This isn’t how things were supposed to go for Hillary Clinton. When she launched her campaign last April, she was the overwhelming and prohibitive Democratic frontrunner, widely expected to coast to her party’s nomination.
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Instead, the past six months have been dominated by endless questions about her honesty and ethics, and have seen her poll numbers fall precipitously. Clinton’s candidacy is so weakened that the political world was on pins and needles all week, breathlessly waiting for Joe Biden to make up his mind about a potential run.
Ultimately, the Vice President decided to take a pass on the race, but the fact that a 72-year old career politician who wears the failed Obama Agenda as a badge of honor was seen as a credible challenger for the Democratic nomination speaks volumes about Hillary Clinton’s damaged position in this race.
Her erosion in the polls has been so significant that she now trails a proud and self-avowed socialist in multiple polls, including many surveys in my home state of New Hampshire. “Liar” and “dishonest” are the two words voters most frequently associate with Clinton, and many questions still remain about her use of a private email server while she was Secretary of State.
These issues of character are huge problem for Clinton. More than any other office, electing a president is a very personal choice for voters – they are choosing someone to not only make consequential decisions about war and peace as the Commander-in-Chief of our Armed Forces, but they are also choosing someone to come into our living rooms and be the comforter-in-chief during times of tragedy and disaster. Both responsibilities require a certain level of trust from the man or woman in the Oval Office.
Furthermore, as the tragedy of Benghazi comes back in the news with Clinton’s hearing today, voters are once again reminded of Clinton’s disastrous record at the State Department. She has never answered questions about the requests from our diplomats serving in Benghazi for more security in the lead-up to the attack as al-Qaeda stepped up its activity in the region. She also has not answered questions about why our embassy lacked proper resources, such as fire escape masks, which is extremely relevant given that two of the victims died of smoke inhalation.
Clinton was also a strong advocate for the Libyan War in the first place, convincing President Obama of the need for American intervention, despite having no plan to deal with the power vacuum once Gaddafi was overthrown. The ensuing instability created a ripe environment for terrorists, who were responsible for the attack on our embassy and killed four of our own.
By any measurable statistic or figure, America and the world are all worse off and less safe as a result of her time at serving in the Obama Administration. Her record as Secretary of State hasn’t even been fully explored yet, largely because the headlines have been dominated by questions about her emails and FBI investigations.
With Vice President Biden now officially out of the mix, Clinton’s path to the nomination becomes easier, but her fundamental problems evident now more than ever. Already, voters cannot trust her and do not believe she is ethical, and that’s before a thorough examination of her state department record has commenced.
There’s a reason Joe Biden took a long, hard look at this race, and that’s because he correctly recognized that Hillary Clinton is an eminently flawed and beatable candidate. As more and more voters tune into the presidential race over the next year, they too will reach the same conclusion, and that’s bad news for Hillary Clinton.