Last week Hillary emerged from the woods to remind us how she lost the election to an ignorant, racist bozo who boasted on tape about getting away with sexual assault.
It started with the revelation that yet another man who hides his lack of morals behind a thin veneer of fake faith was being called out for sexual harassment. His name is Burns Strider, and he was the “faith advisor” to Hillary’s 2008 campaign.
As always, there’s a ‘he-said, she-said’ element. Except both sexes pretty much agree on what he did: inappropriately touched a fellow staffer, kissed her on the head, and sent her suggestive emails.
(Strider claimed the kisses were “devotional blessings.”)
Clinton’s campaign manager said he should be fired.
The person who led the investigation said he should be fired.
Hillary said no.
Instead she: a) transferred the woman who was harassed, b) docked Strider several weeks’ pay, and c) ordered him to attend counseling.
Which he didn’t.
Burns Strider (Flickr/Center for American Progress/Ralph Alswang)
There are a lot of possible explanations for why Hillary did what she did, some of them linking back to how she handled Bill’s infidelities. There’s also the fact this all happened a decade ago, when America was a different place.
But here’s where Hillary goes completely off the rails, in typical fashion:
A story appeared today about something that happened in 2008. I was dismayed when it occurred, but was heartened the young woman came forward, was heard, and had her concerns taken seriously and addressed.— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) January 27, 2018
So this is a win for Team Hillary?
“Dismayed” is a pretty weak response. Overcoming dismay because a woman was “heard” suggests there wasn’t a lot of dismay to begin with. And her “concerns” (not, say, “crimes”) were “addressed” by keeping the harasser in his position, transferring the victim, and failing to follow through to ensure he went to counseling as promised?
That didn’t seem to be selling well, so Hillary tweeted:
I called her today to tell her how proud I am of her and to make sure she knows what all women should: we deserve to be heard.— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) January 27, 2018
As with her emails, the Original Sin isn’t all that terrible. She could have come out and said “In hindsight I didn’t handle it the way I should have. I should have listened to my advisors, and fired Burns Strider. At the very least I should have ensured he made good on his commitment to attend counseling. I didn’t, and for that I’m very sorry.”
But Hillary is incapable of doing that. She responds with a delicately worded statement that isn’t actually false (ah, those were the days), but it doesn’t deal with the issue, either. She admits no mistakes. She hides her personal shortcomings behind a statement of principle (“we deserve to be heard”).
She responds like a lawyer whose overwhelming concern is to avoid legal liability. That’s certainly understandable in a courtroom, but in public it makes Clinton look dishonest (which Trump leveraged to the hilt).
It makes her look insensitive. Sexual harassment should not be described as “something that happened.”
And it makes her look like she’s trying to grab credit out of a situation she clearly mishandled.
If she can’t be trusted to come clean on a judgment call involving a single staffer, how likely is she to be open and honest with the American people when it comes to a major screwup like Libya?
Despite all of that, she’s light-years ahead of Trump, and should have won in 2016. But unlike her husband she’s completely tone-deaf. That’s one of the reasons she lost, and the reason she should never run again.🔷
Editor’s note: Since the publication of this article, Hillary Clinton took to Facebook to post a long statement in which she says she seems to explain that she regrets her decision and also says “I very much understand the question I’m being asked as to why I let an employee on my 2008 campaign keep his job despite his inappropriate workplace behavior. The short answer is this: If I had it to do again, I wouldn’t.”
I wrote a Facebook post about a decision I made 10 years ago, what’s changed, & on an issue you didn’t hear a single word about tonight. Take a look. https://t.co/itPfGtIMOM— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) January 31, 2018
(This piece was first published in The Blog!)