Elizabeth Winkler, Quartz – September 11, 2016
Hillary Clinton may be, in the words of Barack Obama, the “most qualified candidate” to ever to seek the presidency, but it’s now commonplace to suggest her leadership leaves something wanting. The Guardian notes that she “lacks authenticity and the kind of charisma required to unite a nation.” The Daily Beast asks, “Can Hillary’s one-percent charm win over voters?” And on Reddit, users wonder: “How can Hillary Clinton be so far in the lead with so little charisma?”
Linda Feldmann, Christian Science Monitor – August 13, 2016
Why is Clinton so challenged on the likability front? Women voters blame sexism, echoing the findings of political scientists who say women candidates are more constrained in their behavioral options than men, because of gender norms. Female politicians, for example, have to be careful not to get too “huggy” with voters.
Tim Hains, Real Clear Politics – May 11, 2016
“And that is not to say that she is not preferable to Donald Trump, because at this point I would vote for Mr. T over Donald Trump, but she will be in big trouble if she can’t find a way — and maybe I’m wrong, maybe a real person doesn’t exist underneath there. I don’t know. There are politicians who are either rendering their inauthenticity in real enough time to apear authentic, and then there are politicians who are rendering their inauthenticity like if you have a Mac and you want to play a Microsoft game on it, there’s this weird lag.”
Amber Phillips, Washington Post – March 31, 2016
Luckily for Clinton (and every other woman aspiring to public office), there are tangible ways female politicians can convince voters they’re both qualified and likable. That’s according to the nonpartisan Barbara Lee Family Foundation, which attempts in a new study to pinpoint exactly how voters measure this hazy, intangible quality of likability among women officeholders, so they could give such advice.
Deborah Tannen, TIME – March 15, 2016
Clinton has been in the public eye for so long, journalists have long since formulated a storyline about her, as former Democratic presidential candidate Michael Dukakis recently observed. Their view—and portrayal—of her as “remote and programmed,” he said, is “nonsense” and impervious to accounts by those who know or meet her that she is actually warm, smart and funny.
Scarlet Neath, Marie Claire – February 26, 2016
Sexism in the 2016 election is more subtle, but no less present. The talk about Clinton’s physical appearance has been replaced with ad nauseam questioning of her likability andtrustworthiness. But what makes this sexist pill harder to swallow is that the person giving her a serious run for her money is unapproachable, unaccommodating, and unkempt: Bernie Sanders.
Hannah Kozlowska, Quartz – February 24, 2016
Instead of joining the ranks of some older feminists who are eager to see a female president for the first time in the US, these young women are opting en masse for Sanders, a candidate who captures their imagination with his promises of political revolution.
Michelle Betters, Slate – February 16, 2016
There are many bizarre things about Trump’s success so far; but one of the weirdest is that, despite the candidate’s long history of unapologetic lady bashing, a non-trivial number of women across the country actually want him to be the next president.
Maureen Dowd, New York Times – February 7, 2016
Hillary Clinton first grabbed the national spotlight 47 years ago as an idealistic young feminist, chiding the paternalistic establishment in her Wellesley commencement speech. So it’s passing strange to watch her here, getting rebuffed by young women who believe that she lacks idealism, that she overplays her feminist hand and that she is the paternalistic establishment.
Jill Abramson, The Guardian – February 5, 2016
Why do powerful women need to show their softer side or shed tears to be considered fully human?