Politicians love to be talked about. It gets their name out into the minds of the electorate, and it often widens their reach. The caveat, of course, is that the talk must be positive, otherwise, they don’t want it to be heard at all.
Hillary Clinton is about to become the most talked-about female presidential candidate since Geraldine Feraro. Ferraro looked unstoppable, especially when she was chosen to be running mate for Walter Mondale in 1984. The positive polling soon faded away as questions about her family finances arose, and they were beaten in a landslide.
The past is often instructive, and back here in the present, we’ve heard from Republican National Chairman Reince Priebus, the man with the unusual name. Priebus was on “Meet the Press” on Sunday. He told the show’s host, David Gregory, that he has doubts about Hillary Clinton running for the presidency in 2016.
It’s difficult to find sound reasoning in his volunteered statement.
To wind Hillary up a bit more, he said no GOP candidate fears her. “Given the month she just had, I doubt whether or not she will run for president in 2016. I know a lot of people around her want her to run, and I think that they’re purposely creating this environment around here which is causing us to talk about her today,” Priebus said.
Democrats say Priebus has become a “drive-by antagonist,” because he doesn’t always make a lot of sense and his course seems like part of a weak strategy. Some suspect he may be trying to take the heat off Republican strategist Karl Rove, who stumbled through accusations about Hillary Clinton’s mental health earlier in the week.
Bill Clinton had fun with Rove’s tortured comments, shrugging them off by saying Hillary was in “better shape” than him. He did acknowledge that a candidate’s health is fair game.
Hillary Clinton had more important things to worry about than Karl Rove’s remarks. Her mishandling of the 2012 terror attacks in Benghazi, Libya now have a lot of people jumping up and down, and it is more than her ridiculous and insensitive “What difference, at this point does it make” comment. Now we have heard what she did – or rather did not do – about the Boko Haram terrorist organization, which recently kidnapped nearly 300 Nigerian teenage girls from their school and is now threatening to sell them.
As Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton refused to designate the al-Qaida affiliated Boko Haram, as a terror organization. Since she left the State Department, Boko Haram has been designated.
Priebus flagged Hillary Clinton’s age as an issue. She will turn 69 years old two weeks before the 2016 election. Ronald Reagan was only eight months older than that when he ran for office in 1980, so while she is not ready for the scrap heap, her age coupled with recent health problems may be a concern.
Priebus also said her chequered history will be an issue, should she decide to run. “I think Hillary is a known product. Actually, I think it’s sometimes worse running against a blank slate. Hillary has decades of history for us to explore.”
When David Gregory raised Ms. Clinton’s health again, Priebus said, “I’m not a doctor, what I do know is the issue will come up as it does for any person running for president. What I think is going to make her rethink whether she should actually run for president?” Shortly after, he said, “She’s made a series of bad choices.”
Reince Priebus was never likely to be invited to the Clinton Family Christmas party, but it seems he wanted to set that idea in stone.