Some Democrats are putting a good face on former secretary of State Hillary Clinton's email controversy, but Dick Harpootlian, former chairman of the South Carolina Democratic Party, isn't one of them.
Harpootlian, appearing Thursday on CNN's "The Lead with Jake Tapper,"
said he wants to see other Democrats run against Clinton in the primaries because he fears Clinton, who currently appears headed toward coronation, won't win in the general election.
"I think one of the criticisms of Hillary Clinton is that she's secretive and that she plays by … her own set of rules rather than the rules the rest of us have to play by," Harpootlian said. "This typifies it. … [I]f she turns over thousands and thousands and thousands of emails, there is probably going to be a lawsuit about the emails she doesn't turn over."
Rep. Trey Gowdy's House Select Committee on Benghazi on Wednesday subpoenaed some of her emails and The Associated Press
said it is considering filing a lawsuit to get her emails as well.
"The question is, do we want to be dealing with this as everyone assumes her to be the presumptive nominee, or do we want a competitive primary where she has to answer those questions to other people in a debate on the stage?" Harpootlian said.
He criticized Clinton for avoiding talking about the subject until sending out a tweet at 11:30 p.m. Wednesday saying she wanted all her emails released to the public.
"Is that what we really want in a presidential candidate, and is that really what we want in a president?" Harpootlian said. "As a Democrat who wants to see a Democrat in the White House after next year's election, this is not good. It's not good for her, it's not good for the party and it's not good for the country."
Harpootlian admitted that the chances of any other Democrat beating Clinton look bleak now, but the same was true at this point in the 2008 campaign.
Harpootlian supported then-Sen. Barack Obama in 2008. This year, he likes Vice President Joe Biden.
Clinton won't lose the election for using a private email account instead of a government account, Harpootlian said, but added that the controversy over it is symptomatic of a larger problem with her.
"Just a few weeks ago we heard foreign nationals were contributing to the Clinton Foundation while she's secretary of state. Now we get the emails. What's the next shoe to drop?" he said.
"We saw John Podesta leave the White House, according to the Clinton folks, to come into the campaign to be the adult in the room. What does that say about the rest of the people in the room?" he said.
Though the outspoken Harpootlian would prefer another candidate, he still had advice for Clinton: She has to take control of her campaign, he said.
"I was around Bill Clinton in '92 with him in February '92 in New Hampshire; I was with Barack Obama here and in Virginia in '08. I tell you who ran those campaigns: Bill Clinton and Barack Obama," he said. "Who the hell's running this campaign?"
© 2021 Newsmax. All rights reserved.