Hillary Clinton is cozy with Wall Street, right? After all, Goldman Sachs paid the former Secretary of State a quarter million bucks for a speech, money she accepted, she says, because that’s “what they offered.” Donald Trump has used this alleged coziness to paint a picture of Hillary as in bed with the 1 percent — and therefore obliged to do Wall Street’s bidding once in office. But Trump painted that Clinton picture in water colors and Clinton doused it with a bucket of wet reality in debate #1, sending Trump flailing to cover his own indebtedness to Wall Street.
Clinton gave a talk, got paid, cashed the check — transaction finished. But Clinton brought up the fact that by one credible account, Donald Trump carries Wall Street debt of $650 million. That’s a transaction that isn’t finished; that’s indebtedness. Trump responded that his “friends” say that’s “really not a lot of money.” But Americans surely think it is. Clinton persuasively suggested that an enormous debt owed to Wall Street’s 1 percent is valid reason to doubt Trump’s much-ballyhooed financial independence and his supposed freedom from crony capitalism. Clinton went into the debate with even many of her supporters thinking Wall Street was an Achilles heel for her. She came out of the debate having transferred her Wall Street problems to her opponent.