meat grinder with no real confidence in the likelihood of success. How like Lyndon Johnson.”
Plus: “Wow, Hillary’s opposition to the surge was political? Just like her support of the AUMF in 2002 was political. Which makes this genius wrong twice.”
ROGER SIMON: The Principal Enemy. “The principal enemy for the right and the center-right is now Hillary Clinton, the vastly favored frontrunner for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination. She is so far in front, in fact, that her competitors are not even in hailing distance. Hillary is the one who can consolidate and solidify the ‘gains’ of the Obama era in a way Obama himself never could because she is much more politically savvy — Obama was only savvy about getting elected, not governing — and has the backing of her even more politically savvy husband. Hillary is the one who can fully remake the United States into some version of Western Europe or, yet more frighteningly, China, a permanently stratified state capitalism governed by quasi-totalitarian bureaucrats. (We can call this system Soros Marxism, meaning a ruling clique of increasingly rich corporate czars employing a propagandistic veneer of socialist equality to keep the power and wealth for themselves.)”
NAOMI SCHAEFER RILEY: You can mark 2013 as the year feminism officially lost all meaning. “Which is why, by the way, it’s so puzzling to see women of a certain age still rallying around Hillary Clinton. If you’re Hillary or Huma Abedin or Lis Smith and you think that getting in with a slime-bucket is a good idea for your own life trajectory, well be our guest. But you could have accomplished that without feminism.”
Fifteen months after the Sept. 11 attack in Benghazi which killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans, the narrative of the attack continues to be shaped, and reshaped, by politicians and the press.
But a New York Times report published over the weekend has angered sources who were on the ground that night. Those sources, who continue to face threats of losing their jobs, sharply challenged the Times’ findings that there was no involvement from Al Qaeda or any other international terror group and that an anti-Islam film played a role in inciting the initial wave of attacks.
“It was a coordinated attack. It is completely false to say anything else. … It is completely a lie,” one witness to the attack told Fox News.
The controversial Times report has stirred a community that normally remains out of sight and wrestles with how to reveal the truth, without revealing classified information.
Fox News has learned that the attack on the consulate started with fighters assembling to conduct an assault.
“Guys were coming into the compound, moving left, moving right…and using IMT (individual movement techniques). … That’s not a spontaneous attack,” one special operator said.
“One guy was shooting, one guy was running. There are guys watching the gates. … The bosses on the ground were pointing, commanding and coordinating — that is a direct action planned attack.”
The community of operators in Libya that night and since includes the CIA, FBI, U.S. military, U.S. State Department and contractors working for the United States in a number of capacities. According to multiple sources on the ground that night, all the intelligence personnel in Benghazi before the attack and there now understand Al Qaeda is a significant threat in Libya.
They’ve been sitting on these guys hard to keep them quiet. Not sure it’ll work forever.
PAUL MIRENGOFF: The New York Times’ revisionist account of Benghazi. “I suspect that the Times story tells us more about Hillary Clinton’s assessment of the threat Benghazi poses to her likely 2016 run for president than it does about what happened in Benghazi. But to the extent that the Times story is viewed as shedding a new, different light on the Benghazi, perhaps the House should hold new hearings on the attack. . . . It also matters that the Obama administration’s account of the attack, per Susan Rice, was inaccurate even if one accepts the Times’ dubious reporting. The Times acknowledges this, though it chooses to characterize Rice’s account as just a ‘misstatement.’”
It’s all about trying to take the heat off Hillary. But we still don’t know why she refused repeated requests for more security in Benghazi. We also don’t know where Obama was that night. The Times doesn’t seem that interested in telling us, either.
WHO WILL LEAD THE LEFT beyond ObamaCare? Hillary, of course.
HEY, IF I HAD HILLARY — OR JOHN KERRY — AS A BOSS, I’D BE DRINKING MORE, TOO: “The Washington Times reports that the department spent about $180,000 on alcohol in September and $400,000 in all of 2012 — that’s three times the $118,000 spent in 2008.”
Obama administration officials insisted Monday that the tech team overseeing fixes to the troubled federal healthcare.gov website had resolved most of the errors plaguing the enrollment information being sent to insurers.
But insurers haven’t yet noticed a difference, according to a spokesman for industry lobbying group America’s Health Insurance Plans.
The files, known as “834″ forms, contain all of the relevant personal information for individuals who have signed up for health insurance, along with details on their plan choices. But these forms have been riddled with errors such as duplicated enrollments and spouses getting mixed up with children.
If these forms are not fixed, then insurers cannot smoothly process payments or ensure that individuals are enrolled in the right plans. This could be a nightmare come Jan. 1, when individuals start attempting to use their insurance. Some may show up at doctors’ offices thinking they are covered, but find out that they never were actually enrolled.
That’s almost a month away. They’re just trying to get through this news cycle.
UPDATE: Reader Sandi Drake writes: “How many Potemkin villages does it take to elect Hillary?” The big problem is that they’re different Potemkin villages than the ones Obama is erecting.
LARA LOGAN AND PRODUCER PUNISHED FOR ERRORS IN BENGHAZI STORY: “I’m not saying ’60 Minutes’ did a good job, but I’m skeptical of CBS’s motives here. What will it take to get the full story on Benghazi? Less suppression. More information. Why aren’t other reporters delving into this?” Because the message has been sent, and received.
This is about making sure people think twice — heck, ten times — before running an expose that makes Hillary look bad. Examples must be made, and if Lara Logan was in the wrong place at the wrong time, well, too bad. You can’t make an omelet without breaking a few eggs, and the pro-woman omelet that is a Hillary presidency demands a few sacrifices. Most of whom, as has been the pattern all along, will be women . . . .
Plus, from the comments: “Do we know yet where Obama was on the night of 9/11/12?” Nope.
SO, HOW’S THAT “SMART DIPLOMACY” STUFF WORKIN’ OUT? John McCain Thinks John Kerry Is a ‘Human Wrecking Ball.’ “Our whole policy in the Middle East—and it reverberates around the world, by the way—is in such disarray that I have never seen anything like it in my lifetime.” This is just more support for my theory that Kerry was appointed to make Hillary’s unimpressive tenure as Secretary of State look good by comparison.
SOMEBODY SHOULD ASK HILLARY ABOUT THIS: New Details Emerge About Injured Americans In Benghazi Attack.
Little is known about those who survived the Benghazi attack. The State Department confirmed in March, after multiple inquiries by Fox News, that a total of three diplomatic security agents, as well as a State Department contractor, were among the Americans injured during the terrorist assault which killed the two former SEALs, Ambassador Chris Stevens, and Foreign Service Officer Sean Smith.
The latest details are emerging as the House Intelligence Committee hears this week from contractors who were on the ground in Benghazi. Fox News has learned that they will give their accounts in closed, classified sessions on Wednesday and Thursday.
Two contractors were expected to appear Wednesday, and three former government contractors from the CIA annex are expected Thursday, according to sources familiar with the meetings.
THE HILL: Obama is boxed in by Bill Clinton.
President Obama scrambled to find a coherent response Tuesday after former President Clinton jammed the administration by saying it should keep its promise that people could keep their health insurance plans if they liked them.
The White House said Obama agreed with Clinton, but it offered no concrete idea on how that could be done.
Anxiety is growing among congressional Democrats, with the House poised to vote this week on Republican legislation to let insurers offer their old plans even if they don’t meet the new standards required by ObamaCare.
Whatever Bill Clinton’s motives — Republicans say he is distancing his wife, Hillary Clinton, from the ObamaCare debacle in advance of a White House run — his comments sharply intensified pressure on the president to change his signature law.
The White House opposes the pending House Republican bill but has no alternative yet. The quicker Obama comes up with an answer the better, House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said Tuesday.
The GOP should add a package including interstate insurance sales and Health Savings Accounts and assorted other improvements, and dare Dems to vote against it — or Obama to veto. He drove the car into the ditch; they’ll just be pulling it out.
PROF. JACOBSON: Thank you Elizabeth Warren boosters for reminding us how unappealing Hillary is. “No, the horse that just left the barn was the open acknowledgement of the progressive base that they don’t really want Hillary Clinton, they don’t really like her, and they feel the need for a breath of fresh air. Just like in 2008.”
A trio of intelligence reports sounded the warning — but were ignored by senior administration officials during the 2012 presidential campaign.
One report, compiled for the Irregular Warfare Support Program of the Pentagon’s Combating Terrorism Technical Support Office, predicted al-Qaida would take aggressive actions, including “selective terrorism, threats, intimidation and assassination.”
Well, that turned out to be true. Someone should ask Hillary about it.
NOAM SCHEIBER: Hillary’s Nightmare? A Democratic Party That Realizes Its Soul Lies With Elizabeth Warren. Also the GOP’s dream, I suspect. But I further suspect that Warren is being held in reserve in case Hillary somehow tanks early. They need someone to keep their “War On Women” schtick going for 2016. But, seriously: Who thinks that a first-term Senator from a blue state is going to beat Hillary in the Democratic Primary? I mean, like that’s going to happen.
BENGHAZI WHISTLEBLOWER’S BOOK MEMORYHOLED BY SIMON & SCHUSTER. Dollars to donuts, Hillary’s behind this.
REPUBLICANS SHOULD LAUNCH SPOILING ATTACKS: Bill Whalen: Get Ready For More “War On Women” Schtick As Hillary Ramps Up.
BOB MCMANUS: The Coming Cuomo-deBlasio War. “Cuomo’s in no danger of losing, of course, but there is the matter of dominance in the frog pond. (And what that might mean for the governor’s national ambitions, now overshadowed by Hillary Clinton.)”
NOPE. NOT AT ALL. NEXT QUESTION? Does Hillary Clinton’s Enthusiasm for Profit Extend Beyond Her Own Earnings? “The news that Hillary Clinton has earned what the Washington Post characterized as ‘close to $500,000′ for two recent speeches to Goldman Sachs is generating a certain amount of excitement.” So if Hillary’s elected, President Goldman Sachs The First will be replaced by President Goldman Sachs The Second. Guess I’ll need to redo this logo a bit if that happens.
CULTURE OF CORRUPTION: Hillary Clinton’s Lucrative Goldman Sachs Speaking Gigs. I think, at some point, you’ve made enough money. For the Clintons that point came a long time ago.
BYRON YORK: In health care mess, Obama reaps what he sowed.
Given the Affordable Care Act’s multiple crises in its first month of implementation, there’s no way President Obama and his fellow Democrats could be having a good time right now. But imagine if, instead of passing national health care legislation with only Democratic votes in 2009 and 2010, the president had won even a little Republican support for his health scheme. What if Obamacare had passed with ten GOP votes in the Senate and 30 or 40 in the House? If that had happened, the program would still be a mess, but Obama’s political problems would be far less serious.
If Obama had 10 Republican senators and 30 or 40 GOP representatives on his side, those lawmakers would be invested in the program’s success. And the GOP would be effectively divided on Obamacare, instead of solidly united. Some Republican lawmakers would likely favor approving additional money for implementing the troubled program, or perhaps favor holding off on vigorous oversight for a while, or at least not attacking 24-hours-a-day. Instead, Obama is facing a solid wall of Republican opposition.
There’s a story about First Lady Hillary Clinton’s attempt to pass a national health care plan back in 1993 and 1994. Daniel Patrick Moynihan, the old Democratic senator, told her that such far-reaching legislation had to pass with a really big majority to make sweeping changes in American life. “They pass 70-to-30, or they fail,” Moynihan told Clinton, according to a recent account by Todd Purdum in Politico.
Back in 1993, the Senate had 57 Democrats, meaning a major bill would have needed 13 Republican votes to pass Moynihan’s test. As it turned out, Clinton ignored Moynihan’s advice and her health care scheme went down in flames.
In 2009 and 2010, Barack Obama had an edge Clinton didn’t have: three more Democrats in the Senate. That 60-vote total gave Obama a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate and the opportunity to pass national health care with only Democratic votes. (With 256 Democrats in the House, passage there was a done deal.) But Obama’s Senate supermajority was fragile and fleeting. As it turned out, Democrats had the briefest of moments in which they could pass such a far-reaching law by themselves. And even then, the troubled supermajority was unable to deliver the kind of broad support Moynihan felt necessary for such consequential legislation.
The in-your-face behavior of the Obama/Pelosi/Reid team isn’t inspiring any charity from the opposition, either. Nor should it.
ON THE TRAIL: Meet The New Hillary.
WELL, THAT’S HILLARY’S MAJOR AREA OF EXPERTISE: State Department swept sex scandals under the rug. “Months after whistleblowers accused the State Department of covering up employee sex scandals, most of the cases have been ignored or swept under the rug, critics charge. Records show that staffers were given cushy jobs or allowed to retire, and watchdogs say the feds have hardly bothered to investigate since the shenanigans came to light this past summer.” Rules are for the little people.
TOM BEVAN: Why Does Kathleen Sebelius Still Have A Job?
Unlike the real world, where managers and employees are judged on results and held accountable for their performance, in Washington, D.C., loyalty and partisanship almost always come first. Accountability comes later, if it comes at all.
This happens in every administration, and President Obama’s is no different, as we’ve seen with the fatal mistakes made regarding the Fast & Furious gun program and in the assault on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi. Democrats, claiming to see these as partisan witch hunts designed to hurt the administration politically, circled the wagons. Obama stood loyally by Eric Holder and Hillary Clinton.
Loyalty is generally a good thing, in politics, as in life. But Kathleen Sebelius and her agency’s rollout of Obamacare is different.
Sebelius’ department had 3½ years to prepare to implement the Affordable Care Act. No one ever suggested that commandeering one-sixth of the American economy would be an easy task. (Many Republicans suggested the opposite and were dismissed as killjoys for their efforts.) But after the debacle of the last two weeks, liberals and Democrats—not conservatives or Republicans—should be calling for Sebelius’s head.
But they won’t.
MICKEY KAUS: Why Bill Clinton Doesn’t Sleep With Hillary, But In A Separate Hotel: “I buy that explanation, don’t you? Logistics over love! Good to see New York’s journalists strip away the veneer of BS and get to the truth of the matter.”
HILLARY TO HUMA: You Can Have Me, Or You Can Have Weiner, But Not Both.
MORE THAN I HATE THE ROMANS: How Much Does Hillary Losing in ’08 to Obama Still Sting for Bill? A Lot. “It must have really stung a year and a half later when those old media organizations he and his wife viewed as ‘de facto allies’ turned around and accused the Clintons of racism* in order to advance the Democrat candidate they much preferred over Hillary.”
HILLARY CLINTON’S PHOTO POLICY: If she doesn’t want you taking pictures, security will take your phone away and delete them. Touch my phone and you’ll be sorry, “security” or not. But how perfectly in tune with the spirit of Hillaryland. When you take someone’s phone away by force, that’s robbery. At the very least, this guy should sue — and try to press criminal charges against the security guy. Of course, if all they did is say delete the photo or you have to leave the event, then it’s just ordinary Clinton/Obama thuggishness.
WHEN REAL LIFE OUTPERFORMS CONSPIRACY THEORIES: The Clinton Foundation’s man in Cairo was also the Muslim Brotherhood’s. “How did the Clinton Foundation come to select El-Haddad to be its man in Cairo? We can only speculate. But we know that Huma Abedin (wife of Anthony Weiner) is one of Hillary Clinton’s most trusted advisers. We also know that both of Abedin’s parents have been major figures in the Muslim Brotherhood. The same is true of El-Hassad’s father — a top foreign policy adviser for ousted president Morsi, according to the Free Beacon. It’s a small world, about which Andy McCarthy has more to say.”
NO OFFICIAL MEMORIAL, BECAUSE THAT WOULD MAKE HILLARY LOOK BAD: State Department Staffers Forced To Mark Benghazi Anniversary On Their Own.
Staffers at State Department headquarters in Washington, D.C. held their own private ceremony Wednesday to commemorate the first anniversary of the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya after finding out the agency would not be organizing a formal, official memorial service.
The Sept. 11, 2012 Benghazi attack left four people dead, including the American Ambassador to Libya, Chris Stevens, and Sean Smith, an information management officer in the department’s foreign service.
A State Department staffer who worked with Stevens in Libya and asked not to be named told TPM there were about 20 to 25 staffers at the memorial. The informal gathering was put together after staffers inquired and learned the department would not be holding an official event to mark the anniversary.
It’s just sad.
WELL, HILLARY’S GONE NOW. OH, WAIT: Thomas Pickering: State Dept. Should Have Fired Employees Over Benghazi Debacle.
THIS IS HARDLY A SURPRISE, AT CUNY: Communist Groups Helped Organize Petraeus Protest. “Protests against General David Petraeus Monday by CUNY students were organized by an ad hoc committee that includes several Communist groups. A leaflet for the protests, which refers to Petraeus as a ‘war criminal’ and ‘mass murderer,’ says that the events were organized by the Ad Hoc Committee Against the Militarization of CUNY and were endorsed by the Internationalist Group, Workers Power-US, and IGNITE. These groups are explicitly Communist in nature.” Where were the Sparts?
I think right-leaning groups should similarly hound Hillary and other Obama Administration apparatchiks — including Obama himself, when he ventures onto campuses, both now and post-Presidency. The standard of behavior has been established. Let them live with it.
“SMART DIPLOMACY:” Obama’s “Red Line” Remark Was Not A Gaffe, It Came From Hillary.
I SUPPOSE HILLARY WANTS THE BAD NEWS OUT NOW, SO SHE CAN CALL IT “OLD NEWS” IN 2016. BUT THIS IS PRETTY BIG AND PRETTY BAD. Investigators probe Jeffrey E. Thompson’s possible role in Clinton’s 2008 campaign. “Federal investigators are probing Hillary Rodham Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign as part of an effort to expand their case against a D.C. businessman alleged to have financed below-the-radar political operations, people familiar with the investigation said. The businessman, Jeffrey E. Thompson, allegedly provided more than $600,000 to fund secret get-out-the-vote efforts to help Clinton in at least four primary states. Prosecutors do not expect to pursue a separate criminal case against Clinton’s campaign, these people said.” Well, not while Eric Holder is Attorney General, certainly.
CULTURE OF CORRUPTION: D.C. executive linked to secret 2008 aid to Hillary Clinton. “The D.C. businessman at the center of an ongoing city corruption investigation secretly spent more than a half-million dollars on get-out-the-vote efforts for Hillary Rodham Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign, according to interviews and court documents filed Wednesday.”
ONCE AGAIN, THE GUARDIAN COVERS A NATIONAL SECURITY STORY THE NEW YORK TIMES WON’T: US consulate attack in Benghazi: a challenge to official version of events.
The attack on the US consulate in Benghazi was striking for a number of reasons: the date, 11 September, the toll – four diplomats killed, including an ambassador – and the knock-on effects on the careers of senior American politicians.
But what is perhaps most striking is the inconsistencies: the US version of events compared with those of witnesses and the facts on the ground. The two do not tally. And so, a year later, there remain pressing questions about what happened that night – and what the Americans say happened.
But the American media are shockingly incurious. Because, I suspect, they’re afraid that curiosity would produce a story that might be damaging to Obama — or to Hillary. Or both.
UNVEILED: Hillary Clinton’s 2016 Campaign Mascot. This was kinda previewed at the 2012 DNC.
THE HILL: Boehner backs Obama on Syria, but House leaning toward ‘no.’ I see a lot of Republicans angry at Boehner and Cantor for siding with Obama on this, but it seems to me to be a way of defusing any blame-the-GOP spin if the vote fails. “We tried, Obama just couldn’t close the deal” seems pretty good here, especially as Syria strikes are polling dreadfully and there’s plenty of visible Democratic opposition, too.
Related: Rice: White House has ‘no expectation’ of losing Syria vote. Yeah, they didn’t expect the “red line” to be crossed, either. . . .
Also: Hillary Clinton Throws Weight Behind Syria Strikes. Well, when “smart diplomacy” fails, can smart bombs be far behind?
The difference is, the bombs are actually smart . . . .
A BARACK DIVIDED AGAINST HIMSELF CANNOT STAND: Victor Davis Hanson: Obama Indicts Obama.
One of the problems that Barack Obama has in mounting an attack against the Assad regime is that the gambit violates every argument Barack Obama used against the Bush administration to establish his own anti-war candidacy.
The hypocrisy is so stunning that it infuriates his critics and stuns his supporters.
Deriding the Iraq war was Obama’s signature selling point. He used it to great effect against both Hillary Clinton (who voted for the war) in the Democratic primaries and John McCain in the general election. For the last five years, disparagement of “Iraq” and “Bush” has seemed to intrude into almost every sentence the president utters.
And now? His sudden pro-war stance makes a number of hypocritical assumptions.
Why yes, yes it does.
HEY, IT’S NOT LIKE SHE WAS SECRETARY OF STATE OR ANYTHING: Hillary Clinton Stays Quiet On Syria. “While at State, Clinton was more than active on crisis in Syria: She voiced frequent condemnation for President Bashar al-Assad, worked to pledge tens of millions in humanitarian aid to the Syrian people, strengthened sanctions against Assad’s regime, and at times took a harder line on the country’s civil war than the president.”
Well, earlier she called Assad a “reformer.” So it might be a bit awkward.
HEY, IT’S NOT LIKE SHE WAS SECRETARY OF STATE UNTIL JUST A FEW MONTHS AGO OR ANYTHING: Why a nervous Hillary Clinton is remarkably silent on Syria.
THE SYRIA DEBACLE: Questions For Hillary Clinton.
CAN HILLARY CLINTON SURVIVE BENGHAZI? “Well, sure: she’s a Democrat. That’s the easy, cynical response, and let’s face it–it’s probably right. Still, by any normal standard Benghazi would be considered a career-ending debacle. Four men, including one of her own ambassadors, were murdered on Hillary’s watch, after they had pleaded with her State Department for better security. The cable denying the ambassador’s request for better protection went out over Hillary’s signature.”
AFFECTION, OR NOT: Hillary Burns Bill (And 9 Other Awkward Kisses).
CAMILLE PAGLIA: Excuse me, but what, exactly, does Hillary Clinton actually bring to the table? “It’s time to put my baby-boom generation out to pasture! We’ve had our day and managed to muck up a hell of a lot. It remains baffling how anyone would think that Hillary Clinton (born the same year as me) is our party’s best chance. She has more sooty baggage than a 90-car freight train. And what exactly has she ever accomplished — beyond bullishly covering for her philandering husband? She’s certainly busy, busy and ever on the move — with the tunnel-vision workaholism of someone trying to blot out uncomfortable private thoughts. . . . Democrats have got to shake off the Clinton albatross and find new blood.”
Plus, the benefits of unregulated Internet capitalism: “I am of course delighted that the fanatical puritan feminists of the anti-pornography crusade of the 1980s have been forced to eat dirt!”
GREENTECH UPDATE: Despite denials, docs show McAuliffe company asked feds to fast-track visa for investor tied to spy list. Note that the Anthony Rodham involved is Hillary’s brother.
THE RUNNING DOGS ARE OUT, PREPARING THE BATTLESPACE FOR HILLARY: Tom Bevan: A Beastly Attack on Ted Cruz.
Funny, nobody wanted to tell us what Obama’s college roommates remembered.
CULTURE OF CORRUPTION: Huma Abedin’s Murky Role at State Department Under Scrutiny. “For months,Republican Senator Chuck Grassley has been questioning why Abedin was made a “special government employee” by the State Department in June 2012, allowing her to stay on as an adviser to the secretary of State while working for Teneo, a consulting firm founded by a former aide to Bill Clinton, and being privately employed by the Clinton Foundation and Hillary Clinton personally. Now the New York Times has joined in Grassley’s quest, but both Abedin and the State Department remain less than forthcoming about her arrangement. . . . For those keeping score (or searching for ammunition to use against Hillary in 2016), this is the third controversy to emerge this summer about the murky roles of those involved in various Clinton-related ventures.”
WHEN, OF COURSE, SHE KNEW THAT IT WAS JUST THAT: Hillary Clinton exploded at a congressman two days after Benghazi for suggesting that the attack was the work of terrorists, says GOP Rep.
An Illinois Republican congressman told constituents at a town hall meeting on Wednesday that then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton screamed at a fellow member of Congress two days after a U.S. diplomatic station in Benghazi, Libya was destroyed, merely for saying aloud that the attack was carried out by terrorist groups.
The Obama administration later acknowledged that reality.
But White House officials initially maintained that the deaths of four Americans and the firebomb attack on the State Department mission was the result of a spontaneous protest against a low-budget YouTube film that was critical of the Muslim prophet Muhammad.
‘Two days after this attack,’ said Rep. Adam Kinzinger, ‘we were in a briefing with Hillary Clinton and she screamed at a member of Congress who’d dare suggest that this was a terrorist attack.’
‘Now we find out that while it was happening, they knew it was a terrorist attack. These are answers that we’re going to get to the bottom of.’
Kinzinger’s office told National Review Online that the meeting he referred to was a classified briefing held for all members of Congress.
The congressman appeared on the Fox News Channel on Friday, recalling Clinton ‘basically, in a very loud, angry voice, [saying] “It’s irresponsible to even suggest this is a terror attack. This is a YouTube video. We know that there are protests all over, and we need to be very careful how we’re saying this” — and basically chided this member of Congress.’
At least scapegoated filmmaker Nakoula is now out of jail.
WHAT’S RAND PAUL DOING OVER SUMMER BREAK? Performing free eye surgery on the indigent. Stupid unfeeling libertarians! Why can’t he do something for the less fortunate — like Hillary Clinton is doing!
HOW ABOUT THAT: When Hillary Decided Anthony Weiner Was a Liability, All of His Democratic Friends in Politics and the Media Suddenly Found Out All Sorts of interesting Things. “That’s funny considering Shillary’s husband had an affair with a staffer.”
Plus: “Incidentally… It is now reported that this alleged affair was notorious and obvious, but apparently Bob Filner’s rampage of molestation was a tightly kept secret that No One Knew About.”