The Corner

What Goes Around, Comes Around

Hillary Rodham famously began her career after Yale Law School, working on Capitol Hill, as a young staff attorney on the Watergate Committee. She was known to feel deep, person antipathy for President Richard Nixon, and to take great pleasure in getting members of his administration who were hauled before the committee to squirm. There have been allegations that she was so eager to see President Nixon impeached that she may have crossed a professional line or two, though those are not relevant to this post, except in a grand, karmic kind of way.

This year, the 100th anniversary of Richard Nixon’s birth, it is fascinating — riveting, really — to watch the older, more practiced, but not necessarily wiser Mrs. Hillary Rodham Clinton, now our secretary of state, end her public career on the other side of a hearing table. In a very similar room, she faced infinitely less hostile questioning over her own abuses of the political contract between leaders and citizens in a democracy. Just as Richard Nixon stood accused of lying to the American people and to Congress, covering up a campaign break-in while seeking to be reelected, Mrs. Clinton stands accused of lying to the American people to divert attention from a huge political fiasco in which four American were killed, as her department dithered and then lied about the events, in the course of a campaign to reelect the president whose Administration she serves.

Mrs. Clinton went off on an angry, almost hysterical, and surely nonsensical diversionary tangent today when asked by Senator Ronald Johnson (R., Wis.), why the administration had attempted to mislead the American people about the cause of the deaths of four Americans in Benghazi. As I recall from watching the Watergate hearings as a very young teenager, none of the old white men in the dock got hysterical, or teary at any moment. Many of them went to jail for much less than the cover-up that we did not get answers about today, even though no one died at the Watergate complex. Further, there were no parallels to the part where Secretary Clinton advocated a set of policies in the Middle East that destabilized bad allies by supporting worse insurgents who are now killing Americans out of allegiance to their known ideology.

There are sound reasons why Republicans, conservatives especially, are depressed and dismayed about our party’s appeal going forward. But those who have suggested that if Hillary Clinton throws her hat into the ring in 2016, it’s a done deal that she wins . . . should feel better after today. I know I do.

Why? Karma. Until today, I don’t think I have ever seen such a good illustration of the woo-woo, hippy-dippy “what goes around, comes around” mantra. But here we are. Smiling yet? 

— Lisa Schiffren is a Senior Fellow at the Independent Women’s Forum.

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