Ed Klein: The Truth about Hillary

Matt Drudge is reporting on a forthcoming book that purportedly has some startling–yet completely unspecified–revelations that will sink Hillary Rodham Clinton’s political career.

A book battle has broken out on Publisher’s Row over the ultimate Hillary-attack! The project being billed as “Hillary in the Raw”, like you’ve never seen her before, is set to drop in September by liberal Ed Klein, former NYT MAGAZINE editor, VANITY FAIR, PARADE contributor and author of multiple works on the Kennedys. “The revelations in it should sink her candidacy,” a source close to Klein warns the DRUDGE REPORT.

Last week, Clinton stalwart Ann Lewis fired off an email to supporters warning of the ‘Swift Boat’ tactics coming against the former first lady turned senator. Now the coming sales pitch for ‘ THE TRUTH ABOUT HILLARY What She Knew, When She Knew It, and How Far She’ll Go to Become President’ reads: ‘Just as the swift boat veterans convinced millions of voters that John Kerry lacked the character to be president, Klein’s book will influence everyone who is sizing up the character of Hillary Clinton…

‘Despite more than a dozen years in the national spotlight and more than a dozen unauthorized books about her, she has managed to keep many secrets from the public — especially about her turbulent marriage and its impact on her career. There have been plenty of rumors about what Hillary and Bill Clinton did behind closed doors, but never a definitive book that exposes the truth. Bestselling author Edward Klein draws on rare access to inside sources to reveal what Hillary knew and when she knew it during her years as first lady. Klein’s book, embargoed until publication, will break news about the choices and calculations she has made over the years.’

Unless the book reveals that Hillary is secretly a Christian conservative, I can’t see what it might reveal that would seriously harm her. The Swift Boat attacks hurt John Kerry because the “Vietnam War Hero” mantle was at the heart of his candidacy. By calling into question his actions in Vietnam and, especially, highlighting the inconsistency between his Jane Fonda-esque actions upon returning home and his later Rambo persona, his most important “qualification” for office was undermined. At that point, it simply became “Anybody but Bush.”

By contrast, people pretty much presume that Hillary and Bill Clinton have a rather unconventional marriage, that they both lied throughout the Monica Lewinski fiasco, and that Hillary is an incredibly calculating, cold fish. People who are bothered by those things were already predisposed to vote against her in the Democratic primaries and/or the general election.

Unlike the average presidential wannabe, HRC has been under heavy public scrutiny for years. Even though most politicians have long pre-presidential candidate careers, they’re mostly unknown nationwide. That’s hardly the case with Clinton, who has been a lightning rod since the 1992 primaries. Klein may sell a lot of books and get the talk radio world abuzz; it’s incredibly unlikely he will do much damage to Hillary Clinton’s chances of getting elected president.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. LJD says:

    “I can’t see what it might reveal that would seriously harm her.”

    Exactly. Those who will buy, read, and follow the story, likely have already made up their minds about her.

    Those who support her have the blinders on. There’s nothing she could do, short of going berserk with a butcher knife in the Senate, on camera, that would change their minds.

    Should be a fun read though. I love getting dirt on the “holier than thou”.

  2. bryan says:

    nless the book reveals that Hillary is secretly a Christian conservative, I can’t see what it might reveal that would seriously harm her.

    Perhaps it will reveal that she’s a closet Lebanese.

    Not that there’s anything wrong with that. 😉

  3. Just Me says:

    I don’t think it hurts her in regards to losing her base.

    But neither party can win an election on their base alone, and Hillary has to pull in voters who swing, and this kind of stuff could hurt her with those. Although, most along the lines of making it difficult for her to appeal to them, rather than losing them.

  4. Eric says:

    If there was anything both significant and believable in the book it probably would have been leaked with this report. This smells like an attempt to gin up some fake controversy before the book is released.

    If they really want to push it, maybe they should come up with some “details” that the editors insisted be removed from the book because they were based on a single source.

  5. Scott Dillard says:

    There has been serious speculation that Hillary is a lesbian for years. If it is, she will become the darling of the ultraleft. The far right will try to use it against her, insisting that this duplicity of character makes her unfit for the presidency. I don’t care if she is a lesbian or not. But it sure would be fun to watch her run with it out there.

  6. Myopist says:

    “Unless the book reveals that Hillary is secretly a Christian conservative, I can’t see what it might reveal that would seriously harm her.”

    Well, she DOES belong to those hardcore fanatics known as the United Methodists… OK, I can’t say that with a straight face. I mean. Come on. Methodists. I don’t think that they even know how to burn people at the stake.

    OTOH, it’s going to be fun in ’08 to remind the more partisan Democrats that Sen. Clinton and Pres. Bush belong to the same sect. 🙂

  7. McGehee says:

    >First Rule of Drudge Report: Promise dirt on Hillary, get traffic.