Collection of Articles About Hillary Clinton and the 2016 Election

A categorized listing (with brief descriptions and some relevant pull-quotes) of articles I’ve read and shared (and one I wrote) regarding the 2016 election. Last updated on August 10th, 2016. (In no particular order)

***(Starred articles indicate my particular favorites — chosen for their insight, design, depth, and rhetorical value)


  • Overviews of Hillary Clinton’s Life and Record
  • The Image vs. The Reality of Hillary Clinton
  • Rebuttals to Common Criticisms of Hillary Clinton
  • The Primary Wasn’t Rigged
  • Hillary Clinton is Honest
  • Hillary Clinton is Enthusiastically Admired (more coming soon)
  • Hillary Clinton and Foreign Policy (coming soon)
  • Sexism and Hillary Clinton (more coming soon)
  • Sexism and Women in Power (coming soon)
  • Fun for Hillary Supporters (coming soon)

All the Links Described Below:

Overviews of Hillary Clinton’s Life and Record

1. The Quick Startup Guide to Hillary

Written by Brendan Steidle, this article offers a brief overview of Hillary Clinton’s life and record. Steidle describes himself as a “millennial who didn’t vote for Hillary in 2008.” In the 2016 election, he took a second look at Hillary and discovered that there was a lot about the woman that he didn’t know. Written during the primaries, the article takes a moment to compare her general style against that of Senator Bernie Sanders.

The biggest difference between her and so many others in politics today? One that was there from the beginning: a “willingness to participate in the drudgery of government rather than simply direct policy from Olympian heights,” Bernstein explained. “She attended committee meetings, became involved in the minutiae (of finding a better system for the return of library books, for instance), and studied every aspect of the Wellesley curriculum in developing a successful plan to reduce the number of required courses.”
As a fellow student said of her at the time: “she was more interested in the process of achieving victory than in taking a philosophical position that could not lead anywhere.”

The Image vs The Reality of Hillary Clinton:

1. I Was One of the Most Ardent Hillary Haters on the Planet…Until I Read Her Emails

Originally written under a pseudonym, now known to be written by Karoli Kuns, managing editor of Kuns was a fierce Obama supporter in 2008 and ardently hated Hillary. Then she read her emails and found a Hillary quite different from the impression she had had.

In those emails, I also found a woman who seemed to understand power and how to use it wisely. A woman of formidable intellect who actually understood the nuances of a thing, and how to strike a tough bargain.
I read every single one of the emails released in August, and what I found was someone who actually gave a damn about the country, the Democratic party, and all of our futures.

2. Understanding Hillary: Why the Clinton America Sees the Isn’t the Clinton Colleagues Know***

This is Ezra Klein’s attempt to understand why personal accounts of Hillary Clinton diverge so greatly from the public narrative that has built up around her. He focuses on how a great strength of hers — the fact that she listens to people — has been reframed as a weakness. He addresses sexism, and how listening to the wrong people can get a person into trouble, and Clinton’s distrust of the media. He details several stories of people with concerns coming to Clinton and Clinton using her considerably political clout to help and get things done. He also details some of the more unlikely alliances that have arisen due to her willingness to listen. It features clips of Klein’s interview with Clinton.

In each case, Clinton is contacted by somebody who’s smart and credible but doesn’t have a ton of political clout. In each case, the message is that the policy her husband is either administering or making is flawed in some very technical way. And rather than ignore that message, or become defensive about it, she listens. She dives into the details — details that would numb many professional policy staffers, to say nothing of most politicians.
Two things spring from this pattern. The first is change. Clinton is good at getting things done. The second is relationships. People who are on the other side of Clinton’s focus — who know how rare it is for a major politician to take a deep interest in their wonkish obsessions — find themselves unusually enamored of Clinton.

3. The Hillary Clinton I Know

Written by Mike Lux, a progressive who worked in Bill Clinton’s administration. Lux details the ways that he has known Hillary Clinton to be progressive, while realistically recognizing that there will be more conservative forces also vying for influence should she make it to the White House.

Hillary Clinton gets a lot of blame for the Clinton era policies progressives don’t like, but what people don’t understand is that she was the leading advocate for progressive policies in Bill Clinton’s administration. As the main person working with progressive groups to push things in a more progressive direction, Hillary was the one I would go to help me fight those battles, and she consistently went to bat for me.

4. Belief, Hatred, and the Democratic Party

This article, by little-known blogger Jesse MacKinnon, thoroughly details some of the infighting that has been happening among progressives. He begins by evaluating how certain concepts take hold in our collective culture — whether they are based on facts or not (ex: Grant as a drunk or Hillary as a liar). He evaluates some of the persistent myths among the “Bernie or Bust” crowd and details some of the pointed hatred coming from that camp.

Almost a year ago I was talking with a former student of mine and I was starting to talk about the most recent book I had read, a biography-cum-historiography of Ulysses S Grant, written by my old advisor at UCLA. But I had scarcely gotten a sentence out when another friend in the room blurted out:
“He was a drunk.”
It’s ironic that they said that. One of the major points of this thoroughly researched book is that tales of Grant’s alcoholism were wildly exaggerated. Indeed, we can trace this myth back to an 1862 article in an Ohio paper written by a man who was horrified by Civil War casualties, and who had never been within a dozen miles of Grant. Indeed, upon reading this article and hearing the rumors which spawned in his wake, Lincoln sent a “messenger” to spy on Grant, who concluded that the General had remained entirely sober during the Tennessee Campaign.

Rebuttals to Common Criticisms of Hillary Clinton:

Articles that rebut multiple criticisms of Hillary Clinton in one piece.

1. Thinking About Hillary — A Plea for Reason***

Written by Michael Arnovitz in June, this article covers several of the criticisms against Hillary Clinton in detail. Arnovitz examines why people hate Hillary so much and deconstructs the history (and lack of supporting evidence around) the “Hillary is a Liar” meme. He doesn’t shy away from the role of sexism in this election season. He also addresses questions of honesty, the scandals she’s been accused of being caught up in, her money, and her relationship to Wall Street.

Are scandals still scandals if nobody actually did anything wrong? And I think that’s a fair question, because Hillary’s political foes love to point out all the times she has been implicated (directly or indirectly) in scandals. Not surprisingly, however, they fail to point out that she has always been cleared of any wrongdoing.
Perhaps the “negative effect on credibility” is not so much the RESULT of these scandals as it is the INTENT of those who create them.

2. A Final Debunking of Progressive Attacks on Hillary Rodham Clinton

I don’t know about “final,” seeing as this was written back in early June by “PurplePower” on The Daily Kos. The article does offer a brief overview, with many video links, of many issues and rebuttals.

Many of the videos you see of Hillary opposing gay marriage were posted by right-wing groups to turn liberals against her. Ironically, the clip most commonly used is from a speech Hillary was giving *AGAINST* amending our constitution to ban gay marriage — saying that though she opposes gay marriage in principle, she opposes amending our constitution. Context is everything.
Let us also remember President Obama, Vice President Biden, *AND* Bernie Sanders evolved on gay marriage. Bernie officially evolved on gay marriage in 2009. For Hillary to be vilified for her gay marriage evolution more than her male counterparts is the very definition of sexism. It is also proof Karl Rove is hurting Hillary among the very people that should be enthusiastically supporting her…
This is politics 101 — hurt your enemy from within. Karl Rove loves it. Remember — he was the mastermind behind electing George W. Bush. Don’t let yourself be used by Karl Rove again and become the Ralph Nader of this election! Always remember Hillary and Bernie voted together 93% of the time and that Republicans don’t hate the Clintons for nothing.

The Primary Wasn’t Rigged

1. The System Isn’t “Rigged” Against Sanders

Written by FiveThirtyEight’s resident Hillary optimist, Harry Enten, and FiveThirtyEight founder and editor-in-chief, Nate Silver, this article breaks down the numbers of the primary in detail.

Realistically, if you throw everything together, the math suggests that Sanders doesn’t have much to complain about. If the Democratic nomination were open to as many Democrats as possible — through closed primaries — Clinton would be dominating Sanders. And if the nomination were open to as many voters as possible — through open primaries — she’d still be winning.

2. DNC Emails and Journalism

Another article by, Jesse MacKinnon; a self-described socialist who is highly critical of centrist democrats and the DNC talks about the Wikileaks email leak and explains why the election was not, in fact, “rigged.”

So now we get to the point where she “stole the election.” Well, vote rigging is never discussed in the emails. The DNC doesn’t actually control the physical infrastructure of voting. Those are run by state governments. They don’t do the vote counting. Those are state governments. The DNC doesn’t have the sheer financial capacity to bribe millions of voters. To quote a friend,
The idea that she masterminded wide-scale election fraud to defeat an opponent who never once polled ahead of her? I’m sorry, it seems thin. I get that it’s more satisfying to say you were cheated than to say you were out-voted, but the circumstances don’t support it… This family couldn’t cover up a blowjob, people.

3. The Democratic Primary Wasn’t Rigged

In June of 2016, senior contributing editor, Ari Berman, broke down the facts surrounding conspiracy theories that the primary election was “rigged” for The Nation.

But there also needs to be an honest discussion separating fact from fiction. Crying wolf about rigged elections, like some Sanders supporters have done, undermines the legitimacy of documented cases of voter suppression resulting from GOP-passed laws in states like North Carolina, Texas, and Wisconsin, which pose a real and urgent threat to American democracy.

Hillary Clinton IS Honest

1. Politifact Articles and Charts

Various politifact articles and charts show that Hillary Clinton is relatively honest when compared to her fellow politicans. Here’s an article from earlier in the primary:

Here’s one from “The Final Five”:

2. Hillary Clinton is One of America’s Most Honest Politicians

MotherJones short reaction to and a visual representation of data from Politifact showing that Hillary Clinton is relatively honest.

Look: all politicians lie sometimes. That includes Hillary Clinton. But as the chart on the right shows, Hillary is one of the most honest politicians on the national stage. Here’s a similar conclusion from the New York Times.
I know it’s in their partisan self interest for conservatives to insist that Hillary is the world’s biggest liar. But she isn’t. Not by a long, long way. Republicans need to get the beam out of their own eye before they keep banging on about the mote in Hillary’s.

3. This may shock you: Hillary Clinton is fundamentally honest***

Written by Jill Abramson at The Guardian during the primary, this article discusses that while Clinton isn’t a fan of the media and tends to keep things close to the vest, she is fundamentally honest.

I would be “dead rich”, to adapt an infamous Clinton phrase, if I could bill for all the hours I’ve spent covering just about every “scandal” that has enveloped the Clintons. As an editor I’ve launched investigations into her business dealings, her fundraising, her foundation and her marriage. As a reporter my stories stretch back to Whitewater. I’m not a favorite in Hillaryland. That makes what I want to say next surprising.
Hillary Clinton is fundamentally honest and trustworthy.

4. Fact Check: FBI Director Confirmed Under Oath that Hillary Clinton never lied about her emails

It’s not from a particularly neutral source, but this article points out that Comey stated, “We have no basis to conclude she lied to the FBI.” I’m trying to find a more comprehensive source that details how even emails that were classified at the time were mislabeled, so assuming Hillary Clinton knew the classification system, there was no reason for her to believe that these mislabeled classified emails were classified. Once I find that article, it will replace this one.

So when Hillary Clinton stated that “my answers were truthful” she was in fact telling the truth about having told the truth.

Hillary Clinton is Enthusiastically Admired

1. Clinton Most Admired Woman for Record 20th Time

Gallup polls show Hillary Clinton is, in fact, widely admired. This is a great article for fighting the “Hillary Clinton is incredibly disliked” narrative.

Clinton has been the most admired woman each of the last 14 years, and 20 times overall, occupying the top spot far longer than any other woman or man in Gallup’s history of asking the most admired question. Since 1993, the year she was first named most admired woman, Clinton has stayed in the news as first lady, U.S. senator, secretary of state and a two-time presidential candidate.
Former first lady Eleanor Roosevelt was named most admired woman 13 times during her lifetime, putting her second to Clinton in terms of first-place finishes. Dwight Eisenhower has 12 No. 1 finishes, the most for any man. Obama, the most admired man each of the last eight years, is now tied with Bill Clinton and Ronald Reagan for top overall finishes among men.

Sexism and Hillary Clinton

1. America Loves Women Like Hillary Clinton as long as They’re Not Asking for a Promotion***

This is an amazing article by Sady Doyle. She breaks down how the cycles of when Hillary Clinton is most disliked don’t correspond to scandals or votes, but to campaigns. And it’s not unique to Hillary Clinton; women face exceptional scrutiny when they ask for promotions. It’s especially difficult to choose a pull-quote as the entire article is insightful and amazing.

Public opinion of Clinton has followed a fixed pattern throughout her career. Her public approval plummets whenever she applies for a new position. Then it soars when she gets the job. The wild difference between the way we talk about Clinton when she campaigns and the way we talk about her when she’s in office can’t be explained as ordinary political mud-slinging. Rather, the predictable swings of public opinion reveal Americans’ continued prejudice against women caught in the act of asking for power.
Campaigning is not succeeding. It’s asking for success, and for power. To campaign is to publicly claim that you are better than the others (usually white men) who want the same job, and that a whole lot of people should work to place you in a more powerful position. In other words, campaigning is a transgressive act for women.

2. The Hillary Clinton Catch-22

An article from 2012 by Ann Friedman for NY Magazine. It was written when Hillary was highly popular. It details the roller coaster that are her approval ratings. Her “Hillary Clinton Catch 22” is “To succeed, she needs to be liked, but to be liked, she needs to temper her success.” A very interesting glance into the past.

The current Internet-fueled lovefest between Hillary and America is probably as doomed as Romeo and Juliet. But when I lament to Traister that we’ll probably turn on Hillary again, she surprises me with some optimism: “If she runs for president, I do think it’ll be different,” Traister says. “I won’t say we’ll just repeat 2008, because there are dynamics that shifted. From gender perspective and a race perspective, it did begin to shift how these power structures work. I do think there’s a warmth toward Hillary that is new. We’re seeing a creation of a new version of hard-ass Hillary that will not undo the aggression that people will inevitably express but will complicate it.”
Hillary’s reply: “I choose my cards. I choose them. I play them to the best of my ability. Move on to the next hand.” It’s pretty common for politicians or diplomats to claim that their success is a result of careful strategy, but this rings even truer for Hillary. And here’s where her most hateful critics, those who charge her with being a conniving, nepotistic, carpetbagging chameleon, kind of have a point: Hillary has had to become adept at pretending she’s something she’s not. When she’s herself — a woman with formidable intelligence, years of experience, and powerful connections — America can’t stand her.
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