A Bill and Hill year: why Clintons are Americans' favorite politicians
A recent poll showed that Hillary and Bill Clinton are the most popular politicians in America. How did America's top political couple come to have such high-flying ratings?
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So why doesn't America have Clinton fatigue?Skip to next paragraph
In Pictures Hillary 2016: Will she or won't she?
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In Secretary Clinton’s case, Americans appear to admire her work ethic and her ability to reinvent herself – and not just to make do with the hand dealt her, but to employ it with a flourish.
In announcing Clinton’s imminent return after being hospitalized for a blood clot, State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said that the secretary is “raring to go.” It may have sounded corny, but it also rang true. Anyone who kept a close eye on Clinton’s daily calendar over the past four years could not help but believe it.
It also sounded right when Ms. Nuland added that Clinton remained “committed to testifying” to Congress on the Benghazi attack, which occurred on her watch and cost the lives of four Americans, including the US ambassador to Libya, Christopher Stevens.
And then there is the matter of personal reinvention.
When Secretary Clinton emerged Wednesday from a New York hospital, husband and daughter Chelsea at her side, she smiled behind dark glasses – the same dark glasses, it seems, as the ones she wore in the now-famous photo of her on a military plane looking over her BlackBerry. It was a reminder of the considerable distance traveled from the frumpy pantsuits of her unsuccessful 2008 presidential campaign to the “cool Hillary” of 2012 Internet memes.
More substantial, is how she picked herself up from the 2008 defeat and effectively – and cheerfully – put herself at the service of the man who dealt her that blow, in the role of the nation’s top diplomat.
As she visited (and in some cases revisited) the world’s emerging democracies, Clinton must have told a thousand times the story of how, after battling and then losing to then-Senator Obama, she now worked for him – and how overcoming political rivalries for the national good was an essential ingredient of a successful democracy.
That ability to turn her largest political defeat into an asset – the lemons-to-lemonade analogy, to use an old phrase – may be the trait that impresses one most about Clinton.