From all across the blogosphere the same judgment is coming in: Bill Clinton, to borrow Josh Marshall’s metaphor, has finally jumped the shark by dismissing the importance of Obama’s crushing victory over Hillary in South Carolina, because, after all, Jesse Jackson carried the state also.
A small splattering of this massively negative response (not all of it from Hillary opponents) includes, in addition to Josh Marshall, the previously pro-Hillary Kevin Drum, John from AMERICAblog, Glenn Greenwald and BuzzFlash.
Almost certainly, Bill Clinton will remain popular with a majority of Democrats, but his reputation within the party, especially among liberals, has taken a significant hit.
I think it’s safe to say that the long lasting love affair between Bill Clinton and liberal Democrats has significantly cooled. Can it be reignited? While no one should ever count out the comeback kid, I think it’s going to be difficult. Even before the current controversy blew up, the Clinton years were starting to lose a little of their luster among informed Democrats.
At the end of the day, Clinton, who came into office with a Democratic majority in both houses of Congress, left office with the Republicans in complete control of the federal government. This in turn ushered in years of radical right wing governance. The sad truth is Clinton, for all his gifts, left no political legacy at all, other, perhaps, than for his own wife trying to take his place.
When you look at it that way, it’s a little hard to feel all that nostalgic about his administration.
Still, no one should forget that this is Bill Clinton we’re talking about, the greatest politician of his generation. If anybody can do it, he can.
So, what do you think? Is there anything Bill Clinton can do to regain the love?