— GuardAmerican (@GuardAmerican) June 9, 2014
Following her tone-deaf claim that she and her husband were “dead broke” when they left the White House, Alec MacGillis posits that Clinton’s wealth will be an issue if and when she runs for president:
Even before Clinton’s clumsy answer to Sawyer, it wasn’t hard to predict that the Clintons’ relentless quest for great wealth in the years since they left the White House was going to loom as one of the main areas of scrutiny should Hillary make a second bid for president. Bill Clinton’s pursuit of riches, and the company he was keeping in that endeavor, was an issue when she ran in 2008, and in the years since, Hillary herself has joined the chase, giving $200,000-and-up speeches to Goldman Sachs (twice) as well as humbler venues such as the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (really.) The couple’s net worth is now estimated to be as high as $50 million and they spent last summer living in a $200,000 per month mansion on the Hamptons [seen in the above tweet, which has the incorrect year].
Americans are famously slow to begrudge successful people their good fortune. Still, the country is getting more sensitive to the winner-take-all trends benefiting the top one percent (and top-tenth of the top one percent that the Clintons qualify for), and it will be very interesting to see how candidate Hillary Clinton reconciles her family’s fabulous wealth with her and her husband’s explicit attempt to fit their rhetoric (and the mixed economic legacy of the Clinton administration) into a more populist frame.
In fact, Yglesias remarks, the amount of debt the Clintons accrued in the late ’90s was not at all a sign of penury. Quite the contrary:
You need to be really rich to go that deeply into debt.