Despite their pleas not to engage in “class warfare”, Republicans have no qualms attacking Hillary Clinton for her wealth.
A typical talking point that Republicans roll out whenever Democrats call for higher taxes on the rich or criticize big banks for blowing up the world economy is that these sorts of lines political argument are more than just wrong. Instead they are in fact a dangerous ploy to split up American society, or as Republicans like to put it a form of “class warfare.”
I’ve always found these attacks to be pretty silly. After all history is filled with actual movements that really did want to get rid of the rich and the Democratic Party is hardly one of them. Asking the wealthy to pay a little more taxes to fund things like education and healthcare at a time of soaring income inequality hardly is similar to the Chinese Cultural Revolution.
But I guess the GOP is getting on the Moaist bandwagon or something because according to Politico the current plan is to “Mitt Romnify” Hillary Clinton in the lead up to the 2016 election:
While Hillary Clinton’s residences in New York and Washington may not have car elevators, there’s still a lengthy trail of paid speeches, tone-deaf statements about the family finances, and questions about Clinton family foundation fundraising practices that will serve as cornerstones of the anti-Clinton messaging effort.
“She’s admitted she hasn’t driven a car for decades; she probably doesn’t ever go into a coffee shop and talk to regular people unless it’s for a staged photo-op,” said American Crossroads CEO Steven Law, alluding to Clinton’s portrayal in her campaign’s launch video on Sunday. “She really has lived the life of a 1-percenter these last several years, and it shows.
“We know her team is working to rebrand her as a relatable, regular person; the question is, can she actually perform in a way that convinces people she is that person? We think that’s going to be hard for her.”…
…”The most potent message against Clinton is that she doesn’t live an average life, she’s out of touch and doesn’t play by the same set of rules,” said the RNC’s research director, Raj Shah. “[T]hat resonates more deeply than some of the policy hits, the ethical hits.”
Got that? It’s only class warfare when the other side does it. When we attack the rich for being out of touch with ordinary people, well that’s just fine.
Whatever you think about this line of attack though it seems unlikely to work. Hillary Clinton has been in the center of the political spotlight for 25 years now and so most people have their mind made up about her, for better or for worse. Trying to attack on this line is unlikely to convince anyone of anything, Democrats will see Republican hypocrisy and Republicans will of course see an out of touch fat cat, even though it was so unfair when Mitt Romney was branded as that back in 2012.
Which means the election will hinge on the fundamentals of the economy and whether or not we get into another disastrous war over the next 18 months. Peace and prosperity will make Hillary the favorite. Anything else means we’ll probably see a change in leadership.
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