Good Morning All. I hope that recollections of 9/11 are not making you too blue today.
Not having the constitution to endure Sunday morning TV shows, I rooted around the internet a bit to get a flavor for the fallout from Clinton’s remarks about “the basket of deplorables”.
On Twitter #BasketOfDeplorables doesn’t show as trending for me anymore (how do those algorithms work anyway?) but, considering I’ve seen over 2,500 new tweets using that hashtag this morning, I think it’s safe to say that it should be.
If Campaign 2016 needed some shorthand to capture the way many Americans see the competition between the two major-party candidates, Hillary Clinton may have unintentionally supplied it this weekend. For much of the electorate, this could be remembered as a deplorable election.
Candidates are often stamped by seemingly offhand statements. Mitt Romney never escaped his “47 percent” comment in 2012, and President Obama found the same when he said many culturally conservative voters “cling” to their guns and religion. Donald Trump has a laundry list of them. After Friday, Clinton now has hers to regret.
Dan Balz (at the Washington Post, one of those ‘elite print-news sources’ that people like the ‘informed’ Jonathan Chait think we should all be reading if we truly desire to be informed) goes on to say:
The word “deplorable” no doubt captures how many Americans see the overall competition between Clinton and Trump. Last week’s 50-state survey by The Washington Post and SurveyMonkey underscored the concerns that voters have about both major-party candidates. Nationally, 55 percent of registered voters say Clinton would threaten the country’s well-being, while 61 percent say Trump would threaten the country’s well-being. Overall, 95 percent say either Trump or Clinton — or both — would do so.
Some of the ‘smart’, ‘informed’, people are downplaying Clinton’s comments. From Dan Politi at Slate:
Why It’s Ridiculous to Call Clinton’s “Basket of Deplorables” Her “47 Percent” Moment
Romney talked down to and dismissed the importance of poor people, while Clinton talked down to and dismissed racists, xenophobes, and homophobes. A slight difference. Plus, Romney was talking about people who may have actually chosen to support him, whereas Clinton was referring to people who in no way would vote for her. So the risk of alienation really isn’t that great to begin with, although of course it could make the most fervent Trump supporters more fervent.
(Even a piece downplaying blowback from her comments had to admit that “of course it could make the most fervent Trump supporters more fervent”, which probably means that they’ll be more motivated to show up at the polls.)
But I agree with Dan:
This was a self-inflicted wound. Her supporters might cheer her, and those at the fundraiser laughed as she made her comment. Ultimately it might have little effect on the polls. But it is a damaging moment that Republicans will use to sow even more distrust about her candidacy.
her comments Friday have provided her opponents with fresh ammunition to distrust her desire to work across party lines and could cause them to resist those overtures in the future. If she becomes president, she has made the job of governing all the more difficult.
Over at NPR (is NPR on your acceptable news sources list Mr. Chait?):
Hillary Clinton’s ‘Basket Of Deplorables,’ In Full Context Of This Ugly Campaign
Memo to candidates: Stop generalizing and psychoanalyzing your opponents’ supporters. It never works out well for you.
Clinton’s remarks, like Obama’s in 2008, smacked of liberal elitism — liberals talking to liberals about a group of people they don’t really know or hang out with, but feel free to opine about when talking to each other.
It’s always problematic to speak in generalizations, something liberals would be the first ones to point out. At the point in which you hear yourself saying that you might begin talking in “grossly generalistic terms,” it’s probably best to re-think what’s coming next. That’s especially true when you don’t have data to back up your point.