Opinion

Hillary Clinton's campaign is going to be a huge slog for Democrats

Defending her campaign is going to be exhausting and demoralizing

Peeling back the veneer.

The Clintons are going to wear us all out.

Even the patience of Democrats is already beginning to wear thin. As Bill Clinton denies that a certain meeting ever happened — a meeting that resulted in income to the family's foundation that wasn't claimed on their taxes, a dodge that certainly wasn't recorded in emails Hillary Clinton deliberately destroyed — you get the sense that support for the Clintons is beginning to crack.

The best Democrats can do is throw up their hands. What difference does it make if all of the above are violations of the ethics and transparency policies of the Obama administration? We've got an inevitable candidate here.

Liberals are slowly realizing how little fun they are going to have in the next few years. I'm sure their spirits will lift a little when the Republicans have a nominee, one who, just like every nominee since Wendell Willkie, will turn out to be "the most extreme" Republican nominee for president ever. But until then it's no fun to realize that the candidate who wasn't liberal or ethical enough to win in 2008, has used the last eight years to collect even more semi-scandals before becoming your champion.

When Republicans attacked Bill Clinton in the 1990s, it energized the Democratic Party. Look at these prurient prudes, slavering over every detail of a harmlessly consensual blowjob between the leader of the free world and an intern! What hypocrites those Republicans were — even if that particular sex act probably wouldn't get past the intersectional left today without criticism.

When the right went after Barack Obama, it did so on the basis of absurd beliefs about his beliefs. The left just laughed at these wingnuts hoping to find the "whitey video," to expose this Kenyan anti-colonialist, to defeat this crypto-communist who was going to nuke the fair city that Sherman didn't burn. And when the right's case against Obama wasn't stupidly conspiratorial, it was ideological. Those kinds of attacks also energized Democrats, this time to defend what they really do believe in. It gave them a chance to talk about the real principles that motivate them, and that they believe motivate their party's leader.

But with Hillary Clinton, it's going to be different. No one thinks Madam Six-Figure-Speech is a communist waiting to destroy the concept of private property in the furnace of revolution. And while she has a habit of saying creepy things that Obama is far too politic to say, the focus of attack on Clinton is going to be a relentless and at-times tedious examination of her ethics. The spotlight is going to be on Bill Clinton's money-grasping post-presidency, and how this may have compromised Hillary Clinton as a public servant in the Senate and the Obama White House.

In other words, it's going to be an unpleasant slog for liberals. Just look at the reporting of the New York Times, which shows how donations to Clinton-branded outfits and paid speeches coincided with State Department actions that benefited the Clintons' patrons. You can't shout that down with the usual Clintonite deflections: "this is a distraction," "there is nothing new here," "you know how working mothers have it," or even the ol' "vast right wing conspiracy." Or at least you can't do so credibly.

Similarly, investigations into email records, check clearances, and flights on private jets can't be shouted down with accusations that this is a misogynistic "war on women."

And that's what's going to be so difficult for liberals as the Clinton juggernaut rolls on. Defending Bill Clinton offered the joys of attacking not so chaste panty-sniffers. Defending Obama was almost like defending oneself and one's principles.

But defending Hillary Clinton is going to be just that: defending Hillary Clinton. It will require constant mental effort to say that thus-and-so only looks bad, or to note that others engage in pay-to-play graft, too. It's going to be exhausting and demoralizing. And all that energy on behalf of a candidate who has all the approval ratings she needs, but none of the trust or love that Democrats want to give their standard-bearer.

Liberals: If you want a vision of the immediate future, imagine David Brock staring out from the television screen forever. And you trying to convince yourself he has a point.

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