Hillary Clinton’s long-awaited apology for using a personal email account may have come from the heart, but it also could have been the unavoidable conclusion drawn from a New Hampshire focus group session held last week.
According to The New York Times, Clinton’s aides showed a focus group of New Hampshire independents and Democrats a video of a news conference Clinton held late last month in which she discussed the controversy over her personal email use.
“Participants said they wanted to hear more from Mrs. Clinton about the issue,” The Times reported.
“The focus group also showed that the email issue was drowning out nearly everything else that Mrs. Clinton was hoping to communicate to voters — something Mrs. Clinton and her husband have complained about to friends,” the article continues.
The message apparently reverberated with Clinton who on Tuesday told ABC News’ David Muir that she thinks she “could have and should have done a better job answering questions earlier” about her use of a personal email account as secretary of state.
“I really didn’t perhaps appreciate the need to do that,” she continued, adding that her exclusive use of the personal email account “was a mistake.”
“I’m sorry about that. I take responsibility.”
Clinton began a shift towards a more conciliatory tone on Friday when she told MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell that she was sorry that the email fiasco has been so “confusing” for the American public. On Monday she told the Associated Press that she did not feel the need to apologize, saying that the State Department allowed it.