Almost all of these statements are some variation on Clinton being a D.C. insider. And Clinton gets positive marks on each of them. She even gets positive marks for "She has close ties to Wall Street," which is a statement that could just as easily appear in an attack ad against Hillary Clinton.
Clinton's best marks, in fact, are on the only statement actually mentioning Washington: "She has lived in Washington and worked in the federal government"; 78 percent say that's an advantage, versus just 20 percent who said it's a disadvantage. And despite President Obama's approval rating being around 40 percent, about six in 10 Americans say Clinton's work in the Obama administration is a good thing for her.
(Caveat alert: Some people will argue that saying something is an "advantage" for Clinton isn't the same as saying you approve of it — that it's more a statement of political analysis than personal preference. That might be, but we doubt the answers would be significantly different if it was the latter question.)
Clinton's overall favorable rating in the poll, we would point out, is 52 percent. In other words, plenty of people who otherwise don't really like her think her lengthy career in government and insider status is a feather in her cap rather than a liability.
Those numbers call into question whether it's really a bad thing to be a "Washington insider." We suspect it is a bad thing when the candidates aren't very well-known. In that case, voting for the non-Washington candidate is the easiest way to show your contempt for Congress.
When it's businessman David Perdue versus Congressman Jack Kingston in the Georgia GOP Senate runoff, that "congressman" label probably isn't helpful to people who don't really know Kingston. (We have made this argument before in regards to whether the Republican Party would actually nominate a confirmed tea partier for president. We were dubious.)
When it comes to someone like Clinton, though, it's hard to argue that her being a Washington insider — or even a Clinton, for that matter — is a massive problem for her.
In fact, this poll suggests that it just might help.