Showing posts with label Email Scandal. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Email Scandal. Show all posts

Saturday, August 22, 2015

[COMMENTARY] Contentions Is Hillary Clinton Finished?

That may seem like a wildly premature question in the summer of the year before the presidential election. To which I would respond: It’s too early to know the answer the question, but it’s not too early to ask it.
I say that because the extraordinary developments surrounding Mrs. Clinton’s private email server, which we now know contained material classified as Top Secret and is now in the hands of the FBI. It was on August 11 that the FBI took possession of Clinton’s server hardware and three thumb drives in her lawyer’s possession, which are said to contain copies of everything she turned over to the State Department. In addition, experts say that tens of thousands of emails she deleted may be recoverable. Which means Mrs. Clinton has now lost control over events, which is precisely what she was trying to ensure when she created her own homebrew computer system in the first place.

    Here’s some of what we know so far:
    • Mrs. Clinton, in attempting to cover up her actions, has lied on multiple occasions.\
    • Two veteran prosecutors in the Justice Department’s National Security Division are overseeing the investigation. One of them helped manage the prosecution of David H. Petraeus  (the retired general and former CIA director was sentenced to probation earlier this year and fined $100,000 after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor charge of mishandling classified materials.)
    • Experts say it’s a virtual certainty that her server was compromised by foreign intelligence services.
    If you want to understand the gravity of the situation, I’d urge you to watch this interview with Robert Baer, a former CIA operative and CNN national security analyst. Mr. Baer pointed out that if he had sent a document like the one Hillary Clinton had on her server over the open Internet he’d get fired the same day, escorted to the door and probably be charged with mishandling classified information. When asked if this situation was a “deal breaker” for Clinton’s presidential candidacy, Baer said, “As a national security employee, a former one, yes.”
    “I can’t tell you how bad this is,” he added. “A lot of things get talked about, a lot of gossip, but having documents like this sent across the Internet, it could be hacked very easily and probably were hacked, is a transgression that I don’t think the president of the United States should be allowed to, you know, have committed.”
    Bob Woodward, who knows about such things, said that the Hillary Clinton email scandal “reminds me of the Nixon tapes. Thousands of hours of secretly recorded conversations that Nixon thought were exclusively his …. Hillary Clinton initially took that position, ‘I’m not turning this over, there’ll be no cooperation.” Now they’re cooperating. But this has to go on a long, long time, and the answers are probably not going to be pretty.”
    That rather understates things. What we’ve seen so far has not been pretty at all. And with the FBI driving this investigation, things may get a whole lot less pretty for Mrs. Clinton. I understand the argument of those like Ross Douthat of the New York Times that “I simply do not believe that the Obama Justice Department is going to indict the former secretary of state and Democratic front-runner for mishandling classified information, even if the offenses involved would have sunk a lesser figure’s career or landed her in jail.” Still, in a career marked by scandal, this one has the potential to be politically lethal. We’ll know soon enough if it is.

    Thursday, August 20, 2015

    [VIDEO] Yarmuth: E-mail issue could 'upend' Hillary Clinton campaign

    LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS 11) -- Kentucky's only Democratic representative in Congress is expressing concern about Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's e-mail controversy, calling it "very confusing," and potentially a disqualifying scandal for her candidacy.
    "I just never feel I have a grasp of what the facts are," US Rep. John Yarmuth (D-Ky. Third District) told WHAS11 on Wednesday. "Clearly, she has handled it poorly from the first day. And, there's the appearance of dishonesty, if it's not dishonest."
    Clinton has been dogged by questions about her use of a private e-mail server while she served as U.S. Secretary of State, denying that the unsecure server was ever used to send or receive classified information.
    "We have turned over the server," Clinton said to reporters on Tuesday. "They can do whatever they want to, with the server to figure out what's there or what's not there."
    "But we turned over everything that was work-related. Every single thing," Clinton said.
    Yarmuth said the controversy is happening early enough in the campaign, that as long as Clinton is being truthful and did not use her personal e-mail server for classified materials, the issue can "boil over."
    "But, I still think there is a chance this could upend her campaign," Yarmuth cautioned.
    In her Tuesday news conference, Clinton said the only people talking about the e-mail controversy are the media -- which is not letting up.
    "I think if she intentionally misled or lied to the American people and did something that was clearly against rules, and knowingly did it against rules, if that is the ultimate conclusion, then I think she has disqualified herself," Yarmuth said.
    The five-term Democratic congressman from Louisville said he expects Clinton to be the Democratic nominee, but has not yet endorsed her.

    Email Scandal Deepens: Surprise: State Department Can't Find BlackBerrys of Clinton's Closest Aides, Say They Were Probably Destroyed

    Surprise: State Department Can't Find BlackBerrys of Clinton's Closest Aides, Say They Were Probably Destroyed - Katie Pavlich
    Do old phone models get turned in, replaced and ultimately destroyed? Yes. Does it make a bad situation surrounding Hillary Clinton's wiped out personal email server look worse? Absolutely. 
    According to a report published in The Hill late yesterday, BlackBerry devices belonging to Clinton's closest aides were likely destroyed. 
    State Department BlackBerry devices issued to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's aides Cheryl Mills and Huma Abedin have likely been destroyed or sold off, the department said in a court filing on Wednesday.

    Mills and Abedin “were each issued BlackBerry devices,” department Executive Secretary Joseph Macmanus wrote in the filing.

    The department, however, “has not located any such device,” and believes that they would have been destroyed or removed from the department's control.

    “Because the devices issues to Ms. Mills and Ms. Abedin would have been outdated models, in accordance with standard operating procedures those devices would have been destroyed or excessed,” Macmanus added.

    State Department spokesman John Kirby confirmed later on Wednesday afternoon that the two former officials’ devices were returned to the department after they left office.

    “They belong to the United States government, and when you leave an agency you just turn it in,” Kirby said. “So yes, they were turned in. Where they are now I couldn’t begin to tell you.

    “It’s also likely, because this was a while ago, that those devices may have been destroyed,” he added. “I don’t have the records of it because they were old and outmoded and often times we purchase new devices” in those circumstances.
    And here's this little nugget:
    In the same court filing, the State Department confirmed its previous claim that Clinton used a personal BlackBerry during her time in office that was not issued by the federal government. 
    You know what that means? That Clinton was using an unsecure device, which contained top secret classified information, with an unsecure personal email system and server.
    Last week we learned the personal server Hillary Clinton was forced to turn over the the FBI was wiped clean of data beforehand. The good news is, the FBI can recover at least some of what was erased.
    Meanwhile, Clinton Press Secretary Brian Fallon is trying to argue that any classified information the former Secretary of State was in possession of was given to her as a "passive recipient of unwitting information."

    Sunday, August 16, 2015

    [VIDEO] Robinson: Clinton’s Claim to be Victim of Partisan Attack ‘Doesn’t Ring So True’

    Ball: Email scandal causing tensions within her campaign
    Sunday’s Meet the Press panel said Hillary Clinton’s claims of partisan attacks on her don’t “ring so true” and that the private email story that has dogged her since March is causing tensions within her presidential campaign.
    Last Friday, Clinton joked about her private server at the State Department and said the investigation into her was petty politics as usual.
    “It’s hard to claim this is all just a partisan witch hunt when the Justice Department under a Democratic administration is looking into the whole email mess,” Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson said. “So, that doesn’t ring so true.”
    After months of refusing to turn over her private server, Clinton decided last week to give it to the Justice Department. The Clinton campaigned has struggled to move past the email story and responding to it politically has caused some disagreement between Clinton supporters, The Atlantic’s Molly Ball said.
    “And the fact that this story has not gone away has really worried a lot of people in the inner circle. You do have this tension within the campaign,” Ball said. “And so, you know, then it turns into an organizational mess which is what bogged down her campaign in 2008.”

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