Among Democrats, the Clinton name is starting to stink
You'd think this would be catbird-seat time for Bill Clinton.
His ideological style of Democrats – the moderates – are winning primaries and special elections these days in Congress. And unlike President Obama, Clinton and his presidency are remembered for prosperity, including all the jobs that were created. Theoretically, that's something Democrats should be able to point to with pride, given all the embarrassment the Obama record presents in stark contrast to President Trump.
Somehow, that's not happening.
Democrats are moving away from Bill Clinton like a bad smell. In New Hampshire, which up until now has been one of Clinton's strongest states, a name inextricably linked to some of Clinton's strongest political successes, as the Boston Globe notes, grassroots Democrats have yanked Clinton's name from the masthead of a big Democratic Party fundraiser, changing the whole thing to the hoary name of Eleanor Roosevelt.
According to the Globe:
New Hampshire was the state that made Bill Clinton the comeback kid in 1992, propelling him to the presidency. Sixteen years later, Hillary Clinton won the state's first-in-the-nation presidential primary in an upset.
And two years ago, in honor of the former president's legacy, the New Hampshire Democratic Party became the only state party the country to name a major fund-raising dinner after Bill Clinton.
But on Tuesday, New Hampshire Democrats reversed course and announced they had voted to walk away from the Clinton name for the annual fall fete. The event once known as the Kennedy-Clinton dinner, which Bill Clinton headlined as recently as 2014, will now be called the Eleanor Roosevelt Dinner.
For all these decades, the name had been fine with them. But now...
It's a fall that coincides with Democratic Party operatives' efforts to separate themselves from Hillary Clinton, who's been a millstone around their neck lately, and who they've repeatedly said they wish would just go away.
Turns out they don't want "the big he" around, either. That's a loss of clout.
Maybe that's a cumulative thing, given that from the Democrats' point of view, as I noted here, the Clintons have selfishly drained Democratic funds away from the central mission of electing candidates toward themselves, rigged the Democratic primaries in Hillary Clinton's favor, and made themselves a public relations liability for Democrats through Hillary's continuous expressed disdain for the electorate. They aren't exactly a good thing for Democrats as they seek to rebuild from the rubble of Obamadom.
Bill makes things even worse by being synonymous with straight-up corruption, managing that even out of office – and all you have to do is yell "Haiti" to remember it. Bill Clinton was on the money end of Hillary Clinton's sale of access to the State Department through the Clinton Foundation, and that's just a coda to all the Clinton presidential-era scandals with Chinese campaign money, which we are still feeling the effects of today as China builds up its military. Clinton also was the one who sold stays in the Lincoln bedroom.
And maybe even more important for Democrats, the #MeToo movement has brought new attention to Clinton's Dionysian side, not just in the form of Monica Lewinsky, or the innocent women such as Kathleen Willey and Juanita Broaddrick, whom he harassed and raped, with Hillary at his side as his enabler. There's the Bill of today who seems to be continuing the same old party in his pants, what with his "Lolita Express" trips to the Dominican Republic with a guy convicted of pedophilia and his Arkansas cathouse lifestyle away from Hillary. Ew.
That makes his good-economy legacy a distant memory, and the Democrats who are following his pattern of getting a foot in by playing moderate just as eager to distance themselves from him as the radicals.
Now they're taking his name off a big fundraising dinner in New Hampshire in favor of Eleanor Roosevelt, the ghost Hillary Clinton used to "commune" with, just as Joe Stalin would remove the faces of those he purged from photographs. That has got to sting.
It's tough being Bill Clinton, wanting to be corrupt yet also wanting to be popular. At a time when he should be making his comeback, like an oily Hollywood talk show host, he's actually on the outs with Democrats and watching his name being erased from the monuments.
Knowing how the Clintons operate, and knowing how they never intend to go away, one can safely conclude that they aren't going to let this stand. There will be payback to the Democrats for this, and the Clintons will make it miserable. For Republicans, all we have to do is have some popcorn ready.
Image Credit: Jayu via Flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0, Wikimedia CC BY-SA 3.0.