Analysis: Early Thoughts on Hillary's Health Incident

Posted: Sep 11, 2016 2:55 PM

Several immediate reactions to the incident Matt has been covering all day:

(1) I'm glad Hillary is apparently feeling better.  The "spontaneous" hug from a little girl outside Chelsea's apartment was nice campaign stagecraft.

(2) Unless you're a medical doctor who treated her, or have direct knowledge of the situation, you don't know anything specific about Clinton's health.  Diagnosing her from a short clip is irresponsible.

(3) The video is undeniably shocking and unsettling to watch:

(4) Pretending that this is nothing is ridiculous.  She very clearly buckled and fainted/collapsed, as members of her staff and security detail held her up -- otherwise, she would have gone down.  No doubt.  

(5) She was wearing heavy clothing and was standing for a lengthy period of time, but it was not unusually hot or overly humid in New York City this morning.  "Overheated" could plausibly be the extent of the story.  But it might not be.

(6) Her team stonewalling and ditching the press for hours (then blocking them from traveling with her after her "recovery") is not a good way to quell rumors or speculation.  Most Americans are already inclined not to believe what this woman says.

(7) If McCain's health was fair game in 2008, hers is now, especially after today.  Taken separately, Hillary's history of a blood clot, a concussion (which she herself raised in her FBI interview, in connection with missing or not recalling data security briefings), coughing fits (which I see as a non-issue), and now today's episode might be reasonably dismissed as isolated incidents.  Taken together, it's entirely fair to ask more questions.  

(8) In the interests of transparency, both major party nominees should release full medical records -- this does not count -- and Donald Trump should make his tax returns public, particularly in light of a new blockbuster Washington Post story exposing his "charitable" foundation.