This week is turning out not to be a good one for out Democratic presidential frontrunner and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. First, the State Department discovered an email chain that Clinton did not hand over, and then they find additional emails about the Benghazi terror attack. Clinton’s aides also have handed over copies of their emails most of which they used private account and Clinton’s server. Finally, on Sunday, Sept. 27, 2015 Clinton appeared on NBC News’ Meet the Press where she let off some steam about the ongoing scandal, harkening back to the 1990s and the attacks against her then. At the same time, her husband Former President Bill Clinton taped interviewed aired on CNN’s “Fareed Zakaria GPS” where he blamed the scandal on the Republicans and news media.
The Democratic frontrunner was in the hot seat with Meet the Press host Chuck Todd, answering questions predominantly about the scandal including the discovery of a new chain of work emails. Clinton had no real answer just excuses about how she missed them and did not handover the email chain. Clinton said, “There was a transition period. You know, I wasn’t that focused on my email.”
The discovery has brought new questions to the scandal about her forthrightness to the American public and in her deposition last month about when she actually started to use the private server. The new emails were exchanges with then commander of the United States Central Command Gen. David H. Petraeus in January and early February 2009, with emails from Jan. 28 to Feb. 1 coming from her new server, although she testified she did not start using until March 18, 2009, nearly two months later.
Clinton blamed the confusion of setting up the new server in the basement of her home in Chappaqua, N.Y. for the reason the email chain was lost. Clinton explained, “It apparently took a little time to do that. And so there was about a month where I didn’t have everything already on the server and we went back, tried to, you know, recover whatever we could recover. And I think it’s also fair to say that, you know, there are some things about this that I just can’t control. I am by no means a technical expert. I relied on people who were.”
Clinton emphasized that she was the subject of attacks while First Lady, saying, “During the ’90s, I was subjected to the same kind of barrage. When I ran for the Senate, they overlooked all of that. I was elected senator after going through years of back and forth.” The one thing Clinton did refuse was any conspiracies countering her previous views while first lady that every attack was a partisan Republican conspiracy against her and her husband. When Todd asked more about the new emails prefacing the question, “an alternative explanation that has sort of been circulating,” Clinton annoyed replied, “Another conspiracy theory?”
Former President Clinton in his interview on CNN’s “Fareed Zakaria GPS” seemed to blame the scandal on Republicans and the news media saying, “They thought the only way they could make it a race was a full-scale frontal assault on her. And so this email thing became the biggest story in the world.” The Hillary defended her husband’s remarks, “I love my husband and, you know, he does get upset when I am attacked. Of course, I take responsibility. It was my choice. It was a mistake back when I did it.”
Every other day there are new revelations in the email scandal, Todd asked about “the feel of a drip, drip, drip” from the scandal and asked Clinton to reassure “that there’s nothing else here.” Clinton admitted, the continued developments “is like a drip, drip, drip,” but would not reassure that there would not be any more discoveries only giving the vague response, “that’s why I said, there’s only so much that I can control.” She also placed the blame on her staff if any emails are discovered she did not originally hand over as part of the approximately 30,000 given to the State Department in December 2014. Clinton commented about the sifting and decision making process, “I didn’t want to be looking over their shoulder. If they thought it was work-related, it would go to the State Department.”
This past week has been the drip, drip, drip, Todd and Clinton used to describe the daily dose of new information about the scandal. On Friday, Sept. 25, The State Department confirmed they discovered a chain of emails she previously failed to disclose receiving them from the Defense Department. Clinton exchanged the emails with retired Gen. David Petraeus. The emails began just before Clinton became Secretary of State in January 2009 and continued through February 2009 after she was already assumed her cabinet post.
Also on Friday, The State Department announced that in their review of the emails Clinton handed over has discovered more emails relating the Benghazi terror attacks from Sept. 11 2012. The State Department are describing the number of emails discovered as a handful. The emails were missed the first time around because Clinton originally handed them over as 55,000 print pages and were hand searched and categorized. The State Department found these emails now after they were scanned and searchable through a database. These emails were handed over to the House Select Committee on Benghazi and they will be made public. The State Department handed over 925 emails, a majority relating to Libya.
Last week, it was made public that Clinton’s aides who used private email accounts or Clinton’s server have finally handed over their emails to the State Department, amounting to 100,000 pages in total. The State Department informed Judge Rudolph Contreras about the submissions in a court brief filed on Friday, Sept. 18. Former Deputy Chief of Staff Huma Abedin handed in 23,000 pages of emails, Senior Advisor Philippe Reines gave 70,000 pages and Chief of Staff Cheryl Mills submitted 11,870 pages. The emails were submitted this past summer, Abedin submitted them by Sept. 11, Mills by Aug. 12 and Reines had them all in on July 28. The emails will not be publicly posted, but will be available by request after classified information is redacted.
The FBI is now investigating whether Clinton’s aides sent classified information through their private email accounts. An email from April 2011 about Libya during a “phased checkout” from Benghazi because of rebels attempting to unseat President Muammar el-Qaddafi is at the heart of the investigation. The email had an update from “Africa Command of the Department of Defense” a Clinton aide wrote the email and forwarded it to Abedin should have been marked as classified.
There are also another few emails including one about “North Korea’s nuclear weapons” and “United States drone strikes in Pakistan,” that should have been marked top secret. Although the emails were not hacked, sending them on an unsecure server was a risk to national security and they possibly broke laws by using it, which are the reasons Clinton’s private email server, has become an issue.
Meet the Press Transcript – September 27, 2015, NBCNews.com