Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s “reemergence” into the media spotlight (did she ever really leave?) is coming in tandem with a return to political reality, however denied by Clintonworld it may be.
This week’s sprawling New York Magazine piece on the First Lady/Senator/would-be POTUS downed by political neophyte/diplomat carries with it first public acknowledgement that she is, in fact, considering a second stab at the Oval Office.
Accompanying a foregone conclusion was the caveat that Clinton is in no rush to make a final decision, a not-so-subtle effort at maintaining apolitical status.
Yet shrouded in the same piece was a quote reeking more of atypical, not apolitical.
“There is nothing they are doing that couldn’t have waited a year,” an anonymous aide said of recently-formed Ready for Hillary and its early paving the way efforts. “Not a single f—king thing.”
What’s absent? A single degree of gratitude, respect for old Clinton hands assisting the group, nor simple dismissal of such outside efforts with the promise of 2016 decisions in their own time.
It was furthermore a direct contradiction of past comments, delivered on the record, applauding the nascent Super PAC’s work.
However small, such anonymous shots across the bow serve little more than reminder of the last time Hillary graced the presidential circuit, her last effort undone in tandem by political winds and internal strife.
Call it one of Clintonworld’s many trappings.
The greater harm is again dealt to Clinton herself, whose efforts at shunning the political realm are almost certainly done with intent of rebranding herself historical pop icon, more akin to Obama 2008 than her past career.
Yet a career carrying such depth won’t be easily whitewashed, nor will the past problems of polarization and demeanor accompanying it all. Joining Clinton’s first media blitz since abdicating the Secretary of State’s post is polling data indicative of just that.
Fresh WSJ/NBC numbers show a precipitous decline in her numbers with independents; just 34 percent of the precious voting bloc now express positive sentiment, compared to 39 percent disapproving. As has been noted, that’s a 17 point drop from December’s 51 percent tally.
That leaves Clinton’s standing with America’s largest political identification on the cusp of 40 percent, with almost a quarter expressing no opinion. Hardly numbers precipitating an electoral landslide.
Bill Clinton may have said America’s most popular Democrats aren’t “nearly as political as everyone thinks,” but it’d be a hard sell to think the drop has yet to be discussed.
Such demurs aside, should Hillary 2016 come to fruition it will face a double whammy of political legacies to account for, those being her own and the Obama administration to which she’s now undeniably linked.
One being a deluge of the past awaiting re-dredging from a Left flank that hasn’t dealt with a competitive presidential primary since her last bid, and the other two-terms of issues fresh with the American people, ranging from Benghazi to Obamacare.
As such, an apolitical Hillary Clinton is neither ongoing nor obtainable, however far her return to the campaign trail may be. It shows through as much in otherwise glowing profiles as polls and the stories that inevitably are going nowhere.
Gravity’s falling in Clintonworld, thanks in part to their own doing and a past that can’t be undone.