NYT convinces itself Hillary is exciting and surprising while she remains same ol' Hillary

Keep telling yourselves this, guys:

Did you hear the one about the presidential candidate who walks into a Chipotle restaurant in Ohio? She orders a burrito bowl and makes headlines worldwide.

If you did not get the joke, you might not be a student of Hillary Rodham Clinton, perhaps one of the most overly cautious and controlled politicians of the modern era.

The punch line: After 25 years in the public eye, Mrs. Clinton has suddenly developed the capacity to surprise.

Cable television has not been able to get enough of Mrs. Clinton this week, treating her pit stops and political events in the Midwest like breaking news that requires hours of after-action analysis. Everyday-American Hillary has felt like a cultural phenomenon at times — not so much as hope-and-change Barack Obama became in 2007 and 2008, but far more than she ever was during their fight for the Democratic nomination.

Look, the Hillary campaign will be a lot of things. It will likely have competent and ruthless staffers. It will have inherited some of Obama’s data and digital gurus. It may very well carry her to the presidency of the United States. What it won’t be is fascinating. Any pretensions that it is, thus far, betray a problem with media not a change in Hillary.

Same ol’ Hillary.

Same ol’ Hillary, using the Obama public-financing line to justify accepting PAC and lobbyist donations in her $2 billion war chest:

WASHINGTON — Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign will accept donations from lobbyists and political action committees, a difference in policy from the man she’s hoping to replace, President Barack Obama.

The Clinton campaign confirmed that there would be no prohibition on such donations, after The Huffington Post was tipped off by two lobbyists supportive of the former secretary of state’s run for the White House.

“Hillary Clinton has a long history of taking on tough fights against special interests, whether or not they’re donors to her campaigns,” said Jesse Ferguson, a spokesman for the campaign. “She strongly supports campaign finance reform and has voted for tough lobbying reform, but as long as Republican groups and candidates are going to spend millions attacking Hillary, we need the resources to fight back.”

Same ol’ cautious Hillary:

WASHINGTON — Hillary Clinton is not taking a position just yet on Social Security expansion, an issue with growing support in the Democratic Party that several of her prospective presidential primary rivals have endorsed.

The Clinton campaign told TPM on Thursday, in response to a query, that the Democratic frontrunner “will have a lot to say” about the issue and emphasized her opposition to privatizing Social Security.

“Hillary has spent a lot of time these last several months looking at bold solutions for our toughest challenges and she’s now asking questions and sharing ideas directly with voters. As the campaign ramps up, she will have a lot to say about strengthening retirement security,” Jesse Ferguson, a spokesman for Clinton’s newly minted campaign, said in an emailed statement. “Hillary has a record of fighting against privatizing Social Security and opposing cuts to seniors benefits and, as she said yesterday, dealing with challenges facing older Americans is a top priority for her.”

She’ll have a lot to say at some point, but these things don’t focus group themselves.