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Mark Steyn On Hillary Clinton’s Mitt Romney Problem, And Obama’s Boredom Problem

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HH: The Supreme Court slaps down President Obama. The U.S. loses to Germany but wins anyway. I don’t understand soccer. Neither did Rush earlier today, and I don’t pretend to. I’ll be joined by Mitch McConnell, the governor of Ohio, John Kasich, the attorney general of Texas, Greg Abbott will be here to debate whether or not the GOP convention should be in Cleveland or Dallas, and the Hillsdale hour on Erasmus is going to actually be today as opposed to tomorrow, because we’ll be at Disneyland tomorrow. So the Hillsdale Dialogue occurs in hour number three today on the subject of Erasmus. A friend of Hillsdale joins me, Mark Steyn, who is frequently up there. Mark, in fact, this summer, I have an intern Jack Butler, who introduced you at Hillsdale a year ago, I believe.

MS: Yeah, he got big laughs. That was a disaster of an intro, because I just couldn’t match him. He was getting these big laughs in the intro. It was like when John Kerry would be introduced by Ted Kennedy or Jeanne Shaheen, and they’d be getting big laughs, and then John Kerry would come on, and the whole thing would die. It was the same thing with me. He was too good an intro.

HH: Would you like me to fire him?

MS: Yes. I came off that stage furious. I said that guy, Jack Butler, he’s never going to work again.

HH: Okay, well, out of here, Butler.

MS: And I’m horrified to find you’ve hired him.

HH: Speaking about, he’ll be bumped, though. He’ll be out of work. I have to consider this in the context of the first quote I want to play for you. This is a little montage of Hillary and Bill on the dangers of being a public servant in the age of pennilessness. Cut number one:

HRC: You have no reason to remember, but we came out of the White House not only dead broke, but in debt. And we struggled to piece together the resources for mortgages, for houses, for Chelsea’s education. You know, it was not easy.

WJC: I think I had the lowest net worth of any American president in the 20th Century when I took office. But I still could have been tone deaf. And you know, now I don’t, and we’ve got a good life, and I’m grateful for it. But I still, we go to our local grocery store on the weekend.

HRC: But I don’t need anybody to defend my record. I think my record speaks for itself.

HH: So Mark, I think we’ve been insufficiently solicitous of the financial straits of the Clintons.

MS: Well actually, they made an interesting point there. They went into the White House, as he said, with the lowest net worth of any president ever. And they’ve become hugely, I mean, they’ve become hugely wealthy. Hugely wealthy. When I was down in Australia, I was out at Noosa, on the Queensland Coast, the sunshine coast of Queensland. And we were all meeting up in a restaurant later. I said where’s this restaurant? And they go, well, you go about a quarter of a mile past Bill Clinton’s place, and then you take…and I said wait a minute, what do you mean Bill Clinton’s place? He’s got a place on the sunshine coast in Queensland. That’s where he was on September 11th, 2001, which is, as you know, about eight months after he left office. That’s how broke they were, that eight months later he’s spending 9/11, September 11th, 2001, at his pad on the Queensland coast. And the problem here is it’s a Mitt Romney problem. When Mitt ran, and he, people talked about Bain Capital, a lot of people couldn’t understand what Bain Capital did. You know, he would talk about Staples, but everyone understood he wasn’t the guy who invented Staples. He wasn’t the guy who worked in stationery and office equipment and built up a chain of stores, that somehow Staples had fallen his way, and he turned it around. And people couldn’t quite equate that as work. And I think it’s actually even worse for Hillary Clinton, because she and Bill Clinton are stinkingly rich just from giving $200,000 speeches to rather shady and shifty figures from the United Arab Emirates. That’s basically how they’ve got rich. And I think that’s actually, people don’t mind money, and people don’t mind Bill Gates having a ton of money. People don’t mind Steve Jobs making a ton a money. But this is hard to explain kind of money.

HH: In fact, last night, Hillary was on with Gwen Ifill, two nights ago, and Duane added, substituted, whenever she used the personal pronoun, substituted Mitt Romney. And this is how it sounds, cut number two:

HRC: Let’s say Mitt Romney shouldn’t have said, I think, the five or so words that Mitt Romney said, but you know, Mitt Romney’s inartful use of those few words doesn’t change who Mitt Romney am, what Mitt Romney stood for, for Mitt Romney’s entire life, what Mitt Romney stands for today. Mitt Romney have had terrific opportunities. Mitt Romney, you know, worked hard, but Mitt Romney’s been grateful for everything that Mitt Romney’s been able to achieve.

HH: In other words, Mark, everything she said in her own defense could have been said about Mitt Romney. And of course, no one’s calling her on it in the way that the media drilled down on Romney for being excessively wealthy.

MS: No, and the funny thing is, Mitt appeared as, had a problem in that he could appear as a caricature of a rich guy. But in fact, you know, he’s got a place down in the lakes region of New Hampshire, a couple of hours south of me. And he lives a normal life there, you know, like he takes his trash to the dump, and he goes to the store and all the rest of it. And the problem for Hillary, I mean, it’s interesting to compare Hillary’s explanation of this with Bill’s. Bill is the genius politician in that family. Hillary is some kind of House of Lords beneficiary of heredity. And I do not, and she’s far more awkward at explaining it and talking about it, and then Chelsea is even more so. And I simply don’t think that Bill can transfer his undoubted skills to his wife and bequeath her the presidency. I don’t think he can do it.

HH: Now before we get very serious, I have to ask you about the Supreme Court today, 9-0, smacked down the President again on recess appointments. That makes this DOJ the equivalent of the 1962 Mets. They’ve lost twelve 9-0 decisions. It’s truly unparalleled in badness of litigating. Do you think, and I’ll ask Mitch McConnell this later, do you think he’ll be humbled by this?

MS: No, I don’t think he will be, because I think he understands that you know, you can do quite a lot of this stuff. And he’s throwing it at the wall every minute of the day.

HH: Yup.

MS: This is basically how he governs now. He’s governing not as the president of a genuine republic, but as the president of a Latin American-style republic, where the president matters, and nobody else matters. Everybody else is just a courtier of the president. That’s how Latin American republics are, that’s how it is in Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, that’s how it is in North Korea. The president matters, and nobody else does. And that’s how this guy governs, and he throws quite a lot out there. You know, one minute, he’s suspending immigration law, the next minute he’s deciding that this bit of Obamacare isn’t going to apply for a couple of years. And if all that requires the Supreme Court to rule on it, there’s going to wind up being quite a backlog of stuff there. And I think that’s why he won’t be chastened by this. And I’ll add one other thing, Hugh. It is a slap down, but it’s what I would call a sort of slightly cautious slap down. I mean, they said you can’t call a long weekend a Senate recess.

HH: Right.

MS: You know, a Senate recess can’t be three days. But they’re saying it has to be at least ten days. Now on the face of it, that’s ridiculous. And if they had wanted to deliver a real serious slap down, they would have come in with something that was actually much harder and much more restrictive, and would have required a genuine Senate recess, and a genuine, you know, urgency of appointment, in other words, a vacancy occurred during the recess and some of these other things. But simply saying, in a way saying you can’t regard a long weekend as a Senate recess is, for Obama, I think it’s, that’s the kind of slap down that tells him something about how cautious even a 9-0 decision is.

HH: It’s a start. Watch for Monday in Hobby Lobby. Here is what Vice President Cheney had to say on my show on Tuesday, Mark Steyn. I’d like to get your reaction to it.

HH: Do you think we get through this decade without a massive attack on the homeland?

DC: I doubt it. I doubt it. I think there will be another attack, and the next time, I think it’s likely to be far deadlier than the last one. Imagine what would happen…

HH: Yeah.

DC: …if somebody could smuggle a nuclear device, put it in a shipping container, and drive it down the Beltway outside of Washington, D.C.

HH: Mark Steyn, in the 14 years of this show, I’ve never had a reaction that I had to those 30 seconds. And it’s, to me, obvious. What in the world drove the left crazy about that?

DC: Well, because they believe that the War on Terror is over, that they were bored by it, and Obama said it’s over. He declared it over. And they’re not willing, and that’s actually quite audacious, because it’s the left’s usual thing, that if you simply declare something to be so, reality isn’t allowed to countermand it. And I think in this case, what’s happening in Iraq, what’s happening in Afghanistan, what’s happening in Iran is saying no, this thing is still rumbling on. And they resent having to deal with it. You know what the interesting thing is, this phrase I’ve grown rather tired of, the American people are war weary, which is immensely insulting to the troops. The troops are out there dealing with it. The American people aren’t weary. They just got bored with it, and that’s why they resent this business with Vice President Cheney.

HH: Mark Steyn, always a pleasure,, America, for everything Mark writes.

End of interview.


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