If Bernie Sanders deserved credit for anything, it’s adding Hillary Clinton’s secret Wall Street speeches to the ever growing list of her scandals. More specifically, Bernie had brought attention to an entire beach home worth of speeches that Hillary had given to Goldman Sachs, totaling roughly $675,000 in payment for three speeches. That’s a figure greater than Bernie’s entire estimated net worth.
For as much as Hillary likes to accuse Trump of hiding something for refusing to release his tax returns, she’s refused to release the transcripts of her Wall Street speeches. After being hounded by Bernie over her refusal to do so at a number of the Democrat Primary debates, she eventually said it’s something she might do in the future – which ended up being code for “I’ll wait as long as possible and do nothing and hopefully everyone will forget about this.”
Thanks to Wikileaks, some of her speeches to the financial industry have made their way into the public eye. More prominently, one speech before a group of Brazilian bankers in which Hillary states that she understands the importance for politicians to have both a “public and private” opinion on an issue has captured the public’s attention. We all know about flip-flopping politicians, who are for an issue before they’re against it, but in Hillary’s case, she’s for and against every issue.
And what’s in the speeches we haven’t seen yet? According to an advisor of hers – it ain’t pretty. As Fox News reported: A veteran and trusted Hillary Clinton adviser ripped the Democratic presidential nominee after seeing transcripts of post-State Department speeches Clinton gave discussing Wall Street, Obamacare and Russian President Vladimir Putin, according to emails released by WikiLeaks.
Mandy Grunwald, an adviser to Clinton’s current White House bid, offered a particularly frank assessment on Jan. 23 after seeing the text of three speeches given to Goldman Sachs in 2013. “It’s pretty bad,” Grunwald wrote to a cadre of top Clinton aides. “She is critical to some extent of what led to the crash but the more memorable stuff is totally accommodationist.”
Grunwald cited Clinton saying the Dodd-Frank financial regulatory legislation was enacted because “people needed to do something for political reasons” and claiming “I’m not interested in pointing fingers.”
Grunwald has been in the Clinton orbit since 1992 when she was director of advertising for Bill Clinton’s presidential campaign. Grunwald remained a close adviser to Hillary after that election and later worked as head of campaign media relations on her failed 2008 presidential bid.
The email, uncovered in Monday’s WikiLeaks dump of emails hacked from Clinton Campaign Chairman John Podesta, came as Clinton was battling populist and uber-liberal challenger Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, a fierce critic of Wall Street. Grunwald may have also been especially sensitive to the language Clinton used since Grunwald worked on Elizabeth Warren’s successful Senate campaign in Massachusetts. Warren and Sanders arguably are the most vocal Wall Street critics on Capitol Hill.
Grunwald’s criticisms stretched beyond Clinton’s financial sector comments. “There are also some very tepid comments about Obamacare,” she wrote. “And a ton of foreign policy stuff, including some naïve sounding comments about Putin – that could cause a whole separate set of issues – but [aide] Jake [Sullivan] should review all that.”
Will the real Hillary Clinton please stand up?
I personally can’t stand the public Hillary Clinton – is the private one any better? I doubt it – but we’ll have to wait and see until we can read those speeches ourselves.
[Note: This post was authored by Matt Palumbo. Follow him on Twitter @MattPalumbo12]