“Why did the White House let this whole Sestak affair become such a large scandal?” That is the million dollar question that I’ve heard on the lips of every major pundit on Fox News–from Charles Krauthammer, to Megyn Kelly, to Juan Williams (not to mention, Redstate’s Moe Lane as well–see his comment in the diary that I linked to). In other words, why didn’t the Obama Administration immediately leap out in front of this story months ago and smack down Pennsylvania Congressman Joe Sestak, by calmly explaining that he was offered a particular job that he was highly qualified for (like for instance, Undersecretary of the Navy or some position in the Department of Homeland Security or Defense)–and that there is “nothing to see here”? And then, they could have further stated that, “Hey, the Congressman is mistaken. We offered him this job, because he was the one most qualified for it, and we needed the position filled–not because we were trying to bribe him.” At most, this would have been a two day story because it would have been a “he said-she said”–not to mention, it would have been extremely difficult to prove. Furthermore, politicians have been engaging in this type of quid pro quo since the time of the Caesars, so none of this is really very shocking to anyone (at the very worst, it undercuts Obama’s whole message of “not doing politics as usual”, but I think that train left the station a while ago). So, what gives?
Well, a couple of days ago, I read a fascinating column in The Washington Post that compared Bill Clinton to Michael Clayton, and referred to him as Obama’s “Mr. Fix-it”. Now, for those of you who don’t get this analogy, “Michael Clayton” was an excellent movie (see the trailer below) about a slightly shady guy who cleaned up messes for a law firm–he was their roving, perpetually on-call “Mr. Fix-it”. Oh, and in my opinion, “Michale Clayton” has one of the top ten best lines in recent movie history when the title character (brilliantly played by George Clooney) says to the evil, murdering trial lawyer (played perfectly by Tilda Swinton)—
“I’m not the guy that you kill, I’m the guy that you buy!”
….But, I digress.
Now, I think that The Washington Post was more right about Bill Clinton being “Michael Clayton” than they might ever know. What do I mean by that? Well, those of you who have seen the movie (spoiler alert for those of you who have not) might remember that, in the end, Michael Clayton did the right thing and turned on the chemical company hired by his law firm that had manufactured a deadly weedkiller. In other words, I think that Bill Clinton “Michael Claytoned” (yes, I’ve now created a new verb) the Obama Administration, and was secretly helping Joe Sestak behind their back. Yes, I know that it’s a juicy story, but you’re worried that it might be largely based on conjecture. Well, you’re in luck, because I happen to deplore stories based strictly on conjecture. So, if you will bear with me, I will start of by bombarding you with a plethora of facts to back up my hunch.
Fact–Bill Clinton and Joe Sestak have been friends for quite a while. Joe Sestak worked in the Clinton Administration as Director for Defense Policy on the National Security Council.
Fact–Joe Sestak was an extremely loyal Hillary Clinton supporter who stayed with her until the bitter end, and who was constantly on TV defending her. In fact, he was even defending Hillary when most of her supporters had left, and when the MSM and the Democratic establishment were telling her to get out of the race (the Democratic Party seems to have a nasty of habit of doing this sort of thing). Furthermore, Sestak helped Hillary win PA by almost ten points–but, specifically, he helped her carry Bucks County by fifteen points. Therefore, Bill Clinton owes Joe Sestak a lot. And, he owes Arlen Specter absolutely nothing.
Fact–According to that same WaPo column that I linked to above, Joe Sestak was at Bill Clinton’s house so that Clinton could help him plan for his general election campaign against Arlen Specter, the very day that Arlen Specter announced that he was switching parties. Now, of course the WaPo kind of glanced over this inconvenient little factoid; however, if you read between the lines, this is an extremely big deal. Why? Well, because first of all, I seriously doubt that Bill Clinton does that for every congressional candidate (i.e, invites them over to his home to plan strategy sessions)–Joe Sestak was obviously someone whose candidacy Clinton was deeply invested in. And second of all, this is a big deal because it means that the Obama Administration deliberately kept Bill Clinton out of the loop, and then backed someone–who even liberals think is a blatant opportunist–over his loyal buddy Joe Sestak. C’mon, you KNOW that this had to royally piss Bill Clinton off–especially when the Obama Administration keeps using him to put out its fires and campaign for Obama “in places where Obama is less than welcome”, to quote the WaPo (probably because he called the people there “bitter, gun-clingers”).
Fact–Bill Clinton does not like Barack Obama. For starters, Clinton thinks that Obama “played the race card” on him (and let’s face facts–he did–and he played it on John McCain as well). Furthermore, it was the Obama campaign that pushed the meme that Hillary Clinton was hoping that Obama would get assassinated. And finally, Bill Clinton even went so far as to tell Ted Kennedy, with regard to Obama, that, “A few years ago, this guy would have been getting us coffee”–which I think means that Clinton sees Obama as a “Junior” (who should be an intern) or as “The Boy President” (to quote our own MBecker), and therefore, doesn’t have a whole lot of respect for him. (By the way, I’d be willing to bet that Bill Clinton thinks that if you need a “Michael Clayton” to put out your fires for you, then you shouldn’t be president in the first place.)
Fact–Every biography news special that I’ve ever seen about Bill Clinton all say one thing in common–that he is extremely loyal to his friends, but that he hold grudges forever. For instance, when he and George H. W. Bush flew overseas to help promote relief for the tsunami victims, Bill Clinton gave George H. W. Bush the one bed on the plane and slept on an air mattress–yet to this day, he still hates Jimmy Carter’s guts (probably because of all of Carter’s “freelance diplomacy” during the Clinton years). Not to mention, I remember seeing an 60 Minutes expose on Bill Clinton a few years ago where they reported that he still keeps in touch with his high school friends from AR.
[Now, I realize that some people reading this might find it a bit painful to admit that Bill Clinton could possibly have any redeeming qualities at all--such as being a loyal friend. However, I promise you that it's quite painless. Pinky swear. The sky won't rain down fire, cats and dogs won't be living together, and gravity won't reverse itself. Take a look around. See? Everything is still where you last left it. Wait a second....I'm meeelting....MEEEEELTING!! Ha, ha! Just kidding. I'm still here. But, I digress. Anyway, my point is that everyone (with the exception of Attila the Hun and Adolph Hitler) has some redeeming qualities. (And no liberals--I am not comparing Bill Clinton to Attila the Hun or Adolph Hitler--I am just trying to make a point.)]
Fact–Bill Clinton knows PA like the back of his hand–he probably knows it better than Joe Sestak does. A Clinton has won the state of PA three different times–twice when Bill Clinton ran for president, and once when Hillary won PA in the Democratic primary. Bill Clinton probably knows how every county in PA will vote before they do. Not to mention, I’m sure that Clinton knew that Arlen Specter was weak and would be easy to beat–why else would he have met with Sestak so early? You really think that we all knew that Specter was weak, but Bill Clinton didn’t?
Fact–Two days before the Sestak/Specter election, Bill Clinton was in Johnstown, PA campaigning for Mark Critz (who recently won Jack Murtha’s old seat). Now, when he was there, Clinton NEVER mentioned Specter’s name (Obama’s choice for Senate whom he claimed that he “loved”) once. Furthermore, Critz’s district went HEAVILY for Hillary, so just by being there, Bill Clinton was doing a serious get out the vote drive for Sestak (he didn’t have to say anything–once the people who voted for Hillary heard he was there, they knew what to do).
Fact–Joe Sestak has a serious man-crush on Bill Clinton. Don’t believe me? Well then, watch the video below and see for yourself (H/T C-SPAN). Pay particular attention to how much Sestak’s entire demeanor changes when he starts discussing President Clinton. Not to mention, Sestak totally backs up the WaPo story about Clinton helping him with his campaign before Specter announced that he was switching parties. (Oh, and to be specific, the WaPo story that I previously linked to stated that, “Sestak’s eyes lit up on the Capitol steps Friday as he recalled his bond with Clinton”. If you watch the video, you’ll see that that is the understatement of the millennium.)
Hey dude–watch it! You’re oozing man-crush everywhere and it’s getting on my shoes.
But seriously, that was more than just man-crush radiating off of Congressman Sestak–that was appreciation. And yes, I think that part of it was for President Clinton’s phone call to his poor little girl (God Bless her) when she was diagnosed with brain cancer. However, I honestly think that part of it was appreciation for President Clinton supporting him when everyone else wanted him to just go away.
Now, here comes the conjecture part of my diary. I know that Bill Clinton is reported to have had a brief conversation with Joe Sestak (at the behest of Rahm Emanuel) where he offered him a non-paying position on a board that Sestak could not have even served on if he remained in Congress (and that Sestak declined his offer). However, I don’t know what the two men said to each other after Sestak declined Clinton and Clinton replied, “I knew that you would say that.”
In other words, after reviewing ALL of the evidence (and there is a lot of it), I simply refuse to believe that Bill Clinton was happy about being used by the Obama Administration as some sort of Michael Clayton figure (the WaPo somehow manages to infer that this is a flattering thing for a former president). Furthermore, does anyone honestly think that Bill Clinton was happy about being kept out of the loop with regard to Specter switching parties, and then being told to stab his loyal friend in the back–by some guy who had called him and his wife “RAAAAACISTS!!”–in order to help Arlen Freakin’ Spector–a guy with the charisma of Mr. Potato Head?! Really????!!!!!! I’m sorry, but I’m just not buying it–that would require a willing suspension of disbelief on my part. No, I think that after Bill Clinton delivered Rahm Emanuel’s message to Joe Sestak (just like he told Mr. Emanuel that he would), the conversation continued in a fashion similar to this—
Joe Sestak: So, Mr. President, what do you think that I should do? Should I drop out of the Race?
(In my best Clinton impersonation voice….)
Bill Clinton: “Hell No! Run dammit!! You can easily beat that SOB Specter. He has the personality of a toad! Besides, no one in Pennsylvania, Republican or Democrat, likes him. Now Joe, you know that I can’t publicly come out and support you because of Hillary’s job and all, but I know Pennsylvania like the back of my hand and I promise you that you can beat this guy. Furthermore, I can promise you that I won’t utter one word in support for Arlen Specter, and that, come Hell or high-water, I will find a way to show my face in Pennsylvania a few days before the votes are cast–even if I have to show up to campaign for the local dogcatcher.”
Now, besides all of the evidence–and Bill Clinton’s ginormous ego–what else makes me think that Bill Clinton Michael Claytoned the Obama Administration? Well, because it’s something that I would do. Being the vindictive beyotch that I am (yes, I know that it’s a bad quality and I’m working on it–you all can pray for me if you’d like), if I was put in the exact same position that Bill Clinton was put in, I would smile sweetly and bat my eyes at Rahm Emanuel, tell him that I would love to help him using my best Southern belle drawl, and then would proceed to kneecap that SOB by giving my buddy the heads up and telling him to run anyway. (I believe that revenge is a dish best served cold–and, I bet that Bill Clinton does as well.) Moreover, this could also explain why President Clinton was running away from some random blogger yesterday when asked about this, instead of getting in his face and telling him to “piss off”–something that Mr. Clinton has never shied away from doing in the past (just ask Chris Wallace). (See embed below–H/T Allahpundit of Hot Air.)
And finally, I think that the the spectacle of Bill Clinton kneecapping Obama is what the Obama Administration is really afraid of people finding out about. That would totally explain why they’ve been so evasive and antsy about something that could easily be made to look like small potatoes by a group of highly skilled White House lawyers. (Not to mention, it could also explain why they were so quick to throw Bill Clinton under the bus.) They figure that people knowing about them offering Joe Sestak a job might undercut their message a bit, but at the end of the day, everyone already knows that Obama’s just a typical Chicago politician. (Yawn–I’m bored already.) However, if it were proven to be true that Bill Clinton has so little respect for Barack Obama that he would blatantly Michael Clayton him in favor of his buddy–well, that would be one huge humiliation sandwich that would choke the life out of the Obama administration. Why? Simply put–it would make them look weak. In a nutshell, I think that the Obama Administration’s greatest fear is Bill Clinton saying the following under oath about helping out Joe Sestak, when he was supposed to be doing Barack Obama and Rahm Emanuel a favor—
(In my best Clinton impersonation voice….)
“First of all, it depends on what the meaning of the word “favor” is. Second of all, I said that I would do “a favor”–I just never specified for whom. I think that I performed a huge favor for my buddy, Joe Sestak, and for the good people of Pennsylvania by getting rid of that opportunistic hack, Arlen Specter.”
A couple of days ago, Peggy Noonan wrote a column titled, “He Was Supposed to Be Competent” where she wrote the following with regard to Barack Obama’s relationship with the Democrats (H/T Ed Morrissey of Hot Air and Jeff Emanuel)—
“What continues to fascinate me is Mr. Obama’s standing with Democrats. They don’t love him. Half the party voted for Hillary Clinton, and her people have never fully reconciled themselves to him. But he is what they have. They are invested in him. In time—after the 2010 elections go badly—they are going to start to peel off. The political operative James Carville, the most vocal and influential of the president’s Gulf critics, signaled to Democrats this week that they can start to peel off. He did it through the passion of his denunciations.”
Here is the embed of James Carville signaling to Democrats that it’s OK to “peel off”–
Now, what I would like to know is who signaled to James Carville that it was OK for him to “peel off”? I’m not a betting woman, but I would bet dollars to donuts that it was Bill Clinton. Remember, Carville has always worked for Bill Clinton–not the other way around.
So, in conclusion, if my theory is correct (and the evidence sure as heck makes it look like I’m correct), this story could be a lot bigger than any of us originally thought. Instead of it being about the Obama administration offering some congressman a job to get out of a Senate primary race (which they seem to have done before, by the way), this story could actually be about Bill Clinton totally dissing/kneecapping/Michael Claytoning the Obama administration–and, about the Democrats, themselves, starting to peel away from Obama. (Remember, the Democrats in PA voted for Joe Sestak, instead of Arlen Specter–Obama’s chosen candidate). Now, I realize that “dissing” and “kneecapping” are strong words, but if the Lanvin sneaker fits, well…..
Hey, I’m only following the evidence–which is something that the MSM simply refuses to do.
PS–By the way, I think that conservatives should reclaim the movie “Michael Clayton”. I realize that it’s been labeled a “left-leaning film”, but I think that’s bullocks. Since when are conservatives in favor of corporations that make deadly weed-killers? And besides, at the end of the movie, the title character does the right thing by taking personal responsibility and standing up to corrupt trial lawyers. Sounds like a conservative movie to me.