[Ed. – We must have missed something during the switch from equality to equity as the goal for America. When did the ‘party and the former president himself have been forced to admit the failures of his administration’?]
Bill Clinton was a charismatic Southern governor — extraordinarily at ease around nonwhite people and possessing a preternatural social sensibility — who became a remarkable president. He knew how to make people feel positive and hopeful, to make them feel seen and heard.
He was a gifted politician, a once-in-a-generation kind of prodigy, and many liberals adored him for it.
But Clinton’s record, particularly with respect to Black and brown Americans and the poor, was marked by catastrophic miscalculation. It was characterized by tacking toward a presumed middle — “triangulation,” the administration called it — which on some levels, abandoned and betrayed the minority base that so heavily supported him.
Two major pieces of Clinton-signed legislation stand out: The crime bill of 1994 and the welfare reform bill of 1996.
I view the crime bill as disastrous. It flooded the streets with police officers and contributed to the rise of mass incarceration. …