Inside Monied Clintonworld, Grief Yields to Cashing In on Trump
As Trump’s Inauguration beckons, stunned members of Clinton’s inner circle are, rather surprisingly, embracing the economic opportunities ahead.
BY WILLIAM D. COHAN
The bewildering interregnum between Donald Trump’s improbable electoral-college victory and his forthcoming “philosophical” inaugural address has prompted unprecedented soul searching within Hillary Clinton’s sprawling campaign and extended universe. Clinton has appeared to console herself with the occasional outing—a dinner at Rao’s, say, or taking in The Color Purple or catching up with Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen or hypothetically running for mayor of New York City—while her aggrieved supporters have fervently attempted to assuage their pain on social media. On Twitter, “The People’s Choice” remains a popular meme. (Clinton won the popular vote by nearly 3 million ballots.) Chelsea Clinton, who is reportedly being groomed for the commencement of her own highfalutin political career, recently told Refinery 29 that she has not lost hope. “Everything we believed before the election, we still believe,” she said. Clinton continued: “Use those emotions to engage and organize and advocate to protect and advance what you think matters most.”
But perhaps the most gobsmacked people within Clintonworld are the legions of insiders who devoted years of their life to her political career with the tacit expectation of some form of reciprocity once the former secretary of state entered the Oval Office. Axios co-founder Mike Allen recently surmised the Clinton Cabinet that would have been. It included campaign chairman John Podesta as possibly the next secretary of state; campaign director Robby Mook as a senior adviser; and surrogate daughter cum adviser Huma Abedin as deputy chief of staff. (As I recently reported, Abedin has become a recent object of much frustration within Clinton’s inner circle.) And as Trump’s inauguration beckons, emotions are reaching the level one might expect. “I think it’s very important to understand that, while we’re all guided by a respect to the office of the president, and we are,” said Robert Zimmerman, a longtime Clinton fund-raiser and member of the Democratic National Committee, “what is stunning is the lack of respect the president-elect has shown for his office. That’s what’s so concerning to me.”
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