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January 21, 2017 / 23 Tevet, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Clinton’

Evidence In Anthony Weiner Sexting Scandal Leads To FBI Reopening Criminal Investigation Of Hillary Clinton

Monday, October 31st, 2016

{Originally posted to the author’s blogsie, The Lid}

It takes a lot for the FBI to reopen an investigation.  It takes even more for the FBI to reopen an investigation of a presidential candidate eleven days before the election. But that’s exactly what happened.

Early this afternoon it was announced that the FBI was reopening the Criminal Investigation of Hillary Clinton’s conduct as secretary of state, with regards to her email server and America’s secrets (and don’t listen to any Clinton surrogates who say it’s not a criminal investigation…the FBI doesn’t do any other kind of investigation).

The first inkling of the news was  a tweet from Rep. Jason Chaffetz


About ten minutes after Chaffetz’s tweet came this letter from FBI Director Comey to congressional leaders:


The new information didn’t come from Wikileaks, according to the NY Times,  it came from Huma Abedin (thanks to the Weiner sexting investigation scandal).Federal law enforcement officials said Friday that the new emails uncovered in the closed investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server were discovered after the F.B.I. seized electronic devices belonging to Huma Abedin, an aide to Mrs. Clinton, and her husband, Anthony Weiner. Federal law enforcement officials said Friday that the new emails uncovered in the closed investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server were discovered after the F.B.I. seized electronic devices belonging to Huma Abedin, an aide to Mrs. Clinton, and her husband, Anthony Weiner.

We don’t know when this new criminal investigation will be over, nor what exactly the new material is. However in this highly charged political year less than two weeks before election day, Comey would not reopen the criminal investigation of Hillary Clinton and do it so publicly, unless he thought it was significant. Whether or not this will have any effect on people’s votes is also unknown. It may be that this kind of news is already baked in to people’s attitudes about Clinton…we shall see. Either way if you are a Trump supporter, it can’t hurt.


Jeff Dunetz

INTO THE FRAY: Condell on Clinton

Sunday, October 30th, 2016

It is unusual for American voters to get a real choice in a presidential election but this is a genuine fork in the road for America—and the world. It’s one direction or another from here. – Pat Condell, America’s Moment Of Truth, October 25, 2016

The upcoming US presidential election has been a topic I have tried to refrain from writing about. Indeed, I wished to avoid expressing any opinion of the depressing debacle of the US elections, consoling myself with the thought that, in comparison, Israeli politics look like a dignified exercise of the democratic process.

Condell on Clinton

Arguably, there has never been an election in which American voters have been asked to choose between two candidates , who—for very different reasons—are clearly so hopelessly unqualified and undeserving of their nation’s highest office.

Appalled at the choice with which the world’s most powerful democracy has presented its electorate, I was loathe to take a position for, or against, either of these deeply flawed candidates—neither of whom I, as a non-US citizen, can vote for anyway.

What changed my mind, and convinced me to take up the challenge of writing something I felt I could take a clear stance on, without compromising my journalistic integrity, was a withering anti-Clinton video put out by another non-US citizen – the ever-incisive British political satirist, Pat Condell.

Actually, this was not one of Condell’s best videos. Moreover, I did not agree with everything he said in it. However, it did crystallize for me that what was really at stake on November 8, was something that went far beyond a choice between two rather unappealing (to gravely understate the case) individuals.

It is, in effect, a choice between two incompatibly divergent socio-political paradigms, with historic and probably irrevocable significance—for both the US and the global community.

Two divergent socio-political paradigms

Condell characterized the sharply contrasting alternatives confronting voters as follows: “In broad terms you could describe it a choice between the American way and European way…”

Although I understand why he chose to frame the issue in this manner, I am not sure that I entirely agree. Indeed, I believe that the choice is even starker than he suggests. In essence, it is a choice between a chance to preserve a society based on traditional Western values and Judeo-Christian foundations to which they are tethered; or irreversibly abandoning that prospect.

I realize of course that some might find it a little “over-the-top” to attribute such epic dimensions to a clash between two such eminently unimposing and decidedly “unepic” protagonists, but—perhaps perversely—that is precisely how the matter stands.

For these elections are less about the candidates themselves, and more—much more—about the realities they herald…and those they don’t.

Please, don’t misunderstand me. I am not suggesting for a minute that Clinton or Trump is genuinely committed to the policies they espouse. It doesn’t matter that neither of them really embody the views that they profess to ascribe to, or even really believe in them.

For whatever their real personal political proclivities may (or may not) be,

* the adversarial socio-political milieu that envelops their perceived political “identity”;

* the rivalrous political allegiances they have formed to sustain their political careers,

* the opposing political machinery which drives their political activities; and

* the political constituencies on which they draw for political support;

will, after the elections almost deterministically, sweep them each along their divergent paradigmatic paths.

Extending “Obama-ism”

Condell elaborated on his “American vs European” dichotomy: “For the past eight years President Obama has tried to make America more European because he is a European social democrat at heart…” He added acerbically: “He belongs over here in Europe with the rest of the open borders “nothing to do with Islam” crowd making life more dangerous for ordinary people for virtuous reasons. It’s what he tried to do in America with his so European reluctance to even name, let alone confront, Islamic terrorism.” Regarding Clinton, he warned: “And his chosen successor, Hilary Clinton, if elected intends to up the ante on that score when she brings in all those third world Muslim migrants who are waiting in the wings…”

The perception of Clinton as an extension of the Obama incumbency is crucial for grasping the stakes in the coming election. In many ways, his 2008 victory was a point of inflexion in American history.

With the opportunity to undo it lost in 2012, its detrimental impact began to solidify. A Clinton victory will all but make that impact indelibly irremovable. After all, Clinton has not only by and large endorsed all of Obama’s past policies—regardless of their calamitous consequences—she was in fact a co-author of a considerable portion of them.

A deeper dichotomy

But as I mentioned previously, by presenting the divide between Trump and a post-Obama surrogate, Clinton, as an “America vs Europe” one, Condell understates the true nature of the dichotomy. Indeed, it is a dichotomy that goes far beyond a difference of perspectives within prevailing Western civilization. It is a dichotomy between what have been traditionally deemed “Western values” and values which are “non-Western”. Indeed, the less charitable might say, “anti-Western”.

Accordingly, as I wrote just prior to the 2012 presidential elections, this latter set of values display “the same strains of resentment and envy, suspicion of others’ achievement, the belief that the success of some was necessarily the product of exploitation pervades much of the anti-colonial, anti-American – and yes, anti-Zionist – philosophy of many members of the Non-Aligned Movement.”

As a result, I cautioned: “[Obama’s] interpretation of the international role the US should play, the nature of the country’s interests, and the manner in which they should be pursued; his perception of friend and foe and the attitudes that should be adopted towards them, all seem to entail dramatic and disconcerting departure from that of most of his predecessors” adding that: “In this regard, he is the first US president who is explicitly … unmoored, both cognitively and emotionally, from the bollards of America’s founding Judeo-Christian heritage….”

Deeper dichotomy (cont.)

In a piece entitled “Will the West withstand the Obama presidency?” published just after the ill-conceived Iran nuclear deal, I warned: “For anyone who understands that the US Constitution is not a Sharia-compliant document … it should be alarmingly apparent that the Obama-incumbency is a dramatic and disturbing point of inflection in the history of America and its ‘Western’ allies”, clarifying that: “By ‘Western’ I mean countries whose political practices and societal norms are rooted in Judeo-Christian foundations in a cultural rather than in any religious sense.”

Indeed, almost 18 months earlier I asserted: “In many ways, the election of Obama in 2008 was a watershed… not so much because for the first time a man of color was elected to the US’s highest office…[but] because for the first time, the person elected was someone whose political credo coalesced in an environment where many of its formative influences (both personalities and ideologies)… differed sharply (arguably antithetically) … from those that historically made America, America.”

As Obama’s perceived successor, Clinton will be bound to preserve and promote—whether of her own volition or not—these political perspectives, simply because of the political milieu in which she will be compelled to operate, the political interests she will be compelled to serve and the political allegiances she will be compelled to maintain.

Deceptive first appearances

Of course, at first glance, one could make a plausible claim that Clinton is eminently qualified to serve as president—certainly far more so than the current incumbent was prior to his election. After all, she was First Lady for eight years (1993-2001), served as a US senator (2001-9) and as Secretary of State (2009-13).

This makes an impressive résumé indeed—until one begins to delve into the details. Putting aside for the moment all the earlier scandals that have plagued her and her spouse, in the last eight years, either as Secretary of State, as contender of the Democratic Party nomination and as a candidate for the US presidency, she has either been actively involved in formulating policy for the Obama administration, or endorsing its policies. She certainly has not distanced herself publically in any way from them—and hence must be inextricably tied—either directly or by association—to the succession of failures and fiascos of his administration—both domestically and abroad.

On the home front, this includes soaring levels of debt, plunging levels of workforce participation, yawning budget deficits and a failing health care reform, Obama’s signature domestic policy initiative, which earlier this month none other than Bill Clinton dismissed as “the craziest thing in the world”.

On the international front, things are, if anything, far worse, with debacle being followed by yet more debacles, and US influence and stature plummeting across the globe.

Failures and Fiascos

Thus, whether in Egypt or Libya, in Syria or in failed endeavors to “reset” relations with Russia, US policy and reputation are in tatters worldwide: The appalling Iran deal, allowing the tyrants of Tehran to acquire mountains of cash to finance global terror and weaponized nuclear capability, in exchange for a promised deferral , the estrangement from Saudi Arabia, the heightening tensions with the Kremlin. These are all disasters that Clinton is tainted with—whether they occurred “on her watch” as Secretary of State, or as Obama’s designated replacement.

But gross policy failures are not the only disqualifying stain on Clinton’s candidacy.

Arguably, even more damaging is the perception of corruption/corrosion of the organs of governance that are associated with her. This was perhaps best highlighted by the embarrassing House hearing with FBI director James Comey, when he inexplicably recommended Clinton not be indicted, while actually citing a litany of reasons why she should be! Indeed, the absurdity of the situation prompted Congressmen Trey Gowdy (R-SC) to exclaim disapprovingly: “…my real fear is…this double track justice system that is… perceived in this country…if you are a private in the Army and email yourself classified information you will be kicked out. But if you are Hillary Clinton, and you seek a promotion to Commander in Chief, you will not be….

Clintonesque corruption

In an acerbic analysis of the Clinton candidacy, Indian-born commentator Atul Singh writes: “Hillary Clinton is a deeply damaged candidate with far too many skeletons in her cupboard.” And skeletons galore there are: The Email scandal, the Benghazi tragedy, and “pay-to-play” allegations surrounding massive donations to the Clinton Foundation from Mid-East tyrannies ,whose societies reflect the very antithesis of the values Clinton professes to stand for.

Singh makes the withering observation: “She has been in power far too long and, as someone wise once said, power corrupts… Earlier this year, she ironically delivered a speech on income inequality in a $12,495 Giorgio Armani jacket. It evoked Marie Antoinette’s apocryphal comment about the starving sans culottes: “If they have no bread, let them eat cake.” Actually, the irony is worse because the Clintons claim to represent les sans culottes while gorging on foie gras…”

Of course none of this should be construed as a portrayal of Donald Trump as a paragon of virtue. Quite the opposite. Singh again: “While Trump might be a lying braggart and an obnoxious bully, Clinton [is] a wolf in sheep’s clothing and would persist with a status quo that is untenable.”

Indeed, much opprobrium can he heaped on Trump. He is vulgar, petty, easily distracted and I am far less convinced than Condell, who extolls Trump’s sincerity and commitment, as to the depth of his conviction in his own political pronouncements. But what would you rather have—Trump’s glaring character defects, or Hilary’s declared intention to flood the country with un-vetted and unregulated immigrants from the Mid-East and South America?

Trump: Cut from the same cloth as “Brexit”

In many ways, Trump is the creation of Obama and Clinton – a reaction of millions of Americans to the unwanted metamorphosis of their nation. Indeed, he is cut from the same cloth as Brexit. He is a response—undeniably an inelegant one—to what is perceived as an attempt to decouple America from its roots and its heritage.

However, as such, it is a response that is relatively benign. If it is rebuffed—brace yourselves for far more drastic ones in the future. For as Condell points out, Trump is a “necessary antidote to the poison of political correctness … destroying Western society’s immune system”. If this antidote fails to be administered, its successors are guaranteed to be far more virulent.


Dr. Martin Sherman

The Jewish Press Conspiracy to Protect Hillary Clinton and the Rigged Elections [audio]

Sunday, October 30th, 2016

The Observer wrote a fascinating article about the tape from an interview given by Hillary Clinton to The Jewish Press back in 2006.

What makes it so interesting or “relevant” to the public right now is that in the interview, Clinton explicitly talked about the mistake she felt the United States made by not rigging the Palestinian Authority elections to ensure that Hamas didn’t win – which it did, winning 74 seats to Fatah’s 45 seats on the Palestinian Legislative Council, and then eventually taking over Gaza by throwing Fatah officials off the roofs of Gazan buildings.

Clinton didn’t use the word “rig” but it is clear that this is what she meant.


The Observer found it odd that the story was no longer available on JewishPress.com, and we discovered that the antisemitic conspiracy theorists on the Internet are trying to create an entire backstory as to why The Jewish Press (and the Jews) censored, suppressed and hid an interview where Clinton discusses rigging an election, in light of Trump’s accusations against her in the current US elections.

Unfortunately for the conspiracy theorists, the answer is simply a technical one.

When we rebuilt the JewishPress.com website in 2011 and migrated it over to a new platform, that article was one of several that didn’t survive the migration process due to some odd character codes in the text.

But the article wasn’t lost.

Thanks to the technology of the WayBackMachine, the original article was preserved and archived on the Internet, untouched by human hands, odd � characters and all.

Last night, we republished the Hillary Clinton interview back onto the JewishPress.com website.

For those that believe The Jewish Press hid the entire story about Clinton wanting to rig the Palestinian Authority elections, they can now actually see for themselves that this was, in fact, her first answer that was posted in the original article.

The Jewish Press: Israel recently concluded its war against Hizbullah in what many consider to be a stalemated position. How do you see things right now?

Sen. Clinton: First, I don’t think we should have pushed for an election in the Palestinian territories. I think that was a big mistake. If we were going to push for an election, we should have made sure we did something to determine who was going to win instead of signing off on an electoral system that advantaged Hamas.

Original copy of the interview with Hillary Clinton as preserved on the WayBackMachine.

Original copy of the interview with Hillary Clinton as preserved on the WayBackMachine.

Nothing was hidden. Back in 2006, Hillary Clinton did talk about desiring to rig an election of a foreign government, a government with no democratic traditions, but with a rather strong history of supporting terrorism, and we published it.

Without delving into the politics of it, some might even find the idea of ensuring that radical Islamic terrorists don’t take charge of an already moderate-terrorist laden government to be a commendable goal – unlike when the US State Department, under President Obama, funded OneVoice and V-15 in an attempt to manipulate democratic Israel’s recent elections.

Stephen Leavitt

Wikileaks: Clinton Adviser Tanden Calls Israel Govt. “Ruthless Wingnuts”

Sunday, October 30th, 2016

{Originally posted to the author’s blogsite, The Lid}

This is how Team Clinton “celebrated” the reelection of Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. The day after the election, where Netanyahu won a surprise victory in national elections on handing him his fourth term in office and making him Israel’s longest-serving prime minister, Hillary adviser/President Center for American Progress, Neera Tanden wrote John Podesta an email that said;screen-shot-2016-10-28-at-10-36-52-am

“Israel is depressing It’s a good lesson that the wing nuts are just ruthless in every country,”

“Bad,” replies Podesta.

This site has already out lined Hillary Clinton’s lousy record on the Jewish State, and the lousy record of her advisers, this is just a new warning to people in America who love Israel, what the truth is about Hillary Clinton and the Jewish State.

Remember Hillary Clinton as secretary of state designed Barack Obama’s anti-Israel policies (and her VP candidate is a hero of the anti-Israel group J Street), But the two people on the email exchange, Neera Tanden and her predecessor as head of Center for American Progress (CAP) John Podesta, are more than just anti-Israel. CAP received its starter financing from George Soros and created J Street. Center for American Progress was outed as an anti-Semitic group by the Simon Wiesenthal Center.

In lead up to the last election Politico published a piece about how CAP lead by the above two Clinton advisers was fighting to change the Democratic Party to the anti-Israel party. Stories by CAP bloggers had appeared in the vehemently anti-Israel fringe publication The Electronic Intifada. CAP bloggers have also accused American Jews of a dual loyalty, calling them “Israel-Firsters” The Simon Wiesenthal Center called CAP anti-Semitic.

Unfortunately, it’s becoming increasingly difficult in this country to take a position sympathetic to the Jewish state and in favor of the continuation of America’s historic strong alliance with Israel without being called “an Israel Firster” and charged with “dual loyalties.”

A case in point: recent attacks on the Simon Wiesenthal Center by the Center for American Progress (CAP)-associated bloggers on “the far-right Simon Wiesenthal Center, which purports to promote tolerance, [but] basically called Obama a Nazi” for saying that Israel should return to the pre-1967 borders (Ben Armbruster).

CAP blogger Eli Clifton joined Media Matters Senior Foreign Policy Fellow MJ Rosenberg in using Twitter to promote an article accusing the Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Museum of Tolerance of pushing “Western groupthink that has for centuries justified wars and countless atrocities against the Arab world . . .[that’s] representative of the way many Americans feel toward Muslims and Arabs — that they are all terrorists.” Rosenberg himself has repeatedly smeared Jewish groups such the Anti-Defamation League, the American Jewish Committee, and the American Israel Public Affairs Committee as “Israel Firsters.”

Neena Tanden is also the co-chair of Hillary’s transition team and will help form the government if (God Forbid) she becomes POTUS. That should scare you about a Hillary foreign policy even more.

Folks you consider yourself a friend of Israel, this should be one more reason why you should vote for Donald Trump.

Jeff Dunetz

Hillary Clinton and Suha Arafat: ‘The Two First Ladies’

Friday, October 28th, 2016

The above was the title of the column I wrote about Hillary Clinton in November 1999 when, as First Lady of the United States, she came to Israel to visit “good friends.”

One of those “good friends” was the “First Lady of Palestine,” Suha Arafat.

I remember watching as then-Israeli President Chaim Herzog and his wife Aura stood on the reception line together with Yasser and Suha Arafat, and Hillary Clinton formally shook hands with Aura Herzog and passionately embraced Suha Arafat.

The next day she visited Suha at Ramallah’s Grand Park Hotel to inaugurate a $3.8 million project for Palestinian women and children’s health funded by the U.S. through USAID (the United States Agency for International Development). Mrs. Arafat, in her welcoming remarks, accused Israel of poisoning the air and water supply of Palestinian land, “causing cancer and other widespread diseases” among Palestinian women and children. Without elaborating on how this was accomplished and where she obtained her statistics, Suha Arafat claimed that the pollution of Palestinian land by Israel was as high as 80 percent! Instead of taking sharp exception to false remarks made in her presence, Hillary responded: “On behalf of the president and his administration, I want to tell you that you can count on the United States and the strong U.S.-Palestinian relationship as you move forward on the path to peace.”

Nor did Hillary respond to the parting words of another “non-political” speaker, the Arab administrator of the project who said to the beaming Mrs. Clinton: “I hope that the next time we host you it will be in our homeland, the State of Palestine, and in our capital city, Jerusalem.”

The focus of my article was Hillary Clinton’s attitude to Suha Arafat’s accusation, which went beyond insidious political demagoguery to the realm of historic anti-Semitism.

The question we need to ask is: How sensitive is the former First Lady to anti-Semitism? Has she heard of anti-Semitic canards, particularly the accusation that Jews poison wells and fountains in order to spread disease and death? Ever since the 14th century, when the Jews were accused of poisoning Europe’s water supply and causing the bubonic plague, popularly known as the Black Death, the myth of Jews as progenitors of pestilence has lived on. It joined the earlier stereotype of the Christ-Killer Jew and Killer-of-Christian-children, resurfacing in different mutations at different times in many different localities and instigating persecutions of Jews – massacres, expulsions and sometimes total annihilation of Jewish communities.

Throughout the ages, hundreds of thousands of Jewish men, women and children lost their lives as a result of these ghastly accusations. The resurfacing of these stereotypes in pre-Nazi Germany made the Holocaust possible.

When questioned later about her reaction to Suha’s lies, Hillary gave the most shocking answer: “They are unhelpful to the peace process.” Can you believe the callousness of such attitude? I was thunderstruck.

Having sandwiched her visit to Ramallah between visits to Yad Vashem and the Western Wall, was Hillary not sensitized to historic Jewish vulnerabilities?

The awareness of Jewish historic vulnerabilities should pose a challenge for any leader who understands that he or she must fight the negative Jewish stereotype so richly fostered in the Arab mind and Muslim culture. It must be done not only on behalf of Jews, but on behalf of Israel, the collective Jew.

Hillary as a leader has a solemn responsibility, and a first-class opportunity, to make an impact. When this is accomplished, and only then, will there be fertile atmosphere for a potential peace.

Prof. Livia Bitton-Jackson

Clinton Mulling Biden for Secretary of State

Friday, October 28th, 2016

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s short list for her old job of Secretary of State starts with Vice President Joe Biden, according to Politico, citing a source close to the campaign. Apparently, the campaign has not yet approached Biden with the proposal.

A six-term senator, Biden chaired the Senate Foreign Relations Committee before joining the Obama Ticket, and is considered an expert on the Middle East and on eastern Europe. He has been used by President Obama as his envoy to both regions. It has been noted that Clinton and Biden do not often agree on policy, Clinton being more inclined to intervene militarily, while Biden advocates a more reserved policy.

Biden would probably be the best Democratic selection from the point of view of Israel, and especially the Netanyahu Administration. He has had a rough and tumble relationship with AIPAC on occasion, but in 2008 described his relationship with the pro-Israel lobby: “I’ve never disagreed with AIPAC on the objective. Whenever I’ve had disagreement with AIPAC it has always been a tactical disagreement, not a substantive disagreement.” Following that statement, an AIPAC spokesman praised Biden’s leadership and stated: “We look forward to continuing to work with him in the Senate or in the White House.”

Like the bulk of the Democratic party, Biden supports a two-state solution. In 2009, he told an AIPAC conference that Israel “has to work towards a two-state solution” and “dismantle existing outposts and allow Palestinians freedom of movement.” He also called on the Palestinians to “combat terror and incitement against Israel.”

However, in 2007 he stated, when asked about the failure to achieve peace between Israel and the PA: “Israel’s a democracy and they make mistakes. But the notion that somehow if Israel just did the right thing, [the peace process] would work … give me a break.” He also stated that “The responsibility rests on those who will not acknowledge the right of Israel to exist, will not play fair, will not deal, will not renounce terror.”

The 2007 Biden-Brownback Resolution on Iraq, passed by the Senate with a 75-23 majority, including 26 Republicans, called for federalizing Iraq with separate regions for Kurds, Shiites, and Sunnis. Iraq’s political leadership and the GW Bush Administration united in denouncing the resolution. In retrospect it appears that following it might have prevented the violent emergence of ISIS.

In 2008, Israel Army Radio cited an unnamed source that said Biden had told Israeli officials privately that Israel “will have to reconcile itself with the nuclearization of Iran.” A Biden spokesman stated that “this is a lie peddled by partisan opponents of Senators Obama and Biden and we will not tolerate anyone questioning Senator Biden’s 35-year record of standing up for the security of Israel. … [Biden views a nuclear Iran as a] grave threat to Israel and the United States.” Israeli officials said at the time that the story was “dubious.”

Finally, as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Sen. Biden called for “hard-headed diplomacy” with Iran. He also has called for the implementation of “coordinated international sanctions” on Iran, but called to ” complement this pressure by presenting a detailed, positive vision for U.S.-Iran relations if Iran does the right thing.” In that context, in 2007, Biden voted against declaring the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps a terrorist organization, because “war with Iran is not just a bad option. It would be a disaster.”


GOPers Will Regret Backing Clinton

Wednesday, October 26th, 2016

{Originally posted to the Commentary Magazine website}

With the realization that Hillary Clinton is highly likely to win the presidential election dawning on even the most insulated of Republicans, some are starting to contemplate the terms of their surrender. While Clinton’s election is virtually assured, the makeup of the next Congress is not. The ability of Republican incumbents to evade Trump’s event horizon and outperform their party’s presidential nominee at the polls will determine how Clinton will govern. The likeliest scenario remains, however, that Republicans will retain a truncated majority in the House. In that case, Republicans who have served as a useful source of support for Clinton will again find themselves in her sights. Republicans may soon rediscover that they are more use to Hillary Clinton as a foil than as a source of legitimacy.

First, given the departure from both Republicanism and precedent that Donald Trump represents, it must be said that the number of Republicans who are outright endorsing Hillary Clinton is remarkably small. With rare exception, they are GOP donors, campaign professionals, policy advisors, or former elected officials. Still, even this rate of defection in the present hyper-partisan era is staggering. If Clinton were farsighted, she could use this rare confluence of events to usher in a period of radical political transformation.

As John Podhoretz speculated in the latest podcast, Clinton could use the lasting fissures within the GOP coalition to her advantage. She could enter office determined to govern as her husband campaigned in 1992—as a new kind of Democrat dedicated to productivity and triangulation. Clinton could pursue grand bargains on legislative priorities ranging from tax and entitlement to immigration reform. She could cleave off members of the Republican House conference whose voters are more likely to reward accomplishment than obstruction, exacerbating tensions within the nation’s conservative coalition. Such a strategy could cement the factionalism that defined the Republican Party in 2016 into something permanent, paving the way for a redefinition of the nation’s political makeup.

Now raise your hand if you think any of that is likely? Hillary Clinton will not enter office a popular politician. She ran for the White House premised on the notion that the office was her due and that she was not Donald Trump. If House Republicans retain their majority, they will be able to claim as much of a popular mandate as Clinton. “Forget a honeymoon with Congress in early 2017,” Cook Political Report’s Amy Walter wrote, “Clinton will be lucky to get a weekend in Niagara Falls.”

It won’t just be Republicans who are apt to keep Clinton on a tight leash. The former first lady will lack both Barack Obama’s massive Democratic majorities in Congress and the admiration he enjoyed from the liberal grassroots and the media. The left does not trust Hillary Clinton. They don’t believe that she shares their antipathy toward free trade, retributive social justice, or laissez-faire markets. They don’t think wants to see America retrench from the globe and abandon its overseas interests as some perverse form of atonement for emerging from the Cold War the globe’s lone superpower. What’s more, they’re right. As such, Clinton will not have the leeway to make grand bipartisan gestures to Republicans. The American left will not tolerate them.

If Republicans in the House continue to pursue their successful strategy of thwarting the administration’s objectives, Clinton’s path of least resistance is to adopt Barack Obama’s approach to governance: which is to say, don’t. Save the occasional theatrical display after the 2010 midterm elections, Obama preferred to mount a perpetual campaign against the “obstructionist” GOP. In terms of political talent, Hillary Clinton is no Barack Obama. This strategy would not only accelerate the process of reunification within the GOP conference, but it would also embarrass Republicans who cast their lot with Clinton.

Republicans who escape 2016 with their political careers intact will be charged with blocking Clinton’s agenda, and they will be vilified for it. Republicans who endorsed that agenda in 2016 because their party’s nominee was anathema will find themselves in an uncomfortable position next year when Clinton no longer has any use for them.

Noah Rothman

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/gopers-will-regret-backing-clinton/2016/10/26/

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