Clinton camp: Calls for the release of Clinton’s Wall Street speech transcripts “very offensive”
You know, one time I didn’t want my parents to see my not-exactly-applying-myself report card. So I said the dog ate it. No, actually, my friend had it. Hmm, now that I think about it, I think I accidentally burned it. There was no way I was going to let my school principal father lay eyes on that thing. Wasn’t happening. I think I might have been grounded til I was 25, not sure, but in the end I never produced it. Lying seemed better (I was a little kid, and in retrospect, I should have just bit the bullet and fessed up – but who knew). When I hear Hillary Clinton’s multiple excuses for not releasing those Wall Street speech transcripts I think of that time in my childhood. I know why I didn’t want my folks to see that report card: It had F’s on it. And for the same reason, Hillary Clinton’s Wall Street speeches are filled with what the American public will consider political “F-‘s.” I’ll lay odds that my dismal report card in 5th grade, with all its F’s, would look better than the contents of Clinton’s Wall Street speeches would look to the voting public.
So that’s why she won’t release them, and that’s why we hear repeated versions of “the dog ate my homework.” I mean, come on, we all knew that she wouldn’t release them when Bernie released his tax returns. He did that today and she jetted off to a fundraiser. (Maybe George Clooney is holding them in his safe and she went to retrieve them so as to keep her word; anything is possible.) No, the clear, unequivocal message from Clinton last night and for the past months is (and I paraphrase), “I’ll release them when monkeys fly out of my ass.”
Clinton’s campaign is sweating bullets trying to do damage control around this issue. Her spokeswoman, Karen Finney, told Erica Hill on MSNBC that calls for Clinton to release her transcripts is “very offensive,” because after all, kids are sick or can’t afford college or some shit, and given all the shit on shit out there, the release of the transcripts is “not something you care about.”
Well again, Sen. Sanders is, you know, trying to use this to make an allegation to which he has absolutely no response when asked where is the proof . . . So, you know, I think a lot of voters also find that very offensive . . . This is what the Sanders campaign wants, right? The insinuation that there is something nefarious . . . .
Really, this is their damage control, saying that Bernie has no proof that her policy decisions have been and will be influenced by the big money flowing her way and that voters don’t care? Grant you, Bernie could have gone harder on her during the debate – probably should have. But if they want proof that Clinton is more than a little influenced by those cozy relationships- well, we have that. More importantly, though, Finney is dead wrong: Voters want to know, too, what Clinton whispered in Wall Street’s ear. Bernie Sanders is not the only one who wants Clinton to disclose what she told Wall Street – an institution that nearly destroyed this country and is continuing its shenanigans today – behind closed doors. Kirsten Gillibrand, Clinton’s replacement as a New York Senator, suggested that tax returns are a better way to judge each candidate; well, Bernie released his today, so judge away. Another Clinton mouthpiece, Kristina Schake (in the picture below), told MSNBC’s José Díaz-Balart today that “Sen. Sanders has been attacking Hillary on this for quite some time, but there is a basic standard for transparency in campaigns, and that’s that you release your taxes. He’s been attacking her on transcripts, but he himself has not released his taxes. As she said last night, she just wants to be held to the same standard as everyone else, and she’d like him to be, too.” (Next thing the Clinton camp will be saying is we want the transcripts released because she’s a woman.) MSNBC’s Diaz-Balart, of course, let Schake off the hook easily when she issued her lame response, but I imagine that, since Bernie Sanders released his 2014 returns today – and they are, as Politico noted, as boring as he predicted – they’ll drop that line quick fast and in a hurry.
But no matter what the Clinton camp peddles in its highly unsuccessful quest to end this thing, the issue is very simple. For Clinton to be held to the same standard as Bernie Sanders – her only opponent right now – she’d release the transcripts. Clinton slammed him for not releasing his taxes, and used that at last night’s debate as the reason for her refusal to release her transcripts; now he’s released his taxes. She said she’d release hers when all the other candidates did; well, the Republican candidates aren’t running on tough-on-Wall-Street platforms, and besides, she’s not running against them. Her only opponent, Bernie Sanders, has no Wall Street speeches and is utterly transparent and clear about his message to Wall Street, as well as his willingness to release his speeches:
I’m going to release all the transcripts [of speeches] I gave to Wall Street . . . Not for $225,000 . . . Not for $2,000, not for two cents — because there were no speeches.
She has two choices: Release the transcripts or just admit that she’ll coddle Wall Street if elected President. There’s no in-between.
Her stark refusal to be transparent to the American public is as obvious as it is unwise. She’s sustaining a lot of political damage with her refusal to release her screeds; her trustworthy ratings – which weren’t so hot to begin with – are in the tank. It’s clear, from both simple common sense and what attendees have said about those speeches, that what’s in the transcripts is even worse than the blows she’s taking – such as Twitter-trending #ReleaseTheTranscripts, and even politicos like David Axelrod and Martin O’Malley zinging her – for refusing to release them. As Rosette Newcomb from USUncut noted, the release of the Wall Street transcripts could, in fact, end Clinton’s campaign:
Should the content of these speeches become public, and should the accounts of attendees who described the speeches prove to be accurate, Democratic primary voters would suddenly know three things about Clinton they didn’t know before:
— Clinton will have proven herself to be susceptible to the influence of money from the financial sector, proving Bernie Sanders right.
— Clinton was lying about the content of her speeches, counting on the transcripts never being viewed by the public.
— Clinton’s promises to reform Wall Street will be proven to be empty campaign promises meant to be made while seeking votes and broken once a general election victory is secured.
We’ll never see those transcripts unless they’re leaked by Anonymous or some whistleblower. She’s got too much to protect and even more to hide. Millions of us already don’t trust her, but it seems apparent that her ardent supporters don’t care about her dishonesty and lack of trustworthiness. Me, I say let her keep twisting in the wind. In this election cycle, it’s no secret that integrity, good character, authenticity and honesty – Bernie Sanders’ trademarks – still matters.
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