Despite repeated assurances from Hillary Clinton campaign communications director Jennifer Palmieri that the hubbub surrounding the former secretary of state’s private server and emails (which some are now calling “Wipe-water”) will eventually blow over, the scandal continues to make daily headlines. So much in the news is this story that Clinton’s fellow Democrats have begun to wonder in earnest if this will sink her campaign. Some have even begun to speculate whether the candidate’s handlers are “in denial” over the scope and severity of the scandal.
The liberal media are likewise no longer accepting wholesale the continuing efforts by Team Clinton to brush off the controversy as a media-engineered, partisan witch-hunt. As Clinton stormed out of Tuesday’s presser after Ed Henry probed for answer about the scandal, NBC News reporter Kristen Welker asked her if she thought the email issue was going to go away for her campaign. Clinton replied with a wave, “Nobody talks to me about it other than you guys,” meaning the media.
Welker was a guest on this morning’s “Morning Joe,” where she said Clinton was wrong when she said voters didn’t care about her use of a private, unsecured server containing classified information while secretary of state:
I think it is a legitimate story, and I don’t think it’s just a construct of the media or of the Republicans for that matter. Her response that this is something that we only ask about, that we only care about, just doesn’t square with the conversations that I have with voters, quite frankly. Independents, undecideds and yes, Democrats, who say they have questions about this. They want answers from her.
I’ve been talking to some Democrats who say they’re worried that this is a campaign in denial about how serious this issue really is, and the fact that it is resonating with voters, and we’re seeing that of course bear out in some of these polls.”
Bloomberg’s John Heilemann, who was also on the panel, added that almost every Democratic voter asked him about the Clinton scandal when he was at the Iowa State Fair over the past week. They looked to him for information because they weren’t getting any from the campaign. And he added that potential Clinton supporters are “a little nervous, a little queasy” about the ongoing revelations.
Throughout her career Mrs. Clinton has seen her her husband get in and out of scandals and believes that she, like him, is covered with Teflon. But she is overlooking two important points: Even Bubba would fess up when he was caught red-handed. And more importantly, he is in a class by himself as a politician. Bill Clinton could bite his lower lip and say, “I feel your pain” and it was almost impossible to believe he was lying (even though he usually was).
On the other hand Hillary is a below-average campaigner and not as likable as her husband. As a result, she needs to abide by the more “classic” rules of politics. It seems that the former FLOTUS has forgotten the first rule of damage control — that it’s not the scandal that gets you; it’s the cover-up.
Watch the entire Morning Joe exchange below:
Cross-posted at The Lid