In her soon-to-be-released 2016 election memoir, Hillary Clinton takes on her numerous enemies and opponents — and supporters, including then-Vice President Joe Biden, who criticized her campaign for its supposed neglect of middle-class voters.
CNN was able to buy an early copy of “What Happened,” Clinton’s firsthand account of her election loss to President Trump, which is scheduled to go on sale next week. In one excerpt cited by the network, Clinton disputes Biden’s critique — citing his own role in her campaign.
“Joe Biden said the Democratic Party in 2016 ‘did not talk about what it always stood for — and that was how to maintain a burgeoning middle class,'” Clinton wrote. “I find this fairly remarkable, considering that Joe himself campaigned for me all over the Midwest and talked plenty about the middle class.”
Biden’s office declined to comment on the jab.
After considering and eventually ruling out running himself, Biden campaigned for Clinton in the general election. This past March, he offered his assessment of the Democratic Party’s inadequate messaging in the election.
“What happened was that this was the first campaign that I can recall where my party did not talk about what it always stood for — and that was how to maintain a burgeoning middle class,” Biden said during an appearance at the University of Pennsylvania. “You didn’t hear a single solitary sentence in the last campaign about that guy working on the assembly line making 60,000 bucks a year and a wife making $32,000 as a hostess in restaurant.”
In another previously leaked excerpt, Clinton also singles out her primary election rival, Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., who later endorsed Clinton and campaigned for her in the general election. Clinton said Sanders’s attacks caused “lasting damage” to her candidacy, ultimately “making it harder to unify progressives in the general election and paving the way for Trump’s ‘Crooked Hillary’ campaign.”
Elsewhere in the book, according to CNN, Clinton cites the “rash” statements of then-FBI Director James Comey, who accused her of carelessness in handling classified emails, and muses about whether President Obama should have more forcefully responded to Russia’s meddling in the election.
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