I hadn’t planned to post anything this weekend but what the heck. Here’s my response to Harry Enten’s ridiculous Hillary Clinton Was Liberal. Hillary Clinton Is Liberal at FiveThirtyEight.
This is an absurd article. Hillary Clinton is absolutely not a liberal. Since she hasn’t voted in the Senate in seven years, to determine where she falls on the political spectrum, we must rely heavily on her statements on relevant issues and on her actions as Secretary of State.
She does not call for raising taxes on the wealthy. When W was President she said she wouldn’t support raising the capital gains tax above 20%. Now, for some long-term investment gains, it’s at 28%. So, presumably she’s for cutting it.
Her refusal to take a position on TPP is not liberal, it’s cautious centrism at its worst. To the extent we can guess what her position on TPP really is, she supports it. Her major donors, e.g., Citigroup and Goldman Sachs, do. Moreover, as Secretary of State, she helped put together the unholy trinity of international lawyers, lobbyists, and corporate titans who have drafted TPP without any input from labor or environmentalists. She also supported MFN for China and some but not all of the “free trade” deals.
Her refusal to take a position on the Keystone XL pipeline is not liberal. It’s cautious centrism at its worst. To the extent we can guess what her position on Keystone really is, she supports it. The State Department, shortly after she departed but with many of her key appointees in place, green-lighted it saying it wouldn’t cause major environmental problems
She has never championed any truly progressive causes, except expanded healthcare when she was First Lady. Contrast this record with Elizabeth Warren’s or Sherrod Brown’s or Bernie Sanders’.
Her email practices at the State Department were not liberal. They were secretive and violative of the Federal Records Act.
Her employment of surrogates in 2008, like Geraldine Ferraro and Bill, to use racist code language in an appeal to white working-class voters was not liberal.
Her more recent employment of surrogates, like loathsome Lanny Davis and dastardly David Brock, to deny and deflect criticism of her email practices is not liberal. It is not liberal to use surrogate Claire McCaskill to claim that Bernie Sanders is drawing big crowds because, paradoxically, a) the media refuses to call Sanders a socialist and b) extremists, like Ron Paul and Sanders, draw big crowds.
Criticizing Obama for not sending US troops to fight Assad on behalf of the Syrian rebels is not liberal
Hillary Clinton is not a liberal.