Friday, July 8, 2016

Hillary News & Views 7/8/16: BLM, Veepstakes, Sanders' Support, and Comey's Hearing

Guest post by violining247

Greetings all from Blacksburg, VA, where the Dems on the ground are doing great work! By the time you all are reading this, I will be en route to Philadelphia for the weekend, then NYC for a few days early next week (off to the Brooklyn HQ!). I will fill you all in on more details of my trip at some point in the next day or so in a “Roadtripping for Hillary” installment, so stay tuned. For now, though, the news roundup…
Yesterday morning, Hillary herself tweeted in response to the atrocity of the Philando Castile police shooting, with several follow-up tweets from her staff. 
America woke up to yet another tragedy of a life cut down too soon. Black Lives Matter.  -H

Too many African American families are mourning. Too many young black men and women have been taken from us.
This  shooting comes on the heels of a similar incident involving Alton Sterling, an unarmed black man killed by police, about which Hillary released a statement on Wednesday. One excerpt worth pointing to, which alludes to policies she would promote to keep these incidents from happening with the appalling frequency that they do now.
I am glad the Department of Justice has agreed to a full and thorough review of this shooting. Incidents like this one have undermined the trust between police departments and the communities they serve. We need to rebuild that trust. We need to ensure justice is served. That begins with common sense reforms like ending racial profiling, providing better training on de-escalation and implicit bias, and supporting municipalities that refer the investigation and prosecution of police-involved deaths to independent bodies. 
What’s for sure: we need to do something, because the status quo is unacceptable. 
Now, for some good news, because we sure need it. After a month of tallying votes,Hillary has officially been declared the winner of California’s primary.
It lasted longer than the 1979 conflict between China and Vietnam, but California's slow-moving count of provisional and mail-in ballots is finally over — and as expected, Hillary Clinton won.
Wednesday night, after ballots were finally processed in San Mateo County, Clinton had won 2,745,293 votes to 2,381,714 for Bernie Sanders. The eventual margin was 363,579 votes, or 7.1 percentage points, closer than the 2008 primary between Clinton and Barack Obama.
It was closer, too, than Sanders seemed to get on election night, when a rout bigger than any poll had suggested effectively ended the Democratic primary. Since then, Sanders added 879,671 votes to his California total; Clinton added 804,713 votes. As expected, most of the outstanding ballots left on June 7 were cast for Democratic candidates, and as expected, they broke for Sanders. (For a sense of California's scale, Sanders won more votes in the long provisional/mail-in count than he won, total, in the New York primary — 820,256 votes.)
Speculation also continues to swirl around who Hillary will pick as VP. Yesterday she “[spent] a rare day away from the campaign trail and the fundraising circuit” huddling with her inner circle at her D.C. home to dig into the research on each and further narrow the list of contenders.
The list of contenders Clinton is seriously weighing is believed to be fewer than five, several Democrats familiar with the process say, and all contenders are not on equal footing. She has a preferred candidate or two in mind, CNN has learned, but intends to keep her options open until Donald Trump reveals his selection.
    Clinton is leaning toward announcing her decision immediately after the Republican convention ends on July 21. But aides say she is leaving open the possibility of waiting until Democrats are already gathering for their convention in Philadelphia the following week to disclose her selection, hoping to stoke drama and build interest in the Democratic ticket.
    Clinton, according to aides, has been extraordinarily involved in the day-to-day aspects of the search and has received regular updates about the process. The meeting at Clinton's home on Thursday is an opportunity to study the complete picture of her final list of candidates and the last step before meeting face-to-face again with her top choices.
    Clinton's top considerations, aides tell CNN, is someone who does not harm her chances against Trump, a partner who gets along well with her and is credible at stepping into the presidency should anything happen. Economic issues and an ability to raise money for the campaign are also key attributes.
    The article seems to favor Tim Kaine as the likely pick (I know, I know...not our first choice), but Elizabeth Warren is also believed to be on the short list, along with a few others. Now, do as we all do best and speculate/rant below!
    While Kaine may not do a whole lot to excite the true-blue lefties in the party, one thing that might help out is a Bernie Sanders endorsement, which now seems imminent.
    After three weeks of private preparations, Senator Bernie Sanders is expected to endorse Hillary Clinton on Tuesday at a campaign event in New Hampshire, according to three Democrats who have been involved in the planning.
    The Clinton campaign on Thursday announced the New Hampshire trip but did not provide details, including any mention of Mr. Sanders.
    Mr. Sanders, in an interview Thursday with Bloomberg View’s Al Hunt, came as close to endorsing Mrs. Clinton as he ever has, saying: “We have got to do everything that we can to defeat Donald Trump and elect Hillary Clinton. I don’t honestly know how we would survive four years of a Donald Trump as president.”
    Bolding is mine. Notice he is now also emphasizing we have to elect Hillary, not just defeat Trump. This shift in rhetoric is huge, and I for one very much welcome Bernie’s support. Assuming everything goes as expected and he endorses on Tuesday, I think this will go a long way towards healing the rifts in the party that have developed over the course of the primary, especially if he goes on to actively campaign for her in blue-collar areas and college towns. Talk about Team Blue going full-throttle into November!
    As might be expected, now that the FBI and DOJ have recommended no charges in the neverending, godforsaken saga that is Eghazi, the GOP has caught a massive case of CDS. The latest manifestation was in their dragging James Comey, Director of the FBI, in for a hearing before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. It backfired spectacularly
    [N]ote that on Tuesday, the story looked like Comey vs. Clinton – the FBI director didn’t think the Democratic candidate broke any laws, but he clearly wasn’t pleased with some of her decisions, and he delivered a public rebuke. Now the story is Comey vs. Republicans – GOP lawmakers had some baseless allegations and reckless conspiracy theories, some of which targeted Comey directly, and they asked the FBI director to give testimony knocking down each of their bad arguments.
    For their part, Democrats suddenly found themselves keeping up with Republican attempts to change the subject – talking about Clinton’s emails is suddenly less important than talking about Comey’s credibility and reliability.
    When congressional Republicans take stock this evening and reflect on their failed gambit, one wonders whether they’ll appreciate the fact that this Comey hearing was a bad plan, executed poorly. The last time Democrats were this pleased with GOP hearing, it was Clinton’s 11-hour Benghazi Committee testimony – in which Republicans made fools of themselves and their conspiracy theories, and Clinton turned her entire presidential campaign around.
    It helps sometimes to be blessed with incompetent enemies.
    Politics USA puts it more dramatically in an article titled “Republicans May Have Gotten Hillary Elected President with the Comey Hearing.”
    While being questioned by Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) over the potentially chilling effects of the hearing, Director Comey said, “My honest answer is, I don’t think so. When I talked to the Chairman, I agreed to come because I think the American people care deeply about this. There’s all kinds of folks watching at home being told well lots of other cases are being prosecuted and she wasn’t. I want them to know that’s not true. So I want to have this conversation, and I actually welcome the opportunity.”
    Republicans and conservative media have been running around screaming at the top of their lungs that other people were prosecuted in similar cases, but Clinton wasn’t. However, as the FBI Director testified that isn’t true. The Petraeus case was nothing like the Clinton case. David Petraeus was caught on tape admitting to his mistress that he knew he was leaking classified information. There is not evidence or precedent for a person in Hillary Clinton’s situation facing criminal charges.
    Director Comey went on to say that he thought that the hearing was good for transparency and democracy, but throughout his testimony, Comey has largely backed up what Hillary Clinton has been saying about her use of private email.
    Maybe while they’re at it they can do another 11-hour testimony with Hillary about the emails? I’d be game to watch her dominate the GOP all over again. At any rate, on this matter I leave you with the wit of Brian Fallon’s Twitter account.
    Trying to identify what GOP gained out of today, but struggling. They got Comey to say Clinton was not tech-savvy. So there's that, I guess.
    (originally posted at Daily Kos)
    Editor's note:
    In that spirit, I believe it best to not focus on the usual politics for the rest of the day. Take care, everyone. -Scott


    1. the hearing wasn't good for them, they postured, and maybe it was good for fund-raising, but they had to attack a fellow Republican, who had gifted them with a smear that was fact-rebutted during that hearing.

      Comey had to source his claim that three emails that had a 'marking' that should have clued her in, and he said it was the lowest level, confidential, and the markings she ought to have recognized were (c)'s. Which normally is a lettered paragraph, not a note. But he had not known that those three (c)'s ought to have been taken out with the other markings when those documents were finalized from the drafts,

      they were clerical mistakes.

      And without the hearing that would still be an unexplained smear.

      Their goal for that hearing was to paint her as incompetent, brought up that he'd said she lacked sophistication, but he corrected that to IT sophistication and told the world she hasn't a computer in her office. And he also explained another misunderstanding in the released materials that they'd thought was proof of her 'crime,' that she'd asked for a document to be made not-classfied meant removing all the classified data, not just removing the designation header. You could hear the deflation when he said that.

      And they want another one that will help, they want him to compare what she said to congress with what she said to him, so it'll also be impossible for them to imply she'd lied, what idiots, they forgot that you're not supposed to ask unless you know for sure you'll get the answer you want. So, that's just stupid of them, seriously stupid.

      And now State is opening it up again, they didn't like Comey's conclusion that they are lax on security, they aren't lax on security.

      They are pissed he didn't coordinate his enquiry with them so he could have avoided making his wrong conclusions. That is his weak part, he can't imagine there is something he needs to know before he flaps his gums.

      That's why he ought to have followed the rules and checked with 'public', al la ""If it is a national case, press conferences must be approved by the Director, Office of Public Affairs."
      Director Melanie Newman probably would have told him,

      "if you are making that claim make damn sure State agrees with you on the meaning of those three (c)'s. Three out of 30,000+ makes it more likely your mistake."

    2. Great! This was a nice read after the sad news of last nite and today.