Even some of Mrs. Clinton’s allies privately say they are mystified by her choice to make the Wall Street speeches, given the likelihood that they would become an issue in a presidential campaign. And to some of them, her financial moves clash with the selfless Methodist credo to do good for others that she so often says guided her toward a life of public service.
But her longtime friends say the contradiction is rooted in Mrs. Clinton’s practicality and the boom-and-bust cycles that have characterized her life with Bill Clinton.
At no time did those stresses fall more squarely on Mrs. Clinton’s shoulders than in the difficult two-year period in Arkansas when she and her husband found themselves cast out of office, financially strained and deeply uncertain about the future. And the memory of that time shaped her desire to be free from financial burden.
This is almost getting boring at this point, but I really want people to read this entire piece, and then imagine that, instead of a woman at the center of it (I suppose some of you will have to block out the Clinton surname as well), a man is.
Because if HRC were a man, every single campaign speech would begin with this story. The sacrifice. The setting aside of arbitrary principles to protect your family. The buckling down, the survival. It’s the kind of self-made, up-by-the-bootstraps tale that is, frankly, quite Republican.
But, because she’s a woman, and because there is something inherently unsettling to some on the right (and very much so on the left) about a woman in power, making the money, rolling her sleeves up and getting dirty, this story has to be sought out. Discovered.
Hillary Clinton is by no means a perfect candidate. But anyone who tries to boil it down, make it simple, explain it all away in a soundbite? Be careful. They’re probably banking on you not digging too deep.