Untrustworthy. That’s how the majority of Americans view Hillary Clinton according to a recent CNN ORC poll.
To anyone following the news this is not a surprise. Clinton has been immersed in scandals, whether it is her secret email server, her tenure at the State Department or the Clinton Foundation donors making financial contributions when they had matters before the State Department that includes arms deals. These are serious questions that voters deserve to have answers to, but Clinton and her aides have been dodging the press and voters.
Her campaign has been one of the least accessible during this campaign cycle. It is ironic that her campaign has been touting since her announcement that she was going to hit reset on her relationship with the press, however as we have seen over the past two months that worked about as well as her Bosnia reset, when Clinton publically claimed that she landed in the country under sniper fire.
Now in hopes that we forget about her past two months on the campaign trail, she is re-launching her campaign on Roosevelt Island, but there is no reason to think that this reset will be any different than her previous failed ones. And not for lack of effort, there will be a lot of hype around her latest reboot.
But, this is a campaign not a coronation. Voters and media want to interact with candidates. They want to hear from them on the issues that matter like the Education, Immigration, TPA and Keystone XL pipeline. Yet, the comments she has given haven’t engendered trust from voters. Let’s review a couple:
On the trade agreement while she was Secretary of State she said that the free-trade deal “will bring together economies from across the Pacific.” And, “create a new high standard for multi-lateral free trade.” But, now on the campaign trail she has been quiet, refusing to support the trade deal or not committing to fight it.
On immigration, before coming out further to the left of President Obama on the issue, Clinton said, “We’ve got to do several things and I am, you know, adamantly against illegal immigrants.” And even more recently, when there was an influx of undocumented children at the boarder she said, “We have to send a clear message: Just because your child gets across the border doesn’t mean your child gets to stay.”
Clinton’s statements convey distrust and have given her a reputation of a flip-flopper or a political opportunist. She is constantly changing her stance or being purposefully vague on the issues that matter to voters. Instead of being forthright in handling her scandals she is hiding or committing to photo opportunities or staged press conferences with the “right” optics surrounding her. No wonder a majority of Americans do not trust her and have viable reasons not to. Perhaps she is taking voters for granted again, but that strategy didn’t work well for her in 2008.