"Washington Examiner" White House correspondent Bill Sammon reported to the October 8 edition of "Fox and Friends" that the Clinton campaign hired convicted document thief Sandy Berger. In questioning Sammon, guest co-host Greg Kelly asked if the story "has legs." Sammon responded noting the mainstream media’s double standard reputation.
"Greg, I think it's entirely up to the mainstream media. Let me give you an analogy. If one of the Republican campaigns had hired 'Scooter' Libby can you imagine the hue and cry? The guy would be run out of town on a rail. We will see how the mainstream media reports this. I have a feeling they won't work up quite as big a head of righteous indignation. "
Sammon gave a brief account of the event that lead to his fine and security clearance revocation. Berger held an advisory position on the Kerry campaign. Upon his guilty plea, the Kerry campaign fired him. Sammon also mentioned that Berger is forbidden from receiving secret national security information until September of 2008 and it would be illegal for anyone to share it with him.
Will the mainstream media report this? They have not as of yet. Besides "Fox and Friends" none of the other major morning shows ("Today," "Good Morning America," "The Early Show," and "American Morning") reported this development.
The entire transcript from "Fox and Friends" at 8:32 AM is below.
STEVE DOOCY: Meantime our breaking developing political story, Hillary Rodham Clinton's presidential campaign adding a controversial new advisor, none other than admitted secret document thief Sandy Berger. Breaking the story this morning, Bill Sammon, a senior White House correspondent for the "Washington Examiner." Bill, you've got to be kidding me.
BILL SAMMON: He's back! The guy who stuffed documents in his pants and in his socks, took them -- first of all, walked outside of the National Archives, hid them under a construction trailer after checking and looking in the windows of the Justice Department to make sure he wasn't being watched. Later picking up those documents, taking them home, cutting them up with scissors, lying to investigators and having his security clearance suspended, which it's still suspended near year. He is advising Hillary Rodham Clinton's campaign on foreign policy.
GREG KELLY: Bill, is he a paid advisor? And is this a formal position or just sort of an informal arrangement?
SAMMON: The best- according to my reporting it's, it's similar to the arrangement that Sandy Berger had with John Kerry in 2004 where he and Richard Holbrooke and a couple other former Bill Clinton foreign policy advisors were giving sort of daily advice to, to, to that presidential Democratic candidate. And remember, when the scandal broke, when it first was revealed that Berger had stolen highly classified terrorism documents and destroyed them, John Kerry fired him from his campaign. So it makes it all the more interesting Hillary Rodham Clinton has hired Sandy Berger.
GRETCHEN CARLSON: So Bill, Hillary Clinton must believe that Berger is such a valuable advisor, that she would risk the public relations potential disaster here.
SAMMON: Well, there are some who speculate that there, that there may even be an element of payback here. Because remember Sandy Berger was dispatched to the National Archives in advance of the 9/11 Commission hearings and some people believe that his mission there was to essentially scrub the historical record of Bill Clinton's performance against terrorism. So, you know, there are some who are speculating that because he did that, because some of these documents are now gone from the public record forever, that Hillary is rewarding her. It is hard to get inside her head and figure out what her motivation is, frankly.
DOOCY: Right. Bill, just, just looking at it on its face for people looking in and they hear oh Sandy Berger is going to be back, he's one of the cronies who got in trouble. Isn't that politically a bad idea to bring him out so, so early?
SAMMON: Well, it seems to be -- it would seem to connote all of the bad stuff from the Bill Clinton era, you know, the scandal, the old crew is back, the old team is back in action. And I don't know why she would do this when, when it does raise those questions. Again you've got Barack Obama, you know, out there portraying himself as the fresh face, the guy that's not sort of been corrupted by the system. And to have her coming forward and using Sandy Berger, the guy who, you know, was fined $50,000, he was placed on probation two years, and remember he lied. He lied to the public, he lied to investigators. He came out and said "well, this was sloppiness, I inadvertantly, you know, I accidentally grabbed a couple of documents and kept them."
CARLSON: But Bill, at some point let's say that Hillary Clinton becomes the Democratic nominee. She's going to have access to national security briefings and that's going to include some sensitive information much and, quite frankly, Sandy Berger is not allowed to see that information until the end of 2008 is my understanding. So how would that work?
SAMMON: Well, you just raised an excellent point, because it is illegal for him to receive classified information. His security clearance has been suspended through September of 2008, which should be the end of a three-year period and, you're right, she already, first of all, by virtue of her committee assignments has access to some classified materials. But as we get further along and she becomes the nominee she'll get regular CIA briefings from the White House. And that raises a very troubling point as to whether he will be even by osmosis receiving classified material from Hillary.
KELLY: Bill, real quick, do you think this story has legs? I mean, are people going to pick up on this and weigh in? Perhaps this won't be a permanent arrangement. Maybe it was made at a certain level and then, finally, people are going to say wait a second, we got a bif of a problem here.
SAMMON: Greg, I think it's entirely up to the mainstream media. Let me give you an analogy. If one of the Republican campaigns had hired "Scooter" Libby can you imagine the hugh and cry? The guy would be run out of town on a rail. We will see how the mainstream media reports this. I have a feeling they won't work up quite as big a head of righteous indignation.
DOOCY: With Sandy Berger back there's no news that Lewinsky's coming back too, is there?
SAMMON: [laughing] The old crew is back in town. I'm not sure it's going to go that far.