Feminist presidential candidate Hillary Clinton announced her economic policy over the weekend in Kentucky. And here it is: she will hubby in charge!
Hillary Clinton has always been the sort of Feminist Establishment figure whose achievements, such as they are, might not on their own have been entirely sufficient to launch a White House run without the overweening presence in her life of hubby Bill.
Hillary only underlined this with the remarks in Kentucky. Indeed, John Hinderacker of Power Line thinks the Bill announcement might have been a big mistake in part for this very reason:
Hillary’s promise to bring back Bill and put him “in charge of” the economy is, I think, a horrible blunder. Here’s why. . . .
First, it undermines the entire rationale of Hillary’s candidacy.
That’s right. If Bill is responsible for the economy, the number one priority of most voters, isn’t he the real president? Is Hillary just a surrogate? Doesn’t she have her own ideas about some of the most important matters facing the country?
Hillary’s promise to bring back Bill reminds voters that her career has always been secondary to his. She got her start in public life as a First Lady, initially First Lady of Arkansas, then of the United States. Hillary had no conceivable basis for running for the Senate in New York other than the fact that she was First Lady. She has always ridden Bill’s coattails. Is that the profile we want in a presidential candidate?
Second, the assumption that fond memories of the 1990s are the key to victory is misplaced. Hillary has been forced to disavow most of her husband’s economic policies, which Bernie Sanders supporters–the mainstream of the Democratic Party–abhor.
Yes, Hubby as economic czar is an all the more fascinating proposition given that Mrs. Clinton doesn't espouse his old policies. As the Wall Street Journal notes:
Mrs. Clinton’s remarks are a revealing turn, not least because so far she’s been running for President Obama’s third term. But since Democrats seem to agree that the economic status quo is dismal, and thus they can’t run on Mr. Obama’s record, the presumptive nominee is trying to confuse voters with halcyon memories of the 1990s boom.
The Clinton gang has since “clarified” that Mr. Clinton’s ministrations will be confined to distressed U.S. regions like inner cities or coal country. Maybe they realized that vowing to outsource one of her most important jobs might diminish her as a candidate.
Her larger problem is that the Obama-era Democratic Party has repudiated the Democratic Party’s Bill-era centrist agenda. They now call themselves progressives, not New Democrats, and they take their marching orders from Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, not Larry Summers and Alan Greenspan. Mrs. Clinton has accommodated this trend to the pre-Bill left.
Unlike many conservative women, who have arrived on the scene because of their own exertions and talent, HRC has never been a self-made woman. Be interesting to see if she can ride Bill's coattails to the White House.
Maybe a good campaign theme song is "My Guy" (with apologies to Mary Wells and Aretha Franklin).