As you might have heard, there are revelations in Hillary Clinton’s new memoir that the Obama campaign asked her to attack Sarah Palin.
“The day [Palin] was nominated, the Obama campaign did contact me and asked me if I would attack her,” Clinton said in an interview with NBC’s Cynthia McFadden … “I said, ‘Attack her for what — for being a woman?
Interestingly, though, this contradicts the line Team Clinton pushed at the time.
“She’s not the answer when it comes to winning conservative women — she never was — and we’re not going to be anybody’s attack dog against Sarah Palin,” said a Clinton insider. “To be fair to Obama’s people, they haven’t asked us to do that.” [Emphasis mine.]
I’m inclined to believe Hillary now. Clearly, the plan was to go after Palin — and who was better equipped to do this dirty work than Hillary? But having just been defeated by Obama, it also stands to reason that Clinton was probably in no mood to be Obama’s hatchet woman. What is more, Bill Clinton, at least, seemed to believe that Palin was a very talented political figure who might have had some real resonance — even among Clinton’s base. At the time, attacking a female vice presidential nominee probably seemed a lot more risky.
Here’s a video of Bill Clinton talking about Palin that, I think, will give you a sense of their calculus: