After Hillary Clinton was exonerated by FBI Director James Comey on Tuesday morning, she received yet another perk of being the presumptive Democratic nominee that afternoon — the presidential seal itself! In an unprecedented move, President Obama allowed her to speak behind a podium with the seal of the office Clinton is seeking.
Four years ago — almost to the day — President Obama made a splash by appearing behind the seal himself during a campaign event, after pledging not to do so in the 2012 campaign. An Obama campaign official then pointed out that re-election campaigns for Presidents Bush, Clinton, and Reagan all used the presidential seal, but no campaign has ever allowed that seal to be used for the sitting president’s would-be successor, until today.
No, it wasn’t enough for the Dowager Empress of Chappaqua to get off apparently scot-free on “extremely careless” behavior that would have had serious consequences for others. It wasn’t enough for President Obama to endorse her and then to campaign with her, once she had been effectively exonerated. No, he had to give her the seal as well.
Twitter users were not happy. Some called it “hack propaganda.”
Staging Hillary at a podium w/ the presidential seal is hack propaganda that doesn’t work with social media. pic.twitter.com/c39cSna5gc
— Brogan (@BroganBurghard) July 5, 2016
Others said it was an “unfair psychological advantage.”
Why is Obama allowing a campaign event be held behind the presidential seal?
Asking for America.
— SalenaZito (@SalenaZitoTrib) July 5, 2016
Next Page: It’s even scarier to see Clinton backers happy about this sleight of hand.
Perhaps more scary even than the photos themselves was the reaction of Clinton sycophants happy about it.
I cannot get over how good Hillary Clinton looks standing behind the presidential seal. Powerful imagery. pic.twitter.com/4oB7JjyVRl
— Britta Plyler (@brittaplyler) July 5, 2016
“It just looks right…”
No, it won’t look right — or be right — until January 2017, and only IF Hillary Clinton wins the election this November. No matter how much you dislike Donald Trump or love Hillary (yes, some people actually do), you should not be happy about this awkward sleight of hand.
By the way, Obama might have done this for himself as much as for his successor. The president seems to have a predilection for presidential seals. While campaigning in 2008, he adopted a seal that said, “vero possumus,” a Latin version of “Yes, We Can.” After he had been elected, Obama developed a seal for the “office of the president elect.”
Nevertheless, it can’t fall too hard on Clinton’s ego to be pictured with the presidential seal, and I can’t imagine her campaign is too offended by the idea. Perhaps after the official exoneration this morning, Obama and Clinton thought now would be the time to go all out. But Americans are smarter than to accept it at face value — we know Clinton isn’t president yet, and millions of us will turn out to stop her.