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Tuesday, March 5, 2019

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Hillary Clinton just can’t stop. The 71-year-old grandmother in terrible health, who occasionally falls down and breaks a limb or bangs her head so hard she suffers a concussion, will not simply go away. More than two years after she lost to Donald Trump in a stunning upset, the two-time loser keeps clinging to her former glory like an over-the-hill Hollywood actress.

Take this past Sunday. A few Democrats hoping to win the White House joined hundreds of civil rights activists in Selma, Georgia, to commemorate “Bloody Sunday,” the March 7, 1965, clash in which demonstrators marching in support of the Voting Rights Act attempted to cross the Edmund Pettus Bridge and were beaten and teargassed by Alabama state troopers.


Then along came Mrs. Clinton, like a thunderous rain cloud, to ruin the parade. While she was invited to an event commemorating the tragic day, she couldn’t help but do what she always does: Talk about herself — endlessly — and make even more excuses about her embarrassing 2016 loss.

“I was the first person who ran for president without the protection of the Voting Rights Act and I will tell you, it makes a really big difference,” Mrs. Clinton moaned. “Between 2012, the prior presidential election where we still had the Voting Rights Act, and 2016, when I was on the ballot, there were fewer voters in Georgia than there were in the prior election. Think about it.”

She then segued to Wisconsin, which she lost in a shocker, and sought to connect her loss with the struggle of blacks in the 1960s.

“It doesn’t just make a difference in Alabama and Georgia. It made a difference in Wisconsin, where the best studies that have been done said somewhere between 40,000 and 80,000 people were turned away from the polls because of the color of their skin, because of their age, because of whatever excuse could be made up to stop a fellow American citizen from voting,” she said.

Talk about “fake news.” Fact check: Fewer than 600 voters in Wisconsin cast provisional ballots in the 2016 election, The Wisconsin State Journal reported. But never mind the facts.

Meanwhile, 2020 presidential hopefuls Sens. Bernard Sanders, Vermont independent, and Cory A. Booker, New Jersey Democrat, were both in town to attend the Martin and Coretta Scott King Unity Breakfast in Selma, often among the first stops for Democratic candidates seeking the White House. But whatever they said was overshadowed by Hillary’s “I was robbed” speech, and the two candidates were relegated to the last few paragraphs of any story covering the breakfast, like this one.

Her appearance Sunday was reminiscent of 2007, when she suddenly changed her schedule and parachuted into Selma in an attempt to upstage an upstart candidate, Barack Obama. The then-senator spoke at a prayer breakfast at a local college and then was guest of honor at the Brown Chapel AME Church, where Martin Luther King gathered marchers before heading to the Pettus Bridge.

Whooshing into town, Hillary brought along her husband, Bill — America’s real first black president — and spoke at the First Baptist Church. “I just want to begin by giving praise to the Lord Almighty,” said Mrs. Clinton, who suddenly burst into a speech cadence as if she were a black preacher delivering a fiery sermon. “I don’t feel no ways tired!” she bellowed in a video that you’ve gotta see to believe.

Her grandstanding didn’t help. In Alabama, where blacks comprised 51 percent of the Democratic electorate before the 2008 Democratic primary, she got trounced, with Mr. Obama winning the black vote by a margin of 84-15 percent.

But Mrs. Clinton was also at Sunday’s breakfast to bash the current occupant of the White House — not by name, of course. That would take courage. Like many other Democrats running for office, she lobbed the charge of “racism,” claiming there is a “full-fledged crisis in our democracy.”

“This is a time, my friends, when fundamental rights, civic virtue, freedom of the press, the rule of law, truth, facts and reason are under assault,” she said.

“When racist and white supremacist views are lifted up in the media and the White House, when hard-fought-for civil rights are being stripped back, when the single most important fight of our time, which makes it possible to fight every other fight and must be, as Frederick Douglass would say, our north star — the fight to protect our vote — is not gathering the momentum and the energy and the passion it deserves, we have a lot of work to do, don’t we?” she said.

Even though Mrs. Clinton declared Monday: “I’m not running,” she went on to say, “but I’m going to keep working, and speaking, and standing up for what I believe.”

While the Democrats may hate that, Trump loves it. “(Crooked) ‘Hillary Clinton confirms she will not run in 2020, rules out a third bid for White House.’ Aw-shucks, does that mean I won’t get to run against her again? She will be sorely missed!” he tweeted Tuesday.

But don’t fret, Mr. President. You still have Pocahontas. And don’t forget AOC.

• Joseph Curl covered the White House and politics for a decade for The Washington Times. He can be reached at josephcurl@gmail.com and on Twitter@josephcurl.


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