Reid: Inspector General Report Shows Republican Attacks On Hillary Clinton Are Trumped-Up Baloney

“We have always known that Republicans’ obsession with Secretary Clinton’s emails is a trumped-up, partisan political crusade. Today we received a new revelation about just how bankrupt Republicans’ campaign against Secretary Clinton truly is.” 

“This is a watershed moment. We can now hold Republicans’ allegations up to the light and see them for the flimsy, transparent attempts to score political points that they have always been.”  

“If we were to believe Republicans, then we’d have to criminally charge Secretary Rice, Secretary Powell, their senior staff and everyone else who received these emails. We might have to indict the entire senior level of America’s national security community.”

Washington, D.C. – Nevada Senator Harry Reid spoke on the Senate about a State Department Inspector General memo showing that that emails received by former Secretaries Colin Powell and aides to Condolezza Rice may have contained classified information. Below are his remarks:

We have always known that Republicans’ obsession with Secretary Clinton’s emails is a trumped-up, partisan political crusade. Today we received a new revelation about just how bankrupt Republicans’ campaign against Secretary Clinton truly is.

The Inspector General of the State Department wrote an unclassified memo stating that emails received by former Secretaries Colin Powell and aides to Condolezza Rice may contain classified information.  This is the same trumped-up allegation for which Republicans are currently trying to railroad Secretary Clinton.

As Vice Chairman Feinstein said last week, “It has never made sense to me that Secretary Clinton can be held responsible for email exchanges that originated with someone else.” And yet Republicans would have you believe that these emails posed a grave threat.

Secretary Powell said it best. He said that upon reading such emails, “a normal, air-breathing mammal would look at them and say, ‘What’s the issue?” Just like they turned Benghazi into a political issue, Republicans are looking for anything that can be twisted into a partisan political tool.

In their pursuit of Secretary Clinton’s email records, Republicans have wasted millions of taxpayer dollars and abused the Congressional oversight process. They’ve held up scores of State Department nominees – from USAID workers in Africa to the State Department’s Legal Advisor – all in an effort to develop opposition research for the campaign trail.

But this is a watershed moment.

We can now hold Republicans’ allegations up to the light and see them for the flimsy, transparent attempts to score political points that they have always been. If we were to believe Republicans, then we’d have to criminally charge Secretary Rice, Secretary Powell, their senior staff and everyone else who received these emails. We might have to indict the entire senior level of America’s national security community.

Of course Secretary Powell should not be indicted. Of course Secretary Rice should not be indicted. But by Republicans’ logic, they should be. This is absurd.

It’s absurd because as the Inspector General makes very clear, these charges are a bunch of trumped-up baloney. It’s absurd because this campaign against Secretary Clinton has always been a ridiculously partisan, political waste of time and taxpayer dollars. Today, we see this more clearly than ever before.

As Secretary Powell said today, “a normal, air-breathing mammal would look at them and say, ‘What’s the issue?”