The unfair treatment of Hillary Clinton, brought about simply because the poor woman wants to be President, simply has to stop. All of these pestering questions, one after another, are obviously signs of hatred from people who are jealous of her many accomplishments. Or at least that’s the current line of defense being taken by the Ready for Hillary camp these days. But what were those accomplishments again? As Legal Insurrection points out, that’s an unfair question which is only being brought up by the aforementioned haters.
Expecting a Commander in Chief to have some kind of accomplishments that show their qualifications before getting hired for the job is reasonable, right? Maybe, just not if those accomplishments happened while serving has the head of the State Department, according to U.S. News and World Report’s Susan Milligan.
On Hardball with Chris Matthews’ Milligan said the question posed to the Iowa Democratic panel was “unfair.”
“I think most people could not look at a Secretary of State and point to an accomplishment. Frankly, mostly what a Secretary of State does is keep something from becoming a massive crisis so, that in a way wasn’t a terribly fair question,” said Milligan.
Chris Matthews helpfully agreed with Ms. Milligan, noting that Barack Obama didn’t really have any serious accomplishments to point to when he was elected either. Point taken, sir.
There’s a video of the exchange available at the link and it’s pretty much what you’d expect. And for just a moment here I’ll play devil’s advocate and grant at least one portion of what Milligan was saying. It’s difficult to draw up a chart and point to the specific accomplishments of some cabinet members, with the State Department being a prime example. The job of the Secretary is designed to happen largely under the covers, and when they do make headlines it’s for arranging things which essentially lay the groundwork for the President to swoop in and finish the deal. The top diplomat can’t actually sign off on treaties or end wars… they can only grease the skids to make that happen.
But with that said, powerful Secretaries of State leave their fingerprints on the process and their accomplishments – or lack thereof – are readily identified by historians. No matter how awful the Iran deal is, if it winds up going through and being signed, it will at least be considered an accomplishment of John Kerry. Madeleine Albright was credited with being a key figure in arranging the smooth transition of Hong Kong in 1997 and hammered out the specifics of numerous trade deals. We could begin a discussion on the contributions of Henry Kissinger here, but the article would quickly balloon to the size of an encyclopedia.
Hillary Clinton finished a full term in the office and had nothing of substance to point to aside from boosting the previously sagging novelty RESET button manufacturing sector. (You’re welcome.) She burned enough jet fuel dashing around the world to balance the budget of Detroit, so it hardly seems “unfair” to ask her defenders to point to something… anything … that she has to show for it.