Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton's Transparent Lies

How the Democratic presidential candidate kept an email controversy alive


In a Meet the Press interview on Sunday, Hillary Clinton said she has tried to "be as transparent as possible" in response to questions about her use of a private email server as secretary of state. A timeline of her efforts so far suggests she needs to try a little harder.

March 3: The New York Times reports that Clinton, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, used a private server for all of her electronic correspondence as secretary of state, thereby evading automatic archiving. A spokesman for Clinton says she complied with "the letter and spirit of the rules" governing State Department communications.

March 8: A spokesman for Bill Clinton says he has used email only twice in his life, both times when he was president.

March 10: Clinton reports that she erased about 32,000 email messages she deemed private, including "personal communications from my husband and me," and gave the State Department about 30,000 work-related messages. She says she "fully complied with every rule," "went above and beyond what I was requested to do," and "did not email any classified material to anyone."  

March 31: CNN reports that Clinton, who said she used a private email address because "I thought it would be easier to carry just one device for my work and for my personal emails instead of two," carried two devices, a Blackberry and an iPad, that she used for email as secretary of state.

April 21: Clinton mentions that she has since started carrying two additional devices, an iPhone and a mini iPad.

July 7: "I've never had a subpoena" seeking email messages, Clinton tells CNN's Brianna Keilar.

July 8: Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), chairman of the House committee investigating the 2012 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, releases a copy of a March 4 congressional subpoena seeking relevant Clinton email messages.

July 24: The inspectors general of the State Department and the intelligence community report that Clinton's email included classified material that should never have been stored on a private server.

August 18: Pressed by Fox News correspondent Ed Henry about whether she had "wiped" her email server, Clinton replies, "What? With a cloth or something?"

August 20: A federal judge hearing a Freedom of Information Act case concerning Clinton's email says, "We wouldn't be here if the employee had followed government policy."

August 26: Clinton concedes using a private email server "clearly wasn't the best choice," adding, "I take responsibility for that decision." Revising her earlier claim about sensitive material in her email, she says she is confident an FBI investigation will show "I never sent, nor received, any email that was marked classified."

September 4: Asked if she owes Americans an apology for the email controversy, Clinton tells NBC News, "I am sorry that this has been confusing to people and has raised a lot of questions."

September 7: Clinton tells the Associated Press there is no reason for her to apologize about her private email address because "what I did was allowed."

September 8: Clinton finally uses the m-word to describe her private email server, telling ABC News, "That was a mistake. I'm sorry about that. I take responsibility."

September 25: The State Department says it has email correspondence between Clinton at her private address and David Petraeus, then commander of the U.S. Central Command, beginning January 10, 2009, more than two months before Clinton says she started using that address.

September 27: Asked about the discrepancy on Meet the Press, Clinton has no explanation. "There was a transition period," she says. "You know, I wasn't that focused on my email."

During that same interview, Clinton blamed the email controversy on a "drip, drip, drip" of "charges and claims" from Republicans. "There's only so much that I can control," she said. There's a lesson that Clinton, whose controlling tendencies gave birth to this story and kept it alive, really should take to heart.

© Copyright 2015 by Creators Syndicate Inc.

NEXT: Politico Overstates His Dropping Out, Insists Rand Paul-Supporting SuperPAC Chief Edward Crane

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. “You know, I wasn’t that focused on my email.”

    See? No mens rea. Case closed.

  2. Fake scandal and punching down or something.

  3. Sept 8 quote isn’t quite correct. She apologizes not for having a private email server but for not having set up two email accounts; one for work, one for personal email. That was a ‘mistake’. Of course if you have your own server and domain name, her IT guy could have just set up another email address. Her mistake, which she has never admitted to nor apologized for, is having a private email server in the first place. As a Feb 16, 2014 ArsTechnica states: “Why do battle with the arcane dragons of roll your own e-mail solution? I’ll tell you why: because if it’s in the cloud it’s not yours.

    1. You know what else is not yours?

      Work product as a government employee.

      Setting up the private server is intent to defraud the government.

  4. Hey! The Demagogic Party once was a low-tariff party of thrift–even some freedom for a few pale folks here and there. When Lincoln and the Red Republican Congress banned the sale of liquor to soldiers and began experimenting with an income tax on August 5, 1861, the Dems were horrified, but eventually came around. God’s Own Party today still worships the income tax out of Communist Manifesto plank 2, and is firmly committed to tariff protection and prohibition laws, ironically, to protect the liquor industry. Clearly there is not a dime’s worth of difference between the two parties. Both are committed to the initiation of force to take from others, are therefore dishonest, and can with reasonable certainty be expected to lie just as we expect them to rob us at every opportunity. Hillary lies in order to qualify as a candidate for her looter party just as the GOP candidates lie to curry favor with their gang. Let’s be fair!

  5. I’m surprised he didn’t spend more time pointing out how her Sgt. Schultz performance on Meet the Press basically contradicted every lie she has told up to this point:

    “Oh, the server was just lying around in the basement so I decided to use it because it was already there”

    So, “I didn’t want to have to carry around two email devices” is off the table, I guess. And this doesn’t explain getting it set up the same day she was nominated for SOS, or hiring a State department employee to set up a server that she wants us to believe was already up and running.

    “I just let my lawyers do all the sorting of the mail, I had nothing to do with it”

    Funny, because the story used to be that your loyal staffers (HUMA!!!!) did the sorting via simple keyword searches.

    “It’s all just Republican lies!”

    That’s why the story was broken by the New York Times and the Washington Post, and why the daily revelations are coming from the FBI and the Obama State Department?

    If you want to know which people posting on any given website are paid employees of the Clinton campaign, look for these tells:

    “Yawn! Another fake scandal invented by Republicans.”
    “DOJ has already said she did nothing wrong, so there is no scandal!”
    “FBI has already cleared her of any wrongdoing, so this story is over!”
    “Whatever. Hillary WILL be the next President, so you voters just need to accept it and get over it.”

    1. The fake scandal tactic would work if the mainline NYT/WP press were more uncritically in the bag for her. They’re not (and who is, other than Bill and your standard Wall Street Team Blue types?), so a scandal that Bill or BHO would’ve slipped with ease continues to erode her candidacy.

      Her handlers are caught between a rock and a hard place: the more exposure to the press Hillary endures, the less primary voters will like her, but the more she stonewalls, the more eager they are to kick her teeth in. Seems that personality matters at least as much to the press as it does to the public.

      1. probably, in the most superficial way possible (there’s a magazine called “people”). her problem is, i think, she acts like her husband (she saw him get away with it) but she doesnt have the charisma to pull it off. as trivial an issue as this is i don’t think anyone ever believed that he didnt inhale, but you cant stay mad at bubba

    2. “It’s just a vast right-wing conspiracy!”

      Shades of 1998…

      1. Don’t you remember when Karl Rove broke into the Oval Office and shoved Bill’s dick into Monica’s mouth?

        1. Are you sure Monica was involved?

    3. “I just let my lawyers do all the sorting of the mail, I had nothing to do with it”

      Funny, because the story used to be that your loyal staffers (HUMA!!!!) did the sorting via simple keyword searches.

      Don’t forget Lie #3: “The official makes the decision whether the email is personal or work-related, and I was the official.”

      It’s like she’s Goldilocks trying out lies until she gets it juuuuust right.

  6. The nice thing about this article is that every week, Sullum can add a new paragraph and then publish it as an original piece.

    1. +1(0,000?) new pageviews?

  7. See, the problem here is that Her Hillaryness is just a very unskilled liar. She’s just… bad at it. And this is after many decades of watching someone who is superbly talented.

    If she were smarter, she would never speak, she’d just roll Bill out, stand behind him, and smile.

    1. I can imagine him on a wheeled dolly, face permanently cast into a smile, right arm hinged at the elbow with the upright hand continually waving in a 40* arc.
      And Shrill just peaking around from behind now and then.

  8. Google pay 97$ per hour my last pay check was $8500 working 1o hours a week online. My younger brother friend has been averaging 12k for months now and he works about 22 hours a week. I cant believe how easy it was once I tried it out.
    This is wha- I do…… ?????? http://www.buzznews99.com

  9. Clearly she’s hoping that the scandal will just go away if she stonewalls for long enough. She just might be right about that, too.

    1. I think at this point she’s sticking it out on the slim chance she’ll get to pardon herself.

      Bill tried to cheer her up this morning by reminding her that Nelson Mandela got elected president after spending 27 years in prison.

    2. Regardless of which party takes power, it will all go away the day after Election day.

  10. Hill-ar-y-ous exudes sleaze from every pore.

  11. How is it that the Federal government allows any employee to setup their own server and allow government business to be conducted on it? What the hell am I missing?

    1. Where have you been for the last year? The federal government doesn’t allow it, it’s against the law, and that why it’s a scandal.

      1. If its against the law, seems like a fairly clear cut case, with HRC already acknowledging the existence of the server. So, why haven’t charges been filed by the appropriate authorities, and if not, what is their official position on why not?

        1. Roscoe, just imagine, for an instant, that she’s got photos of damned near everyone in DC caught in ‘compromising situations.’

          Clearer now?

  12. See, the problem is all in our understanding of the word “possible”. When Hillary says she wants to be “as transparent as possible”, what she actually means is “as transparent as I have to be” (or, really, “as opaque as I can get away with”).

    Sort of like “what the meaning of ‘is’ is.” She’s just channeling Bill, but badly. What she’s saying and what we’re hearing are entirely different things.

  13. See, Hillary Clinton is all about transparency!

  14. Google pay 97$ per hour my last pay check was $8500 working 1o hours a week online. My younger brother friend has been averaging 12k for months now and he works about 22 hours a week. I cant believe how easy it was once I tried it out.
    This is wha- I do…… ?????? http://www.buzznews99.com

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.