More On Bubba
Ezra Klein hits on something here about Bill Clinton's attack-dog tactics against Barack Obama. He's been far, far more uncompromising about Obama than he's ever been to George W. Bush.
But even as he's got that right, he's also got a responsibility to the millions of Democrats -- and Americans -- who worked on his campaigns and fought in his battles, who sacrificed and toiled so he could have this place in our polity, and who expected he would use it to push for progressivism, not just for his family. It's not that I don't understand, and on some level admire, Clinton's ferocious advocacy for his wife. But he's got to balance that with his responsibility to the rest of us. Over the past seven years, Clinton has largely checked his criticisms of Bush and bit his tongue in order to retain his role as a statesman. Throwing that restraint out the window in a Democratic primary will do enormous damage to his reputation.
I'm not one to tell Bill Clinton to shut up; it's a free country and the rules binding Presidents are merely advisory. But the fact that he reserves his greatest anger for when he or his family are involved, rather than when his legacy and the struggle of the millions who voted for him are at stake, is very revealing.
UPDATE: Howard Wolfson calling any criticism of Bill Clinton a right-wing talking point is puzzling. Lying about Obama's statements is a right-wing talking point? Does someone want to explain that?