Thursday, March 17, 2016

Clinton aide wanted embattled Secret Service Director to read her words of support during prostitute scandal

An email released by the State Department in the last batch of Clinton emails shows that Hillary's aides wanted the Secret Service director to use her "supportive words" when he was in the hot spot facing Congressional hearings during a prostitution and security scandal. Two Clinton Foundation officials originated the chain of emails which were sent to Huma Abdein - at her private Clinton server address - after she applied for her Special Government Employee status so that she could work part-time at the State Department, the foundation, Hillary Clinton herself, and a consulting firm co-founded by the same person who emailed her.

Longtime Clinton aide, Huma Abedin - who serves as the vice chairwoman for Hillary's 2016 presidential campaign while reportedly under multiple government investigations surrounding the Clinton email scandal and alleged overpayments she received for vacation pay - applied for S.G.E. status in March of 2012. But it took a few months to process because she and her husband, former NY Rep. Anthony Weiner - who resigned after lying about being hacked and sexting multiple women - resisted turning in the required financial paperwork. She wasn't able to go part-time at the State Department and simultaneously work elsewhere until June of 2012.

The chain of emails began when Ilya Aspis, special assistant to former President Bill Clinton at the Clinton Foundation, copy-and-pasted a Newsmax article, on April 18, 2012, which reported, "Republican leaders – including Mitt Romney – have voiced support and confidence in Secret Service Director Mark Sullivan in the wake of the Colombia prostitution scandal that has rocked the agency he leads." Aspis, who also once served as the Deputy Director for the Executive Office of President Clinton, doesn't get a lot of attention from the media, and he was paid $38.32 by the Hillary for President campaign, according to a 2009 FEC filing.

Secret Service agents hired prostitutes while they were protecting President Barack in Cartagena, Columbia during the Summit of the Americas, and Sullivan was in the midst of Congressional hearings trying to determine if there were any security breaches. He ended up surviving that scandal, but after it was reported that one of the agents admitted to soliciting call-girls in El Salvador and Panama, Sullivan resigned on February 1, 2013, which was the same day Hillary Clinton and Huma Abedin left the State Department.

The article also quoted former Bill Clinton "body man" Doug Band, who helped launch the Clinton Foundation and co-founded the worldwide consulting agency Teneo. Band also sometimes consulted former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, but he wasn't paid for it, however, he did work on her transition team. Early the next morning, Band forwarded the email to Abedin at her address.

Within an hour, Abedin forwarded the email to former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Philippe Reines - another longtime Hillary Clinton aide - to his personal email address, which was redacted by the State Department. Last October, Gawker reported that Reines had lied about never using a "personal email account to conduct official State Department business." And these emails also contradict Reine's initial claims, after the private Clinton server story broke a little over a year ago.

"Sending along in the off chance hrc gets asked by press," Abedin wrote Reines, but there is a redaction beneath that short sentence. Ccing Hillary Clinton, Reines swiftly responded, "She actually got it from Wolf yesterday and gave a great answer about their professionalism protecting her family. I'll send you the excerpt as soon as we have and you can pass to Sullivan so he says her supportive words."

Reines was referring to CNN's Wolf Blitzer who called the prostitution scandal "shocking" during an interview with Clinton and Defense Secretary Leon Panetta at NATO headquarters in Brussels, Belgium, on April 18th. While Panetta admitted it was "disturbing" twice, Clinton seemed more perturbed that the story broke, then what had occurred.

The 2016 presidential candidate said that she didn't think there would be "so much diplomatic fallout as the unfortunate fact that it certainly ate up a lot of the coverage the summit, which was a meaningful get-together, only happens once every three years, an opportunity to showcase Colombia."

Immediately switching gears, Clinton used the moment to hype White House accomplishments and told Blitzer, "Think about how much Colombia has changed. And the United States, with our Plan Colombia support, has really been at the forefront of helping Colombia emerge as a real dynamo in the region."

Clinton never named Sullivan by name, and "her supportive words" didn't really address the scandal, at all.

"As Leon said, there’ll be investigations both in the military and the Secret Service," Clinton said. "I’ve had Secret Service protection for more than 20 years, and I’ve only seen the very best, the professionalism, the dedication of the men and women who have been around me and my family."

Unless Sullivan used Clinton's words in a Congressional hearing, a search on Google didn't turn up any instances where the embattled Secret Service director ever used them. It's also possible that Reines committed a typo, and he meant to write "sees", instead of "says."

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