- The Washington Times
Thursday, September 7, 2017

Step aside, she’s not done yet. Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton begins a national book tour next week to promote “What Happened,” her 512-page commentary on the presidential election, described by publisher Simon & Schuster as a “deeply intimate account.” The big book arrives Tuesday. The backlash is already here, however — and it’s emanating from uneasy Democrats, who appear to be braced for impact.

“Clinton fatigue has been building as Democrats look to move on from relitigating the 2016 election, bury the hatchet with Bernie Sanders supporters, and prepare for the 2018 midterms. But Clinton isn’t ready to let go just yet, preparing one last major public therapy session before shifting gears into whatever phase of her post-campaign political life comes next,” writes Vanity Fair political columnist Bess Levin.


“Her new memoir is partly an apologia as she seeks to make that transition, with Clinton writing in already-released excerpts that she takes full responsibility for her loss to Donald Trump. But ‘What Happened’ is also a burn book filled with finger-pointing at a long list of people on Clinton’s blacklist, including Sanders, Joe Biden, and even Barack Obama. Democratic strategists worry it will inflame tensions within the Democratic Party just when it most desperately needs to be coming together,” Ms. Levin says. “The greater fear is that not only will the tour trigger election PTSD and divide Democrats, but that it will give a fractious and fractured Republican Party an easy target to unite against, bringing the GOP’s warring wings together in their shared hatred of Clinton.”

Indeed, Republicans are aware of the scenario and its political potential. Mrs. Clinton herself has already implied that she is, well, ready to rumble.

“In the past, for reasons I try to explain, I’ve often felt I had to be careful in public, like I was up on a wire without a net. Now I’m letting my guard down,” the author writes, this in the introduction of her book — currently No. 1 on Amazon.

BANNON ON BANNON

Politics has as many dimensions as asymmetrical warfare these days. Consider that former White House adviser Stephen K. Bannon has a wide ranging, somewhat combative interview with CBS host Charlie Rose, which airs Sunday on “60 Minutes.”

The network already has previewed choice moments of their encounter, which finds Mr. Rose asking his guest to describe himself. “The media image I think is pretty accurate. I’m a street fighter,” Mr. Bannon replied.

In the past, Vice described him as a “right wing Rottweiler,” Politico called him a “rogue and provocateur” and Time magazine labeled Mr. Bannon “the great manipulator.” But Mr. Rose suggested his guest was not just a brawler.

“No, I’m a street fighter. I’m a fighter,” Mr. Bannon countered. “And by the way, I think that’s why Donald Trump and I get along so well. I’m going to be his wing man for the entire time, to protect, to support Donald Trump.”

MEANWHILE IN IRAN

“While all eyes are on North Korea, Iran is advancing its weapons technology. The country recently tested and announced the success of their new Bavar 373 long range, mobile, anti-missile defense system. Everything in the system is manufactured in Iran; it requires no support from outside sources,” says Micah Halpern, a foreign affairs columnist for Observer.

He notes that “Bavar” means “believe” in Farsi, and that the system will be operational by March.

THE LIONESS DEN

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and her father, Mike Huckabee, appeared together on ABC’s “The View” in mid-week — a lengthy encounter marked by emphatic exchanges with host Joy Behar, who demanded to know how the father “could let his daughter to defend” President Trump.

The Huckabees both held their own with grace, candor and resolve.

“I didn’t go in there thinking they were going to give me warm hugs and kisses. I’ve been on that show many times. But I think it’s important that those of us who are conservative, that we’re willing to go into the lion’s den. That we show that were not afraid,” Mr. Huckabee told Fox Business Network anchor Maria Bartiromo in the aftermath.

“We’ve got a position, we’re willing to defend it, and frankly it juxtaposes our view and our spirit verses theirs — which is full of anger and irrational hatred toward the president. I have to believe there are a lot of smarter people in the American public than they think. Their hatred of Donald Trump is so irrational that it comes across,” the former Arkansas governor added.

ONE FOR AYN RAND

The Atlas Society — a scholarly organization devoted to reason, individualism, achievement and the works of author Ayn Rand — has long been a creative political force as well. The group facilitated multiple “Atlas Shrugged” events and projects, including three feature-length movies based on Rand’s massive 1957 book of the same name.

Now comes “Anthem: The Graphic Novel,” based on Rand’s dystopian tale of a society where the individual has ceased to exist, and sinister, unchecked government power is rampant.

The society says it seeks to bring the heroic work “to the masses.” The forthcoming book was adapted by Jennifer Grossman, with slick artwork by Daniel Parsons. Find information at AtlasSociety.org.

WEEKEND REAL ESTATE

For sale: Mark Twain’s family farm, built in 1787 on 19 acres near Redding, Connecticut. Purchased by the author for his daughter Jean. Five bedrooms, four baths; 3,645 square feet. Hickory floors, picture windows, antique beams, chef’s kitchen, custom cabinets, built-ins, luxury baths, large playroom with gym. Adjacent 19th-century red barn includes full apartment and art studio; three-car garage. Extensive landscaping, in-ground pool, stone walls, pond. Priced at $1.8 million through Raveis.com; find the home here.

POLL DU JOUR

60 percent of U.S. voters say “middle-income people” pay too much in taxes; 62 percent of Republicans, 61 percent of independents and 56 percent of Democrats agree.

56 percent of Americans overall say they personally pay too much in taxes; 60 percent of Republicans, 56 percent of independents and 52 percent of Democrats agree.

52 percent say “lower-income people” pay too much; 46 percent of Republicans, 50 percent of independents and 58 percent of Democrats agree.

51 percent overall say “small businesses” pay too much; 56 percent of Republicans, 54 percent of independents and 45 percent of Democrats agree.

14 percent overall say “upper-income people” pay too much; 17 percent of Republicans, 11 percent of independents and 13 percent of Democrats agree.

Source: A Morning Consult/Politico poll of 1,993 registered U.S. voters conducted Aug. 31-Sept. 3 and released Wednesday.

• Kindly follow Jennifer Harper on Twitter @HarperBulletin


Copyright © 2017 The Washington Times, LLC.