Hillary Clinton laughed in an interview with Jake Tapper when the CNN anchor pointed out that while Bernie Sanders said “the American people are sick and tired of hearing about your damn e-mails,” there are “a lot of people who are not including FBI officials.”
“And this is something else that is very confusing to me. With all your experience, why wouldn’t you anticipate that over the course of four years, handling very sensitive diplomatic negotiations, overseeing military interventions and surveillance, why wouldn’t you anticipate that something classified, whether about North Korea or Iran or drones or an informant for the CIA, that it wouldn’t be e- mailed to you? And why wouldn’t you consider that having it on your personal account with some server in Colorado might be a potential risk?” Tapper asked the Democratic presidential candidate.
Clinton told him that “nothing that I was sent or that I sent was marked classified.”
“The inspector general of the intelligence community said some of this stuff contained classified information when it was generated whether or not it was marked classified,” Tapper noted.
“Well, that is just a very strong difference of opinion. The State Department does not agree with that. And it is almost an impossible standard because we had two separate systems,” she retorted. “…That’s what’s going on here. Different agencies are weighing in saying, yes, it wasn’t classified, but we think that there is something in it that now we’re going to say is sensitive. At the time there was nothing marked classified. And that is the fact that hasn’t changed.”
Tapper pressed Clinton on whether she considered that emails with long analyses from close confidant Sid Blumenthal — who couldn’t be officially hired at the State Department because of conflicts with Obama administration officials –contained “very sensitive” information.
“Sid Blumenthal was not a government employee or official. It would be like you sending me something, Jake. If I thought it had some interest to it, I might forward it onto somebody,” she replied. “But I would not expect you to be in a position to classify anything because you were not in that classification process. Neither was he. So, he sent me stuff that he heard from people. You know, he’s an old journalist and thought it was of interest. Some of it I sent on, some I didn’t. I kind of made the judgment at the time.”
“It was not in the category of anything that could be classified because it came from an outside nongovernment person passing on what somebody told somebody told him. And, look, I’m somebody who thinks the government and people who work in it should be open to getting information from different sources.”
Clinton also laughed when reminded of her debate answer this week that Republicans are the enemy of which she’s most proud.
“Well, it was a little tongue-in-cheek. But it’s clear, I think, to anybody who’s been around for a while that, you know, they do seem to enjoy coming after me. But then, once I’m in office, they have always worked with me. And I expect it will be exactly the same,” she said.
“It’s funny to me. When I was secretary of State, I had very high support and approval from Republicans, not just the Republican voters, but Republican officeholders. As soon as I got into this presidential election, you know, all of that collapsed again.”