Thursday, September 15, 2016

Circling the wagons at the DNC, again

The word is out that Hilary Clinton has caught pneumonia. This is a perfect explanation for her coughing fits of late on the campaign trail. I know what it's like, I've had walking pneumonia myself.

But this story doesn't explain the way she collapsed while entering a van on Sunday, September 11th. More than a few accounts of Clinton's health history have expressed concern that her stumbles to the van have more to do with a head injury she sustained a few years ago than pneumonia or overheating as her PR team would like us to believe.

Here is an analysis from Gary Byrne, a former Secret Service agent who served on her security detail when she was First Lady:
So what did we hear after? At first it was that she overheated and dehydrated. Now it’s pneumonia. Before, videos of her similar spastic bizarre movement were blamed on allergies and other excuses. Clearly, the totality of her prior blood clots and deep vein thrombosis, along with her concussion and related broken elbow, tell a different story.
Here’s what was very disturbing to me: after the medical episode, she went to her daughter’s apartment and not to an Emergency Room. Secret Service procedure for each detail dictates that everyone knows which hospital to go to depending on the event - heart failure, gunshot, you name it. It is very revealing that, whatever is wrong with her, she is being treated by her own private medical specialists in secret and, judging by the ballet-like reaction by her detail, they have dealt with this before. 
The Washington Post is reporting that that she may not recover from pneumonia until late October. That would effectively end a campaign for anyone else, but not Hillary. Still, the Los Angeles Times is reporting that "Kaine [is] 'ready to become president' if necessary, says former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland". In the LA Times article, Kaine is reported to have dismissed Clinton's health issues and thinks that the campaign will be back on track soon.

Across the pond, The Guardian is reporting that "Voters doubt Clinton's pneumonia explanation, poll shows". Hillary Clinton is one of the most distrusted politicians to run for president and that YouGov poll is telling. Given what we know now, I think it's highly plausible that pneumonia is not the only cause for concern with regard to Clinton's health and a poll of voters seems to agree. I wonder which story they will finally settle on.

In the past few days, numerous articles have appeared to run through the question of what will happen if Hillary Clinton drops out. Sanders activists have expressed fervent hopes that if Hillary drops out of the race, that Sanders could and would resume his campaign. They are citing chapter and verse of the DNC rules. They understand that when Sanders declared Clinton as the nominee, he suspended the rules and kept all of his delegates. They have also pointed out that if Hillary drops out, the DNC must reinstate the candidate with the next highest count of delegates. That person would be Bernie Sanders.

Analysis has been carried out to contemplate what would happen if Hillary won in November, but she could not, for some reason, make it to the inauguration. Then the duty would fall to Tim Kaine, vice presidential running mate with Hillary. There has been some speculation that Joe Biden would be inserted into the campaign if Hillary were to drop out. I don't see how Biden could suddenly jump in and run since, as far as I know, he's not registered in any state to run for president and all the deadlines have passed for this year. I'm sure there would be vigorous resistance if the DNC were to try to pull that off.

In the mainstream press, it's anybody but Sanders. In the alternative press, it's Sanders if Hillary's campaign should somehow...expire. One thing I do know for sure is that if Hillary decided to drop out, with Sanders to re-enter the campaign, he would almost certainly trounce Trump in November given his broad popularity. Whether or not he would actually run under such a circumstance is still a great unknown.

There is a clear undertow in polling for Clinton, too, even in a 4-way race, as shown by Real Clear Politics:

This is just one more drop in a long, inexorable slide over the last few months. There was a bit of a bump after the coronation, but as usual, Clinton cannot sustain a lead. When she falls behind, she won't recover, not even against someone who is quite possibly the worst Republican candidate ever.

If Clinton loses, don't blame me. I voted for Sanders in the primaries. If Sanders does not re-emerge, I will be voting for Jill Stein. I can't think of a better plan at the moment.
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