On election day 2016, Donald Trump's unfavorability rating among American voters -- not theoretically, but among the people who actually turned out to vote -- was a whopping and unprecedented 60 percent. Hillary Clinton, who'd outspent Trump by roughly a two-to-one margin, lost to him. That was an extraordinary feat, but she somehow managed it. She's been relentlessly blame-storming ever since, despite occasionally insisting that she "takes responsibility" for her loss. Her actions make clear, however, that she doesn't believe that her historic loss is her fault. As Katie, Lauretta and Matt have noted, Mrs. Clinton uncorked a string of bitter excuses for her loss at a forum in India, all of which are familiar by now. Let's walk through them. First, she boasted that she won the cool, forward-thinking parts of America, whereas Trump's "backwards"-looking campaign won him the "middle of the country:"
The RNC's tweet alleges that she explicitly called the Heartland "backwards," but that's not accurate. That word was applied to Trump's slogan and ideas. But her implication was quite clear. She juxtaposed the "diverse" and "dynamic" areas of the country that she'd carried with the rest of America, to which Trump supposedly appealed with abject backwardness -- with success. Perhaps it's easier to sniff at millions of people if you never bother to spend any time with them (click that link for yet another pitiful excuse). She also tossed in the stat about GDP, which is an interesting metric for a Democrat to rely upon, given the party's ritual demonizing of success and demagoguery against the very corporations and "millionaires and billionaires" who drive much of the productivity she's touting. We also didn't hear a lot of Democrats praising the powerhouse island of growth and job creation known as Texas during the tepid Obama recovery. The Lone Star State pursued the opposite approach to Obama/Hillary economic policies and nearly single-handedly kept the US economy's numbers afloat for a number of years in the previous administration. Does that soften the blow of Mitt Romney's loss? But just in case there were any doubt about what Hillary meant with her "backwards" remark, she went further:
“And his whole campaign — 'Make America Great Again' — was looking backward. You know, you didn't like black people getting rights; you don't like women, you know, getting jobs; you don't want to, you know, see that Indian American succeeding more than you are — you know, whatever your problem is, I'm gonna solve it.”
This portion of her comments essentially stated, pretty openly, that Clinton views her voters as more valuable and better human beings than Trump's more, well, deplorable supporters. Her meaning was not lost on the Washington Post: "It's difficult not to read Clinton's comments as an argument that her votes were more valuable — or at least more productive — than were Trump's. Why bring up gross domestic product? Some have suggested Clinton was saying wealthy people's votes should have counted for more. Whether you see it that way or not, she does seem to suggest Trump subsisted on voters who were simply...less sophisticated or advanced." And also racist, sexist xenophobes. This is a grotesque smear of 63 million Americans. Yes, some Trump supporters were motivated by ugly prejudice (just as some number of Clinton backers certainly cast their ballots for 'problematic' reasons). But the vast, vast majority of US voters, across the ideological spectrum, simply selected the person whom they thought would be better for the country, in good faith. I've said and written many times that I believe Donald Trump is unfit for the office he holds, but Mrs. Clinton's nasty, embittered slanders further confirm that she was always unworthy of the job she coveted for her entire adult life. Her broad-brush, ham-fisted impugning of motives is revealing: She's precisely the sneering, entitled, elitist, out-of-touch, dishonest hack that many people have long believed her to be.
But she wasn't finished. Up next came some obnoxious shaming of women who opposed her candidacy. Tens of millions of female voters decided to reject her, and Hillary thinks they did so because the boys instructed them to. Just as she struggles to fathom why someone might have voted for Trump for reasons other than bigotry, she can't comprehend why an independent, enlightened woman may have come to her own conclusion not to vote for Hillary Rodham Clinton:
HRC says white women voted for Trump because their husbands, bosses, sons told them to. @ the India Today Conclave this weekend.— Martha MacCallum (@marthamaccallum) March 12, 2018
'Democrats going back to my husband and even before but just in recent times going back to bill and our candidates and then President Obama, have been losing the white vote including white women. We do not do well with white men and we don’t do well with married, white women,' Clinton said. 'And part of that is an identification with the Republican Party and a sort of ongoing pressure to vote the way that your husband, your boss, your son, whoever, believes you should,' she continued.
This is, needless to say, exceedingly insulting to the legions of free-thinking women of America who determined that Mrs. Clinton didn't deserve their votes. A lot of women want lower taxes, a strong national defense, abortion restrictions, constitutionalist judges, second amendment rights, and a whole litany of things that Hillary Clinton did not represent. But they must have been bullied by men, or whatever. Alas, this brand of cheap identity politics and condescension seems to be emerging as a bona fide talking point:
Hillary has said this before and Michelle Obama said similar: https://t.co/3Ktcyjtc6a It is a full on talking point that women who don’t think in lockstep with them are brainwashed. https://t.co/4Ou16qv2D0— Karol Markowicz (@karol) March 13, 2018
Is it really much of a mystery why polls have shown Mrs. Clinton remaining very unpopular, with voters seemingly uninterested in installing her in a hypothetical do-over election? But wait, there's more. Hillary muses that many white women were prepared to do the "right" thing until that dastardly James Comey intervened:
'What happened in my election is I was on the way to winning white women until former director of the FBI Jim Comey dropped that very ill-advised letter on Oct. the 28th and my numbers just went down… All of a sudden white women who were going to vote for me, and frankly standing up to the men in their lives and the men in their work places were being told, “She’s going to jail, you don’t want to vote for her. It’s going to be terrible you can’t vote for that.” It stopped my momentum and it decreased my vote enough. Because I was ahead and I was winning and I thought I had fought my way back,' she concluded.
Setting aside the well-founded belief that she's fortunate not to have been indicted for criminally negligent conduct connected to her national security-compromising email scandal, the Comey letter was not "ill-advised." New, unexplored information had come to light and Congress was notified of that development. More importantly, every single setback Clinton experienced because of her emails is 100 percent her fault and responsibility. The Democratic Party chose to nominate someone who was under active FBI investigation and who incessantly lied about her actions. Choices have consequences. There's evidence that the Comey letter impacted the election. But the conclusion she draws -- that women were on the brink of "standing up to the men in their lives" until the FBI Director swindled them -- is fantastical, arrogant fiction. Her contempt is palpable. And for a great many Americans, including some of us who were not Trump supporters in 2016, it's very much mutual.