Nothing is ever Hillary Clinton's fault (especially last year's election loss)

Hillary Clinton continues to offer fresh excuses for her 2016 election loss. Wednesday Clinton spoke at the Code Conference in California. While she made a pro forma acceptance of responsibility she also made clear the loss wasn’t her fault. From Politico:


Clinton, interviewed onstage in California at a tech conference by Recode’s Kara Swisher and Walt Mossberg, made a point to say that she took responsibility for her campaign and “every choice” she made, as she has in other public appearances this year. “But,” she said, “that’s not why I lost.”

Clinton again argued that the letter former FBI Director James Comey sent to Congress about her private email server just more than a week before the election was what prompted her to lose critical ground at the end…

“I was the victim of a very broad assumption that I was going to win,” she said.

She was “the victim” of the assumption she would win? Could that have anything to do with the inevitability campaign she ran during the primaries? In addition to her now routine complaints about Comey, Russia, and misogyny, Clinton also faulted the DNC for her loss. From the Hill:

“So I’m now the nominee of the Democratic Party. I inherit nothing from the Democratic Party,” she said during a question and answer session at Code Conference in Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif.

“I mean, it was bankrupt. It was on the verge of insolvency. Its data was mediocre to poor, nonexistent, wrong,” she recalled. “I had to inject money into it.”

That’s quite a dismissive attitude after multiple leaders in the party were fired for taking her side over Bernie Sanders. But surely Clinton sees herself as responsible for some of the decisions that led to her loss, right? What about her decision not to campaign in Wisconsin? Hillary was asked about that today (starts at 1:04:50 into this clip):


“You know you make these scheduling decisions based on the best information that you have and it turned out our information was not as reliable as I’d wished it had been,” Clinton said. Clinton then had one more thing to add about her Wisconsin loss. “The AP did a really well-researched piece about voter suppression in Wisconsin,” Clinton said. She continued, “And they literally found people who showed up to vote and were turned away.” After recounting some incidents mentioned in the AP piece, Clinton said, “The best estimate is that 200,000 people in Wisconsin were either denied or chilled in their efforts to vote.”

Clinton is referring to this AP story published May 9th of this year. However, that story is not the source of her claim about 200,000 people being “denied or chilled.” That claim came from a report by Priorities USA Action, a political action committee that supported Clinton. When Sen. Tammy Baldwin made an almost identical claim to the one Clinton made today, Politifact rated the claim “Mostly False.” Here is their conclusion:

Baldwin says: “Voter turnout in 2016 was reduced by approx. 200,000 votes because of WI’s photo ID laws.”

A report she cites from a Democratic candidate-supporting group says a decline in voter turnout between the 2012 and 2016 presidential elections in Wisconsin was entirely due to the state’s new photo identification requirement for voting.

But experts say that while photo ID requirements reduces turnout to some extent, they question the methodology of the report and say there is no way to put a number on how many people in Wisconsin didn’t vote because of the ID requirement.


So there you have it. Hillary blames James Comey, Russia, misogyny, the Democratic Party, and the inevitability campaign her own staff promoted as reasons for her loss. And when questioned about a more specific area of failure (Wisconsin) she blames poor information and voter ID laws, citing an already discredited claim from a friendly PAC. The lesson, I guess, is that nothing is ever Hillary’s fault.

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