Is Hillary Disaster-Proofed?
John Hawkins gives his assessment
of her candidacy. He strikes me as right on the money with this part of the analysis:In her favor, she seems to be fairly well liked by the press and the Democratic base, has proven she can fund raise, and seems -- at least, in my opinion -- to be much smarter politically than John Kerry. Personally, I think she will be a tougher opponent than John Kerry.
She is also the only Democrat who can act like a moderate for the next three years and still have a great shot at getting the nomination. That's a huge advantage over Kerry, who was forced to tack left with his vote against the $87 billion Iraq package in order to assuage the anti-war crowd. It helped him win the nomination, but it undeniably hurt him in the general election.
However, I gotta respectfully disagree with this:[S]he has more baggage than anybody short of Ted Kennedy or Robert Byrd which is why in the last poll I saw on the topic in December of 2004, she already has a staggeringly high 42% negative rating. Just imagine that as a starting point and then add on a year of negative ads and lots of time spent reminding people about "Hillarycare," Whitewater, The Rose Law Firm Billing Records, her crooked looking cattle futures deal, on and on and on as far as the eye can see. It's not a pretty picture.
That past isn't really going to hurt her, or rather, it's already hurt her as much as it's going to. Almost everybody knows about Hillary's many scandals, it's been gone over thoroughly, and there are almost certainly no unexploded bombshells in there. And nobody is going to be interested in hearing about Whitewater again.
In a way, it's analogous to the situation over President Bush's Air National Guard service. In 2000 it was a story because we didn't know W all that well. In 2004 it didn't matter (which is the irony of Rathergate: It would have been a futile effort even if the memos had not turned out to be phony). The same applies to Hillary.
Assuming there's no deep, dark secrets from her recent past, Hillary's basically disaster-proofed. And when you consider how many skeletons popped out of Le Fraude's closet (Christmas in Cambodia, the controversy over his medals, his meeting with the North Vietnamese for starters) that has got to sound tempting to the Democrats.