Hillary Clinton has a reputation as a thief and a liar on the dark web. The former first lady and current Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton is the target of several hateful Facebook groups, including “Stop Hillary in 2016,” “Americans Against Hillary Clinton.” Hashtags like #NeverClinton, #NeverHillary, and #CrookedHillary are being used by Twitter users to express their disgust.
Clinton supporters aren’t just sitting on the sidelines waiting for someone else to take action. Correct the Record, a pro-Hillary super PAC, stated in April that it will invest more than $1 million in staff and infrastructure for a digital task force to combat internet attacks against Clinton and her allies. The group, dubbed Barrier Breakers 2016, will “engage in online messaging for Secretary Clinton and strike back against assailants on social media,” according to a news release announcing the endeavour. What’s the worst that might happen?
As a result of this, Clinton’s alleged inability to inspire support was given credence for the first time. She and her friends’ willingness to spend enormous sums of money to thwart her opponents was revealed. Laughter and sarcasm erupted. According to progressive web series The Young Turks, “They’ll pay $1 million to go out there and attack average folks who support Bernie Sanders” when the news first came, John Iadarola mused.
Correct the Record was eager to clarify that it has no plans to launch its own attacks. A spokesman for the super PAC, Elizabeth Shappell, told The Daily Beast in April that the group’s focus is on spreading messages in support of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. No sponsored public communications, Correct the Record maintains, and it can lawfully collaborate with the Clinton campaign. Staying positive, it claimed, was the best way to combat internet attacks on Clinton and her supporters. But how precisely is the super PAC seeking to accomplish this—and will it succeed?