The State Department released another enormous batch of emails from Hillary Clinton’s private server on Monday, bringing the total number of classified missives to nearly 1,000. As always, Clinton’s campaign spokespeople are ready with their usual excuse – that these emails did not contain classified information at the time they were sent. This information only became secret at some vague point in the ensuing years. Because that makes sense.
The new batch doesn’t provide much in the way of Clinton’s TV viewing schedule, but it does show a woman who surrounded herself with flatterers while at the State Department. Included in the emails were messages of effusive praise for the secretary after she lost her cool at the Benghazi hearings. Challenged at one point about the motives behind the attacks, Clinton memorably yelled, “What difference, at this point, does it make?”
Republicans (and most non-partisan observers) considered this a low point in the testimony, but Clinton’s top aide – Huma Abedin – emailed her at the time with glowing praise.
“I’m being flooded with emails about how you rocked,” Abedin wrote. “And you looked fabulous.”
Do you ever wonder about the relationship between Abedin and Clinton?
Clinton is probably not the only politician in Washington surrounded by yes-men and sycophants, but it does explain quite a lot about her. Why, for instance, it took her so long to apologize for putting American security in jeopardy with this private email server. Why she seems to think she is entitled to the presidency. Why she thinks “being a woman” is more than enough reason for Americans to vote for her next November. When everything that comes out of your mouth is received as golden wisdom by your closest aides, it’s tough to see yourself as anything but a genius.
One political consultant – Mark Penn – apparently realized that Clinton was not necessarily getting the perspective she needed. He sent her an email telling her that she might have made a mistake by losing her cool in the hearings.
But this was immediately countered by aide Philippe Reines. “Give me a break,” Reines wrote. “You did not look rattled. You looked real. There’s a difference. A big one.”
Reines knew where his bread was buttered.
Confidence is a good and necessary trait for the president of the United States to have. But when that confidence is based on the false flattery of people whose careers depend on your grace, it solidifies into a dangerous species of arrogance. These emails show that Clinton put our national security at risk no less than 1,000 times. But they also show that she is psychologically incapable of admitting error. That, in the end, may be an even stronger reason to keep her out of the White House.