Sunday, June 26, 2016


‘Brexit’ Revolt Casts a Shadow Over Hillary Clinton’s Caution

A rally for Hillary Clinton in Raleigh, N.C., on Wednesday. Her “Stronger Together” slogan mirrors one used by the “Remain” campaign in the British referendum on leaving the European Union. Richard Perry/The New York Times

For Hillary Clinton, Britain’s emotionally charged uprising against the European Union is the sort of populist victory over establishment politics that she fears in the coming presidential election.
Mrs. Clinton shares more with the defeated “Remain” campaign than just their common slogan, “Stronger Together.” Her fundamental argument, much akin to Prime Minister David Cameron’s against British withdrawal from the European Union, is that Americans should value stability and incremental change over the risks entailed in radical change and the possibility of chaos if Donald J. Trump wins the presidency.

She offers reasonableness instead of resentment, urging voters to see the big picture and promising to manage economic and immigration upheaval, just as Mr. Cameron did. She, too, is a pragmatic internationalist battling against nationalist anger, cautioning that the turmoil after the so-called Brexit vote underscores a need for “calm, steady, experienced leadership in the White House.”

But prudence is cold comfort to people fed up with more-of-the-same.

According to their friends and advisers, Mrs. Clinton and former President Bill Clinton have worried for months that she was out of sync with the mood of the electorate, and that her politically safe messages — like “I’m a progressive who gets results” — were far less compelling to frustrated voters than the “political revolution” of Senator Bernie Sanders or Mr. Trump’s grievance-driven promise to “Make America Great Again.”

Mr. Sanders and Mr. Trump won a combined 25 million votes during the primary season, compared with 16 million for Mrs. Clinton. And while many of Mr. Sanders’s supporters are expected to support her in November, she has not recalibrated her message to try to tap into the anger that he and Mr. Trump channeled.
Continue reading the main story

Nor does Mrs. Clinton have any plans, advisers say, to take cues from the Brexit campaign and start soft-pedaling her support for globalized markets, or denouncing porous borders, illegal immigrants and the lack of job protections in free-trade agreements.

Much distinguishes the presidential contest from the British fight, of course, including a head-to-head matchup between well-known candidates, a sharply different economic context, and a long and proud history of immigration.