The rumors surrounding former First Daughter Chelsea Clinton and what the future holds for her never seem to die. Given her surname that’s more than understandable, but the political press has been chewing on this bone for long enough now that I’m beginning to wonder if the story is more than simply a way for reporters to occupy themselves between the issuance of Trump’s executive orders. Politico ran a lengthy piece this weekend which seeks to read the tea leaves and come to grips with what they describe as Chelsea Clinton’s “social media personality transplant.” Is she sending us some signals that a major move in the political world is on the horizon?
Chelsea Clinton has discovered something new since Inauguration Day: a spicy, sarcastic online personality…
Hillary Clinton’s devastating defeat, coupled with the rise of President Donald Trump, has coaxed out a new Chelsea: provocative, punchier, and, for virtually the first time in her life, someone angling for attention in the political fray…
Like the rest of the characters in her mother’s orbit, Chelsea Clinton is in a moment of transition, trying to figure out whether she’ll pursue her own political career — a move she hasn’t ruled out — or find a path outside the family business. “Lots of people are riled up and dialing it up,” said longtime Hillary Clinton confidant Philippe Reines. “Not as loyalists, but as citizens. I’m guessing that’s a big part of the motivation behind what she’s saying and how she’s saying it. She just also happens to be a Clinton.”
All denials aside, it certainly sounds as if the younger Clinton is at least keeping her options open. And why wouldn’t she? She comes from a place which probably defines the concept of “entitlement” better than any poster at a social justice warrior rally. Sadly, that would likely be one of the worst ideas on record. Maureen Callahan at the New York Post sums up this general feeling of dread in surprisingly few words.
Putting aside America’s exhaustion with dynastic politics, Chelsea herself, as a potential candidate, comes loaded with Clintonian baggage: the greed, the entitlement, and her mother’s greatest flaw — an inability to connect with common people.
Chelsea, like her mother, seems unruffled to the point of robotic function. Her new Twitter presence, electrifying compared to the Chelsea we’ve known since childhood, is really quite safe: What Democrat can’t get behind the social issues she’s promoting? It’s not like she’s tweeting about the two wars we’re still fighting or the Iran deal or TPP or whether the Fed should raise interest rates.
Let’s keep in mind that Chelsea Clinton no doubt had big plans for herself once her mother was elected president. (Funny how things work out, eh?) Part of her apparent search for a higher profile could, as Callahan points out, be related to the fact that she has a new book coming out on the subject of managing global healthcare concerns. That ties in to the “big plans” that I referenced. There were repeated rumors that she was going to wind up with a place in her mother’s administration doing something in the field of healthcare.
Of course those weren’t the only rumors. We saw talk of Chelsea assuming the role of First Lady in a Hillary Clinton administration if Bill was otherwise occupied and uninterested in a spot in the East Wing. Then, of course, there were the persistent reports that she was first going to run for a congressional seat, later morphing into a claim that a New York Senate bid was already in the works. Her spokesperson recently squashed the Senate rumor but that doesn’t mean that any such plans are permanently off the table.
I would just point out that, even more so than Maureen Callahan, I remain of the opinion that Chelsea Clinton has little or nothing to offer and really has no business feeling entitled to some position in high office or any other level of participation beyond the free speech and opinions granted to every citizen. It was more than a year ago, as she really ramped up her public appearances and placed herself on the playing field as part of her mother’s campaign, when I wrote at length about how she truly is a woman of very few accomplishments who has led a gifted life. Virtually everything which is happened, from her acceptance to elite educational institutions to the dubious “jobs” which she has managed to land, came to her by virtue of the respect, influence or fear which her parents engendered in others. Much like her mother, as Hillary attempted to build a credible resume for the Oval Office, Chelsea Clinton has virtually no accomplishments to point to.
The ongoing national conversation about political dynasties and American royalty had, I thought, been at least somewhat answered during the 2016 election. Perhaps Chelsea Clinton should take something of a message from that herself and realize that her last name will not always translate to a free set of keys to the kingdom whenever she snaps her fingers.