Samantha Power, Tonya Harding, Monster-Gate, And Clinton’s “Jewish Problem”

Just this morning I was thinking that there was a growing consensus that Samanta Power was right, even if politically indiscrete, in calling Hillary Clinton a monster and therefore it  may be time for her to return. As I mentioned yesterday,Clinton is now being compared to Tonya Harding. After alienating many black voters with the race-baiting strategy engaged by her campaign earlier she is now alienating many Jews as well as some previously neutral Democrats with her campaign’s latest dirty stunt. As a consequence, this is the right day for there to be a story about the Samantha Power’s possible return.

Marc Ambinder first wrote on the Clinton campaign’s attempt to fabricate a story that Obama has a Jewish problem. James Fallows has more. Ambinder notes that at present polls show fairly equal support among Jewish voters between Clinton and Obama but don’t be surprised if this backfires against Clinton and her Jewish support nose dives. This is also yet another case in which we see an alliance between Clinton and the vast right wing conspiracy as she has been circulating a hit job from The American Spectator. Similarly her attacks on Obama’s present votes began as a right wing attack and her attacks based upon his association with Jeremiah Wright came from a collaboration with Richard Mellon Scaife. Add to that her recent affiliation with Matt Drudge and Rush Limbaugh and her compliments of John McCain. No wonder the Bush White House sees her as the one to carry on their legacy.

In response to her latest actions Kevin Drum, who has often defended Clinton, writes, “There are already an awful lot of reasons for me not to bother defending Hillary even tepidly, and I hardly need another one. She’s been voted off the island. It’s time for her to go.” He links to Atrios who wants to “just make it stop.” Steve Benen tries to write in a more neutral fashion as he reports on these items and concludes, “It’s fair to say that Atrios and Kevin are not sycophantic Obama cheerleaders. When they’ve reached this conclusion, the ‘Tonya Harding option’ is probably doing more harm than good.”

Now that virtually everyone realizes that Hillary Clinton really is a monster, it might be time for Samantha Power to return (although perhaps not yet as a formal member of the campaign). Sam Stein reports on a discussion Power held over her book in which the “monster-gate” came up:

The two-plus hour discussion at Columbia was held to promote Power’s new book “Chasing the Flame.” And while a good portion of the talk centered on the book’s content (as well as several apologies for the “monster” remark) much was devoted to a detailed and surprisingly honest look at Obama, his position on the issues, and even the type of White House cabinet he would appoint.

Power called Obama’s willingness to meet, without preconditions, world leaders with whom America did not always see eye-to-eye, one of the turning points of the Democratic primary: “I can tell you about the conference call the day [after Obama made the proclamation],” she recalled. “People were like, ‘Did you need to say that?’ And he was like ‘yeah, definitely.'”

She emphasized that, unlike President Bush, Obama would put greater focus on the general welfare of the Iraqi people (looking at population displacements, health conditions, economic insecurities), when considering U.S. policy in that country. She also drew a picture of an Obama administration that was filled with different viewpoints and congenial debate.

And, to the delight of many in the crowd, she even hinted that she could be part of that hypothetical cabinet. “Because of the kind of campaign that Senator Obama has run,” Power said, “it seemed appropriate for someone of my Irish temper to step aside, at least for a while. We will see what happens there.”

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