News Release

Behind Clinton Book’s Attack on Sanders

Hillary Clinton’s new book What Happened includes what a Washington Post headline calls a “subtly savage takedown of Bernie Sanders.” One passage of the book says that “because we agreed on so much,” Sanders couldn’t argue on policy grounds and “so he had to resort to innuendo and impugning my character.” Clinton adds that “his attacks caused lasting damage, making it harder to unify progressives in the general election and paving the way for Trump’s ‘Crooked Hillary’ campaign.”

NORMAN SOLOMON, solomonprogressive at gmail.com
Solomon was a Sanders delegate from California to the Democratic National Convention and the nationwide coordinator of the Bernie Delegates Network.

He said today: “At first glance it may seem odd that Clinton has gone out of her way to rip open old wounds from a primary campaign that ended well over a year ago. But there’s a kind of perverse logic at play. Whatever aspects of score-settling or personal anger might be involved, what’s much more significant is the apparent political calculus.”

Solomon added: “If Clinton weren’t determined to boost the corporate wing of the Democratic Party for the future, her new book’s jabs at Bernie would be gratuitous and bereft of tactical logic. But those jabs are not mainly about the past. Looking ahead while recounting her version of what happened last year, Clinton is attempting to scapegoat not only Bernie Sanders but also his activist base. She’s trying to discredit the progressive wing that’s now ascendant in the party from the grassroots.

“By a thin margin, six months ago Clinton’s backers were able to shoehorn the uninspiring former Labor Secretary Tom Perez into becoming chair of the Democratic National Committee. But the DNC is close to floundering under the continuation of the same kind of leadership that led to the November 2016 disaster.

“After losing the presidential race, Hillary Clinton and the big-money elites behind her are fearful that they could lose control of the Democratic Party apparatus. Clinton’s decision to attack Bernie Sanders via her book is a reflection of that fear.”

Solomon is a co-founder of RootsAction.org, an online activist group that now has 1.5 million active members. He is the executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy. He recently wrote the piece “DNC Fraud Suit Exposes Anti-Democratic Views in Democratic Party.”