At a conference in Vegas yesterday former Vice President Joe Biden said what I now believe is painfully clear, which is in essence that he could have beaten Donald Trump. What he said specifically was this of Clinton: “I never thought she was a great candidate. I thought I was a great candidate.”
But, as Chris Cillizza at CNN notes, that wasn’t the first time Joe took a shot at HRC. He previously said this:
“What happened was that this was the first campaign that I can recall where my party did not talk about what it always stood for — and that was how to maintain a burgeoning middle class. You didn’t hear a single solitary sentence in the last campaign about that guy working on the assembly line making $60,000 bucks a year and a wife making $32,000 as a hostess in restaurant.”
Let’s state the obvious: increasingly national politics is about the justifiable anxiety of increasing numbers of Americans that they are being left behind. It doesn’t matter that Donald Trump is lying to them now and was lying to them during the campaign. He spoke to their anxieties and they bought the line.
Hillary Clinton, whatever the significant value of her policy ideas, was never able to connect with America’s concerns. Sure, she came close in the election, but it should never have been close. In a general sense on the larger stage she simply doesn’t relate to people very well at all, and that’s a problem at any time. When people are frightened the inability to connect is fatal.
Bernie Sanders was able to connect. Joe Biden has that skill. I was sure HRC was the less risky choice, and that turned out not to be true. I’m even starting to think Sanders could have beaten Trump.