By ZIAD BUCHH, Opinions Editor
Nine months separated from one of the most humiliating defeats in modern political history, Hillary Clinton has returned to the public spotlight to let everyone know who exactly is to blame.
In her new book “What Happened”, Hillary takes swipes at a laundry list of people and entities that she believes cost her the 2016 election. This includes her opponent in the Democratic primaries, Sen. Bernie Sanders, who she claims “isn’t a democrat,” Barack Obama for not doing more, Russia for feeding voters with misinformation, the media for their lopsided coverage, and James Comey, who “shivved” her by reopening the infamous email investigation 11 days before the national election.
To be fair, Clinton also blamed herself, making it clear that she was the candidate and it’s her fault. But her words feel like empty lip service that mask a misunderstanding of what happened in the 2016 election.
All of the people and entities mentioned by Clinton did have a hand in the election of Donald Trump. However, Hillary Clinton didn’t lose only because of them. She also didn’t lose because she’s a woman, or because all Trump voters are racist, xenophobic, and sexist.
Hillary Clinton lost because she stood on a platform that offered no real change. Her campaign was built on slinging around slogans like “I’m With Her,” a cheap ploy to attract the vote of people who just wanted to see a female president, and “Love Trumps Hate.” In a country in which, according to a Priorities USA Action poll, 50 percent of Obama and Trump voters believe that their incomes are falling behind the cost of living, and 31 percent believe their income is only keeping pace, campaigning on the platform of not being Trump isn’t good enough.
Clinton was also completely unable to connect with the everyday American. Her lack of transparency regarding her Wall Street speeches, which she still insists are not a big deal, and transcripts of her telling banking executives that she holds “both a public and a private” position, built an image of her as a candidate who had Wall Street’s benefit in mind. She may blame Sen. Sanders for her lack of credibility with the public, but stories like those and the reports of her colluding with the Democratic National Committee don’t help her case.
There’s also the curious case of “Where’s Waldo” when it came to her campaign’s presence in the battleground states of Michigan and Wisconsin. Clinton refused to accept on-the-ground intelligence that Michigan could go for Trump and direct more resources there, and completely ignored the state of Wisconsin while campaigning. Both states ended up voting Republican, which handed the election to Trump.
The worst part about the book isn’t its content, but its timing. What Happened releases while Democrats are gearing up for the 2018 midterm elections. It doesn’t help that Clinton’s approval rating is the lowest it’s ever been at 30 percent, according to a NBC poll. Opening up old wounds and settling old scores doesn’t do much in the way of uniting a party that can’t afford another embarrassing election cycle.