CNN New Day host Chris Cuomo grilled Hillary Clinton surrogate Joel Benenson Monday about the State Department Inspector General’s report that heavily criticized Clinton’s use of the private email server, and her trustworthiness problem with voters:
Cuomo: With Trump, temperament is becoming an issue,” Cuomo said. “With Clinton, trust has always been the issue, from A to Z. Doesn’t matter who we’re talking to, and it’s as true now as it was at the beginning. The IG report cemented that for people. The spin out of your side, or the arguments out of your side is that IG report said no law was broken. It said a lot of things, like she never asked permission, nobody ever did this with this server, that she shouldn’t have deleted the emails. And all of those go to trust. How do you combat that image?
Benenson: Well look, you address those questions, which she has repeatedly and some of the things you just said are absolutely correct.
Cuomo then jumped in to say that all, not some, of the things he said were correct, before letting Benenson continue.
Benenson: The I.G., the State Department has to clarify and modernize the communications about what rules exist. Secretary Kerry is the first Secretary of State to have a state dot gov email address. But what’s going to go on here is there are going to be positives and negatives that each candidate is going to speak about themselves and about each other. What’s going to happen here is that there’s going to be a campaign of issues and ideas, because that’s what voters care about.
In Clinton world, voters don’t care about her email shenanigans or her honesty and trustworthiness, despite what the polls say. Surrogates like Benenson are trying hard to shift the discussion away from these issues to that of the economy and jobs.
Yet that is a huge risk for Clinton as well, since she has aligned herself with Obamanomics, which is faltering badly. That’s what last Friday’s jobs report indicated, just as voters are focusing on pocketbook issues.