Harold Ford's Hillary Defense: Maybe Dishonest But Not 'Unpatriotic'

September 2nd, 2015 10:29 AM

How bad is it getting for Hillary when the best her defenders can come up with is Harold Ford Jr.'s formulation: okay, so the words most associated with her are "liar," "dishonest" and "untrustworthy" but, hey!—she's not "unpatriotic."

On today's Morning Joe, after Ford resorted on Hillary's behalf to the last refuge of scoundrels, Joe Scarborough hit him with a killer question: does Ford think David Petraeus—who was convicted of a crime for improperly passing classified material--is a patriot?  Ford had to acknowledge that he is, but when Harold tried to distinguish Hillary's actions from Petraeus', Scarborough swept in to challenge him to a Romneyesque $10,000 bet: "who do you think passed more classified material along, David Petraeus or Hillary?" 

Suggestion to Scarborough: I'm sure that like the rest of us with money in the market, Joe's feeling the hit from the current downturn.  Even so, guys who make a reported $99,000 per week should probably not publicly poormouth about not having $10,000.

HILLARY CLINTON [at March, 2015 press conference]:  I did not e-mail any classified material to anyone on my e-mail. There is no classified material. So I'm certainly well aware of the classification requirements and did not send classified material. 

. . . 

JOE SCARBOROUGH: If you believe that Hillary Clinton's only account did not receive and send classified information in high volumes, then you should not be allowed within five feet of a blender in a kitchen. 

 . . . 

HAROLD FORD, JR.: In fairness, they talked about confidential and classified. There's a difference between confidential and classified. And I still don't believe that any American, and even though people may associate those words with her, believe she did anything unpatriotic. Did she handle this clumsily? Yes, but is Hillary Clinton a patriot?  [inaudible]

JOE: Let me ask you. Do you think -- is that the standard? Is David Petraeus a patriot? No, I'm asking you. Is David Petraeus -- you brought up the patriotic standard. Is David Petraeus a patriot? 

FORD: I believe David Petraeus is a patriot. David Petraeus had a very sorry lack of -- exercise of judgement providing his, his biographer and his -- 

JOE: Who passed more classified information along: David Petraeus or Hillary Clinton? 

FORD: I don't --

JOE: Out of secured locations? I would be glad --

MIKA BRZEZINSKI: I wouldn't have this argument --

JOE" --to make that Mitt Romney $10,000 bet if I had $10,000, but I invested in the stock market so maybe I could [inaudible] a dime.