To describe yesterday as a “busy” day would be a bit of an understatement, but there was still news being made on the national front. One big story which got shoved toward the back of the shelf was the fact that yet another set of Hillary Clinton’s emails was released. This batch numbered more than 500, with a full fifteen percent of them being classified at one level or another and three ringing the Top Secret bell. At this point it seems to be developing into a pattern. (Washington Times)
More than 15 percent of the latest batch of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s emails released Saturday contain classified information, with three of the messages being labeled “secret” — continuing to add to the questions surrounding her email use.
One of the messages is an extensive missive from David Satterfield, a top U.S. diplomat to Egypt, who told top officials in both the White House and State Department about negotiations in the Sinai. The entire contents of the messages are now deemed “secret,” though there is no indication they were marked as such at the time. The message was forwarded to Mrs. Clinton by top aide Jacob Sullivan.
In addition to the three “secret” messages, more than 80 others were marked “confidential” — the lower level of secrecy — and also heavily redacted.
The high percentage of classified material seems to follow the pattern established in the State Department’s excuse as to why we don’t already have the full set. Originally they were scheduled to release everything prior to the Iowa caucuses, but between the snowstorm (*cough*) and bureaucratic failures, we came up thousands of messages short. State still claims that a lot of them could have been processed, but they belatedly discovered they’d forgotten to run all the traps on them. (“Run all the traps” needs to be a t-shirt or a bumper sticker by Monday.)
Still, as I said when this delay was first announced, the waiting game is likely working against Hillary. Right now the news beast is distracted by the nascent fight over replacing Justice Scalia on the Supreme Court, but as time wears on and nothing happens that’s going to calm down. Meanwhile, the rest of the emails will be released on a weekly basis with the last batch coming out on February 29th. Getting the final tranche on Leap Day may be fitting in an ironic way, because they are likely to be the stickiest ones involving the most departments and they will drop literally within 24 hours of Super Tuesday. That should make for an interesting closing argument for Clinton’s campaign as they head into a fight over a massive number of delegates.
Meanwhile, some of the rats seem to be abandoning the ship. As IJ Review reported this weekend, a former intelligence chief for Barack Obama called for Clinton to step down immediately, at least until she can try to clear this cloud from over her head.
Appearing on CNN’s “The Lead” Friday, retired chief of the Defense Intelligence Agency under Barack Obama, Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, had some direct words of advice for Hillary Clinton.
After a brief rundown of the charges against Clinton, Flynn told host Jake Tapper that the Democratic candidate needs to step out of the presidential race until the FBI investigation is over:
“In all 50 states, we have Islamic State cases ongoing–and I know the FBI is just overwhelmed with white collar crime, child pornography cases, transnational organized criminal cases…and now we have to put another 100 agents on this case of Hillary Clinton…
Here’s the video of the interview. It’s not terribly long and definitely worth a look for the sheer entertainment value.
Will Hillary take the advice of someone with that much direct experience in the field? Obviously not. But it’s yet another drip in the long trail of this story.