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Eye On Candidates
March 18, 2015

Democrats Stuck With Clinton?

Sean Parnell

Victor Davis Hanson, who writes for the Leadership Project for America Foundation on a great many policy issues, has a pretty interesting critique of Hillary Clinton as the potential Democratic candidate in 2016 over at National Review Online.  Here’s a sampling of his observations:

Hillary or Bust!

Hillary Clinton will not run in 2016 on the slogan of continuing the hope-and-change policies of Barack Obama. The president has not enjoyed a 50 percent approval rating since a brief period after his reelection. And he is no friend of the Clintons.

 Abroad, chaos in the Middle East, failed reset with Russia, leading from behind in Libya, and the deaths in Benghazi are no more winning issues than are, at home, the Obamacare fiasco, $9 trillion in new debt, and the alphabet soup of the AP, IRS, NSA, and VA scandals.

The Democratic party has also radically changed in just the six years Barack Obama has been in the White House, as it suffered the greatest losses in Congress since the 1920s. Other than hoping for a serious Republican scandal, the Democrats can only cling to two assumptions. One is historic voter turnout by minorities. The second is bloc voting on the basis of racial and gender solidarity…

Hanson also observes some of the strategic difficulties that Clinton, or any Democratic candidate, is likely to face in 2016.

What, then, is Hillary Clinton’s strategy for 2016?

Once again, mostly symbolism. Apart from Hillary and the idea of the first female president, the Democrats have little to turn to — which explains why Hillary may well be nominated even if her health and inclinations — and her disastrous performances — lean against it.

What won Barack Obama the presidency in 2008 was public anger over the Iraq war, fear following the 2008 Wall Street meltdown — and his own iconic status as potentially the first African-American president. Had the surge in Iraq succeeded a year earlier, or had the financial markets not crashed, or had the Democrats nominated a Joe Biden or a Howard Dean, then they probably would have lost the presidency.

Unfortunately for them, however, in 2016 there will be no incumbent Republican administration to scapegoat. “Bush did it” is now stale after six years. Blaming the Tea Party or the Republican House is likewise old hat. There is no success story to bandy about — no desire to bring on another Libya or expand Obamacare or borrow another $9 trillion.

An interesting read, definitely worth checking out the whole piece (here).