The Clinton Factor: New York Times Study Suggests That It Was Not Voter Turnout That Determined Election

Hillary_Clinton_Testimony_to_House_Select_Committee_on_BenghaziHillary Clinton has been speaking publicly about her electoral defeat and offering a long list of reasons for the loss except one: Hillary Clinton herself.  A new study by the New York Times however concludes that there was not a failure of Democratic turnout, as often suggested by Clinton supporters spinning the election.  Rather, voters simply rejected Clinton herself.  While Clinton has offered the perfunctory statement that she takes responsibility for the loss, she has been blaming everyone else except herself from the Russians to the FBI Director to self-hating women.  Yesterday, she sat through an interview with Christaine Amanpour at the Women for Women event in New York and proclaimed that, if it weren’t for FBI Director James Comey’s letter to Congress, and “[i]f the election had been on October 27, I would be your president.” Update: President Donald Trump has fired back at Clinton saying that he simply ran a great campaign.  That assertion is equally debatable since Trump remained equally unpopular with most voters who simply felt that they had no choice (again) offered by the two parties.  As discussed below, I think that the election turned on the manifest demand of the voters for someone outside of the establishment.

We are still waiting for a serious post-election interview of Clinton.  Amanpour did not ask about any of the scandals that plagued Clinton or the fact that she was one of the least popular politicians in the country or that she magnified these problems by refusing to turn over her Wall Street speeches.  She also did not ask why Clinton remained so close in the polls against someone so polarizing as Trump.  Finally, when Clinton refers to her controversies as causing the loss, she is never asked about the fact that Trump faced endless such controversies at the same time but still prevailed against her.  Trump faced unrelentingly bad press and, in comparison, Clinton had overwhelmingly positive (and at times openly supportive) coverage.  Yet Trump prevailed against her.  As David Axelrod said this week, “it took a lot of work to lose to Donald Trump.” We are still waiting for that interview.
Clinton insisted that
“I was on the way to winning until a combination of Jim Comey’s letter on October 28 and Russian WikiLeaks raised doubts in the minds of people who were inclined to vote for me and got scared off.  The evidence for that intervening event is, I think, compelling, persuasive, and so we overcame a lot in the campaign.”
She also added again that she lost in part because she is a women and said “Yes, I do think [misogyny] played a role. I think other things did as well. Every day that goes by, we find out more about the unprecedented inference, including from a foreign power whose leader is not a member of my fan club.”  There is a remarkable degree of contempt for female voters in this claim that misogyny had to be in play for any woman to vote against Clinton.  It is a bizarre notion that women have to vote for a woman or they are self-hating women.  It sounds a bit too much like “they couldn’t hate me so they must hate themselves.”
A recent poll showed that, despite Trump being the least popular modern president at this point in his Administration, he would still beat Clinton.  Clinton still remains radioactive with many voters. Before the establishment all but anointed Clinton as their candidate in the primary, polls clearly showed that the voters did not want an establishment figure so the DNC worked to guarantee the nomination to the ultimate establishment figure. However, it clearly goes deeper than that.  Even against one of the most unpopular figures in history (Trump was even worse at 63 percent unfavorability), Clinton struggled even to maintain a majority of women with favorability ratings.  I believe that voters are willing to elect a woman and I do not believe that the last election was decided by self-hating women. There was ample reason to vote against Clinton who was not just the ultimate establishment figure but was dragging a long chain of controversies (as well as polls showing that voters heavily viewed her as dishonest).
The New York Times study found that Trump won by “persuasion” and not turn out. In other words, they rejected Clinton as a candidate as they did when she ran against Obama.  It came down to the candidates: “The voter file data makes it impossible to avoid this conclusion. It’s not just that the electorate looks far too Democratic. In many cases, turnout cannot explain Mrs. Clinton’s losses.”
In these speeches, Clinton is rarely asked about her refusal to turn over her Wall Street speeches or her massive speaking fees from corporate and banking interests or support for virtually every war that came around.  Clinton remained so unpopular that she faced a serious challenge from an elderly Socialist. She was widely viewed as inauthentic and evasive.  In the general election against one of the most unpopular figures in U.S. political history, she was not trusted by many voters, including many women.  The new spin is that these women are just self-haters lacking self-esteem rather than the obvious problems with the candidate virtually anointed by the establishment as the Democratic nominee.
Democratic insiders recognized the danger in the loss to Trump immediately.  After many people ridiculed the selection of Clinton as perhaps the worst possible candidate for this election cycle, they engineered an election tailor-made for Trump.  Many concluded that Clinton was the most likely candidate to lose to Trump, including some saying that she was the only major candidate who would lose that fight for voters.  With the rising unpopularity of Trump, that creates both an opportunity and a liability for Democrats.  Some voters may not just blame Trump but blame the Democratic establishment for bringing him to power with their blind support for Clinton as the nominee.
What was particularly notable in the most recent interview was Clinton’s parting words on her plans for the future: “I’m now back to being an activist citizen and part of the resistance.”  For someone who is widely viewed as the ultimate establishment candidate, it may take a great deal more to persuade people that she is back to being an activist, let alone “part of the resistance.” Indeed, the resistance fighters might want a showing of “bona fides” like the release of those Wall Street speeches to confirm that Clinton was not saying one thing to the public and an entirely different thing to Wall Street influence seekers.
The New York Times study counters the concerted effort of Democratic insiders to create a new narrative for the election where Clinton and Democratic leaders are not the cause for the loss.  It was the failure of voters to turn out or Comey or Putin.  They continue to point to the emails even though the content was not altered.  In essence, they are complaining about the public reading the conflicting comments made by Democratic aides and leaders, including the DNC working behind the scenes for Clinton against Sanders.  That point was made in response to Clinton by Julian Assange this week.   There is no acknowledgment that the emails (which clearly misappropriated) revealed troubling levels of duplicity and dishonesty.  They magnified the huge problem that Clinton already had with polls showing that voters viewed her as dishonest.
Again the plain fact is that, at a time when voters showed that they were fed up with the Washington establishment, the Democratic leadership ignored every poll to push through Clinton.  They still have not come to grips with that decision or the control of the party by the Clintons.  The current spin effort by Clinton and her allies in both the media and politics represents a serious obstacle to reforming the party and presenting a stronger challenge in two and four years.
What do you think?

236 thoughts on “The Clinton Factor: New York Times Study Suggests That It Was Not Voter Turnout That Determined Election

  1. Gersh Kuntzman, (a Hillary supporter) with NY Daily News wrote:

    “Hey, Hillary Clinton, shut the f— up and go away already…

    Sorry, Simon & Schuster may want Hillary Clinton to write the history, but I’m not about to let her re-write it. No one deserves more blame for the election debacle than Hillary Rodham Clinton.

    Let us count the ways:

    1. She was, indeed, untrustworthy: Remember her fainting spell at the 9/11 ceremony? Remember how long it took for her to tell the truth? Remember how that reminded every voter in America that Hillary Clinton’s first instinct is to lie? Just like she did when she claimed she had taken sniper fire during a First Lady trip to Bosnia. Just as she did when she said she never sent classified documents over her private email server.

    Beyond that, she was too close to the Clinton Foundation, and didn’t have a good answer when the Associated Press reported that donors to the Foundation got an open channel to then-Secretary of State Clinton.

    2. She ran a very poor campaign: Clinton will likely point out on page 1 that she stayed “on message” when Donald Trump shambled and grabbed p—— all over the place. But Clinton did not have a message beyond, “I’m not with stupid.”

    She had genuine experience serving the public and understanding how the government works. She had an entire party establishment clearing the decks for her (and giving her the debate questions!). And she was running against a madman.

    But when she called half the country the “basket of deplorables,” it was pretty much over. As Mitt Romney learned four years earlier when he said 47% of the country was “freeloaders,” you’re not the smartest guy in the room if you make a gaffe as dumb as that.

    3. She set up a private email server: It’s basic. The only reason to set up a private email server — and delete some of the emails on it — is because you want to hide something from the public. Clinton never provided a good answer to the simple question, “Why would you do that?”

    4. Those Goldman-Sachs speeches. You can’t be a prostitute on Wall Street and then go to church on Main Street.”

    ——————-

    Amen…THE Best analysis I have read about HIllary’s epic loss.

    Excerpts from: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/hillary-clinton-book-apology-article-1.3130675

  2. I think people have lost sight of all that the D party has lost, conceded, pretended did not matter, wasted time hunting for unicorns (the ever elusive national “Hispanic” vote, massively agitating the “black vote”, etc.) on and on over the past 10, 20, 30 years. Go look at the rhetoric recently spouted by killer Kori Muhammed (born Cory Taylor, iirc) who killed a man a security guard, who ”disrespected” him and later that week shot 3 random white men in retribution for ….. on and on it went, language straight from the past 5 years of D party talk since Trayvon. Belonged to the same whack job black church, Moorish Science Temple that the Baton Rouge cop killer hung out at… Just as confused, just as aggrieved. The Baton ROuge killer’s mother went on a crusade of defending him as a “Social Justice WARRIOR”…. God help us. At least Cory Taylor’s father said he was relieved the authorities got his son, no buy in to the rhetoric from the father.

    Obama was a cleaned up re-issued race baiter. And, hell, I USED to be a D. Lost governorships, lost state houses, loss loss loss.

    Meanwhile ALL that the D party talks about in my state (CA) is a mythical group of kindly goodly “immigrants”. Which is vaguely construed to obfuscate the many issues of illegal immigration AS WELL AS, year after year, of too high legal immigration. The refugee game, etc.

    What does anyone still see in the party?

    Just in the most recent of messes, people ignored, did not know, dismissed that NOT ONLY did Debbie W-S get pushed out, step down however one phrases it, but the top 4 people at the DNC had to leave. She was the Chair, but also the CEO, the head of Communications and a 4th whose title I forget. That amount of loss in one day does not happen in a vacuum. Perez gets boo’d (as do others) on the fake national “unity” tour. And Ellison would have been a terrible choice… as is Perez.

    Parts of the party pretend that Bernie, who as far as I could tell brokered a semi fake run against Hillary then got hooked on the crowds and attention and it worried the Dems, or the fake Indian in MASS. Parts of the party pretend these two people matter, so very much… I consider both discredited and easily toppled, if anyone would bother. Then down the ladder to the Cory Bookers. Oh save us.

    The Clintons have had their filthy fingers in it all for decades. Not to even start on the decades of scandals.

    • DSW lost her position as head of the DNC, BUT she won her position again as senator against Tim Canova. Obama was all about her as well as the rest of the establishment crud. Not quite sure why you think Bernie “brokered a semi fake run against Hillary” – I think he was an authentic candidate who somehow was brought to heel.

      • I never noticed that other than having to leave as Chair that anything much happened to her, within 24 hours she was, first an unofficial advisor to Hillary and within a day or two the press referred to her as a Senior Advisor. State senator? I m hardly surprised. The party rewards its cherished horribles. She is one.

        Bernie? He abandoned his earlier quite sane rhetoric about jobs and immigration, which if the game, as presented over and over, was he could win against Trump (for WHOM I did nto vote) would have been leverage for him. He capitulated several times to Hillary, most egregiously on her emails and did so in the highest profile way possible, in a debate that got coverage and viewership. Appalling. No, I never bought the game. And he never said anything of value on the many wars and when asked specifically on Syria pulled out the boring burned chestnut of ”involving other Arab nations” and named KSA. And then he campaigned for her. HAD he believed anything at all about her (and there is so much to pick from !!), he’d have packed and gone home. Been a true renegade. Esp at his age.

  3. Clinton won the popular vote – and lost the electoral vote because of three battleground states. So, that people rejected her doesn’t add up…you know like in math.
    About 77,000 people in small mid-west cities and towns got to decide who would be President.

    But…. I want to personally thank you for Trump and keeping up the divisiveness.

    • Many of the right-wing posters to this blog seem to presume that Trump won in a landslide, and that therefore neither the Russians nor Comey nor much of anything else could have changed the result. Trump and his apologists certainly act like he won in a landslide.

      Out of all the millions who voted in the election, could the actions of the Russians and of Comey have caused those 77,000 to vote the way they did? I suspect they did.

      • Were the 1917 V. I. Lenin Bolsheviks [plus J. S. Stalin] a “landslide majority” v. A. Kerensky’s Mensheviks, Respected Jay? Was A. Hitler’s NASDAP a 1933 Bundestag majority? Neither was. When you have barely over 50% of USA voters exercising democracy’s greatest franchise for 100-years plus [courtesy, the Wall St. of those times]……well, wasn’t G. Santayana right about “Those who ignore history….?”

        Forgive my usual rhetorical questions. I’ve no better answers than any o’ y’all 🙂

    • Mary,…
      -If Hillary had only campaigned harder in California, she might have “won” by 4 million, or 5 million votes.
      California has the largest electoral vote prize by far….the winner takes all (55
      E.C. votes)
      There is no “extra credit” given beyond those 55 votes

  4. Jay S: Thank you for your contributions to this blog. You show up, you are trying your best. You get a Participation Trophy. You make me believe that, in America, one can achieve anything “they” dream. You are truly an America Idol.

    And now, I’m going to try to be a walk-on player for the Notre Dame Nittany Lions.

  5. DNC sez don’t look at facts just send us $$$$. what can we do? Primary the crap out of the existing deadwood and ignore the DNC “resistance” – it is a toxic brand well past its sell-by date.

    HA Goodman points out: Dems cheat AND lose

  6. They wanted their Russians now 35 years gone but instead got Putin and tried to blame it on someone else. but….truth to tell Putin not only didn’t want them around but would eat their lunch and spit out the pieces in disgust. . Putin is a nationalist for sure but not and international socialist like the DNC.

      • Nope,it was the super delegates and otherwise shenanigans that cost Bernie the nomination. But it all worked out because millions have exited from the Democratic party

        • Bernie lost the sum of popular votes tallied in primaries and caucuses (by a margin of 55% to 43%). This isn’t esoteric information, autumn. The 23 states Bernie carried have a little more than 20% of the voting population.

          Just deal.

          • Why don’t YOU deal? Bernie STILL remains the MOST popular pol. As far the shenignans with the primaries there is already enough out there. Bernie’s mistake was running under the Dem party

            BUT most importantly dems exited and its the independents who will carry the vote from here on outt.

            • Bernie’s mistake was running under the Dem party

              Yes, I’m sure he’d have made it to Pennsylvania Ave. as the Green Party candidate.

              • Jeezus Effing Christ, Respected Seeking Susan!!! Surely you DON’T MEAN the twisted power-freaks at DCCC would not have gone to any length – including throwing the entire match to the Orange Nightmare – just in order to “protect their turf”!!!!

                I’m 78 [Seventy-Eight] years old which means I’ve watched [even participated in] a fair number of starry-eyed Children’s Crusades that marched straight into the cooperating, non-partisan buzz-saws of Richard Nixon AND Richard Daley!

                i’m NOT “on your case” nor even on Bernie’s D.S. Susan. Honest! Want to change things for the better? Here’s how: WORK LOCALLY WITHIN THE MUCH MALIGNED TWO-PARTY SYSTEM UNTIL THE “SENIOR GREED HEADS” WAKE UP TO THEIR PARTIES [PUN INTENDED ] HAVING SLIPPED THROUGH THEIR COLD, DEAD FINGERS.

                This will take a while. Decades possibly. But y’all WON’T have fcked-up near as badly as my generation did.

                Bon chance an’ ‘at:)

    • But then ignoring the Constitution and then complaining is in and of itself BS which sort of defines the left quite nicely. Now they have this Castro imitator with no vocabulary to shoot more holes in their feet.

      Estupido tontos.

  7. Will someone please show me how the average American voter was influenced by the Russians?

    One, give me just one practical application of their strategy and the mechanisms that were used ? Please supply data to support any assertions.

      • I don’t know about you, Bob, but I was promised four bottles of vodka and a dozen tins of the finest, Russian caviar in exchange for my vote for Trump. Didn’t you get the email? Every American, with the ability to vote, including those on our soil, who were rounded up by the Democrats to vote illegally, got the email. It was from Vladimir, at the Kremlin, and it swayed the election in Trump’s favor. . .Americans are such suckers for booze and fish eggs.

        • I had my case of Vodka delivered to our new summer dacha. You need to negotiate better next time 😉

          • Bam bam and tangential Bob – y’all are making me laugh so hard (a good thing) BUT I am pissed that I never got the vodka!!

    • According to Comey the Russians were behind the hack of the DNC. Did that influence the election? Maybe Did the Gucifer 2 0.hack of Podesta influence the election? Probably very little.

      • The Clinton campaign and Comey did far more damage than the Russians as it turned out but Comey said today that the Russians are still actively involved and will be in 2018 and 2020.

      • Comey is so utterly compromised and full of crap at this point that he needs to shut the hell up, pack up his desk and go.

        • Up until yesterday, I wouldn’t have agreed with you. But yesterday, I find myself thinking this man needs to go. The Democrats hate him, the Republicans don’t think much better of him. The FBI comes across looking “silly”. I did agree that Loretta letting Billy on the plane was a “capper” though.

  8. Jake Tapper: “Hillary Clinton today accepting full responsibility for the election loss…except for the part where she blames Comey, Putin, WikiLeaks, misogyny and the media.”

    • Yes Mike,

      Autumn and I and others here not only work for the Russians, Putin is our BFF (to use the shadowbrokers coinage)!

      People who aren’t afraid to think for themselves don’t feel badly about reading information anywhere. Shoot, I even occasionally read the nytimes even though they purposely lied about Iraq and helped get about 1 million people killed and counting!

      It’s an interview. People can watch it and see if what Assange is saying makes sense.

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