Politics #1: 04.30.2014, Run Hillary… Run Away?


2016 is drawing nigh. The 2014 midterm elections are upon us. The Supreme Court has just removed the spending cap for political donations. The stage is set for a long political season of complete excess… Winter is Coming… (sorry.) Hillary Clinton is the presumed Democratic front-runner in this impending electoral bacchanal. Here are my considerations for your consideration.


Hillary Should Run?

1.      Hillary is an exceptionally hard worker with a distinguished, if brief, individual political career as New York Senator and Secretary of State.


2.      Hillary is a practical politician, not a lighting rod idealogue. She has earned praise on both sides of the aisle by doing the hard work. This started with the “listening tour” and ended up with cooperative work with republicans to sponsor legislation that they coauthored. (http://www.nytimes.com/2006/04/30/nyregion/30hillary.html?pagewanted=print&_r=0)


3.      I LOVE HILLARY. She’s a vibrant, respected, global brand.




Hillary Should Run Away?

1.      A third Clinton/Clinton presidency is intriguing because it provides comforting known perspectives, attitudes & policies. Conceptually, this is the same as wishing for a third Bush Presidency (in this case that’d mean Jeb Bush 2016 http://www.politico.com/story/2014/04/jeb-bush-2016-election-105948.html). Unfortunately it leans our political process closer to a closed circuit aristocracy of political brands. Add to this the South American model of the political wife turned president and you have an exceptionally troubling and a disturbing way to move forward in an un-North American way.


2.      Hillary was wrong on Iraq. It dogged her in debate with Obama and it will still be there for the next opponent. She leans hawk and that could benefit her with bipartisan and independent voters in a general election. Sadly, it’ll definitely cool the core of her Democratic Party base, which she’ll still need to get elected.


3.      Bill Clinton is a problem. He’d be an AWESOME “First Dude”… but the former president, married to the current president, would be a very tricky messaging task. Having him near the office and the White House is a constant invitation to re-discuss his legacy, not her job. Hillary has earned the right to be taken on her own merit. The worst example of this involves Chelsea Clinton out campaigning for Hillary in 2008 and effectively influencing young people on college campuses. (I will not further smear her image by adding a link to absurd questions linking her to his indiscretions) She was yanked from the campaign trail the next day. If Hillary were elected one could not simply remove a First Dude who is a full laundry bag of old issues waiting to be tossed into the 24/7 Washington spin cycle. One final Bill and Hill absurdity, there’s this: (http://news.sanford.duke.edu/news-type/commentary/2008/hillary-clinton-and-southern-strategy).


4.      There are candidates that could benefit from the Clinton/Clinton brand. The HILLARY stamp of approval would be useful to others, without the negative baggage of the past, unresolved, Clinton/Clinton issues that she brings to a presidential campaign.


5.      Chelsea Clinton could have an effective political career in the near future without the parental baggage if there’s a big enough gap between her solo career and their campaigns.


6.      The New Left, Elizabeth Warren, Bill De Blasio and either Julian or Joaquin Castro and their ilk,… would benefit from having their day in court to argue further left ideas directly against the new right Republican / Tea Party extreme. Hillary could distract from this process.


All of this leads me to think that Hillary should not run. Do you agree? Am I missing something? Would you like to add any ideas (obviously my thoughts are non-exhaustive)? I’ll gladly incorporate your ideas as a quotation or anonymously. Please email me liberally. This document, updates and replies will be posted on my edited A.P.I. Blog (art. politics. investing.)


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I’m so flattered you asked!

I love Hillary. Back in 1992 I proudly wore a button that read “Elect Hillary’s Husband”. She’s a passionate but pragmatic liberal whose views – with one notable exception – I support. The exception, as for you: her vote on Iraq in 2002. Listening to her justify her vote then, and later, was painful.
That said, I don’t expect perfection. Even our best presidents have been flawed, personally and as executives. The question is, of the candidates who have declared, when candidates do declare, is she the best person for the job?
I suspect she will be. I did not support her in 2008 because I thought Barack Obama was the best person for the job at that moment. I don’t know of any Democrats or Independents or for that matter Republicans who are seriously considering a run who would do better than her in 2016. So I say, run, Hillary, run.
She could be great. And yes she will face extra criticism because she is a woman (let’s make bets on how much coverage there will be of her face/hair/outfits/emotions) and because she is a Clinton. The Bill factor? Definitely awkward.  Don’t know what to do with that one,  but hasn’t Bill always surprised us? I predict a win.

Liz Bigham
EVP Marketing
Jack Morton Worldwide



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