Inside Hillary Clinton's Doomed Campaign

eBook - 2017
Average Rating:
Rate this:
"It was never supposed to be this close. And of course she was supposed to win. How Hillary Clinton lost the 2016 election to Donald Trump is the tragic story of a sure thing gone off the rails. For every Comey revelation or hindsight acknowledgment about the electorate, no explanation of defeat can begin with anything other than the core problem of Hillary's campaign--the candidate herself. Through deep access to insiders from the top to the bottom of the campaign, political writers Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes have reconstructed the key decisions and unseized opportunities, the well-intentioned misfires and the hidden thorns that turned a winnable contest into a devastating loss. Drawing on the authors' deep knowledge of Hillary from their previous book, the acclaimed biography HRC, Shattered will offer an object lesson in how Hillary herself made victory an uphill battle, how her difficulty articulating a vision irreparably hobbled her impact with voters, and how the campaign failed to internalize the lessons of populist fury from the hard-fought primary against Bernie Sanders. Moving blow-by-blow from the campaign's difficult birth through the bewildering terror of election night, Shattered tells an unforgettable story with urgent lessons both political and personal, filled with revelations that will change the way readers understand just what happened to America on November 8, 2016"--Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York :, Crown,, 2017
ISBN: 9780553447095
Characteristics: 1 online resource
Additional Contributors: Parnes, Amie
Alternative Title: Axis 360 eBooks


From Library Staff

From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

Dec 09, 2017

I liked this book. It had a somewhat breezy pace to it in the style of the book Game Change. Of course, I found myself screaming at the book - or at Hillary - mostly "what were you thinking?!" You get an idea as to why she lost. And I say this having voted for her - but given all her problems of not being to articulate why she wanted to be president, not really trusting her staff, hiring Huma Abedin and giving her so much power, choices she made before she announced her run (Wall Street speeches, Clinton Foundation) and the fact that a lot of people were just tired of hearing from her and about her - my main take away was that this woman should never have run for president.

Oct 27, 2017

Really enjoyed this book. Liked how they analyzed the different successes and shortcomings of the campaign. I really thought it did a good fair job at analyzing what went right and wrong with the Clinton campaign.

Oct 05, 2017

Book needed editing. Forget the specific candidate in this analysis of a campaign. The real message is that the nature of campaigning is changing to "moneyball" econometrics to guide decisions about allocation of political resources and which messages to use. This book illustrates the how and why Clinton's campaign was flawed, but political pros will learn from their errors to hone the future runs for office.

Sep 29, 2017

Well, OK. If you can stick with the action in this book, with it's day-to-day ups-and-downs for several hundred pages, you're a better person than I am. I was only able to finish it by skipping large swaths of the weeping and chest beating of the main characters.

VaughanPLDavidB Sep 27, 2017

For those who didn't follow intently during the campaign, this is an excellent detailed account of the day-to-day trials, triumphs and tribulations of HRC's failed presidential bid. With her experience, dedication, determination, and a buffoon for an opponent, how could Hillary lose? And yet she did. She sowed the seeds of her failure even before the official campaign began, from her private e-mail server (sorry Hillary, but that was a legitimate concern), to high paid speeches to Wall Street, to her involvement with the Clinton Foundation. Each one of those things hamstrung her before she even started. And once she did start, there were her assumptions about the Blue Wall of states that she felt were a lock, her decision to write off a large segment of the electorate (working class whites), even her "basket of deplorables" comment, all worked against her.

For an electorate in an anti-establishment mood, she was the wrong candidate at the wrong time, and it didn't help that the DNC clearly had their thumb on the scale in her favor during the nomination process. That just cemented in many voters minds that her candidacy was entirely self-serving - power for power's sake - and that she had no real vision for the country.

This book effectively foreshadows HRC's own book "What Happened" where she blames everyone else for her failure. It was Comey, it was Russia, it was Bernie Sanders, it was misogyny, it was the media. No, Hillary, it was you.

Sep 25, 2017

Great behind the scenes look at the Clinton campaign and how it operated during the 2016 presidential campaign. Amazing access provided on the pivotal moments of the campaign trail.

athompson10 Jun 29, 2017

Insightful and fascinating. The authors pull no punches regarding Hillary Clinton's flaws and the errors and fundamental problems of her campaign. A must-read book for political junkies.

debwalker Jun 02, 2017

She was robbed! Ditto for the planet.

Jun 01, 2017

Please see my review, under the "Summary" tab.
Update: Aug 2017 - looks like recent website changes have eliminated the "summary" tab, and my review with it. Sorry.

May 18, 2017

Sometimes traditional methods are more effective. In 2016 Bill--his generation's best political campaigner--was repeatedly shunted aside by younger, data-driven campaign acolytes seeking to replicate Obama's 2008 tech domination over McCain. The former president cautioned, unfortunately without success, that resources should be adjusted to reach groups which in the end made the critical difference in Hillary's loss. (Though subsequent revelations--not covered by this book--established that her American opponents almost certainly guided Russian hacking and disinformation to these critical districts).
The doomed Clinton campaign is one more example of America's seemingly unquestioning reliance on tech and analysis over ears on the ground and native intelligence. A similar story could be told for the CIA, as well as for many businesses (such as Target's disasterous foray into Canada), under which experienced old hands are underappreciated and desk jockeys move ever upward.

View All Comments


Add a Summary

Jun 01, 2017

"Shattered - inside Hillary Clinton's doomed campaign", is written by the same two journalists who wrote H.R.C, a sympathetic look at Clinton's time as Secretary of State. "Shattered" is over 400 pages long, with 60 (useful) pages of references and index. The book suffers not from its length, but from its undue partiality for Hillary Clinton's point of view. Yes, it exposes the drama, the selfishness, the bickering, the savage and unproductive in-fighting of all Hillary Clinton campaigns, but it presents those as Hillary's _burden_, not as the natural _result_ of Clinton's inartful leadership.

The most obvious oversight in the book is the lack of analysis of the emails leaked from campaign chairman John Podesta. This treasure trove presented the inside story of the campaign, in the words of the players themselves. That data dump should really be the entire core of this book; instead the authors have virtually ignored it. Similarly, the authors wax about the "unfair" criticism of Clinton, over her taking money from foreign governments for her foundation, over her lucrative secret speeches to Goldman Sachs, over her private email server, and over collusion between her campaign and the DNC.

What the authors fail to point out is that each of those "unfair" criticisms originated from an explicit decision by Clinton - the decision to use her office to boost her private wealth, the decision to side with banks and refuse transparency about her commitments to them, the decision to try to evade the Freedom of Information Act with her private email server (the book offers the old and implausible excuse about "didn't want to carry two handsets" - in spite of the fact that Clinton has a "body woman" - an assistant who follows Clinton everywhere, and carries all phones and hand luggage for her. The private email server was really all about keeping her official emails away from the public eye for ever).

Then there's the horrible collusion between the DNC and the Clinton campaign to conspire against Bernie Sanders. Clinton complains endlessly about the email leaks but is apparently unable to understand the real problem is with her underlying anti-democratic actions. She still to this day has not apologized for her campaign's collusion with the DNC to rig the primary elections against Sanders. That one dishonest act alone should permanently disqualify Clinton from all politics in future, as a matter of both law and equity. Clinton ignores it, as though it never happened, as though it never led people to judge Clinton's dishonesty. Meanwhile, information continues to emerge about how Sanders would have easily defeated Trump in the general election (e.g.

Shattered is a long book, but not a particularly insightful one. In the end it makes the same mistake that candidate Clinton did - it assumes that voters would prefer a dishonest establishment candidate, over a dishonest disruption candidate. Clinton was so unpopular that her support actually went down when she appeared in public. For the last 6 months of the campaign, Clinton was virtually sequestered away from all press conferences, and all campaign rallies. She was terrified of unscripted interactions with voters, and avoided events where she might inadvertently find herself talking to a voter who had not been pre-selected and vetted.

In the end, Clinton comes across as just not very good at politics. She cannot foresee the consequences of her own actions, but will never accept that she is not good enough to engage in politics at the national level. "Shattered" does a poor job of presenting this, and there is a much better book waiting to be written.


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further


Subject Headings


Find it at SMCL

To Top