I'm a vocal supporter of Bernie Sanders. I happen to think that he is the best candidate to defeat Donald Trump, the likely Republican nominee (as surprising as that might be). Trump often talks about how he is running a self-funded campaign and that he isn't indebted to Wall Street or any special interests. Sanders has a similar message, and it is one that is hugely popular with the American people. The difference is that Sanders isn't a racist and has a long track record of advocating for progressive values. All of which he talks about on a regular basis during his campaign.
Frankly, Hillary Clinton is at a disadvantage on this issue. Everyone knows she gets lots of money from Wall Street. At first, she even admitted it and was proud of it. Her reasoning for being light on regulating Wall Street was 9/11. It didn't make much sense to me either, but that is what she said during one of the debates. Now, she has switched her rhetoric to claiming that, despite receiving tons of money from Wall Street, she will be the toughest on Wall Street. I guess Wall Street just likes funneling tons of money to people who hate them, except for Bernie Sanders. They don't want to donate to his campaign for some strange reason. Can't figure out why?
So right away, we start to see why some people don't really trust Hillary Clinton. She says things that don't really seem to make sense. The "9/11 Trick" is a Republican tactic. And instead of invoking Ronald Reagan, like the Republicans do, Clinton invokes her last primary opponent, Barack Obama. I bet if you counted the number of times Republicans deified Reagan during a debate, it might not equal the number of times Clinton deified Obama during a given debate. Progressive Democrats see these tactics on the Republican side and so, when we see it from one of our own candidates, it really stands out. We start to question Clinton's trustworthiness in the same way we would question the trustworthiness of a Republican candidate.
Then there is the issue with the transcripts. The claim is that Wall Street paid her a ton of money in the form of "speeches" (totally not a legalized bribe). So the question is obvious; what did she tell them that was worth all that money? What she should have done was release the transcripts immediately to show that there was nothing to this controversy and be done with it. Instead, she says she will only release them if Sanders releases all the transcripts from his paid speeches. Okay, he did that immediately. So then Clinton moved the goalpost and will only release the transcripts if all the Republicans will do it too. Basically, saying that she will release them never! That just makes people wonder even more, what the hell did she tell them that was worth all that money and that she is afraid will get out there? Could she have possibly said something equally bad or worse than Romney's infamous 47 percent comment?
It just seems like Clinton is always running away from a controversy instead of addressing it head on. It seems like she is always hiding from something or making some ridiculous claim. For most people, it really does look like Clinton "evolves" on issues based on political expediency rather than on what she actually thinks or what she believes is best for this country. A common criticism of Bill Clinton's presidency was that his opinions followed the polls and triangulated his positions based on them. Hillary Clinton's campaign seems to be run in a similar fashion.
Right now, she is running as a progressive and people are saying that Sanders has "pushed her to the left." But the problem is that many people don't actually believe she has been pushed to the left at all. We just believe she is campaigning to the left. In other words, she is saying things that the left wants to hear, but might not have any interest in actually pushing forward. If she were to win the primary, she undoubtedly will pivot her rhetoric to the right in an attempt to seem "moderate." She will do what so many Democrats have done before and try to appeal to Republicans and in the process will lose her base and further alienate Sanders supporters. After the election, she will pivot further to the Right and try to appease the Republican Congress who will continue to block everything she pushes forward no matter how much she attempts to appease them, just like what happened with Obama.
The bottom line is that many Americans have already figured out that there is a difference between what Hillary Clinton says she might try to do and what she would actually try to do should she win the primary and the presidency. It isn't just voters who figured this out either; Hillary Clinton has pivoted her campaign rhetoric to reflect this. While Sanders is running on the message of change you can believe in, Clinton is running on the message of change can't get past the Republican Congress, so why bother even trying to change anything at all. Change is too hard, and we should just cave into the Republicans. Paradoxically, that might just be the first honest thing to have come out of her campaign all election season.
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