The PJ Tatler

How Do the Clinton Scandals End? With the End of the Clintons

Ed Rogers asks, I answer:

In a compelling read, The Post’s Chris Cillizza just declared that Hillary Clinton “had the worst week in Washington.” Fortunately for Clinton, we all know that things in Washington can turn on a dime. Bad news recedes from the headlines, momentum shifts and today’s scandals and gaffes fade into distant memories. But given the long list of unanswered questions about the multitude of Clinton scandals, how will they come to an end? How can Clinton put a period at the end of the sentence and move on? It’s actually hard to see how that will be possible, simply because there is not one source of trouble. There are questions about her e-mails, Clinton Foundation donations, tax records, foreign influence — and that’s just this month. And given what we know about the Clintons, there is more to come and more shoes that will be dropping. Plus, all the new problems prompt fresh looks at all the old problems. Anyway, every week I have to tell someone that in Washington being innocent is only an advantage. Likewise, being guilty is only a disadvantage. Neither is determinative. But it’s safe to say Clinton is operating at a distinct disadvantage.

For decades the Clintons have relied on scandal fatigue, the protectiveness of the media and the sheer number of malfeasances this pair has subjected the nation to. Things that would humiliate decent people roll right off their back; they literally do not care what you think of them as long as you vote for them. They are literally shameless.

So what are Team Clinton’s options on how to manage the campaign politics? Some problems are solved and others are managed. The scandals currently in the public view won’t be solved, so the Clinton brain trust will have to find a way to manage them. Doesn’t the constant drip, drip, drip of damaging revelations deflate her supporters? Maybe the Clinton managers’ hope is that voters will just become numb to all of the questionable dealings that swirl around her universe. But I don’t see how Clinton’s supporters can be both numb and enthusiastic at the same time. Enthusiasm drives turnout. Numbness has got to suppress it. The way I see it, Clinton has three realistic strategies to manage the reality of her circumstances.

There follows Rogers’ suggestions, which you can read at the link. The third — a complete scorched-earth policy against their enemies — is the most likely to occur to Bubba and Lady Macbeth.

A recent Quinnipiac poll shows that Clinton is viewed as untrustworthy by 54 percent of the population, which makes her strategy simple. She will just need to make sure her opponent — whoever it is — is viewed as untrustworthy by 60 percent of the electorate. So the Clinton campaign has to start now by attacking the Republican brand. They will need to load the kitchen sink and get ready to launch it at their Republican opponent as soon as that person emerges. This means the 2016 campaign will get down in the gutter faster than in most previous campaigns.

I don’t think it will work this time. More important, I don’t think the Democrats are willing to go down with the Clintons should it fail.  I think they’re as heartily sick of these self-aggrandizing grifters as the electorate is. And I think that, just as they left Hillary! at the altar when they eloped with Obama in 2008, they’re going to kick her to the curb and pledge their troth to Granny Warren.