Somebody may not be getting an invitation to the inaugural ball if Hillary manages to get herself elected President.
Today on Morning Joe the panel welcomed former Secretary of State Madelaine Albright to join the national discussion on a number of issues. She actually had some good contributions on Syria, Russia and foreign affairs in general. (All things considered, she sounded amazingly more competent than John Kerry or Hillary Clinton combined and clearly stays on top of the news.) But the show couldn’t let her go without tossing in a bit of catnip for the audience so they had her weigh in on the email practices of Clinton and how the two might have differed. Willie Geist spoke to her about her reputation for being tough on security and taking people to the woodshed when they talked out of school or compromised any intelligence data. But when asked about Clinton, she quickly leaped to her defense. (Politico)
“I think she has spoken to this very clearly, and I do not see that as a security breach,” Albright, a longtime Clinton ally, said in a roundtable discussion on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”
Albright, who did not use email as secretary of state from 1997-2001 under President Bill Clinton, said both she and Hillary Clinton were “tough” on security during their respective tenures at Foggy Bottom.
“I think that it is important to be tough because we are obviously concerned about hacking and a variety of issues, but I think she has explained what she’s done. She’s turned things over,” Albright remarked, noting that every agency has a different definition of what it considers classified.
So far so good. She sounded like she was taking the same line as every other Hillary surrogate who makes the rounds of the cable TV talk festivals. That wouldn’t come as too much of a shock since she was appointed by and served under Hillary’s husband. But then she got hit with the question which seemed to tip over the apple cart. Mark Halperin asked, “If you were Secretary of State now and your Deputy Secretary of State said I want to do all of my email on a personal server on a private email account, would you approve that?”
In this case, the video is worth ten thousand words just to see the look on her face. (Video from GOP War Room)
“I would not. No.”
Those four words torpedoed any benefit that Clinton might have received from having a previous and generally admired holder of the same office coming out to endorse her. (Not to mention being one of those glass ceiling breakers who paved the way for later women in high office.) She looked so sad to have to say it, too. But in the end it seems that Albright still retains more integrity than at least a couple of people who followed her at the State Department and should couldn’t sit there with a straight face and say that it was all fine and dandy.
You may recall that when Kerry was dragged into this whole mess he was far more deferential to Clinton’s peculiar record keeping habits, but at the same time he sought to avoid becoming collateral damage himself. (Boston Globe)
“Everybody realizes Hillary has a problem with this,” said one longtime Kerry confidant. “Nobody is happy they’ve got to take any bullets. But they all feel they’re generally on the same team. They’re going to be careful to hide their irritation and help cover her back.”
But with some congressional Republicans saying his State Department cannot be trusted, Kerry has tried to prevent himself from becoming collateral damage in Clinton’s own messy mini-scandal. Three weeks ago, Kerry wrote to the inspector general of the State Department, requesting a review of records retention practices.
Clinton dug this hole for herself, but unfortunately for the Democrats it’s turned out to be sink hole which has expanded and threatens to take down the rest of the team. The only question for her contemporaries is how they can best show their support for Team Clinton without getting sucked down if the ship goes under. Albright doesn’t have a dog left in the fight in terms of a political career and it seems as if she isn’t willing to sacrifice her legacy to do so.