‘Accurate’ claims that Russia meddled to help Trump beat Clinton

After reviewing intelligence reports a US Senate committee says that findings that Russia ramped up attempts to interfere in the US election in 2016 and helped Donald Trump win were accurate.

Intel Committee Releases Unclassified Summary of Initial Findings on 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment

Today, Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Richard Burr (R-NC) and Vice Chairman Mark Warner (D-VA) released the Committee’s unclassified summary of its initial findings on the Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA) on Russian activities in the 2016 U.S. elections.

The Committee finds that the overall judgments issued in the ICA were well-supported and the tradecraft was strong. The course of the Committee’s investigation has shown that the Russian cyber operations were more extensive than the hack of the Democratic National Committee and continued well through the 2016 election.

Chairman Burr

“The Committee has spent the last 16 months reviewing the sources, tradecraft and analytic work underpinning the Intelligence Community Assessment and sees no reason to dispute the conclusions. The Committee continues its investigation and I am hopeful that this instalment of the Committee’s work will soon be followed by additional summaries providing the American people with clarity around Russia’s activities regarding U.S. elections.”

Vice Chairman Warner

“Our investigation thoroughly reviewed all aspects of the January 2017 ICA, which assessed that Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an influence campaign to target our presidential election and to destabilize our democratic institutions. As numerous intelligence and national security officials in the Trump administration have since unanimously re-affirmed, the ICA findings were accurate and on point.  The Russian effort was extensive and sophisticated, and its goals were to undermine public faith in the democratic process, to hurt Secretary Clinton and to help Donald Trump.  While our investigation remains ongoing, we have to learn from 2016 and do more to protect ourselves from attacks in 2018 and beyond.”

Investigations like this are for finding out what happened and try to prevent future interference.

Fox News – Findings that Russia meddled to help Trump beat Clinton were ‘accurate and on point’: Senate intel panel

The FBI’s and CIA’s “analytical disagreement” with the NSA over whether Russia sought to bolster the Trump presidential campaign was “reasonable,” the report also said.

While the FBI and CIA had “high confidence” that Russian President Vladimir Putin aspired to help Trump’s election chances by denigrating opponent Hillary Clinton, the NSA had only “moderate confidence” in that assessment, according to the January 2017 analysis.

The disagreement among agencies “was reasonable, transparent, and openly debated among the agencies and analysts, with analysts, managers and agency heads on both sides of the confidence level articulately justifying their positions,” the Senate intelligence committee’s findings said.

This further confirms what is fairly widely accepted – that Russia meddled in the election trying to help Trump.

Trump is due to meet with Vladimir Putin next month.

Manafort heading to jail as bail is revoked

Paul Manafort looks to be headed to jail with his bail revoked as he faces charges as a result of the Mueller inquiry.

Reuters: Manafort pleads not guilty to witness-tampering charges, judge weighs revoking bail

President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort pleaded not guilty on Friday to new witness tampering charges brought by the special counsel investigating Russia’s role in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

Manafort appeared at an arraignment before U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson in Washington on the new charges brought by Special Counsel Robert Mueller last week. Jackson on Friday was also weighing whether to revoke Manafort’s current bail conditions and send him to jail because of the fresh allegations against him.

After the hearing: Judge Orders Paul Manafort Jailed Before Trial, Citing New Obstruction Charges

A federal judge revoked Paul Manafort’s bail and sent him to jail on Friday to await trial, citing new charges that Mr. Manafort had tried to influence the testimony of two of the government’s witnesses after he had been granted bail.

Mr. Manafort, President Trump’s former campaign chairman, had posted a $10 million bond and was under house arrest while awaiting his September trial on a host of charges, including money laundering and false statements.

But Judge Amy Berman Jackson of United States District Court for the District of Columbia said Mr. Manafort could not remain free, even under stricter conditions, in the face of new felony charges that he had engaged in witness tampering while out on bail. “This is not middle school,” she said during a 90-minute court hearing. “I can’t take away his cellphone.”

Trump responded on Twitter:

It’s not a sentence. Manafort is one of the first to be charged, that probably makes him just one of the mobsters being leaned on to compromise those further up the chain.

And the just released Review of Various Actions by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Department of Justice in Advance of the 2016 Election by the Office of the Inspector General, U.S. Department of Justice states:

“The Midyear team concluded that such proof (of crimes by Clinton) was lacking. We found that this interpretation of (the law) was consistent with the Department’s historical approach in prior cases under different leadership, including in the 2008 decision not to prosecute former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales for mishandling classified documents.”

Trump can tweet all he likes, that is not going to change what happens in the courts – unless it compromises him.

No proof of bias in FBI Clinton email probe

Not surprisingly faults have been found in the FBO investigation of Hillary Clinton’s email server, and the way James Comey handled it, but no proof has been found of bias.

Politico: Watchdog criticizes Comey but finds no proof FBI’s Clinton probe tainted by bias

A long-awaited report by the Justice Department’s watchdog Thursday found no indication that political bias affected decisions in the FBI’s 2016 investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email server, but the review criticized agents and ex-FBI Director James Comey for violating bureau norms during the probe.

The department’s inspector general turned up fresh evidence of FBI officials exchanging messages critical of President Donald Trump and of leaking to the media, and the report faulted the FBI for several weeks of inaction following the September 2016 discovery of emails relevant to its investigation on a laptop belonging to former Democratic Rep. Anthony Weiner, who was married to a top Clinton aide.

Comey was singled out for withering criticism by Inspector General Michael Horowitz, including accusations of insubordination against top Justice Department officials and of making “a serious error of judgment” in notifying Congress shortly before the 2016 election that the FBI was re-opening its Clinton email probe. Comey later reiterated his recommendation that she not face charges, but Clinton has said the letter nonetheless helped cause her loss.

I don’t think there’s any doubt that Comey’s actions had a significant impact on the presidential election campaign in 2016.

Fox targets Comey on their coverage: IG report on Clinton email probe reveals FBI agent’s ‘stop’-Trump text, calls Comey ‘insubordinate’

Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz, in a comprehensive and at-times scathing report on the handling of the Hillary Clinton email investigation, exposed extraordinary text messages by a top FBI official vowing to “stop” Donald Trump — while calling then-director James Comey’s actions in the case “insubordinate.”

The long-awaited report was released Thursday afternoon, spanning nearly 600 pages and scrutinizing the actions of numerous figures who played a key role in the Justice Department and FBI’s investigation. It is the result of an 18-month investigation, incorporating dozens of witness interviews and hundreds of thousands of documents.

The FBI, in its response to the review, said the inspector general “found no evidence to connect the political views expressed by these employees with the specific investigative decisions.”

But it said the inspector general has referred five employees for investigation into whether the messages violated the FBI’s Offense Codes and Penalty Guidelines.

Horowitz’s investigation looked at a variety of other allegations, including whether it was improper for Comey to make a public announcement about not recommending prosecution over the Clinton email arrangement.

“We found that it was extraordinary and insubordinate for Comey to conceal his intentions from his superiors, the Attorney General and Deputy Attorney General, for the admitted purpose of preventing them from telling him not to make the statement, and to instruct his subordinates in the FBI to do the same,” Horowitz’s report says.

THE FULL REPORT

Roger Stone under scrutiny in Mueller investigation

Roger Stone, a supporter of and adviser to Donald Trump, is under increasing scrutiny in the Mueller investigation.

He has been connected to Julian Assange and Wikileaks, who drip fed hacked emails related to the Hillary Clinton campaign.

CNN: Roger Stone’s finances examined by special counsel

Special counsel Robert Mueller’s team has been probing Roger Stone’s finances as it summons a series of witnesses to gather more information about one of President Donald Trump’s longtime advisers, according to people familiar with the situation. Mueller’s team has questioned associates about Stone’s finances, including his tax returns.

The interest in Stone’s finances could be tied to Mueller’s charge of investigating Russian meddling in the 2016 election and potential collusion, though another possibility is Mueller is pursuing something unrelated that turned up in the course of the investigation.

Even after he officially parted ways with Trump’s presidential campaign in its early days, Stone remained a staunch supporter and friend of Trump’s. During the campaign, he launched a pro-Trump super PAC called Committee to Restore America’s Greatness.

Now, the interest in Stone’s finances has created a new sense of alarm among his associates.

Whatever the reasoning, the probe into Stone’s finances should give him cause for concern, Zeldin said. Stone appears to recognize that.

“The special counsel having found no evidence or proof whatsoever of Russian collusion, trafficking in allegedly hacked emails with WikiLeaks or advance knowledge of the publication of (then-Clinton campaign chair John) Podesta’s emails now seems to be combing through every molecule of my existence including my personal life, political activities and business affairs to conjure up some offense to charge me with either to silence me or induce me to testify against the President,” Stone told CNN. “I have no intention of being silenced or turning my back on President Trump.”

Stone has come under public scrutiny, in part, because of a prescient prediction during the 2016 campaign. In a now-infamous tweet, Stone predicted trouble for Podesta, weeks before WikiLeaks began releasing thousands of Podesta’s emails. Stone denies having any advance knowledge of the Podesta leaks.

The email in question:

 

“I sleep well at night because I know what I have and have not done,” Stone told CNN. “There’s no inappropriate activity pertaining to Russian collusion. I obtained nothing from WikiLeaks or Julian Assange. I never passed anything on to WikiLeaks or Julian Assange.”

But Wall Street reports: Roger Stone Sought Information on Clinton From Assange, Emails Show

Former Trump campaign adviser Roger Stone privately sought information he considered damaging to Hillary Clinton from WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange during the 2016 presidential campaign, according to emails reviewed by The Wall Street Journal.

The emails could raise new questions about Mr. Stone’s testimony before the House Intelligence Committee in September, in which he said he “merely wanted confirmation” from an acquaintance that Mr. Assange had information about Mrs. Clinton, according to a portion of the transcript…

The rest is behind a pay wall, but more here: The email Roger Stone didn’t want anyone to see

Emails obtained by the Wall Street Journal indicate that longtime Trump adviser Roger Stone withheld key documents from the House Intelligence Committee — documents indicating he lied about his communications with a radio host he hoped would serve as a backchannel to WikiLeaks during the 2016 campaign.

According to the Journal, in a message sent on September 18, 2016, Stone wrote to Randy Credico, a New York radio personality who interviewed WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange several weeks earlier, and asked him to:

“Please ask Assange for any State or HRC e-mail from August 10 to August 30–particularly on August 20, 2011.”

That email, which indicates Stone sought help colluding with a website that the U.S. intelligence community has accused of laundering emails stolen by Russian hackers, contradicts Stone’s September 2017 testimony to the House Intelligence Committee that he “merely wanted confirmation” from Credico that Assange had information about Clinton. It also contradicts statements Stone has made on his Facebook page and website about how his communications with Credico about Wikileaks merely “asked Randy to confirm that the Australian journalist had credible information on Hillary Clinton’s campaign.”

The Journal details Credico’s response, which suggests that he had asked Assange for favors on Stone’s behalf on previous occasions.

Wall Street Journal:

Mr. Credico initially responded to Mr. Stone that what he was requesting would be on WikiLeaks’ website if it existed, according to an email reviewed by the Journal. Mr. Stone, the emails show, replied: “Why do we assume WikiLeaks has released everything they have ???”

In another email, Mr. Credico then asked Mr. Stone to give him a “little bit of time,” saying he thought Mr. Assange might appear on his radio show the next day.

A few hours later, Mr. Credico wrote: “That batch probably coming out in the next drop…I can’t ask them favors every other day .I asked one of his lawyers…they have major legal headaches riggt now..relax.”

About two weeks later Stone tweeted:

That raised suspicions about what he knew, how he knew it, and how this might be linked to the Trump campaign.

The campaign against Clinton by Wikileaks deserves more attention too.

A tangled web that may or may not be unravelled by the Mueller investigation.

 

Hillary Clinton in New Zealand

I don’t really care about Hillary Clinton being in New Zealand to promote her book and to be paid by many to hear her say how unfair it was that not enough Americans voted for her in the 2016 US election.

But some here may want to talk about it and promote interest in her visit.

Clinton ticket sales struggling

This doesn’t surprise me (if true) – an evening with Hillary Clinton does not appear to be a sellout.

If they have trouble giving tickets away perhaps they could package a free ticket with a free Clinton book – but that may make it harder giving them away.

An Evening With Hillary Clinton tickets are selling for $195 and $295 – see Ticketek.

If she came to Dunedin I might go to listen to her out of curiosity, but I wouldn’t pay much if anything. Same for Obama or Trump.

Presidential parade

An ex-presidential line-up.

That was taken at ex-First Lady Barbara Bush’s funeral.

President Trump didn’t attend the funeral, which was not out of the ordinary. USA Today: President Trump was not at Barbara Bush’s funeral – here’s why

President Trump did not attend former first lady Barbara Bush’s funeral on Saturday in Houston.

Instead, first lady Melania Trump was there representing the Trumps, continuing a tradition of first ladies attending the funerals of their predecessors.

The White House told the BBC Trump wouldn’t attend “to avoid disruptions due to added security, and out of respect for the Bush Family.”

Trump’s absence isn’t unusual for a sitting president. The last president to attend a first lady’s funeral was John F. Kennedy, who went to Eleanor Roosevelt’s service in 1962.

Former president Barack Obama did not attend Nancy Reagan’s funeral in 2016 or Betty Ford’s in 2011, and Bill Clinton did not attend the funeral of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. Clinton did speak at a graveside service for her at Arlington National Cemetery in 1994.

A president in attendance would be potentially quite disruptive with all the security involved.

CNN: President Trump won’t attend Barbara Bush funeral, to ‘avoid disruptions’

Former President Jimmy Carter and Rosalynn Carter will not attend, as Jimmy Carter will be on a trip overseas and Rosalynn Carter is recovering from recent intestinal surgery, a spokesperson for the Carter Center said in a statement Thursday.

Bush, the matriarch of a Republican political dynasty and a first lady who elevated the cause of literacy, died Tuesday. She was 92.

There could have been unnecessary controversy if Trump had attended, as Barbara Bush had strongly criticised him during the presidential campaign. Snopes has a summary:

During the 2016 campaign, Barbara Bush didn’t hold back in her critiques of then-candidate Donald Trump. In the course of a CNN interview, for example, she proclaimed that “[Trump] doesn’t give many answers to how he would solve problems. He sort of makes faces and says insulting things … He’s said terrible things about women, terrible things about the military. I don’t understand why people are for him, for that reason. I’m a woman … I’m not crazy about what he says about women.”

In another interview with CBS, Bush again lambasted Trump for his comments about women and called him a “comedian” or a “showman”:

Trump beat off a challenge from her son Jeb Bush in the Republican nomination for the 2016 presidential campaign.

 

 

 

Hillary Clinton to speak in New Zealand

For those who are interested and have a few hundred dollars to spare Hillary Clinton is scheduled to speak in Auckland in May.

AN EVENING WITH HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON

Free from the constraints of running, Secretary Clinton will share the intense personal experience of becoming the first woman nominated for president by a major party in an election marked by rage, sexism, exhilarating highs and infuriating lows, stranger-than-fiction twists, Russian interference, and an opponent who broke all the rules.

Secretary Clinton will take audiences on a journey; What Happened and what’s next. A story of resilience, Secretary Clinton explains how she got back up after a loss, and how we can all look ahead.

An illuminating insight into Secretary Clinton’s experience as a woman in politics — she lets loose on this topic, and others, in a way she never has before.

Official media release:

Leading Australian business events provider, The Growth Faculty, has announced today, An Evening with Hillary Rodham Clinton, a series of three exclusive and intimate events with Secretary Clinton to take place in in Auckland (Monday 7 May 2018), Melbourne (Thursday 10 May 2018) and Sydney (Friday 11 May 2018).

First-access tickets are on sale and only available via www.thegrowthfaculty.com for a limited time, ahead of general release. Ticketing information is attached within the media release.

An Evening with Hillary Rodham Clinton will see Secretary Clinton provide her personal insights into the 2016 US presidential election, its aftermath and what the future holds, sharing stories from her New York Times bestseller, What Happened.

“From lawyer and activist, to first lady, senator, secretary of state and first female presidential candidate of a major American political party, Secretary Clinton’s extraordinary career and story of resilience is one that business leaders and the wider community will find both fascinating and inspiring,” says The Growth Faculty Managing Director, Karen Beattie.

It’s certainly not something I would be interested in going to if she was speaking at the local hall, let alone in Auckland.

No evidence that the Russians have influenced this event.

Clinton harassment excuses too little, too late, too self serving

Hillary Clinton has now admitted she was wrong not to dismiss an adviser accused of sexual harassment during her 2008 presidential campaign. She had been strongly criticised since a New York Times claim: Hillary Clinton Chose to Shield a Top Adviser Accused of Harassment in 2008

A senior adviser to Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign who was accused of repeatedly sexually harassing a young subordinate was kept on the campaign at Mrs. Clinton’s request, according to four people familiar with what took place.

Mrs. Clinton’s campaign manager at the time recommended that she fire the adviser, Burns Strider. But Mrs. Clinton did not. Instead, Mr. Strider was docked several weeks of pay and ordered to undergo counseling, and the young woman was moved to a new job.

It is sadly typical that the person who was harassed was moved away from the problem rather than dealing properly with the problem.

It has been reported that Strider did not do the counseling.

Mr. Strider, who was Mrs. Clinton’s faith adviser, was a founder of the American Values Network and sent the candidate scripture readings every morning for months during the campaign, was hired five years later to lead an independent group that supported Mrs. Clinton’s 2016 candidacy, Correct the Record, which was created by a close Clinton ally, David Brock.

He was fired after several months for workplace issues, including allegations that he harassed a young female aide, according to three people close to Correct the Record’s management.

Those familiar with the accounts said that, over the years, a number of advisers urged Mrs. Clinton to sever ties with Mr. Strider, and people familiar with what took place did not want to see Mrs. Clinton blamed for the misconduct of men she was close to.

A spokesman for Mrs. Clinton provided a statement from Utrecht, Kleinfeld, Fiori, Partners, the law firm that had represented the campaign in 2008 and which her advisers said has been involved on sexual harassment issues.

“To ensure a safe working environment, the campaign had a process to address complaints of misconduct or harassment. When matters arose, they were reviewed in accordance with these policies, and appropriate action was taken,” the statement said. “This complaint was no exception.”

Late Friday night, more than a day after The New York Times reached out to her aides for comment, Mrs. Clinton posted on Twitter that she was “dismayed when it occurred.”

Not dismayed enough to take appropriate action. Perhaps more dismayed that it has now been revealed.

She added that she called the woman on Friday “to tell her how proud I am of her and to make sure she knows what all women should: we deserve to be heard.”

A strange thing to do given her failure to give the woman’s complaints a suitable response at the time.

Clinton has also been awkwardly connected to Harvey Weinstein.

After several Hollywood actresses told The Times and The New Yorker that Harvey Weinstein, a longtime friend and donor to the Clintons, had harassed or assaulted them, Mrs. Clinton spoke out against his behavior, saying in a statement that she was “shocked and appalled by the revelations.”

Weeks later the actress Lena Dunham, one of Mrs. Clinton’s most visible celebrity supporters in her 2016 presidential bid, told The Times that she warned two Clinton campaign aides against associating with Mr. Weinstein. “I just want you to know that Harvey’s a rapist and this is going to come out at some point,” Ms. Dunham said she told the campaign.

Mrs. Clinton’s candidacy has been cited as an inspiration for the #MeToo movement, but she has not played a visible role in it.

Now Clinton has tried to explain her lack of appropriate action, and says that “If I had it to do again, I wouldn’t.”

The most important work of my life has been to support and empower women. I’ve tried to do so here at home, around the world, and in the organizations I’ve run. I started in my twenties, and four decades later I’m nowhere near being done. I’m proud that it’s the work I’m most associated with, and it remains what I’m most dedicated to.

So she starts with a promotion of herself.

So I very much understand the question I’m being asked as to why I let an employee on my 2008 campaign keep his job despite his inappropriate workplace behavior.

The short answer is this: If I had it to do again, I wouldn’t.

In 2007, a woman working on my campaign came forward with a complaint about her supervisor behaving inappropriately toward her. She and her complaint were taken seriously. Senior campaign staff and legal counsel spoke to both her and the offender. They determined that he had in fact engaged in inappropriate behavior. My then-campaign manager presented me with her findings. She recommended that he be fired. I asked for steps that could be taken short of termination. In the end, I decided to demote him, docking his pay; separate him from the woman; assign her to work directly for my then-deputy-campaign manager; put in place technical barriers to his emailing her; and require that he seek counseling. He would also be warned that any subsequent harassment of any kind toward anyone would result in immediate termination.

I did this because I didn’t think firing him was the best solution to the problem. He needed to be punished, change his behavior, and understand why his actions were wrong. The young woman needed to be able to thrive and feel safe. I thought both could happen without him losing his job. I believed the punishment was severe and the message to him unambiguous.

The woman lost her job instead – she was moved on – while the offender remained in his position.

I also believe in second chances. I’ve been given second chances and I have given them to others.

Like to her husband for his sexual misconduct. Probably not just second chances.

She put a ‘second chance’ for the offender – and her campaign – ahead of the victim.

I want to continue to believe in them. But sometimes they’re squandered. In this case, while there were no further complaints against him for the duration of the campaign, several years after working for me he was terminated from another job for inappropriate behavior. That reoccurrence troubles me greatly, and it alone makes clear that the lesson I hoped he had learned while working for me went unheeded.

The reoccurrence should trouble Clinton – it is a far too typical case of the offender being smacked on the hand and effectively left to reoffend.

When The New York Times reported on this incident last week, my first thought was for the young woman involved. So I reached out to her – most importantly, to see how she was doing, but also to help me reflect on my decision and its consequences. It’s never easy when something painful or personal like this surfaces, much less when it appears all over the news. I called her not knowing what I’d hear. Whatever she had to say, I wanted her to be able to say it, and say it to me.

She expressed appreciation that she worked on a campaign where she knew she could come forward without fear. She was glad that her accusations were taken seriously, that there was a clear process in place for dealing with harassment, and that it was followed. Most importantly, she told me that for the remainder of the campaign, she flourished in her new role.

This in Clinton’s words, not the victims. Clinton is trying to make excuses for not dealing with an insidious problem.

It was reassuring to hear that she felt supported back then – and that all these years later, those feelings haven’t changed. That again left me glad that my campaign had in place a comprehensive process for dealing with complaints.

It wasn’t comprehensive, it was a crappy failure.

At the time, I believed the punishment I imposed was severe and fit the offense.

A decade from now, that decision may not look as tough as it feels today. The norms around sexual harassment will likely have continued to change as swiftly and significantly in the years to come as they have over the years until now.

Sounds very confused.

Over the past year, a seismic shift has occurred in the way we approach and respond to sexual harassment, both as a society and as individuals. This shift was long overdue. It occurred thanks to women across industries who stood up and spoke out, from Hollywood to sports to farm workers – to the very woman who worked for me.

And no thanks to people like Clinton who tried to sweep it under a dirty rug, effectively allowing offenders to continue.

Clinton put her political ambitions first, and helped enable ongoing sleaze.

No woman should have to endure harassment or assault – at work, at school, or anywhere. And men are now on notice that they will truly be held accountable for their actions. Especially now, we all need to be thinking about the complexities of sexual harassment, and be willing to challenge ourselves to reassess and question our own views.

In other words, everyone’s now on their second chance, both the offenders and the decision-makers. Let’s do our best to make the most of it.

Clinton has just squanderer her ‘second chance’ to make a strong statement about the wrongs of the past, including her own. She has tried to justify what she did and didn’t do. This is more excuse than apology.

I recognize that the situation on my 2008 campaign was unusual in that a woman complained to a woman who brought the issue to a woman who was the ultimate decision maker. There was no man in the chain of command. The boss was a woman. Does a woman have a responsibility to come down even harder on the perpetrator? I don’t know. But I do believe that a woman boss has an extra responsibility to look out for the women who work for her, and to better understand how issues like these can affect them.

She failed in that responsibility badly. The problem wasn’t her failure to “to come down even harder on the perpetrator”, it was her failure to come down hard enough on him. And she is still failing with this statement to come down hard enough, she is putting more weight onto trying to save her reputation than condemning the offender and her own lack of action.

You may question why it’s taken me time to speak on this at length. The answer is simple: I’ve been grappling with this and thinking about how best to share my thoughts.

I presume she means ‘grappling’ with it since the NY Times revelation. Grappling with her PR advisers by the sound of it, trying to paper over the cracks in her reputation. Grappling with a cynical decision to make her statement under cover of Trump’s state of the nation speech.

At least she has not called the NY Times article fake news, and she has admitted she enabled a recidivist sexual harasser. Sort of.

This is a poor, excuse making, diversionary statement from Clinton. That she has belatedly admitted some things and is slightly better than Trump on this doesn’t do her much credit.

There was nothing heartfelt or spontaneous about this from Clinton, it is carefully constructed arse covering.

The BBC reports: What’s the reaction?

Not good for Mrs Clinton.

Vox, a liberal leaning media outlet, was not impressed by her latest bid to tamp down the controversy. It wrote:

“Her statement falls short as an apology, attempting to deflect attention onto others and failing to address some of the key issues in the case. Hillary Clinton is not directly responsible for Strider’s conduct during her campaign. But she is responsible for how she reacted to it – a reaction that affected a woman’s career and that may have left others vulnerable to harassment. Her statement on that reaction leaves a lot to be desired.”

Houston Chronicle opinion columnist Alyssa Rosenberg wrote:

“It’s been the longest relationship of my life as a voter, and as a writer on culture and politics. But after last week, and the revelation that she failed to take her campaign manager’s advice and fire an aide accused of sexual harassment in 2008, Hillary Clinton and I are done. And to be honest, it’s probably overdue.”

Clinton dealt with the offending poorly in 2008, and now in 2018 she has responded poorly.

She was already done, but she has just whacked another nail or two in her political coffin.

 

Obama and Clinton revisited

For those who complain about the attention Trump keeps getting from media, he is not the only one under ongoing scrutiny:

That is looking back ten years.

And…

One should expect the current President of the United States of America to attract the most attention compared to past presidents and failed candidates.