There are few gray areas when it comes to how people feel about Bill and Hillary Clinton. But love them or hate them, what can be said about them is that they are consummate politicians. They know how the game is played, and they play it well.
With Hillary already at the top of the 2016 Democratic presidential candidate list, a recent book out, written by Amie Parnes of “The Hill”, and Jonathan Allen of Politico called, “HRC: State Secrets and the rebirth of Hillary Clinton”, the story goes, that the Clintons, or those that remain loyal soldiers since the 2008 campaign, have kept a list of who has been naughty and who has been nice. The alleged list is a who’s who of former and current Congressmen and Senators. Names that former Secretary of State Clinton thought would be guaranteed endorsements in ’08, but in fact, were not.
Locally, in Missouri, the name that seems to be front and center on the naughty list is none other than Senator Claire McCaskill. Although she shares a spot on the list with names like current Secretary of State John Kerry, Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy, and even the late Ted Kennedy, the book alleges that, “hate is too weak a word to describe the feelings that Hillary’s core loyalists still have for McCaskill”.
According to Parnes and Allen, when McCaskill made her first run for Senate in 2006, the Clintons were her number one cheerleaders. But when it came time for Claire to return the favors, all of the rules went right out of her head. During a debate on NBC’s “Meet the Press” in October of ‘06 against then Senator Jim Talent, host Tim Russert asked McCaskill if she thought Clinton had been a great president. McCaskill answered, “He’s been a great leader, but I don’t want my daughter near him.”
Apparently for Bill and Hill, all bets were off at that point. Knowing she had made a serious mistake, McCaskill offered up apologies to the Clintons, but it seemed to be too late by then. Hillary cancelled a fundraiser that had been planned for McCaskill. The final straw for Hillary Clinton seemed to be that, not only had McCaskill ultimately threw her support behind then Senator Barack Obama, she made the case to the Obama people that her support would send and even louder message if then Governors Kathleen Sebelius and Janet Napolitano would endorse Obama at the same time.
The rest, as they say, is history. McCaskill is not up for re-election until 2018, so she may have a few years of relative safety. If Hillary Clinton is victorious in 2016 however, life on Capitol Hill could be just a tad bumpy for Claire bear.