It’s quite true as GFR and Greg Sargent point out that Hillary Clinton, like her husband, seems to get uniquely bad treatment at the hands of the MSM. Since a big part of what bloggers do is attack the press for being unfair to Democrats, one assumes this means we’ll see many newspapers articles being unfair to Clinton and many blog posts complaining about them.
Still, I think it’s important for liberals not to let Clinton’s good fortune in her enemies distract people from basic realities. The precise nuances of what everyone’s said about Iran so far aside, it’s pretty clear that Edwards and Clinton have similar records as officeholders, that Obama has a somewhat more liberal record than those two, and that Edwards has positioned himself to the left of Obama and Clinton in terms of what he’s laid out so far in the campaign. Precisely how one should evaluate Edwards versus Obama in that context isn’t obvious to me. And, again, it doesn’t just follow from the fact that Clinton is clearly the least liberal of the three that she shouldn’t be the Democratic nominee. Perhaps you, like Clinton, have views that aren’t especially liberal. Alternatively, perhaps you think Clinton’s less-liberal positioning is a price that needs to be paid for electoral purposes. I can think of any number of things one might say about this and, obviously, there’s more to life than just ideology — competence, intelligence, judgment, character, etc. all matter.
But insofar as we’re talking about ideology, we should be clear. Clinton, like her husband, is both hated by the right and treated unfairly by the press and a not very liberal politician, coming from the party’s more centrist wing and flanked by advisors from the same. In a general election, she’d clearly be the progressive choice against Giuliani, McCain, Romney, etc. but is clearly the less progressive choice vis-a-vis Edwards and Obama. I don’t think the fact that she’s mistreated by the press should distract people from this basic point. What’s more, garnering bad press is a bug, not a feature, when you’re looking for a candidate. Which is all, I suppose, by way of introducing my Guardian piece about Clinton’s Iraq War revisionism.