David Brooks says Hillary Clinton's primary victory shows "the transformation of the role of women is the biggest event of our lifetime." Brooks praised Clinton, calling her "competent" and "normal" compared to presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump. From Brooks' weekly Friday night appearance on PBS NewsHour:
DAVID BROOKS, The New York Times: Weirdly not. Maybe I’m a chauvinist or something.
But, you know, obviously, the transformation of the role of women is the biggest event of our lifetime. It’s the biggest transformation after thousands of years of human history to getting closer to equality on that front.
But Hillary Clinton, it was so long in coming, it didn’t, to me, feel like the big seismic shift, frankly, the way Barack Obama felt in ’08, I think because she’s such a familiar figure and because the social trend has been gradual in coming, that it didn’t feel like sort of this huge, momentous breakthrough moment...
I mean, people — I still sense people will be sick of Donald Trump and they will go for her. At least she will be competent and she will be normal. But one — it’s not sufficient for the country. It’s enough politically. But it’s not sufficient for — as Sanders even spoke this week, I was really struck by how he opened the campaign really well with a core message.
But the message just sat there. He had the same message from beginning to end, the same few talking points from beginning to end. It would have been interesting to know, if he had expanded that message or taken it the next step, a different kind of issues, if he would have done better.
But Clinton has not had those issues. And her incrementalism is not sufficient, as Mark said. And what will be interesting, if she can take some of the left-wing policies — one of the things we have seen from Trump is how ideologically flexible the country is right now, that they just want different, and they’re willing to grab from column A and column B.
Trump is a flawed messenger, but if Clinton could grab some column A from the left column and some unpredictable things from the right column that could appeal like to the family we just saw in Kai’s piece, suddenly, that’s a real message.
But, as I say, a lot of this is characterological. We just haven’t seen imagination from her over the course of her political campaign. We have seen determinedness, industriousness, but we haven’t seen the unexpected.