Rachel Maddow had Hillary Clinton on her show for a little chat Tuesday, on the occasion of the paperback release of Clinton's campaign memoir What Happened, for which we would give you a kickback link if Amazon had it yet. The new edition includes a longish postscript in which Clinton discusses what's happened since the campaign, and she is, quite frankly, worried about the damage being done to American institutions -- not just because the "president" is unfit for office, but because his administration and his party seem bent on acting more like a wrecking crew than protectors of small-d democratic norms. Clearly, it was all just a crazy series of excuses for why Clinton lost to the Greatest Man Ever, but we figured we'd pander to our neoliberal base and cover it anyway.

You can watch the whole thing here with a cable login (freaking cheapass MSNBC mofos), or find chunks of the interview on the interwebs. Or you can take our word for it -- it was a pretty good interview! Especially if you like people who talk in paragraphs instead of stream-of-slobbering-stupid. A few highlights!

Hey, how about getting Congress fixed and saving America from its current leadership? Clinton says she's optimistic about the chances of Democrats taking the House, and maybe even the Senate, as a means of providing the good ol' constitutional check on Donald Trump's power, although of course people have to SHOW UP AND VOTE for that to happen. She also fears that if the Rs hold on to both houses this fall, there may be nothing to stop Trump from doing whatever he wants, since Republicans have shown no inclination to do anything but occasionally tut-tut and vote for more tax cuts and deregulation.

Clinton also had a psychic prediction: Whatever the outcome of the midterms, she expects Trump to "wholesale fire people" after November 6, because he's just that sort of jerk, "and if we don't have one or both Houses of Congress in place, he will be even more uncontrollable and unaccountable." Then she made us all nostalgic for times when the rooms of the West Wing had nothing but grownups in them:

He will fire people in the White House. He will fire people in his administration who he thinks are crossing him, questioning him, undermining him. And I think about all of the hours I spent in The Situation Room with President Obama.

And we had vigorous disagreements about all kinds of issues, but I never, ever, ever doubted that the president was making the best decision he could based on the facts and the evidence as we were required to present it to him. He didn't say to us, well, here's what I believe, here's what my gut tells me. He says what's the evidence? What are the facts? What are the consequences from, you know, Path A to Path Z?

On the Brett Kavanaugh nomination, Clinton said she thought Christine Blasey Ford and her attorney had the right idea in asking for an FBI investigation before any Senate hearing, because JesusChristforfuckssake, you know?

I remember back in the Thomas hearing when Senator Byrd was asked what he was going to do, and he said in a situation like this we should give the benefit of the doubt to the Court and the country. And that's what the Republicans should be doing right now, from the White House down Pennsylvania Avenue to the Senate, give the benefit of the doubt to the Court and the country. And that means having an investigation that will then lead to a hearing that will then lead to a vote if appropriate. And instead, they are playing the hardest of hardballs to try to pack the court with, you know, another nominee, regardless of the questions.

Clinton's reference to historical precedent was lost on many wingnuts, of course because did you know Robert Byrd was in the KKK? The pillocks at Real Clear Politics printed all the words Clinton said there about giving "the benefit of the doubt to the Court and the country" -- i.e., being very cautious and investigating before voting on a dubious nominee -- and decided it meant Clinton meant everyone should automatically give Dr. Ford the benefit of the doubt. And while Clinton did say she found Ford credible enough to warrant a thorough investigation, she sure as hell didn't say Ford deserves to be believed uncritically. That's kind of why you'd want an investigation, sheesh.

On Russia's election fuckery, Clinton had to go and make it all about herself, simply because of all the evidence that Vladimir Putin simply hates her for doing things a US secretary of State does, like condemning unfair elections and calling for Ukraine's Russian-backed president to please not take the opposition candidate and LOCK HER UP.

I think I was an obstacle to their plans to undermine and disrupt our democracy.

I think I was an obstacle to their efforts to try to impose greater authoritarian control in Russia, go after people who were opponents of Putin's, whether they were in the LGBTQ community or the press, and I think that they wanted to get me out of the way.

And the question I think is worth asking why did they want to get me out of the way? What is it they are trying to accomplish now? And from what we've seen, they're still trying to stir up trouble. They're still trying to influence people's minds on social media. Recent information came out about how they had tens of thousands of, you know, bots and proxies talking about the Affordable Care Act.

Clinton emphasized that of course the real attack was on American democracy and institutions, not her personally, although hey, isn't it convenient that Donald Trump isn't all that worried about "human rights" or "fair elections" or "laws" -- in either country? She said she's not sure whether Trump is a "witting or unwitting tool of Putin," but either way, Putin is definitely the smarter one, who has a

clear vision of what he wants to accomplish, and high on his bucket list is undermining democracies. And he uses money. He uses blackmail. He uses all kinds of inducements to political leaders and business leaders to try to bend them to his will, to make them part of the future that he's trying to create.

Oh, yes, and as to that anonymous NYT op-ed writer saying there had already been "discussions" of invoking the 25th Amendment to remove Trump for being unfit to serve? She's skeptical, because if there had been any such meeting, someone in this White House obviously would have leaked it. She did at least acknowledge there have been some private conversations among some staffers about the "president's" weird behavior (LIKE HIS BELIEF IN TIME TRAVEL) that may not have gotten out yet. She also suggested the op-ed sounded like a cry for help.

Oh yes, and the interview ends with Maddow mentioning a bit in the new epilogue where Clinton speculates about the possibility that Donald Trump may contrive to cancel the 2020 presidential elections altogether, although neither she nor Clinton went into any detail on THAT, so buy the book, GOODNIGHT EVERYBODY!

Really, we'd help you buy the new edition, but Jeff Bezos isn't even helping us push this horrible anti-Trump narrative. Stupid "resistance."

And now it is your OPEN THREAD!

[MSNBC (requires cable subscriber login) / Real Clear Politics / Politico]

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Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.


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