Commentary

There’s Classified, and then There’s Classified

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The Hillary Clinton email scandal has dominated the news cycle for months. Aside from Donald Trump, the scandal is probably one of the most talked about issues in this political cycle. The fact Hillary Clinton unilaterally—and arrogantly—decided to use one phone for personal and classified material damages her already-crippled credibility. And going beyond that, what she did was downright illegal.

Yet somehow, leading Democrats are attempting to brush it under the table as if it were simply another common blunder. Recently, this list of “leading Democrats” now includes President Obama. The Hill, an online political news outlet, recently wrote a thought-provoking article titled “Obama’s ‘Classified’ Comments Strike Nerve.

It focuses on the comment made by President Obama regarding Hillary Clinton’s mishandling of classified information, blithely dismissing her blunder/crime by declaring “There’s classified, and then there’s classified.” The article compares the different reactions and different viewpoints from across the political spectrum, from Edward Snowden to high ranking officials such as White House press secretary Josh Earnest and former FBI agents.

The article is thought provoking for a few reasons. First off, the piece is called “Obama’s ‘Classified’ Comments Strike Nerve.” There is some accuracy there. Yes, President Obama struck a nerve. His statement was not only wrong and completely unnecessary, it seemed to signal the administration’s willingness to sweep this crime under the rug.

No, classified United States intelligence is not “loosely” that has been classified. There’s some information the United States government will release once “declassified,” but that’s not what the President was referring to.  The article even quotes Edward Snowden’s ironic tweet “If only I had known.” It’s a little embarrassing when the top government whistle blower calls the President out.

With the unapologetic defense of Hillary Clinton’s illegal actions and shattered credibility, it seems clear President Obama is willing to do whatever necessary to protect the Democratic candidate. If he distances himself too much from the “Clinton Machine,” then that legitimizes everyone’s favorite socialist Bernie Sanders. And the idea of an extremist outsider in the White House must frighten many establishment Democrats.

Perhaps the most accurate statement in this entire sad affair was provided by Bradley Moss, a lawyer who specializes in matters related to classified information. “For a lower rank-and-file person, that’s not a defense you can ever use,” he said. To me, that sentence is the biggest takeaway. If this crime were to be committed by someone not as high profile as Hillary Clinton, then that person would be stripped of their job, their clearance, and their title. But this “Hillary can do no wrong” mentality is dominating the minds of liberals.

Obama claims to have the most “transparent” administration, yet this transparent administration faces more problems than ever with leaked information and espionage. He’s encouraging the American people support another untrustworthy and incapable candidate.

The fact remains that the investigation is ongoing. If there wasn’t anything to be suspicious of, the Obama-led Justice Department would not be still looking into it. Doesn’t it also bother the American public that Mrs. Clinton not only abused classified information, but has been completely arrogant and all around uncooperative with the investigation?

One thing’s for sure: President’s Obama’s careless remarks and his thoughtlessness toward national security struck a nerve with me. I hope our President soon realizes he’s advocating for a criminal to be the next leader of the Free World.

About Lauren Stimpert

Lauren is a senior at Bates College. She currently serves as the Vice President of the Bates College Republicans as well as the Secretary for the Maine Federation of College Republicans. She is a New Hampshire native and self-identified political junkie.

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