Clinton Breaks Even

You win some; you lose some. Sen. Hillary Clinton has already seen her share.

A fortnight ago she was trashed by David Geffen, the Hollywood mogul and erstwhile supporter, who took shots at the Clinton “machine” that can be merciless in its payback. What riveted the public’s attention, however, was Geffen’s characterization of the Clintons as infamously veracity challenged. “Everybody in politics lies,” assessed Geffen, “but they do it with such ease, it’s troubling.”

It certainly troubled the Clinton machine. Some verbal jousting with the Barack Obama campaign resulted, which only served to give the Clinton-character issue more news-cycle legs.

Arguably, however, this embarrassing flap was more than offset by the syndicated comments of conservative New York Times columnist David Brooks, hardly a Clinton water-carrier. He put her support for the Iraq war in context. There’s no need to apologize, stated Brooks, so the Liberal wing of the Democratic Party needs to get off her case.

Brooks wondered if those calling on Clinton to apologize actually had read her remarks during the war resolution debate in October 2002, when she “specifically rejected a pre-emptive, unilateral attack on Saddam.”

Sure, she was triangulating, but it can’t be ignored, underscored Brooks, that Clinton wanted “more U.N. resolutions, more inspections, more diplomacy, with the threat of force reserved as a last resort

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