Hillary Clinton Still Doesn’t Get It

Nice tweet, but she still seems trapped on the wrong side of the bridge to the 21st century.

NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 15: Former U.S. Secretary of State and first lady Hillary Clinton speaks at a press conference announcing a new initiative between the Clinton Foundation, United Nations Foundation and Bloomberg Philanthropies, titled Data 2x on December 15, 2014 in New York City. Data 2x aims to use data-driven analysis to close gender gaps throughout the world.
National Journal
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Ron Fournier
March 5, 2015, 1:19 a.m.

A cornered Clin­ton is a craven Clin­ton, which is why we should view Hil­lary Rod­ham Clin­ton’s latest pub­lic re­la­tions trick with prac­ticed skep­ti­cism. “I want the pub­lic to see my email,” she tweeted Wed­nes­day night. “I asked State to re­lease them. They said they will re­view them for re­lease as soon as pos­sible.”

If she wants us to see her email, why did she cre­ate a secret ac­count stored on a dark serv­er re­gistered at her home?

(RE­LATED: More Se­cur­ity Fears Sur­round Clin­ton’s “Homebrew” Email Serv­er)

If she wants us to see her email, why didn’t she give State all of her email rather than a self-cen­sored frac­tion of the cor­res­pond­ence?

If she wants us to see her email, Clin­ton should turn over every word writ­ten on her dark ac­count(s) for in­de­pend­ent vet­ting. Let some­body the pub­lic trusts de­cide which emails are truly private and which ones be­long to the pub­lic.

Like everything else about the re­sponse to this con­tro­versy, Clin­ton’s tweet is re­min­is­cent of the 1990s, when her hus­band’s White House over­came its wrong­do­ing by deny­ing the truth, blam­ing Re­pub­lic­ans, and de­mon­iz­ing and bul­ly­ing the me­dia. It’s a shame­less script, un­be­com­ing of a his­tor­ic fig­ure who could be our next pres­id­ent — and jar­ringly in­ap­pro­pri­ate for these times.

(RE­LATED: Meet the Non-Clin­ton Clin­ton De­fense Team)

In the 15 years since Bill Clin­ton left of­fice, the in­ter­net has made al­most every­body a re­search­er and a journ­al­ist—equipped to judge wrong­do­ing for them­selves and in­sist upon ac­count­ab­il­ity. We can now spot the lies ourselves, stand up to bul­lies, and re­mind our lead­ers that two wrongs don’t make a right. The ac­tions of Hil­lary Clin­ton and her team raise the ques­tion: Is she trapped on the wrong side of the bridge to the 21st cen­tury?

This is part of a pat­tern of bad be­ha­vi­or. My former em­ploy­er, The As­so­ci­ated Press said Wed­nes­day that it was con­sid­er­ing leg­al ac­tion over years of stone­walling its re­quests for gov­ern­ment doc­u­ments cov­er­ing Clin­ton’s ten­ure as sec­ret­ary of state. The AP has sought her full sched­ules and cal­en­dars and for de­tails on the State De­part­ment’s de­cision to grant a spe­cial po­s­i­tion to a long­time Clin­ton aide, Huma Abedin, among oth­er doc­u­ments, the New York Times, re­por­ted. The old­est AP re­quest was made in March 2010.

“We be­lieve it’s crit­ic­ally im­port­ant that gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials and agen­cies be held ac­count­able to the voters,” said AP’s gen­er­al coun­sel, Kar­en Kais­er. “In this in­stance, we’ve ex­hausted our ad­min­is­trat­ive rem­ed­ies in pur­suit of im­port­ant doc­u­ments and are con­sid­er­ing leg­al ac­tion.”

(RE­LATED: Maybe Hil­lary Clin­ton Should Re­tire Her White House Dreams)

This is the prob­lem: If she wants us to see her emails, Clin­ton would show us her emails. If she wants to be trans­par­ent, she’d be trans­par­ent. If she wants to be a mod­ern, for­ward-look­ing lead­er who earns the trust of a dis­il­lu­sioned pub­lic, she’d call off her at­tack dogs, stop spin­ning, and do the right thing. 

She would re­turn the un­seemly for­eign dona­tions to the Bill, Hil­lary & Chelsea Found­a­tion.

She wouldn’t call them “my email.” She would know that the emails of a pub­lic of­fi­cial be­longs to the pub­lic. They’re ours. Cough ‘em up.


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