Hillary Clinton is supposed to be a strong, tough woman, yet for some reason she has to be hidden away and only come out for safe speeches where she won't get questions from the press.
In recent weeks, the media has jumped on statements made by Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. Why? Because they're all obviously running for president and they have made themselves available to the press. When the media asks them ridiculous questions about President Obama's patriotism or evolution, they answer, because they're there to answer the questions in the first place.
Clinton is not.
She came close at her recent Silicon Valley speech, when she answered questions from Recode columnist Kara Swisher, but they were softballs. The two even high-fived after Swisher told Clinton she "interviewed President Obama last week and I'm eager to interview another president."
So suffice it to say, Clinton wasn't going to get any questions about accepting donations from foreign governments for her foundation or whether she thinks late-term abortion is acceptable or whether she believes George W. Bush loves his daughters.
Instead, Clinton has avoided the press (and even Americans until last week, as her first public appearance in 2015 was a month earlier in Canada), and only emerged for two speeches in two friendly venues. The first was to women in tech who say discrimination is the reason for fewer women going into the industry. The second was to EMILY's List, a group dedicated to getting pro-abortion choice Democratic women elected.
She did not take questions from the general press either.
Nor did she address any of her current scandals in either speech. The past few weeks have not been good to Clinton. First it was discovered the Clinton Foundation took millions from foreign governments. Then we found out Clinton paid women in her senate office, on average, 72 cents for every dollar a man earned. Finally, this week, we learned that Clinton exclusively used a private e-mail address during her time as Secretary of State.
And it wasn't like the media pretended none of those things happened. The New York Times broke the story on the e-mail address. Though the other two scandals were broken by traditionally right-leaning outlets, Bloomberg, the Washington Post, NPR and other traditionally left-leaning outlets picked them up.
A lot of that probably has to do with getting the stories out now, a year before the rush of the 2016 campaign season, but don't expect Clinton's primary opponents (a Vice President Joe Biden backer said Clinton would "die by 1,000 cuts" over the e-mail story) or Republicans to forget by then or let them go.
For now, Clinton's strategy of avoiding the press is paying off. She can give carefully crafted speeches to sympathetic audiences with minimal pushback from the mainstream media and avoid articles and news cycles about something she said. It's a good strategy for her, but one the rest of the media should be more frustrated over.
But at some point she's going to have to start taking questions, and if she doesn't figure out now what the press might ding her on, she'll figure it out later — when the election is much closer. Meanwhile, her Republican and Democratic opponents will (presumably) have many of their worst gaffes out of the way, having been able to prepare for what's to come.