|Hillary is still in the running.|
Bllogging at the Huffington Post yesterday, prior to the scary NH results, Lesleyann Coker tellingly titles her piece: "I'm not ashamed to like Hillary." Coker writes:
I like Hillary.
There, I said it.
I'm tired of feeling like a pariah. Liking Bernie Sanders is cool. Liking Hillary Clinton is not.
Whenever I tell people I like Hillary, I'm met with incredulous stares and voices dripping with disgust. "Really?" they ask. "Why? How can you like her?" You'd think I confessed to killing puppies the way they carry on.
I'm then met with a litany of common refrains. "She lies. You can't trust her. Remember Benghazi?" Or my personal favorite, "She's a Clinton. She thinks she's entitled."
And those are just my Democrat friends! My Republican friends are even more unrelenting in their irrational disdain for this woman.
Yet when I ask them to explain, they can't delve deeper than the platitudes.
When President Obama famously said to Hillary in a debate before the New Hampshire primary in 2008, "You're likable enough," he was tapping into a deep vein of unlikability that surrounds her like a cone of shame.
I can't think of another national figure, politician or celebrity who has been as scrutinized and savaged for over two decades the way Hillary has.
In addition to the run of the mill haters, she has to contend with more stereotypes and overt sexism than anyone else in modern politics.
When Bernie raises his voice, it's cute and humorous. He's the beloved cranky grandpa. Memes are created. When Hillary raises her voice, she's a shrill, angry woman, and the hate ensues. Yet if she's soft spoken, compassionate or shows too much emotion, she's criticized as weak. She's damned if she does, damned if she doesn't.
Any other public servant would have left politics for a career where character assassination isn't standard practice.