In the election of 2008, the dignified aura of President of the United States is again under assault by Bill Clinton. Support of his wife is not the issue, but, as an anonymous contributor to Andrew Sullivan’s Daily Dish website observes:
“I won’t soon forget the sight of Bill Clinton – after all, still the titular head of the party – savagely attacking Obama’s integrity at Dartmouth. Can anyone imagine, say, Harry Truman in 1960 traveling to West Virginia to deliver such a blast against John Kennedy? Or Lyndon Johnson in 1972 visiting New Hampshire to issue such a deeply personal, highly public condemnation of George McGovern? And yet virtually no one in the party suggested that he might have behaved inappropriately.”
The Daily Dish reader furthers states:
“I’m a lifelong Democrat who has never voted Republican for any office in my life. But in a McCain-Clinton contest, I’d vote for McCain. Though I disagree with him on many issues, at least he has integrity.”
Once again it appears Bill Clinton has no shame when it comes to trashing the image of the US Presidency. We suspect we know the damage George W. Bush has done to the US image abroad, but we are heartsick as well by the damage slick Willy and the whole Bill, Hillary, Monica bedroom bedlam cost us as a country.
Bill Clinton’s trashing of Obama goes far beyond the to and fro of politics. It is petty, ugly, cheap and demeaning to the Democratic Party that stood behind Clinton to a large degree during the scandal du jour of the 90’s.
As we are learning now, though, those smiles on our faces when Clinton departed office were more of relief than sorrow. Through 2001-2007, the longing for the Clintons was misleading. The Clintons were the obvious beneficiaries of the “Anyone but Bush” sentiment. We hadn’t yet learned of the bright alternatives to either Bushies or Clinton.
What about the office of the President, that office which Bill Clinton still represents?
Just when you thought it couldn’t be taken down any further, we have President Clinton foaming at the mouth attacking his wife’s opponents. Jabbing, jabbing, jabbing that finger at us. Let’s not even explore that implication! He looks silly and small and his behavior is a stigma on us all.
Get over it, Bill. Obama is a better speaker than even you. One wonders if Obama’s stature isn’t more of a blow to your own political legacy than it is to your dearly beloved’s political future.
As Sullivan himself remarks, “What we are witnessing is the corruption of nepotism and the abuse of a former office for the pursuit of dynastic power. Anyone who has ever followed the Clintons knows how unscrupulous they are. But even I didn’t expect a former president to be as tacky as this. You want this kind of character back in the White House? You want another dynasty, defending itself and attacking others in the same party? You know what to do.”
We saw Hillary’s tears. It’s about time the Clinton’s saw the people’s tears. Katrina, now that would have been a good time to choke up a bit.
It’s not a clever insight, to be sure, but it would seem the Clintons are part of the problem and no longer the solution.
The majority of the American people from both parties seem to be pleading with Hillary and Bill Clinton, “Please let us wash up all the dirty laundry left by the Clintons and Bushes and hang you all out to dry.”
After they are scrubbed clean and fresh, we can fold them up in the past, stick them in one of those storage bags and suck the air out of them all.
Then it’s off to the fruit cellar with them folks!