- The Washington Times - Thursday, December 31, 2015

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Ol’ Bubba is the gift that keeps on giving. Just when he thought it was safe to hit the road again, Hillary reminds a new generation of voters why wise and prudent men lock up their wives and daughters when Bubba’s in the neighborhood.

She has dispatched Bubba to campaign for her next week in New Hampshire. Bubba knows how to do politics — there’s nobody better — and Hillary, who’s a whiz at squeezing boodle from contributors with payback on their minds, hasn’t a clue. When she occasionally has a good week, she follows the next with a blunder.

Bubba has stepped forward in recent days to take over the retail end of the family business, and was looking forward to doing what he does best. But he forgot to put a leash and a muzzle on Hillary, who decided it was a good time to take on Donald Trump. Not a good idea.

She was offended by the Donald’s coarseness and rudeness, forgetting who was talking. She pretended to be shocked by the Donald’s locker-room swagger, and specifically his mockery of her campaign prowess against Barack Obama in 2008. “She was going to beat Obama,” the Donald had told a crowd in Grand Rapids. “She was going to beat — she was favored to win — and she got schlonged. She lost.” It’s not clear whether the lady was offended by the reminder of how she squandered that opportunity, or by his use of obscure Yiddish slang for a man’s most precious junk.

Nevertheless, the first lady who frequently turned the White House air blue with her muleskinner language played the delicate-flower card as defender of women against the Donald and the Republican “war on women.”

With her repeated assertions that women never lie about sexual harassment, her careless mouth put the cat among the pigeons. Twitter, where American politicians fight their fiercest battles, was quickly littered with charge and countercharge. “To every survivor of sexual assault,” Hillary tweeted to abused women, “You have the right to be heard. You have the right to be believed. We’re with you.” The Donald tweeted a warning that a fight over who abuses women was a scrap that Hillary shouldn’t want.

Bubba and the missus got a pass years ago for his sordid sexual romps, famously with the 22-year-old White House intern Monica Lewinsky. Hillary called the story the product of “the vast right-wing media conspiracy,” and Betty Friedan, the founding mother of modern feminism, agreed. “[Mr.] Clinton’s enemies are attempting to bring him down through allegations about some dalliance with an intern … whether it’s a fantasy, or a set-up or true,” she said. “I simply don’t care.” Anita Perez, president of the National Women’s Political Caucus, conceded politics trumped justice when Kathleen Willey, a White House volunteer who said Bubba “manhandled” her in a private meeting about the job she had applied for. She said Mrs. Willey’s accusation was “disturbing, but to come to any judgment now is definitely not something I think is timely.”

Timely for Hillary now or not, the pass the media gave Bubba seems to have expired. Glenn Kessler of The Washington Post offers a two-part guide to Bubba’s dalliances “for younger voters who may be wondering what the fuss is about,” dating from his origins in the land of the magic huckleberry. “We will divide the stories into two parts,” he writes, “consensual liaisons admitted by the women in question, and allegations of an unwanted sexual encounter.”

Bubba, like most Arkansas good ol’ boys, had a taste for the beauty queens who abound in the South, bedding two Miss Americas and a Miss Arkansas, who said she was told by “a Democratic Party official” after an affair with Bubba ended that if she didn’t keep her mouth shut he couldn’t guarantee “what would happen to my pretty little legs.”

Many of the allegations (including one of rape) constituted what the Clinton aide assigned to monitor the presidential appetite called “bimbo eruptions,” and Hillary, who helped in the attempt to manage Bubba’s libido, never seemed to imagine that her man could prefer a bimbo to a real woman like her.

Sleeping dogs lie, and the wise man lets them snooze, but there’s always the chance that someone will step on a tail lying where it ought not to be. Who would have thought that Bubba’s indiscretions — which, truth to tell, were not always discreet — would haunt another Clinton presidential campaign. Bubba paid nearly $1 million to settle one woman’s claim, yet the law never caught up with him. But we have Hillary’s word to every woman accuser that “you have the right to be believed.”

Wesley Pruden is editor in chief emeritus of The Times.

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