Hillary Clinton continues to stumble blindly through the maze of political opinions and policy directives, trying to decide which positions will get her elected.
If this sounds like a lousy way to conduct a campaign to become leader of the free world, that’s because it is. Apart from the sheer cynicism of attempting to be all things to all people, there are palpable risks for someone like Clinton who started off left-of-center and has since tacked so far left that she now finds her positions untenable.
A case in point is her stance on victims of rape. Last month she tweeted:
Every survivor of sexual assault deserves to be heard, believed, and supported. https://t.co/mkD69RHeBL
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) November 23, 2015
No one would have a problem with the “heard” part, which is a cornerstone of our system of justice. Every American who claims to have been wronged is entitled to his day in court.
The “believed” part is another story. Under our system of jurisprudence, there is a presumption of innocence until guilt is proven, with the burden of proof falling to the accuser. Clinton, as an attorney, surely knows this on some level.
The position became even dicier for her in New Hampshire on Thursday when a prospective voter in the audience reminded Clinton of her claim that all rape victims should be believed, then asked:
Would you say that about Juanita Broaddrick, Kathleen Willey, and/or Paula Jones?
For those for whom those names fail to resonate, be advised that those three accused a former president respectively of sexual harassment, sexual assault, and rape. The president’s name? Bill Clinton.
The video follows. As you can see, Clinton came up with an answer (“I would say that everybody should be believed at first until they are disbelieved based on evidence”) that satisfied the other people in the audience, who greeted it with polite applause.
But her answer really reflects the vapidity of her claim about rape victims. If everyone is to believed until evidence is furnished that casts doubt on their grievance, then the argument in her tweet is meaningless.
It will be interesting to see if she is able to cobble together a better response to this glaring inconsistency before the general election or whether she will simply deny saying what she is on record as having said.