By Becky Hogan
When Hillary Clinton launched herself back into the public eye this spring, it seemed her biggest liability might be her handling of Benghazi while she was Secretary of State, but then the Anthony Weiner campaign happened.
The Weiner drama has not only entangled one of Clinton’s closest advisers, Weiner’s wife Huma Abedin, but has also reminded the public of the Clintons’ own scandalous past.
After a month of news coverage that centered on how Clinton’s camp was handling the media blitz with regard to new revelations in Weiner’s online sexting scandal, the coverage of mismanagement at the Clinton Foundation has also been intense, although not nearly as frequent.
There’s no question it’s been a tough month for Clinton in terms of press, but is it really anything new?
Even Clinton’s 2008 campaign was plagued by infighting, finger pointing and scandal.
It appears Facebook users are yawning at the negative press that has followed Clinton:
The former Secretary of State has seen a decline in Facebook “Talked Abouts” since the revelations about Anthony Weiner emerged in late July. This could be read in different ways—either Facebook users are weary of the incessant drama that seems to follow Clinton or they’re willing to pass off the Weiner scandal as out of Clinton’s control.
Clinton allies say the potential 2016 presidential candidate has learned from her 2008 campaign and managed the current crisis from afar, distancing herself from Weiner while still quietly supporting Abedin.
But her critics paint a different picture—they claim that the drama and infighting that seems to follow Clinton has put her all over the tabloids instead of in the middle of substantive political debates.
This could be one reason Clinton has begun to speak out on key policy issues recently.
So is Clinton surviving the negative press this time around?
Clinton’s social followings took a hit in July amid the Weiner press coverage. But her Twitter following seems to have rebounded to its pre-scandal weekly gains since last week when she saw an uptick of almost 4,000 more Followers than the week before.
Her Facebook Likes have not done the same and remain at about half of what they were before the negative press on Weiner hit.
They say all publicity is good publicity; we’ll see if the old adage holds up when it comes to how Clinton’s public image resonates on social media.