Carol Platt Liebau

This morning, excerpts of "HRC: State Secrets and the Rebirth of Hillary Clinton" -- a new book by Jonathan Allen of Politico and Amie Parners of The Hill -- appear in (surprise!) The Hill.

The excerpt details the score-settling list kept by Clinton staffers and intimates who, along with the Clintons, experienced the sting of perceived betrayal when those for whom they had done political favors deserted Hillary in 2008 and instead endorsed Barack Obama. At the top of the list? Missouri's own Claire McCaskill (who earns a bipartisan distinction -- of sorts -- as she is despised not only by the Clintons but also by those on the other side of the aisle).

Even as some politicians (like Senators Schumer and Dayton and, pathetically, even McCaskill) move toward the Clintons in an effort to consolidate support around Hillary, this book does her no favors. Although their partisans might think releasing information about their ability to wreak political vengeance might intimidate otherwise-timid colleagues into supporting Hillary, there's a great chance it will backfire.

That's because everyone who didn't support Hillary in 2008 now knows without a doubt that those surrounding her -- and the Clintons themselves -- have neither forgiven nor forgotten. That includes those who may have helped Obama on the sly, but must now worry that she knows and will punish them for it. Rather than frightening them into supporting her now, that realization rather makes them desperate to keep her from attaining a position where's she's able to administer the payback of which she (and her team) seem to be dreaming.

Taken together, all of this means that Brian Schweitzer (and other putative Democrat challengers) may be the recipients of the same kind of whispered encouragement that Harry Reid (now billing himself as Hillary's "biggest fan") offered Barack Obama in 2006.


Carol Platt Liebau

Carol Platt Liebau is an attorney, political commentator and guest radio talk show host based near New York. Learn more about her new book, "Prude: How the Sex-Obsessed Culture Hurts Young Women (and America, Too!)" here.