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Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Frank Bruni, "The Juicy Subplots of 2016": Has Hillary Been Faithful to Bill?

In his latest New York Times op-ed entitled "The Juicy Subplots of 2016," Frank Bruni informs us that the identity of America's next president "eclipses" all other political questions. In that regard, Bruni writes of expectations that Bill Clinton will soon begin to campaign for Hillary:

"All of that was a fresh reminder that his proper role in, and impact on, his wife’s candidacy is unsettled and unclear. He remains both wildly charismatic and maddeningly undisciplined. He connotes both prosperous times and cynical scheming.

There’s no legitimate worry that his presence might eclipse and diminish hers, but the two of them together root her candidacy as much in the past as in the future. So how to deploy and integrate him? Is it controllable?"

How to "deploy and integrate" Bill? Indeed.

Forgive me for repeating myself, but yesterday I agreed with The Washington Post's Ruth Marcus that Hillary is trying to have it both ways when she allows her husband, who abused women yet otherwise is perceived as a successful American president, to campaign on her behalf. This is not far afield from claiming that women's rights are at the center of her agenda, after having accepted millions of dollars of donations to the Clinton Foundation from Saudi Arabia, which by any standard oppresses women.

However, I did not agree with Marcus that "What happens inside a marriage is the couple’s business, and no one else’s, even when both halves crave the presidency." If Hillary were to be elected in November 2016, would Bill accompany her to the White House, even if the couple is no longer intimate? And if Bill is or has recently been involved with other women, does this not possess the potential for future security problems involving, for example, blackmail? Could it not otherwise detrimentally affect Hillary's future ability to function as president?

Similarly, if Hillary is having, or has had in recent years, an intimate relationship with someone other than Bill, and this is not revealed prior to the election, could this also pose future security problems for the United States? Shouldn't the public know whether or not she is having or has had any such relationship?

No one is forcing Hillary to run for the highest office in the land, but if she wants the job, she had best be ready to accept a higher level of scrutiny of her personal life, notwithstanding efforts by America's media to avoid asking about her marriage.

Unless, of course, this should also be treated as a matter of "Don't ask, don't tell."

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