In the wake of the news that the FBI will not recommend charges be brought against Hillary Clinton for her use of a private email server, say what you will, but there is no denying the durability of the Clinton machine. In case after case where Clinton detractors (read: haters) have thought, “This time we have them,” the Clinton machine chugs along, breaking the speed limit, driving recklessly, and parking in No Parking zones, but always managing to avoid meaningful consequences.

I once read that Hillary Clinton eats scandals for breakfast. Yesterday’s announcement by the FBI was Wednesday morning’s breakfast for the former Secretary.

10 Jan 2006, Dallas, Texas, USA --- Gennifer Flowers arrives at a Dallas law firm in this November 14, 1997 file photo. Flowers, a former lover of U.S. President Bill Clinton, on January 9, 2006 lost her effort to revive a defamation case against his wife, Senator Hillary Clinton, and two of the former president's top aides. REUTERS/Flor Cordero/Files --- Image by © FLOR CORDERO/Reuters/Corbis

Image by © FLOR CORDERO/Reuters/Corbis

When Bill Clinton was running for president in 1992, Gennifer Flowers came forward with allegations that she had had an affair with Gov. Clinton. I recall saying to a coworker at the time, Clinton might as well drop out. Stick a fork in him. He’s done. Later that year, he defeated the incumbent President George H.W. Bush.

Then there was Whitewater, a failed real estate deal involving Madison Guaranty Savings and Loan, owned by Clinton friends Jim and Susan McDougal. A Senate committee was formed to investigate. The McDougals were convicted. Jim Guy Tucker, who succeeded Clinton as governor, was convicted. Susan McDougal served 18 months in prison for refusing to answer questions before the Senate Whitewater Committee. The Clintons were never prosecuted.

Of course there’s the Monica Lewinsky scandal, which led to the impeachment of Bill Clinton by the House of Representatives. He avoided removal from office when Senate Republicans failed to round up the two-thirds vote needed, resulting in acquittal.

Barely a week before the FBI’s announcement about Hillary Clinton’s emails, the final report on Benghazi was issued by House Republicans, essentially clearing the former Secretary of any wrongdoing.

These are just the highlights. There are dozens of others, ranging from serious (Paula Jones, Kathleen Willey) to silly (Hairgate).

bill_clintonSo, what are we to make of all this? It’s hard to imagine anyone could look at this pile of evidence and not be troubled. But at the same time, you’ve got to give them credit. Whether they are skating right up to the edge or just plain skating (on any charges that stick), they seem to have an ability to operate just inside the bounds of the law and even stray past the bounds but still walk away unscathed.

Regardless, as President John Adams said, “Facts are stubborn things.” Even the most ardent Clinton apologist must at some point recognize that there have been some shady dealings going on with the ultimate Washington power couple.

Nevertheless, in light of the FBI’s July 5th announcement, it’s clear that Hillary Clinton will be the Democratic nominee for President. And notwithstanding the #NeverTrump movement, Donald Trump will be the Republican nominee for President. For the many not enamored of either candidate, it’s bewildering.

It can’t be reasonably argued that either candidate is particularly trustworthy. But neither can it be reasonably argued that either candidate wishes any harm to America. So, if you strip away the Clinton scandals and you strip away Trump’s tendency to manufacture his own “facts,” what you are left with is a decision about which candidate is most qualified to lead this Nation.

I remain convinced that that person is clearly Hillary Clinton.