Let’s be candid: both of these candidates have had trouble with the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
The lead editorial in today’s Washington Post takes Mrs. Clinton to task for her personal email account and the Inspector General’s report criticizing her practices. The second Post editorial is about Trump’s latest (as of this writing anyway) lies about his fund-raising for veterans (in place of his participating in a Fox News debate, you’ll recall) and his lying about his own donation of $1 million to that cause which came only after Post reporters stared looking into what donations actually took place.
Mrs. Clinton has parsed her words, though probably not much worse than most political candidates have. Mr. Trump doesn’t parse words. He lies. And he spite of that head of hair he has -- he lies baldly.
Some of his supporters say that’s him “telling it like it is.” But it isn’t. He lies.
He lies about funding his own campaign. He’s now raising money for the general election but sidesteps his boast to fund his own campaign by saying he’s just raising money for the party. But he’s raising money for the party to fund his campaign, and others, and he gets some of the money he’s raising. He loaned his primary campaign money that could be paid back when the money starts rolling in for the general, or after.
He lies about banning all Muslims from this country; now he says that there will be exceptions.
He lies about eliminating the deficit in eight years. Okay, let’s put that in the category of “little fibs” most candidates tell – promises they wished they could keep, but know they can’t.
He lies about his taxes. He says "there's not to learn" from his returns. But there is plenty to learn, it's just things he doesn't want anyone to know. Like what his true charitable giving is; what his true tax rate is; how he avoided paying taxes.
Hell, he even liked about not watching Fox News anymore. He admitted to Megan Kelly that he still was watching it even though he, in a(nother) fit of pique against the "slimy" media, he had stopped in protest over Megan Kelly. He lies about building a beautiful wall to keep Mexicans out – but he knows that will never happen. Fact is, his supporters know that too.
He lies about putting a 45 percent tariff on exports from China. He said he never said such a thing…but he did.
And there are hundreds of more lies. Almost too many to track -- but there are people keeping track.
The issue is, none of his lies have hurt him so far. When someone says he lies he says, sometimes, that no, he just changed his mind. Or, oh yeah, well lying Ted lies more and so does Crooked Hillary. I guess Low Energy Jeb never had the energy to lie, or he would have.
The point is we have two flawed, to use a too light term, candidates about to lead our two major parties into the November elections. Their unfavorable numbers challenge each other – both far over 50 percent, the highest ever heading into a presidential election.
As the general election unfolds, we’ll hear more about Hillary’s emails; Bill’s womanizing; unfortunately we’ll hear about Vince Foster, a former Bill aide who committed suicide back during the Clinton Administration and who conspiracy theorists like to say was really killed by the Clintons. We’ll hear about Trump making “deals” that took advantage of the working American he claims to be championing, that helped him avoid millions in taxes; about his involvement with the Mob when it came to his casinos (tangent: Hillary does make a fair point – how do you bankrupt a casino???). And about more than we can even imagine today.
In other words if you thought this primary election was a doozy, wait until you see the Trump Lie Machine go against the Clinton Echo Chamber.