Betrayal: Why Clinton’s Lies Should Matter To Democrats

via Flickr - Brett Weinstein
via Flickr – Brett Weinstein

Since the beginning of last year, Hillary Clinton has been unable to escape an email scandal that has dogged her campaign. In effort to defend her legitimacy, Clinton has repeatedly assuaged concerns by insisting her private server did not violate federal regulations, such practice was common amongst previous Secretary’s of State, security was never compromised, she had been fully transparent and compliant with the ongoing inquiry, and the entire controversy would eventually blow over once the facts were released. Most Democratic Party members uncritically accepted this story, lending her the support needed to clinch the nomination.

Unfortunately, all of these claims were false. The recent State Department Office of Inspector General report clearly demonstrates Hillary Clinton lied to the public by misrepresenting the severity of her actions. Point-by-point, the report refutes the narrative she used to maintain legitimacy and win the primary.

Every Democrat should be infuriated by Hillary Clinton’s action. Denying full knowledge of the situation, she manipulated the base into believing she is a trustworthy victim of both sexism and a vast, ongoing right-wing conspiracy to deny her candidacy. All along, she secretly knew the gravity of this situation and had to expect the eventual discrediting of her talking points.

Strategically, this was irrelevant so long as disclosure occurred after receiving the necessary delegates to win the primary. At that point, Clinton will have all but forced the base to participate in her irrational, yet commonly used strategy of denial that addresses scandal by simultaneously refusing its existence and rejecting all responsibility. In this process, she has successfully reduced the chances Bernie Sanders can win the nomination despite his bipartisan popularity and repeated favorability in match ups against Republican candidate Donald Trump.

This is all to say, Hillary Clinton betrayed the party for personal gain. This fact is ironic given the recent insistence that Bernie Sanders is self-interested and his supporters should sacrifice their values and ideological commitments to rally between Clinton for the purpose of defeating the racist, homophobic, sexist, ablist, bourgeois monster nominated by the Republican Party. Repeatedly, Team Clinton has argued failure to rally behind their candidate reflects both white, straight, cisgendered male privilege and betrayal of the Democratic Party.

To this, I respond, no, Hillary Clinton is the quintessential embodiment of white, straight, cisgendered class privilege who just manipulated the Democratic base into an electoral quagmire that threatens the citizenship and safety of its constituents. The election of Donald Trump portends the nomination of reactionary Supreme Court Justices that make Scalia look like a liberal, the adoption of policies that eliminate economic security for the majority of Americans, and military actions that threaten the existence of Middle Eastern populations. This directly places all racial minorities, women, immigrants, LGBT, and working class people in danger. To Clinton, such risks are clearly secondary to her political ambitions. This renders her unqualified and untrustworthy to lead the party.

My only hope is that rank-in-file Clinton supporters will recognize this before the convention and deny her the nomination. Otherwise, we take great risks in electing a demagogue with vast potential to harm humanity. TC mark

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