This week in crazy attacks against against Hillary Clinton, conservatives are criticizing the former-public defender for doing her job. In 1975. A recording of an interview Clinton did in the 1980s with journalist Roy Reed has emerged, thanks to conservative website The Washington Free Beacon. In the interview, Reed asks Clinton about her time as a public defender in Arkansas, and specifically about a case in which she had to defend an alleged rapist.
The defendant, a 42-year-old man, was accused of raping a 12-year-old girl after sedating her with alcohol. In the recording, Clinton discusses the case and the methods she used to defend the alleged rapist. Because it was her job to defend him. Conservatives seem to be missing this last part, and are trying to make the case that Clinton can't have been an advocate for women and children if she defended someone who allegedly raped a young girl.
Clinton's critics are also focusing on her defense tactics, which apparently involved discrediting the 12-year-old girl's testimony. The Washington Free Beacon writes:
In a July 28, 1975, court affidavit, Clinton wrote that she had been informed the young girl was “emotionally unstable” and had a “tendency to seek out older men and engage in fantasizing."
The attacks don't seem to be sticking too well. Since the release of the recording, many people are coming out in defense of Clinton, arguing that the problem lies with the system, rather than the defender. Amanda Marcotte writes in a piece for Slate:
Defense attorneys use this strategy because it works, as can be routinely demonstrated. As long as juries keep acquitting based on this myth that women routinely make up rape accusations for the hell of it, defense attorneys will continue to use it. The problem here is a larger culture that promotes rape myths, not defense attorneys who exploit these myths in last-ditch attempts to get acquittals for rapists who have overwhelming evidence against them.
Marcie Bianco agrees in a piece for PolicyMic, arguing that it is Clinton's ability to do her duty, devoid of "stereotypical 'female passion'" that has raised the criticisms. Bianco writes:
This is a case in which conservatives have found fault not with the system that enables rapists to walk away with their crimes, but with the woman who successfully did her job. It's not so impossible to imagine that what conservatives take most issue with was that Clinton remained unflappable — that she did not exhibit any stereotypical "female passion" that made her incapable of completing her job.
Many Twitter-users are also coming out in favor of Clinton, arguing that she was doing her job, and that "all lawyers should be defending" her.
Unfortunately, logic and reason have never deterred conservatives from lobbing attacks against Clinton. At least this time, they aren't saying she's brain damaged.