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Maureen Dowd on 2016 elections: "King of winging it" vs. "queen of homework"

Maureen Dowd on new book
Maureen Dowd on new book 05:39

In the battle between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd is dubbing this year’s election as “the king of winging it versus the queen of homework.”

“Her problem is she’s too tightly controlled, and his problem is he’s out of control. And his problem is he’s too bold, and her problem is she’s sometimes not bold enough,” Dowd said Tuesday on “CBS This Morning.”


Dowd, who has covered the two presidential candidates for decades, is now out with a new book called “The Year of Voting Dangerously: The Derangement of American Politics,” where she writes that Trump and Clinton’s faceoff is “the most epic battle of the sexes since Billie Jean King faced off with Bobby Riggs,” referring to the hyped and televised tennis match from 1973.

During former President Bill Clinton’s 1992 campaign, the Pulitzer Prize winner described strategists trying “to figure out a way to mend her image problems.” Additionally in 1999, Dowd wrote about Trump as he contemplated a run for president, saying the businessman was “pure id, no trepidation, no guilt, no P.C. restraints.”

“For centuries, women were considered temperamentally and biologically unsuited to hold higher office or even vote. And so now in this campaign, we have a candidate who gets their feelings hurt very easily and is pouty and gossipy and bitchy and sometimes hysterical, and worries constantly about hair care – but it’s not the woman,” Dowd said, chuckling. “And then we have one who’s very controlled and hawk and wears tailored suits, and it’s not the man.”

Bill Clinton on Hillary's health 04:52

Dowd said the “alt-right” movement has tried to make Clinton’s gender an issue in this campaign cycle, but with the former secretary of state, that’s not the problem. Most recently, transparency became an issue after Clinton left the 9/11 memorial service early on Sunday and appeared to stumble toward her motorcade. It was then revealed, two days after her diagnosis, that Clinton had pneumonia​.

“The problem with the health issue for her is, it’s a microcosm of a very destructive pattern she’s had since I started covering her in ’92 where she just is so secretive. She has her own wall. Trump has his wall, and she has her wall of you know, ‘Don’t tell the press anything. They’re just out to get us.’ And then it takes a relatively mundane thing, and it snowballs into this thing where her foes and the press are in this frenzy,” Dowd said.

In a recent ABC News/Washington Post poll, voters were asked which of the candidates were more honest and trustworthy: Forty-six percent chose Clinton, and 41 percent said Trump.

“Historically, voters are more fearful and depressed and anxious than they have ever been, and they are trying to decide who to vote against, not who to vote for. And they have these two candidates with historically high unpopularity ratings, and so, it’s a very sad and anxious election that way,” Dowd said.

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