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If not Hillary, who?

January 25, 2016

Sometimes people shape events, and sometimes it’s the other way around. That may well be why we now have a chance that Americans will have to vote for an avowed socialist if they want to vote against a Republican.

From the moment that Barack Obama became a lame duck, the DNC all but held a coronation for Hillary Clinton. The early money wasn’t even sure anyone would come out to run against her.

Eventually a few people did, and when Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT) threw his hat in the ring it became obvious from the big crowds Sanders draws that not everyone was bowing at the feet of the “inevitable” nominee.

Even the so-called smart money acknowledges that Mrs. Clinton has a few political warts and not the smallest of those has turned out to be her competency and honesty issues.

When reports of her mishandling of sensitive government information began to surface and she tried to play it dumb, it resulted in people asking an uncomfortable question.

Was she simply that incompetent or was she so sure that she was above the law that it didn’t matter?

That question has begun to dominate the conversation a lot more in recent weeks, and it is becoming even more prominent as the drip-drip of information continues to dribble out of the State Department.

Highlighting the discrepancies between what she says and what she did is the contrast between the administration response to the charges levied against General David Petraeus and their reaction to the similarities in her handling of seemingly identically sensitive information.

The time span from the moment that Barack Obama  learned of Gen. David Petraeus’ mishandling of classified information to the time the general “offered his resignation” was just three days, November 6 to November 9, 2012. The time span from the time the CIA opened an investigation into the General’s conduct on November 16, 2012 to the time he was fined on April 23, 2015 for his conduct was just 6 months and seven days.

In contrast, on December 5, 2014 Hillary Clinton turned over from her private server about half of some 62,000 total emails. She also disclosed that she deleted or destroyed nearly half of the total emails that she maintains were of a completely personal nature and thus not relevant to the  congressional requests that initiated the investigation.

The most damning charge against General Petraeus was that he allowed his biographer and later paramour access to classified government materials.

While the receivers and senders of the so-called SAP emails has not been publicly identified, it is known that Mrs. Clinton ignored a direct order from the President of the United States to distance her department from Sidney Blumenthal, receiving correspondence from him that has been revealed in other emails.

As of Friday January 22, 2016 the State Department has identified well over 1300 emails that were of a classified nature including some that attained top secret status and above.

Of course in the meantime, Mrs. Clinton also filed to be a candidate for President of the United States.

That leaves the Obama administration and the DNC between a rock and a hard place, particularly in view of newly renewed calls to further punish General Petraeus.

Do they allow the FBI to submit their findings to Attorney General Lynch, or try to keep a lid on the issue until they can assess the potential effect on the continuation of the Democratic hold on the presidency, not to mention the administration itself?

The list of potential charges ranges from simply perjuring herself by swearing in writing that she had turned over all of her work-related materials when she left the State Department to the far more serious charge of failure to protect sensitive information and even whether she intentionally made that information available to persons not working in or for the government.

The average man on the street is not in any doubt as to what should happen at this point. Candidate or not, in view of the mounting pile of evidence many people believe Mrs. Clinton should be formally investigated.

If the FBI and the Attorney General are to be believed to be truly independent of politics it would seem there is no choice.  Continuing to stall at this point only makes more of a mockery of the so-called impartial justice system.

The likelihood that the lid is about to fall off is probably why the DNC is reported to be scrambling to find a candidate that can effectively mount a campaign against socialist Bernie Sanders at this late stage of the game.

Their likely list of contenders is pretty slim. Vice-president Joe Biden already stated publicly as of several months ago that it was “too late” for him to enter the race. Elizabeth Warren has steadfastly refused to throw her hat in the ring for the nation’s top job.

Other names previously mentioned as possibilities are New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY).

Governor Martin O’Malley (D-Maryland), the sole person now running that was on the short list of possibilities back in 2012 is still in the race. Given his spectacularly lackluster performance to date any attempt to switch Mrs. Clinton’s support to him doesn’t look like a viable strategy at this point.

It’s likely that the DNC is going to see how Mrs. Clinton fares in the February contests.  If she significantly underperforms, look for calls for someone else to mount a Hail Mary run.

Given that Senator Sanders polls well even against Clinton, that could be a really tough row to hoe.

The other strategy is for the Clinton camp to try to quash the controversy by claiming that the FBI as well as the inspector general is in the pocket of Republicans before the nominating convention. Even the most partisan Democrats might have a hard time selling that to the nation at large.

And then you have another rich old white guy making noise about running as an independent.

Given Michael Bloomberg’s impressive net worth and very liberal political history, you could have an election where Donald Trump becomes the conservative-leaning GOP underdog by virtue of his smaller bank account, leaving voters the choice of which oligarch they want to vote for, or picking the guy that would like to strip wealth from both of them.

Only in America.

From → op-ed

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