Donald Trump’s attacks on Hillary Clinton, for her long association with sex offenders, including enabling Bill Clinton and denigrating a young rape victim, and on Bill Clinton, for being a sexual predator have drawn blood. They have reduced Bill Clinton to campaigning only with very friendly crowds and have even the left agreeing that Hillary’s vagina-powered candidacy rings false when it is viewed in the light of her own actions.
On Sunday, she was asked about Trump’s attacks on CBS’s Face the Nation:
Trump has spent weeks attacking former President Bill Clinton on the campaign trail, calling him “one of the great abusers of the world” and comparing him to Bill Cosby, who is facing sexual assault allegations.
“If he wants to engage in personal attacks from the past, that’s his prerogative,” she said. “I’m going to draw the distinctions between where I stand and where he stands,” especially on issues like equal pay and the minimum wage.
“He can say whatever he wants to about me. Let the voters judge that, but I am not going to let him or any of the other Republicans rip away the progress that women have made,” Clinton said. “It’s been too hard fought for and I’m going to stand up and make it clear there’s a huge difference between us.”
Even some Democrats say that part of her husband’s career is fair game, moderator John Dickerson pointed out. Clinton said Republicans can try it again if they want, but it “didn’t work before, won’t work again.”
“I can’t run anybody else’s campaign. They can say whatever they want, more power to them,” she said. “I think it’s a dead end, blind alley for them but let ’em go.”
But what has changed since the 90s, which is where Clinton seems to be living, is immense. A good chunk of the electorate has mostly forgotten Bill Clinton’s history as a sexual predator or simply are unaware of it. The way society views sexual attacks, or even only barely credible allegations of sexual attacks, has changed. The media business is so competitive that no one can afford to not cover a story rife with controversy. More importantly, the allegation is not as political at it was during the Lewinsky affair. Hillary Clinton has said rape victims are entitled to be believed and she has made her simulacrum of womanhood the only thing she is running on. So Trump’s attacks are not tangential, rather they strike directly at the heart of Clinton’s campaign.
And the best way to guarantee Trump will not leave this alone is to public challenge him to keep it up.
The Clinton campaign vows to hang tough. On CNN, Clinton spokes-thingie Karen Finney was asked about Trump saying Hillary was an enabler. (The very fact that CNN played Trump’s allegation and asked Finney about it is huge.) As you can see, she vowed they will ignore it.
Let’s see how it works out for them.