Twice-failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is not content to sit on the sidelines as the 2020 election gears up, instead dishing out harsh criticism against her former rival President Donald Trump and even accusing a Democrat now running for president of being a Russian asset.
The Associated Press (AP) published a feature on Clinton entitled “Democrats’ 2020 race has a new shadow: Hillary Clinton,” that points out she is different than others who have lost a presidential election:
Sitting senators like Democrat John Kerry and Republican John McCain returned quietly to Capitol Hill. Democrat Al Gore became a leading advocate for climate action. McCain’s running mate, Sarah Palin, has made perhaps the biggest recent splash as a conservative media sensation who helped stoke a base that ultimately embraced Trump.
A former aide to Clinton in 2016 went as far as to say many people think she deserves to be on the national stage.
“There are people who believe she won — or should have won,” Karen Finney said in the AP article.
Finney said Clinton “is in her own category” and a “global figure.”
But some people aren’t as thrilled with Clinton’s meddling in the 2020 election, including Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) who didn’t get the Democrat nomination in 2016 but hopes to this election cycle. Sanders shamed Clinton on her recent remarks about Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) being a Russian favorite.
Tulsi Gabbard has put her life on the line to defend this country. People can disagree on issues, but it is outrageous for anyone to suggest that Tulsi is a foreign asset.
— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) October 21, 2019
“Tulsi Gabbard has put her life on the line to defend this country,” Sanders tweeted on Monday. “People can disagree on issues, but it is outrageous for anyone to suggest that Tulsi is a foreign asset.”
“Gabbard retorted by calling Clinton “the queen of warmongers … and personification of the rot that has sickened the Democratic Party for so long,” AP reported.
Larry Cohen, who is a Sanders supporter, praised and then warned Clinton in the AP report.
Hillary “put a lifetime into the Democratic Party. She deserves to be heard,” said Cohen, who is also on the Democratic National Committee. “In this senior leader role she has … it’s her job to embrace the range of politics within the party and not polarize within it.”
Her scuffle with Gabbard and other recent headlines she’s driven demonstrate that the 71-year-old remains a political lightning rod, just as she’s been through much of the last three decades. The dynamics raise questions about how Clinton and her party can best leverage her strengths and navigate her weaknesses through next November.
Nick Merrill, a Clinton spokesman, defended his boss in the AP report.
“The short of it is that she’s on a book tour and is feeling unconstrained about speaking her mind,” Merrill said. “It’s easy to over-ascribe a strategy about every word she utters, but it’s as simple as that. She’s out there telling the truth.”
“Finney predicts Clinton ‘will be out on the trail in 2020,’ if not for the nominee, then for ‘any of the record number of women who will be running’ for other offices,” AP reported.
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