The Corner

Premature Anti-Clintonism

From a reader:

Jonah,

In reading comments at lefty blogs (including the NY Times), I have noticed more than a few Obama supporters accusing Hillary of “Rovian” or “Karl Rove-style” tactics. Some have speculated (jokingly?) that Hillary must have hired Rove.

I don’t know if Rove ran campaigns that were dirtier than the average campaign, but the implicit assumption is impossible to miss: the Clintons always ran clean, ethical campaigns and treated their political opponents with dignity and respect. That is, until Karl Rove invented dirty campaigning, and Hillary saw how effective it could be.

The irony is that I don’t think that Hillary’s primary campaign has been particularly dirty, at least by Clinton standards. This campaign has been light on character assassination. As far as I know, no one has been called “trailer park trash” by Clinton surragates. Anyway, it’s nice to see the left starting to come around on the Clintons, but do you think we conservatives can get a little credit for being sick of the Clintons before being sick of the Clintons was cool?   

Jonah Goldberg — Jonah Goldberg holds the Asness Chair in Applied Liberty at the American Enterprise Institute and is a senior editor of National Review. His new book, The Suicide of The West, is on sale now.

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