With the general election months away, it’s time to discuss the elephant in room: The liberal left, and its visceral crusade against Democratic moderate Hillary Clinton and the misunderstanding of the American republic.
At the moment, there is generational gulf among Democrats in their presidential primary. In the years following the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s, youth culture has had an adverse effect on whom they deemed “presidential material.” Whether it was backing George McGovern against Richard Nixon in 1972, Bill Clinton against Republican incumbent George H.W. Bush in 1992, or Barack Obama against John McCain in 2008 and Mitt Romney in 2012, young democrats have typically flocked to a particular candidate and rallied in rampant zeal behind them.
However, with this election cycle, there is a great divide, with many young liberals backing outsider hopeful Bernie Sanders and many seasoned voters championing party favorite Hillary Clinton.
Undoubtedly, if one were to channel surf through their cable or Satellite TV providers, or objectively peruse through the internet, they’d note the glaring character assassination that Clinton has had to endure during this particular campaign trail.
Publications like The Daily Beast, Huffington Post, Salon and Los Angeles Times have all come to wavering inferences, criticizing her term as a former First Lady, her tenure representing New York as a U.S. Senator and her legacy as the 67th United States Secretary of State; As a contender for the position of commander-in-chief, Clinton is “not feminist enough,” that she is “too hawkish,” that she is “part of the establishment,” that Sanders’s Democratic Socialist idealism is more in-vogue and reformist than Clinton’s top-level pragmatism, that she would be continuing the hurly-burly of her husband’s controversial 1994 crime bill and the inflicting damage caused by post- L.A. uprising crime politics, and—get this—that she is not “progressive” enough for the future of the America in comparison to her Democratic competitor, Sanders.
As Savannah L. Barker of The Voidist notes, there are innumerable elements—in addition to 20-plus years of “relentless personal and political attacks”—that play an enormous part in “the overall negative perception some Millennials have of Hillary Clinton.”
One of the major reasons Clinton has become a primary target is the nationwide mythos that Hillary Clinton owes Wall Street political favors. On May 16, The New York Times announced that, if elected, Clinton would shape a position for her husband and former president, Bill, in her administration. NYT reporter Amy Chozick clarified that the role would zero in on “economic growth and job creation as crucial missions for the former president.” This news could prove difficult for staunch cynics of Clinton’s presidential campaign. Many blame Clinton for accepting donations from “big banks,”—the cause of the 2007-2008 global financial crisis, subprime mortgage crisis and the aftershock of the Great Recession—believing that if she were to receive such support, she would be unable to make intelligible, logical, lucid or comprehensive political decisions that would benefit the American people.
Sure, Hillary Clinton has received plenty of endowments from people who work on Wall Street, and has been compensated scores of capital in speaking fees from Wall Street corporations. Nevertheless, according to OpenSecrets.org, 3.9 percent of her contributions have come from people who work on Wall Street and supposedly with the money raised from SuperPAC, the total number was raised to only 7 percent.
However as Daily Kos reporters note, Clinton has zero jurisdiction in regards to who contributes to those SuperPAC’s and if she doesn’t earn the Democrat presidential nomination, it’s likely that “those SuperPAC’s will spend the same auxiliary capital on whomever the Democratic nominee is.” When quantifying public records, there is zero substantive evidence that she has made any backdoor deals. Could it be that because the public is so used to male-dominated leadership?
The second issue is often in regards to her “X Factor” as a Democratic nominee by comparison to her husband, whose candidacy she played a pivotal role in facilitating during the 1992 and 1996 presidential election periods. During this election cycle, Clinton has drawn additional ire from women, feminists and general voters who either aren’t familiar with her legacy during the 1990s as the First Lady and stateswoman, with many faulting her centrist position as her greatest demerit, or from critics and carpers who believe she isn’t “likable” among young voters.
One could argue no other candidate has experienced such vitriol. To give perspective, when Clinton left her post as Secretary of State, she held a prodigiously wondrous approval rating of 69%, according to at Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll, with a meager 25% condemning of her performance as a leading diplomat.
Still, there seems to be an overwhelming disparagement of Mrs. Clinton as a presidential candidate. When Bill Clinton—who cemented his presidential legacy with a well-adjusted economy, the institution of 22.7 million jobs and 7.7 million people boosted from poverty—was impeached, he was at the peak of his approval ratings (73%) and the nation rallied against former White House intern Monica Lewinsky. Despite recent controversy, Mr. Clinton is still a hit with media, liberals and the conservative right (even after Trump’s below-the-belt allegations). There’s a reason. The charming Mr. Clinton is a brilliant politician able to zero in on the micro, while the no-nonsense Mrs. Clinton gives greater emphasis on the macro. But that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
Not every president is going to be the effortlessly cool political rock star that Mr. Barrack Obama is going to be and when compared to her other peers in varying political parties, Mrs. Clinton’s superpower is her big picture pragmatism and nigh-evangelical fervor of acting on the greater good.
Finally, there’s the clincher: Many believe Mrs. Clinton is not for the common people. According to a Quinnipiac poll conducted in February, 55 percent of voters coast-to-coast stated they do not believe Mrs. Clinton “cares about people like me.” To some she’s a populist who will say and do anything to get elected, but Hillary Clinton grew up around the Civil Rights era, and traveled to see one of her greatest heroes, Martin Luther King, Jr., speak in person, using his words as a litmus for her foray into politics.
After completing law school, Hillary Clinton initially operated as a staff attorney at the Children’s Defense Fund alongside her greatest mentors, a civil rights activist and public interest lawyer Marian Wright Edelman. And while there is some hear-say, Clinton’s platform is more liberal than those of Barrack Obama.
Throughout her career, she has fought for welfare reform, LGBT issues, racial injustice (despite some hiccups) and women’s rights. On a larger scale, when compared to Bernie Sanders who has campigned mostly in white liberal bubbles, she is the only candidate to meet with the mother’s of police and gun violence victims and her platform appears to be the most intrinsic and humanist. Sanders, though a rock star, focuses only on class issues, avoiding deeper discussions about race or women’s rights.
So, why all the Anti-Clinton rhetoric? Are people so desperate for a change that they are willing to vote against their own interests to evade another era of a Clinton-esque New Democrats? Why does the dialogue shift to her husband’s tenure as president when she has proven time and time again that she is more than capable to push forward with her own agenda?
And is the world ready for a true progressive candidate who is also female? We’ll see during the general election.