Campaign Tarnishes Clintons' Legacy

Divisive tactics take shine off long-time winners
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 9, 2008 9:09 AM CDT
Hillary Rodham Clinton hugs her husband after addressing supporters during a South Dakota and Montana primary night event Tuesday, June 3, 2008 in New York.   (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)
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(Newser) – Hillary and Bill Clinton have led complicated public lives, but they’ve always been winners. Now Hillary’s defeat has jeopardized that legacy, thanks to a campaign that saw her repeatedly stretch the truth, invoke assassination, and lose African-American support. It’s one thing to employ questionable tactics and win, one supporter tells the New York Times. “It’s another to go flat-out in that mode and fail.”

Fully assessing her legacy is tough, especially in the short term. One historian sees it as “a little like Ted Kennedy in 1980. That was the end of the dream of another Kennedy presidency. But it didn’t really diminish the importance of Kennedy in American life.”