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Inside the Clinton Shake-Up. How to Burn Through 175 Million Dollars

A hat-tip to Kevin Drum. for pointing out an absolutely devastating critique of Hillary's former campaign manager, Patti Solis Doyle who was fired on Sunday. Here is a precis of the article in the Atlantic. Much of the original article, by the same writer, Joshua Green was killed by the Clintons when it was supposed to run in GQ in the fall. It's too bad for Hillary that it didn't run then, she might have learned something.

Solis Doyle, who began as Clinton's personal scheduler in 1991 (and who, as it happens, coined the term "Hillaryland") was Clinton's alter ego and was installed in the job specifically for that reason. Her performance in Clinton's past races and especially in this one reflects all the good and the bad that the alter-ego designation carries. I've always felt that the most revealing thing about Solis Doyle is her oft-repeated line: "When I'm speaking, Hillary is speaking."...She (Solis) was infamous among her colleagues for referring to herself as "the queen bee".

Such arrogance led directly to the idea that Clinton could simply project an air of inevitability and be assured her party's nomination.... As one former Clinton staffer put it to me last spring: "There was an assumption that if you were a major donor and wanted to be an ambassador, go to state dinners with the queen--unless you were an outright fool, you were going to go with Hillary, whether you liked her or not. The attitude was 'Where else are they going to go?'"

It's important to emphasize that Solis Doyle was not the architect of the Clinton strategy. It was devised and agreed to by many of the campaign's top staffers, and the candidate herself signed off on it.

But because of Solis Doyle's proximity to Hillary Clinton, because she demonstrated the loyalty and discretion Clinton so prized, and because no one appeared capable of challenging Clinton's presumed status as the Democratic nominee-in-waiting, nothing was done. "What Patti has that is real power is the unquestioned trust and confidence of the candidate. That makes her bulletproof."

With Hillaryland in silent mode, Obama got first crack at those donors. "Some people, were losing sleep about Obama as early as last winter, keeping an eye on his moves," a Clinton insider admitted to me last spring. "There were two reasons nothing happened. First, by admitting he's a factor, you're giving him the credibility that you don't want him to have..Second, everybody thought he would flame out".

Rather than punish Solis Doyle or raise questions about her fitness to lead, Clinton chose her to manage the presidential campaign for reasons that should now be obvious: above all, Clinton prizes loyalty and discipline, and Solis Doyle demonstrated both traits, if little else. This suggests to me that for all the emphasis Clinton has placed on executive leadership in this campaign, her own approach is a lot closer to the current president's than her supporters might like to admit.

And despite her late start, Clinton did not lag on the money front: she has raised $175 million since winning her Senate seat in 2000, which should have been enough to fund a formidable campaign, even one that dragged on as long as this one has. That the money was so obviously mismanaged and Clinton was essentially left helpless to compete in last weekend's primaries and caucuses is the reason Solis Doyle ultimately had to go. The problem, as before, was mismanagement


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Comments (2)

Steve Crickmore:

Obama doesn't want yes people or people whose only attribute is loyalty..He has his ego under control..If his campaign is any standard I expect he will choose first rate people in executive positions. We have seen where having too much arrogance and hubris gets you....A misspent and misdirected campaign is one thing, but in the White House the consequences of choosing 'the Solis Doyle's' to lead anything would be even more disastrous.

Larkin, I'm listening and watching this now Mark Kleiman makes some excellent points why Obama would make the best Democrat candiate.

Steve Crickmore:

For example, in the interview, I just mentioned Kleiman says, "The quality of the friends of Bill Clinton administration apart from the economic team was not impressive..Janet Reno, who was Attorney-General for 8 years was Hillary Clinton's personal pick... She was really bad and no one seemed to notice."


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Publisher: Kevin Aylward

Editors: Lee Ward, Larkin, Paul S Hooson, and Steve Crickmore

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