Tags: Steve Malzberg Show | John Sununu | Hillary Clinton | email scandal | Dianne Feinstein

John Sununu: Feinstein Signals Dems' 'Panic' over Hillary Emails

By    |   Monday, 09 March 2015 03:18 PM

Sen. Dianne Feinstein's plea to Hillary Clinton to come clean about her use of a personal email address for government business shows Democrats are in a "panic," says John Sununu, former governor of New Hampshire and chief of staff to President George H.W. Bush.

"The key message is Dianne Feinstein's. She is reflecting the panic in the Democratic Party at how badly the Clinton campaign is handling this," Sununu said Monday on "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.

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"And if they can't handle this now, the Democrats feel she's not going to be able to handle a serious presidential campaign. This is a big problem. It is not going to go away, it has legs.

"It affects virtually every other critical issue that people have to criticize Mrs. Clinton on, and it really enhances, if you will, the whole attack package that will be used in a campaign."

Last week, The New York Times revealed Clinton, the presumed Democrat candidate for the 2016 presidential race, used private email to conduct government business when she was secretary of state.

Her spokesman defended the practice and told The Times she has been complying with the "letter and spirit of the rules."

The uproar over the apparent breach of government rules has not let up.

On Sunday, Feinstein, a California Democrat said on NBC's "Meet the Press" that Clinton should "step up and come out" to explain her actions.

"What I would like is for her to come forward and say just what the situation is, because she is the preeminent political figure right now…" Feinstein said. "I think from this point on the silence is going to hurt her."

Sununu said Clinton's release of tens of thousands of page of emails is not enough.

"[When] people start as their principle line of defense bragging about sending you 55,000 pages of email, then you know when they focus on that number, there must be many thousands more that they haven't sent you and that's the issue here. Not the emails that they have sent," Sununu said.

"By the way, they sent those all in paper so that they're not searchable in the format that they have now. If they were being forthcoming, they would have sent electronic versions so people can look at them.

"So they continue to play games and what Dianne Feinstein and the Democrats are really afraid of is that this is defining her as a game-playing candidate."

Sununu believes Clinton has other issues to answer for, such as donations the Clinton Foundation accepted from countries who treat women poorly — especially in light of her campaign for women's rights.

"What is astounding to me is that Mrs. Clinton is generally pretty smart politically and she should have known certainly knew, that she was going to run for president. Why did she allow the system that she was a significant part of to do these silly things?" Sununu said.

"I'm more astounded at them not having hidden all these problems better than I am that the problems have come out.

"I don't know how she's going to square things because she's going to be answering issues related to the Foundation and to the emails between now and until she loses on election night in November 2016."

Asked about the wide and politically-diverse range of Republican candidates mulling a run for the White House, Sununu said:

"It's a strong and deep and broad and smart field. It's going to be a hard process in going through a selection. You're going to start seeing announcements in late spring, April, May," he said.

"I don't think people will wait until the summer. I don't think they should wait until the summer, because the summer dies and so a July announcement is as late as a September announcement effectively.

"They're all coming to New Hampshire so you know they're beginning to get serious. They're all stopping by for coffee so you know some of them are really serious and this is going to be a very interesting campaign."

Sununu — the "Live Free or Die" state's governor from 1983-1989, and White House Chief of Staff from 1989-1991 — said he prefers a governor or former governor to be the GOP pick.

"The size of the problem that Obama's going to leave the country needs the experience of the executive office that would come from a candidate who had been a governor or a former governor," he said.

Sununu wasn't impressed by President Barack Obama's response to the Clinton email controversy. Obama says he learned of it through news reports.

"This president thinks he's playing cute when he uses an answer like that. But now we know what that answer really means," Sununu said.

"It means, 'I am detached, I don't pay attention to anything important to the country. I don't pay attention to items of significance that the White House should be paying attention to. And if it ain't golf and if it ain't politics and if it ain't fundraising, I'm not looking.'

"That's what that means when he says, 'I read it in the news.' "

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Sen. Dianne Feinstein's plea to Hillary Clinton to come clean about her use of a personal email address for government business shows Democrats are in a "panic," says John Sununu, former governor of New Hampshire and chief of staff to President George H.W. Bush.
John Sununu, Hillary Clinton, email scandal, Dianne Feinstein
Monday, 09 March 2015 03:18 PM
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