Hillary Is 44 Fever At Epidemic Levels

We thought you might be amused with us checking in on the EHS taking place on right wing websites. The Today Show this morning featured a Meredith Vieira interview with crackpot Dick Morris and the wonderful Lisa Caputo. The topic was Is Hillary Clinton Unbeatable?

Here’s the transcript of The Today Show that has Ripublicans screaming and heads exploding:

Vieira: “Lisa Caputo served as Hillary Clinton’s press secretary while she was First Lady and Dick Morris is a former adviser to President Clinton and author of the book Outrage. Good morning to you both.”

Lisa Caputo: “Good morning.”

Dick Morris: “Good morning.”

Vieira: “Well you just heard the poll results. Hillary Clinton is 14 points ahead of Barack Obama. Lisa why is she doing so well?”

Caputo: “Well you know, Meredith, I think it really is just a test of her experience, her discipline as a candidate. And she’s really emerged, I think, in so many ways over the past 15 years since being First Lady as a real retail politician. And she, she is disciplined, as I said. She is methodical. She understands what it takes. She’s been battle-tested and I-”

Vieira: “Well is it organization, experience and money, essentially, that’s doing it?”

Caputo: “I think a lot of it is organizational experiences and you can’t discount the money but it also goes down to the sheer discipline of the candidate and understanding what it takes and not to trip up and make a mistake.”

Vieira: “Dick what about the likeability factor? So many of the pundits said she could never get elected because people just don’t warm up to her. Has she closed that personality gap at all?”

Morris: “No she hasn’t. They still don’t like her but she’s gonna win. Because there are a 100 million peo-”

Vieira: “She’s gonna win what? The nomination or the pre-”

Morris: “And the presidency, both. I don’t like that. I’m against her, but she’ll win. There are 100 million people that don’t vote in America that didn’t vote in ’04 but could vote. They are about 70 to 30, Democrat. They’re women, black, Hispanics. They’re gonna come, many of those will come into the electorate and vote for Hillary. The other reason she’s gonna win is what Lisa, just said, when she used the word, ‘experience.’ The Clinton campaign has worked hard at positioning her as experienced, as a way of throwing a negative at Obama for not being experienced. Now, in fact, she has eight years as senator and he has two-and-a-half years as senator. She was in the White House but so was the pastry chef. The only time that she actually ran things in the White House was ’93 and ’94, when they went south. And in ’98, ’99, and 100 when she saved her husband from impeachment. When I was in the White House ’95, ’96 and ’97 she was no where to be seen.”

Vieira: “But what happened to the Obama buzz? Lisa let me ask you because everybody was talking about him but now when you look at all the subgroups, Clinton leads. Whether it’s whites, blacks, men, women, young, old. Why are people moving away from Barack Obama?”

Caputo: “I don’t know that they’re moving away. I think you have a hugely undecided electorate. I mean, let’s remember, this is so early Meredith. We’ve never seen a cycle like this and I think people are just taking their time to decide. And the more that they see of Hillary Clinton and they stack her up against the other candidates, in the Democratic field, I mean the choice becomes clear. Whether it’s her performance in the debates or if they are watching her through her town halls throughout the country, I think people are becoming very comfortable in the direction she’ll take the country.”

Vieira: “You know people talked about Ronald Reagan as the Teflon President. Could she possibly be the Teflon Candidate? I’m thinking of these two books that just came out. Highly critical of her and her husband and they don’t seem to have made any dent in her popularity.”

Morris: “Well within the context of my basic view that I think she’s gonna get elected there are major negatives she has to overcome. In my new book Outrage, we talk, for example, about the fact that she’s had $2.2 billion of earmarks, including $148 million of defense, in return for which she got $250,000 of contributions.”

Vieira: “But you say none of that is gonna matter, Dick. You’re saying she’s gonna get elected and so none of it’s gonna matter, in your book.”

Morris: “It won’t matter because there are about 15 to 20 million single women, black, Hispanic voters, poor voters, who are gonna come into the electorate drawn by Hillary.”

Vieira: “So women are gonna elect her, is what you’re saying, essentially.”

Morris: “Exactly.”

Vieira: “Do you agree Lisa?”

Caputo: “I think, I think it’ll be a combination of women and independents who will elect her to the presidency. And I also think, I mean I find it funny that Dick says she’s gonna win because back in ’99 when she was gonna run for the Senate he said, ‘there’s no way she can win.’ I’m glad you found-”

Vieira: “But you both think that, just wait, wait-”

Morris: “I thought Rudy Giuliani was gonna run.”

Caputo: “Oh okay. Well-”

Morris: “She never, she never would have beaten Rudy but she-”

Vieira: “But the point is you both think it’s a done deal.”

Caputo: “I don’t, I think, you know, Meredith, I would never say it’s a done deal. I mean we’ve had a 100 polls already. Polls go up and down and I think what you have here is a situation where you have somebody who has been through the ringer and back. And you have two books out that took 10 years to write with no new information. I think you’re just gonna see her be consistent all through the end of this race.”

Vieira: “But there’s a long race.”

Caputo: “A long way to go. Long way to go.”

Vieira: “Alright.”

Morris: “Look if there’s one thing Hillary specializes in it’s damage control. If she were a reality TV show it would be survivor.”

Vieira: “Alright, Dick Morris thanks a lot. Lisa Caputo, thank you as well. We’ll check in and see how right you are in the months ahead.”

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The Senator From Rezko, Part I

“During his 12 years in politics, Sen. Barack Obama has received nearly three times more campaign cash from indicted businessman Tony Rezko and his associates than he has publicly acknowledged, the Chicago Sun-Times has found.”

“Obama has collected at least $168,308 from Rezko and his circle. Obama also has taken in an unknown amount of money from people who attended fund-raising events hosted by Rezko since the mid-1990s.”

Thus begins today’s entry in the continuing investigation by the Chicago Sun Times of Senator Barack Obama.

“But seven months ago, Obama told the Sun-Times his “best estimate” was that Rezko raised “between $50,000 and $60,000″ during Obama’s political career.”

We have written extensively on Obama and his indicted slumlord friend Antoin “Tony” Rezko. We have repeatedly warned David Axelrod, Michelle Obama and Barack Obama that this story is not going away. Not going away either is the story of the dirty politics anonymous memos the Obama campaign was peddling this past week. Again we say, Obama must answer all the questions about these issues in an honest and open way. So far Obama resists coming clean.

Chicago reporters, whose noses are as attuned to sniffing out corruption as French pig snouts are to locating truffles, must be twitching at this sentence: “Obama also has hung on to contributions from doctors whom Rezko helped appoint to a state-government panel involved in some of Rezko’s alleged fraud schemes.”

We previously noted the many connections between Obama and the medical community in these Obama – Rezko entanglements in posts such as Obama – Turning Pages, Part II. Not only was the Obama house purchase, which stinks like an unrefrigerated Chicago stockyard, a suspicious transaction – sold by a doctor and purchased by Obama and Rezko – but many doctors appear to be at least investors in the unsavory real estate deals for which Obama at least did legal work.

The Obama campaign is still posing as innocents incapable of doing anything unsavory even as evidence mounts that unsavory is their favorite dish. “We’ve made our best effort to run the most ethical campaign possible in all ways and release donations when appropriate,” Obama’s press secretary, Bill Burton, said Friday.” and “Burton said Friday the campaign was sticking by its original estimate that Rezko raised no more than $60,000.”

The Chicago Sun-Times however appears to have sources which dispute the Obama campaign. The sources confirm that Rezko was an integral part of the Obama fundraising machine. Rezko also assisted Obama at a “critical” time for the Obama Senate campaign when a good financial showing was needed. One source says “Tony was one of the biggest fund-raisers.”

At the time of the party, the state was in the process of foreclosing on a low-income apartment building Rezko’s company rehabbed in Obama’s state Senate district — a rehab project on which Obama’s law firm worked. Rezko had also abandoned many other low-income apartments, leaving numerous vacant units in need of major repairs.”

The Obama campaign continues to stonewall the investigations and questions being raised by his entanglements with Rezko. We will say again, these questions are not going to go away. Even if Obama could make Rezko questions disappear in the primary season and even if the Rezko trial scheduled for February 2008 were to avoid a media frenzy or even to get zero news coverage – Ripublicans will not let this go in the general election. Questions must be answered now. The likelihood is that the drumbeat for disclosure will grow louder and the perception will turn to cement that Obama is a dirty Chicago pol.

If the Obama campaign is under the delusion that this is going away here is some evidence for them to consider that it is not going away, but indeed will grow. We are loathe to quote any right wing show or outlet, particularly when it comes to discussions of the Democratic Party primary. We will quote from last week’s Tucker Carlson (ugh) June 14th show. We will make an exception now because there was a good Democrat on at the time who participated in the conversation. The guests were Andrew Ferguson of the Weekly Standard (ugh) and former Maine Democratic Congressman Tom Andrews, National Director of Win Without War. Excerpts from the transcript:

FERGUSON: You know, and we are just getting to know him, that‘s the point of this time story and why it‘s so interesting. It shows why there has not been a serious presidential candidate from Illinois since 1956, Adlai Stevenson. Illinois politics is uniquely corrupt and anybody who succeeds in it is go going to, sooner or later, wind up in bed with a man like this Rezko fellow. Politics in Illinois keep guys like him around to help with a real estate deal here, or maybe to give their cousin a job, or you know, fill up a board seat there. You know, this is—you can‘t get away from this in Illinois politics and nobody has. And sure enough, Barack Obama is one of them.

CARLSON: I think his opponents are definitely banking on this. It actually doesn‘t look that great, Tom. This Rezko helped the Obamas‘ buy their house, a very expensive house. The “Times” reports, quote, “the land sale occurred after it had been reported that Mr. Rezko was under federal investigation.” Now this is odd behavior for anybody but particularly a politician who is running on his own personal ethics. What explains this?

ANDREWS: Well, we need to get a up-front explanation that is consistent. I think what Barak Obama has done is fallen in the track where you sort of try to dismiss the story before it takes hold. He says, well, he was a one time fundraiser, I really didn‘t know him very well. It turns out he has been involved in more than one campaign, in terms of fundraising.

CARLSON: Oh, yes, for years.

ANDREWS: He has had an on going relationship with him. So people will find out, obviously, it‘s going to get reported and the story is going to keep going and you are going to be backtracking and you are going to look like you‘ve got something to hide. That is the problem. I don‘t know if …

CARLSON: Well he is hiding! He is—already the campaign said, we never did—Barak Obama never did any favors for Mr. Rezko. According to the “New York Times,” the state legislature, Mr. Obama wrote letters to city and state officials supporting Mr. Rezko‘s business efforts from which he profited close to a million dollars. So he did do favors for the guy.

ANDREWS: Well, what Barak Obama has to do is address this particular story, that particular allegation. I mean, up to this point, if I—the story in today‘s “Times” says look, there was nothing improper here but the questions that it raises need to be addressed and it …

CARLSON: Right.

ANDREWS: Maybe there is, you know, an explanation which often times there is, that can straighten this out and clear things up. So just come out and lay it out.

CARLSON: But it fails the hypocrisy—Barack Obama gets up, I believe it was in New Hampshire recently, and gave a commencement speech at a University and he said I hope a lot of you don‘t do the obvious thing and chose money when you leave. Choose the highest paying job. Now here we find out that Barak Obama is living in this very expensive house that he got with the help of a sleazy campaign contributor. Basically, he‘s as greedy as anybody else. Maybe he shouldn‘t say things like that in public.

FERGUSON: But of course, I guess he means is he hasn‘t really made the killing that he might have been able to make as some Illinois politicians have been able to do.

His problem here now is now a second order problem, which is, how do you explain this sort of thing? And he hasn‘t explained it very well well. Partly there is a hypocrisy problem, but he also has come out and said my mistake was allowing this guy to help me with a real estate deal and do something that appeared to be a favor. Well, it didn‘t appear to be a favor, it was a favor. If this guy had hadn‘t interceded they wouldn‘t have been able to guy his $1.6 million house. And so now he finds himself, pretty soon he will have a third order problem which is to explain what he said in the second time—that the problem came around. So, you know, it is becomes a tar baby—

CARLSON: It is definitely bad judgment. I mean there‘s no doubt, it‘s like, buy your own house. You know what I mean? I think a normal person would have concluded that.

FERGUSON: Unavoidable, though, in Illinois.

CARLSON: In Illinois and you say that as someone from Chicago-land.

FERGUSON: Absolutely.

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The Real Hillary Clinton

We did not want this article to be ignored so we put it here instead of our usual Top Hillary Headlines spot. “If you want to understand the woman who would be president, don’t bother to read the latest avalanche of recycled biographies – just ask her interns.”

Five seconds:

“I will begin with two Hillary Clinton scoops of my own. Early last summer, I went to a party she was giving at her house – hidden away off Massachusetts Avenue, a stone’s throw from the British embassy – and took the opportunity to introduce her to a teenage boy who I knew was going to intern for her later in the summer. She gave the kid about five seconds of her time, beaming at him before moving on to the next hand to shake.”

“Probably six weeks later, having not so much as set eyes on her since, the boy was walking down a Senate corridor when Hillary approached in the opposite direction. Meeting his eyes, she greeted him without hesitating: “Good to see you again, Pete.” Then, three weeks after that, the same kid and zillions of other Hillary interns gathered in a small, overheated office to have their photographs taken with the senator. Suddenly, overcome by the heat, the boy collapsed almost literally into her arms. He came round a couple of seconds later, lying on his back and seeing the face of (possibly) America’s 44th president peering anxiously down at him, proffering her bottle of water. “She was really kind, sort of motherly,” he told me later.”

The article rightly claims that this short anecdote reveals more about Hillary than all the 10 pound books written about her. Further, the article reveals how much of the so-called revelations in recent books have as their source Hillary’s own autobiography, but spiced with lurid embroidery from the cash hungry creative writers.

“So why all this unprecedented hysteria over an election that won’t even be held until 4 November next year? The answer, I am convinced, is that the leading candidate so far is a woman who is trying to break a 218-year male stranglehold on the most powerful job in the world. That, in turn, has unleashed vast tides of subconscious sexism from America’s political commentators, the vast majority of whom are male. A woman seeking the power and masculine majesty of the US presidency? How dare a petty little Machiavellian ogress like her have such audacity!”

We wrote in Texas Tough that Hillary will not be swiftboated. Every day as she explains her policies, her worldview and her decision making process, more Americans decide to support her. Even in Texas Hillary is doing well. The more Texans and all Americans meet the real Hillary Clinton, the closer she gets to being 44.

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