“Hillary Clinton Is Again Put on the Defensive Over Perceived Ties to Wall Street,” the New York Times frets today. Whatever could be going on here?

What is the deal, Democratic voters?

Dozens of prominent economists and academic experts have endorsed her plans to regulate the financial sector. Her policies would “try to prevent the problems of the future,” she explained in Thursday’s debate, in addition to reining in “the excesses of Wall Street.”

So why do so many voters not believe it?

As we all know, the ways of American voters are often dark and inexplicable. But is this a case of that? For a New York Times political analysis, this story is... what’s the word... dense?

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In an election year fueled by the anger over the growing gap between rich and poor, Mrs. Clinton, who is widely viewed as too close to the financial sector, seems an imperfect messenger for change. She has developed sophisticated policy proposals that many economists agree would aggressively regulate the financial sector, but they have collided with the image that Sanders supporters and other political rivals have painted of her: Wall Street’s friend and defender.

For those of you who have not taken Pseudo Impartial News Writing 101, “perceived” and “widely viewed” in this context are code words for “wrongly perceived” and “wrongly viewed.” So, what exactly could be driving the view of all of these dense voters that Hillary Clinton has “Perceived Ties to Wall Street?”

  • “The super PAC backing Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton drew $15 million of the $25 million it raised in the second half of the year from Wall Street sources.”
  • Hillary Clinton accepted $675,00 from Goldman Sachs for three speeches.
  • Wall Street firms have donated millions of dollars to the Clinton family foundation.
  • Hillary Clinton’s daughter lives in a $10 million apartment with her husband, a hedge fund manager.
  • Hillary Clinton recently served two terms as the U.S. Senator from New York, a job with a constituency that includes Wall Street. During that time she called for moderate tightening of financial rules but generally took a “hands-off approach to Wall Street regulation.”
  • “Since Mrs. Clinton and former President Bill Clinton entered national politics in the early 1990s, Wall Street has contributed more than $100 million to their political campaigns, charitable foundation and personal finances, according to a review by The Wall Street Journal.”

I am not one to rush to defend the critical thinking skills of the average American voter, but based upon these facts you would have to be fairly stupid not to perceive Hillary Clinton’s ties to Wall Street.

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Does this mean that Hillary Clinton will be weaker on Wall Street regulation than the Republican candidates? No.

Does this mean that Hillary Clinton is a paid shill wholly in Wall Street’s pocket who will do nothing but their bidding? No.

Do Wall Street firms donate tens of millions of dollars to political candidates without expecting that these donations will buy them some degree of political influence? No.

Hillary Clinton’s Wall Street ties are very real and it is disingenuous to pretend otherwise.

[Photo: AP]