Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Why Hillary's Likability Ratings Are In The Tank

David Brooks offers the best explanation I've ever seen as to why Hillary Clinton's favorability ratings are so low.

I would begin my explanation with this question: Can you tell me what Hillary Clinton does for fun? We know what Obama does for fun — golf, basketball, etc. We know, unfortunately, what Trump does for fun.

But when people talk about Clinton, they tend to talk of her exclusively in professional terms. For example, on Nov. 16, 2015, Peter D. Hart conducted a focus group on Clinton. Nearly every assessment had to do with on-the-job performance. She was “multitask-oriented” or “organized” or “deceptive.”

Clinton’s career appears, from the outside, to be all consuming. Her husband is her co-politician. Her daughter works at the Clinton Foundation. Her friendships appear to have been formed at networking gatherings reserved for the extremely successful.

People who work closely with her adore her and say she is warm and caring. But it’s hard from the outside to think of any non-career or pre-career aspect to her life. Except for a few grandma references, she presents herself as a résumé and policy brief.

In a "sharing" society where we share our cars on Uber, our homes on Airbnb and we overshare on Facebook, Hillary should open up and share a little more about her family life and her personal interests and hobbies. After all, it's not 2008 and being "likable enough" didn't cut it then and won't cut it now.