The Only Line That Matters From Hillary Clinton's Trump Attack

June 2nd 2016

Kyle Jaeger

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton made her case against Donald Trump during a fiery speech on Thursday. She charged that the GOP presumptive nominee is fundamentally unfit for the presidency, and one line from her speech sums up that point perfectly.


"The stakes in global statecraft are infinitely higher and more complex than in the world of luxury hotels," Clinton said.

It was a joke — a jab at Trump's luxury hotel business — but at the same time, the line speaks to Clinton's main argument: Trump's risk-centric business mentality and lack of experience in politics makes him a liability, not an asset, to America's global status.

"There’s no risk of people losing their lives if you blow up a golf course deal," Clinton said early in her speech. "But it doesn’t work like that in world affairs."

"In real estate development, taking on risk is the only way to make money," Vox reports. "You finance a project with borrowed money, and you try to silo each one as its own LLC. That way, if a given project fails, you declare bankruptcy and reorganize."

But politics is a different beast that ought to be approached with caution, Clinton argued during her speech.

By drawing contrasts between Trump and herself, the Democratic front-runner is appealing to undecided voters — including Republicans turned off by Trump — in an effort to widen her national lead, Vox reports. (Recent polls show that she's done an effective job in that respect thus far; a new Quinnipiac University survey suggests that Clinton has effectively slowed Trump's post-Indiana primary momentum in the past month.)

Clinton continued in her speech:

"Imagine Donald Trump sitting in the Situation Room, making life-or-death decisions on behalf of the United States. Imagine him deciding whether to send your children into battle. Imagine if he had not just his Twitter account at his disposal when he’s angry, but America’s entire arsenal. Do we want him making those calls – someone thin-skinned and quick to anger, who lashes out at the smallest criticism?"

Drilling down this point and emphasizing Trump's foreign policy weaknesses appears to be a central element of Clinton's strategy to defeat Trump. As a former Secretary of State and longtime diplomat, Clinton's relative strength in this department is proving especially pertinent at this stage of the election season, with less than 160 days left until election day, the Washington Post's Phillip Bump assessed.

Trump, on Twitter, took issue with Clinton's speech, claiming that it misrepresented his foreign policy positions.

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