It would not be surprising if former New York Senator and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made a third push for the presidency, declared Joe Lauria, editor-in-chief of Consortium News and author of the book How I Lost, By Hillary Clinton.
Sputnik: Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said in a recent interview that she feels “the urge” to beat US President Donald Trump in the coming election, and pledged to do everything she can to “help elect a Democratic nominee” this year. How realistic is this, and what does this say about the current situation inside the Democratic Party?
Joe Lauria: I think it's realistic. I've been saying this for at least six months or more and people have been laughing at me for suggesting that Hillary Clinton will enter this race. That was my belief. And I didn't have anything to go on at that point except knowing Hillary Clinton as I do. I wrote a book that Julian Assange wrote the forward to about her emails. So I analyzed the e-mails that were leaked by WikiLeaks. I've been studying her for many years. I know that she's desperate to be president. This is what she's living for. And time is running out and she'll find a way. If she can - and I have no direct evidence - but I believe that she has internal polling. She still has connections to a vast network of funders and is closely surveying the field of Democratic candidates.
Above all, the Democratic centrists, the establishment Democrats, do not want Bernie Sanders or even Elizabeth Warren to be the nominee. So they first tried to put up Kamala Harris and she was a disaster and dropped out of the race. Joe Biden has been the candidate that the establishment wants to run against Trump. But Biden has been performing pretty badly on a lot of these debates and in other meetings with public. He's lost his temper. He has shown evidence that his thinking is not very clear. He's an old man. He also is all mixed up in this Ukrainian story where the US helped back a coup d'etat that overthrew Viktor Yanukovich in 2014. We know from the Victoria Nuland leaked tape speaking to Geoffrey Pyatt, the American ambassador to Ukraine, Nuland was the secretary of state for Eurasian affairs that they were choosing who the next leader of Ukraine would be before - at least weeks before - Yanukovich was overthrown. And in that tape, she mentions that Joe Biden 'will glue it together. Joe Biden is going to play a big role.' And indeed, once Yanukovich was overthrown, Obama appointed Biden to be sort of the viceroy of Ukraine. And it was, in my view, like a 19th century colonial takeover of a country. And once you get in there, you put all your own people in, including his son, on this [Burisma energy company] board.
So Biden has got a lot of baggage. And this might come out in the impeachment trial going on in the Senate if he's actually called in. Biden is falling behind Sanders badly in Iowa and New Hampshire, the first two states of the primaries. The Democratic National Committee will not tolerate Sanders being the nominee because he threatens their class interests. So they need somebody who's going to hold up the center. And Hillary Clinton is desperate to get in. And there was a poll by Harvard University about two months ago that included her in the Democratic primary, even though she's not in it. And she won. She was chosen as having more support than any of the candidates who were in the race. And she's dropped hints on a radio program recently. She has said that people are asking her to run.
So now this new news that you're telling me about, that she "feels the urge", I mean, she's inching closer and closer to getting into this race and it could be next week. We have the first Iowa caucuses. And if Sanders wins and if he wins in New Hampshire, I think it's a very strong possibility that Biden is finished and Hillary will be supported by the Democratic National Committee. She will argue, in my opinion, that she's learned from the mistakes that she made in the 2016 election against Trump. "Trump has to be stopped. And there are a lot of fine candidates here, but I don't think any of them could beat him. Except me. I got 3 million more votes than he did, and I only lost in those states in the Midwest where I didn't campaign sufficiently. That was the mistake I made. And I'm going to go there and campaign very much in those states. And I'm going to say better things about the working class people than I'd said. And I'm going to expose Trump as a fraud. He's been impeached." I think she sees a way to get the nomination. And I think they will do whatever they can in the DNC to get that nomination, so that Biden, so that Sanders, and even Elizabeth Warren are not the nominees. Now whether she can beat Trump or not is going to be very interesting. But I have been saying for six months or more that she's going to get back in, and there's no guarantee I'm right. But it's looking more and more like she wants to get in and will get into this race.
Sputnik: How does this statement by Clinton affect the current presidential race and other Democratic candidate seeking nomination?
Joe Lauria: I think Hillary Clinton still has a lot of support among Democrats. There are many of her supporters. Maybe all of them who think she was cheated out of this election because of the so-called Russian interference. And of course, even if Russia hacked those e-mails, the e-mails are true. So it doesn't matter whether it was an inside leak from the Democrats or a hack or if China hacked, it doesn't really matter, because the documents, the emails were true. It showed the Democrats were cheating Bernie Sanders out of the nomination, showed a lot of corruption at the Clinton Foundation. So those were all accurate and true, but they had to immediately smear that as being a Russian plot, as if the e-mails were not true. As if a foreign government put this information into the American political campaign as if a foreign power had sabotaged the election from Clinton. But that's not what happened. Those e-mails were accurate. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the head of the DNC, resigned over it so information was put into the campaign, not disinformation.
Again, it doesn't matter who put that in there. It's true. But they have spun that as Russia was and that Russia is going to again intervene on Trump's behalf. We're already seeing Democrats saying this and they're going to really push that narrative that "we haven't stopped Russia, that he's been impeached now. He did not win a legitimate election. I actually won that election. And I need to be certified again in a new vote. And you've got to go to me because Trump is an illegitimate president." I think that's the argument they're going to make.
I don't know if she can win. I mean, she could lose twice to Trump. It's possible. Which would be unbelievable! I mean, [it would be] the absolute end of her. But it's not a crazy idea that she will be the nominee, that she will face Trump again. And she is really hated on the other side by the Republicans. A lot of other people who were independents don't like Hillary Clinton, but a lot of people don't like Trump, either. And he's not done the greatest job. His peace plan with Israel and Palestine, just announced on Tuesday is an awful plan. It creates an apartheid Israel in terms of legally, where they would annex, place the territories and not give votes to the Palestinians. [The] killing of the Iranian general was a horrendous error. The arrest of Julian Assange was terrible. So I have never been a Trump supporter. I think he's been awful. But I think Hillary Clinton is awful. I think she's probably more aggressive, certainly towards Russia, than Trump has been. Was probably the best thing about Trump that he wanted detente with Russia, which is absolutely necessary. It was necessary during the first Cold War and it’s necessary now. American people don't have to love Russia, but they should live with Russia and Trump basically has brought that about. Hillary is very dangerous in terms of peace and stability internationally. She would raise tensions even further with Russia, although Trump has done a lot of bad things to Russia as well. And he gave the military aid to Ukraine in the end, which Obama never did by the way. So I think she could run. I think she will run. I think she could win, but she could also lose.
The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.