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Trump is Hillary Clinton’s spirit animal The pair have more in common than you think

The overlooked odd-couple. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The overlooked odd-couple. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)


June 1, 2024   8 mins

Sometimes, I feel a little bit bad for Hillary Clinton — and not just because she missed out on a history-making presidency by a paltry 80,000 votes. It’s because she’s a feminist icon who will nevertheless always be remembered for coming second to an undeserving man. That Hillary began her life in public service as a first lady to a philandering husband, and ended it as first runner-up to the first President to be convicted of multiple felonies: there is something a little bit sad about this sidekick-to-second-place arc, a sense of so much promise going unfulfilled.

It was especially palpable on that night in 2016 at the victory party that wasn’t, her supporters weeping with rage and disbelief as the stage remained empty, the proverbial glass ceiling un-shattered. When Lena Dunham wrote that she felt paralysed by Hillary’s loss, people made fun, but they also saw her point. A plan a lifetime in the making, and this is how it ends? Hillary Clinton did everything right, and Donald Trump did everything ridiculous, and yet: he was the one on the way to the White House.

Of course, this is just one way of thinking about it. The other holds that Hillary was simply a loser — not in the pejorative, Trumpian sense of the word, but in the sense that she was the second-place finisher in a popularity contest for which there was no consolation prize. Hillary was once described by Barack Obama as “likeable enough”, but not enough to win the presidency, and it’s fair to say that she has been more or less obsessed with this ever since. There was the literary autopsy of her failed run for president, aptly titled What Happened; a documentary series, Gutsy, about female success in a sexist culture; the thwarted victory speech repurposed as a Masterclass (in what, one wonders: grudge-holding?). Beneath it all is a palpable bitterness, the 21st-century female politician’s version of Marlon Brandon’s lament from On The Waterfront: I could have been a contender!

And now there is an interview, published in the New York Times ahead of its inclusion in The Fall of Roe, an upcoming book which describes how, “at a moment when women had more power than ever before, the feminist movement suffered one of the greatest political defeats in American history”. The authors are of course referring to the Dobbs decision that left abortion rights in the hands of the states, but they could just as easily be talking about Hillary, who continues to insist that she did not fail, but was failed, by the Democratic Party and its voters. They were the ones who refused to heed her warnings about the threat posed by Trump to abortion rights, to gay rights, to the future of democracy itself; she also fears they are still not listening.

“Most Democrats, most Americans, did not realise we are in an existential struggle for the future of this country,” she says. “This election is existential. I mean, if we don’t make the right decision in this election in our country, we may never have another actual election.” A cynic might point out that this is only the most existential election since the last one, which was the most existential since the last, and so on.

Twenty years ago, on the first Wednesday in November in 2004, I went to use the restroom at work and found a woman my age standing at the sinks, washing her hands and sobbing. I asked if she was okay. “He conceded!” she wailed — the “he” in question being Democratic candidate John Kerry, who had lost the previous day’s election quite unequivocally to the incumbent, George W. Bush.

I thought of this woman on election night in 2016; there seemed to be versions of her everywhere, their features twisted with something wilder and more desperate than mere disappointment. This wasn’t what they wanted, but more than that, it wasn’t what anyone wanted — at least, not anyone they or I knew. Where were these troglodytes pulling the lever for the man who every person in our peer group referred to, groaningly, as “the worst president ever”? Who were they? Did they even exist?

It is an animating sentiment of today’s political discourse that things have only got worse: that we are in an existential struggle for the future of the country against an unseen, unknown, unknowable evil. Republican voters mill about in flyover country, which might as well be another planet; our elections, rather than a banal exercise in choosing our political representatives, have become a proxy battle for our very lives against these roving hordes. And while nobody has quite come right out and said it, there is a distinct sense — evinced by both the Democratic Party leadership and a politically obsessed media class — that Americans face a binary choice come November. You can vote for Joe Biden for president, or you can vote to destroy democracy.

Meanwhile, the possibility that Trump might win legitimately — that indeed, a hazard of a healthy democracy is that the will of the people, sometimes, is to be governed by a buffoon — has been banished to the realm of the inconceivable, as illuminated by Hillary’s dire warning about what will happen if voters don’t make “the right decision”. Gone is the notion of an election as a question to which there are no wrong answers, only majority rule. Gone, too, is any sense that we ought to preserve equanimity in the event that the majority disagrees with us about which candidate is best for the job. In this paradigm, Republican voters are either wrong, as in error, or wrong, as in evil, but either way, they’ve made a terrible mistake.

It’s hard not to see the current state of the discourse as an obvious outgrowth of an earlier phenomenon that Vox writer Emmet Rensin termed the “smug style” in American liberalism, “predicated on the belief that American life is not divided by moral difference or policy divergence — not really — but by the failure of half the country to know what’s good for them”.

It is also hard not to find Hillary’s armchair quarterbacking of the upcoming election a bit rich, considering the source, and particularly when her own smug style is at least partly to blame for getting us into this mess. We all have that highlight reel of cringeworthy moments that runs through our head when we’re awake and anxious at 3am: the verbal fumbles, the jokes that didn’t land, that time a waiter said, “Enjoy your linguini”, and you, an idiot, replied: “You, too!” If I were Hillary Clinton, I would be lying awake at night, wondering how different my life — all our lives — would be, had I never uttered the words, “basket of deplorables”.

But that’s me; the former candidate, on the other hand, seems disinclined toward accepting any culpability for the current state of affairs. Rather, she imagines herself as Cassandra, standing athwart the ignorant public and the ideologically blinkered members of her own party alike, a grandiose notion that appears to have only intensified in the wake of Trump’s conviction. About five minutes after the verdict came in, Hillary took to Instagram to announce the addition of a new product to her merch store: a mug emblazoned with her likeness and the words, “TURNS OUT SHE WAS RIGHT ABOUT EVERYTHING.”

Granted, in some ways — and particularly when it comes to the subject of the book — the told-you-sos aren’t entirely unearned. The “shout your abortion” brand of rhetoric that came to dominate the feminist discourse in the pre-Dobbs years now seems, in hindsight, to stem from a delusional level of confidence about the lasting strength of Roe, as well as a total incomprehension of the strategy of the pro-life movement. And if Hillary had won the presidency, who knows? In addition to sparing us the chaos of the Trump administration, not to mention a Supreme Court stacked with Trump’s conservative picks, perhaps she would have motivated her party to finally codify abortion protections into law, rather than letting them dangle forever by the thread of a single court challenge.

But she didn’t win. He did — and Hillary’s bitterness over this fact continues to get in the way of a realistic accounting as to why. The notion of the Republican candidate and Republican voters as something akin to an alien species reveals a bizarre insensibility as to how much Trump’s schtick is rooted not in conservative tradition, but in the aforementioned smug style that is so prevalent on the Left. When Trump takes to social media on Memorial Day and writes “Happy Memorial Day to All, including the Human Scum that is working so hard to destroy our Once Great Country”, he’s playing to the same contempt that had people chuckling alongside Hillary over the “basket of deplorables” line. When Trump stood in front of a crowd and declared the election had been stolen, he was traveling a path that had been thoroughly pre-greased by four years of open speculation that he was working for Russia, which had hacked the voting machines and tipped the election in his favour. Any sneer we can do, Trump can do better, louder and more shamelessly. The difference is not of kind, but degree.

Around the same time Trump first announced his presidential run, a rumour began to circulate that the bathrooms in his residence were outfitted with solid gold toilets. It wasn’t true, but it’s a remarkably vivid metaphor for his impact on American politics. Trump’s aesthetic is tasteless, ostentatious, vulgar; what’s running through the pipes, however, is just the same old shit. And despite the allegedly unprecedented importance of the forthcoming election, it’s hard to exaggerate how painfully familiar it all seems, like a TV show that has long since jumped the shark. We have the same characters, the same plotlines. We even have the same actual lines, as with Hillary’s interview. Alongside the allegedly unprecedented swipes at her fellow Democrats, she has also taken this opportunity to reprise her eternal grudge against James Comey, whom she believes singlehandedly cost her the election when he raised questions about her use of a private email server during her tenure as Secretary of State, just two weeks before Election Day. “[Once] he did that to me,” she says, “the people, the voters who left me, were women. They left me because they just couldn’t take a risk on me, because as a woman, I’m supposed to be perfect.”

Every time Hillary raises this point — and she’s raised it a lot in the past eight years — I’m struck by how much it sounds like something Donald Trump would say, although he’d probably be more bombastic and throw in a few capitalised, trademark phrases for good measure (Very Unfair!). But the way Hillary talks about patriarchy and sexism is the same way Trump talks about elites and corruption. When she succeeds, it is in spite of these things; but when she loses, it’s because of them, a perfect rhetorical fortress within which her successes are always her doing, while her failures are never her fault.

I’m also struck by the people excluded from this narrative: the ones who were inspired not by her policy positions but by the history-making nature of her candidacy; the ones who checked the box next to her name for no other reason than First Woman President. In other words, the ones who voted for Hillary not in spite of her sex, but because of it.

“The subtext of Hillary’s loss is not that she, as a woman, was forced to play by a different set of rules than Trump. It’s that he beat her at her own game.”

Nobody likes to admit to being one of these people — I know, I was one of them — but Hillary’s campaign benefited enormously from the symbolic blow it allegedly dealt to the patriarchy, just as a certain number of Trump voters were motivated primarily by the thrill of dealing a slap in the face to smug elites. Indeed, the subtext of Hillary’s loss is not that she, as a woman, was forced to play by a different set of rules than Trump. It’s that he beat her at her own game.

What seems abundantly clear now, a flood of donations pours into Trump’s coffers in response to his conviction, is that this game has only ever been a sideshow, a distraction. That’s all well and good for the Republican candidate, who seems to view the presidency primarily as a vehicle for his own self-aggrandisement; this is his circus, these are his monkeys. But the actual business of policy change is happening elsewhere, and as the Dobbs decision shows, we ignore it at our peril.

All the performative resistance in the world won’t secure abortion rights for future generations of women; for that we need old-fashioned legislation and ballot initiatives, and with them, the cooperation and compromise that living in a divided country requires. The aesthetics of empowerment will never be a substitute for the unglamorous work of crafting policies and knocking on doors and persuading people to support your cause. And true, women have more power now than ever before in history — but the thing about women’s power is the thing about any kind of power. It’s not just about having it, or displaying, but using it.


Kat Rosenfield is an UnHerd columnist and co-host of the Feminine Chaos podcast. Her latest novel is You Must Remember This.

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Right-Wing Hippie
Right-Wing Hippie
1 month ago

Hillary was once described by Barack Obama as “likeable enough”
If ever there was a damning indictment of Obama’s judgement of others’ character, this is it. Hillary Clinton is one of the worst politicians I have ever seen. By which I mean that she’s bad at it; she’s really bad at it. In all her attempts to court the votes of the people she comes across as a malfunctioning robot programmed by someone who had once heard of ordinary people. It’s baffling, because her husband is one of the best politicians I’ve ever seen. He was not a great statesman, but he had obvious talents, and the chief disappointment of his presidency was that he squandered said talents pursuing his own appetites. Apparently when Bill was on the stump Hillary, ironically a Tracy-Flick teacher’s pet if ever there was one, was not paying attention.
What I hated about the 2016 election was that we were given a choice between two con artists; I would have preferred a match-up between Bernie Sanders and Ted Cruz, because regardless of what you think of their positions at least they were positions sincerely held, and we could have had a debate by real politicians about real issues. Instead we got those two. Put it like this: advance polling revealed that any generic Democrat would beat Donald Trump by a healthy margin, and any generic Republican would beat Hillary Clinton by an equally healthy margin; it’s a testament to how bad the two candidates were that the election was so close.

Christopher Barclay
Christopher Barclay
1 month ago

Bill advised Hilary not to ignore the flyover states that won the election for Trump. Being a good feminist, however, Hilary ignored a man who had actually won two Presidential elections.

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
1 month ago

Her sole qualification for running for office was marrying Bill

Mark M Breza
Mark M Breza
1 month ago

Melania never showed up !

AJ Mac
AJ Mac
1 month ago

Or maybe her (pre woke era) Yale law degree. What is any first-time candidate’s qualification to run for office–or what should it be?
I presume you think Trump better qualified.

Michael Coleman
Michael Coleman
1 month ago

Yes, the 2016 election had the worst two major party candidates until being surpassed in 2020 by Trump-Biden. Parliamentarians everywhere are laughing at our broken electoral process.
Hopefully, the Stalinist lawfare by Democrats causes Biden to be added to the list of sore losers this year – Kat can then re-write this piece as “Trump is Moby d**k to Hillary and Biden”

AJ Mac
AJ Mac
1 month ago

I agree with your concluding paragraph. Hilary was indeed a terrible candidate, far worse than any recent presidential also-ran, even the schlumpy automaton Dukakis and equally charm-free Dole.
But the vague, non-committal phrase “likeable enough” is not a character judgment at all. In context it relates to often superficial personality traits and public perception. As you aptly highlight, Bill had the gift of gab and a largely wasted charisma. Hilary has moral character, but perhaps even less humility and more arrogance than her slick rogue of a husband. Said as it was during a pre-nomination debate in 2008, “likeable enough” sounds more like a way to avoid angering Hilary-committed voters, mostly women, and those who were still winnable for Barack.

0 0
0 0
1 month ago

Bingo! Spot-on, on all counts.
One morning during the 2016 campaign a local radio talk show host here in Southwest Connecticut was holding forth at length concerning the two candidates, after which he asked rhetorically in a plaintive tone of voice: “My God! Is THIS the best that we can do?” Well, in America we were taught from grammar school on that we “govern ourselves.” If so and leaving aside the fact that this notion is quite possibly constitutionally dubious, the only answer is YES.

laurence scaduto
laurence scaduto
1 month ago

I too am surrounded by progressive true believers; family, friends, neighbors. I am acutely aware of their opinions because they talk about them constantly. I struggle to change the subject.
Many of UnHerd’s readers (and writers) have gone through changes in recent years, just like those that I have. I imagine Ms. Rosenfield has too. That’s not a reason to criticize any of us.
I thought this essay was both astute and fun; a good combo and typical for Rosenfield.
More, please. And thankyou.

Mark M Breza
Mark M Breza
1 month ago

Both seem like big cry babies.
And yes Kat is right they use the same excuse for their loss
The United State is rigged ?
Funny, if it is that easy to manipulate the Amerikan government
would would anyone go back to a failed governing system !

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
1 month ago

Google “Bill and Hillary, Trump wedding,” to see photos of the love fest between them. They were clearly best of friends, with Hillary genuinely glowing and Bill with his hands on Trump, and Melania laughing genuinely as Trump told some story.
Then Google “Clinton and Trump golfing” to see a photo of Trump handing off his old mistress “a Sports Illustrated” swimsuit model, to Bill. She’s wearing a Playboy Bunny tee shirt, to signal she’s all in.
They only fell out when they both wanted the top prize.

Y Chromosome
Y Chromosome
1 month ago

 “This wasn’t what they wanted, but more than that, it wasn’t what anyone wanted — at least, not anyone they or I knew. Where were these troglodytes pulling the lever for the man who every person in our peer group referred to, groaningly, as “the worst president ever”?”
If Kat was just a little bit self-aware, this sentence would have leapt from her computer and bonked her in the head. She is shouting to the world that she lives in an insulated bubble that excludes anyone whose opinions aren’t a mirror image of her own. That, by itself, is more than a mere clue that she also virtue-signals about her love of diversity.
But I can understand that Kat admires Hillary as a feminist icon. Hillary has always been an example to young women, promoting the message that whom a woman marries will define her and her chances for life. It is precious that Hillary, of course, is contemptuous of Tulsi Gabbard, who had the temerity to rise to national prominence on her own accomplishments.
I also found Kat’s comment about ‘flyover country’ charming. No nose-in-the-air pomposity there. Not much.

Lancashire Lad
Lancashire Lad
1 month ago
Reply to  Y Chromosome

I agree. The author was steadily rising in my estimation following a series of incisive articles, but this diatribe has set her way back down again.

It reminds me of the attitudes displayed by establishment Remainers towards those (including myself) who voted for Brexit, as if it were a form of insanity.

J Bryant
J Bryant
1 month ago
Reply to  Y Chromosome

I must admit I interpreted this article differently from you. The article relies on the author’s self-awareness in relation to her beliefs, and her peer group’s beliefs, about Trump and the Republicans. She is able to stand outside those beliefs and explain them to us. She’s also able to recognize what her peers couldn’t, or wouldn’t, recognize: that Hillary was an unlikeable, smug person who believed she deserved to be president and that the wishes of the electorate were mostly irrelevant.
The world is going through a period of profound change and our political systems simply haven’t caught up yet. In the meantime, we’ll be treated to the gerontocracy (Hillary, Trump, Biden…) squabbling among themselves about old grievances until a new generation of leaders emerge.

AJ Mac
AJ Mac
1 month ago
Reply to  J Bryant

Excellent comment. She may have spent some of her built up trust among certain subscribers by announcing her already quite obvious side of the love-him/hate-him divide. But Rosenfield displays far more self-awareness and ability to laugh at herself than most politicians of any stripe.
Three things that Hilary shares with Donald whether she can face it or not: arrogance, self-pity that flirts with a persecution complex, and a complete inability to laugh at oneself. In Hilary’s case, she can’t even laugh in a way that sounds convincingly human.

Michael McElwee
Michael McElwee
1 month ago
Reply to  J Bryant

Yes, but she missed the answer to her own question. By that I mean: Why did the “basket of deplorables” comment cause so many to fling themselves into the arms of Donald Trump, and what’s more, why do they keep on flinging and with ever greater desperation?

No sooner did the French dedicate themselves to “liberty, fraternity, equality” than one could hear the gallows coming together. In time, some 265,000 “innocent” people died on those gallows. It was not the conservatives who sent so many to their deaths. No, it was the conservatives who did the dying.

“Innocence will come only at the end of history,” said Hegel. The left longs for all those on the right to be history. Starting with the youngest of all and thus the most innocent of all.

The left used to be on the side of, for example, the 38 year old woman, living in Belding, Michigan, 15 years after the appliance manufacturers ditched that town for cheaper labor in the far east. She is now twice divorced, her children are addicted to meth, and she has exactly nothing to hope for. She is the kind of person the Democratic Party once protected, but now sneers at, as Ms. Clinton did so shamelessly.

Go ahead and hate Donald Trump. You only make his point by doing so.

Jacqui Denomme
Jacqui Denomme
1 month ago

I’m Canadian so don’t have much skin in this game aside from the fact that I date an American and I’ve long been interested in American politics. I have generally voted left in my own Canadian elections (but not this time upcoming) When Hilary made that ‘basket of deplorables’ comment, I was done with her, for life. The cynicism, mean-ness lack of class and whatever it was that prompted her to say that about her fellow Americans showed her up to be much less than who I thought she was. I enjoyed her early book ‘It Takes a Village’ and had found, back in the Reagan/Bush days, that Republicans seemed a little on the mean side, all their going on about political correctness and their seemingly irrational hatred/fear of ‘liberals’. But during Covid, all the tables shifted. My own Liberal Prime Minister expressed the very same ‘mean-ness’ as Hilary. I had grown to expect a little ‘mean-ness’ from conservatives (think Ann Coulter) but not from the left. So, yeah, I guess I admire kindness and respect from my politicians, whatever stripe. If I could choose, I’d vote for Rand Paul, or Robert F. Kennedy, or Vivek Ramaswamy. None seem mean. Trump’s meanness I don’t mind, because he never tried to portray himself as anything different and for some reason, I don’t have that flaming fear that he is a threat to democracy. I am thinking that ‘threat to democracy’ means, actually ‘threat to crony capitalism’ to the left. Everything is all mixed up these days. So glad to have such reasonable commentary and great articles on Unherd. Even if I don’t agree with every single thought, i appreciate greatly the respectful tenor of the discussion and the attempts to sort out something approaching truthfulness.

Michael McElwee
Michael McElwee
1 month ago
Reply to  Jacqui Denomme

The left cannot allow anything it disagrees with to live.

AJ Mac
AJ Mac
1 month ago

Can any color penetrate your black-and-white lenses?

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
1 month ago
Reply to  Y Chromosome

I think the article tells us a lot about the insularity and self-absorption of American politics – particularly the feminist variety – because of what it leaves out.

No discussion at all of Hillary’s disastrous record as chief enabler of the Iraq war, her role, and that of other ‘feminist icons’, in the Ukraine debacle, or her crowning achievement, the casual and utterly pointless destruction of civil society in Libya, not to mention all the innocent lives lost.

Yet we’re supposed to accept an equivalence between this feminist Caligula and a bloke who put out some mean tweets, but whose tenure in office was otherwise relatively benevolent.

No thanks.

Stephanie Surface
Stephanie Surface
1 month ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

I agree, most of what she touched as Secretary of State ended in disaster. It can be summarised by her behaviour during and after the disaster of Benghazi. Her hypocrisy and total lack of self-awareness couldn’t be more obvious, misleading the public and the grieving relatives of the killed brave Americans for days. The State Departement was warned well in advance of a planned terrorist attack on the mission in Benghazi at the anniversary of 9/11, but it all was conveniently changed to “a spontaneous riot by locals” in Susan Rice’s Talking Points. Later at the Senate Hearing Hilary angrily proclaimed: “What difference does it make!”

Michael Layman
Michael Layman
1 month ago

This is why I knew Hillary would lose the election. She quit as Secretary of State on the verge of a breakdown. If she is a quitter on the cabinet, she sure as hell won’t be president.

tug ordie
tug ordie
1 month ago
Reply to  Y Chromosome

Kat is obviously throwing her voice here, that isn’t her but the stereotypical coastal liberal

AJ Mac
AJ Mac
1 month ago
Reply to  Y Chromosome

It is a self-aware reflection on Rosenfield own cluelessness at the time. I think you’re misreading her ironic and self-critical tone here.

Y Chromosome
Y Chromosome
1 month ago
Reply to  AJ Mac

Maybe so.

laurence scaduto
laurence scaduto
1 month ago
Reply to  Y Chromosome

I too am surrounded by progressive true believers; family, friends, neighbors. I am acutely aware of their opinions because they talk about them constantly. I struggle to change the subject.
Many of UnHerd’s readers (and writers) have gone through changes in recent years, just like those that I have. I imagine Ms. Rosenfield has too. That’s not a reason to criticize any of us.
I thought this essay was both astute and fun; a good combo and typical for Rosenfield.
More, please. And thankyou.

Stephanie Surface
Stephanie Surface
1 month ago
Reply to  Y Chromosome

I think most of the article was written tongue-in-cheek.

T Bone
T Bone
1 month ago

I completely disagree with the type world that Kat wants to live in but at least she can “coexist” with people that don’t think like her.

I wonder how many Subaru drivers with Co-exist stickers can tolerate people that argue in favor of fossil fuel usage or against the utility of Indigenous Land Acknowledgements

AJ Mac
AJ Mac
1 month ago
Reply to  T Bone

Or gun rack and Confederate Flag on pickup truck type Americans tolerate those of your valid stereotype.
I think you’d assert that there be more tolerance coming from the pickup crowd and I’d be inclined to agree–but it’s not a landslide victory on one side or the other.

ChilblainEdwardOlmos
ChilblainEdwardOlmos
1 month ago

“We came. We Saw. He died. ( delighted laughter). That tells you everything you need to know about that obtuse, sociopathic, narcissist.

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
1 month ago

obtuse, sociopathic, narcissist
You’re being much too kind.

ChilblainEdwardOlmos
ChilblainEdwardOlmos
1 month ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

Damning with faint praise was I?

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
1 month ago

During the 1
2016 primaries, Hillary and Republican candidate Marco Rubio one upped each other in promising to invade Syria, which was (and still is) in the midst of the bloody civil war. She wanted to defeat both sides an impose some sort of … something or another.
One side was Sunni “rebels” (jihadis), while the other side was a secular Arab dictatorship backed by Iran, Hezbollah an Russia. Russia has had two military bases there for many years.
Hillary wanted to conquer them all.
Amazingly, few media outlets commented on this, even though it would have been far more disastrous than Bush’s invasion of Iraq.
Perhaps the lack of response is because few Americans, even educated ones, can find Syria on a world map.

Bottom line: Hillary would have continued starting wars overseas. Trump avoided starting any new wars.

Case closed. Trump was the better choice.

AJ Mac
AJ Mac
1 month ago
Reply to  UnHerd Reader

Just almost started a civil war, and still workin’ on it. By the way, neither Biden nor Obama started any wars. Not a single one.

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
1 month ago
Reply to  AJ Mac

Perhaps you should read up on the so-called 2011 ‘civil war’ in Libya. I can recommend the report of the Parliamentary Committee on Foreign Affairs published in 2014.

Jonathan Nash
Jonathan Nash
1 month ago

“Feminist icon”?? Tell that to all the young women she went after to protect Bill. She is vile.

Katharine Eyre
Katharine Eyre
1 month ago

What I’ve taken from this is that politics in the USA has degenerated into round after round of infantile mudslinging where each side is as bad as the other but says it’s all the other’s fault and no-one takes accountability for their own mistakes. And, at the end of the day, this rubbish, tedious soap opera drags on at the cost of governing, or, in the worst case scenario, the Republic itself.

Urgh, Hillary. So sad how she has negated all of the strides forward she made for women by allowing herself to sink into victimhood when the loss was her own fault. I was never more than a casual observer of USA politics but knew in an instant that the “basket of deplorables” comment would be her undoing. It would do her, and politics in general, good to admit that publicly.

Simon Templar
Simon Templar
1 month ago
Reply to  Katharine Eyre

If politics have degenerated into mudslinging, Obama started the ball rolling. He played the race card with venom, adopting Trayvon Martin as a symbol of systemic racism. Republicans were shocked at being accused, not of being wrong, but being evil – and reluctantly recruited a brawler in Trump to fight their corner. I don’t think middle America likes it either, but at some point you have to return to an electoral and judicial system which is manifestly fair to all, and trust the majority. Which is what democracy is supposed to mean. Not MMA fighting.

B. Timothy S.
B. Timothy S.
1 month ago
Reply to  Katharine Eyre

The truth is we’re all so fat and these elections so meaningless to our wellbeing that it’s become a circus with the clowns vying for our entertainment.

Saul D
Saul D
1 month ago

Hillary was/is a schemer who has surrounded herself with schemers – the ultimate insider. President Bill was her project. In 2016 it was her turn, after frustratingly waiting for Obama to do his eight years. Consequently, her interest in becoming president always had the undercurrent that it wasn’t for the good of America, but because she had to be the first woman president – her prize, her trophy, with her. “Deplorables” was the moment the reality of the deeper, darker schemes came to the surface. Hillary isn’t the smooth smoocher of her husband, and let internal deliberations come out and dashed her against the rocks of hubris.
What that meant was just scheme harder. Hoax upon hoax since 2016. In the background are Hillary and her shadow schemers running with their media surrogates stirring in talking points and smears. The ‘with her’ crew are still with her and seeking revenge.
The result was after the Democrats lost in 2016 they became the most dangerous political party America has ever seen. There are no boundaries – smears, lies, censorship, abuse of the legal system, prosecutorial misbehaviour, spying on citizens, imprisoning protestors, driving people out of jobs, making war without approval, ignoring criminals, manipulating the media, bending institutions to their command.
Hillary may have abandoned her presidential ambitions, but no-one believes Biden is in charge. In the background are the schemers pulling strings and using lawfare, protected from view by a media who doesn’t report on them and runs with their talking points. They don’t even do comedy sketches about Joe Biden’s failings. The long term lesson, is so long as the president is compliant, it doesn’t matter who the president is.

Michael Layman
Michael Layman
1 month ago
Reply to  Saul D

As you note, Biden is not in charge. The Democratic(Socialist) party run the presidency.

Michael Askew
Michael Askew
1 month ago

What the pro-abortionists fail to see is the strength of the pro-life argument. At 18 weeks, with a full complement of limbs, moving around in the womb and clearly visible with 3-D ultrasound techniques, many see this as a tiny human. Abortionists see this as an inconvenience. To win the argument and change the legislation, abortionists need to show clearly why this is not a human being.

Lancashire Lad
Lancashire Lad
1 month ago
Reply to  Michael Askew

No they don’t, and neither is this relevant to the article. Abortion has enough articles of its own without trying to hijack articles which concern something else of major import.

Ellen Evans
Ellen Evans
1 month ago

Ms. Rosenfeld, Presidential elections in the United States are not a simple matter of “only majority rule,” except with respect to the electoral votes apportioned among the 50 states.
There is very good reason for that.
If you are going to write about the electoral process of this nation, at least take the trouble to know, understand, and articulate it in basic.
While you do make some decent points – and have made better ones on other topics – this failing taints the entire piece.

Christopher Barclay
Christopher Barclay
1 month ago

Strange, no mention that Hilary used the millions Bill made to steal the Democrat nomination from Bernie Sanders. A feminist icon?

Micael Gustavsson
Micael Gustavsson
1 month ago

Steal? In what way did she “steal” it from Sanders? Did Trump steal the republican nomination from Cruz or Rubio?

Micael Gustavsson
Micael Gustavsson
1 month ago
Reply to  Saul D

I have read your links, but I fail to see how the establishment supporting andcampaigning for the establishment candidate is “stealing”. Doesn’t stealing have to mean either preventing people to vote, or inventing votes that doesn’t exist. Neither of the articles linked mentioned any like that.

Saul D
Saul D
1 month ago

The DNC committee was supposed to be candidate neutral by their own rules – Sanders was supposed to have equal treatment. He didn’t as the emails showed. Instead HFA campaign had entwined the DNC to its ends, manipulating DNC finances into the HFA campaign to get around funding limits, and even getting help in the debates. https://www.politico.com/story/2017/03/donna-brazile-hillary-clinton-leak-regret-236184
The Bernie-bros inside the DNC were not happy at the connivance at the time, but all eventually rolled over when Hlllary became the candidate. So if it’s about the word ‘steal’ would ‘rigged’, ‘corrupted’, ‘fitted up’ be better?

Micael Gustavsson
Micael Gustavsson
1 month ago
Reply to  Saul D

Maybe even unfair.

Peter B
Peter B
1 month ago

Not directly related, but you might want to do some research on her quite remarkable commodities trading record while Bill was Governor of Arkansas.

Micael Gustavsson
Micael Gustavsson
1 month ago
Reply to  Peter B

Isn’t that the whole Whitewater thing. If I remember correctly, the only thing the republican investigation uncovered of that was Clintons shenanigans with Monica Lewinsky. But yes, Mr Clinton was in many ways a shady character.

David Barnett
David Barnett
1 month ago

Mrs Clinton did, of course, win the popular vote in 2016.

Ellen Evans
Ellen Evans
1 month ago
Reply to  David Barnett

And that’s her consolation prize. There’s very good reason we are not simply a democracy, but a democratic republic. Democracy unconstrained is mob rule.

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
1 month ago
Reply to  David Barnett

So?

Norfolk Sceptic
Norfolk Sceptic
1 month ago
Reply to  David Barnett

Mrs Clinton did have the most ballots, or images of them, at least.

Peter B
Peter B
1 month ago
Reply to  David Barnett

So what ? It doesn’t matter. She knew the rules of the game when she entered it.
She lost an election a competent, trustworthy candidate would have won. Pretty much all her own fault. She still refuses to own it. Same delusions as mnany of the Remain leaders over the Brexit vote. It’s always someone else’s fault for these people.
It’s in the tone of this article too with the tag “undeserving” attached to Trump. We’re not the judges here. The US electorate decided who was deserving.

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
1 month ago

You feel sorry for Hilary?!!
I didn’t bother to read any more.

Bromley Man
Bromley Man
1 month ago

Well, she was a contender who lost by a narrow margin. As soon as FBI insufferable James Comey interfered, the electoral damage was done. And this is not retrospective analysis, I thought it when it happened and groaned.

Alex Lekas
Alex Lekas
1 month ago
Reply to  Bromley Man

This is a woman who violated multiple laws as Secretary of State, sold the influence of that office using the Clinton Foundation as the bagman, and engineered the Russia collusion hoax and Steele dossier. Blaming her loss on Comey requires a unique brand of myopia and ignoring of reality.

Ardath Blauvelt
Ardath Blauvelt
1 month ago

The idea that being allowed to terminate life at any point in its development, is all that matters in a woman’s life, is inconceivable. That this “right” is the definition of power, is frightening. It is incomprehensible. Heaven keep us from leadership based on the power over life and death.

Chipoko
Chipoko
1 month ago

” … a feminist icon who will nevertheless always be remembered for coming second to an undeserving man.”
How about ‘a feminist bigot who came second to a man who bettered her on the day’?

General Store
General Store
1 month ago

Pointless exercise in ‘both sides, and’. Trump for all his flaws (and at this stage I don’t care) is trying to save America and the west from woke-suicide. Clinton is driving the destruction of American democracy and all the norms and institutions that made the West a better civilization than any other in history. This is boring and empty commentary

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 month ago

Hillary Clinton is and always has been a calculating machine who married a scheming lowlife pervert in order to build a political career, thus satisfying a very strange lust few actual humans possess.
She had one child for purely political reasons, boasting that she wasn’t the stay-at-home-baking-cookies type (no sh*t: she was busy defending child rapists and helping her grotesque spouse import cocaine into Arkansas when he wasn’t banging the local trailer park talent).
There is simply no defense of this historically odious woman, whose crimes include murder. I don’t care a fig what this author or anyone else thinks of Donald Trump: there is no comparison whatsoever to Clinton. She is epically horrific.

AJ Mac
AJ Mac
1 month ago

So who is Melania? Are Trump’s children good people?
“whose crimes include murder”
How so, with what proof? You need to get a grip or dial it back on what you consider to be a fact, even when it comes to your enemies.

Courtney Maloney
Courtney Maloney
1 month ago
Reply to  AJ Mac

Melania is Trump’s wife and the (reluctant?) former, First Lady. The end. Not only has she never been on a ballot, I’d bet my literal farm she possess zero aspirations for such lunacy.

I’m struggling to understand the relevance of asking Allison if Trump’s children are “good people”? Also, please define “good”.

I believe the accusations of murder are centered upon culpability; perhaps Benghazi, perhaps the odd number of the unalive folks that were once in the Clinton circle.

T Redd
T Redd
1 month ago

let’s remember, slimy Hillary was also fined $100K for her payments to the dude for the Steele Dossier. No court trial, just pay the fine for election disinformation. Hillary is not a real woman. We are sure she is a robot.

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
1 month ago

The very idea that the party of weaponizing the Executive branch and court system represents democracy is absurd. So-called liberals do not wish us to have any liberty and Democrats do not intend to give us democracy. They intend to force their views and policies on all of us with liberty, freedom and democracy being forever damned.

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
1 month ago

Here we are, still where we always have been. Winston Churchill said, you don’t have to understand politics: you have to understand politicians. HRC is a human we can understand: there is a livid, gruesome trail behind her of personal and political debacles, and a thinking person of any human experience will conclude, rightly, that the stench rising from this heap stretching from her present to her past cannot be uncoupled from the character of this woman, her very own self. The deeper we dig, the more we despair of finding redemption, for her or us, in this search. What a tangled web indeed, from when she first practiced to deceive – a very, very long time ago. And here it is: she has only herself to blame for what might have been.

Alex Lekas
Alex Lekas
1 month ago

How is this woman a feminist icon? Her entire career is owed to having married Bill. That’s it. There was nothing remarkable about her time in the Senate or as Sec of State, and twice she snatched defeat from the jaws of victory while angling for the big job. Unlike Hillary, the people who started hating Trump before he ran for office loved him, Herself included. She has never been likable. Her only attribute was being female.
All the performative resistance in the world won’t secure abortion rights for future generations of women; for that we need old-fashioned legislation and ballot initiatives, and with them, the cooperation and compromise that living in a divided country requires. —> That was in place. It was called Roe v Wade. But someone on the left decided that a Mississippi law that allowed abortion at up to 15 weeks – longer than Roe itself and in line with most of Europe – was not enough. The rest is the left getting what it asked for.

Francisco Menezes
Francisco Menezes
1 month ago

Hillary Clinton is proof that there is a benevolent, provident God. He ensured that she did not become POTUS and sent us an orange haired St. George to combat the evil sin of arkancide.

Champagne Socialist
Champagne Socialist
1 month ago

I really enjoy how you mugs seem to think that Clinton couldn’t get over her election defeat but you are all good with Trump’s ludicrous pity party.

Peter B
Peter B
1 month ago

It’s not what we think – it’s a fact that she still hasn’t got over it.
Just as it’s a fact that she never came out and made a concession speech in 2016 when she lost.
Yes, Trump’s a bad loser too. But not in the same class as Hillary.

Geoff W
Geoff W
1 month ago

The slogan on the mugs is the woman in a nutshell: solipsistic, smug, and verbose.
If she had an ounce of political nous, she would have gone for “Lock Him Up!”

Victoria Cooper
Victoria Cooper
1 month ago

There is some parallel with our two candidates, many of the population not wanting either. But at least we have an active third proposal to kick them about a bit. Not so in US.

Nancy Kmaxim
Nancy Kmaxim
1 month ago

I really enjoyed the candid sounding expression of viewpoint, but the authors apparent ignorance of the function of the US constitution and Supreme Court and the existence and purpose of the electoral college makes it difficult to take objective opinion seriously. I can’t agree that Hillary Clinton lost her bids for President because she wasn’t clever enough, and whether or not you like her policy positions her multiple breaches of personal and professional ethics have been arrogant and on public display. She simply lost and the constant whining is quite tedious. Politics certainly resembles daytime TV, but a choice must be made.

Peter G
Peter G
1 month ago

Here’s the problem. The Democrats gave us Donald Trump, and may again. By putting up as their candidate the thoroughly unlikeable Hillary, with her long trail of compromised ethics building up to the phony Russian conspiracy as the lynch-pin of her campaign, they gave us the only candidate who could lose to Trump. Fast forward 8 years, and they are putting forward a senile old man who, in his best days, had no principles, bent with the political winds, collude with his corrupt son to enrich the family, and repeatedly lied about his background. He might be the only Democrat who could lose to Trump this year. It’s time for the Democrats to accept that they largely have themselves to blame for the election of their most despised candidate.

Jake Raven
Jake Raven
1 month ago

Clinton is a bitter, twisted, characterless woman with no charm or grace, and cannot bear to believe Americans chose Trump. Her sanctimony is classic of so many on the left that have an absolute conviction that they are always right and find it impossible to believe people have different views to them.
But at least in the States they have a choice between two sides of the political divide, I envy them that. What do we have? A uniparty, no matter who we vote for at the GE the policies will be much the same.

JR Hartley
JR Hartley
1 month ago

The abortion question is entirely a Democrat failure. When Biden was first elected, the Dems held both houses. Did they make the access to abortion a federal right? No! They prevaricated to avoid pissing of the anti’s in their own party.

Daniel Patrick
Daniel Patrick
1 month ago

Hilary is a criminal, who should be in jail. Here’s why:
Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server during her tenure as Secretary of State was a major point of controversy. The FBI investigation into her email practices revealed that she had a private email server set up in her home in Chappaqua, New York, which she used from January 2009 until 2013. The FBI publicly detailed its findings in a statement on July 5, 2016, where Director James Comey discussed the investigation and its conclusions.
You can read the full FBI statement here (Federal Bureau of Investigation) (Wikipedia) (PolitiFact).
I only read the first paragraph of your article, and then I started chuckling, thinking that you would get slaughtered in the comments. Surprisingly, you didn’t.
I will go back and read the rest later, because I assume you don’t mention it? I assume you don’t even know about it? Because if you do, judging by your first paragraph: wtf
I work in IT. If you install a second email server at your home when you’re secretary of State, it’s to do lots of illegal things undetected. No other reason. It’s a crime in itself. Whatever other rationalisations or justifications the democrats made up for the fact she’s not in jail are lies. It really is that simple.

mike otter
mike otter
1 month ago

What strikes me is the irony of the grieving, ululating white bourgeios women mentioned in the article. They put their faith in a shower of Alinsky gangs, Antifa, Crips, Hamas, et al and hedged their bets with Tech Bro con-artists – they wonder why they lost? Their alliance of crooks prevailed for Biden through the old fashioned means of electoral fraud, so beloved of both GOP and Demrats over the years. Like most people I think Trump is unsuited to high office, and its clear that Cruz or De Santis are the sort we need. Trump is the least worst choice for November 24 and that is bad news for USA and the rest of the world.

Bret Larson
Bret Larson
1 month ago

Id like to say that I wouldn’t vote Trump. Unfortunately, I would have to vote for him because of his actual governance record compared to Biden.
And its the same with Hilary.
It only takes one question, which of them would govern for the most Americans?
The answer is not Biden of Hilary. Which is pretty sad.

UnHerd Reader
UnHerd Reader
1 month ago

this is the second article by this person and the writing is proving to be hopelessly callow and shallow. I recently subscribed to UnHerd but i’m beginning to realize that half the journalists here are pumping out the same awful ‘writing’ that Karl Kraus warned of. Sheesh!

Randy Brenner-Leifer
Randy Brenner-Leifer
1 month ago

You have nothing new or interesting to say about Hillary Clinton. She is ancient history and you are very boring. Find a new topic please.

Kerry Davie
Kerry Davie
1 month ago

‘…….the ones who were inspired not by her policy positions but by the history-making nature of her candidacy;…’
And that encapsulates why she should not have won, as indeed she did not. She lost because she’s a vile person, and a lot of people recognised that.

Harrydog
Harrydog
9 days ago

Is Trump an obnoxious narcissist? Yes. But it is important to note that he pursued a range of policy objectives at home and abroad that he advanced against a tide a Democratic authored and engineered scandals that had been evident even before the election. Who paid for the Steele dossier after all? You can disagree with policies; fair enough. The border was relatively secure; the US exported oil and gas; the economy was growing; Putin was quiet; Iran was boxed in; the Abraham Accords were laying the basis for an Israeli and moderate Arab consensus to counter the regions bad actors; a road map to get out of Afghanistan was drafted. Then Covid hit, followed by the supposed moderate unifier Biden who has proven to be tool of the far left. (The Democrats have gone on the demonstrate their obsession with power at all cost and by any means necessary.)