The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Documentaries, plays, and grand operas will be written about what was done to Hillary Clinton in the election of 2016. Some normal mistakes were mixed in with her many accomplishments, but there was nothing normal about her treatment by political foes and many of the respectable media alike.

The gang-up on Clinton amounted to political torture, the likes of which will be remembered for generations. That makes Hillary Clinton the Martyr of the Year.

Clinton entered the race having already endured decades of coordinated right-wing attacks — though only when she got ambitious. She had left the secretary of state job with high approval ratings and glowing praise from Republicans. The ludicrous and vicious notion that she was somehow to blame for the Benghazi tragedy was invented only after she began her campaign.

Come the nominating process, Clinton endured the drowning test by which the left wing habitually torments centrist Democrats. In witch trials, the woman is tied up and thrown in the water. If she sinks, she’s deemed innocent and pulled out from drowning. Bernie Sanders’ left held her down for the longest time.

The Sanders campaign was not an ordinary challenge for the Democratic nomination but a war to annihilate the ideologically impure. The man who to this day has refused to release his tax returns smeared Clinton as a toady of billionaires because she gave some paid speeches to Wall Street.

Despite television’s romance with Sanders’ torchlight parades, Clinton amassed a commanding 3 million-vote lead over him. Instead of conceding, Sanders called on the delegates to nullify the voters’ choice. Failing that, he withheld his support for Clinton — implying he could make her lose — until the party submitted to his demands. It largely did.

Sanders eventually came around and offered Clinton full-throated support, but only after having made her radioactive to his more rabid followers and handing Donald Trump lots of ammo. When Clinton was finally pulled out of the water, she was alive but gasping.

Then came Trump. We won’t go into the free and unmediated attention TV news outlets bestowed on his carnival act. This is about the so-called seekers of truth trying to seem tough on the candidate they supported while hungering for clickbait.

Trump’s master of media manipulation, Steve Bannon, couldn’t have passed so many lies or turned minor concerns into major scandal without high-powered help. Planting a story in some Clinton-hating tabloids was no big deal, David Brock, a right-winger turned Democratic operative, explained to Bloomberg Businessweek. The jackpot was The New York Times because of its reputation.

“If you were trying to create doubt and qualms about (Clinton) among progressives, the Times is the place to do it,” Brock said. From Bannon’s point of view, “the Times is the perfect host body for the virus.”

The Clinton email “controversy” was a hot air blimp on which even sophisticated Americans were taken for a ride. So when, days before the election, FBI Director James Comey announced more emails without supplying a grain of dirt, the public was already primed.

“New Emails Jolt Clinton Campaign” dominated the front page of the next day’s Times. The demoralization of her campaign was complete.

Facebook, meanwhile, was doing a big business disseminating fake and damaging news stories about Clinton written for profit around the world.

Despite all this, despite entering Election Day with her torso covered in arrows, Clinton won 2.7 million more popular votes than Trump. That’s 2.7 million more — and she still loses.

One need not worship Hillary Clinton to know she deserves an altar in the hall of political martyrs. Go light a candle with her face on it.

Follow Froma Harrop on Twitter @FromaHarrop. She can be reached at fharrop@gmail.com. To find out more about Froma Harrop and read features by other Creators writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators webpage at www.creators.com.

IMAGE: U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks at Transylvania University in Lexington, Kentucky, U.S., May 16, 2016. REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein

Advertising

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

From left Ethan Crumbley and his parents Jennifer and James Crumbley

Mug shot photos from Oakland County via Dallas Express

After the 2012 massacre at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut, then-Rep. Mike Rogers, a Michigan Republican, evaded calls for banning weapons of war. But he had other ideas. The "more realistic discussion," Rogers said, is "how do we target people with mental illness who use firearms?"

Tightening the gun laws would seem a lot easier and less intrusive than psychoanalyzing everyone with access to a weapon. But to address Rogers' point following the recent mass murder at a suburban Detroit high school, the question might be, "How do we with target the adults who hand powerful firearms to children with mental illness?"

Keep reading... Show less

Gen. Charles Flynn

Reprinted with permission from DailyKos

A former D.C. National Guard official blasted the Pentagon inspector general’s report on the military’s response to the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol and directly accused two top generals of lying about their role in the delays deploying the National Guard that day. Previously, the former commander of the D.C. National Guard—who now serves as the House sergeant-at-arms—had called for the retraction of the same inspector general’s report.

Keep reading... Show less
x
{{ post.roar_specific_data.api_data.analytics }}