Posts Tagged ‘Politico’

A big update about Hillary’s emails

Friend —

Big news today: Remember a few months ago when the inspector general for the intelligence community claimed two of Hillary Clinton’s emails were “top secret”? Well, a new review from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence says that determination was flat-out wrong, and it’s critical that we make sure people know it.

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POLITICO: Key Clinton emails did not contain highly classified secrets, inquiry finds

The U.S. intelligence community has retreated from claims that two emails in Hillary Clinton’s private account contained top secret information, a source familiar with the situation told POLITICO.

The determination came from Director of National Intelligence James Clapper’s office and concluded that the two emails did not include highly classified intelligence secrets. Concerns about the emails’ classification helped trigger an on-going FBI inquiry into Clinton’s private email set-up.

“The initial determination was based on a flawed process,” the source said.

“There was an intelligence product people thought [one of the emails] was based on, but that actually postdated the email in question.”

A top expert in classification procedures called the development “an astonishing turn of events.”

None of Hillary’s opponents are going to be rushing to correct the record about this, which is why it’s so important for members of The Briefing like you to get the word out:

Thanks so much. Happy Friday!


Brian Fallon
National Press Secretary
Hillary for America



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There is nothing unusual about televising Congressional hearings.  When I was in elementary school, I came home to find my mom watching the Army-McCarthy hearings.  I did not understand what was happening, but TV was new to our house. Anything on the screen was miraculous and gripping to me. My mom believed what she was hearing from Joe McCarthy even though she was a Democrat.  Sometimes religion overpowered politics in our house.  McCarthy was Irish Catholic so he could not possibly be leading us all astray, could he?

McCarthy operated under a belief system that had nothing to do with the Vatican.  His credo was that the military and government agencies were infiltrated with “card-carrying” Communists.  Not only did he believe that the State Department, the Pentagon, information services, and military research facilities were crawling with seditious moles, he was an evangelist as powerful as Billy Graham at the time.

Of course he was wrong. He was wrong in his beliefs and in his methods, and he came to a sorry end but not before instilling an undercurrent of fear and paranoia among ordinary, patriotic Americans.  Perhaps some petition signed years ago,  maybe a union affiliation,  possibly an offhand remark at a party or in a bar – any innocent past action or comment could boomerang and become one’s undoing.  They spoke of him – the grown-ups did – in hushed tones.

Following an investigative report about the senator on his program, See It Now, Edward R. Murrow offered the following.

No one familiar with the history of this country can deny that congressional committees are useful. It is necessary to investigate before legislating, but the line between investigating and persecuting is a very fine one, and the junior Senator from Wisconsin has stepped over it repeatedly. His primary achievement has been in confusing the public mind, as between the internal and the external threats of Communism. We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty. We must remember always that accusation is not proof and that conviction depends upon evidence and due process of law. We will not walk in fear, one of another. We will not be driven by fear into an age of unreason, if we dig deep in our history and our doctrine, and remember that we are not descended from fearful men—not from men who feared to write, to speak, to associate and to defend causes that were, for the moment, unpopular.

Joseph R. McCarthy maintained a vise-like grip on the psyche of the nation until Army representative Joseph N. Welch finally stood up to him with the famous, “Have you, at long last, no sense of decency?”  Only then did his influence begin to erode.  Only then could our long national recovery commence.

Records of closed sessions, the ones we did not see on TV, were made public in 2003-2004, a full 50 years after they were held.  Senators Susan Collins and Carl Levin prefaced the documents thus.

Senator McCarthy’s zeal to uncover subversion and espionage led to disturbing excesses. His browbeating tactics destroyed careers of people who were not involved in the infiltration of our government. His freewheeling style caused both the Senate and the Subcommittee to revise the rules governing future investigations, and prompted the courts to act to protect the Constitutional rights of witnesses at Congressional hearings … These hearings are a part of our national past that we can neither afford to forget nor permit to reoccur.

Congress is always investigating something. Our two houses have a multitude of committees and subcommittees all busily pursuing information.  Sometimes committees work in tandem.  When the secretary of defense has a budget proposal to present, both armed services and appropriations committees need to hear the proposal and ask their questions.  Now that we have C-SPAN, our government at work – or not – has become more accessible than back in the day when McCarthy and Kefauver interrupted the soap operas.  It seems that important testimony should, in our information age, be easily accessible and visible.

Last night, Politico shared this.

Benghazi panel denied ex-Hillary aide’s request to publicly testify

Hillary Clinton’s former chief of staff Cheryl Mills had requested a public session to thwart GOP leaks.


The House Benghazi Committee rejected a request from Cheryl Mills, Hillary Clinton’s former chief of staff at the State Department, to have her testimony occur in a public session later this week, a source close to Mills said.

Mills’ desire for open testimony — a request made because she fears Republicans will leak selected information that casts her in a negative light — is just the first disagreement in what’s likely to be a tense session Thursday, when she appears before the panel a day before Jake Sullivan, Clinton’s top policy guru, is also hauled in for questions.

The private interviews with Clinton’s top brass represent the highest-profile grillings yet for the panel probing the cause of, or avoidable factors that could have led to, the 2012 terrorist attack on the U.S. Consulate in Libya that left four Americans dead.

Lawmakers — who don’t often attend the closed-door interviews with Benghazi witnesses, allowing staff investigators to take the lead — are making the rare move of returning to Washington, D.C., early from their summer break to be present for the interviews with Mills, who no longer works for Clinton, and Sullivan, who remains Clinton’s No. 1 policy staffer on the campaign.

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Wow! That’s one way to get them all back to DC and on the job. But what, exactly, is the job?  Originally, the Select Committee on Benghazi was assembled to find out what went wrong there and how to avoid similar incidents in the future.   That commission has been retrofitted for political reasons as Democrats on the committee made clear in a July 15 letter.

Select Committee Dems Call Out Republicans for Turning Political Turrets on Hillary Clinton

July 15, 2015
An article in The Hill today reveals a letter from Select Committee Democrats to their GOP counterparts accusing them of refitting the objectives of the committee from inquiry and prevention into a political weapon aimed at the former secretary of state.

Read more and see letter >>>>

So, while public, televised testimony is as old as TV networks in this country, the GOP is using its leadership power to prevent the public from hearing a witness.  This is unfair to Ms. Mills and to the nation.  Certainly all parties, including the media, are well-versed in cutting into broadcasts when sensitive testimony arises.  What is to be feared from broadcasting Cheryl’s testimony?

Given the true GOP agenda, throwing a veil of secrecy wholesale over the proceedings succeeds in accomplishing one objective, promoting the false and toxic allegation that Hillary Clinton and her staff have something to hide.

Hillary has made 55,000 pages of email available, has agreed to testify and answer all of the questions the committee might have, and has explained time and again her decision to use a private server.

Cheryl Mills is an accomplished attorney who served as legal counsel at the State Department and was referred to by another witness in hearings at the House Oversight Committee as the person who reminded him of the rules of engagement for department staff interacting with members of Congress.

Benghazi-Spin: Myth-Busting and Reality Check

May 10, 2013

Spin: Gregory Hicks, demoted for speaking out. Leaving aside for the moment that you chose to speak to a Congress person without a lawyer present as that terrible witch Cheryl Mills pointed out to be State Department protocol….

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Note:  Hicks did not name her, but we all knew who advised him.

She knows her stuff.  She also knows theirs, and that is why she asked for her testimony to be public. The GOP, and in particular, Trey Gowdy, should honor that request.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, left, leaves the White House after a national security team meeting with President Barack Obama on Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2010, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, left, leaves the White House after a national security team meeting with President Barack Obama on Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2010, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Someone should give us a reason why we should trust that we will see and hear all that we should.  When I see this in the Politico article,  I remember that statement above from Senators Collins and Levin.  I have a fear that it will be a 50 year wait before closed session documents are released.

Republicans did not wish to comment specifically on the Mills request but have said they’ll release the information after they’re completed their entire investigation and issued their final report.

Let Cheryl Mills testify publicly!



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When Politico fashions a story out of nothing but old scraps and ascribes their imaginary “shadow campaign” to Hillary, the internet burns up with commentary and articles about articles about the article.  The New York Times justifies its assignment of a single reporter to the Hillary Clinton beat with a Sunday Magazine feature, and both the article and the other-worldly cover draw such attention that the reporter, like a moon reflecting the light of the sun, is suddenly a celebrity herself appearing on CNN and C-SPAN and granting a self-congratulatory interview to a New York Times blogger about how she broke through into the Clinton inner circle.  Yet when a reasoned analysis of the subject of Hillary’s much maligned and largely unread honors thesis from Wellesley appears in two digestible parts in Forbes, like a tree falling in the forest, not a sound emanates.

I fully expected, upon wading into Ralph Benko’s The Secret Hillary Rodham Clinton, to find yet another right-wing slam complete with name-calling and labels galore.  Instead, to my astonishment, I found well-balanced and informative piece with a fair assessment not only of Saul Alinsky but also of the degree to which Hillary’s study of the man, his methods, and his mission impacted her political trajectory.

Links to Hillary’s thesis (a scan of a rough draft) have been available online for years.  In his opus, Mr. Benko provides yet another.  Not having linked to the hit jobs published by Politico and the NYT,  I provide these links without hesitation and dub them my must-reads for the month.  You may or may not agree with everything in Mr. Benko’s analysis,  but you will find yourself in an atmosphere of intellectual inquiry that has been rare in connection to any piece about Hillary Clinton in many a moon.

This Hillary has been a secret only to the extent that people have not gone on a search for her.  We can thank Mr. Benko and Forbes for shining a light here.

The Secret Hillary Rodham Clinton, Part I

The Secret Hillary Rodham Clinton, Part II

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When the temperatures are just right overnight, you can wake up one morning after a dense dew or rain and see a plethora of mushrooms, some quite healthy and large, where the day before there were none.  If the first two weeks of 2014 are any indication, we are likely to see a literary metaphor of this phenomenon around Hillary Clinton.

Last week in Politico, Maggie Haberman laced together a series of her 2013 articles and fashioned them into a heavily-laden “shadow campaign” which, of course, does not exist in actuality.  When that canvas broke open,  a mass of articles erupted based on her article or on portions of it just like mushrooms after an April shower.

This week, Politico unleashed what is fast becoming a torrent with an article by Amie Parnes and Jonathan Allen (in advance of their book, of course) about what they have dubbed a “hit list” despite the only quote from an unnamed Clinton insider calling it a a reward list (put together by staffers not by Hillary).  The title alone betrays an attitude toward Hillary, and the mushrooms are sprouting.

What the meme will be next week or the week after  is anyone’s guess save those who are planning it right now, but it appears that for the better part of 2014 there will be rains and ensuing mushrooms that feed on the moisture because there are some who cannot be satisfied with watching Hillary doing her splendid work in the here and now and seek somehow to part the cloak of invisibility she has drawn around her plans for the future.

US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Cli

I intentionally have not linked to these articles.  If you want to see them, you will have to do your own search.  Until Hillary is ready to make a statement about 2016, I continue to do what Hillary told us to years ago: watch and wait.  If she wants mists and clouds around her agenda,  I will not be seeding them for rain.

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Hillary Clinton-Headlined Fundraiser For Bill de Blasio Woos Donors To Fight Against Tea Party

Bill de Blasio’s big fundraiser with Hillary Clinton is Oct. 21 at The Roosevelt Hotel in Manhattan, and according to the invitation email, it’s them versus the right-wing bad guys.

hrc ap.jpg

“Our Republican Tea Party opponents are willing to spend whatever it takes to disrupt this campaign and distort Bill’s vision for bold progressive change. And this reception with Hillary Clinton will be one of the final opportunities we have to raise the funds we need to make it over the finish line on November 5th,” de Blasio Finance Director Ross Offinger says in the email.

“Every dollar of your ticket price goes towards making sure this campaign for progressive change has what it takes to send Bill to City Hall, and change this city so that it works for every New Yorker.”

De Blasio worked at HUD during the Clinton Adminstration and went on to run the former First Lady’s successful 2000 run for the U.S. Senate before becoming a city councilman and then public advocate over the course of his political career.


Here’s the full text of the invite:

Please Join
Hillary Rodham Clinton
at  an event in support of

Bill de Blasio
Democratic Candidate for Mayor of NYC

Monday, October 21, 2013
6:30pm – 8:30pm

The Roosevelt Hotel
45 East 45 St
New York, NY

Contribution Levels
Co-Chair: Raise $25,000
Co-Chairs are invited to a private VIP reception with Hillary Clinton and Bill de Blasio with photographs

Co-Host: Raise $10,000
Co-Hosts are invited to a photo line with Hillary Clinton and Bill de Blasio

Friend: $4,950
Supporter: $2,000
Guest: $1,000

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Hillary Clinton to speak at Center for American Progress anniversary

Hillary Clinton is pictured. | AP Photo

Clinton’s remarks come as she debates whether to launch a presidential campaign. | AP Photo

Hillary Clinton will be the featured speaker at the tenth anniversary event later this month for the Center for American Progress, the influential Washington-based progressive think tank and activist group, POLITICO has learned.

Clinton’s remarks at the Oct. 24 event come as she continues to debate whether to launch a second presidential campaign – and put her before a critical policy group that is key for candidates looking to address progressive Democrats.

The president of CAP, which in its earliest incarnation was focused heavily on ending the Iraq war, is Neera Tanden, a longtime adviser to Clinton, who worked on her 2000 U.S. Senate race in New York and later on her 2008 presidential campaign. Tanden and CAP founder John Podesta, Bill Clinton’s former chief of staff, are also expected to speak.

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There are some redundant questions that arise in the vicinity of the Clintons.  Chelsea appears to have put one of them on a back burner by telling Glamour Magazine that she and hubby Marc will try to make 2014 “the year of the baby.”

“We sat down and said, ‘Here’s what we want to do.’ The first thing on the list was simple: We want, God willing, to start a family. So we decided we were going to make 2014 the Year of the Baby. And please,” Chelsea pleads, “call my mother and tell her that. She asks us about it every single day.”

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Apparently, Hillary got the message, and thought the strategy was pretty effective for capping off the torrent of questions about 2016 that surround her like a whirlpool wherever she goes.  So today, when she appeared before the Long Island Association, she tried her hand at Chelsea’s technique for dealing with inquiring minds.

Hillary Clinton: I’ll ‘think seriously’ next year about running

Hillary Rodham Clinton is pictured. | AP Photo

‘I will think about it because it’s something on a lot of people’s minds,’ Clinton says. | AP Photo

Hillary Clinton will start to “seriously” think about a presidential bid next year, she said at a Friday lunch, a new report says.

“I want to think seriously about it; I probably won’t begin thinking about it until sometime next year,” Clinton said of a presidential bid, according to a report in Newsday. “I will think about it because it’s something on a lot of people’s minds. And it’s on my mind as well. But I want us to think more broadly.”

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This method might not stifle daily questions to Chelsea, but should go a long way toward silencing the incessant questions to Hillary as she motors around giving speeches and receiving awards.  As for those who have tried so hard to convince some of us that she is definitely running,  maybe we can enjoy a respite from that, too, since, right now, she has assured us, she is not even thinking about it.

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Even while vacationing, Hillary Clinton manages to grab headlines.  Maggie Haberman at Politico reports the latest addition to Hillary’ s growing agenda of personal appearances.   The group’s website currently has no announcement of this engagement.

Hillary Clinton to speak to Carlyle Group investors

Hillary Clinton is pictured. | AP Photo

Clinton’s speaking fee is roughly $200,000, according to multiple reports. | AP Photo

Hillary Clinton is set to be the featured attraction at the private equity firm The Carlyle Group’s investor conference next month — the latest in a string of paid speeches the former secretary of state is making in the window she has to decide on a 2016 campaign.

Two sources familiar with the event confirmed Clinton’s attendance at the Sept. 9 event in Washington.

The moderator is the group’s founder, David Rubenstein, a Democrat.

Read more >>>>

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Six months after resigning as secretary of state, a post that precluded her from participating in political campaigns and commenting directly on domestic issues with partisan implications, Hillary Clinton is set to re-enter the world of politics per Politico via Maggie Haberman.  Those itching for her to make a declaration one way or another will have to wait, however.  She is only dipping her toes in by backing a long time pal.  Hillary will be easing into her political reset by hosting a fund raiser for Clinton buddy Terry McAuliffe at her Washington DC home.  McAuliffe is running for governor in Virginia.

Hillary Clinton to host Terry McAuliffe fundraiser

Terry McAuliffe and Hillary Clinton are pictured. | AP Photo

McAuliffe is a longtime Clinton family friend.

Hillary Clinton will host a fundraiser for Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe, a longtime Clinton family friend, at her home in Washington next month, POLITICO has learned.

The Sept. 30 event marks the former secretary of state’s first political event since leaving Foggy Bottom earlier this year, sources said.

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August is the month that finds Hillary Clinton in the Hamptons  at least for part of the month.  Bill Clinton has routinely rented a mansion in East Hampton for a few weeks of the past several summers and has celebrated his birthday there.   Last year, Hillary had an especially abbreviated 10-day stay sandwiched between an extended farewell tour of Africa and a trip to the Pacific starting with the tiny Cook Islands.

According to Maggie Haberman at Politico, there is an invitation circulating indicating that once again the Clintons are planning some R & R in the Hamptons this summer.

Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton to host ritzy foundation fundraiser


Bill and Hillary Clinton will co-host a high-dollar event next month in a tony Long Island enclave to benefit their family foundation, according to an invitation that started circulating last week.

The event is being billed as a “very special dinner with President Bill Clinton and Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton” on Aug. 23 in Bridgehampton, at $5,000 a head.

Co-chairing the event costs $25,000 and chairing it carries a $50,000 price tag.“All proceeds will support the life-changing work of the newly renamed Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation – improving global health, strengthening economies, promoting health and wellness, and protecting the environment by fostering innovative partnerships among businesses, governments, NGOs, and private citizens,” the invitation reads.

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Maggie Haberman at Politico reports that Hillary Clinton’s new office at the Clinton Foundation is expanding.   (Reminder, not everything is about 2016.)

Hillary Clinton hires ex-Obama staffer

Hillary Clinton is filling out the policy side of her post-State Department life, adding a longtime Obama-world veteran to her newly created office at the Clinton Foundation.

Madhuri Kommareddi, the new director of program development for the Office of Hillary Rodham Clinton, worked as a policy aide on President Barack Obama’s 2008 campaign, as well as on his transition team, according to an email sent out by the Clinton Foundation internally.

She was also a director for international economic affairs at the White House Security Council, and was an associate staff secretary in the White House.

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