The surest sign so far that Obama will not be making Clinton his running mate: he has hired former Clinton aide, Patti Solis Doyle, who Clinton fired mid-way through her campaign and who is no longer on speaking terms with the senators — to be the chief of staff for whoever will be his vice-presidential running mate. According to Anne Kornblut, the Clintonites are not happy.
In other Clinton news, here’s a fascinating piece from New York magazine, which demonstrates that yes, Clinton did suffer for being a female candidate. But it underscores what I’ve been coming to think about the gender issues in this campaign: the problem had to do less with the occasional sexist comment from some TV talking head, than with the extra-layers of difficulty in figuring out how to market a female candidate as president. When she transformed from her hawkish persona to her woman-of-the-people thing, her campaign really took off — but by then it was too late.
John Heilemann writes: “Back in January, Clinton told me that she made “a fundamental miscalculation” in fixating so obsessively on the commander-in-chief hurdle. “I frankly made a wrong assumption about how to present myself to the country,” she said. But looking back on it now, she has concluded that she had no other choice. “This seemed to me to be looming over everything,” she explains. “I knew if I couldn’t cross it, nothing else would matter.” That Clinton clearly did cross that threshold is an enormous source of pride for her, an accomplishment she expects will have lasting implications despite her loss to Obama. “I believe that I’ve succeeded certainly in diminishing if not eliminating the commander-in-chief barrier for women candidates in the future,” she says.
Other interesting bit on how she carved out an identity separate from her husband’s:
“The truth is, she is to the left of him on domestic-policy issues,” one of her top lieutenants says. “The health-care mandate. Freezing foreclosures and interest rates. Renegotiating nafta. And then she’s to the right of him on foreign policy. I’m not sure we knew that—I’m not even sure that she knew that—before this race started.”