A significant number of Americans decided in 2016 that Democrat presidential nominee Hillary Clinton was simply an inauthentic and unlikable person, and it appears that number would include at least some of her campaign staffers.
According to The U.K. Guardian, who got their hands on an advance copy of a new book documenting Clinton’s failed White House run, her lack of authenticity and unlikability were touchy subjects that the candidate and her staff were compelled to address behind the scenes.
Titled “Chasing Hillary: Ten Years, Two Presidential Campaigns and One Intact Glass Ceiling,” the book was written by New York Times reporter Amy Chozick. And it offers yet another glimpse inside the former secretary of state’s dysfunctional run for the presidency, including the abuse she dished out toward her own staffers.
During preparations for one of the presidential debates, while still fuming over media reports which questioned her “authenticity,” Clinton reportedly yelled, “You want authentic, here it is!”
Chozick wrote that the sudden outburst prefaced a “f—laced fusillade about what a ‘disgusting’ human being Trump was and how he didn’t deserve to even be in the arena.”
“Aides understood that in order to keep it all together onstage, Hillary sometimes needed to unleash on them in private,” Chozick wrote as a sort of explanation for why campaign staffers tolerated the abuse they received from their boss.
The book also offered other anecdotal highlights of how dysfunctional Clinton’s campaign staff was. For example, an unnamed top donor allegedly tried to convince Clinton’s right-hand woman, Huma Abedin, to step aside well before the campaign even began due to the disgraceful sexual scandals surrounding her estranged husband, Anthony Weiner.
That effort was to no avail, though, as Abedin insisted she excelled at her job and such a decision would be left up to Clinton. Obviously, Abedin was never removed from her position at Clinton’s side.
Another example of the dysfunction can be seen in how the relatively younger staffers on Clinton’s campaign viewed their candidate’s husband, former President Bill Clinton, and particularly the many allegations of sexual misconduct launched against him over the years.
Clinton reportedly “erupted” when she learned that staunch supporter and liberal actress Lena Dunham had expressed how “disturbed” she was to learn of how the former president’s accusers were allegedly mistreated by the Clinton political machine in the 1990s.
Sexual misconduct reputation aside, the book also revealed that Clinton’s campaign paid little heed to the advice it received from the former two-term president, who obviously knew a thing or two about winning elections.
Specifically, campaign manager Robby Mook would listen “patiently, respectfully” to campaign strategy advice from Bill Clinton, only to say and do something different afterward.
“But (Mook) mostly saw in the former president a relic, a brilliant tactician of a bygone era,” Chozick wrote. “Behind his back, Robby did a Bill impersonation (‘And let me tell you another thing about the white working class …’) waving a finger in a Clintonian motion.”
Chozick wrote, “By late February, Bill went red in the face on almost daily conference calls trying to warn (Clinton campaign headquarters) that Trump had a shrewd understanding of the angst that so many voters — his voters, the white working class whom Clinton brought back to the Democratic party in 1992 — were feeling.”
Perhaps some of those campaign staffers have realized in retrospect that they should have paid attention to what the former president was trying to tell them. Alas, Bill Clinton’s admonitions fell on deaf ears as his wife’s campaign did more to alienate those voters than reach out to them. And of course, we know how that decision turned out for them in November 2016.
Too bad the staffers had to suffer so much abuse and dysfunction just to lose an election which pretty much everyone assumed they would win.
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