Followers of the political machinations of HBO's Frank and Claire Underwood see the similarities between the fictional presidency and President Obama's.
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo., July 4, 2016 – On June 27 former President Bill Clinton held a supposedly spontaneous 30-minute meeting with Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch on a Phoenix tarmac. A mere five days later, on July 2, his wife, Hillary Clinton, presumptive Democratic candidate for president, was interviewed by Lynch’s investigative arm, the FBI.
As the attorney general, Lynch heads the Department of Justice who is deciding whether to proceed with charges against the Democratic presidential nominee over her use of a private email server during her tenure as President Obama’s secretary of state.
Was the timing of the two meetings coincidence or, as Clinton opponents surmise, something more sinister? Speculation by Democratic and Republican sources alike has run the gamut, although no one has yet been cynical enough to question the bigger picture: the 2016 election for office of the presidency.
Accepting that rather obvious premise, it is not a stretch to observe that not only does the president not want any Republican, never mind the upstart Donald Trump, to succeed him, he also would prefer a close friend and a standard bearer of his legacy. By any measure, going back to the contentious Democratic primaries of 2008, Hillary Clinton, his own secretary of state, would not be his first choice.
The wily and clever politician Obama keeps his friends close and his enemies closer. That phrase quite accurately may sum up his recruitment of Clinton to serve in his cabinet. It also means he must maintain a studied, careful support as Clinton campaigns to replace him. In the face of his own Justice Department’s investigation and potential indictment of Clinton, Obama chose to proclaim in a carefully crafted video his undying support for his secretary of state.
Conspiracy theorists, draw close as we dive deeply and cynically into a “House of Cards” scenario:
Clinton has proven to be a shrill and unpopular candidate, unable to cleanly defeat even an old socialist from Vermont. Even “Saturday Night Live” has tagged onto her pantsuit duplicity as week after week, its sketches dare to go where no liberal humorists ever have dared to go before. The satire is thick, often accurate and likely deeply troubling for her supporters.
Clearly, there are no white Grecian columns in the woman’s future. At best, there may be a victory eked out against the brusque capitalist, Trump.
If she does manage that, what then? Whither goest Barack Obama?
The Clinton Machine would remain intact, having snatched another victory from the jaws of defeat. That means the Clinton world agenda and its concomitant generous donations would remain the standard bearer of do-good-ist liberalism.
That leaves speeches and a few crumbs for the former president, Obama. There will be the obligatory board memberships, honorary degrees, international goings on, but always, always, Obama will be greeted at airports by the Clintons, who have arrived there first.
But what if, conspiracy people, Obama is a Machiavellian schemer on a par with Kevin Spacey’s Frank Underwood character in “House of Cards,” that popular dark political television thriller?
In classic Underwood fashion, Obama’s support for Mrs. Clinton first must be proclaimed loudly and clearly throughout the country. With his video and frequent remarks, consider that box well and transparently checked.
Underwood fans know that many of his most malevolent schemes have played off opportunities laid at his ambitious feet by mistakes made by weaker men. Clinton, in true tele-drama fashion, has foolishly shown such vulnerability, ironically deriving from her own penchant for ridiculously extreme secrecy.
The result? As everyone has known for months, a potential indictment by the Justice Department resulting from various malfeasances including the uncomfortable juxtapositions of favors granted to certain foreign countries just after those countries’ significant donations to her husband’s so-called independent Clinton Global Initiative.
Ditto, Wall Street banks and large corporations who paid nearly $21.6 million in just two years for some 92 of her apparently super-mellifluous speeches.
Sorry, $21.6 million?!
As well, Mrs. Clinton’s safeguarding of her yoga dates and daughter’s wedding plans vouchsafed Russia’s, China’s and any old free-lance hackers the pleasure of a romp through the highest of state secrets.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see her vulnerability vis-a-vis the FBI and the law.
With the many analyses of Bill Clinton’s ill-timed meeting with the attorney general, no one so far has taken the next obvious step. This outrageous meeting, its timing, the unlikely source that tipped off a local news reporter, and the meeting’s aftermath and very public denouement, virtually guarantee an eventual public outcry for the attorney general to recuse herself from the investigation.
Although to date the attorney general has not seen fit to step away from the case, should she do that, it will mean the entire political Obama machine also has stepped away from any future indictment. Naturally, all ensuing actions will be in the interest of truth, justice and the American way.
What would happen next? What if the Justice Department grows a pair and finally moves to indict the lady in pastel pantsuits, thereby plunging her golden candidacy into the gutter?
There would be presidential hand-wringing, of course. There would be repeated avowals of her many wonderful leadership qualities. But at that point, there also would be nothing further the chief executive would be able to do. It would then be in the hands of the non- political lawyers to resolve.
At that point, there would be no presidential connection to Hillary’s tragic fall from grace. She and her husband, through his ill-timed rendezvous, would have killed themselves off. There would be a more acceptable Joe Biden on the ascendant, as well as a resurrection of honor to the Democratic party. President
Obama would get the man he wanted all along delivered up with no traces of his own machinations.
The Clinton Global Initiative would be the next shoe to fall, after the Hillary trials. The Clinton brand would be out the door, the Democrats would regain the White House and former president Obama would go on to fulfill his rightful role as presumptive leader of his party and in fact, the world. He would travel around on his magic carpet and his speeches, like those of the Clintons before him, would rake in big bucks.
With a Biden presidency continuing the Obama legacy, honors would continue to pile up, guaranteed by a third term by good old Joe, the president’s loyal friend.
And, the best part of all this, folks? No presidential paw prints.
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