Clinton Campaign Blames Russia for Leaked Wall Street SpeechesOct. 15, 201601:52
The steady drip of stolen information on Hillary Clinton being released by WikiLeaks continued on Saturday, this time showing emails that purport to show transcripts of the remarks Clinton delivered to audiences of Goldman Sachs employees in 2013.
The emails have not been authenticated by NBC News. The transcripts purport to show speeches given in Tucson, Arizona, Bluffton, South Carolina and New York City. The paid speeches were given after Clinton’s tenure as secretary of state ended.
Clinton's speeches to Wall Street groups have been a source of considerable controversy throughout the 2016 campaign, particularly during the Democratic primary, when her challenger Sen. Bernie Sanders repeatedly called on the former Secretary of State to release the transcripts and she refused.
WikiLeaks has not said where it got the emails. The Clinton campaign and the U.S. Intelligence officials have blamed the Russian government for a series of cyber attacks on Democratic Party institutions.
OCT. 12: Wikileaks Continues Releasing Hacked Clinton Official's EmailsOct. 12, 201601:44
Clinton campaign spokesman Glen Caplin on Saturday accused Donald Trump of “cheering on a Russian attempt to influence our election through a crime reminiscent reminiscent of Watergate but on a more massive scale" and said "We’re witnessing another effort to steal private campaign documents in order to influence an election."
Related: Roger Stone Calls Claims of WikiLeaks Advance Warning 'Categorically False'
Here are some of the highlights from this latest round of emails alleged to have been stolen from her close adviser and campaign chairman John Podesta's emails:
Strategy on Syria
Clinton said that the best way to take on the Assad regime in Syria is as covertly as possible. "We used to be much better at this than we are now," she said, according to the documents. "Now, you know, everybody can't help themselves. They have to go out and tell their friendly reporters and somebody else: Look what we're doing and I want credit for it, and all the rest of it."
Ironically, Clinton has slammed Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump repeatedly for suggesting that it would be a mistake to publicize his ISIS strategy because it might tip off our adversaries.
She also discussed a no-fly zone, and said putting one in place could draw the U.S. and NATO further into the conflict, according to the documents.
"To have a no fly zone you have to take out all of the air defense, many of which are located in populated areas. So our missiles, even if they are standoff missiles so we're not putting our pilots at risk — you're going to kill a lot of Syrians," Clinton said, according to the documents. "So all of a sudden this intervention that people talk about so glibly becomes an American and NATO involvement where you take a lot of civilians."
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Impressions of the Media
Trump and many Republicans may believe that the media is "in the tank" for Clinton, but the Democratic nominee doesn't necessarily have the highest opinion of the press. In the Goldman Sachs transcripts, Clinton laments how "attention deficit disordered political punditry is" and argued that reporters were more focused on the issues during her tenure as Secretary of State.
"Our political press has just been captured by trivia," she said, according to the documents. " ... And so you don't want to give them any more time to trivialize the importance of the issues than you have to give them."
Relations with Russia
Although Clinton has been making that case that she would be far tougher on the Putin regime in Russia than her opponent, she did tell audiences in 2013 that should would "love it it we could continue to build a more positive relationship with Russia." She described her efforts as Secretary of State to improve relations with Russia and expresses hope that President Vladimir Putin would be "less defensive" towards working with the U.S. on issues where the two nations have mutual agreement. However, since Clinton's address, relations between the U.S. and Putin have only deteriorated further.
OCT. 13: WikiLeaks email hack shows Clinton weaknessesOct. 13, 201604:58
In 2013 Clinton also commented on controversial past WikiLeaks releases while she was still Secretary of State, according to the documents. Joking that she had a "rock star jacket" made for her own branded "Clinton Apology Tour," Clinton described having to apologize to foreign dignitaries who were characterized in leaked cables in an unflattering light. She also mocked some of these leaders sensitivity, saying "I had grown men cry. I mean, literally."
Related: Brennan WikiLeaks Dump Contains No Bombshells
The Value of Wall Street
Clinton spoke in great detail about what she saw as the root causes of the Great Recession and its fallout in subsequent years. In part, she said there should have been "greater transparency" on what went wrong from not just bankers but regulators and lawmakers, too. She also argued that an effort to prevent another crisis will require a buy-in from Wall Street itself, which she calls 'the nerves, the spinal column" of the economy.
"If you were an elected member of Congress and people in your constituency were losing jobs and shutting businesses and everybody in the press is saying it's all the fault of Wall Street, you can't sit idly by and do nothing," Clinton conceded. "But what you do is really important."
Previewing a Presidential Run
In words that would prove prophetic, Clinton argued that should she run for president in 2016 the contest "cannot be about personalities, participants sniping, all of the irrelevant stuff." She said the election needs to instead be about the "future."
Instead, the current general election match-up has devolved into one of the most personal, vicious contests in recent memories, which much of debate circulating around behavior she, her opponent, and her husband engaged in decades ago.
Clinton also anticipated that her "100 percent name recognition" would be a double-edged sword in 2016, and she'd likely be subjected to sustained attacks from the Republican party, which she referred to as "the dark side."