[  ]
Restore the Wetlands. Reinforce the Levees.

Hillary’s Assassination Dream: ‘An X-ray of a Very Dark Soul’


‘You know, my husband did not wrap up the nomination in 1992 until he won the California primary somewhere in the middle of June, right? We all remember Bobby Kennedy was assassinated in June in California.’

—Hillary Clinton, Sioux Falls, S.D., 23 May 08

‘We have seen an X-ray of a very dark soul. One consumed by raw ambition to where the possible assassination of an opponent is something to ponder in a strategic way.’

Michael Goodwin, New York Daily News

Samantha Power was right.


Through this long primary campaign season we have not had much to say about Hillary Clinton, but after her RFK assassination remarks to the Sioux Falls, S.D., Argus Leader, we cannot stay silent. This is an outrage. It is sickening—especially as the 40th anniversary of Robert Kennedy’s assassination approaches—and to say this just days after the announcement of Senator Ted Kennedy’s brain tumor? There is no excuse for this kind of talk. This is not the first time she has invoked the spectre of assassination. Her meaning is not being misconstrued or ‘taken out of context’: It’s very plain: She is cold-bloodedly anticipating that ‘something might happen,’ and if it does, she’ll be around to pick up the nomination. MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann said it well in a hard-hitting, fulminating excoriation titled ‘Clinton, You Invoked a Political Nightmare’:

We cannot forgive you this, Senator, not because it is crass and low and unfeeling and brutal . . . The politics of this nation is steeped enough in blood, Senator Clinton, you cannot and must not invoke that imagery, anywhere, at any time. And to not appreciate immediately, to still not appreciate tonight just what you have done today is to reveal an incomprehension about the America you seek to lead. This, Senator, is too much. Because a senator, a politician, a person who can let hang in midair the prospect that she might just be sticking around in case the other guy gets shot, has no business being, and no capacity to be, the president of the United States.

Although the Obama campaign’s response was relatively mild (‘inappropriate . . . has no place in this campaign’), we expect to see demands from top Democratic party leaders and around the nation for Clinton to End It Already. We’ve heard quite enough from this candidate. For too long she has had a destructive, pernicious effect on the Democrats’ campaign for the White House, and she’s only getting worse. But, as we’ll see below, there may be more behind her remarks than strategic calculation.

Obama himself has shrugged off the remark, attributing it to campaign fatigue. But Time’s Karen Tumulty reveals that Hillary made a similar argument to Time’s managing editor Richard Stengel in March:

We all remember the great tragedy of Bobby Kennedy being assassinated in June in L.A. My husband didn’t wrap up the nomination in 1992 until June. Having a primary contest go through June is nothing particularly unusual.

Why did Time not make more of a story of this statement when she said it? She has made similar remarks since then, though without using the word ‘assassination.’ It is clear what’s on her mind.

Robert F. Kennedy Jr., a Clinton supporter, is also aware she’s made these arguments before. He appeared not to be too bothered by her remarks. “I’ve heard her make that argument before. It sounds like she was invoking a familiar historical circumstance in support of her argument for continuing her campaign.” (We wonder what his uncle Ted, an Obama backer, thinks about all this.)

Logical Fallacy

In addition to the shockingly ghoulish spectacle of Hillary waiting like a vulture by the roadside, there is really no similarity between June 1992 or 1968 and 2008. She says that Bill Clinton had not secured the nomination until June 1992, and that is true in the technical sense that it was not until after the California primary that he had amassed enough delegates to lock the nomination, but what is different between then and now is that in 1992 it had been certain from about March that Clinton would be the nominee. She is deliberately blurring distinctions, as if it’s only a matter of time and the nomination could swing to her. It is mathematically impossible for her to surpass Obama in delegates—that is all that matters in winning the nomination—which was not true of Bill Clinton’s situation in 1992.

Is Hillary Spiteful after Obama Spurned Her VP Overture?

For a week or so, following big loss in North Carolina and her near-loss in Indiana, she seemed to quiet down and hold back from attacking Obama. Then in recent days came articles about Bill Clinton “musing” that HRC = VP. At about the same time, according to reports, Hillary spoke to Obama herself about the second spot.

From Your Right Hand Thief > Daily Kos > The Field we find reports, apparently corroborated by several independent witnesses, that Hillary told Obama she would like to be vice president. “Senator Obama politely but straightforwardly and irrevocably said ‘no.’ Obama is going to pick his own running mate based on his own criteria and vetting process.”

The Field and Daily Kos pieces were posted Thursday, May 22, before the RFK assassination remarks. But what they have in common is that HRC, if indeed spurned for the VP slot, may be spitefully trying to sabotage Obama’s chances against McCain. But she wouldn’t do that, would she?

Several hours after her assassination vision went public, Hillary spoke to reporters in the middle of a supermarket, of all places, and did not apologize but gave a statement:

. . . I regret that if my referencing that moment of trauma for our entire nation, and particularly for the Kennedy family was in any way offensive. I certainly had no intention of that, whatsoever.

Is regretting the same as apologizing? Regretting, but also mentioning that she now holds Robert F. Kennedy’s former Senate seat. (Is that a fact, or is she speaking figuratively?)

There were reports in Time and the New York Times in recent days that Bill Clinton was pushing hard for Hillary to win the vice presidential slot—the so-called Dream Ticket—for he believes she has earned it, and they both want back into the White House. With her latest offense, Hillary seems to have deliberately ended any chances of that cold day in hell ever dawning.


Everyone should read Jonathan Chait’s “Is the Right Right on the Clintons?”, originally published by the Los Angeles Times in January but relevant to the present incident. And see also “Helping Elect Other Democrats Has Never Been a Clinton Strong Suit” by Robert Creamer in Huffington Post.


We also call attention to a very interesting piece of analysis by Steve Kornacki in the New York Observer, “Clinton’s Fate Was Sealed by the Calendar.” The following passage (with our bolding for emphasis) is particularly interesting in light of the RFK assassination remarks and the mainstream news media’s rather light handling of it:

Clinton suffered grievous damage in February, but she was able to press on in large part because the media and party elites wouldn’t dare write her off. She had entered the campaign as the unbeatable front-runner and she was a Clinton—and Clintons were supposed to dig deep holes for themselves only to engineer remarkable escapes. So she was treated as a candidate who was suddenly facing long odds, but a movement to force her from the race never emerged. And when she won Ohio, she basically guaranteed her survival for the rest of the primary campaign.

Tags: , , , ,

Print This Post Print This Post

Leave a Reply