Exactly why the Washington press clique has always had it in for Hillary Clinton has never been entirely clear.
Legend has it that Mrs. Clinton's problems began after the arriviste First Lady turned down an invitation from Sally Quinn -- wife of legendary Washington Post editor Ben Bradlee and czarina of the city's cocktail party circuit. Maybe so, maybe not.
The current political situation looks like this: As long as Clinton sits tight, insisting she hasn't decided if she's running for president, potential Democratic challengers are checkmated. So dominant is her lead in opinion polls that nobody else can raise money.
With the electoral map trending strongly Democratic in 2016 and Republican infighting making it appear the party will nominate either a right-wing crank or a nonentity masquerading as one, the presidency appears to be hers for the asking. But there are still roadblocks.
As Bob Somerby summarizes in his Daily Howler blog: "Hillary Clinton is too damn rich to be running for president!"
Following ABC's Diane Sawyer, a celebrity journalist earning more money than LeBron James -- a reported $20 million a year -- the Post spent last week belaboring Bill and Hillary Clinton's lofty income, often without doing the most basic kinds of due diligence.
"Clinton's rarefied life could be a liability in campaign," was the headline above Philip Rucker's June 23 report. It expressed concern that the former Secretary of State's Washington home is "appointed like an ambassador's mansion." Which, um, is precisely what it used to be.
A few days later came "How the Clintons went from 'dead broke' to rich." Rucker's third effort complained about the "grotesque" and "obscene" amounts Hillary earns giving speeches -- money which, the Post neglected to point out, most often goes directly to The Clinton Foundation, the family's widely praised charitable endeavor.
Indeed, if you visit the organization's website, you'll learn that President and Secretary Clinton are currently matching all gifts, "dollar for dollar."
Nevertheless, columnist Ruth Marcus demanded that Hillary "Just. Stop. Speaking. For. Pay."
"You don't need any more (money)," she explained.
If you go on TV, you can see multimillionaire pundits -- some of whom inherited their jobs from famous parents -- explaining that Hillary Clinton can't relate to somebody like you.
But did she say that she wasn't "truly well off" with all this loot?
No, what she said was that unlike a lot of fat cats she wouldn't name, the Clintons do pay ordinary income taxes.
Arkansas Times columnist Gene Lyons can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.