I'm truly not heartbroken that Rudy Giuliani has dropped out of the
Senate race. And believe me, I would be if I thought it meant that
Hillary would be the next senator from New York.
In her nominating acceptance speech, Hillary said, "Make no mistake
about it: This election is not about me or about any Republican
opponent. It's about the people of New York and the mission that we are
pledged to." Sorry, Mrs. Clinton, this just doesn't pass the laugh test.
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This is all about you. That's all it's ever been about. This is the
moment you've been waiting for, ever since you partnered up with your
philandering husband. This is your long-awaited reward for enduring all
those humiliating years.
While to Hillary this race is only about Hillary, it's about far more
than Hillary to the rest of us. Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., was candid
about what is at stake in this election. "With Hillary's victory, we're
going to tell Trent Lott that he's no longer running the United States
Senate ... that his dream of a Supreme Court that overturns Roe vs. Wade
and an NRA that writes all gun legislation is dead, buried, gone with
Hillary Rodham Clinton's victory." Thanks for the warning, Senator.
But not so fast, Mrs. Clinton. Signs suggest that your private
jubilation at having vanquished Rudy with your signatured politics of
personal destruction may be a bit premature. Rick Lazio has already hit
the ground running, and things are looking mighty good. After all,
Hillary gained only one point in the polls with Rudy's departure, even
though Lazio announced just a few days ago. This concern about Lazio's
low name-recognition is completely unwarranted. Remember, he is the one
man that stands in the way of Hillary's presidential ambitions. Soon,
every politically literate person in the country will know his middle
Hillary has enormous negatives. She's a carpetbagger who has spent
more time pretending to be a New Yorker than being one. She has amassed
a catalogue of scandals in her own right, not merely as the enabling
spouse of only the second impeached president in American history. She
has no real record of accomplishment apart from her husband. She's a
hard-core liberal ideologue whose infrequent dabblings in the policy
arena have proven miserable failures, such as her plan to socialize
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Against Rudy, all of Hillary's negatives would have been mostly
nullified because of Rudy's image as a compassionless tough guy. And if
that wasn't true before it certainly became so once Rudy's alleged
affair hit the front pages. It doesn't matter that Rudy's only crime was
infidelity. The Clinton war machine is nonpareil at reducing all scandal
to rough moral equivalence. One misdemeanor by a Clinton opponent
cancels 40 Clinton felonies -- theoretically speaking, of course.
Lazio, on the other hand, appears to be squeaky clean, is quite
likeable, and should represent a stark contrast to Hillary in the
deportment department. And he's hardly a hard-core conservative, as
Hillary is trying to suggest. One Long Island Democrat admitted, "I have
a tough time figuring out what we're going to hit him with."
But that doesn't mean they won't try. Though Hillary is calling for a
congenial campaign, her surrogates are already in full attack mode. An
intercepted cheat-sheet of talking points faxed to pro-Hillary guests
scheduled for the Sunday talk shows says it all: "Rick Lazio: Too
Extreme for New York. Lazio was Part of Newt Gingrich's Extreme
Republican Leadership. Lazio voted to eliminate the Department of
Education." (By the way, if I can verify that this is true, I'm going to
send Lazio a contribution myself.)
Hillary tells us she wants this election to be about issues and not
personalities. But at this point, she continues to run a stealth
campaign, refusing to answer any substantive questions from the press.
My friend Rich quipped that we've heard a great deal about Hillary's
listening tour. "It's time now for her answering tour."
Hillaryphobes everywhere should take heart. Hillary's running scared.
How else do you explain her tired old tactic of trying to demonize her
opponent by tying him to the retired Newt Gingrich? That smacks of
desperation. As one who believes it is in the republic's best interests
to end Clintonism, I'm feeling pretty sanguine right now.