Ten Republican candidates for president in 2016 will debate Thursday for first time. Spend any time listening to Democratic frontrunner Hillary Rodham Clinton this past week, though, and it would seem like only one really matters: Jeb Bush.
As billionaire businessman Donald Trump thunders his way to the top of the summertime polls, Clinton is instead focused on the former Florida governor as one of the most likely Republican nominees.
Clinton repeatedly slammed Bush by name on Tuesday after he questioned spending public money on women’s health issues, a more direct attack after she slyly stung him last Friday by using the name of his super PAC and slogan of his campaign — Right to Rise — to paint him as setting back the cause of black Americans.
“People can’t rise if they can’t afford health care. They can’t rise if the minimum wage is too low to live on,” Clinton told the annual meeting of the National Urban League.
For months, Clinton and her team have tried to keep her above the political fray. But with her approval rating sinking in several polls, they’ve moved to reframe the race as a choice between two different ideologies rather than a referendum on her family foundation, email usage and other controversies.
Trump’s rise has complicated that effort: While Democrats generally view the carnival-like atmosphere the billionaire businessman brings to Republican field as a positive for Clinton, there is concern that his dominance has allowed other potential nominees to get a free pass on such issues.