If, over the last several days, you have been paying even casual attention to the political contents of the national evening news, then you know that there has been a steady drip, drip, drip of revelations aimed at the HRC and Primadonald campaigns. Let’s drill into both.
Wikileaks document dumps of HRC e-mails
There have now been at least three very public document dumps of e-mails to and from HRC, her close associates and/or the Democratic National Committee (DNC), attained by means of hacking by someone(s) as yet to be firmly identified (1). As this voluminous material has been analyzed by the news media and conservatives, two things have become quite clear: On the one hand, there is nothing criminally damaging in them. On the other, there are contents that are being used to generate political damage; e.g. disparaging remarks about Catholics. Not surprisingly, surrogates for Primadonald’s campaign have seized on the latter and are harping on them through every available outlet and at every opportunity. How much damage that has done to HRC’s standing with voters remains to be seen.
What is deeply troubling about these leaked documents is that there is now a growing possibility that at least some of them were edited before their release with the specific intent of putting HRC’s campaign in a bad light. Newsweek’s Eric Eichenwald has already uncovered one such instance of that. Pursuing this angle, the reporter conducted follow-up interviews with (counter)-intelligence experts. They informed him that such editing should have not only been expected, but that it will become increasingly more inflammatory and frequent as our election nears.
The foregoing two paragraphs strongly suggest that an attempt is being made to shape and direct our electoral process towards a Trump presidency. In that regard, it is telling that a Russian politician and ally of Vladimir Putin, Vladimir Zhirinovsky by name, has asserted that “only” Trump can ease existing tense US – Russian relations, and that the election of HRC would run the risk of “nuclear war” between the two super-powers (2).
Victims of Primadonald’s alleged groping come forward
All it took was the release of the now-infamous video of Trump’s “grab their p–y”guy-talk and his subsequent denial that he ever engaged in any such behavior to loosen the floodgates. In the last 24-hours, four women have come forward with their own separate stories of how they had to deal with the candidate’s unwanted sexual advances in one form or another. What is striking is that in each case, the women contemporaneously (promptly) related their experience to a family member or friend. Those individuals have now been contacted, or are in the process of being contacted by news media seeking to substantiate each woman’s allegation. If that is forthcoming, it will lend credibility to those claims.
Added to the foregoing, there is the allegation offered up by a former contestant in a Trump-sponsored Miss Teen USA pageant. Now an adult, this woman asserted that Primadonald entered participants’ dressing room unannounced, catching the teens in various states of nakedness. This was not preceded by a female staff member alerting the girls to his impending arrival and a directive to “cover yourselves”. To date, this story has yet to be verified.
Naturally, the Trump campaign has undertaken a concerted push-back: The New York Times that broke the story of the women who claimed they had been groped will be sued. The candidate has also issued a complete denial of any semblance of truth in their accounts, and a documentary on former president Clinton’s predatory sexual behavior is set for imminent release. The intent of the latter is to paint the man as another Bill Cosby who wantonly preys on vulnerable women. This expose’ is aimed specifically at millennial women in the hope of turning them away from a vote for HRC. (3)
In your blogger’s 50+-years of following our domestic politics, he has never seen anything anywhere near like what we are witnessing now. We have hit rock bottom as crucial matters of policy and problem-solving plans are being pushed aside in each news cycle, overshadowed by sordid, slanderous, gossip, innuendo and damning allegations. The last of the three scheduled presidential debate is highly unlikely to depart from this pattern. Caveat emptor – watch at your own risk !!
1. The consensus suspicion is that it is Russia that is the instigator of the hacking.
2. Zhirinovsky’s remarks were picked up and published by NBC News.
3. Conservatives have a long history of trying to make HRC complicit in her husband’s infidelities as an “enabler”. It has never worked. Indeed, she has attracted more sympathy than condemnation.