The Hillary 2012 Meme
Peter Roff, an influential, under-the-radar conservative pundit, has made the most put-together argument I’ve seen for something you’ll hear more conservatives talk about: a 2012 primary challenge to President Obama from Hillary Clinton. The sourcing is ingeniously specious: “The ongoing decline in the president’s approval ratings has more than a few Democrats concerned,” and “chatter has increased in recent days about Clinton leaving the cabinet sometime in the first term, likely over some matter of principle, so that she can position herself to challenge Obama in 2012.” Chatter from who? It doesn’t matter! It led the front page of Drudge for 12 hours!
I don’t think you can overstate the conservative obsession with the Clintons — not even now that President Obama has become just as edifying an opponent. In 2007, I wrote this piece on how conservatives were betting that Hillary Clinton’s unpopularity would save them in 2008. And now there’s some betting that Clinton’s ambition will bloody the Democrats enough to save the GOP in 2012. It’s baseless, but I don’t expect it to fade for at least two years.