Clinton's Credibility Crashes
Hillary Clinton's attempt yesterday to quash the brewing scandal over her State Department emails failed miserably. She has obviously retained at least one bad habit from her time in the Obama Administration -- tardiness. Her press conference started an hour late.
Her surreal press conference took place with the backdrop of the United Nations. The first question went to a reporter from Turkey who asked if Hillary would be going through this if she were a man.
What an absurd question! This has nothing to do with her sex. There is an ongoing congressional investigation into the deaths of four Americans and we are still trying to find out what the former secretary of state knew about the Benghazi attacks.
Instead of burying the story, Hillary resuscitated it with the news that she deleted tens of thousands of messages. She insisted she had nothing to hide, yet she also insisted that the server will remain hidden.
There were numerous inconsistencies in her remarks. For example:
- Hillary deleted personal emails between her and husband Bill. "No one wants their personal emails made public, and I think most people understand that and respect that privacy," Hillary said. But a spokesman for the former president said Sunday that Bill Clinton has sent only two emails in his entire life, both during his presidency.
- Hillary said that she used the personal account because she didn't want to carry two devices. But at an event in Silicon Valley two weeks ago, the woman who deleted thousands of personal messages and who couldn't be bothered to carry two devices said: "I don't throw anything away. I'm like two steps short of a hoarder. So I have an iPad, a mini iPad, an iPhone and a Blackberry."
- The former secretary of state, fourth in the line of presidential succession, claimed she never compromised security by sending classified messages from her personal server. Government security experts aren't buying it. Moreover the State Department claims it will take months to review the messages Hillary did release in order to redact sensitive information.
As I listened to Hillary's statement and her handling of questions, her response started to sound a lot like, "I did not have Internet relations with that server!" In short, Clinton's credibility just crashed.
Rep. Trey Gowdy, chairman of the House select committee investigating the Benghazi attacks, upped the ante yesterday after watching Clinton's press conference. Gowdy told CNN that he is going after the private email accounts of Clinton's top aides at the State Department, including Cheryl Mills, her former chief of staff, Jake Sullivan, then-deputy chief of staff, and Huma Abedin, Hillary's long-time confidant.
Gowdy said, "We are going to seek any private email that relates to official business, and I don't care about wedding cakes. But any work that could have been done on private-to-private accounts for those State Department employees we know had private accounts."
Unprecedented? Not Really
Supporters of President Obama's appeasement policy toward Iran are coming unhinged in their reactions to Senator Tom Cotton's letter to Iranian leaders. Senator Dianne Feinstein said, "This is a highly inappropriate and unprecedented incursion into the president's prerogative to conduct foreign affairs." Harry Reid said, "It is unprecedented for one political party to directly intervene in an international negotiation."
Senator Cotton's letter simply explained the facts about how treaties are made with America. The senators who signed it were not attempting to conduct their own secret negotiations in contravention of the administration.
But that is exactly what Senator Ted Kennedy did in 1983 when he sent a close friend to Moscow to negotiate with the Soviets.
That's what then-Senator John Kerry did in 1985 when he and former Iowa Senator Tom Harkin traveled to Nicaragua and embraced the communist Sandinistas.
That's what House Speaker Jim Wright did in 1987 when he invited Sandinista leader Daniel Ortega to Washington, D.C.
In 2002 three House Democrats flew to Baghdad and declared that we should take Saddam Hussein at "face value." In 2007 then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi flew to Damascus to conduct her own talks with Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad.
The Constitution makes it clear that Congress, and especially the Senate, has a role to play in shaping America's foreign policy. A public letter containing nothing more than a brief constitutional lesson is hardly unprecedented and certainly not nefarious.
As Senator Cotton explained, "The only thing unprecedented is an American president negotiating a nuclear deal with the world's leading state sponsor of terrorism without submitting it to Congress."
Please take a moment today to encourage Senator Cotton. Call his office at (202) 224-2353 and thank him for his leadership.
Lessons From Oklahoma
There is legitimate disgust and outrage at the news of University of Oklahoma fraternity members chanting racist remarks, including the n-word. The president of the university took immediate action -- suspending the fraternity and expelling two students.
The n-word should be a relic of the past. Not just for stupid white boys, but also for hip hop artists and gangster rappers who put out hundreds of songs a year that repeatedly drop the n-bomb and refer to women with disgusting and dehumanizing names. These "artists" make millions doing this, as do the corporations that produce their music.
Marc Morial, president of the Urban League, said this morning on MSNBC, "It's not right when a black singer says it, it's not right when a drunk redneck says it." Morial added that he has worked for years to "retire the word, eliminate the word from our vocabulary." My hat goes off to him.
I only wish more civil rights leaders would join him in calling out these rap artists for the poisonous attitudes their music spreads among our nation's youth. President Obama should lead the way.