American Politics: The Knives Come Out For The ‘Ruthless Lady’

Politics can be a mean business. When money is flying around politicians like confetti, it gets really nasty and the slashing knives come out.

Recently, Gov. Chris Christie got “the treatment.” We don’t yet know for sure if he deserved it, but opponents don’t care about that – all they want to do is destroy.

It now appears that the knives are coming out for Hillary Clinton and it appears she may get the Gov. Chris Christie treatment in the press. When Chris Christie got a dose of “the treatment” from the press, his polling numbers went south – fast.

This week, we heard that an Iowa SuperPAC was starting up again, preparing for a possible Hillary Clinton run for the presidency. It is also suggested that February 9, 2014 may be the start of the “Anti-Hillary for President Movement.”

The thing about politics is that figuratively, a lot of people end up with knives in their backs – often these people at one time were friends. And so it seems with Diane Blair, a former adviser and Clinton “friend,” who died in 2000. Blair had an archive of confidential memos and documents, and the Washington Free Beacon aired some of that dirty laundry on Sunday.

The Washington Free Beacon published 40 of Diane Blair’s documents, that set the tone of Hillary Clinton as “ruthless lady,” according to internal democratic party papers.

Here is an example from May 12, 1992, when Bill Clinton was running for president. Diane Blair sent out a memo called “Research on Hillary Clinton.” Two pollsters for Bill Clinton’s presidential campaign conceded that Arkansas voters “liked” Hillary, but they said, “they also fear that only someone too politically ambitious, too strong, and too ruthless could survive such controversy so well.”

It seems you can’t win, whether you are tough or weak.

The pollsters also said, “What voters find slick in Bill Clinton, they find ruthless in Hillary.”

That was only the beginning of the late Diane Blair’s pointed comments and documents – there is much more. After Diane Blair, a political science professor, died in 2000, her husband donated her papers to the University of Arkansas library, and they have been publicly available since 2010.

It is obvious that Hillary Clinton has always held strong opinions, and high-level White House staff heard those opinions on policy and presidential appointments while she was first lay, in the White House.

One memo dated Feb. 23, 1993 said, “Hillary adamant; Bill must devise new outside strategy; we’re getting killed.”

That memo also indicated her opinion of a spineless Congress: “Congress a bunch of whiners; no courage. Her health care plan will save billions in long run but will cost big $ up front. Members of Congress don’t work; only 3 days a week; only care for re-election. Bill clearly not very happy w. his own crew and advisers. Hillary urging hard ball.”

A Blair memo on May 19, 1993 indicates Hillary’s disdain for the press and Bill Clinton’s staff: “HC says press has big egos and no brains, that the White House is just going to have to work them better; that her staff has figured it out and would be glad to teach Bill’s staff.”

Bill Clinton also came in for a shellacking, on May 17, 1994, “She keeps trying to shape things up, knows what’s wrong, but Bill can’t fire people, exert discipline, and punish leakers. Never had strategy for Whitewater, troopers, Paula Jones, inability to organize, make tough choices, drives her nuts.”

Hillary knew how to really upset her opponents, too. After a phone call between Hillary and Blair, after Bill Clinton’s impeachment, Blair wrote, “Hillary sounded very up, almost jolly … Told me how she and Bill and Chelsea had been to church, to a Chinese restaurant, to a Shakespeare play, greeted everywhere with wild applause and cheers this, she said is what drives their adversaries totally nuts, that they don’t bend, do not appear to be suffering.”

On the upside for Hillary, the Free Beacon said “The records paint a complex portrait of Hillary Clinton, revealing her to be a loyal friend, devoted mother, and a cutthroat strategist who relished revenge against her adversaries and complained in private that nobody in the White House was ‘tough and mean enough.'”

The day these damning archives were leaked by The Washington Free Beacon, portions of an as-yet unpublished book by U.S. Army Gen. David Petraeus were also leaked, perhaps as a way to shore up Hillary Clinton’s image. According to the leak, Petraeus says he “supports” Hillary’s actions as Secretary of State following the Benghazi attack on Sept 11th, 2012.

Bring out the rosettes, ribbons, posters and billboards. Let the campaign of 2016 begin.

Dwight L. Schwab Jr. is a moderate conservative who looks at all sides of a story, then speaks his mind. He has written more than 3500 national political and foreign affairs columns. His BS in journalism from the University of Oregon, with minors in political science and American history stands him in good stead for his writing.


Dwight has 30-years in the publishing industry, including ABC/Cap Cities and International Thomson. His first book, “Redistribution of Common Sense – Selective Commentaries on the Obama Administration 2009-2014,” was published in July, 2014. “The Game Changer – America’s Most Stunning Presidential Election in History,” was published in April 2017.


Dwight is a native of Portland, Oregon, and now a resident of the San Francisco Bay Area.