The MSM “I’m not Defending Bill Clinton” caucus

I had to laugh when I saw this piece at the Hill where John Podesta was so worried about this answer to a Town Hall question by Bernie Sanders:

“But I hope he’s not thinking about going there, because, again, I think what Trump has done to go in the gutter is reprehensible,” the Clinton campaign chairman added.

Sanders fielded a question late Friday at a town hall in Iowa about Bill Clinton’s affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky.

“Hillary Clinton is not Bill Clinton. What Bill Clinton did, I think we can all acknowledge was totally, totally, totally disgraceful and unacceptable. But I am running against Hillary Clinton. I am not running against Bill Clinton,” Sanders told the questioner, according to The Washington Post.

Podesta’s warnings to Sanders are laughable as he has as much chance of costing Bernie his seat in VT as I have of being named Secretary of Time Travel in a Ted Cruz administration but more importantly it combined with these little Riffs on Morning Joe crystallizes the problem for a certain group of Democrats and media folks of a particular age.

During the Clinton impeachment hearings Democrat pols and the media that serves them knew what Bill Clinton was and what he had done, they had a choice:  They could back him up, despite the facts OR they could pressure him to resign and be replaced by Al Gore.

They choose the former.

Perhaps because the rest of their caucus couldn’t stand the scrutiny (think Ted Kennedy).  Perhaps because they thought it would lead to a GOP victory a la 1976 or perhaps they decided they didn’t want to risk emboldening a GOP that had only just won the House of Representatives for the first time in 40 years.

But whatever the reason they not only stuck with Bill Clinton  defending him en masse but for 15 years afterwards proceeded to pretend that nothing had happened acting as if, at worst Bill Clinton was the victim of a partisan witch hunt.

Thanks to Donald Trump and Bill Cosby that position is no longer tenable so plan B has become to acknowledge that what Bill Clinton did was wrong (How many times can Harold Ford say “I’m not defending” ) while maintaining that bringing it up in the context of Hillary is beyond the pale.

In other words: talking about what Bill Clinton did to women is,  in his and people like Donna Brazile’s eyes,  far worse than what he actually did to women.

This reaction is of course completely understandable because if one does not have this reaction it begs the question that nobody in the MSM wants to ask or be asked:

If what Bill Clinton did to women was “disgraceful” and “unacceptable” then why did the media elites and Democrat pols not only defend him at the time but spend that last 15 years treating the ex president as if he had never done a wrong thing?

I submit and suggest that people from Podesta, to Andrea Mitchell to Harold Ford and many others all know the answer to that question, which is why they can’t bear to have it asked.