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Special Report

All-Star Panel: Clinton clarifies comment on job creation

This is a rush transcript from "Special Report," October 27, 2014. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: Don't let anybody tell you that it's corporations and businesses that create jobs. You know that old theory trickledown economics.

(BOOS)

CLINTON: That has been tried. That has failed.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRET BAIER, ANCHOR: Don't let anybody tell you that corporations and businesses create jobs. There was a clarification from Hillary Clinton today at a campaign event, trying to get the tape, but here's the quote. "So-called trickledown economics has failed. I shorthanded this point the other day.  So let me be absolutely clear about what I have been saying for a couple of decades. Our economy grows when businesses and entrepreneurs create good paying jobs here in an America where workers and families are empowered to build from the bottom up and the middle out, not when we hand out tax breaks for corporation that outsource jobs or stash their profits overseas."

We're back with the panel. Jason, I think when any politician says let me be absolutely clear, you know that there is something that has not been absolutely clear and clearly was a mistake. For a few days there was a defense about this statement, saying this is exactly what she meant to say and it's old news.

JASON RILEY, WALL STREET JOURNAL: This was a clumsy attempt to critique supply side economics, which this country is no danger of returning to under President Obama.  Why she's even -- what we need a critique of Keynesian economics. That's what we've been experiencing, government spending as a stimulus. How is that going for us?  The slowest recovery in a generation or two? That's what I would like to hear her defense of.

BAIER: Chuck?

LANE: I thought NBC created a job for Chelsea so there is at least one corporation that has created a job. This is now a couple of gaffes.

BAIER: We don't actually have an actual rim shot in studio.

(LAUGHTER)

CHARLES LANE, OPINION WRITER, WASHINGTON POST: I'll wait for Twitter to pass judgment. But, she has made quite a few gaffes now since this unofficial presidential campaign has gotten underway. And this one is going to have legs because you can put it into a little sound bite. You can turn it into an ad for the opposition and you can repeat it over and over and over again. And it's obviously not a sensible comment because she herself had to walk it back. I would just note, look who she is with. She is campaigning with Martha Coakley.

BAIER: Who is in trouble.

LANE: Who is in big trouble in Massachusetts. And I'm not sure this is the statement from her surrogate campaigner that is going to lift her out of that.

BAIER: I don't know if she was trying to make a correlation since she was in Massachusetts to Romney's corporations are people. I wasn't sure what -- how it happened, but it looked like it was part of the remarks, Charles. I mean, part of the planned thing that she was going to say.

CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: Well, sort of the guru of this kind of argument is Elizabeth Warren, who is very articulate in saying that the government is instrumental, society is instrumental in creating success and jobs and a successful economy, and not so much entrepreneurs or individuals. She is the best. Remember there was an attempt at recapitulating, this Obama made in '08 when he said if you built it, if you have success, it's not you.  He botched it.

Now she got it worse. Hers was like a D on a scale of D to A. She was trying to take a stab at this idea that government, that it's not sort of individual capitalism and corporations, evil corporations, but it had no elaboration and it is going to haunt her. I think, Chuck, despite the fact that he wasn't able to rise above the ad hominem, Chuck had it exactly right, it will be shown over and over again. But it does show you how much Democrats overestimate her skill as a politician.

BAIER: So you think this is more detrimental than "You didn't build that"?

KRAUTHAMMER: It will be played again and again. It's a signal to Democrats. I mean, if you can't make the elementary liberal argument about the role of government without having this ridiculous statement that jobs are not created by corporations, then you are not going to be a good candidate, as she showed in 2008. She is a person who said in the White House we were dead broke. We had trouble paying the mortgages on our houses. If you are going to plead poverty, you don't refer to your homes in the plural. That's pretty elementary. She is not getting the elementary stuff.

BAIER: I want to quickly turn to this IRS story, which blew people away, Jason, when you go down exactly what happened to this woman. A number of different people have testimonials, the IRS is saying they are changing their policy. What do you think about this story?

RILEY: I think it's another example of the IRS thinking that the rules don't apply to them. And you can easily see why the Lois Lerner scandal could happen with this sort of ethos in place. If officials at the IRS were told to target conservative groups they wouldn't think twice about doing it. I applaud the New York Times for doing its job and reporting government abuse the way it did. It looks like the IRS is going to change its policy as a result. But where have they been? It makes you wonder if they had covered the Lois Lerner scandal as vigorously -- or covered at all, we should say -- it might have done some good in the end.

BAIER: That is it for the panel, but stay tuned for a top headline from last week you may have missed.

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