Hillary Clinton’s challenge (not being influenced by donors)

To refresh, Hillary continues to repeat she has not been influenced in her vote due to any donor money. In a recent debate she self-righteously made the same challenge to Bernie, and I was really surprised he didn’t pounce, but he let her off the hook. If he had successfully accepted the challenge, seems like he could have fed into the already notion people have of Hillary, of not being trustworthy. Bernie should have followed up. Some examples taken from the back cover of Peter Schweizer’s book Clinton Cash may have sufficed:

Some of these involved both of the Clintons or just Bill, while others involve her alone. How come Bernie didn’t pounce when Hillary challenged him? Of course, it’s still difficult to prove her vote wasn’t influenced with donor money, but these examples are some of the reasons I don’t trust her, but I trust Trump even less. So it’s back to voting for the lessor of the two evils.

Do you believe Hillary when she says she never has once been influenced to vote one way or another due to donor money?

I don’t buy that donating to a political campaign gets you the special treatment you assume it does. I think it can get you “awareness” but not guaranteed results. I also have no issue with that. Keep in mind a “big donor” in terms of campaign fundraising is someone who raises a few thousand dollars. There are “bundlers” who work to get say, a large portion of Microsoft employees to donate money, and the bundler makes sure that the candidate knows “these people are collectively donating at the Federal maximum, and are all Microsoft employees.” That gives a candidate awareness of issues in the tech industry (the largest bundled donations to Obama in 2012 came from Harvard and Microsoft.)

So traditional campaign donations represent the collective input of many thousands of people, not one or two billionaires in a smoke filled room. For that reason I view it as more or less reasonable and acceptable for a candidate to pay attention to these donors–the same way they’d pay attention to an issue that was sent to them as a petition with 500,000 signatures on it.

Basically I think Hillary has the right of it, Bernie dramatically overstates the impact donors have on politicians and candidates, and I do not think the kind of tit-for-tat (which is borderline criminal bribery) that Bernie subtly alleges is very common in politics.

Also–I don’t think the tit-for-tat is rare because politicians aren’t corrupt, I think it’s rare because it’s not necessary. Most politicians can raise enough money from donors that don’t expect outright corrupt benefits from the politician, so why risk Federal prison and you political career over it? Some do, obviously–but if you’re raising tons of money from a diffuse donor base it’s really just not necessary and that makes it a “bad risk”, so it’s plain self interest that keeps it the way it is.

I’d say I believe it as much as I believe any other politician who says it.

i really don’t care; the Clintons believe in good governance, seeking common ground, with the good economic and social policies, but they don’t pander to the fringes. They can do whatever they want; let them be President once again.

Ironically, they do seem to believe in good government. Instead of running a machine politics operation, they seem to mainly be in it for personal enrichment.

I think HRC is well positioned to beholding to no one, once she’s in the Oval Office, to be honest.

I’m not saying over the course of her career she didn’t take money from people trying to buy influence. Or that there weren’t times when that was the case.

But at this moment in time she could be taking money from all and sundry, any number of people with expectations. That she may feel absolutely no need to follow through for. Once she’s sitting in the chair, she can pretty much pursue whatever her agenda is, and ignore them. I doubt she wants two terms.

It seems to me no one alive is better positioned to take over the job, and from day one, recognise exactly what it’s really going to take to deal with the people she’ll have to deal with, and the challenges she’ll have to face. And just how hard change will be.

And I’ll bet there’s some stuff she wants to get done, and that she’s not prepared to tip toe to do it either. She’s a pretty tough nut, and she’ll only get one shot at it. And for that reason I think she could end up surprising people.

I think she’ll be beholden to a lot of people, simply because as much money as they made, it never seems to be enough and they’ll want to cash in even more once she’s out of office.

But they won’t need donor’s to cash once out of office, just like every other former president. (With the exception of GWBUSH, of course!) Book deals, speaking tours, it’s been remarkably lucrative for Bill, it will be even more so for Hilary, I believe!

She COULD take their money and do as she pleases, if she has a mind too, I think

I think her greater challenge in appealing to uncommitted voters is about the *appearance * of donor influence. In this vein she has a lot of vulnerability.

She sponsored the TCE Reduction Act to deal with a chemical pollutant. (S. 1911 (110th): TCE Reduction Act of 2008). Filed in 2007.

Two months later Dow Chemical, one of the largest producers of TCE, signs on a loan guarantee for a project under the Clinton Global Initiative.

And the TCE Reductiuon Act went away. Never came up for a vote.
That looks bad. It makes for a dialog that the public might think looks bad. But thirty second sound bites are not likely to address whether the bill had enough support otherwise to pass or whether Clinton had the political pull to get it scheduled for a vote.

It is not enough in politics to not do something bad. Sometimes you need to not have it appear that you did something bad. In this realm Clinton has problems.