Hillary Clinton has a management problem, both large and small, according to one liberal commentator.
Brendan Nyhan writes in the New York Times
that the current controversy surrounding Clinton regarding her use of private e-mail
during her time as secretary of state shows that she needs to rethink her management strategy if she plans to run for president next year.
Citing mismanagement claims during Clinton's failed 2008 presidential campaign, Nyhan argues the same thing is happening all over again to the former first lady and U.S. senator.
"What's striking about these failures is how different they are," Nyhan writes. "The paradox of Mrs. Clinton's leadership style is that she often seems to simultaneously have too many advisers and too few."
Nyhan writes that because the Clintons have been in politics for so many years, they have developed a loyal following of advisers and assistants who are constantly working behind the scenes to craft their message. And that's where the problem lies, he writes.
"Internal conflicts among numerous senior staff members and consultants … helped undermine the campaign's response to Barack Obama, who was not similarly encumbered," Nyhan writes of Clinton's 2008 campaign for president.
"Mrs. Clinton faces similar obstacles during this election. Recent public squabbling among Clinton surrogates prompted David Axelrod, Mr. Obama's former campaign manager, to comment that Mrs. Clinton's likely campaign chairman, John Podesta, 'has to get control of the Clinton operation.'"
Clinton also has a close-knit group of advisers and aides that is smaller, which Nyhan thinks failed at handling the email crisis.
"These trusted staff members help manage supporters' access and shield her from the ceaseless scrutiny she faces," Nyhan writes. "However, their deep loyalty and close alignment with her worldview appear to have left them ill-prepared for the reaction that news of the private e-mail account would generate. Clinton aides reportedly knew about the account months ago but took no action to release information at a less damaging time.
"After the news broke, a prominent Clinton aide lashed out at the press — another example of the bunker-like mentality among her staff."
The ongoing controversy has damaged Clinton's image to some, while others — including high-profile Democrat donors
— continue to support her and would like her to run for the White House.
And polls continue to show Clinton is the clear leader on the left
should she decide to run.
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