Wake Up To Politics - March 11, 2015
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Wednesday, March 11, 2015
608 Days Until Election Day 2016It's Wednesday, March 11, 2015, I'm Gabe Fleisher for Wake Up To Politics, and reporting from WUTP world HQ in my bedroom - Good morning: THIS IS YOUR WAKE UP CALL!!!
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- Hillary Clinton Answers Questions on Email Controversy Hillary Clinton held a press conference Tuesday to answer questions about her controversial use of just a personal email account while serving as Secretary of State.
- Clinton said the decision was “for convenience,” so she would only have to use one device, but “It would have been better had I used a second email account,” Clinton admitted.
- The former Secretary of State also said she used the personal account for both personal and official emails, and deleted many personal emails instead of delivering them to the State Department. “After I left office,” Clinton said, “The State Department asked former secretaries of state for our assistance in providing copies of work- related emails from our personal accounts. I responded right away and provided all my emails that could possibly be work-related, which totaled roughly 55,000 printed pages…We went through a thorough process to identify all of my work- related emails and deliver them to the State Department. At the end, I chose not to keep my private personal emails…about planning Chelsea's wedding or my mother's funeral arrangements, condolence notes to friends as well as yoga routines, family vacations, the other things you typically find in inboxes.”
- Clinton insisted that all deleted emails were strictly personal and will not be released: “The server will remain private,” she said.
- After the press conference, a statement from Clinton’s office explained in detail the emails that were turned over to the State Department, and weren’t. According to the statement, 62,320 emails were sent from Clinton’s account, email@example.com, while she was Secretary of State. Of these, 30,490 were printed and delivered to the State Department – 55,000 pages in total, while 31,380 were determined to be “private, personal records” and not turned over. Emails that were received by “.gov” addresses, included the names of government officials, and included terms such as “Libya” and “Benghazi,” among other determinations, were turned over.
- In the 60,000+ emails of Clinton’s, her office says none included classified information, and just one was with a foreign official – who was from the United Kingdom. The emails also included exchanges with President Barack Obama, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest admitted Monday. “The president — as I think many people expected — did over the course of his first several years in office trade emails with the secretary of state,” Earnest said.
- This admission by the White House has come under fire from Republicans, in light of President Obama’s comments to a CBS report Saturday, saying he learned about Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email account only “through news reports”.
- In addition to questions raised about transparency ahead of Clinton’s likely 2016 presidential run, the email controversy has also affected the investigation into the 2012 Benghazi attacks.
- “Secretary Clinton alone created this predicament,” House Select Committee on Benghazi chair Trey Gowdy said, announcing his call for Clinton to appear twice before his panel, “But she alone does not get to determine its outcome. These public records at issue are broader than Libya and broader than Benghazi. The Secretary of State has enormous responsibility and jurisdiction and the public, the media and Congress have a legal right to access these public records without impediment.”
- State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki announced Tuesday that all 55,000 pages of emails sent by Clinton in the department’s possession will be released to the public in the coming months, and the 900 pages of emails related to Benghazi will be released before the entire set.
- While Clinton’s news conference, her first since leaving the State Department, set to rest some questions surrounding her use of a personal email account, many are still being asked of Clinton by reporters. The most consequential question is directed at the voters, however: 20 months away from the 2016 elections, does this email controversy truly matter?
- WHAT DO YOU THINK? Email firstname.lastname@example.org (which is strictly used for business, for the record) with your answer: does this controversy matter to the 2016 elections? Tell me what you think, and your response could be printed in Wake Up To Politics.
- My main takeaway question: What is the significance of “hdr22,” her email username? I badly wanted a reporter to ask this at the press conference. ANY THOUGHTS? Email me at email@example.com (you might be able to tell how I came up with the name of my email)
- Today’s 2016 Must-Read “White House Hopefuls Highlight Working-Class Struggles: Their Own” by Jonathan Martin of the New York Times
- “One endured a childhood without running water, another spent his youth toiling over a McDonald’s grill and yet another is the son of a man who came to America with money sewn in his underwear.
- “You would be forgiven if you mistook the initial introductions of the 2016 presidential candidates for latter-day, and somewhat clichéd, versions of a Horatio Alger story.
- “The current White House hopefuls appear eager to outdo one another in recounting their up-from-poverty biographies, even if it means reaching back more than one generation.
- “Candidates have sought to highlight their hardscrabble roots since the republic was young. Robert Strauss, the former Democratic chairman who died last year, once said every politician wants every voter to believe he was born in a log cabin he built himself. Yet as members of this group of presidential aspirants travel the circuit of banquets and forums, they seem intent on also claiming credit for chopping down the tree that supplied the logs.”
- “For the Republicans, there is a tactical reason to contrast themselves with Mr. Bush, but the need to portray themselves as average Americans is even more fundamental. The last two Republican presidential nominees, each wealthy, lost in part because voters did not believe the candidates could relate to their struggles.”
- Rep. Donna Edwards Joins Race for Mikulski Seat Rep. Donna Edwards (D-MD) announced Tuesday she was running for U.S. Senate in Maryland, for the seat opened up by Democrat Barbara Mikulski’s retirement.
- Edwards’ announcement sets up a battle between her and Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), who represents the neighboring district to Edwards’ in the U.S. House. Van Hollen, who announced his campaign for the seat last week, is seen to be the establishment candidate, as ranking member of the House Budget Committee and a top ally of House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi. Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), who leads the caucus both Edwards and Hollen hope to join, has endorsed Van Hollen, which could lead to some awkward caucus meetings if Edwards wins the nomination. Meanwhile, Edwards has already nabbed the endorsement of many progressive groups.
- Van Hollen and Edwards are expected to be joined in the primary race by other Democrats, including more members of Maryland’s congressional delegation. This could open up even more House seats as a result of Mikulski’s announcement, causing a domino effect of sorts.
- The races for both Van Hollen’s and Edwards’ seats have started, with Marriott executive and former news anchor Kathleen Matthews, wife of MSNBC host Chris Matthews, considering a run for Van Hollen’s Seat, which would be interesting, to say the least. Candidates have already announced bids for both House seats.
- Edwards, 56, would become just the fifth African-American elected to the Senate; Mikulski, who she is vying to succeed, was the longest-serving female member of Congress in American history.
Capitol Hill News
- Today in the House Not in session
- Today in the Senate The chamber continues to consider S.178, a bill which would “provide justice for the victims of trafficking”.
- The bipartisan bill briefly caused controversy Tuesday when Democrats said they were tricked by Republican senators who had included a prohibition on federal funding for abortion, although it turned out the provision had been agreed to be Democratic negotiators, who had failed to read the entire bill.
- Today in Committees The Senate Foreign Relations Committee will hold a hearing today on President Obama’s request Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) against the Islamic State group.
- Secretary of State John Kerry, Defense Secretary Ashton Carter, and Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff will all testify. The trio should be prepared for tough questions from both sides of the aisle, with members of the President’s own party apparently driving opposition to the authorization.
Question of the Day
- Today’s Question Today’s 2016 Must-Read (above) was about presidential candidates competing to showcase their hardscrabble roots, and includes a log cabin analogy (although none of the potential candidates grew up in one, of course). But many past presidents have. Who was the most recent president or vice president to have been born in a log cabin?
- Monday’s Answer On Monday, I asked about Trace Adams, the ten-year-old South Carolinian who asked President Obama for advice about a presidential bid. The question was: Adams can first run for President in 2040, so what is the earliest number President he could be (using the chronological numbering where Clinton was 42, George W. Bush was 43, Obama was 44, what is the earliest Adams could be?)
- Barring any deaths or resignations, Adams could be President #48. If #45 (Obama’s replacement), #46, and #47 all serve two terms. Joe Bookman points out that three consecutive two-termers is rare, but we are currently at the end of that happening (with Clinton, Bush, and Obama all being elected to two terms)
- If he takes office in 2041, the latest number president Trace Adams could be is #51, if his six immediate predecessors serve one term.
- For the record: the earliest # I could be is also 48, although I could get there if one of my three immediate predecessors serve one term, and the likelihood is there would be one (of course the likelihood of a president being elected the first year they are eligible is also small)
- GREAT JOB…Christa Van Herreweghe, Joe Bookman, and Jordan Ottenstein who all did the math correctly and got this answer right!