On Sunday’s Meet The Press, former White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said Hillary Clinton’s early-stage presidential campaign would do well to distance itself from the presidencies of Barack Obama, and of her husband Bill.
Gibbs was responding to Meet The Press anchor David Gregory’s question on how Hillary should position herself “vis-à-vis” Obama, noting that his legacy could help and hurt her:
Well, she also has to distinguish herself from her husband, too, right? Listen, if her campaign becomes an extension really of either her husband’s term or the current President’s term, it’s not necessarily a good deal for her. I completely agree with Chuck [Todd]. I as a strategist am fairly floored that she has decided to enter the public fray so quickly. She could do the foundation work, she could do issue work, she could build the campaign, she could develop a message without having to be so far out front there. And Chuck talks about strong bipartisan approval ratings, those will whittle quite quickly as she steps further and further into the political world.
Clinton surprised observers last week when she publicly spoke out against the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down a key section of the Voting Rights Act, and the proliferation of voter ID laws sweeping the country. Democrats, for the most part, view these laws as attempts by Republicans to suppress the minority vote, and as a way of playing the race card.
That, despite the fact that in Georgia, Indiana and Tennessee, which have some of the strictest voter ID laws in the country, black voter turnout exceeded that of non-Hispanic whites in 2012, according to the census.
The biggest threat to Clinton’s candidacy might turn out to be the Benghazi scandal. In regard to the talking points about whether the anti-Islam YouTube video had anything to do with the attack on the diplomatic mission in Benghazi, and when the administration learned for sure that it was a pre-planned terrorist attack, “What did she know and when did she know it?” In addition, her answer at a Senate hearing, when she said “What difference does it make?” regarding how the four Americans died, is a ready-made campaign ad for her opponent. Once the truth finally comes out about her role, it could cause even her biggest media cheerleader, Chris Matthews, to abandon ship.