Shorter Chris Matthews: Republican Critics Partly to Blame for Hillary Email Mess

March 4th, 2015 11:31 PM

MSNBC Hardball host Chris Matthews suggested on his Wednesday program that decades of Republican critics dogging Hillary Clinton may be partly to blame for her conducting all her State Department email correspondence on private email via a server located at her Chappaqua, New York, residence:

I always look at these stories and I say, well, there's got to be a backstory here.... Is it this supposition on the part of her critics and maybe standby critics, just people watching her over the years, that she is very private about her person. Not wrongdoing or something like that. She just doesn't like to be totally exposed in what she does everyday. It's her instinct based upon, perhaps, years of being attacked by the Right when she was down in Arkansas and since then. A built-in instinct for self-protection, a built-in instinct for privacy which this displays. I just wonder if that isn't coloring this story and the news interest in it, Ca

For her part, Washington Post reporter Carol Leonnig agreed that Matthews had "a great point about this" before observing that Clinton's email scandal is an unforced error which has breathed new life into the Benghazi controversy: 

It's funny, funny ironic that a Benghazi committee that was looking for some sort of dirt, some sort of smoking gun about how Hillary handled the attack on the consulate in Benghazi didn't really find anything that striking about the State Department's handling other than they knew that it was a terrorist attack long before they acknowledged it. 

But now the committee has found something that actually is quite worrisome: that the Secretary of State decided on her own power that she was going to behave in a way that other government employees would not have been allowed.