Tag Archives: presidential candidates

Clinton needs to do more of this: answer questions

Hillary Clinton has been keeping a low profile of late, steering clear of nosy reporters whose job is to inform the public about the men and women who seek to lead the powerful nation in the world.

But she relented — finally — to reporters’ curiosity about a number of issues that have dogged the presidential candidate of late.

She spent time answering questions, jousting on occasion.

There must be much more of this as Clinton’s campaign continues to develop.


Clinton’s Republican foes have chided her for her absence in front of reporters. They have needled her because she’s answered so few questions relating to private emails, her enormous speaking fees, her participation in the Clinton Foundation — all these matters that speak to a number of questions people have about the Democratic Party candidate.

It goes with the territory, which Clinton surely knows already.

She spent eight years as first lady, six years as a U.S. senator and four years as secretary of state. Every one of those posts requires accessibility for the media, which act as the agents for the public.

Alex Semindinger writes for RealClearPolitics: “The former secretary of state is a practiced communicator. Most of what she told the scrum of national media echoed what she’s said before. Nevertheless, her words ricocheted through social media and cable television in an instant, revisiting subjects she’s strained to bury.”

Clinton needs to toss the shovel aside and stop seeking to bury these issues. They’re out there and she needs to explain herself.


Here we go again, Gov. Perry

Rachel Maddow is no fan of former Texas Gov. Rick Perry.

There. I’ve stipulated what many folks know already about the liberal commentator for MSNBC.

That all said, she noted Friday night that Perry is about to break another “glass ceiling” for Republican presidential candidates. He’s about to become the first candidate under felony indictment to seek his party’s presidential nomination. He’ll make his announcement on June 4.

The Texas Tribune has posted a fascinating analysis on the pluses and minuses of a Perry presidential campaign.


You remember the indictment, yes? A Travis County grand jury indicted Perry in 2014 on charges of abuse of power and coercion when he tried to get the Democratic Travis County district attorney to resign after she pleaded guilty to drunken driving; if she quit, he’d then let the DA’s Public Integrity Unit have the money appropriated by the Legislature. She didn’t quit. So Perry vetoed the money.

The grand jury said that sequence constituted an indictable offense.

Hey, that doesn’t matter. He’s going to run for the presidency a second time, hoping that all will be forgiven from his first — and disastrous — run for the White House in 2012; he actually lasted only a few days into 2012, as he dropped out of the race in January of that year.

Will the indictment hold him back? Will it matter to GOP voters who are looking for a right-wing darling to embrace as an alternative to squishy moderates such as Jeb Bush, Rob Portmand, John Kasich, Lindsey Graham or Chris Christie? All of those guys — and the others who already have declared their intentions to run or are about to declare them — will seek to paint themselves as hard-core conservatives.

Perry, though, is the real thing … he says.

He’s got this chink in his conservative armor, however. It’s immigration. You see, as the governor of a border state for a bazillion years, he has this idea that we really ought to have immigration reform. He also favors something akin to President Obama’s DREAM Act, which grants amnesty to illegal immigrants who were brought to the United States by their parents, when they were children. And … he also favors granting in-state college tuition waivers to those very illegal immigrants.

That area is where I happen to agree with the former governor.

The rest of it? No thanks.

Plus, he’s got that indictment matter to settle before he thinks about taking the presidential oath on Jan. 20, 2017.

Something tells me it won’t come to that.


GOP plans fewer debates in 2016

Even though I generally like to see candidates for high office mix it up in public, I have to applaud the Republican National Committee’s decision to scale back the number of debates its presidential candidates will wage in 2016.

It’s down to just nine of them, about half the number of debates that took place prior to the 2012 GOP convention.

The 2012 GOP primary campaign was an exercise in ridiculousness as the field kept showing up weekly prior to elections in states. The field was winnowed down as candidates dropped out from the previous primary voting.


Even stranger was the stagecraft associated with many of these joint appearances. The candidates would stride onto the stage to applause from the audience, and to shrieks and shouts from their particular fans in the crowd.

They’d wave and point to people they recognize — which always is an odd sort of gesture that politicians do to “connect” with voters.

The GOP is expecting a large field of candidates. RealClearPolitics indicates as many as two dozen Republicans currently are considering a run for the White House. Holy cow! What if all of them declare their candidacies?

The field will narrow quickly, although I’m quite certain it’s going to be a stronger field of contenders than the gaggle of goofballs that ran for the presidency in 2012. Yes, there were serious candidates among the field, but Herman Cain and Michele Bachmann? C’mon.

I’m happy to see the RNC coming to its senses on the number of debates. Now it has to figure out how to lend seriousness and decorum to each of them.

Let’s start by eliminating the show-biz entrance.