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Do Clinton Voters Care About War?

In America, we do not lock up our murdering politicians. We rarely prosecute or impeach them. The only scandals that stick are sex ones. Serious voters, writers, pundits, and anyone else who feels as if they have deep principles invariably buckle under the partisan weight of the political system.

She hasn’t yet been coronated, but Hillary Clinton is surely about to win the Democratic nomination. Sure, Sen. Bernie Sanders has given her an amusing amount of trouble. And though he’s voted for deaths abroad as well, he hasn’t voted for as many as Clinton. (This is not an argument for Sanders, but it is unquestionably an argument against Clinton.) Still, she’s got this thing in the bag, because she’s got party loyalty, and she may even win the hearts of a few lost, sad little neocons running away from Donald Trump.

Clinton also has the nomination because war doesn’t bother Democrats. They like to think it does, when they remember it exists, but they will risk no political capital whatsoever on making sure it stops, or making sure a warmongering candidate isn’t nominated or elected.

During the last few decades, any semblance of an antiwar movement has withered under Democratic presidents. Not since “hey/hey/LBJ/how many kids did you kill today?” has a warmonger from the left side of the isle provoked ire. Bill Clinton and Barack Obama have much blood on their hands, but not enough to push people into the streets. There are encouraging exceptions, as there are to all rules. Code Pink and other activist groups come out and protest Democrats, and don’t seem to have any plans to stop. However, it seems the anti-Iraq, antiwar movement of the early 21st century was a Dubya blip and nothing more. Part of that may be the public’s feeble attention span for atrocities far away. But it certainly appears that another aspect is that polite Democratic wars are easier to accept than grand Republican ones. Even if they both lead to the deaths of innocent people.

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