What to Make of Hillary's ‘What Happened’ Book Tour
Matthew JAMISON | 20.09.2017 | OPINION

What to Make of Hillary's ‘What Happened’ Book Tour

The American Democratic Party Presidential nominee for the 2016 US Presidential Election Hillary Clinton has given her insider account and perspective on the historic 2016 American Presidential Election and her loss as the Democrats candidate against the Republican Party candidate of Donald Trump. Mrs. Clinton was the first and only American woman nominated by a major American political party to stand and run for President of the United States. She managed to win the popular vote with 3 million extra votes cast than her Republican Party rival but the Democrat Party nominee lost in the Electoral college, significantly, old school white working-middle class, non-university educated suburban, Reagan Democrat states such as Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio while failing to hold the Obama coalition 08/12 victory North Carolina.

The Obama coalition was well and truly just that the Obama coalition and would only turn out and support their man Barack Obama as had proven to be the case in US mid term Congressional elections under President Obama's leadership. The Obama/Axelrod coalition proved to be non-transferable to other Democrats and the wider Democratic Party. `The Democrats at a political institutional level in State Legislatures and on Capitol Hill have withered during the last 8 years of Barack Obama's leadership of his party. In terms of the Democrat Party infrastructure it is not on a par with the Republicans as of yet and became more a personality cult of Organizing for America rather than the Democratic National Committee. Components of it were but not all of it en mass. Mrs. Clinton and her extremely wealthy super donor shadow President backer George Soros did not expect to lose against the circus of Donald Trump. They were both deeply shocked and angered at losing the White House and the American Executive branch of Government to Donald Trump and his Tea Party hard-line conservative Republican Party followers in the GOP. Mr. Soros in particular feels most aggrieved, as aggrieved as Mrs. Clinton ,due to his big plans and his wasted 8 years getting short shrift from the Obama administration, 

During the 2016 election Hillary Clinton was successfully outmaneuvered electorally and politically by Donald Trump through his successful appeal to the radicalized extreme Reagan Democrats while simultaneously occupying the phantom zone of what is 21century Anglo-American Big Brother/Apprentice trash TV, a highly politicised news media that feeds off this so-called reality and the extreme right wing along with pocketing the traditional moderate conservative centre right Establishment after his nomination. Once Mr. Trump was the nominee - unlike speculation at the time - the Republican Party did not divide, fell full throttle into line and made no attempt at a pre-Convention rebellion and summer or autumn coup. Republicans simply supported Trump both at an Establishment, Institutional and rank & file level. Many Obama voters who voted for the Democrats and Obama for President in 2008 and 2012 went over and defected voting for Donald Trump and the Trump-Pence Republican ticket over Hillary Clinton and the Democrats in 2016. Many young Obama liberal voters did not show up at the polls to vote for Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party post-Obama-Sanders as Clinton had done in 2008 and the Republican Party did with Donald Trump. 

The US Presidential election is a watershed moment in American and World history. A watershed in many ways, and what it and Mrs. Clinton's "What Happened" tell us, about the goings on both politically and culturally and the upheaval in the world's most powerful Superpower. Firstly, the American Democratic Party has become hollowed out under the 8 year leadership of President Obama and became too heavily associated as the party of limousine liberal wealthy Coast types such as San Francisco Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi. The gamble that Democratic Party leaders and Democratic primary voters took in 2008 was that Barack Obama would be a transforming figure. The problem for the Democratic Party in 2016 is Barack Obama proved too transformative and transformed himself above and beyond the Democratic Party. His coalition did not transfer easily in the 2016 Presidential election just like in the mi-term Congressional elections of 2010 and 2014. 

While the unique and exotic celebrity and charisma of President Obama may have been able to mask the tremendous suffering and damage there is in Middle America 8 years after the Great Global Financial Recession and while the country has been moving in a more socially liberal direction under President Obama and his followers there has been a strong and extreme concurrent backlash on the American Right and without a charismatic messianic figure leading the party like Obama it was not possible to vanquish it. It started off in 2009-2010 as the classic small-government anti-tax American conservative movement known as the Tea Party and then became even more radical by the arrival of Donald Trump for President in 2015-16. One of the consequences of the 2016 US Presidential election is that with the successful election of Donald Trump and the Republican campaign he ran the Democratic Party may have to move further to the right to win in the Electoral College for 2020 and make a direct and concerted appeal once again to the disaffected right wing Reagan Democrats, the white conservatives, which they did not do in 2016. 

Secondly, the Republican Party, at once extreme on the right wing of Western Anglo-American conservative politics for the last two decades now, has become even more extreme to the point where it has tipped over into something more sinister than traditional American conservatism or evangelical right wing Christian fundamentalism. Donald Trump himself is not a Nazi but he has unleashed a force in his most passionate and ardent supporters which was deeply disturbing to behold and far more important for the US internally and the world externally than any international electoral espionage. The people who voted for Donald Trump are angry at the way their country has been governed and angry at the rise of other great powers. The con-artist that Donald Trump is will never be able to satisfy their hopes and desires for a better America for themselves and their communities. In all likelihood Trump’s followers will become even more embittered, disillusioned, angry and hence more radicalized and extreme as the years wear on. 

Thirdly there was a rancour and bitterness to the American Presidential Election campaign of 2016 unlike any in recent living memory perhaps apart from the bitterness generated by Richard Nixon's contest against John Kennedy. The strong forces of sexism. misogyny, anti-Semitism, xenophobia and fascist intolerance came to define the American political and electoral landscape of 2016. This American Presidential election campaign shocked and concerned The West & the world. This intense negativity was in part fuelled at a personal level from the life time ambition and personal quest of Hillary Clinton for the office of American President and with it the historical achievement of the role of the first woman President, fulfilling as she saw it, her destiny. In alliance with Mrs. Clinton and her Democratic Party was the enigmatic liberal super-donor billionaire George Soros who lavished millions upon millions of dollars from his private fortune on Mrs. Clinton's campaign and Democrats running against Donald Trump and the Republicans. The personal loathing between George Soros and Trump was visceral as was Mrs. Clinton's hunger for the White House and the return of her husband to the Oval Office and with it burning contempt for anyone who stood in the Clintons way. Thus to be up ended by a political novice and clown as vulgar and amateurish as Donald Trump was hugely shocking, embarrassing and humiliating. Given the stakes and the amount of American power there is involved at this time in history it was a traumatic loss of epic proportions. 

This clearly shows through in Hillary Clinton's recent media interviews regarding her memoir of the election. Mrs. Clinton is obviously badly hurt but also furious and angry that she had what she thought was her prize stolen from her. Along with Mr. Soros this election is far from over for Hillary Clinton. From the interviews she has given she is clearly not ruling out the possibility of a third 2020 Presidential run. Hillary Clinton lives and breathes politics. To have been beaten in the manner she was by Donald Trump of all Republicans will surely need some healing. The only way she may heal is setting the stage for a come back of 2020.

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