Expert's Take On Why Hillary Clinton Didn't Win In 2016 Has Twitter Divided

It seemed like a plot line too outlandish even for a soap opera: An established political figure loses her own presidential bid to a rookie rival best known for his failed casino and his reality show. But it was real, all right – Hillary Clinton was defeated in a shocker run against Donald Trump in 2016. Naturally, there was lots of speculation about the reason for the loss. Some theorized that the former secretary of state brought too much baggage with her from previous administrations; others pointed to Donald Trump's branding as a businessman who would support the middle class rather than special interests.

One of Clinton's closest allies has a different theory, however. Speaking on "The View" on October 6, Huma Abedin opined that Clinton was at a disadvantage based on her gender. Women in politics, she suggested, are held to expectations that would never be imposed on men. "All these impossible standards, you know, she needs to be taller, shorter, talk this way," she said. "This is annoying, you know, she looks angry when she speaks. It was almost like you couldn't win no matter what you said." 

Abedin, who was Clinton's campaign vice chair during the election, added that these standards feed into the public perception of what an American president should be. "We can't see women as commander-in-chief," she said. "We close our eyes and you think of president and you think of a man."

Twitter, as always, had lots of reactions.

Not everyone agrees that Hillary Clinton lost the election because of her gender

Did Hillary Clinton's gender cost her the presidency? Huma Abedin is convinced of it, and some respondents on Twitter echo her sentiments. There were a number of "I agree" and "She's right" reactions. Added a user, "Hillary was criticized for the exact traits male politicians are praised for. So many women are." 

But many other commenters feel that Clinton lost for reasons other than being female. "Maybe it's just that she's one of the most unlikeable people in this country," suggested a user. Another writer simply stated, "I am a woman and would never vote for her...just sayin'!" A third pointed out that Clinton's campaign strategy was her downfall: "Uhhh...What about not campaigning aggressively in Wisconsin, Florida and Pennsylvania and calling 1/2 of Republicans deplorable?" Quite a few tweets proved that detractors still blame Clinton for the deaths of four Americans in the 2012 terrorist attack in Benghazi. "Not being horrible and taking responsibility for your own mistakes is def an impossible standard," snarked a writer.

Whatever the reason, the former first lady may not be defeated yet. A political expert recently said that Hillary Clinton may be revving up for a 2024 presidential run, which may appeal to Democratic voters who are disappointed with President Joe Biden's performance in office.