Clinton’s health brings new low point to campaign trail

Matt Poe

Ah, the campaign trail that keeps on giving. Just when I thought we had exercised all forms of mockery and insults toward Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, this election’s presidential candidates, this massive gift basket of Clinton’s “failing” health landed on our doorsteps to serve as more fodder.

I thought we wouldn’t get something this tasty until the debates begin in late September and the smorgasbord of bashing would rev back up again. I guess we can call this incident the appetizer.

Here’s the deal: Clinton has been battling pneumonia for the past few weeks, and the speculation of her health has drawn an array of reasonable worry from many. This comes along with some off-the-wall conspiracies that we won’t get into because it’s a waste of my time and yours.

Her bout with pneumonia reached a tipping point for some when the Democratic presidential nominee became overheated during a visit to Ground Zero on 9/11 to pay tribute. This resulted in her having to leave the ceremony early to rest. The incident also resulted in her subsequent cancellation of a scheduled trip to California.

It’s not breaking news to say that this election season has been the wackiest in recent memory. Maybe even ever. Both sides have thrown every accusation in the book at one another, along with the kitchen sink. But this incident with Clinton’s health and the backlash is furthering me toward a tipping point in election coverage that I didn’t believe possible.

Look, the questions about her health are a serious concern, and they should be for anyone running to become leader of the free world. We’ve had a long history of presidents who had secret bouts with health issues, from Woodrow Wilson to John F. Kennedy and many more.

Clinton and her campaign need to be transparent with the general public about what she’s dealing with and how serious it is. I don’t think it will get to the point where she drops out of the race, but in an election where we’ve seen crazy, accompanied by his pals asinine and insane, you can’t count the possibility out.

I can’t imagine the physical, emotional and medical toll that running for president or winning the presidency has on a person. It’s much more than you or I can estimate. In Clinton’s case, however, we’ve taken the bullets used to attack her campaign and are now using those for her health. And that’s where I draw the line.

It’s one thing to attack someone’s credibility, issues, messages or even their character —these tactics are nothing new in the endgame of politics.

But when we begin to attack someone’s momentarily poor health as a character flaw, it’s lazy, moronic, and speaks volumes to the people who do so. Check social media if you think I’m wrong.

I’ve been pretty adamant about my displeasure and dislike of Trump in these columns. I don’t like Trump for a lot of reasons that are too many to list here. But if The Donald came down with some type of illness that put his candidacy in jeopardy, (which many people probably wish would happen, just as much as they do for Clinton) I would come to his defense, regardless of how I feel about him or his politics.

I’m not a Clinton apologist either. There’s a lot of things about her and her campaign I’m not sold on or don’t agree with.

Here’s a bewildering thought that has flown over many heads: people get sick. Everyday people and all the way up to the people who run for president. Shocking, I know. Attacking a person’s character for any sickness or health-related issue says a lot more about our character. More than it does theirs.

Matt Poe is a columnist, contact him at [email protected]