FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Hillary’s Assassination Politics

by MARJORIE COHN

For weeks, pundits have speculated about why Hillary Clinton insists on remaining in the primary race when Barack Obama has all but clinched the Democratic presidential nomination. On Friday, Clinton answered that question. It appears she’s waiting in the wings for something dreadful to befall Obama.

When asked by the editorial board of South Dakota’s Sioux Falls Argus-Ledger why she is still running, Clinton replied, “My husband did not wrap up the nomination in 1992 until he won the California primary somewhere in the middle of June, right? We all remember Bobby Kennedy was assassinated in June in California. I don’t understand it.”

It’s astounding that a presidential candidate could verbalize such a thing when the collective American psyche still aches from the assassinations of John F. Kennedy, Malcolm X, Martin Luther King Jr., and Robert F. Kennedy. Many of us remember where we were when these heroes were shot. The pain we felt is palpable. We still suffer from their absence.

Clinton, evidently surprised at the ferocity of the reaction to her statement, made a half-baked non-apology a few hours later. She expressed regret that anything she said could have offended the Kennedy family. But she uttered not a word of repentance for her suggestion that Barack Obama’s death could inure to her benefit.

The response to Clinton’s invocation of the “A” word was swift and strong. The New York Times called it an “inexcusable outburst.” Keith Olbermann characterized it as “crass and low and unfeeling and brutal.” Noting that “the politics of this nation is steeped in blood,” he admonished Clinton: “You cannot and must not invoke that imagery, anywhere, at any time.”

Clinton’s remarks offer a look into her character. In Olbermann’s words, they “open a door wide into the soul of somebody who seeks the highest office in this country and through that door shows something not merely troubling but frightening.”

Before Friday, a groundswell of support for an Obama-Clinton ticket appeared to be building. But as New York state Sen. Bill Perkins, an Obama supporter, said when he heard Clinton’s comments, “My jaw just dropped — I think she just basically shattered her hopes of being named as vice president. To use the example of an assassination,” Perkins added, “I think, leads one to believe that she may be talking about something unfortunate happening to Barack Obama. Couple that with the other remarks she made recently about winning the white vote and her husband’s statements and I’d say something is seriously amiss.”

How, after Clinton’s ominous remarks, could Obama ever turn his back on her if she became his vice-president?

Anyone who “might be sticking around on the off-chance the other guy might get shot has no business being the president of the United States,” Olbermann declared. As Newsweek’s Howard Fineman noted, Clinton’s is “a campaign that probably needs to be put out of its misery real soon.”

Representative James E. Clyburn of South Carolina, an uncommitted superdelegate, commented that Clinton’s remarks were “beyond the pale.” Indeed, the remaining uncommitted superdelegates should stop the bleeding now and allow us to move on with the election.

MARJORIE COHN is president of the National Lawyers Guild and author of Cowboy Republic.

 

Marjorie Cohn is professor emerita at Thomas Jefferson School of Law and former president of the National Lawyers Guild. She writes, speaks and does media about human rights and U.S. foreign policy. Her most recent book is “Drones and Targeted Killing: Legal, Moral, and Geopolitical Issues.” Visit her website at http://marjoriecohn.com/ and follow her on Twitter at @marjoriecohn.

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

December 07, 2016
Michael Schwalbe
What We Talk About When We Talk About Class
Karl Grossman
The Next Frontier: Trump and Space Weapons
Kenneth Surin
On Being Caught Speeding in Rural America
Chris Floyd
In Like Flynn: Blowback for Filth-Peddling Fascists
Serge Halimi
Trump, the Know-Nothing Victor
Paul DeRienzo
Flynn Flam: Neocon Ex-General to Be Trump’s National Security Advisor
Binoy Kampmark
Troubled Waters: Trump, Taiwan and Beijing
Tom Clifford
Trump and China: a Note From Beijing
Arnold August
Fidel’s Legacy to the World on Theory and Practice
Dave Lindorff
Is Trump’s Idea To Fix a ‘Rigged System’ by Appointing Crooks Who’ve Played It?
John Kirk
Cuba after Fidel: Interview with Professor John Kirk
Jess Guh
Repeal of Affordable Care Act is Politics Playing with the Wellbeing of Americans
Eric Sommer
Team Trump: a Government of Generals and Billionaires
Lawrence Davidson
U.S. Reactions to the Death of Fidel Castro
John Garvey - Noel Ignatiev
Abolitionism: a Study Guide
Clancy Sigal
Caution: Conspiracy Theory Ahead!
December 06, 2016
Anthony DiMaggio
Post-Fact Politics: Reviewing the History of Fake News and Propaganda
Richard Moser
Standing Rock: Challenge to the Establishment, School for the Social Movements
Behrooz Ghamari Tabrizi
Warmongering 99 – Common Sense 0: the Senate’s Unanimous Renewable of Iran Sanctions Act
Norman Solomon
Media Complicity is Key to Blacklisting Websites
Michael J. Sainato
Elizabeth Warren’s Shameful Exploitation of Standing Rock Victory
David Rosen
State Power and Terror: From Wounded Knee to Standing Rock
Kim Ives
Deconstructing Another Right-Wing Victory in Haiti
Nile Bowie
South Korea’s Presidency On A Knife-Edge
Mateo Pimentel
Some Notes and a Song for Standing Rock
CJ Hopkins
Manufacturing Normality
Bill Fletcher Jr – Bob Wing
Fighting Back Against the White Revolt of 2016
Peter Lee
Is America Ready for a War on White Privilege?
Pepe Escobar
The Rules of the (Trump) Game
W. T. Whitney
No Peace Yet in Colombia Despite War’s End
Mark Weisbrot
Castro Was Right About US Policy in Latin America
David Swanson
New Rogue Anti-Russia Committee Created in “Intelligence” Act
George Ochenski
Forests of the Future: Local or National Control?
December 05, 2016
Bill Martin
Stalingrad at Standing Rock?
Mark A. Lause
Recounting a Presidential Election: the Backstory
Mel Goodman
Mad Dog Mattis and Trump’s “Seven Days in May”
Matthew Hannah
Standing Rock and the Ideology of Oppressors: Conversations with a Morton County Commissioner
Kevin Zeese - Margaret Flowers
#NoDAPL Scores Major Victory: No Final Permit For Pipeline
Fran Shor
The End of the Indispensable Nation
Michael Yates
Vietnam: the War That Won’t Go Away
Michael Uhl
Notes on a Trip to Cuba
Robert Hunziker
Huge Antarctica Glacier in Serious Trouble
John Steppling
Screen Life
David Macaray
Trump vs. America’s Labor Unions
Yoav Litvin
Break Free and Lead, or Resign: a Letter to Bernie Sanders
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail