At the CNN Democratic debate Sunday night, Bernie Sanders once again brought up the speeches Hillary Clinton made to Wall Street banks for which she was paid exorbitant amounts of money.
“One of us has given speeches on Wall Street for hundreds of thousands of dollars,” Sanders said. “Now, I kind of think if you get paid a couple hundred thousand dollars for a speech, it must be a great speech. I think we should release it and let the American people see what that transcript was.”
Clinton fell back on her go-to line. “And I have said and I will say again, I will be happy to release anything I have as long as everybody else does too,” Clinton said.
Clinton has been heavily criticized for this posture, even by media outlets that would normally defend her at all costs. In a February 25 editorial, The New York Times said:
“Everybody does it,” is an excuse expected from a mischievous child, not a presidential candidate. But that is Hillary Clinton’s latest defense for making closed-door, richly paid speeches to big banks, which many middle-class Americans still blame for their economic pain, and then refusing to release the transcripts.
This is such a silly controversy, and it’s the kind of thing you could only see in a Democratic Party debate. Clinton is so terrified that her base will suddenly wake up and realize that she’s in good with Goldman Sachs and the other major banking establishments. She wants to position herself as this grassroots crusader against Wall Street, Big Oil, and all of the other bogeymen that Democrat voters blame for their troubles. She would rather have Sanders and The New York Times question her integrity than release the speeches and prove conclusively that she has none.
But beyond Clinton’s personal hypocrisy is the larger matter of the whole party’s big lie to the American people. Say what you will, these Democrats know their voters. Last night, it seemed like a cutthroat competition to see which candidate could crucify capitalism in the least amount of time. I hate Wall Street more…no I hate Wall Street more…no I do. It’s perverse how low the pandering can get, but it’s like spoonfed crack to their welfare-addicted voters.
Sanders and Clinton want their voters to believe that if it wasn’t for those evil millionaires and billionaires on Wall Street, their lives would be fantastic and carefree. If it wasn’t for Goldman Sachs, you would have clear drinking water in Flint. If it wasn’t for Republicans giving tax breaks to the rich, you wouldn’t have any student debt. And nevermind that we’ve been under Democratic leadership for seven years – this time, by god, we’re gonna fix things and fix ’em good.
It’s hilarious to watch Hillary pretend like she’s Wall Street’s worst nightmare while funding her campaign with Wall Street cash. But it’s sad that she feels like she has to.