How emails will haunt Clinton's administration if she wins

Reaction from the 'Special Report' All-Star panel


This is a rush transcript from "Special Report with Bret Baier," August 30, 2016. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.


HILLARY CLINTON, DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: We turned over everything that was work related, every single thing. Personal stuff, we did not. I had no obligation to do so and did not.

All I can tell you is that I turned over every work-related e-mail in my possession.

What we turned over were more than 30,000 e-mails that I assumed were already in the government system, Bret, because they were sent to state.gov addresses.

BAIER: Sure, but there were some that were just recently discovered and turned over.

CLINTON: No, that was in the State Department not in me. I turned over everything.

My e-mails are so boring.


CLINTON: I'm embarrassed about that. They're so boring.


CLINTON: So we've already released, I don't know, 30,000 plus. So what's a few more?


BRET BAIER, ANCHOR: What's a few more? Well, there are many more, thousands more. And they are dealing -- excuse me -- they are dealing with things that are clearly not personal, including Benghazi and the Clinton foundation. And we are finding this out day after day. This, as The New York Times, usually a clear supporter of the Democrat candidate, especially in this case, writes this editorial from the editorial board about the ties to the Clinton Foundation: "When Mrs. Clinton became secretary of state, the Obama administration tried to draw a line between the foundation particularly, its foreign government sponsors and her role. The new e- mails underscore that this effort was, at best, partly successful. The Clinton Foundation has become a symbol of the Clinton's laudable ambitions but also of their tangled alliances and operational opacity. If Mrs. Clinton wins it could prove a target for her political adversaries. Achieving true distance from the foundation is not only necessary to ensure its effectiveness, it's an ethical imperative for Mrs. Clinton."

So with that, we'll bring in the panel: Jonah Goldberg, senior editor of National Review; A.B. Stoddard, associate editor at Real Clear Politics, and Sharyl Attkisson, anchor of Sinclair's 'Full Measure.'

Jonah, OK, so you listen to that tape and one after another, "I turned everything over."

JONAH GOLDBERG, NATIONAL REVIEW: If you go back and go to her initial press conference at the U.N., she had this granite facade of a cover story. And the facts that have come out since then have not only pounded it to rubble but ground it into a fine paste. There is literally not a single factual assertion she has made since back then that hasn't proven to be a demonstrable lie.

And the amazing thing, at some point you would think she would want to fire her lawyers because they are the ones who said that they've gone through with a fine-tooth comb. They've read every individual email. It turns out all of that wasn't true either.

The one thing they haven't been able to find are any e-mails about yoga. You would think if there were all these tens of thousands of e-mails that were deleted that were about yoga, some of those might have surfaced. But no. It's only the ones about Benghazi, the foundation, and all these things. If she wins, this will haunt her administration far worse than Whitewater ever did her husband's.

BAIER: And people overlook the fact that there was testimony here under oath to Congress in which she said some of these very things that have demonstrably proven to be false.

A.B. STODDARD, REAL CLEAR POLITICS: Right. Jonah is right, so many things she said a year ago. But even that day, that Benghazi testimony in the 11 hours last October, she said I remember that day. She said something, the State Department captured between 90 and 95 percent of her e-mails. And the State Department came out the next week and said they don't know where that number came from, that that wasn't true.

She has, obviously, brought this on herself. I think what she probably thought was legalese that would protect her were a bunch of lies that have all been proven wrong. Now it's not just another shoe drop, it's raining shoes. And Democrats are terrified about what is going to be coming out this week and the end of September in the days and weeks before the election.

BAIER: It seems like the Benghazi e-mails are especially egregious because they're so -- after all this investigation into Benghazi, to hear that there are at least 30, maybe more Benghazi e-mails.

SHARYL ATTKISSON, 'FULL MEASURE': I filed a Freedom of Information Act request for those in 2012, still haven't been filled. It's been, what, four years? Those should be coming to me, but they're not. So that's yet another example of violation of Freedom of Information law at the very least.

I also think that when she's talking about separating herself from the Clinton Foundation just to bridge over to there for just a moment, if The New York Times is right and there really are these troubled entanglements, how does separation now really solve that problem if she were to become president? The question is that's water under the bridge. She's already taken money through the foundation from domestic and foreign interests that she will be making decisions about if she's president of the United States. And I'm not sure how logical it is to say separation now would even solve that.

BAIER: Is it significant, Jonah, that The New York Times editorial board is out of this you have to break free of this thing because you're going to screw this whole thing up?

GOLDBERG: I think it is significant, and that's one of the things that made me think of Whitewater. People forget, New York Times sort of led on Whitewater in the early part of the first Clinton administration. This is the kind of issue that the New York Times is sort of genetically incapable of ignoring, this pay for play, behind-the-scenes access selling.

And I think what they're warning her is, look, you know, we think you're going to win but if you don't drop this, we're going to hound you to death on this. It's a sign of how everybody, every Democrat I talk to says they're just terrified of what more is going to come out because Hillary clearly seemed to think that these e-mails wouldn't be coming out.

BAIER: And Chelsea still staying at the head almost rubs it in some people's faces.

STODDARD: It was unbelievable. Democrats are on the record along with all these editorial boards across the country saying you absolutely have to shutter it or merge it into another foundation so the donations can be collected somewhere else, the work can be done somewhere else detached from the Clinton family at least for four, eight years. And then they announced right after that even though they're going to stop taking foreign and corporate donations when she's president, but Chelsea is going to stay and the Clinton Health Access Initiative, their biggest project, will still be taking foreign money.

ATTKISSON: There's a question of what a separation really would mean. You could say you're separated, but what does that mean? But I think they're counting on the public to have this tired, weary feeling, drip, drip about the e-mails and Clinton Foundation. Who is paying that close attention besides us and people watching this show? But I would say the vast majority of people aren't in that deep and they just hear it and they sort of tune it out. And I think they're counting on that.

BAIER: I want to turn quickly to the Trump campaign and the speech coming up tomorrow on immigration. Here is Jason Miller, spokesperson for Donald Trump.


JASON MILLER, TRUMP CAMPAIGN: What you've seen with Mr. Trump is he has been remarkably consistent in his pledge to end illegal immigration. We're going to build a wall, we're going to secure our borders and enforce our immigration laws. We're going to end sanctuary cities. We're going to pass e-verify. We're going to uphold the constitution. That's going to make a big difference in this country.


BAIER: I guess there's just a lot of people, Jonah, who have seen an evolution, and the Trump campaign itself says wait until the speech.

GOLDBERG: Yes. We should. Let's wait till the speech. Earlier this week, we've heard some trial balloons that it may not actually be a real wall. It may be a digital or virtual wall, which seems even more Jeb Bush like. Maybe the Mexicans will pay for this hologram. Who knows?

I think that the problem -- the gamble they're making is that the base isn't going to leave them for anything and he needs a lot more than his base. And this is essentially what my colleague calls a ricochet pander where he's trying to say nicer on things like immigration and minorities in order to attract essentially more college-educated whites, particularly college-educated women.

BAIER: Sharyl, Monmouth Pennsylvania poll out today, Clinton with 48 percent to 40 percent in the four-way race. Other state polls seem to be tightening a bit, some national polls tightening as well. But the trend is that Clinton has a bit of a lead but it may be softer than it once was after the convention.

ATTKISSON: And I agree with Jonah. Obviously, the Trump campaign is looking to see where it can pick up some new voters with appeal to minorities, with discussion maybe softening the immigration stance. And I agree with you when you said even if he softens on immigration, the people that want him to be tighter aren't going to go vote for Hillary Clinton. So the question is whether they lose their enthusiasm and don't come out and vote at all because that's where he stands to really surprise the projections and confound all the polls even if there's a huge turnout of nonvoters, and by that I mean people that haven't voted in a long time, normally don't vote but are so enthused that they might come out to vote, and that this wouldn't show up in the polls ahead of time. Will those people be discouraged?

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