For over a year now, all the news casts, the political pundits and junkies, the consultants, every talking head on the planet as well as rank-and-file Americans have stated as a fact that Hillary Clinton will be the Democratic nominee for president in 2016. Everyone, it seems, agrees her coronation is inevitable.
I must respectfully disagree. While the presumption appears to be on target, there are some factors that must be weighed.
Looking back to 2008, for more than a year all the buzz was how that Hillary would be the nominee. Out of nowhere came this inexperienced, Junior Senator from the State of Illinois. A man who had appeared from the same realm of anonymity at the Democratic Convention in 2004 when a speech turned the party spotlight on him as a rising star.
This relative unknown trashed conventional wisdom, denied the vast political powerhouse machine a victory. Barack Obama, with flowery words and charisma, “stole” the lightning bolt from Zeus as Olympus was shaken to its core.
Are we seeing a repeat in 2015?
Look at the independent Senator from the great State of Vermont. An unabashed, self-proclaimed socialist, far to the left of the more centrist Clinton. The numbers flocking to his campaign rallies are staggering and rivaling those of a certain Congressman from Texas in 2012.
Yes, Bernie Sanders is too far out there for not only the majority of Americans, but also most Democrats. He is to the left a thorn in the side as Ron Paul was a thorn in the side of Republicans. Paul’s followers made inroads into the party establishment, but those who grabbed state party control have now been assimilated.
Sanders does have his own set of problems. The biggest coming from the very vocal #BlackLivesMatter movement. Still, Sanders is showing that the inevitability of a Clinton nomination is not set in stone.
Then there is the problem with the credibility factor for Hillary.
Those heady days of popularity she enjoyed as Secretary of State are long gone. The FBI investigation into her use of a private email server is causing renewed concern about whether she can be trusted and whether she thinks she is above the rules by which others must play.
Her credibility and favorable numbers keep getting lower and lower. Her appeal to the masses and to those in the Democratic Party is turning green much like copper.
Clinton is finding out being a woman is not enough.
Add to all this is her lack of detail and avoiding questions she refuses to answer. What is emerging is a self-implosion.
Hillary is already getting push back from a core of the Democrats – environmentalists. This has led to her abandoning her private jets for more ecologically friendly modes of transportation to reach campaign events. But, instead of a positive, it makes her look both hypocritical and caving to a special interest when the water became too hot.
Neither Jim Webb nor Martin O’Malley are presenting any trouble for Clinton at this point. Webb could if he actually starts running for office beyond making the announcement. O’Malley has the baggage as Mayor of Baltimore which is and will weigh him down.
There is all the talk about whether Vice President Joe Biden, smelling blood in the water, will jump into the pool as the sharks circle Clinton. He may. We expect to know this week. But – Biden won’t be the one to sink the Hillary yacht.
There are game changers out there.
Most notably, if New York Governor Andrew Cuomo should decide to do a high dive with a triple somersault, he would rise back to the surface with a standing ovation in the stands.
Democrats are not 100% sold on Hillary.
No, the coronation of Hillary Clinton is not assured.
From the Desert with my feet planted firmly in the Cornfield, as I look through the stalks ready for harvest and the cacti with their prickly spines, it is clear that Democrats are still holding out for a heroine or a hero – and it is not, Hillary.