POLIZETTE — The Democratic National Convention’s primary mission — to reduce Hillary Clinton’s sky-high dishonesty perception — appears to be floundering.
The Democratic nominee for president has the luxury of an all-star lineup of political and pop-culture talent to make her case. No one is more talented at talking to the American people in conversational manner than her husband, Bill Clinton. And President Obama is the most gifted politician of his generation in soaring oratory.
Both men were at the top of their game this week. But neither dared address the reckless behavior — or in the words of FBI Director James Comey, “extremely careless” — that fuels doubts about Hillary Clinton in the first place. As secretary of state, Clinton set up private servers in her house and sent and received email containing classified information.
That conduct undermines every increasingly strident attack leveled at Republican Donald Trump this week in Philadelphia.
The email scandal may have irreparably exposed Clinton’s trust problem. It comes on top of clear falsehoods she spun in the wake of a terrorist attack that killed four Americans in Benghazi, Libya, in 2011. Emails show irrefutably that she told one story in private — the true one, involving an organized terrorist attack — and another one in public — a now-discredited narrative that an obscure internet film sparked a spontaneous protest.
For years, Clinton has maintained an arms-length relationship with the truth, grudgingly revealing embarrassing facts only when forced and speaking falsehoods even on trivial matters. During a South Asia goodwill tour, for instance, she claimed to have been named after the explorer Sir Edmund Hillary. But she was born six years before he climbed Mount Everest.