Clinton’s Campaign Flagged Comments Made During Closed-Door Speeches
Hillary Clinton’s campaign seems to have known that many of the comments she made in her six-figure speeches would pose political problems for the candidate. That’s why the campaign’s director of research compiled an 80-page dossier of “flags” found in her speeches.
The initial wave of reporting on Friday of the in-house opposition file focused on Clinton’s praise of Wall Street firms, such as Goldman Sachs. And perhaps more jarring was her comment in a May 2013 speech that her “dream” was “a hemispheric common market, with open trade and open borders.” (RELATED: Hillary Tells Bankers: ‘My Dream Is Open Borders’)
Other flagged items show why the campaign refused to release transcripts of Clinton’s comments. But they came to light on Friday after Wikileaks released emails from the Gmail account of Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta.
Here are the highlights.
Praised TPP more recently than known
Clinton’s massive flip-flop on the Trans-Pacific Partnership has been documented extensively. She came out against the trade deal last year, going against the stance of President Obama and following the lead of Bernie Sanders. CNN counted that Clinton had praised the deal at least 45 times in the past, once calling the plan the “gold standard” of trade deals.
But one Clinton speech shows that she was in favor of TPP much more recently than previously known.
“Greater connections in our own hemisphere hold such promise. The United States and Canada are working together with a group of open market democracies along the Pacific Rim, Mexico, Colombia, Peru, Chile, to expand responsible trade and economic cooperation,” Clinton said during a speech hosted by Canada 2020 on Oct. 6, 2014, just over six months before she declared her candidacy.
Clinton told disputed story about being rejected by the Marines in 1975
One of the items Clinton’s campaign flagged was a story she told during a Sept. 18, 2013 meeting of the American Society for Clinical Pathology about the time in 1975 when she was rejected by the Marines.
Clinton told a questioner that she was not rejected because she was a woman, though in the past she has suggested that her gender was one reason she was turned away.
“Is it true that until 1975 you applied for the Marines and they told you no because you were a female?” a questioner asked.
“No,” Clinton responded.
She said that she was 26 or 27 when she walked into a Marine recruiting office in Arkansas. “I said to the young Marine, I said, ‘Well, you know, I’d be interested in getting some information to see whether I could maybe serve. I’m a lawyer. Maybe I could help in some way,'” she recalled.
“‘Well, I think you are too old for the Marines but maybe the dogs will take you,'” Clinton recalled the recruiter saying, referring to the Army as “the dogs.”
When Clinton told that story as first lady in 1994, she suggested that her gender also had something to do with her rejection. (RELATED: Hillary Clinton Gives Conflicting Account Of Trying To Join Marines)
“You’re too old, you can’t see and you’re a woman,” the recruiter told Clinton, she claimed during a June 1994 luncheon hosted for female military veterans.
But Clinton’s more recent version — the one where she was rejected just for being too old — has also been called into question. Some of Clinton’s friends who knew her at the time have suggested that she was conducting an undercover investigation into military recruiting practices. Clinton had conducted other similar investigations to find out if institutions were biased against minority groups.
Worried about immigrants losing food stamps
During her remarks at General Electric’s Global Leadership Meeting in Boca Raton, Fla. on Jan. 6, 2014, Clinton lamented that some lawmakers wanted to cut government spending on food stamps. And part of her concern was that immigrants would lose the subsidy.
“You know, there’s always the instance where they find one guy somewhere who misused food stamps,” she told the crowd of executives.
“Well, come with me,” she continued. “Come with me into, you know, even neighbors near where I live in Westchester County north of New York City where a lot of immigrants, a lot of, you know, people down on their luck use those food stamps just to try to get through the month, and the House of Representatives is cutting them off.”
Major Clinton Foundation donor bragged about access to Hillary’s State Department
The Clinton campaign didn’t just flag Clinton’s remarks in the dossier. It also made note of detrimental remarks made by moderators. In one case, GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt remarked on how much help his company received from Clinton’s State Department.
GE has contributed between $500,000 and $1 million to the Clinton Foundation.
“The State Department I would say and the aspect of selling completely changed when Secretary Clinton came in office,” Immelt said during the Boca Raton executive retreat.
He said that before Clinton took office, the U.S. government offered only nominal support for major corporations looking for business around the world.
But that changed when Clinton came into office.
“And when Secretary Clinton and a guy named Bob Hormats who was a Goldman Sachs guy that we all knew for a long time, it all changed where we were on offense all the time,” Immelt said. “State was in the lead frequently when we were trying to do that, and I think it helped the business context for the company massively, and that’s really what I think the Secretary did on our behalf, so fantastic.”
Joked to futures markets execs about her shady cattle futures profits
Clinton made light of one of the very first Clinton scandals — the one involving her massive profit on a $1,000 investment in cattle futures when she was first lady of Arkansas.
“Now, it’s always a little bit risky for me to come speak to a group that is committed to the futures markets because — there’s a few knowing laughs — many years ago, I actually traded in the futures markets,” Clinton said at an event hosted by the CME Group, a futures market company, on Nov. 18, 2013.
“I mean, this was so long ago, it was before computers were invented, I think. And I worked with a group of like-minded friends and associates who traded in pork bellies and cotton and other such things, and I did pretty well. I invested about a thousand dollars and traded up to about a hundred thousand,” she continued.
In 1978, Clinton turned less than $1,000 into nearly $100,000 within 10 months by investing in cattle futures. The massive gain was investigated after Bill Clinton became president, but investigators (led by the father of a Chicago Mercantile Exchange chairman) said there was no wrong-doing.
The case against Clinton has been laid out in great detail. In 1995, National Review published an in-depth analysis of the evidence against the first lady.
Praised Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel for “working very hard” on gun violence
Chicago is experiencing a murder epidemic on mayor Rahm Emanuel’s watch. And it had spiked in 2012, Emanuel’s first year in office. Nevertheless, Clinton praised the former White House aide for what she said was his hard work on gun violence.
“I know that Mayor Emanuel and the government of Chicago and a lot of the partners in the community throughout Chicago are working very hard to try to get a handle on what is a terrible blight of gun violence in Chicago,” she said during a speech on Sept. 18, 2013.
Murders in Chicago so far this year have already passed last year’s total.
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