Saturday, February 23, 2008

Hillary Clinton's new tactics

Back in 2004, about ten days before the Presidential elections, John Kerry met with President Clinton. After that meeting, Senator Kerry came out swinging against President Bush, attacking him on the economy. Of course, that didn't work (though the Bin Laden video might have something to do with it).

Thursday's debate between Senators Clinton and Obama was fairly congenial, though there was the occasional skirmish. Many analysts later felt that it appeared Senator Clinton was beginning to realize this might be it - she was unlikely to win the nomination.

However, today that appears to not be the case. Senator Clinton has come out attacking Senator Obama for what she calls "misleading" fliers - she even said, "Shame on you, Barack Obama!" As some commentators have pointed out, never bet against a Clinton till the last dog dies...

One of Senator Clinton's contentions is that the Obama campaign's flier says the Clinton plan for universal health care will force people to buy insurance even if they can't afford it. Senator Clinton says this is not true. However, I thought her UHC plan had a mandate - something she has repeatedly asserted is required to make sure people don't game the system. She has also stated that to implement this mandate, it might be necessary to garnish people's wages if they don't buy health insurance. Well, that sounds to me as though everybody will have to buy insurance under Senator Clinton's proposal - even if they can't afford it!
(Otherwise they risk paying fines - and still not get health insurance, as is the case in Massachusetts currently.)

As for the NAFTA flier - here is the Newsday response. Newsday, when it first published a comparison between the positions of Senator Clinton and her then-primary rival, apparently said that is appeared Senator Clinton feels NAFTA is a boon. "Boon" was not Senator Clinton's direct quote, which is how the Obama campaign flier used it; rather, it was Newsday's characterization of her position. Newsday admits their report should have made that clear.
Senator Clinton now criticizes NAFTA, and says she opposed it when Clinton 42's administration passed it. Well, that may have been; but as one of the comments on the Ohio Daily Blog posting about the flier points out, if Senator Clinton uses her "experience as a First Lady" to bolster her resume, and take credit for that Clinton administration's accomplishments, should she not also be held accountable for any failings, real or perceived?

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