Chelsea Clinton has never been afraid to get behind a microphone and campaign for her mother when called upon.
But it’s possible that her mom may not want to make that call after a verbal slip at a recent campaign rally in Minnesota.
While speaking to supporters in a hotly contested race for the Democratic nomination against Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, Chelsea Clinton made an unfortunate Freudian slip, according to the New York Daily News, and it only got more awkward from there.
Touching on the immunity that gun manufacturers have from crimes committed with their weapons, the Clinton’s only child reminded the crowd that these were the types of protections “President Sanders had voted for.”
Realizing what she had said, Chelsea Clinton then made a feeble attempt at a save.
“I hope not ‘President’ Sanders!” she said.
The elder Clinton virtually tied her underdog opponent during the Iowa Caucuses after enjoying a near-50-point lead in the early running.
All polling indications have her trailing Sanders in New Hampshire, where she is no longer expected to win. A victory, however, would go a long way in snuffing out his momentum.
As for Wednesday’s faux pas, it is unlikely that Hillary will hold it against her daughter for long, if at all. Not only has Chelsea Clinton given her a granddaughter, she’s also not the only Clinton to make foibles on the microphone.
Critics of Hillary Clinton’s debate performance this week were in unanimous agreement that her response to questions about taking exorbitant speaking fees from Goldman Sachs were disastrous.
The Washington Post‘s Chris Cillizza called it “politically awful for her.”
“Clinton is both seemingly caught by surprise and annoyed by the question all at once,” Cillizza observes, adding that neither “is a good reaction to what [Anderson] Cooper is asking” and that both “make for a uniquely bad response.”
“The problem is that you can’t say that if you are the front-running candidate for the Democratic nomination, a front-runner facing a more-serious-than-expected challenge from a populist liberal who has made your ties to Wall Street a centerpiece of his campaign.”
Sanders has been using Clinton’s response to his advantage, and if his were a Trump-like campaign, it would be likely the Chelsea Clinton comments might end up fueling his progress as well.
However, both of the Democratic contenders have been attempting to take the high road. That was challenged at the last debate with the following exchange.
It’s interesting to see where the two go from here, as it appears from the almost-even split that they are in for a long primary season, and once the trash talk comes out of the bag, it is difficult to put it back in.
One good piece of news for Mrs. Clinton, however, comes in a recent Vox piece that put the question to six political science experts: How electable is Bernie Sanders in a general election?
The short answer: it’s possible, but you shouldn’t like the odds.
This is due to something that the political scientists cause “loss aversion.”
Sanders’ plans cost money. They are impossible to do without significant tax increases, on both the rich and what is left of the middle class.
Bruce Miroff, a political science professor at the University at Albany, explains that loss aversion means “If you offer people the opportunity for gain against the fear of loss, the fear of loss is twice as psychologically powerful as the hope for gain.”
Or: people are more afraid of losing what they have than the promise of something with no guarantees.
Will that be enough to keep Chelsea Clinton’s accidental prophecy from coming true? A lot more will be known about that answer on March 1 after Super Tuesday results are tallied.