If you’re an Iowa voter who caucused for Hillary Clinton, you might be feeling some pangs of regret right now.
According to Clinton campaign chair John Podesta’s emails, published Tuesday morning by Wikileaks, Hillary Clinton had a hard time using the phrase “everyday Americans” as she mixed with the proletariat in the flyover states.
The email, between Podesta and Clinton’s campaign communications director, Jennifer Palmieri (she’s the one who responds, “truth”), is about a campaign slogan, but seems to indicate that Clinton was already worrying, as early as the Iowa caucuses, that she was too scripted and too stiff — unable to sound convincing when she talked about her friends in the corn fields and main streets of middle America.
In some of her speeches, she even had to be told when to smile.
From Podesta emails: Clinton's Dem debate talking points even included prompts on when to smile pic.twitter.com/E4z31aIQkl
— Lachlan Markay (@lachlan) October 10, 2016
By July of 2015, one of Podesta’s confidantes, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz, was telling the campaign that Clinton “feels stale, with very few signs of the kind of freshness and transparency that the American people (especially millennials) will need to trust and ultimately elect HRC as president.”
It’s not surprising that she had to carefully parse her words on the trail, given the profile of Clinton emerging from Wikileaks documents.
In yesterday’s second batch of emails, Podesta’s conversations with Bill Clinton’s close aide Bill Ivey show that Clinton’s team was concerned that the American people might be too ill-informed to pick up on Hillary Clinton’s lofty language. She was simply too smart for them.
An “unaware and compliant citizenry,” Ivey argued, that hadn’t had civics, maligned government, and lacked an understanding of basic policy, could be easily drawn in by the entertainer, Donald Trump.
And in speech transcripts released on Friday, Hillary Clinton herself admitted to a crowd of Wall Street bankers from Goldman-Sachs that “I’m kind of far removed” from the middle class “because the life I’ve lived and the economic, you know, fortunes that my husband and I now enjoy, but I haven’t forgotten it.”
She went on to compare herself favorably to her father who “loved to complain about big business and big government,” but didn’t realize its merits — just like the middle class voters she needs to win the election.
Today’s material is the part of a large batch of emails stolen when hackers – believed to be Russian – broke into Clinton chair John Podesta’s private email. Wikileaks obtained and is now publishing the emails. The Clinton campaign maintains that the emails could be forgeries, though Hillary Clinton herself seemed to inidicate in Sunday’s debate, that the exerpts from her speeches were, indeed, authentic.