Monday, February 22, 2016

Hillary News & Views 2.22: Voting Rights in Texas, Schooling Cruz and Trump, Powerful New Ad

Today’s Hillary News & Views begins with Clinton hitting the campaign trail after her victory in Nevada.

In Texas, she returned to one of her primary campaign issues: voting rights.

Dallas News reports:
Fresh off her victory in Nevada, Hillary Clinton told a Texas crowd late Saturday that she wants to take on the state’s law requiring photo ID to vote.
“Here in Texas and in state after state, [Republicans are] doing everything they can to stop black people, Latinos, poor people, young people and people with disabilities from voting,” Clinton said. “It is a blast from the Jim Crow past.”
Clinton spoke to a crowd of about 2,000 people in a gymnasium at Texas Southern University, a historically black university in Houston. She touched on many racial disparity issues, like poverty and poor water quality in Flint, Mich.
“Let’s imagine together a world where no child grows up in the shadow of discrimination or the specter of deportation,” Clinton said.
“If we listen to the hopes and the heartaches of hard-working people across American, it is clear there is so much more we have to do,” Clinton said.
A line of excited Clinton supporters began to form outside the event more than five hours before she was set to speak.
Melisa Vila, a 19-year-old student studying architectural engineering at the University of Texas at Austin, left the state’s capital at 7:30 Saturday morning to ensure she could see Clinton speak. She was fifth in line.
“She’s been a huge inspiration throughout my life,” Vila said.
She was worried about studying for a test on Tuesday, but said she had to make the time to see Clinton. “She’s my hero.”
Sanders has been courting young voters, and exit polls in Nevada showed 8 in 10 among the youngest voting bloc were backing Sanders.
But Vila said she was supporting Clinton because she was the most experienced candidate for the job. It was a reason echoed by other supporters in line.
“She’s been everywhere,” said Ezekiel Nwajiaku, who’s been in Houston for 19 years. “I don’t know where Sanders has been.”
CNN reports:

Clinton rolls into South Carolina with a "mothers" strategy

Five African-American mothers who lost sons to gun violence will join the Clinton campaign for South Carolina events, including the mothers of Trayvon Martin and Eric Garner.
The Bernie Sanders campaign will counter with an ad featuring Garner's daughter -- a reminder of the generational split playing out in the Democratic race.
CNN's Nia-Malika Henderson says the South Carolina competition is being watched as a barometer of how the conversation about racial inequality will carry on as the primary calendar unfolds.
"One of the things progressives want to see is to put racial inequality on par with income inequality. If they can make Sanders as passionate about that issue, they feel they would have won, as well as pushing Clinton to the left."
Time reports:
Celebrating a solid victory in the Nevada caucuses, Hillary Clinton flew into friendly terrain in Houston on Saturday night with a message of unity and movement building, asking her supporters to “imagine a tomorrow” where “every American will have a role to play.”
Clinton did not mention Bernie Sanders’ name, but after winning support among a diverse coalition in the Nevada caucuses, her message of building seemed to echo her opponent’s.
“No one can break down every barrier alone, not even the president of the United States,” Clinton said to 2,000 people in a gymnasium at Texas Southern University. “It’s got to be mission of our entire nation. I think we’re all in this together, and we all do better when we all do better. … I have never believed in dividing America between us and them.”
Clinton came to Houston flush from a win in Nevada, where for weeks polls had shown Sanders tightening the gap. Her aides seemed to downplay the Nevada results in the days before the caucus. But she came out of the state looking stronger than after her landslide defeat in New Hampshire.
“You having a great night or what?” Clinton said to her crowd of some 2,000 people. “I sure have.”
The upcoming states are significantly more diverse than Iowa and New Hampshire, and Clinton focused on voting rights and immigration. Her surrogates repeatedly noted the diversity among her supporters in the room.
“I’m excited because this will take all of us working together, looking out for one another, lifting each other up,” she said.
Clinton ended by asking her to supporters to “imagine a tomorrow” where her white paper proposals on climate change, immigration reform and college tuition are policy.
“With your help my friends that is the tomorrow we will build for this great country of ours,” she said. “That is the the tomorrow that I want you to work with me to achieve. That is the tomorrow where each and every person will have a role to play.”

The New York Times reports:
One of Saturday’s biggest election surprises was the entrance and exit polling measuring Hispanic voters in the Nevada caucus. It found that Bernie Sanders defeated Hillary Clinton by eight percentage points among Hispanic voters, overturning months of conventional wisdom about Mrs. Clinton’s strength among nonwhites.
But there are a lot of reasons to question the findings from the polls. They have a small sample of precincts and voters, and they simply were not devised to provide precise estimates of the Hispanic vote.
The actual election returns in Las Vegas’s Clark County hint at a different story. Analyzed neighborhood by neighborhood, they suggest that Mrs. Clinton might have won the Hispanic vote by a comfortable margin. She won about 60 percent of delegates in heavily Hispanic areas, a result that calls the finding of the polling into question.
There is not much evidence, though, that Mrs. Clinton won Hispanic voters by the sort of landslide margin that she did eight years ago. That’s a good sign for Mr. Sanders, who needs to make up for the huge swing among black voters, who have gone from uniformly for President Obama to uniformly for Mrs. Clinton.
Slate reports:
The result will calm the nerves of Clinton’s supporters, while also giving her some much-needed momentum ahead of next Saturday’s South Carolina primary, which she is favored to win easily. Assuming Clinton does prevail in the Palmetto State next week, she will then be set up nicely heading into Super Tuesday on March 1, which will include similarly friendly territory in the form of southern states like Arkansas, Alabama, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia. The rest of March, meanwhile, includes several big, delegate-rich contests that Clinton won eight years ago during her battle with then-Sen. Barack Obama, including Michigan, Florida, and Ohio.
Taken together with the results in Iowa and New Hampshire, there’s no doubt that Sanders has become a much more formidable challenger to Clinton than anyone expected when he jumped into the Democratic race last year. The problem for Sanders, though, is that his narrow path to the nomination will become slightly narrower now that he came up short in Nevada, where an upset victory could have given him a major boost before the nominating contest heads south.
And what about Clinton’s much-hyped firewall in states with large proportions of minority voters? The early results paint a somewhat blurry picture when it comes to Hispanics and Latinos. According to early entrance and exit polls, Sanders won among that demographic, 53 percent to 44 percent. Those numbers, though, appear to be at odds with the reality on the ground in Hispanic-heavy areas around Las Vegas, many of which favored Clinton. As FiveThirtyEight’s Harry Enten noted, the map of 2016 looks a whole lot like the one from 2008, when Clinton won the state and entrance polls showed her winning handily among Latinos.
The picture is much clearer—and more troubling for Bernie—among black voters. According to exit and entrance polling conducted by CBS News, Hillary was the clear favorite among black caucusgoers by more than a 3-to-1 margin, with 76 percent backing her compared to only 22 percent who caucused for Sanders. As the New York Times’ Nate Cohen points out, meanwhile, Clinton dominated in six of the state’s majority-black precincts, winning 96 delegates to Sanders’ 7. If Sanders can’t find a way to make serious inroads among black Democrats before the end of the month, Nevada could be only the first in a string of defeats in the nominating contests to come.
On CNN, Clinton schooled Ted Cruz and Donald Trump on foreign policy.

Politics USA reports:
Hillary Clinton made short work of Donald Trump and Ted Cruz after she was asked a foreign policy question on CNN.
TAPPER: As a former secretary of state, I really am interested in your views on the foreign policy issue that has emerged on the Republican side that I’m sure you have opinions about.
Donald Trump was asked this week about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and he said — quote — “Let me be sort of a neutral guy. I don’t want to say whose fault it is. I don’t think it helps.”
Now, Senator Ted Cruz, on the other hand, said — quote — “I have no intention of being neutral.” He would be standing by Israel.
You’re a former secretary of state. What do you think about those answers? Where would you be?
CLINTON: Well, I think both of them missed the mark.
First of all, Israel is our partner, our ally. We have longstanding and important ties with Israelis going back to the formation of the state of Israel. I will defend and do everything I can to support Israel, particularly as the neighborhood around it seems to become more dangerous and difficult.
I also believe the Palestinians deserve to have a state of their own. That’s why I support a two-state solution. That’s what I have worked on. That’s what I tried to move forward when I was secretary, and holding three very intense conversations between the prime minister of Israel and the president of the Palestinian Authority.
Those are not mutually exclusive. I happen to think that moving toward a two-state solution, trying to provide more support for the aspirations of the Palestinian people is in the long-term best interests of Israel, as well as the region, and, of course, the people themselves.
So, I don’t think either of the answers you just relayed to me really grapple with the challenges that we have to continue to work to overcome.
Rep. Jim Clyburn makes the connections between HBCU’s and the college plans of the competing Democratic candidates.
BuzzFeed reports:
Days after endorsing Hillary Clinton, Rep. Jim Clyburn has a specific and sharp critique of her opponent: Bernie Sanders’ education plan would threaten the existence of smaller, private historically black colleges, Clyburn told BuzzFeed News in an interview.
The third-ranking Democrat in the House is one of the fiercest and most prominent champions for historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) in politics.
The next Democratic primary contest is here, where Clyburn is immensely popular. He said he will speak on Clinton’s behalf at Union Baptist Church in Charleston on Sunday — and also to Clinton herself to map out a game plan about whether the two will campaign together in South Carolina before the Feb. 27 primary.
But on Saturday he told BuzzFeed News in a telephone interview that while he acknowledged Sanders’ campaign is gaining traction with college-aged students in South Carolina, the education plan they’re attracted to doesn’t protect institutions like nearby Claflin University, which is private.
“You’ve got to think about the consequences of things,” Clyburn said. “[If] you start handing out two years of free college at public institutions are you ready for all the black, private HBCUs to close down? That’s what’s going to happen,” Clyburn said.
“Tougaloo College in Misssissippi will be closed if you can go to Jackson State for free,” he said.
Deborah Tannen writes for the Washington Post:
Now we know that Gloria Steinem and Madeleine Albright don’t actually think that anyone should vote for Hillary Clinton simply because she’s a woman. Does that mean we can forget about Clinton’s gender? I don’t think so. But the question we face is subtler, more complicated and harder to address than “Do I vote for her because she’s a woman?” Rather, it’s “Can I be sure I’m judging this candidate accurately, given the double bind that confronts all women in positions of authority?”
A double bind is far worse than a straightforward damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don’t dilemma. It requires you to obey two mutually exclusive commands: Anything you do to fulfill one violates the other. Women running for office, as with all women in authority, are subject to these two demands: Be a good leader! Be a good woman! While the qualities expected of a good leader (be forceful, confident and, at times, angry) are similar to those we expect of a good man, they are the opposite of what we expect of a good woman (be gentle, self-deprecating and emotional, but not angry).
Hence the double bind: If a candidate — or manager — talks or acts in ways expected of women, she risks being seen as underconfident or even incompetent. But if she talks or acts in ways expected of leaders, she is likely to be seen as too aggressive and will be subject to innumerable other negative judgments — and epithets — that apply only to women.
This helps answer the question that Steinem and Albright brought into focus: Why aren’t more young women (or, more precisely, as Post reporter Janell Ross recently pointed out, young white women) flocking to support the first woman with a serious shot at the presidency? The double bind lowers its boom on women in positions of authority, so those who haven’t yet risen to such positions have not yet felt its full weight. They may well believe (as I did when I was young) that when the time comes, they’ll be judged fairly, based on their qualifications. They probably have not yet experienced the truism that to get equal consideration, a woman has to be better than her male counterparts — just as Clinton is, according to the New York Times editorial endorsing her last month, “one of the most broadly and deeply qualified candidates in modern history.”
Voters of all ages must ask whether the lens through which they view Clinton is being clouded by these invisible yet ubiquitous forces. To make sure they’re seeing clearly, they need to understand — and correct for — the double bind.
Russ Tidwell writes for Letters From Texas:
Food for thought when we Democrats have to decide who to put forward to win this year’s General Election.
We live in an era of terrorism, magnified irrational fear, and anti-Muslim hysteria.  We have seen the mood of the country turn on a dime after Paris and San Bernardino.  The brain stem is doing what it evolved to do, default us to safety.
The Republican attack machine will spend more than a billion dollars exploiting the weaknesses of our nominee, whoever it is, and provoking fear of his or her capacity to keep us safe.
We have one candidate who has been the subject of those attacks for years – and still standing.  A former Secretary of State, former resident of the White House, who is perceived to be mildly Hawkish.
Another candidate is not vetted in a national general election, who voted against the first Gulf War, the one popular world-wide for reversing Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait.  The same candidate sought conscientious objector status in the Vietnam era.
I want to see a progressive agenda succeed in this country.  I believe the New Deal Era built the middle class.  It takes government investment in hard and soft infrastructure, fair regulation of business excess, and a progressive tax system.  We don’t have the votes in Congress to get there in the near term.
But we see the path to get there. A Democrat has to win the 2016 general election.
By the way, who is your very favorite Supreme Court Justice? The notorious RBG, maybe? Appointed by Bill Clinton.
Closing with the powerful new ad featuring the mothers of Sandra Bland and Trayvon Martin.
Here’s “Stand”:


  1. Thanks as always for this ray of sunshine! And I mean that -- your and Scan's ability to remain positive and proactive during this really disgusting primary season means a lot, and helps ground me, and keep me focused on BUILDING coalitions, building a party.

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Dan! It means a lot knowing that people are out there reading and enjoying our site regularly.

  2. Thanks! I second Dan Shea's remarks.

  3. Thanks! I second Dan Shea's remarks.