Presidential Campaign

Clinton, cadre of Dem enablers can’t play victim in FBI probe

Clinton Huma
Clinton Huma

Hillary Clinton is not the victim. End of story.

Yet for the Democrats, the idea of Hillary’s victimhood reveals itself to be the go-to response for both the WikiLeaks scandal and the latest bombshell announcement from FBI director James Comey.

The strategy is fairly straightforward: 1. Ignore the substance; 2. Attack the messenger; 3. Paint the candidate as the victim.

{mosads}We have seen this play out over the last few months as the seemingly endless drip of WikiLeaks emails calls into question the ethics and potential criminality of the Clinton campaign.

At every opportunity, the candidate and her surrogates pivoted when confronted with the content of the emails, and instead made a play to depict their fundamentally flawed candidate as the victim of a James Bond-meets-Joe McCarthy Russian conspiracy.  

Rather than try to make the public actually believe Clinton is an honest public servant, the campaign decided it would be easier to sell the notion that there’s a KGB spy lurking in every dark D.C. alley.    

The facts are becoming clearer as to why Director Comey chose to go public, and sunlight is gradually illuminating the internal disagreement within his agency on whether to recommend an indictment of Clinton.  

The campaign’s misguided method of damage control cannot weather this storm.  

Ignoring the substance and attacking the messenger will simply keep the story in the headlines for the next eight days. The director himself, as well as the agency’s never-ending cadre of “unnamed sources,” will be forced to let out tidbits of information that will seek to overcome concerns over whether the fourth-quarter transparency was necessary.  

Persuading voters that the FBI is the true villain and is persecuting Clinton, is also not a winning bet.  

The modern world tends to lionize victims; and many rightfully so. However, the narrative that a presidential candidate has been haplessly maltreated by law enforcement presents an image that a traditional campaign would avoid.


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If we gave any voter the task of listing one-hundred words which describe our greatest presidents, “victim” would not be on it.

Yet, assuming the Democrats prefer their candidate be viewed with sympathetic eyes, rather than those of condemnation, they must first shift the blame to someone else. But unfortunately, the shameful list of responsibility begins and ends with them.

Even if one ignored all the Clinton scandals of the past, the news of her private email server broke last year and gave the party more than enough time to vet the situation and find a suitable replacement, perhaps even by simply letting the primary voters choose. Instead, as we now know, the DNC doubled down on their commitment and tried to tip the scales in her favor. They now reap what they’ve sowed.

Unsurprisingly, Huma Abedin is largely to blame for Clinton’s current plight.  Whether intentional or unintentional, ordered by Hillary or not, allegedly withholding evidence and not fully cooperating is inexcusable. Whatever the fallout that is happening now, it could have happened months ago at a more politically advantageous time.

Her husband also shares responsibility, even if for no other reason than the mere fact that they almost got away with it, but for his well-publicized electronic liaisons. 

Attorney General Loretta Lynch is another person to blame. No one else could possibly cause more public suspicion and media scrutiny than an investigator who meets in secret with the husband of the subject of her investigation.

Her decision to refrain from prosecuting back in July, and her effort to suppress the director’s recent letter because it could affect the outcome of the election, are now bona fide talking points for the GOP as a result.

But if Hillary Clinton is desperate to assign fault, more so than anyone else, she must look no further than her own mirror.

There may not have ever been a candidate in modern history to enjoy dancing on the fine line of misconduct more than Hillary Clinton.

The reason why this turn of events is a major story in the waning days of the campaign is only because she has lied at every single stage of this investigation. She had ample opportunity to come forward, tell the truth, cooperate, and potentially put it to bed. That was no longer possible the moment she falsely told the public that she handed over all her emails. 

This controversy is almost entirely of her own making. It seems to have gone against even the better judgment of her advisors, and the I.T. staff went as far as calling it the “Hillary cover-up operation.”  The die is cast.

If Hillary Clinton truly believes she’s the victim, then the villain is not the FBI, a global conspiracy, or the Republicans. She and her inner circle suffer only from their own feeble relationship with the facts.  

Borelli is a New York City council member, Republican commentator, and professor. You can follow him on Twitter @JoeBorelliNYC.

The views expressed by contributors are their own and not the views of The Hill.

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