Hillary Clinton, The Lesser Of Two Evils
As the 2016 democratic primary grinds to a close, Americans are beginning to grimly realize that their only real choices on this November’s ballot will be between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Don’t worry… you aren’t the only person whose stomach just made those strange, uncomfortable noises.
We could easily spend the next few years agonizing over all the questionable stuff we’ve seen during this primary season. Voters having their party affiliations changed or their party membership cast out, the media calling primaries early, the AP calling the primary itself for Clinton just hours before California voted (a State where Sanders was tied with Clinton in most polls and had the most delegates at stake)… millions of Americans feel this primary was stolen, and I’m not inclined to tell them they’re wrong.
But the primary is essentially over, unless Bernie Sanders can pull off a miracle and win through a contested convention, with the full might of the DNC stacked against him. That means we’re stuck choosing between Clinton and Trump. While I’m no particular fan of having to pick the lesser of two evils, it’s pretty obvious Clinton is precisely that.
I don’t think Clinton would be “bad” for the country, but I also don’t believe she’d be “great,” and I certainly don’t believe she has a sliver of Bernie Sanders’ integrity. But one brief glance at Donald Trump should be more than enough to inform anyone with a triple-digit IQ that he would be terrible for this country, and that’s all it should really take to make up an initiated person’s mind between the two of them.
There’s just one problem with Hillary Clinton, and it’s a big one: she is utterly unelectable. If things don’t change, she’s going to get obliterated in the general election by Donald Trump, and as much as I’m no fan of Hillary’s, Donald Trump would certainly be far worse.
Nobody Likes Or Trusts Hillary Clinton
The Statistical wonks over at Nate Silver’s 538 crunched a bunch of numbers and discovered something lethargically unsurprising: Hillary Clinton is the second-most disliked presidential candidate in American history, “trumped” only by The Donald himself. The American public views her as dishonest, untrustworthy, and unlikable. And a candidate boasting any one of those three negative characteristics, let alone all three of them, is a person who shouldn’t be chasing after the Oval Office to begin with.
There’s a popular and wholly-misguided belief amongst democrats that the American public only hates Hillary Clinton because they’re being “baited” by the right-wing to do so. Last year, The New York Times wrote a now-famous article peddling that ridiculous theory, and it seems to be shared daily by Hillary supporters who are more confident in their candidate than they rightly deserve to be.
But when you walk up to any American on the street and ask them why they dislike or distrust Hillary Clinton, they won’t incoherently rattle off conspiracy theories about Benghazi, or Vince Foster, or the Clinton Global Initiative working out top-secret deals through the State Department with America’s enemies for money. If they do, then congratulations, you just found a right-wing lunatic who took a break from posting incredulous bullshit on the Internet to fulfill their monthly quotient of fresh air.
There’s only one person who deserves the blame for why the American people dislike and distrust Hillary Clinton. It’s not Rush Limbaugh or the buffoons at Fox News. It isn’t Donald Trump. It’s not Bernie Sanders or his legions of supporters. The only person who can be blamed for Hillary Clinton coming across as unlikable or untrustworthy is Hillary Clinton herself.
Hillary Clinton changes her views more often than she changes her underpants, which probably sounds disturbing if you aren’t familiar with how often she changes said opinions. One minute she’s a fervent centrist, the next she’s a passionate liberal. In one city she speaks with one accent, and in next she dons one with a dash of local flair. She recently delivered a speech on income inequality while wearing an Armani jacket worth $12,495… a jacket worth more than most of the cars her supporters drove to her rally in. A jacket likely paid for by Goldman Sachs and the top-secret paid speeches Hillary delivered to them for cash.
All of that adds up to Hillary Clinton inadvertently painting herself as dangerously ambitious, comically out-of-touch, and ridiculously dishonest, especially when it’s all coupled with her self-righteously regal demeanor, as if she’s been anointed by the Gods to ascend to the throne. Republicans don’t need to turn liberals against Hillary Clinton. She does that well enough on her own.
How Can She Actually Beat Donald Trump?
If Clinton wants to defeat Donald Trump this upcoming November, she needs to change a whole lot, which shouldn’t be hard for one of Washington DC’s most storied chameleons. The problem though, as I see it anyway, is that the change she needs to endure is change she isn’t willing to make. Change she likely doesn’t even know how to make.
To win over the masses of progressives and independents who flocked to Bernie Sanders during the primary, Hillary Clinton will need to stop trying to sound like Bernie, and start trying to be like him. Michelle Obama proves on a daily basis that you can be stylish shopping for clothes like a normal person… do that. Stop talking with whatever accent appeals to the locals; speak like yourself. And don’t shapeshift your positions based on public polling and the group you’re addressing. Be brutally honest with yourself, and do it out-loud so the American people have some idea where you actually stand on any given issue.
Donald Trump poses a serious threat to this country because Hillary Clinton is trying to respond to his perceived authenticity — however real or unreal that may be — by trying to come across as smarter and more experienced. That’s like trying to fight fire with hairspray. The only hope Clinton has of winning this primary is to shift her entire persona toward authenticity, and there’s only one way she can actually pull that off: by being authentic. And I think I can safely speak on behalf of millions of Americans when I say that seeing Hillary Clinton become truly authentic would be change we can all believe in.