Clinton and Libby

She is not going to be front and center of this critical battle to highlight the profound corruption at the heart of this presidency. She was among the last Democratic candidates to respond last night - long after Barack Obama, John Edwards, Bill Richardson, Chris Dodd and Joe Biden. Why? Because of her husband's grotesque abuse of the pardon power at the end of his presidency. Just a small reminder of the baggage Clinton carries, baggage that will prevent her from either fully exposing the abuse of power under this administration or ending it if she were to become president. Everything in Clinton's past, after all, suggests that she will quite eagerly accept Dick Cheney's transformation of the executive branch into a rampart of secrecy, executive privilege and personal will. These were her hallmarks in the White House as well. She shares with Cheney an obsessive fixation on her own secrecy, a paranoid suspicion of her political opponents, and a desire to use all the powers at her disposal. I don't think she can be a credible critic of this administration's contempt for the rule of law. And I don't think she can be a credible antidote to it either. If Democrats believe otherwise, they're fooling themselves a second time around.