Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.
Wednesday, October 26, 2016

WASHINGTON — It’s Hillary Clinton, not Jeb Bush, who will take former President George H. W. Bush as her role model. Her road to victory was blazed by Jeb’s dad in 1988.

It would help a great deal, of course, if events also flowed her way, as they did for Bush 41. In 1988, gross domestic product grew by 4.2 percent. There’s nothing like rapid growth to incline voters toward keeping the same crowd in power. Relations with the Soviet Union were warming. That helped Bush Sr. too.

But President Ronald Reagan and his vice president also made an arrangement that was vital for the GOP’s success. By the end of the Reagan presidency, the country was not prepared to take the status quo again without some alterations and embellishments. Voters had signaled their desire for something different in the 1986 midterm elections by handing the Senate back to the Democrats after six years of Republican control.

So Bush ran as Reagan Plus. He promised that he would be both an “Education President” and an “Environmental President,” neatly stamping himself with the new and improved label. Both issues appealed to middle-of-the-road swing voters, many of whom had voted for Reagan but were not hardcore Reaganites.

The key was the Reagan White House’s complicity in Bush’s partial distancing of himself from the Gipper’s legacy. Reagan and his lieutenants were happy to give him some running room since they knew that a Republican victory in 1988 was the surest way to ratify the conservative legacy of the 1980s.

And Bush organized a brutal campaign against Michael Dukakis, the Democratic nominee, well-described in Will Rabbe’s recent documentary, Above the Fray, around issues connected to race, crime and patriotism. Bush identified the then Massachusetts governor with the aspects of liberalism that voters had rejected before. Bush’s campaign manager Lee Atwater saw how important white working-class voters would be. They will be significant again in 2016.

Thus, Hillary Clinton’s campaign will come in two parts, the first related to President Obama, the second taking straight aim at the radical form of conservatism that has engulfed the GOP.

She must stay close enough to Obama — and he to her — to rally the large Obama base that will get her most of the way toward a majority. Clinton can’t expect to generate the same enthusiasm Obama did among the young, particularly younger African-Americans. But she is likely to get most of them to the polls, and supplement their votes with new energy among women. What she cannot afford are signs of awkwardness in her relations with Obama.

But a strategic distance is not the same as estrangement, as long as it’s worked out in advance. David Axelrod, Obama’s longtime advisor, has noted that voters are always looking for the corrective to whatever they didn’t like in the previous administration. Clinton will present herself as both a realist when it comes to the intransigence of the Republican Party — it took Obama time to acknowledge this — but also as someone with a history of working with Republicans. It will be an intricate two-step. “Tough enough to end polarization” may seem like an odd slogan, but something like it will be at the heart of her appeal.

And she will have to go both to Obama’s left and right. Clinton needs to run hard against economic inequality, pledging to get done the things Obama couldn’t on issues ranging from family leave, pre-K, and higher education. She will have to be strong on expanding the bargaining power of the lower-paid. Trade will be the tricky issue here.

She cannot break with Obama’s broad direction on foreign policy but she can signal a personal toughness (that word again) to reassure voters who are somewhat more hawkish than the president. He and she will have to find a way to orchestrate this, and it won’t be easy. The Iran negotiations will be the first, very challenging test.

But if things get dicey, the Republican right will prove to be her best ally. She will ask repeatedly: Does the country really want to give control of both the White House and Congress to a bunch of right-wing ideologues whom most voters mistrust? The elder Bush found that there was one more campaign to run against liberalism. Clinton is ahead in the polls because the country is not looking for a rendezvous with today’s brand of conservatism.

With a little help from the president and a lot of help from her enemies, Clinton can win.

E.J. Dionne’s email address is [email protected] Twitter: @EJDionne.

Photo: Esther via Flickr

  • TZToronto

    I think that emphasizing the overwhelming advantages enjoyed by the 1%–and the 1% of the 1%– can’t hurt, as well as pointing out that the idea of the non-contributing 47% is still big within the GOP. Things haven’t changed in the GOP since the 2012 election; the same ideas dominate the party, and they’ve gotten stronger and “wronger.” Whoever the right nominate, the strategy needs to be the same. These guys don’t like anyone but the uber-wealthy. Are you uber-wealthy? Will they help you? The answer is more obvious today than it was 4 years ago.

  • Independent1

    For those who are still skeptical about whether Hillary has really accomplished much over the years, especially with respect to how foreigners see Americans, and whether or not she’s ‘tough enough’ to stand up to other world leaders; below are some excerpts from an article about Meryl Streep’s tribute to Hillary – for all she’s done around the world to improve the lives of women; and to paint in many places a much different picture of what Americans are really all about, than what Republicans seem to want the world to believe:

    See these excerpts:

    But that night in the theater two years ago, the other six brave women came up on the stage. Anabella De Leon of Guatemala pointed to Hillary Clinton, who was sitting right in the front row, and said, “I met her and my life changed.” And all weekend long, women from all over the world said the same thing:

    “I’m alive because she came to my village, put her arm around me, and had a photograph taken together.”

    “I’m alive because she went on our local TV and talked about my work, and now they’re afraid to kill me.”

    “I’m alive because she came to my country and she talked to our leaders, because I heard her speak, because I read about her.”

    I’m here today because of that, because of those stories. I didn’t know about this. I never knew any of it. And I think everybody should know. This hidden history Hillary has, the story of her parallel agenda, the shadow diplomacy unheralded, uncelebrated — careful, constant work on behalf of women and girls that she has always conducted alongside everything else a First Lady, a Senator, and now Secretary of State is obliged to do.

    And it deserves to be amplified. This willingness to take it, to lead a revolution – and revelation, beginning in Beijing in 1995, when she first raised her voice to say the words you’ve heard many times throughout this conference: “Women’s Rights Are Human Rights.” When Hillary Clinton stood up in Beijing to speak that truth, her hosts were not the only ones who didn’t necessarily want to hear it. Some of her husband’s advisors also were nervous about the speech, fearful of upsetting relations with China. But she faced down the opposition at home and abroad, and her words continue to hearten women around the world and have reverberated down the decades.

    She’s just been busy working, doing it, making those words “Women’s Rights are Human Rights” into something every leader in every country now knows is a linchpin of American policy. It’s just so much more than a rhetorical triumph. We’re talking about what happened in the real world, the institutional change that was a result of that stand she took.

    When Vera Stremkovskaya, a lawyer and human rights activist from Belarus met Hillary Clinton a few years ago, they took a photograph together. And she said to one of the Secretary’s colleagues, “I want that picture.” And the colleague said, “I will get you that picture as soon as possible.” And Stremkovskaya said, “I need that picture.” And the colleague said, “I promise you.” And Stremkovskaya said, “You don’t understand. That picture will be my bullet-proof vest.”

    Never give up. Never, never, never, never, never give up. That is what Hillary Clinton embodies.

    For more, go here:

    You won’t see Hillary Clinton in the same light ever again

    • Louis Allen

      Hey, Dependent!
      Too bad the Benghazi heroes can’t say that they are alive today because of your friend Hillary …..

      • Independent1

        What’s too bad is that you keep wanting to perpetuate a lie!! Hillary had NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR PROTECTING THE BENGHAZI CONSULATE BECAUSE IT WASN’T A CONSULATE – IT WAS A CIA DETACHMENT!!!

        When are you going to keep up WITH THE FACTS?? The CIA has already taken responsibility for having provided the protection for Benghazi!! They sent reinforcements there within an hour and unfortunately two of the people then sent were those who lost their lives.


        And what about the 10 Benghazi’s that happened during Bush’s 8 disastrous years?? Are you mourning still for the more than 70 who died them BIGOT??? HYPOCRITE??? WORTHLESS POS???

        Yes!! more than 70 Died in 10 deadly consulate/embassy attacks during the last worthless GOP presidency!! Where were you then???

        • Louis Allen

          Deppy, you little coward, here are the facts about whether the State Dept had responsibility: ” In the aftermath of the attack, State Department
          officials were criticized for denying requests for additional security
          at the consulate prior to the attack. As Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton subsequently took responsibility for the security lapses.” — Wikipedia

          You, irresponsible idiot, stand discredited.

          • Independent1

            You really have to stop believing those right-wing biased sites/publications which can find their way into wikipedia. Nobody ‘refused to provide security’ for the Benghazi office. Extra security was offered to Stevens twice and both times he refused it!!! And again, it wasn’t the State Department that offered it, it was the CIA – the military.

            See this loser:

            CAIRO — In the month before attackers stormed U.S. facilities in Benghazi and killed four Americans, U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens twice turned down offers of security assistance made by the senior U.S. military official in the region in response to concerns that Stevens had raised in a still secret memorandum, two government officials told McClatchy.

            Why Stevens, who died of smoke inhalation in the first of two attacks that took place late Sept. 11 and early Sept. 12, 2012, would turn down the offers remains unclear. The deteriorating security situation in Benghazi had been the subject of a meeting that embassy officials held Aug. 15, where they concluded they could not defend the U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi. The next day, the embassy drafted a cable outlining the dire circumstances and saying it would spell out what it needed in a separate cable.

            “In light of the uncertain security environment, US Mission Benghazi will submit specific requests to US Embassy Tripoli for additional physical security upgrades and staffing needs by separate cover,” said the cable, which was first reported by Fox News.

            Army Gen. Carter Ham, then the head of the U.S. Africa Command, did not wait for the separate cable, however. Instead, after reading the Aug. 16 cable, Ham phoned Stevens and asked if the embassy needed a special security team from the U.S. military. Stevens told Ham it did not, the officials said.

            Weeks later, Stevens traveled to Germany for an already scheduled meeting with Ham at AFRICOM headquarters. During that meeting, Ham again offered additional military assets, and Stevens again said no, the two officials said.

            “He didn’t say why. He just turned it down,” a defense official who asked not to be identified because of the sensitivity of the subject told McClatchy.

            Read more here:

            And note that Fox News even reported that the extra security was offered and Stevens REFUSED IT!!!

          • Louis Allen

            Deppy, you little coward and Obama-Killary un-conditional whhhorre:
            1) “You really have to stop believing those right-wing biased sites/publications which can find their way into wikipedia.”, you say?? That’s soooo funny, Dependent, Wikipedia being “right-wing”, yeah, right!
            2) And listen, you little coward and brainless Obama-Killary sycophant, if the State Dept. was not responsible for the ambassador’s security (something that, on its face is PATENTLY false !), why didn’t Killary just SAY SO when she appeared (after her “illness”) before Congress.
            3) BOTH you and Killary, both worthless and debased caricatures of human beings, will say ANYTHING, ANYTHING, to gain favor with the electorate. But you will see the 2016 electoral results, all against you hypocrites (actually, Killary will not even survive the primaries).
            You, as always, are one of the most pathetic posters on TNM.
            Go back to your pigsty, Dependent.

          • Independent1

            Say Moron!! When are you going to grow up?? Huh??

            First of all – anyone can post an article to Wikipedia; so articles are only as accurate as the integrity and effort of the person who posted the article. So yes – some articles on Wikipedia are in fact posted by right-wingers who clearly have no integrity whatsoever. And that even holds true for right-wing sites such as the Heritage Foundation which has been proven to lie profusely!!!

            But in any case dumbcoff – Benghazi was a CIA detachment with a small Consulate acting as a cover. Acting as a cover that is, until a moronic legislator named Issa kept digging and digging and digging until the CIA had to finally own up to being responsible for the security of the detachment. Which the director of the CIA did and refuted basically every lie that Issa and Faux News had concocted to create their fake scandal.

            Virtually nothing that Faux News published about what supposedly happened actually happened. There was no refusal to provide security. No one was ever asked to ‘stand down’ with respect to providing help which was even remotely possible to provide during the attack. And on top of all that, the guy who was the instigator of the attack which ended up killing Stevens and the others; and who is now in custody – has admitted that a big driver of the attack WAS IN FACT THE ANTI-ISLAM VIDEO!!!

            Virtually everything that the GOP and Faux News have been harping on IS ONE BIG LIE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          • Louis Allen

            Ha, ha, haa!! You decrepit mind. Cite your sources, if any ….
            “There was no refusal to provide security. No one was ever asked to
            ‘stand down’ with respect to providing help which was even remotely
            possible to provide during the attack.”
            Reagan, the BEST president (by far !) of the 20th century, said it best: “The problem with our liberal friends is not so much that they don’t know anything, but that they know so much that just ain’t so ….”
            He was talking about you, dummy.

          • Independent1

            Wow!! You really are a brainwashed RWNJ!! So mentally retarded you call the worst president America ever had the BEST!!

            Wow!! There was never anyone more devious, despicable and evil who sat in the Oval Office than Reagan. He virtually destroyed the very fabric of American life by poisoning Americans’ minds on our government (calling it our Biggest Problem);
            and by destroying the notion of unions; by creating the fantasy of Trickle-Down economics;
            and by cutting the max tax rate more than in half so he and his rich buddies could rob more taxpayer money and start America’s enormous income inequality;
            and by appointing two known union haters to the NLRB,
            and by dealing directly with terrorists and even giving them weapons and money,
            and by condoning and supporting the use of Chemical weapons on another Army (for Saddam against Iran);
            and by putting hundreds of U.S. Marines in direct danger in Lebanon for one of his foolish escapades where 241 of them died in their sleep because he edicted that those guarding them couldn’t carry loaded weapons;
            and then after they were killed just cutting and running never trying to find their killers;
            and by being the 1st president to ever triple America’s debt making it a debtor nation;
            and by spending more money in 8 years than all the presidents before him since the Big Depression had spent combined;
            and by having more people in his administration charged with felonies (more than 100) and many actually convicted and sent to prison – more than all the presidents before him combined.
            And on and on and on and on!!

            Ronald Reagan, clearly not only the worst person but the worst president America EVER HAD!!!!!!

          • Louis Allen

            Wow, Dependent, CONGRATULATIONS !!
            You have absolutely PROVED that tou are as crazy as Lenore Whiptaker, the Crazy Cow !
            1) EIGHT (8 !!!) posts, full of VENOM, in response to my post. I think that is a bulls**t record on this site, even breaking YOUR OWN previous one, hee, hee, heee!!
            I repeat, Ronald Reagan, the BEST president (by far !) of the 20th century, said it best: “The problem with our liberal friends is not so much that they don’t know anything, but that they know so much that just ain’t so ….”
            He was talking about you, dummy.
            Go and have that EMPTY skull of your checked by a professional, ….. and take Eleanore with you so you get a better deal from Dr. Kevorkian ….
            What a complete ignoramus, LOL !!

          • Independent1

            You’ve got it LOWLIFE!! I’ve got 17 descendants already who are needing to live in America: and this deceitful, despicable person called Ronald Reagan has done more to make their lives more difficult than any other lowlife in history!! I’ll never stop ranting against this disgusting individual!!!!

          • Louis Allen

            Wow, Dependent, again, ….. CONGRATULATIONS !!

            Now we know (perhaps I should say that now EVERYBODY knows, because I already knew it), that you are a hateful, venomous POS (just like Lenore Whiptaker).
            Plus, you are a complete hypocrite: listen to yourself !!
            “I’ve got 17 descendants (“descendants” as useless and crazy as you, Deppy ??!!) already who are needing (whatever “needing” means) to live in America: and this deceitful, despicable person called Ronald Reagan has done more to make their lives more difficult than any other lowlife in history!!”

            Sooooo, …. you have a personal ax to grind when it comes to ILLEGAL immigrants, HUH ?!

            INTERESTING, to say the least.
            I insist, go and see Dr. Kevorkian ! (he is dead, you say? PRECISELY, go and see Dr. Kevorkian, you dumbass !!)

            What a complete ignoramus, LOL !!

          • Independent1

            Ax to grind with illegals?? Absolutely not!! I have no clue why RWNJs are making them such demons.

            But don’t get any notions Ronnie granted them amnesty out of the goodness of his heart. Ronnie gave them amnesty to appease his rich donors that depended on them for working at dirt cheap pay. There were a lot of Americans carping about those rich folks taking advantage of the cheap illegals labor – so by giving them a path to citizenship – that cut out down on that carping of Americans against many of Ronnie’s cohorts.

            But when you think about the fact that ever since Ronnie was president, companies in America have done everything they can to screw the worker: like cuting out pension plans, moving to hiring temps to get around having to provide large percentages of their work forces with benefits – like health care, paid sick days off, as few vacation days as they can get away with and holding down pay increases so on an inflation adjusted basis people are working for less today than when Ronnie was in office, and on and on. You can thank Ronnie for all of that. Hope you really like the much more adversarial America of today – because Ronnie’s largely responsible for that too. And it was Bush 1 and 2 following Ronnie’s – spend like a drunken sailor practice – that is why we have 18 trillion in debt today.

            Are you really happy with all that????????

          • Louis Allen

            You are such a “dependent” dumbass.
            After 6-1/2 years of Barry and Joe The Clown, both you and the hypocritical woman who will say ANYTHING to get elected blame Reagan (out of Office for 26, yes, 26 YEARS, you Maximus Dumbassus !!) and the Bushes for the (very) sorry state that our Nation finds itself in.
            And all you offer as “solutions” are MORE of what Obammy has done, a socialist agenda THAT DOES NOT AND CANNOT EVER WORK.
            Again, to you pathetic excuse for a “poster”, even on this website full of cockroaches, Ronald Reagan, the BEST president (by far !) of the 20th century, said
            it best: “The problem with our liberal friends is not so much that they
            don’t know anything, but that they know so much that just ain’t so …..”
            He was talking about you, dummy.
            P.S. – So you deny that you have a personal ax to grind when it comes to ILLEGAL immigrants, HUH ?! BUT, as is consistent with your very special brand of HYPOCRISY, you skirt the issue and fail to explain (BUT OF COURSE !!) what you meant with: “I’ve got 17 descendants already who are needing to live in America.” Aside from your LOUSY English, what did you mean by THAT??!!
            What a complete dumbass.

          • Independent1

            Like a number of posters on the NM always say: YOU CAN’T FIX STUPID!! AND YOU SURE PROVE THAT IS TRUE IN SPADES!!! DUMB IS AS DUMB GETS!!! YOU’LL GET YOURS!! YOU CAN COUNT ON IT!!!!!! BYE!!!!!!

          • Louis Allen

            Dependent, you pathetic excuse for a “poster”:
            What’s the reason for your VENOM?! (Tell us that, because the reason for your stupidity we already know: you run around with Lenore, the dummy!)
            Again, you deny that you have a personal ax to grind when it comes to
            ILLEGAL immigrants, HUH ?! BUT, as is consistent with your very special
            brand of HYPOCRISY, you skirt the issue and fail to explain (BUT OF
            COURSE !!) what you meant with: “I’ve got 17 descendants already who are
            needing to live in America.” Aside from your LOUSY English, what did
            you mean by THAT??!!
            What a complete dumbell.
            Stop running around with Lenore; keeping that kind of company will make you even DUMBER (and THAT’S saying a lot, LOL !!!)

          • dpaano

            I seriously think he was suffering from dementia early in his presidency….why else would he not be able to “remember” things that went on during his administration? Interesting concept!

          • Independent1

            And here’s just a short summary of Reagan’s terrible firsts:

            1. First to turn America into a DEBTOR nation.

            2. First to increase DEBT faster than growth of national income in eight years.

            3. First to increase DEBT faster than growth of GDP over eight years.

            4. First to double America’s debt in just eight years.

            5. First to triple the national DEBT in just eight years.

            6. First to increase SPENDING by 80%–over 8 years.

            7. First to have a popularity rating of 35% after his 1st
            two years in office

            8. First to have unemployment at 10.8% since big epression

            10. First to SPEND more in eight years than was spent in prior 50 years.

            11. First to have “real” INTEREST RATES of 8% after averaging 1% over 35 years.

            12. First to keep PRIME INTEREST RATES at 20%.

            13. First to over value the dollar to the Yen at rate of 262 yen to $1

            14. First to have served as Governor and increased spending by 112% in less than 8 years

            15. First to have home loan interest rates as high as 16%

            16. First to cut taxes by 60% for his rich pals

            17. First to “deal” with terrorists.

            17.a First to support a dictator’s (saddam;s) use of chemical weapons against an enemy (Iran)

            18. First to bust a union and then appoint union haters to run the department of labor

            19. First to set a record for the largest one day percentage decline of the Dow – 10-19-87

            20. First to have increased his wealth by over $10,000,000 from serving for 8 years as president

            21. First in having servicemen killed during peacetime (241 killed while they slept in their barracks)

            22. First in Farm Foreclosures

            23. First in Savings & Loan Failures

            24. First in percent of increase in personal bankruptcies

            25. First to have an Assistant Secretary of State indicted

            26. First to have an Assistant Secretary of Defense sent to

            27. First to have 100 Members of an Administration Charged
            with Crimes

            28. First to have more members of his administration charged with crimes than the cumulative total of all previous presidents in the 20th Century

            29. First to testify under oath 130 times “ I don’t

            30. First to have an Admiral with a photographic memory
            testify 128 times “I don’t remember”

            31. First to honor “Nazi Storm Troopers” by calling them
            “innocent victims”

            32. First governor to increase personal income tax by 60%,
            increase taxes on cigarettes by 200% and state tax collections by 152%

            33. First president to have been divorced17. First to have an Admiral plead the “fifth amendment”

            34. First to negotiate with the ayatollahs of Iran to not release its American prisoners until after anelection to give him an edge

            35. First to participate in a nefarious activity like the Iran/Contra fiasco

            36. First president to sign a law offering Amnesty to 3 million illegal aliens; 2.9 million of which took the

          • Independent1

            List of Reagan administration convictions.

            “By the end of his term, 138 Reagan administration officials had been convicted, had been indicted, or had been the subject of official investigations for official misconduct and/or criminal violations. In terms of number of officials involved, the record of his administration was the worst ever.”

            1. Lyn Nofziger–White House Press Secretary – Convicted on charges of illegal lobbying of White House in Wedtech scandal. The lobbying would not have been illegal had he not been White House Press Secretary.

            2. Michael Deaver, Reagan’s Chief of Staff, received three years’ probation and was fined one hundred thousand dollars after being convicted for lying to a congressional subcommittee and a federal grand jury about his lobbying activities after leaving the White House. Same as with Lyn Nofziger.

            3. James Watt, Reagan’s Secretary of the Interior was indicted on 41 felony counts for using connections at the Department of Housing and Urban Development to help his private clients seek federal funds for housing projects in Maryland, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Watt conceded that he had received $500,000 from clients who were granted very favorable housing contracts after he had intervened on their behalf. Watt was eventually sentenced to five years in prison and 500 hours of community service.

            4. John Poindexter, Reagan’s national security advisor, guilty of five criminal counts involving conspiracy to mislead Congress, obstructing congressional inquiries, lying to lawmakers, used “high national security” to mask deceit and wrong-doing…

            5. Richard Secord pleaded guilty to a felony charge of lying to Congress over Iran-Contra. Appointed by William Casey to assist Oliver North.

            6. Elliott Abrams was appointed by President Reagan in 1985 to head the State Department’s Latin American Bureau. He was closely linked with ex-White House aide Lt. Col. Oliver North’s covert movement to aid the Contras. Working for North, Abrams coordinated inter-agency support for the contras and helped solicit illegal funding from foreign powers as well as domestic contributors. Abrams agreed to cooperate with Iran-Contra investigators and pled guilty to two charges reduced to misdemeanors. He was sentenced in 1991 to two years probation and 100 hours of community service but was pardoned by President George Bush…


          • Independent1

            Obama Outperforms Reagan On Jobs, Growth And Investing

            Bob Deitrick: ”President Reagan has long been considered the best modern economic President. So we compared his performance dealing with the oil-induced recession of the 1980s with that of President Obama and his performance during this ‘Great Recession.’

            “As this unemployment chart shows, President Obama’s job creation kept unemployment from peaking at as high a level as President Reagan, and promoted people into the workforce faster than President Reagan.

            “President Obama has achieved a 6.1% unemployment rate in his sixth year, fully one year faster than President Reagan did. At this point in his presidency, President Reagan was still struggling with 7.1% unemployment, and he did not reach into the mid-low 6% range for another full year. So, despite today’s number, the Obama administration has still done considerably better at job creating and reducing unemployment than did the Reagan administration.

            “We forecast unemployment will fall to around 5.4% by summer, 2015. A rate President Reagan was unable to achieve during his two terms.”


          • Independent1

            Without Reagan’s Treason, Iran Would Not Be a Problem

            Republican attempts to sabotage a Democratic president’s deal with Iran are nothing new, however.

            Just ask Jimmy Carter.

            In 1980 Carter thought he had reached a deal with newly-elected Iranian President Abdolhassan Bani-Sadr over the release of the fifty-two hostages held by radical students at the American Embassy in Tehran.

            Bani-Sadr was a moderate and, as he explained in an editorial for The Christian Science Monitor earlier this year, had successfully run for President on the popular position of releasing the hostages:

            “I openly opposed the hostage-taking throughout the election campaign…. I won the election with over 76 percent of the vote…. Other candidates also were openly against hostage-taking, and overall, 96 percent of votes in that election were given to candidates who were against it [hostage-taking].”

            Carter was confident that with Bani-Sadr’s help, he could end the embarrassing hostage crisis that had been a thorn in his political side ever since it began in November of 1979.
            But Carter underestimated the lengths his opponent in the 1980 Presidential election, California Governor Ronald Reagan, would go to screw him over.

            Behind Carter’s back, the Reagan campaign worked out a deal with the leader of Iran’s radical faction – Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khomeini – to keep the hostages in captivity until after the 1980 Presidential election.

            This was nothing short of treason. The Reagan campaign’s secret negotiations with Khomeini – the so-called “October Surprise” – sabotaged Carter and Bani-Sadr’s attempts to free the hostages. And as Bani-Sadr told The Christian Science Monitor in March of this year, they most certainly “tipped the results of the [1980] election in Reagan’s favor.”

            Not surprisingly, Iran released the hostages on January 20, 1981, at the exact moment Ronald Reagan was sworn into office.

            The “October Surprise” emboldened the radical forces inside Iran. A politically weakened Bani-Sadr was overthrown in June of 1981 and replaced with Mohammed Ali Rajai – a favorite of Khomeini’s. These radical forces today are represented by people like former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, hard-liners who oppose any deal with the United States and, like Khomeini in the 1980s, will jump at any chance to discredit the current moderate presidency of Hassan Rouhani.

            The October Surprise also led to the deaths of thousands of innocent people around the world, and in Central America in particular. Reagan took money from the Iranians and used that money to kill nuns in Nicaragua.

            But those are just the most obvious results of the October Surprise. Again, if Carter were able to free the hostages like he and Bani-Sadr had planned, Carter would have won re-election. After all, he was leading in most polls in the months leading up to the election. And if Reagan were never elected, America would be a much more progressive nation.


          • Independent1

            Ronald Reagan’s shameful legacy: Violence, the homeless, mental illness

            As president and governor of California, the GOP icon led the worst policies on mental illness in generations

            In November 1980, Republican Ronald Reagan overwhelmingly defeated Jimmy Carter, who received less than 42% of the popular vote, for president. Republicans took control of the Senate (53 to 46), the first time they had dominated either chamber since 1954. Although the House remained under Democratic control (243 to 192), their margin was actually much slimmer, because many southern “boll weevil” Democrats voted with the Republicans.

            One month prior to the election, President Carter had signed the Mental Health Systems Act, which had proposed to continue the federal community mental health centers program, although with some additional state involvement. Consistent with the report of the Carter Commission, the act also included a provision for federal grants “for projects for the prevention of mental illness and the promotion of positive mental health,” an indication of how little learning had taken place among the Carter Commission members and professionals at NIMH. With President Reagan and the Republicans taking over, the Mental Health Systems Act was discarded before the ink had dried and the CMHC funds were simply block granted to the states. The CMHC program had not only died but been buried as well. An autopsy could have listed the cause of death as naiveté complicated by grandiosity.

            President Reagan never understood mental illness. Like Richard Nixon, he was a product of the Southern California culture that associated psychiatry with Communism. Two months after taking office, Reagan was shot by John Hinckley, a young man with untreated schizophrenia. Two years later, Reagan called Dr. Roger Peele, then director of St. Elizabeths Hospital, where Hinckley was being treated, and tried to arrange to meet with Hinckley, so that Reagan could forgive him. Peele tactfully told the president that this was not a good idea. Reagan was also exposed to the consequences of untreated mental illness through the two sons of Roy Miller, his personal tax advisor. Both sons developed schizophrenia; one committed suicide in 1981, and the other killed his mother in 1983. Despite such personal exposure, Reagan never exhibited any interest in the need for research or better treatment for serious mental illness.


          • Independent1

            And Government IS THE PROBLEM??

            Wow!! Just one more LIE!!


          • Independent1

            7 Things Republicans Would Be Shocked To Learn About Ronald Reagan

            “Happy birthday to Ronald Reagan!” Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) tweeted on Thursday,swiftly followed by his Tea Party compatriot Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX). While praise from this sort of Republican on what would have been President Reagan’s 103rd birthday isn’t surprising, it is somewhat ironic. Though Reagan was extremely conservative (often terribly so), he bucked the sort of hardline conservative line the Tea Party has become synonymous with repeatedly throughout his career in politics. Here are 7 Reagan moves that may well have led to his excommunication from today’s Republican Party if he were alive today:

            Go here for the 7:


          • dpaano

            Why don’t we all just decide NOT to respond to these trolls (including “Mike”). All they do is just sprout more and more BS whenever you try to educate them to the truth! It’s a waste of time and effort to respond to them. Maybe if we ignore them, they’ll go away (unlikely, but we can always hope).

          • Independent1

            And you haven’t answered my question worthless one – why haven’t you railed against the 70 people who died in 10 deadly attacks during Bush 2’s presidency?? HMMM???? Why are you carping so against Obama when there’s only been 1 deadly attack in 6 years with 4 people being killed???? Couldn’t be because Bush was just one more RWNJ could it????

          • Louis Allen

            Because Bush 2 is not running for President, and Killary is, you M*O*R*O*N !!
            Pathetic this guy.

          • dpaano

            He won’t answer because he can’t……these trolls can only deflect!!!

      • Independent1

        The last 6 years have been BY FAR the safest 6 years for our overseas offices in the past almost 40 years!! One deadly attack with 4 lost lives compared to an average of 10 attacks with more than 50 lives lost for the last 3 worthless GOP presidents!! And you and other GOP-loving hypocrites have the audacity to make a clownshow out of Benghazi?? How worthless of human beings can you be???

  • Louis Allen

    I hope she is “tough” enough to be able to withstand her years in prison.
    We’ll see.

    • Independent1

      More idiocy from an absolute hypocrite!!!

  • Stephan Alan Sonn

    Benghazi is an excuse for people who spend their life in fights of one kind or another. CIA and linked diplomatic missions routinely jump the shark in a shared vision of glory games. Like fog of war, it comes with the territory. There is nothing more she could have done but outlaw war, the primal substance of human kind. AS for Louis Allen he runs with the slow crowd in slo-mo.

    • Louis Allen

      Ha, ha, haa, Stephan!
      Funny and ironic that you, with that clueless countenance (that’s FACE, you cretin) and that ridiculous profile self-description as “retired sage”, would dare describe ANYBODY as “… running with the slow crowd in slo-mo.”
      Now go back to your pigsty.

  • Stephan Alan Sonn

    Troll on resident troll, maybe you will be adopted by a slooth.