Olivia Nuzzi writes: If you were a presidential candidate who polled low among women, who was on your third wife, who had a reputation for womanizing and a professional relationship with a man who’d recently been axed from his job for sexual harassment, would you respond to the latest Anthony Weiner scandal by A. Staying out of it; B. Changing the subject; or C. Attacking your opponent by making a dubious connection between Weiner’s behavior and her own?
If you chose C, congratulations: This election has officially warped your sense of good judgment.
Donald Trump is blaming Hillary Clinton for the actions of her aide’s husband, bringing into focus his fraught relationship with the female sex and his history of marital infidelity—not to mention his own adviser with a “perv” problem, to adopt the language of the New York tabloids.
Trump’s argument is a good peek into his psyche, where a man can be absolved of wrongdoing so long as there’s a woman around to carry the blame. It’s also an example of why, thus far, his campaign against Clinton has been unsuccessful: First, because he’s accused her of anything and everything, regardless of its basis in reality (he claimed she founded ISIS before asserting it about President Obama), and rather than turn people against her, it’s had the effect of watering down her actual flaws. Second, because he lacks the self-awareness and political know-how to understand when he might be pushing away the voters he needs the most. [Continue reading…]