The woman who ran Hillary Clinton’s communications during the 2016 presidential election compares the campaign to a “Batman” movie, in a new book.
In a Time.com installment on Wednesday of Jennifer Palmieri’s “Dear Madam President: An Open Letter to the Women Who Will Run the World,” the former communications director describes how she, Clinton, Sen. Tim Kaine and his wife “laughed over the absurdities we encountered in the campaign, talking on our bus one morning in Harrisburg, Pa. I told them the campaign felt like a Batman-movie version of a presidential campaign — Christopher Nolan-style.”
Palmieri describes Donald Trump as “our lead villain” but who “had help from side characters like Putin and Assange.” She writes that then-FBI Director James Comey was “like Catwoman” because he was “sometimes on our side, sometimes not.”
Palmieri, like Clinton, constantly declares sexism to be the underlying reason her boss couldn’t defeat Trump, “an unconscious but pervasive gender bias that held Hillary back in many ways.” After Clinton delivered her much-delayed concession speech, Palmieri relates that many people approached her to say that they wondered why Hillary hadn’t spoken like this during the campaign. “Yes, I am sure you loved her concession speech, I thought to myself. Because that’s what you think is acceptable for a woman to do — concede.”
Because “a large part of this country seemed to believe Hillary represented an existential threat to the proper order of things,” Palmieri “feared there was going to be some violence before the election.”
Of course, the author couldn’t ignore Clinton’s email scandal — which Palmieri seems to think was just another one of those “storms to weather” that the long-suffering former first lady had to endure.
Palmieri writes, “…on Oct. 28, 2016, when the news broke that the FBI was reopening the Clinton email investigation. We were flying to Iowa when we learned of the news. Robby Mook, Nick Merrill, and I approached Hillary on the plane, preparing to tell her of the shocking development.”
Palmieri writes that she said to Clinton, “I have something to tell you.” Clinton “cheerfully” asks her what it is. Palmieri replies that “it’s bad. Really bad.”
Clinton steadied herself for the negative report by “turning serious and folding her hands to brace herself for what was coming.” When she hears that Comey is after her again, Clinton inquires of her staffers, “You knew we weren’t done, didn’t you?”
Palmieri returns to her apparent affinity for film with her comments about the day after the election loss:
“It felt like a movie scene you would never see. The scene where you don’t defuse the bomb just in time. The scene where the world explodes.”