Carol Platt Liebau: Back in the High Life . . .

Friday, February 22, 2008

Back in the High Life . . .

If Hillary Clinton were going to be the Democratic nominee for President -- a circumstance that looks more unlikely with every passing day -- issues like this would deservedly take center stage.

According to the linked report, the Clintonistas have spent donor money like water, enjoying nights at the Four Seasons, $100,000 party trays, and so much, much more.

First, if Hillary's campaign management skills are emblematic of the management skills she'd bring to The White House, it's no doubt a blessing that it's not looking like she's going to get there. The spending and management seems like what we might expect from people who have never had to worry about the kind of expense management that's expected in most parts of the private sector. And if the Clinton people are so free-spending with donor-raised money that the candidate has to work for, just think of how they'd treat taxpayer money!

Second, it strikes me as entirely fair for her donors to be outraged. No doubt, as the article points out, the Hillary people expected that the money would simply continue to flow in and so their outrageous spending wouldn't matter. But that doesn't excuse their profligacy.

Hillary has solicited money from people of even modest means, who have probably been asked to send what they can "spare" so that she may run for President of the United States. When she and her staffers live like pashas on those peoples' dimes, it's not just unseemly -- it's wrong.

When I worked on the Bond and Ashcroft campaigns, it was always made very clear even to senior campaign staff that expenses were to be carefully watched -- not just because it's hard to raise money, but because that money wasn't really ours . .. it had been donated by people who had worked hard for it in order to advance a specific cause, ie., the election of a candidate.


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