The witch-hunt of Hillary Clinton has been underway for several decades. Comparing 17th century notions of witchcraft with rightwing accusations against Clinton, Stacy Schiff rightly notes in her "New York Times" article, "[Witches] appear suspect in advance of their crimes." Susan Faludi wrote this weekend,
[Clinton] has been deranging conservatives since '92, when wounded Republican invincibility merged with wounded male prerogative... she's cast not just as a political combatant but as a demon.
It reminds me of my role in Yentl when she had to dress like a man to get an education, and she was called a demon as well.
FBI Director James Comey brazenly defied Justice Department guidelines in his cryptic letter to Congress about Hillary Clinton's emails. These emails are back as speculative sport and innuendo much to the fatigue of the American public. As Matthew Yglesias noted, "Network news has devoted more minutes of coverage to Clinton's emails than to all policy issues combined." Given the stakes of this election, this is outrageous. After an exhaustive investigation earlier this year by the FBI that turned up zero evidence of wrongdoing, Comey recommended against pursuing charges against Mrs. Clinton.
And yet this latest probe, unrelated to Mrs. Clinton, comes as proof for the rightwing to condemn her "in advance of [any] crimes," and Comey said himself that he "cannot yet assess whether or not this material may be significant." Surely Comey must have known that he would influence this critical election, and tip the scales in favor of Donald Trump and Republicans running for the House and Senate. As Bill Weld, a former U.S. Attorney, Republican Governor and current Libertarian Party Vice President said, Comey's letter was "disgraceful."
Joe Conason and Gene Lyons have extensively covered the Clinton scandal machine. Lyons wrote this month,
One heavy-breathing, poorly written 'scandal' narrative after another, cobbled together in right-wing opposition research shops and spoon-fed to the news media's deepest thinkers have basically come to nothing. And it galls the hell out of them.
After $8 million tax dollars have been wasted over the Benghazi investigations, Republican Congressmen Jason Chaffetz promises years more of investigations for a President Hillary Clinton. Is this how we want to run our country? Especially since one phrase turns up over and over again when the examinations are exhausted: "There is no proof of wrongdoing." They never find anything wrong, they just keep the country from moving forward.
Individuals in the Bush White House deleted 22 million emails. Where was the FBI then? As the White House began firing the independent U.S. Attorneys, Karl Rove was deleting his emails and later held in contempt of Congress. I don't remember any nonstop press coverage at that point.
After Trump's bragging about sexual assault on an Access Hollywood video, 12 women came forward to accuse him of just that. As Keith Olbermann points out, Trump claims these women are after his money and yet none are suing him. Ironically, he's threatened to sue them all. Most horrifyingly and yet little reported in the news is a lawsuit filed by a woman charging that Trump raped her when she was just 13 years old.
In June, Lisa Bloom, of NBC News, rightly noted that this case, though it won't go to trial until after the election, should not be ignored. You can read that article, which originally ran on this site, here. We can't know if these latest charges are true, but the audio of Trump boasting of his sexual assaults came from the horse's mouth.
Trump calls women liars who come forward recounting his assaults, threatens democracy by claiming the election is rigged, says he will keep us in suspense over whether he will accept the election results -- unless he wins, and encourages his supporters to intimidate voters at the polls. Meanwhile, other Republicans are desperately diverting attention away from Trump's hideous behavior, his failure to release his taxes, and the Russian's hacking of emails to throw the election to Trump.
That is why it is so important that we not let false claims distract us from the real issues. It is critical we not forget the real scandals of Donald Trump. It is crucial we not just vote for Hillary Clinton, casting aside the rightwing attempts to burn her campaign down, but also vote down ballot for Democratic representatives and senators so that she can get things done!
It's our choice, America: an uninformed, bigoted misogynist or a proven political pioneer. It is an easy one.