Skip to content
Subscriber Only

Hillary Clinton the Populist Begins Courting the Plutocrats

Clinton can't change the system unless she wins the election, and the only way to win the election is with the help of deep-pocketed allies.
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 29: Presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton was escorted out of the building after she delivered a speech during the David Dinkins Leadership and Public Policy Forum at Columbia University in Manhattan, NY April 29, 2015.

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 29: Presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton was escorted out of the building after she delivered a speech during the David Dinkins Leadership and Public Policy Forum at Columbia University in Manhattan, NY April 29, 2015.

Photographer: Kevin Hagen/Getty Images
Corrected

One of Hillary Clinton's biggest applause lines in her early days on the campaign trail has come when she talks about getting big money out of politics—even when she's talking to the big-money donors.

It's one of the paradoxes of a campaign that regularly employs populist rhetoric while courting plutocrats. Clinton can't change the system unless she wins the election, a campaign official argued, and the only way to win the election is with the help of deep-pocketed allies.