Hillary Clinton was supposed to stroll to the Democratic nomination, but she's allowed a 74-year-old socialist from Vermont to foil those plans, leaving many in her party exasperated with the former first lady.
That exasperation swelled during the Iowa caucuses, where Bernie Sanders scored a virtual tie with Clinton. With Sanders the favored candidate in New Hampshire, he could even knock Clinton from her position as front-runner as soon as this Tuesday.
Many critics have noted that Hillary Clinton's stumbles are largely self-made, and have been a long time in the making.
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Gathered below are seven things Hillary Clinton did to piss off Democrats, and fail her own campaign.
1. She's been involved in too many scandals
— From Troopergate to Monica Lewinsky to Benghazi to the latest flap over Clinton's private email server, many Democrats are quite simply exhausted by the Clintons and their laundry list of scandals.
2. She cozied up to Wall St.
— Clinton's 2016 campaign has been dogged with questions about the tens of millions of dollars she's received from big banks and other corporations. According to the New York Post
, a large swath of Democrats don't like the fact that she's "been kissy-kissy with the likes of Goldman [Sachs] chief Lloyd Blankfein," and have asked her to release the transcripts of the speeches she's given there. She's continually balked at the request, knowing full well it would only bolster Sanders' call for overthrowing the rich.
3. She continues to struggle with retail politics
— Since her 2008 campaign, several pundits have referred to Hillary Clinton as "Nixon in a pantsuit." In 2007, The Atlantic highlighted
a letter from a reader that compared the two: "They both have brilliant strategic minds, suffer from extreme paranoia about the enemy of their agenda, and both are extremely secretive. Nixon had very high negatives, and re-launched his "brand" image in the 1968 campaign, just as Hillary is doing in 2007. In short, Hillary is Nixon in a dress, or more appropriately Nixon in a pantsuit." Two election cycles later, not much has changed for Clinton in this regard.
4. She's chosen an uninspiring message
— "Sanders, 74, tapped into the electorate’s economic anxiety with a call for a 'political revolution' aimed at curbing the outsize influence of the 'billionaire class' and leveling the playing field for ordinary Americans," The Washington Post wrote
after the Iowa caucuses. "She has struggled to inspire the Democratic electorate and expand her rationale for running much beyond her own lengthy résumé."
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5. She's failed to reassemble the Obama coalition
— Barack Obama's path to victory in 2008 was unique because it relied heavily on a never-before-seen coalition of minority voters, single women, and young people. While it appears Clinton has maintained strong support from minority voters, she's shocked many with her inability to gain the favor of young people, as well as women. This is especially demoralizing to Democrats considering she could become the first female president.
6. She attacked Bernie
— According to the Los Angeles Times
, Clinton is so despised by some of Bernie Sanders' supporters that "If Bernie Sanders loses, his backers may not be there for Hillary Clinton in November." One of those supporters, a recent graduate of Franklin Pierce named Casey Beat, put it thus: "Hillary Clinton is a liar, and she is fake . . . She’s been degrading toward Bernie. I think she is a terrible person."
7. She's failed to put the email scandal behind her
— While many of Hillary and Bill Clinton's scandals have been forgotten in the sands of time, Hillary's use of a private server for official State Department business continues to erode her campaign and the voters' trust in it. As recently as Sunday, the editorial board of The Washington Post wrote
that "The voters need answers about the Clinton emails."
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