Did Bill's Campaigning Help or Hurt?

Clarice Feldman
Much is being made out of very ambiguous poll which CNN (and many named pundits are citing with authority) suggesting Bill's campaigning hurt Hillary in South Carolina. Tom Maguire argues persuasively that that is bunk.

Whether Tom is right or CNN is, do not expect Bill to vanish from Hill's campaign bus. The best take on his character was written by Florence King in 1993 and republished in The Florence King Reader, St. Martin's Griffin ed., 1996 (Bill Clinton:Masobear, pp. 359-365 at p. 364):
"As long as Clinton is campaigning he can reassure himself that people like him, but when the campaign stops, so does the reassurance. Ensconced at last in the White House, but painfully aware that fifty-seven percent of the electorate had voted for somebody else, he needed another kissy-fit right away. Did we like him, really like him? He had to find out somehow, and so he set out to test our love.

"It took Jimmy Carter a couple of years to make people wonder if he had a screw loose, but Clinton took only a week.His headlong plunge into the issue of gays in the military was described by the media as 'puzzling','baffling','reckless,''obsessive', and 'self-destructive.'Next he tackled the defiticit issue by floating the idea of cuts in Social Security, which Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan called a 'death wish.' Then he risked a national panic by attempting to lift the ban on immigrants infected with the AIDS virus, which the Senate defeated. And now he's threatening , via his supine relationship with Sin Tax Hillary, to force forty-five million smokers into nicotine-withdrawal fits to see if they love him enough not to storm the White House and stick his head on a pike."



Much is being made out of very ambiguous poll which CNN (and many named pundits are citing with authority) suggesting Bill's campaigning hurt Hillary in South Carolina. Tom Maguire argues persuasively that that is bunk.

Whether Tom is right or CNN is, do not expect Bill to vanish from Hill's campaign bus. The best take on his character was written by Florence King in 1993 and republished in The Florence King Reader, St. Martin's Griffin ed., 1996 (Bill Clinton:Masobear, pp. 359-365 at p. 364):
"As long as Clinton is campaigning he can reassure himself that people like him, but when the campaign stops, so does the reassurance. Ensconced at last in the White House, but painfully aware that fifty-seven percent of the electorate had voted for somebody else, he needed another kissy-fit right away. Did we like him, really like him? He had to find out somehow, and so he set out to test our love.

"It took Jimmy Carter a couple of years to make people wonder if he had a screw loose, but Clinton took only a week.His headlong plunge into the issue of gays in the military was described by the media as 'puzzling','baffling','reckless,''obsessive', and 'self-destructive.'Next he tackled the defiticit issue by floating the idea of cuts in Social Security, which Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan called a 'death wish.' Then he risked a national panic by attempting to lift the ban on immigrants infected with the AIDS virus, which the Senate defeated. And now he's threatening , via his supine relationship with Sin Tax Hillary, to force forty-five million smokers into nicotine-withdrawal fits to see if they love him enough not to storm the White House and stick his head on a pike."