Beinart Gushes Over ‘Brilliant’ Hillary for Taking Secretary of State Post; People ‘Didn’t See’ Her ‘Wisdom’

In the early moments of CNN’s Super Tuesday 2 coverage, Atlantic contributing editor and CNN political commentator Peter Beinart encouraged viewers to consider “how brilliant was Hillary Clinton” to accept President Obama’s offer to become his secretary of state and “politically de facto his vice president” even though “[a] lot of people at the time didn't see” this so-called “wisdom.”

Not long before a commercial break, Beinart chimed in to exclaim: “If you think about it, how brilliant was Hillary Clinton. Let’s go back to becoming Obama's Secretary of State. Let’s think about it now. She is running as the inheritor of Obama legacy.”

Beinart mentioned how bitter the 2008 Democratic presidential primary was and argued that few would have predicted Clinton embracing the Obama administration’s policies so closely. 

With that in mind, he opined that too many of the Americans were unable to recognize Clinton’s brilliance: 

A lot of people at the time didn't see the wisdom of her becoming secretary of state, but it turns out, she became politically de facto his vice president and given the fact that Obama is so popular among core base Democratic groups, that has set her up to run as successor which is the reason she's beating Bernie Sanders. 

Trump supporter Kayleigh McEnany set aside her almost exclusive hyping of Trump to immediately repudiate Beinart’s acclaim for Clinton by alluding to the current President’s unpopularity across the general elecorate:

[I]t might be brilliant now, it's worth asking whether that's brilliant move for the general election because there are a lot of voters in the general electorate who are very upset at Obama, a lot of voters in these particular blue collar communities where one in five young men are still trying to find jobs, they’re unemployed, there's that poll a few months ago that nearly 90 percent of electorate fears there's another terrorist attack, so there's a real question there whether embedding yourself in the Obama administration [works].

The relevant portion of the transcript from CNN’s The Situation Room on March 8 can be found below.

CNN’s The Situation Room
March 8, 2016
5:42 p.m. Eastern

PETER BEINART: If you think about it, how brilliant was Hillary Clinton. Let’s go back to becoming Obama's Secretary of State. Let’s think about it now. She is running as the inheritor of Obama legacy. If you would ask people how well she'd able to do that, at the end of 2008, even how bitter that campaign was, given that Obama was running, in some ways against her husband’s legacy, you would have said, no, no, she can't be that person. A lot of people at the time didn't see the wisdom of her becoming secretary of state, but it turns out, she became politically de facto his vice president and given the fact that Obama is so popular among core base Democratic groups, that has set her up to run as successor which is the reason she's beating Bernie Sanders. 

KAYLEIGH MCENANY: And it might be brilliant now, it's worth asking whether that's brilliant move for the general election because there are a lot of voters in the general electorate who are very upset at Obama, a lot of voters in these particular blue collar communities where one in five young men are still trying to find jobs, they’re unemployed, there's that poll a few months ago that nearly 90 percent of electorate fears there's another terrorist attack, so there's a real question there whether embedding yourself in the Obama administration —

BEINART: I think that's — I think — if this was 1992 or 1972, and that kind of electorate, yes, but given the fact that electorate has become so much more African-American, so much more Latino, Asian and young, trying to replicate the Obama coalition, there are not that many Reagan Democrats left. That's the reality.

Curtis Houck
Curtis Houck
Curtis Houck is the Managing Editor of NewsBusters for the Media Research Center