The Corner

Politics & Policy

A Wasted Opportunity

Yeah, I get it. Bill needed to “humanize” his wife as all the instant-analysts say. But that seemed to be his whole goal here. And that was a wasted opportunity. 

The simple fact is that everyone expects husbands to speak well of their wives — even Bill Clinton. That was a box he could have checked in 10 minutes of his speech. Instead, he took the 9,072 minutes of his speech (by my rough estimate) reading Hillary Clinton’s C.V. The biggest problem is that the more he talked the weirder it was that he didn’t address the elephant(s) in the room. This is not a great marriage by any normal person’s definition, unless you measure them almost solely on the metric of political success. 

I’m not saying there weren’t effective bits. But my God that speech was boring unless you’re already fascinated by Hillary Clinton. He could have been extremely effective as the attack dog — a role he relished in previous conventions. He could have tried to appeal to the core of what was once his base: the Bubba vote. He could have spoken seriously about terrorism or immigration and other wedge issues that hurt the Democrats right now. Instead he opted to reassure the ranks of law professors, legal aid activists, bureaucrats, congressional committee staffers and other apparatchiks that Hillary Clinton has always been the sort of progressive to sport a COEXIST bumper sticker on her car. 

Oh, and let’s return to the fact that Bill needed to humanize Hillary Clinton. The woman has been in public life for three decades and the highest best use of her former president husband is to spend an entire convention speech trying to convince voters that she’s human. 

Most Popular

Energy & Environment

The Climate Trap for Democrats

The more the climate debate changes, the more it stays the same. Polls show that the public is worried about climate change, but that doesn’t mean that it is any more ready to bear any burden or pay any price to combat it. If President Donald Trump claws his way to victory again in Pennsylvania and the ... Read More
Elections

Kamala Harris Runs for Queen

I’m going to let you in on a secret about the 2020 presidential contest: Unless unforeseen circumstances lead to a true wave election, the legislative stakes will be extremely low. The odds are heavily stacked against Democrats’ retaking the Senate, and that means that even if a Democrat wins the White House, ... Read More
Culture

What We’ve Learned about Jussie Smollett

It’s been a few weeks since March 26, when all charges against Jussie Smollett were dropped and the actor declared that his version of events had been proven correct. How’s that going? Smollett’s celebrity defenders have gone quiet. His publicists and lawyers are dodging reporters. The @StandwithJussie ... Read More