The directive may have come from Hillary’s campaign or it may have been doctor’s orders, but boilin’ Bill Clinton has been officially benched. Here’s the International Herald Tribune:
He is being kept as far from the media as possible to prevent any more of the red-faced, finger-wagging tirades and freelance political commentary that polls say cost Hillary Rodham Clinton a lot of support, particularly among black voters.
So what audiences in venues like Lancaster, a working-class town of 33,000 about 35 miles, about 55 kilometers, southeast of Columbus, are seeing is a subdued and substantive former president going on at length about Iraq, health care, education, job creation and what he portrays as the multiple sins of the Bush administration.
Okay, not benched—sent down to the minors. It certainly took the Clintons long enough to face up to the fact that Bill was not being received with the public adoration they thought his due. The Tribune reports that in a December New York Times/CBS News Poll, 44 percent of those polled said they were more likely to vote for Hillary because of her husband and 7 seven percent said he made them less likely to do so. In the latest such poll, respondents were split evenly at 22 percent in each category.
Since Bill has been demoted from the main room to the lounge, Hillary has made the mistake of embodying the traits that seemingly turned her husband’s fans against him: the divisiveness, sense of entitlement, scolding, baiting, and general propensity for playing the victim don’t look much better on her. I don’t think it’s outrageous to suggest that if she too went into hiding for a while, her numbers might jump.