Clintons, we’ve learned, don’t believe that laws apply to them. Over the last week we learned yet another example of this adage. The day of her Senate confirmation Secretary of State Hillary Clinton established a private email account in order to evade using one issued by the government. By doing so, Clinton’s communications remained private, even after her communications were subpoenaed by the government during an investigation on Benghazi.
The political class not totally in Clinton’s pocket are understandably and justifiably outraged. National Journal‘s Ron Fournier even went so far to wonder,
Perhaps Hillary Rodham Clinton shouldn’t run for president.
Maybe she should stay at the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation, where the former secretary of State could continue her life’s work of building stronger economies, health care systems, and families. Give paid speeches. Write best-selling books. Spend time with Charlotte, her beloved granddaughter.
Because she doesn’t seem ready for 2016. Like a blast of wintry air in July, the worst of 1990s-style politics is intruding on what needs to be a new millennium campaign: Transparent, inspirational, innovative, and beyond ethical reproach.
It’s clear that the use of private email with sensitive material related to foreign policy is inappropriate. The State Department, even under Clinton’s tenure understood that. The Federalist (with a tip-off from @CuffyMeh on Twitter) reminded Americans of a diplomatic incident which, in 2012, was barely noticed, but in 2015 only goes to highlight they hypocrisy of the Clintons.
Although Hillary Clinton and her allies may be claiming that her private e-mail system is no big deal, Hillary’s State Department actually forced the 2012 resignation of the U.S. ambassador to Kenya in part for setting up an unsanctioned private e-mail system. According to a 2012 report from the State Department’s inspector general, former U.S. ambassador to Kenya Scott Gration set up a private e-mail system for his office in 2011.
The inspector general’s report offered a scathing assessment of Gration’s information security practices — practices that are eerily similar to those undertaken by Clinton while she served as Secretary of State.
The State Department’s firing of the Ambassador wasn’t unjustified but the Obama administration’s willingness to look the other way for the same offense is inexcusable.
The Obama administration claims they were unaware of Hillary’s use of a private email account during her tenure as Secretary of State. Playing dumb, a time-honored tradition of the Obama administration when a scandal hits, only serves to make both parties look bad. By stating the Obama administration was unaware of the actions of its own cabinet members it appears that administration officials were never in communication with their own Secretary of State.
Despite not being willing to acknowledge prior knowledge of Clinton’s private email use, the Obama administration also aren’t willing to take the fall. Administration officials plainly stated that Clinton did not follow administration policy. If Obama White House officials aren’t willing to take a political hit on this, despite the fact that the President can’t seek another term, imagine how far they’ll be willing to stick their necks out after Clinton formally announces her candidacy.
Comment below: Do you think “Email-gate” will end Clinton’s run for the White House?