Tom Brokaw: ‘Stunned’ by Clinton’s Answers on Her E-Mail Use

On Sunday’s Meet the Press, NBC’s Tom Brokaw strongly criticized Hillary Clinton’s performance during her interview with colleague Andrea Mitchell, specifically her answers to why she decided to use a private e-mail server while Secretary of State. 

Brokaw admitted that when Clinton said “I didn't think about the effect of e-mail, I was stunned. I mean, we were deep into the digital age at that point. She's Secretary of State.”  

When pressed by Chuck Todd over whether or not he believed Clinton’s answer, Brokaw maintained that she was “presumptuous” in her decision to use a private server: 

I believe she was presumptuous is what I believe. And I think that’s what a lot of people believe she's presumptuous about if I believe it it’s the right way of doing things. But where were the security people at the State Department saying, Madam Secretary, you have to have a secure server over here? 

You can have something off to the left, Colin Powell said that he did. But at this point to suggest that as Secretary of State, as much as she had been around, she didn't think about the impact and the possibility of hacking just astonishes me.

Later in the segment, conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt suggested Hillary’s answer to a question about the Syrian refugee crisis will be the next problem she has to deal with in her campaign: 

[T]he other bad news she has is this refugee crisis. She went out of her way to say I would have advocated for a more robust response when Assad began to kill his people. She’s trying to get ahead of her next problem which is 4 million Syrians are on the march, a million Libyans are on the march. 

See relevant transcript below. 

NBC’s Meet the Press

September 6, 2015

CHUCK TODD: Tom Brokaw, this -- you know, you like to say the unforeseen. Bernie Sanders is the definition of the unforeseen. 

TOM BROKAW: Well, my wife reminded me the other day when everybody was saying that Hillary was a lock six months ago. A lot of the women that we know were saying it's over, she's going to win the nomination, we’re going to finally have a woman as president. I always invoke, as you’ve heard me say too often, the UFO theory. Something to remember, however, is the caveat in all of this. Iowa is not a go to the polls and vote state. It's a caucus state, it has to be extremely organized.

A lot of people forget that George Bush, 41, beat Ronald Reagan in effectively what was his home state of Iowa, even though the polls would have shown it the other way. We are talking about a big universe here. We are also talking about Iowa. She's made some huge mistakes in my judgment. And that wonderful interview that Andrea initiated, and typically of Andrea she went right after the issue, when she said, I didn't think about the effect of e-mail, I was stunned. I mean, we were deep into the digital age at that point. She's Secretary of State. 

TODD: Do you believe her? 

BROKAW: Well, I don't -- 

TODD: Do you think that she just didn't think about it?

BROKAW: I believe she was presumptuous is what I believe. And I think that’s what a lot of people believe she's presumptuous about if I believe it it’s the right way of doing things. But where were the security people at the State Department saying, Madam Secretary, you have to have a secure server over here? You can have something off to the left, Colin Powell said that he did. But at this point to suggest that as Secretary of State, as much as she had been around, she didn't think about the impact and the possibility of hacking just astonishes me. And I think it takes away from her big argument, I've been there, I’ve done that, I know what I'm doing. 

TODD: Hugh, very very quickly here but there's a theory of the case that says, some Clinton people say, you know what, as bad as her poll numbers are, there's a bunch of Republicans that wish they had her bad poll numbers. 

HUGH HEWITT: That’s true. I will point out whenever your senior aide is invoking the Fifth Amendment, that's a bad week. And I’ll point out in the Andrea Mitchell interview, as you pointed out to me on my radio show on Friday Chuck, the other bad news she has is this refugee crisis. She went out of her way to say I would have advocated for a more robust response when Assad began to kill his people. She’s trying to get ahead of her next problem which is 4 million Syrians are on the march, a million Libyans are on the march. 

TODD: It’s the most important overlooked piece of Andrea's interview is what she said about Syria and trying to break from the president. 

NB Daily Campaigns & Elections 2016 Presidential NBC Meet the Press Chuck Todd Tom Brokaw Hugh Hewitt Hillary Clinton

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