The Clintons' Hardball

There's an awful lot of criticism on the Internets. P.M. Carpenter:

The "Hillary-hating" dismissal is also largely diversionary; a catchy alliteration designed to affiliate principled progressives with the mindless, Clinton-hating reactionaries of yesteryear.

David Corn:

Clinton and her aides have been peddling false information about Obama to undercut one of his primary arguments: she voted for the war; I was against it. Engaging in such disingenuous attacks may help Clinton beat back Obama, but it is hardly the way for her to counter Obama's claim that she represents poltics-as-usual. It only proves his point.

Jill at Brilliant At Breakfast:

The Clinton attacks put Obama into an untenable position in which he has to respond, but not too angrily, lest he feed white people's "Angry Black Man" fears.

Is this what it's come to? Are the Clintons so hungry for a restoration that they're willing to jeopardize the best chance for a Democratic sweep in a generation? And if so, doesn't that make them just like the Bush family with whom they're so chummy?

This strikes me as the real trap. The Clintons aren't so dumb as to engage in blatant racism. But if they can create a fight between them and Obama over race in the media, the polarization helps them shore up their white ethnic base. They studied who put them over the top in new Hampshire - and they're trying to replicate it nationally. They did the math. They probably didn't want to go there if they didn't have to. But after Iowa, they have to.