Clinton’s attacks on Sanders signal worries

The Democratic party establishment and the head of the Democratic National Committee Debbie Wasserman-Schultz have been totally in the tank for Hillary Clinton and have tried as much as possible to ensure her a smooth path to her nomination by having as few debates as possible and scheduling them at times with low viewership, such as weekend evenings and during the holiday season, so that her opponents do not get much visibility. In fact today’s debate is not only on a Sunday, it is scheduled at the same time as an NFL playoff game and the popular PBS soap opera Downton Abbey.

But despite this effort to limit the public’s exposure to her opponents, Bernie Sanders is surging in the polls. While Clinton still has a large lead nationwide, Sanders has narrowed that gap to about 13% from nearly 30% just a month ago. In Iowa they are pretty much neck and neck and he is leading in New Hampshire. Clinton is clearly alarmed by this development and that her carefully cultivated aura of inevitability might be seriously dented and has started harshly attacking him, while simultaneously whining that he has ‘gone negative’ on her.

What seems to have happened is that her camp sees alarming signs that this year may see a replay of 2008 when she was overconfident and ended up coming in third in the Iowa caucuses behind Barack Obama and John Edwards. They have decided to start attacking Sanders now and we can expect to see her do more of it in tonight’s debate that takes place at 9:00pm ET on NBC TV stations and can also be seen online. Wasserman-Schultz’s strategy may backfire because Sanders is doing well despite her trying to depress viewership while Clinton’s attacks on Sanders will now not get the wider audience she seeks.

I will be watching the debate and will give my impressions tomorrow.

Here’s The Daily Show on the legend of the surging Sanders.

(This clip aired on January 12, 2016. To get suggestions on how to view clips of The Daily Show and The Nightly Show outside the US, please see this earlier post. If the videos autoplay, please see here for a diagnosis and possible solutions.)


  1. says

    her carefully cultivated aura of inevitability

    She keeps relying on that and it doesn’t work very well. Remember how surprised the Clintonians were when O’Bama won the primary?

    There are a lot of people who don’t like Clinton. I’m one of them. She’s a warmonger and a liar, and her support for “regime change” wherever the US has attempted it makes me think that as president she’d serve the deep state’s interests as she has throughout her fairly undistinguished career. On the opinion plane, she seems to me to love power overmuch; she’s spent her entire life in pursuit of it. I’m wary of politicians that appear to be willing to do anything to get closer and closer to the seat of power; Hillary Clinton has enough money and influence but she has her eyes locked on the big brass ring with such intensity that I worry she’s convinced herself that by wanting it so much for so long that she’s somehow earned it. She strikes me as a horrible person who will tell any lie and make any deal that she has to, to get that next step. In other words, she’s just another ruthless politician.

    That’s why I couldn’t decide between her and Obama the first time around: most of us didn’t know Obama and he’s a better orator and told sweeter lies. Hillary wasted her lies on little shit like dodging sniper fire in Kosovo (why did she go there? Did she want to see people get killed? Or was it just a chance to mug for the cameras or maybe get face-time with Amanpour?)

    I’d cross the street to put her (or even Trump) out if they were on fire, but I’d never turn my back on any of the candidates; they’re all shitheads as far as I am concerned. It’s the usual carefully constructed hobson’s choice between “which is the least unappealing of these bowls of shit?” that the US is sold as “democracy”

  2. abear says

    I see now that Bill Clinton is attacking Sanders’ platform of single payer healthcare saying it would be too expensive. This of course is the same falsehood that the repubs trotted out when the Clintons tried to reform to reform healthcare.
    Even Howard Dean has changed his tune on this issue now that he is taking money from health insurance lobbyists
    Americans are paying almost double what they should for healthcare so that a bunch of parasites running the insurance system can continue to make big bucks, and the shame of it is that “progressive” politicians are being complicit because it is politically convenient and they can get a tiny share of the loot.

  3. Dave Huntsman says

    Mano, I think the Democratic Party -- as an organization -- is incredibly incompetent these days. it’s not just at the national level, with Debbie Schulz’s shenanigans, tho those are bad. (Her decision to minimize debates, put many on the weekends, etc. doesn’t just ‘help’ Hillary (if it does); it hurts the Democrats overall). Just look at the Ohio Democratic Party.

    For them to, a year beforehand, apparently not only decide to declare it a slam dunk for Ted Strickland, to to back him up in refusing to debate Sittenfeld, the largest vote getter in southern Ohio. No debates between them is not just bad for Ohioans; it’s bad for the Democratic Party, and I maintain, it’s even bad for Ted even if he does get the nomination. So it’s not just the national Democratic Party organization that is shooting itself in the foot; so is the Ohio state Democratic Party.

  4. doublereed says

    You see, the Republicans see the Left as the villains. They’ll do anything, even damage themselves to defeat the Left.

    This is in stark contrast to the Democrats, who see the Left as the villains.


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