Open Thread: A Woman’s Place Is in… the Resistance

“I’m now back to being an activist citizen and part of the resistance,” Clinton said in her sit-down with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour. At other events she has heralded the work of small organizations that have grown in response to Trump.

“Activism is more important than ever, and it’s working, from the women’s marches across the country and around the globe to helping to bring down the Republicans’ terrible health care bill,” Clinton said earlier this year in Texas. “But we have to keep going.”

The organization — Onward Together, an homage to her campaign slogan — will look to identify groups that could benefit from outside funding. Clinton will act as the connector, said one source, bringing donors to these groups and helping raise money for them, too…

The group will have a small staff, including the few aides that are still working with Clinton day-to-day, but the former secretary of state is in the process of finding a board of directors. Dennis Cheng, Clinton’s campaign finance director and longtime fundraiser, and Judith McHale, the former secretary of state’s deputy at the State Department, are both currently working with Clinton on the project…

A number of top colleges have reached out to Clinton about using them as a venue for her future advocacy, said people who have talked to the former Democratic nominee. While a decision is far from imminent, Clinton did spend time earlier this month at both Wellesley College, her alma mater, and Harvard University, where she sat for an extended interview for the American Secretaries of State Project.

Clinton has also made clear at a series of events that she is not done with political life and hopes to help Democrats win back the House and Senate in 2018.

Aides and advisers say she is not going to run for president again, but doesn’t want to be silent in the coming years.

Some will say that she should’ve taken a vow of poverty and gone from rural enclave to rust belt town, letting Trump voters throw rocks at her… but I prefer that she keep fighting.








HRClinton — Can’t Win for Losing

Dan Drezner, in the Washington Post:

[W]henever this topic comes up, I feel like gouging my eyes out with a dull spoon there’s a key point that always goes unacknowledged: from the outset of the general election campaign, Clinton faced a more difficult challenge than is commonly understood.

As I pointed out last year and as the April 2017 issue of PS: Political Science & Politics notes, the fundamentals of the 2016 campaign had the race as pretty close to a toss-up. Economic growth in the first half of 2016 was pretty weak. The incumbent party was trying to win a third consecutive presidential campaign. Both of these facts meant that, despite Obama’s personal popularity, the fundamentals of the campaign were far from a Democratic cake-walk…

To be fair, the tightness of the fundamental race heightens the magnitude of each mistake made by Clinton and her campaign. But I think the general election polling numbers mistakenly gave the impression that Clinton’s victory was inexorable when the reality was more murky. Despite Obama’s personal popularity, the simple fact is that the same party has won three consecutive presidential elections only once since 1952. In 2000, Al Gore was running on a stronger economy and still barely eked out a victory in the popular vote. Clinton faced a more difficult path…








Thursday Morning Open Thread: “Make This Fight Your Fight”

Some people are gonna be disappointed she didn’t call the other candidate in the 2016 Dem primaries out, but that’s not Sen. Warren’s style.

(I was originally gonna post Maddow’s latest interview with Sen. Warren, but FYWP isn’t cooperating.)

Apart from continuing to fight all the good fights, what’s on the agenda for the day?

And a reminder, because I’m allergy-addled and cranky, from Mr. Charles P. Pierce — “Why Trump Won”:

[O]ne of the more interesting sidelights of what certainly will be a deluge of post-mortems regarding the 2016 presidential campaign is the widely held notion that Hillary Rodham Clinton was gifted with a uniquely easy opponent. This idea is central to the narrative that holds that HRC’s campaign was a uniquely bad one, and she a uniquely bad candidate. She couldn’t even beat a reality-show star who doesn’t know North Korea from East Hampton. True, there were a number of things that HRC and her campaign did badly, but they did get three million more votes than did Trump, which counts for something…

Consider this: Whatever you may think of how he won the presidency, and we’ll get to that in a minute, Trump took on a Republican field composed of what was alleged to be the best that party had to offer, the deepest part of its allegedly deep bench, and he utterly destroyed it. Scott Walker, popular scourge of middle-school history teachers, never even made it to the starting gate. Rand Paul, brogressive libertarian heartthrob, was reduced to invisibility. Chris Christie was demolished as a national political figure. Marco Rubio—The Republican Savior, according to Time—is still wandering the political landscape looking, as Abraham Lincoln said of General Hooker after Chancellorsville, like a duck that’s been hit on the head. And, when he finally got around to it, he took the heart out of Tailgunner Ted Cruz in Indiana, alleging on the morning of the primary that Cruz’s father hobnobbed in New Orleans with Lee Harvey Oswald.

That Trump never paid a price in the eyes of his voters for that kind of meretricious goonery is the best evidence there is that, in 2016, anyway, he was in every sense a formidable political force. And, let it not be forgotten that he brought with him a Republican Senate, a Republican House, and massive gains out in the states as well.

Moreover, and I owe a hat tip to Scott Lemieux here, it’s likely in retrospect that Trump’s plan of action, while unconventional in the extreme and relentlessly eccentric, also was based in a kind of mad logic. There really was a big slice of the electorate, concentrated in states that were vital in the Electoral College, that was uniquely susceptible to Trump’s appeal. He and his people spotted it and campaigned accordingly.

The myth of Trump’s vulnerability has two sources, I think. The first is the apparently irresistible impulse in some quarters to score some sort of final victory over the Clinton family… The other is the reluctance of Republicans—and of the elite political classes at large—to accept the reality that Trump is merely a cruder manifestation of the political prion disease that has afflicted conservatism and the Republican Party since it first ate the monkeybrains 35 years ago. It was all leading to someone like Trump, and something like last year’s election.

So many people had been driven away from the voting booths — deliberately or not — and so many other people at both ends of the political spectrum had allowed themselves the luxury of believing that their votes were tickets to an entertaining spectacle… that all it took was a few million rubles’ worth of monkey-mischief and the deliberate collusion of the FBI to hand the Oval Office over the Donald Effing Trump. But none of the guilty parties, least of all in Our Major Media, are willing to accept their share of the blame; ergo, it must be That Woman’s fault. Mom should’ve made us not drink a mixture of bleach and ammonia, what a horrible failure she is for assuming that telling us it was poison & we’d regret it later would be enough to deter us!

That’s not how it works, fellas. You’re (putative) grownups now, and you have to take responsibility for your own failures. And, no, those of us with better sense are not gonna ‘get over it’ any time in the immediate future, nor make the mistake of trusting you further than we can see you.








Saturday Morning Open Thread: Same As It Ever Was

And yet… from NYMag‘s The Cut, “7 Important Things Hillary Clinton Said at the Women in the World Summit”:

In her first public interview since the election, Hillary Clinton sat down [Thursday] with the New York Times’ Nicholas Kristof at Tina Brown’s Women in the World Summit to address a number of topics: her emotions after November 8, the first 100 days of Donald Trump’s presidency, and the ongoing attack on women’s rights around the world…

She did get a kick out of the health-care bill mess.
“I will confess to this: having listened to them talk about repeal and replace for 7 years now, they had not a clue what that meant; they had no idea. I don’t know that any of them had ever even read the bill – read the law, understood how it worked. It was so obvious. Health care is complicated, right? They don’t know what to do, and I do admit that was somewhat gratifying.”…

She believes women’s rights are under attack around the world.
“The targeting of women — which is what is going on — is absolutely beyond any political agenda. There is something else happening here. So the global gag rule, that bounces back and forth between Republican and Democrats, but the way they wrote it this time — not like Bush did, not like Reagan did — this time would be to remove all aid if there is some kind of alleged breach. Because you provide family planning services, but somebody says to a woman desperate to get an abortion because she has been told she will die if she bears another child so then you try to help her and you lose everything. And then you follow that with the U.N. population fund … The impact that those dollars have is saving women and children’s lives and helping women have a better shot at a future… This is not just the right and moral position for the United States to take; this in our national security interest. The more we support women, the more we support democracy … Women’s issues are national security issues around the world.”

She’s still not sure why everyone hated her so much, but she has stopped caring.
“I am not perfect, everybody knows that by now … Sometimes I don’t know quite how to fix what they are concerned about. But I try. And so, I take it seriously, but I don’t any longer, and haven’t for a long time taken it personally. Because part of the attacks … part of the bullying and part of the name calling — and that has certainly become more pervasive — is to crush your spirit and feel inadequate. And I just refused to do that — and that infuriated everyone.”

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Apart from continuing to #Resist, what’s on the agenda for the weekend?

Oh, incidentally… HRClinton’s favorite Trump .gif:








Friday Morning Open Thread: She Persists

… And she hopes we can, too.

What’s on the agenda as we wait for the latest Trumpstuntin’ dung doc drop?
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Speaking of persisting…