Feinstein: Why isn't Hillary defending herself in the e-mail scandal?

On one hand, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) has a point. Hillary Clinton’s decision to stonewall the media in her latest scandal can’t help but to call her leadership into question. On the other hand, is anyone surprised to see a Clinton — especially Hillary — stonewalling during a scandal? You’d think Feinstein just arrived in Washington after the last election:

“What I would like is for her to come forward and say just what the situation is,” said Feinstein, the top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, during an interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

It was discovered last week that during Clinton’s four years as head of the State Department, she used an email account hosted on a server in her Chappaqua, N.Y., home.

Some lawmakers have suggested that in doing so, Clinton broke the spirit, if not the letter, of the rules requiring the government to archive letters and emails of top officials.

Feinstein said she didn’t think Clinton broke any laws.

“As I understand it, the regulations were unclear and there’s no specific law,” she said.

Really? It was specific enough to contribute to Hillary’s cashiering of Ambassador Scott Gration in 2011, right in the middle of the time Hillary was evading the Federal Records Act. The requirement to use government e-mail systems for official business has existed for several years, including the entire tenure of Hillary’s time at State.  Furthermore, the use of a homebrew system with poor security hardly commends itself to someone who wants people to trust her to run the entire government and act as head of state rather than just the Secretary of State.

Yes, there were specific laws covering this issue, laws which Democrats like Feinstein cited when Republicans like Karl Rove and Sarah Palin made occasional uses of private e-mail. Feinstein apparently wants to join Hillary on the stone wall. She’s just annoyed that Hillary isn’t herself joining her in the defense … but perhaps that should tell Feinstein something.

Why is Feinstein so desperate to defend Hillary when Hillary is clearly not interested in doing it herself? Matt Lewis suggests that “too big to fail” may be the Democratic motto for 2016:

If you’re trying to make sense of America’s nascent presidential race, it helps to think of it like a business: Hillary Clinton is a monopoly. In her quest for the Democratic nomination, she faces no real competitors.

What happens when we don’t have to compete? On the positive side, we don’t waste precious time and resources fending off upstarts. Protectionism discourages competitors (in this case, other Democrats) from even entering the market, meaning energy isn’t wasted on internecine challenges.

But there is also a downside. Sometimes we reluctantly discover the products or businesses we thought were the best really aren’t – that someone else had a better idea. When that happens, the public wins. (But when a few insiders unilaterally pick the winners and losers – when a product, business, or candidate is selected, not elected – there is no opportunity for such a discovery.) …

But what about the GOP? Perhaps appropriately, they have followed a more “Hayekian” free market approach. As I write this, a couple dozen aspiring Republicans have expressed interest in running for the presidential nomination. All but one will fail. Their campaigns will necessarily go out of business. This is called “creative destruction.” But one candidate will survive, and his or her party will theoretically benefit from having given away some degree of control in allowing the rest of us to help select the nominee. This is the wisdom of the crowds.

Let’s compare that with what the Democrats, who are currently toeing the line for Hillary, are doing. In providing their voters with an echo, not a choice, they are ceding little control to the masses (who have little alternative). It should be noted that this is not necessarily by design; it’s partly out of desperation.

There’s a lot of desperation among Democrats these days. There may be enough for them to actually try a free-market approach to the 2016 nomination. But … don’t get your Hayekian hopes up.

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