It has been 44 days since Donald Trump’s surprising upset over Hillary Clinton. This week, the Electoral College made it official – Donald J. Trump will be the 45th president of the United States. But while the election is over, it seems the battle of words between Trump and former President Bill Clinton is just heating up. But you won’t believe the explanation Clinton is giving to explain the way Trump won the presidency.
The editor of the Bedford-Pound Ridge Record Review caught an impromptu Q & A with Bill Clinton at a New York bookstore and published the details in the paper’s print edition. The editorial did not appear online, but the contents have been reported by Politico.
Clinton said of Trump, “He doesn’t know much.” But it is what he said next that is saddening and beneath the dignity of a former President.
Clinton continued, “One thing Trump does know is how to get angry white men to vote for him.”
There’s more. Clinton blamed FBI Director James Comey for Hillary’s loss. “James Comey cost her the election,” he said. Then he said he believed the allegations that Russia was responsible for a series of pre-election hacks that revealed embarrassing – and politically damaging – acts by some prominent Democrats associated with Hillary Clinton’s campaign.
As he cast his electoral vote for Hillary in Albany, New York, he said more. According to CBS News, he said she battled “through that bogus email deal” and “prevailed,” but “at the end we had the Russians and the FBI deal and she couldn’t prevail against them.”
Where is Bill Clinton wrong?
1. Neither James Comey nor the Russians made Hillary set up an insecure server in the basement.
2. Neither James Comey nor the Russians told Hillary to not make a single campaign trip to Wisconsin.
3. Neither James Comey nor the Russians told Hillary to make one-third as many campaign trips as Donald Trump.
It is understandable that Bill Clinton would be upset, even angry, over Hillary’s loss. What is sad is the depth to which he has fallen in his irrational, unprovoked statements of condemnation. What is sadder is his characterization of Trump supporters as “angry white men.”
Can you imagine the uproar that would have been created had John McCain or Mitt Romney blamed their losses to President Obama on “angry black men”?
Trump won the election because people wanted change. He connected with blue collar workers. And, despite what the media continues to perpetuate, Trump won the popular vote by two million, among the 49 states not named California.
In America, we have a history of former presidents showing class and patriotism in the face of defeat. We have a history of former presidents responding with class when their party loses the White House.
Exhibit A – Jimmy Carter
Exhibit B – George H. W. Bush
Exhibit C – George W. Bush
Bill Clinton gets high reviews for his presidency among most historians. That makes this an especially sad day. By his harsh criticisms of the President-elect and the 30 million white men who voted for him, Clinton is harming the process, creating division, and embarrassing his party.
But mostly, he is diminishing his own legacy.