Not much difference between Hillary Clinton and Richard Nixon

They didn’t have email in Richard Nixon’s day. And we don’t have much in the way of magnetic tape recordings these days. But otherwise Richard Nixon’s deletion of 18.5 minutes of incriminating recordings is no different to Hillary Clinton’s deletion of some 32,000 emails – self defined as being “private”.

To claim that over 50% of her email during this period when she was secretary of state was private is an insult to intelligence. “Of the 62,320 emails in her account, her office said 30,490 were deemed public business, while the remaining 31,830 were deemed private”. Really!

WashPo (16th June, 2014):

This week in 1972, a conversation took place which would lead to the most famous incident of evidence destruction by a presidential administration. ……. 

On November 17, 1973, the White House informed Federal District Judge John Sirica that the 18 1/2 minute Nixon-Haldeman conversation of June 20, 1972, had been erased. White House Counsel Fred Buzhardt told the Court that he no explanation for the erasure.

Nixon’s Secretary Rose Mary Woods took the blame for the first five minutes of the erasure. She said that she had been transcribing the tape, and when she reached to take a phone call, her foot hit a pedal on the recording machine, inadvertently causing the tape player to “record” over the original tape’s contents. Reporters were called to the White House to watch her perform a re-enactment, and the photos of her performing a tremendous stretch, which she supposedly held for five minutes, were rejected as implausible. Moreover, the particular tape recording machine does not operate the way she had claimed; simply pressing the foot pedal to “record” would not initiate a recording unless the play button was being manually depressed at the very same time.

Chief of Staff Alexander Haig blamed the 18 1/2 minute gap on a “sinister force.” In January 1974, experts who examined the tape reported that were four or five separate erasures. ……..

WashingtonTimes (10th March, 2015):

Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton deleted nearly 32,000 emails she deemed private from her time in the Obama administration and refused Tuesday to turn over her personal email server, insisting she “fully complied” with the law and that voters will have to trust her judgment.

Answering questions for the first time about her emails, Mrs. Clinton said she’s turned over to the State Department 55,000 pages of emails she deemed work-related, but said she got rid of the rest last year. She defended her decision to keep control of her emails by using a private account, saying previous secretaries did the same thing, and saying it was more “convenient” for her this way.

“I wanted to use just one device for both personal and work emails instead of two,” she said in a hastily called press conference after she spoke at the U.N. Conference on Women.

Hillary Clinton’s motives and morals in destroying incriminating evidence are not so different to Richard Nixon’s. There is only one reason for a public official (or even any employee in any company) to use private email rather than the organisation or company provided email. And that is to keep something secret from that organisation or company. Deletion of material is even more an explicit admission that the deleted material was incriminating. The “convenience” argument is childish – but I am surprised at how many in the US can be so “gullible” and take such an excuse seriously. I suppose the acolytes will believe whatever they want to believe no matter what the evidence says.

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