Via PJTV, I know you think you’ve heard this joke before — and you have, repeatedly, even though we’re still 18 months out from the election — but there are good reasons to watch. For starters, stick with it long enough and you’ll find a kid who’s writing his thesis about Hillary naming Benghazi as one of her major achievements. No foolin’. The bar for these man-on-the-street interviews is low but somehow this guy managed to sneak underneath.
The real reason to watch, though, is that Michelle Fields wisely took care to ask these people first how enthusiastic they are about her. Answer, in most cases: Very, despite the fact that they go blank when asked to name something impressive she did as Secretary of State (plus the fact that some of them couldn’t have been more than five years old when she was first elected to the Senate). They’re enthusiastic not because of what she’s done but because of who she is, the would-be first woman president. And that’s what makes her formidable — realistically, you’re not going to reason someone out of supporting a candidate for who she is. The Hopenchange phenomenon of 2008 is proof enough of that. What makes Hillary’s achievement in identity politics potentially even greater than Obama’s is that she’s supposed to be running as the experienced candidate, not the fresh-faced naif whose record is necessarily thin because he’s come from outside the Beltway to shake things up. She’s the ultimate “brand” politician posing as someone who’s running on a long string of achievements. I don’t know how you attack that given that most of the ugliest stuff about the Clintons has been public knowledge for decades and is already priced into that brand. Maybe younger voters will think twice when the scandals of the 90s are endlessly rehashed, but I wouldn’t bet on it. Just listen to them here. With Hillary on the ballot, some segment of the population is going to treat the election as a de facto referendum on whether “it’s time” for a woman president. They won’t be dissuaded by ads or Benghazi or Monica Lewinsky or anything else. The only real mystery for election 2016 is whether there’s enough of them among independents, in addition to stalwart party-line Democrats, to give Hillary an insurmountable majority.