You had to know it wasn’t going to be a good night for Hillary Clinton when she showed up for her presser at the Pearson Community Center in North Las Vegas clad in an orange jumpsuit.
My colorblind friend said the jumpsuit was red. I told him, “No. Look at the flag behind. Those stripes are red; the jumpsuit is orange.”
Coming off her amazing comment about Snapchat on Saturday in Iowa – “You may have seen that I recently launched a Snapchat account,” she said. “I love it. I love it. Those messages disappear all by themselves.”
OMG! Did she just say that?! Gee, if only Richard Nixon could have had Snapchat. Yes, indeed, those pesky messages just vanish into cyberspace and will never come back to bite you. Network servers on the other hand, are a little harder to joke about. You can never be too sure that everything is erased, or wiped, to use the jargon systems administrators use. Her “joke” was as near a confession of her guilt as we’re ever likely to get out of her.
We just didn’t think Hillary could get any funnier. The Bergen Record reported today that the Democrats consider Ted Cruz an easy target because he had the audacity to try to shut down the runaway government. Talk about David and Goliath. That’s the best they’ve got? Donald Trump is not as easy a target as they thought. He keeps coming on like a tank. The New York Daily News should take that red clown nose and plant it on Hillary.
The Democrats need to keep an eye on their own walking, talking target. Remember, you’ve read it here many times: John Kerry is waiting in the wings to take a second swipe at the presidency. Once he wins his Nobel Prize, he’ll step out of the shadows to take over from Hillary.
Meanwhile the Clinton Collapse keeps rolling on. “What difference does it make?” didn’t make a very convincing impression on the public. Neither did yesterday’s performance, where she stammered, flailed her arms and rolled her bulging eyes at the notion that anyone would question her trustworthiness. Or good judgment.
Fox News’ Ed Henry took the lead, noting that she’s blamed Republicans and she made a Snapchat joke. Shouldn’t she take responsibility?
“Look, I take responsibility,” she replied. “Look, I just told Jeff, in retrospect, this didn’t turn out to be convenient at all and I regret that this has become such a cause celebre.”
Not convenient at all. The truth never is.
“But this does not change the facts and no matter what anybody tries to say, the facts are stubborn. What I did was legally permitted, number one, first and foremost, okay? Number two, I turned over — out of an abundance of an attempt to be helpful — over anything that I even thought was even vaguely related. In fact, they’ve already concluded more than 1,200 of the e-mails I gave them have nothing to do with the work, and I said make them public. And that’s the process that one goes through to make them public. So, I know there’s a certain level of, you know, sort of anxiety or interest in this, but the facts are the facts.”
The “fact” is that the FBI has concluded that over 300 “hold classified information” e-mails were discovered, at least two of which hold information of a very high security classification. People with a security clearance culled them. And she had a lawyer without a security clearance store them. You’d think someone wearing an orange jumpsuit would realize that’s a problem.
Henry then had Clinton stammering over a question about another official report that she had Top Secret information:
“Ed, you’re not listening to me — Ed, if it were — well, if it were a government account, they would be saying the same thing. The fact — no, no, no. Well, look — first of all, that is not in any way agreed upon. The State Department disagrees. That happens all the time in these efforts to say what can go out and what can’t go out. That is a part of the ordinary process.”
If sending out classified information over private, unprotected servers is an “ordinary process” then the State Department has a big problem. Perhaps we should return to human couriers with attache cases handcuffed to their wrists. It couldn’t be any worse than sending e-mails that can be easily hacked.
“Everybody is acting like this is the first time it’s ever happened. It happens all the time. And I can only tell you that the State Department has said over and over again, we disagree. So, that’s what they’re sorting out and that’s what happens a lot of the times. But whether it was a personal account or a government account, I did not send classified material and I did not receive any material that was marked or designated classified, which is the way you know whether something is.”
“What you’re seeing now is a disagreement between agencies saying, you know what? They should have. And the other saying no, they shouldn’t. That has nothing to do with me. If it had been a government account and I said release it, we’d be having the same arguments.”
She’d be making the same arguments in a courtroom already. The FBI has stated that given the information they’ve seen so far, and it’s only the tip of the iceberg, that there’s no way the information could have been sent or received without the “Top Secret” designation.
Ed Henry kept after her.
“The FBI believes you tried to wipe the entire server. Did you try to wipe the entire — so that there would be no emails, no personal or no official?”
“Well, my personal e-mails are my personal business, right?”
Wrong. By sending personal and official e-mails using the same server, she legally loses control of the personal emails and she does not have the authority to personally decide what is and is not a government record, although she claimed she does.
Again, Henry asked her about the server being wiped
“Did you try to wipe the entire–so that there’d be no email, no personal and no official?”
“I don’t know,” she said. “I have no idea. What you – you mean, did I like wipe it with a cloth or something?”
Here, she made a mocking gesture of wiping a screen with a cloth.
I don’t know how it works digitally at all. I know you want to make a point. I will just repeat what I have said: in order to be cooperative as possible, we have turned over the server….we turned over everything that was work-related. Every single thing.”
“In order to be as cooperative as possible, we have turned over the server. They can do whatever they want to with the server to figure out what’s there and what’s not there. That’s for the people investigating it to try to figure out.”
And then she ended the press conference. The total time: 4 minutes and 40 seconds..
During the Snapchat controversy, Clinton said: “You know what, it’s not about emails or servers either — it’s about politics. I will do my part to provide transparency to Americans. That’s why I’m insisting 55,000 pages of my emails be published as soon as possible. I didn’t offer to answer questions for months before Congress. I just provided my server to the Justice Department. But here’s what I won’t do. I won’t get down in the mud with them. I won’t play politics with national security or dishonor the memory of those who we lost.”
What nerve – invoking the memory of the Ambassador Stephens and the others who died in Benghazi. This is the same Hillary Clinton who, as a Senator from New York, decried Pres. George Bush’s presence at a September 11th anniversary memorial.
“I won’t pretend that this is anything other than what it is: the same old partisan games we’ve seen so many times before. So I don’t care how many super PACs and Republicans pile on. I’ve been fighting for families and underdogs my entire life, and I’m not going to start now.”
What difference, at this point, does it make?
Then, yesterday, Clinton’s campaign stated that emails on the private server she used when she was Secretary of State contained material that is now classified, the clearest explanation thus far of an issue that has roiled her bid for the presidency.
At the same time, The Washington Post reported, “the campaign sought to downplay the disclosure by saying the material had been retroactively classified out of an abundance of caution by U.S. intelligence agencies.”
“She was at worst a passive recipient of unwitting information that subsequently became deemed as classified,” said Brian Fallon, a spokesman for Mrs. Clinton’s campaign.
Here we have yet another Hillary Howler: “unwitting information.” So this virtual freight train of classified information, stripped naked of its “Top Secret” cloak, “unwittingly” wandered into her e-mail and onto her public/private server? And finding a naked e-mail train on her server – GASP! – Hillary compassionately placed another “Top Secret” cloak upon it so it wouldn’t get “lost” again?
Platte River Networks, a 40-person company in Denver, Colo., was hired to handle the server in June 2013 after Mrs. Clinton left office. Platte River specializes in handling tech chores such as network monitoring and cybersecurity for banks, law firms and construction companies. The company’s Facebook page features photos of its sales team dressed as nurses and patients inspired by the 1975 film “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.”
Platte River Networks’ spokesman Andy Boian said yesterday that the company didn’t know about any classified material on the server.
The Clinton server was picked up at the Clintons’ home in New York and moved to a “secure data center in New Jersey,” where it operated until last week. The computer was operational when Platte River took possession of it. “It was an email server,” Boian said, “That’s what they used it for.”
Pointing to two emails that helped spark the FBI probe, the Clinton campaign said State Department officials considered the material unclassified at the time it was sent. The controversy, said Mr. Fallon, amounts to a dispute between different agencies within the Obama administration about what constitutes classified material and what should be released publicly.
The two emails in question were written by lower-ranking State Department officials and forwarded to Mrs. Clinton by top aides Jake Sullivan and Huma Abedin, who both now work for her Democratic presidential campaign.
An inspector general for the intelligence community said earlier this year he found four emails containing material that were classified at the time they were written.
Fox News on Wednesday identified two of them as being emails that already have been released publicly as part of an investigation into the death of the U.S. ambassador in Benghazi, Libya. Both the State Department and the Clinton campaign say neither was classified at the time they were sent to Mrs. Clinton.
“Nobody talks to me about it other than you guys.” Other than the F.B.I.
Will those two hapless Clinton aides, Sullivan and Abedin (wife of the King of Cringe, Anthony Weiner – did he introduce Hillary to Snapchat?), take the pratfall for Hillary? If convicted and sent to prison before Obama’s time is up, will he pardon her (almost certainly)?
Clinton is probably hoping that the laughter will die down by the time the primaries begin (in about six months or less).
If she wants the laughter to die down, she’d better burn that orange jumpsuit. Or it’s going to take its place in the Clinton skeletal closet alongside Monica Lewinksy’s infamous blue dress.