Now here’s something to drag MSNBC out of its gaffe-cum-apology torpor: Krystal Ball, one of the hosts on MSNBC’s afternoon roundtable show “The Cycle,” has issued a strong plea to Hillary Rodham Clinton: Stay out of the 2016 race, you corporate tool!

Mind you, those words are the abridgment of the Erik Wemple Blog. Here are Ball’s: “Is someone who sat on the rabidly anti-union board of Walmart for six years the right person to restore workers’ rights?” Ball asked. “Is someone who recently took $400,000 to give two speeches at Goldman Sachs the person we need to wrest control of the asylum back from the banking inmates?” And: “In a time when we badly need to be inspired and rallied and made to believe that America can once again be true to the American dream, we need someone who is mission-driven, who is clearly passionate, living and breathing and feeling in their bones the plight of the worker, of the middle class. That person is not Hillary Clinton.”

It’s Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, says Ball, who showed a famous clip of her speaking of the social responsibilities of industrial titans.

“Don’t run, Hillary, don’t run,” closed Ball.

Smart argument here. In a 2007 New York Times piece, Michael Barbaro noted that Clinton was careful not to highlight her stint as a Walmart director (1986-1992). And even though she pushed for women in management positions and environmental issues, she was “largely silent” on the company’s hostility toward unions.

The monologue made for compelling television, if only because so much of the press on Clinton’s prospects for 2016 dwells on her inevitability. Or her already-compelling polling numbers. Yet Ball’s call doesn’t come straight out of left field: Smart political observers have been discussing possible challenges from Clinton’s left flank, though Ball now leads the pack in bleeding-heart quotient.


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