Friday, April 24, 2015

The other Clinton Fatigue

Back in the 1990s, after Whitewater, "travelgate", et cetera I would read about how the scandals (especially Whitewater) were too convoluted for many members of the public to really follow, but the public still had developed the sense that the Clintons must have done something wrong, because otherwise, why was everyone spending so much time talking about scandals. That hurt Bill Clinton's approval even though those scandals pretty much all turned out to be bullshit. At the time people were calling the phenomenon "Clinton Fatigue."

So now Hillary Clinton has declared her intention to run for President, we have had another few years of new bullshit Clinton scandals (e.g. Benghazi!TM) and we have some more scandals on the horizon. This new one about soliciting donations from foreign governments while Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State, I think, might actually raise a real scandal-worthy problem (it also might not, a lot of bullshit scandals looked real in the beginning, when we only have heard the side of the people pushing the scandal).

But even if it is real, I don't think it will stop Hillary Clinton from being elected President. After literally decades of bullshit Clinton scandals I think we have a new kind of Clinton Fatigue, a kind of fatigue that actually inoculates the Clintons from scandal-related harm. The new scandals all get the chattering class chattering, and the people who hated Clinton and would never vote for her now have another thing to add to their long list of reasons why Clinton is evil.

But I don't see anyone who would actually be inclined to vote for Clinton changing a vote over this. That's because in order to get to this point and still want to vote for her, you must have already heard about those other scandals and concluded they are all horseshit.Which means those people are predisposed to assume that any new allegation is also horseshit, dismissing them out of hand without considering the merits of the allegations. Considering Hillary Clinton's approval numbers and polls showing her whipping the ass of all the plausible Republican candidate, I think there are a lot of those people who will assume any new scandal is horseshit.

(this post is an expanded version of a discussion on FB)