Accuracy in Media

When recently asked what she was most proud of from her time as Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton replied that the office was like a “relay race.” “When you run the best race you can run, you hand off the baton,” she said. Mrs. Clinton was unable to cite any specific achievement, though she did make the rather dubious claim that “I think we really restored American leadership in the best sense.”

Even some of her most ardent admirers couldn’t figure out a good answer to the question about her greatest achievement, during a discussion on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” As Ed Morrissey of Hot Air noted, Bill Kristol of The Weekly Standard raised the question of what accomplishments make Hillary the most qualified Democrat to be the next president. John Heilemann said he would wait for her next book to come out to help inform him how to answer that question, while Chuck Todd rambled on about Secretary Clinton’s reticence to get publicly involved in controversial issues, and playing a quieter role, thus preventing her from being able to claim any great achievements.

But the legacy of Hillary Clinton is turning out to be one of incompetence, bungled efforts, chicanery and outright scandal. Her most famous words have become, “What difference at this point does it make?” referring to how the four brave Americans died in Benghazi in September of 2012. And a number of other scandals have followed her, both from before and during her tenure as Secretary of State. The latest is about $6 billion in contract dollars that the State Department lost track of over the last six years.”

According to the Inspector General report:

  •   There was a lack of paperwork: of 115 contracts sampled from the U.S. Mission in Iraq, 33 could not be produced.
  •   There was missing documentation: the Bureau of African Affairs couldn’t provide complete files for any of the eight contracts requested.
  •   There were conflicts of interest: a $52 million contract was awarded to a “company owned by the spouse of a contractor employee performing as a Contract Specialist for the contract.”
  •   Payments were sent when they weren’t supposed to be: $792,782 was sent to a contractor “even though the contract file did not contain documents to support the payment.”
  •   Contracts were even hidden: “The related contract file was not properly maintained and for a period of time was hidden…This contract was valued at $100 million.”

All in all, this creates “conditions conducive to fraud, as corrupt individuals may attempt to conceal evidence of illicit behavior by omitting key documents from the contract file,” according to the IG report.

“One of the reasons our loose money-no-object, budgets-optional approach to debt-fueled government is so dangerous is that it lets high-rolling bureaucrats get lax with the paperwork,” writes John Hayward for Human Events. “The sort of $6 billion error that would annihilate pretty much any private company barely rates media coverage.

The Washington Post covered this scandal, as they do many Washington, D.C. developments. “[Inspector General Steve] Linick took over the job in late September, after it had been vacant for nearly six years,” they note. What a coincidence that the potential for fraud escalated in the same time frame. And remarkably, but not surprisingly, the Post article never once mentioned the name Clinton, though this largely took place on her watch.

But don’t look to the mainstream media for this story to make headlines or appear on the prime time shows. As a presidential hopeful for the Democrats, Hillary Clinton is the media’s current darling, and needs to be shielded from stories like this.

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