How Hillary Clinton Failed a High School Test

There still is quite a bit of shock about the fact that Hillary Clinton lost the Presidential election to Donald Trump.  By all measures this result should not have happened.  Hillary Clinton had the advantages of the most money raised, generally the backing of the mass media, the most organized and best campaign money could buy, the support of the best and brightest political minds, and she had all the notable celebrity endorsements.

So how the heck did this happen? Why did she lose?  Well, probably the answer is more complex than this, but it can be argued that the Clinton campaign ultimately failed what can be called the “high school test” to become school president. It is an oversimplification, but let’s just play out the scenario and the test this way.

You are the smartest kid in the school and you decide to run for school president. You come from the “right side” of town, as do many of your friends in the high school. You count on those friends to support you. Your opponent, who some think of as the class clown, also comes from the right side of town but is friendly with the kids from the “wrong side” of town.

Then during the course of your campaign  you and your friends pretty much talk with each other about what a great high school president you will be because you are the smartest kid in the school. You and your friends don’t take the class clown seriously and pretty much ignore the kids from the wrong side of town because you figure they will vote for you anyway because you are so smart.

Then you and your friends start mocking students from the wrong side of town who might actually like the class clown, despite the stupid things he says.  They are ridiculed because they are not going to college, or if they are going to college they are not going to go to the right colleges. You and your friends make fun of the type of music they like or the types of jobs their parents have.  You and your friends let them know you think they are stupid and ignorant if they would even think of supporting the class clown.

Then the weekend before the school election you decide to have some final campaign parties.  The parties are held on the right side of town at the homes of your rich friends.  Meanwhile, the class clown spends his last weekend going to parties on the wrong side of town and spending time those students.

Then the election for school president is held and you lose because the class clown got a lot of votes from the kids from the wrong side of town.  They end up not voting for you because they didn’t like you or your friends for either ignoring them or making fun of them.  Meanwhile, not as many of your friends supported you as you thought.  Some decided they had other things to do so they didn’t bother to vote, or secretly they actually liked the class clown and decided to vote for him.

This is how Hillary Clinton failed the “high school test” by her campaign.  An important part of the electorate was ignored or even ridiculed to the point where enough of them decided to vote for Donald Trump.  Even with all the money, smarts, and celebrity support, she lost because her campaign and core supporters unnecessarily alienated an important group of voters and relied too much on certain slices of the electorate that just did not turnout in the way she had hoped.




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