With the media exclusively attuned to every new, or 11-year-old as the case may be, twist in the Trump “sex tape” saga, it appeared that everyone forgot that a little over 24 hours ago, Wikileaks exposed the real reason why Hillary was keeping her Wall Street speech transcripts – which we now know had always been within easy reach for her campaign – secret. In her own words: “if everybody’s watching, you know, all of the back room discussions and the deals, you know, then people get a little nervous, to say the least. So, you need both a public and a private position.” In other words, you have to lie to the general public while promising those who just paid you $250,000 for an hour of your speaking time something entirely different, which is precisely what those accusing Hillary of hiding her WS transcripts had done; and as yesterday’s hacked documents revealed, they were right.
The Clinton campaign refused to disavow the hacked excerpts, although it quickly tired to pin the blame again on Russia: “We are not going to confirm the authenticity of stolen documents released by Julian Assange, who has made no secret of his desire to damage Hillary Clinton,” spokesman Glen Caplin said in a prepared statement. Previous releases have “Guccifer 2.0 has already proven the warnings of top national security officials that documents can be faked as part of a sophisticated Russian misinformation campaign.”
Ironically, it was literally minutes before the Wikileaks release of the “Podesta Files” that the US formally accused Russia of waging a hacking cyber attack on the US political establishment, almost as if it knew Wikileaks was about to make the major disclosure, and sought to minimize its impact by scapegoating Vladimir Putin.
And while the Trump campaign tried to slam the leak, with spokesman saying “now we finally get confirmation of Clinton’s catastrophic plans for completely open borders and diminishing America’s influence in the world. There is a reason Clinton gave these high-paid speeches in secret behind closed doors – her real intentions will destroy American sovereignty as we know it, further illustrating why Hillary Clinton is simply unfit to be president”, Trump’s campaign had its own raging inferno to deal with.
So, courtesy of what Trump said about some woman 11 years ago, in all the din over the oddly coincident Trump Tape leak, most of the noise created by the Hillary speeches was lost.
But not all.
According to Reuters, supporters of former Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders on Saturday “seethed“, and “expressed anger and vindication over leaked comments made by Hillary Clinton to banks and big business that appeared to confirm their fears about her support for global trade and tendency to cozy up to Wall Street.“
Clinton, who last it emerged had slammed Bernie supporters as “basement dwellers” in a February fundraiser, with virtually no media coverage, needs Sanders’ coalition of young and left-leaning voters to propel her to the presidency, pushes for open trade and open borders in one of the speeches, and takes a conciliatory approach to Wall Street, both positions she later backed away from in an effort to capture the popular appeal of Sanders’ attacks on trade deals and powerful banks.
Needless to say, there was no actualy “backing away”, and instead Hillary did what he truly excels in better than most: she told the public what they wanted to hear, and will promptly reneg on once she becomes president.
Only now, this is increasingly obvious to America’s jilted youth: “this is a very clear illustration of why there is a fundamental lack of trust from progressives for Hillary Clinton,” said Tobita Chow, chair of the People’s Lobby in Chicago, which endorsed Sanders in the primary election.
“The progressive movement needs to make a call to Secretary Clinton to clarify where she stands really on these issues and that’s got to involve very clear renunciations of the positions that are revealed in these transcripts,” Chow said.
Good luck that, or even getting a response, even though Hillary was largely spared from providing one: as Reuters correctly observes, the revelations were immediately overshadowed by the release of an 11-year-old recording of Donald Trump, the Republican presidential nominee, making lewd comments about women. In fact, the revelations were almost entirely ignored by the same prime time TV that has been glued to the Trump slow-motion trainwreck over the past 24 hours.
Still, the hacked speeches could lead to further erosion in support from the so very critical to her successful candidacy, young American voter.
Clinton has worked hard to build trust with so-called progressives, adopting several of Sanders’ positions after she bested him in the primary race. The U.S. senator from Vermont now supports his former rival in the Nov. 8 general election against Trump. Still, Clinton has struggled to win support from young “millennials” who were crucial to Sanders’ success, and some Democrats expressed concern that the leaks would discourage those supporters from showing up to vote.
“That is a big concern and this certainly doesn’t help,” said Larry Cohen, chair of the board of Our Revolution, a progressive organization formed in the wake of Sanders’ bid for the presidency, which aims to keep pushing the former candidate’s ideas at a grassroots level. “It matters in terms of turnout, energy, volunteering, all those things.”
Still, despite the Trump media onslaught, the message appeared to filter through to those who would be most impacted by Hillary selling out her voters if she were to win the presidency.
“Bernie was right about Hillary,” wrote Facebook user Grace Tilly cited by Rueters, “she’s a tool for Wall Street.”
“Clinton is the politicians’ politician – exactly the Wall Street insider Bernie described,” wrote Facebook user Brian Leach.
Democratic strategist Steve Elmendorf said progressive voters would still choose the former first lady, even with misgivings. “I’d like to meet the Bernie Sanders supporter who is going to say, ‘Well I’m a little worried about her on international trade, so I’m going to vote for Donald Trump’,” he said.
He just may meet a few, especially if Bernie’s supporters ask themselves why Bernie’s support for Hillary remained so unwavering despite a leak confirming that Hillary was indeed all he had previously railed against.
In a statement earlier, Sanders responded to the leak by saying that despite Hillary’s paid speeches to Wall Street in which she expressed an agenda diametrically opposite to that espoused by the Vermont socialist, he reiterated his his support for the Democratic Party platform.
“Whatever Secretary Clinton may or may not have said behind closed doors on Wall Street, I am determined to implement the agenda of the Democratic Party platform which was agreed upon by her campaign,” he said in a statement.
“Among other things, that agenda calls for breaking up the largest financial institutions in this country, re-establishing Glass-Steagall and prosecuting those many Wall Street CEOs who engaged in illegal behavior.“
In retrospect we find it fascinating that in the aftermath of October’s two big surprises served up on Friday, Sanders actually believes any of that having read through Hillary’s Wall Street speeches, certainly far more fascinating than the staged disgust with Trump who, the media is suddenly stunned to find, was no more politically correct 11 year ago than he is today.