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Donna Brazile: See the Light

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of

WASHINGTON -- After over two decades of writing about Bill and Hillary Clinton, it is pretty dispiriting to see how my friends the Democrats have ignored my findings of the rapacious couple. I rather like the two-party system. Yet ever since the Clintons came to national attention -- and to the attention of various law enforcement officials -- they have done little for the Democratic Party except enrich themselves, a matter about which I have actually written several books. Well, all I can say is that I tried, but it's all for naught.

Even by the last presidential election, the Democrats had lost something like 1,000 seats around the country under President Obama, though they paid little heed while schmoozing with their friends in the media in Washington, D.C. Even Hillary Clinton, the inevitable one, lost, and to a man who had never run for high office in all of his 70 years. The Democrats got no wake-up call. They blamed it on the Russians, and today's Russians are not even communists. It is all pretty depressing.

If the Democrats fail to rid themselves of the incorrigible Clintons soon, there may well be no Democratic Party left to abandon in 2020. If they had only begun to take my writing seriously back in 1996, they might have still controlled thousands of seats of power that have since gone to the treacherous Republicans. America might still be a two-party country.

Yet I am not completely disconsolate. There suddenly appears on the scene a reader of my books, and she sits atop the Democratic Party. Her name is Donna Brazile, and she recently served as interim chair of the Democratic National Committee. She is also a longtime Democratic strategist and a television commentator of great gifts. Whenever I have seen her, she has struck me as thoughtful and open-minded, or at least relatively open-minded. Now she has written a book, "Hacks: The Inside Story of the Break-Ins and the Breakdowns That Put Donald Trump in the White House." It is quite good, though if you have been reading my writing for two decades, there is little in her book that will surprise you.

Nonetheless, coming from a member of the Democratic hierarchy, the book is sheer revelation. The Party may be waking up.

Among the book's disclosures is the revelation that President Barack Obama left the party bankrupt. Moreover, the Clintons made an arrangement in August 2015 to take over the DNC while in control of Hillary Clinton's campaign. That would be well before Clinton won the nomination over poor old Sen. Bernie Sanders. His subsequent contest was apparently a charade.

The agreement, Brazile writes, "specified that in exchange for raising money and investing in the DNC, Hillary would control the party's finances, strategy, and all the money raised." And she goes on to say: "Her campaign had the right of refusal of who would be the party communications director, and it would make final decisions on all other staff. The DNC also was required to consult with the campaign about all other staffing, budgeting, data, analytics, and mailings." This, the author says, was "not illegal, but it sure looked unethical." Ms. Brazile, that has been the Clintons' modus operandi since Arkansas. Did I not try to tell you?

The Clintons have come up with nothing new since their days back in Arkansas, a state that has become evermore Republican since they headed up north. Every time Bill Clinton was up for election, the shifty loans, the desperate ploys for more money and the no-holds-barred lunges for votes began. It was the beginning of what we now call Clinton Inc. Brazile speaks of the mood of "self-satisfaction and inevitability" around the Hillary Clinton campaign headquarters in 2016. It was the same fated atmosphere I remarked on in 2008. In fact, the Clinton crowd ran the same campaign in 2016 as Clinton ran in 2008, and the same outcome was produced: She was defeated in both races by beginners.

What is rather amazing is all the exalted claims that have been made for her as a politician and a policy wonk. At one point in 2016, then-President Obama was calling her "the most qualified presidential candidate in history." Actually, the exalted claims have endured since her Arkansas days. Remember Bill Clinton saying a vote for him was a vote for two geniuses, "two for the price of one"? Hillary Clinton still has credulous supporters out there claiming she is a genius. Well, with the arrival of Ms. Brazile, we finally do have "two for the price of one." Both Bill and Hillary are about to retire. Where does that leave the Democratic Party? Does it leave it as bankrupt as former President Obama left it? I am afraid it does.

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