Hillary: Reassuring Senatorial Egos

Tina Brown used to edit Joe Klein’s stories when she was at Vanity Fair, and recently columned in the Washington Post about his new anti-Hillary tome. She knows him, and thus is qualified to judge what’s behind this book, full of weird and wacky assertions about the former first couple.

“What Klein doesn’t understand is that Hillary’s success today depends not on an ability to be aggressively masculine, but on the exact opposite. That black pantsuit is the power woman’s burqa — a disguise for screening out, not extinguishing, distracting gender. All the bipartisan charm she’s been wielding — the assiduous reassuring of schoolboy senatorial egos, the tireless disarmament campaign of sharing the limelight — comes right out of the female playbook of flattery and compromise.

When she plays the attack dog, as she did at a New York fundraiser two weeks ago, it’s actually a rare but welcome flash of after-dinner dominatrix. The tone of Ed Klein’s book epitomizes the pouting of all the guys she has ever defeated in a contest of intellect. In the Senate Hillary has grown, and, in a way, the public has grown with her. We have absorbed her tribulations. And whether or not we want to vote for her, we share her desire to leave them behind.”