Ken Blackwell

You don’t have to share Sportin’ Life’s skeptical view of the Bible to chuckle at his boldness in taking on the conventional wisdom of his day. This tune from Gershwin’s Broadway hit Porgy ‘n’ Bess was a show-stopper for the legendary Cab Calloway.

And it’s the response I have to give when I hear people say Hillary Clinton is “inevitable” in 2016: It ain’t necessarily so. Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick (D) is not sure she’s so inevitable. And even if she is, it’s not necessarily a good thing for people to say that about her.

Gov. Patrick told CNN’s “State of the Union” recently that he “worries” about all this inevitability talk of Hillary. Let’s read between the lines:

She is an enormously capable candidate and leader, but I do worry about the inevitability because I think it's off-putting to the average voter. And I think that was an element of her campaign the last time. As an enthusiastic Democrat, I just hope that the people around her pay attention to that this time around.

That’s about as deft a putdown as you could ask for. Gov. Patrick is nothing if not a skilled inside puncher. Notice how he reminds viewers of “her campaign the last time.”

Folks, she’s been around this track before.

Then, there’s the sly reference to “the people around her.” Don’t mention anyone in particular. Whatever you do, don’t mention Bill. Just let “the people around her” phrase hang out there. How well did they do the job for her last time?

“Pay attention? What? Clinton operatives inattentive? Whoever charged that against those veterans of the famed War Room? If they were not paying attention back in 2008, maybe it was because they were reading this devastating article from Todd Purdom in Vanity Fair.

I recommend this in-depth reportage to all my friends—liberals and conservatives. “The Comeback Id” is more than a dog whistle to liberal donors, consultants and activists; it’s a foghorn. It bellows forth:

BEWARE! Rocks and shoals ahead! The sub-head is even more direct: Bubba Trouble.

Purdom is warning his fellow liberals that with Hillary you get Bill and with Bill you get more baggage than Samsonite has. The late Jack Germond sternly disapproved of President Bill Clinton’s White House dalliances. That was not because Germond disapproved of dalliances. He thought they were “wonderful.” But he believed that when you are President, a lot of people are depending on you to deliver the goods.

Ken Blackwell

Ken Blackwell, a contributing editor at, is a senior fellow at the Family Research Council and the American Civil Rights Union and is on the board of the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty. He is the co-author of the bestseller The Blueprint: Obama’s Plan to Subvert the Constitution and Build an Imperial Presidency, on sale in bookstores everywhere..
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