By any standard Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign pre-show masquerading as a book tour has been a disaster. Book sales have been lower than expected. Monica Lewinsky is back in the public eye and the undeclared but likely candidate has made enough gaffes to put her in the running for the Mitt Romney Medal. (Clinton recently conceded some of her recent word choices have been “inartful.”)
The gaffes, strangely enough, are rooted primarily in the issue that has long been one of the Clinton brand’s greatest strengths: how to make America an equal playing field for the little guy and big guys alike. But Clinton seems to have confirmed for everyone during her publicity tour that she and her family are now officially “big guys.” They ceased being one of the little people a long time ago, but appear to be the only ones who don’t know it. And that may doom any shot Hillary Clinton has at the presidency.
First, Clinton said her family was “dead broke” upon leaving the White House. This struck some who identify as broke as odd, since the Clintons managed to buy more than one swanky home during their supposedly “broke” phase. Then there was the attempt to distinguish her tax status from those who are “truly well off.” Well, to most who are not multimillionaires, the Clintons are “truly well off.”
Then there were the revelations regarding Chelsea. Despite no real journalistic experience, the Clintons’ daughter was given a job by NBC News earning more per month than most seasoned media professionals earn in a year. In a business in which layoffs have become a fact of life for experienced journalists, Clinton’s high-six-figure salary would be more than enough to elicit eye rolls. But Chelsea’s later comments about money more likely elicited nausea. In an interview with Fast Company, she said, “I was curious if I could care about [money] on some fundamental level, and I couldn’t.”
Saying “I don’t care about money” is the sort of thing people say who have never had to worry about not having any. It’s also the kind of thing someone earning six figures for little work, and living in a multimillion-dollar apartment, is likely to say.
Then there is former President Clinton, who has become one of the wealthiest ex-presidents ever, and the wealthiest former president alive. He defended his wife as “not out of touch,” indicating that he, too, is out of touch.
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