I mentioned Over There how bad of a candidate Hillary Clinton is and got a fair amount of pushback. If she’s so bad how come she keeps winning? The answer involves quite a bit of good fortune that doesn’t actually reflect on her capabilities as a candidate. She has, with only one exception (2006 re-election), underperformed in every race that she’s run. She’s just been in a position that she’s been able to afford to. In 2000, she was elected to the senate as a carpetbagger… and underperformed Al Gore by five points. But you can do that when you’re running as a Democrat in New York. In 2008, she lost to underdog Barack Obama. In 2016, she had the hardest time fending off Bernie Sanders, who should have been a token challenger. Any one of these performances can be explained away (Obama is really good! She was a carpetbagger against a native! Someone else getting 45% was inevitable!), but taken all together the common thread is her. We can add this election to her list, where if you tilt your head and squint your eyes you can say something about the popular vote or Comey or whatever. But she lost to a man with a 37% approval rating. It’s pretty remarkable. In the end, she was a Martha Coakley who chose less bad races.

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4 Responses to On Hillary

  1. Michael Drew says:

    Here, here.

  2. gregiank says:

    Clinton clearly failed. As i noted over there it seems Hill will end up with a 1-2% pop vote victory. For one thing that isn’t far off from the polls which people have deided were terrbile. On the PV they appear to have been fine. Of course there is the electoral vote thingee where she got swamped. Lots of isses with the PV v EV thing. It’s bad for a democracy where the person with a solid, if tight, PV win loses. Bad kind of bad.

    Clinton didn’t turn out people which is all her. But this also seems like a real low proboblity event. I’m guessing its very unlikely to win the EV by a lot, or even a little, while losing the PV by 1-2%. That doesn’t change the tasks teh D’s need to work on for the next elections. But the story that the WWC rose up to give it to trumpy isn’t quite right. Its very incomplete. We’ll be hearing a lot more about the PV.

  3. trumwill says:

    The story is definitely more complicated than the Revolt of the White Working Class, just as it was more complicated than the Coalition of the Ascendant. I favor going with a national popular vote, but since we don’t, these are the rules of the game. Trump got close enough for an inverted result, the result inverted. None of this should have happened.

    The problem with looking at wins and losses is that you can overestimate your strength by the fact that you won, even if you didn’t perform well. Which is Clinton’s career, in a nutshell. It’s like in college football where Arkansas beats Louisiana-Monroe by 10 points. If you’re a Razorback and you come out of that thinking it was a good game, Texas A&M is going to break you.

  4. gregiank says:

    Yeah the D’s prescription for what they need to do remains the same, they need changes that have been overdue. But their electoral prospects have hope even in two years. If Clinton had done better this odd result wouldn’t have happened so it is on her. D’s should take some heart but not so much they don’t make major changes.

    R’s will push, and get, all the stuff they want. The forward thinkers should be very worried. They got a win with a minority which isn’t likely to happen again.

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