Hillary Clinton

Tags ››› Hillary Clinton
  • VIDEO: Inside The RNC Conspiracy Theorist Rally That Explains The Trump Campaign

    Blog ››› ››› CARLOS MAZA & COLEMAN LOWNDES

    Two of Donald Trump’s favorite right-wing conspiracy theorists headlined a “Unity Rally” just outside of the Republican National Convention this week. The event further highlighted how Trump’s candidacy has helped bring fringe extremists  into mainstream Republican politics.

    On July 18, just blocks away from the site of the Republican National Convention, Trump supporters attended the “America First Unity Rally,” an event hosted by Citizens for Trump and longtime Trump adviser Roger Stone.

    The rally -- which was not an official Trump campaign event -- was billed as “a massive victory rally & parade celebration of Mr. Trump’s nomination.” In reality, the few hundred attendees were treated to an afternoon of conspiracy theories about the Clintons, 9/11, and the threat posed by anti-American “globalists.”

    Jones, Stone Represent Trump’s Fringe Supporters

    The event’s central headliners were Stone and Infowars.com founder Alex Jones -- two prominent Trump supporters with long histories of peddling bizarre conspiracy theories.

    Stone has claimed the Clintons and Bushes have secretly murdered dozens; the collapse of World Trade Center Building 7 is “suspicious”; President Lyndon Johnson killed President John F. Kennedy; President George H.W. Bush tried to assassinate President Ronald Reagan; and the Clintons killed John F. Kennedy Jr.

    Jones is a radio host well-known known for his own brand of conspiracy theories -- he claims the government was behind 9/11, the Oklahoma City bombing, mass shootings in Aurora, CO, and Newtown, CT, among other events. Jones claims these “false flag” operations are part of a broader plot by “globalists” in both parties to take away Americans’ guns and take over the country.

    Stone and Jones brought their unique brand of lunacy to the rally. Stone repeated the long-debunked claim that the Clinton’s were involved in a cover-up surrounding the death of White House aide Vince Foster, while Jones celebrated that American voters were finally waking up to the globalist agenda in American politics.

    Trump Is Helping Mainstream Conspiracy Theorists

    It’s tempting to dismiss events like the America First Unity Rally as merely a fringe element of Republican politics, but the Trump campaign has shown a real interest in relying on conspiracy theorists like Stone and Jones to appeal to far-right voters. Stone states he is still in frequent contact with the GOP nominee -- even claiming he was late to the rally because he was meeting with members of Trump’s staff. Trump has appeared on Jones’ show and praised his reputation, promising not to let him or his listeners down. Jones has returned the favor -- many of the attendees at the rally stated that Jones’ praise convinced them to support Trump as the GOP nominee.

    Trump’s willingness to mingle with the most extreme and unhinged factions of the far right helps normalize them, pulling them into the Republican mainstream. Stone has become a regular fixture in mainstream election coverage. The day after appearing at the rally, Stone appeared at a discussion hosted by Politico at the convention.

    It also impacts the way Trump views the world -- as The New York Times’ Jonathan Martin explained in May, Trump’s “whole frame of reference” revolves around the fringe conspiracies peddled by outlets like Jones’ Infowars. Trump has already shown a willingness to make anti-Clinton conspiracy theories -- including the Vince Foster allegations -- a part of his general election strategy.

    This closeness between the GOP nominee and the right’s most extreme conspiracy theorists deserves special attention over the next few months.

    Stone and Jones may have held their rally outside of the Republican National Convention, but Trump’s campaign is helping bring them closer and closer to the Republican mainstream.

  • New York Times’ Maureen Dowd Writes Yet Another Anti-Clinton Column

    Blog ››› ››› BRENNAN SUEN

    New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd continued her nearly 23-year long crusade against Hillary Clinton with a column accusing her of “compromis[ing] the president” and “willfully put[ting] herself above the rules.” 

    Dowd wrote a July 9 column, titled “The Clinton Contamination,” admonishing Clinton after FBI Director James Comey called her private email server “extremely careless” but recommended no charges for criminal conduct -- the Justice Department accepted those recommendations. In her column, Dowd called Clinton’s actions “arrogant” and “selfish” and said she “contaminated three of the purest brands in Washington -- Barack Obama, James Comey, and Loretta Lynch,” continuing that “Hillary’s goo got on Obama.” Dowd concluded that “the Clintons work hard but don’t play by the rules.” Dowd lamented that “the email scandal” had supposedly “clouded the futures” of some of the most trusted Clinton aides, and derisively referred to former President Bill Clinton as “the Arkansas devil.”

    A Media Matters analysis of Dowd’s columns found that 72 percent of her work between November 1993 and June 2014 included negative tropes against the Clintons, including regularly portraying Hillary Clinton as an unlikeable, power-hungry phony. In the year following, all 17 of Dowd’s columns with significant mentions of Clinton were negative. Dowd regularly relies on sexist tropes to describe Clinton, including that she is a “granny” who “can’t figure out how to campaign as a woman” and suggesting she “should have run as a man” during the 2016 election. Hypocritically, Dowd has also accused her of “cry[ing] sexism too often.” 

    Even Norman Ornstein, a scholar at the conservative American Enterprise Institute, mocked Dowd’s column, tweeting, “Congratulations! This is the 7,673rd time Maureen Dowd has written this column! What a gig!”

  • Chuck Todd Highlights FBI Director “Myth-Busting” Right Wing Media’s Fact-Free Clinton Email Myths

    Blog ››› ››› MEDIA MATTERS STAFF

    MSNBC’s Chuck Todd highlighted FBI Director James Comey’s testimony before Congress which debunked several right-wing media myths about Clinton’s email, including the accusation that Romanian hacker “Guccifer” breached Hillary Clinton’s email server.

    During the July 7 edition of MSNBC’s Meet the Press Daily, Todd reported on the House Committee on Oversight & Government Reform’s hearing with Director Comey. Todd highlighted Comey’s “myth-busting” of several theories about Clinton’s private server, including a part of Comey’s testimony that debunked right-wing media reports that Guccifer gained access to Clinton's server, stating that the hacker “admitted that was a lie.”

    On multiple occasions, Fox News’ Catherine Herridge and other right-wing media figures baselessly hyped Guccifer’s claim that he hacked Clinton's email server, despite the fact officials reported no evidence to support that claim.

    CHUCK TODD: It's possible his words on Tuesday, if left alone, would have made for a stronger condemnation of Clinton's judgment. Instead Republicans put a spotlight on a series of what turned out to have Comey myth-busting various theories surrounding her private server that may have not been overturned. 

    [...]

    Comey publicly shut down another myth that's been out there, the assertion from a hacker, who of course goes by the name of “Guccifer,” that he somehow gained access to Clinton's server while she was secretary of state. 

    [VIDEO IN]

    BLAKE FARENTHOLD: Can you confirm that Guccifer never gained access to her server?

    JAMES COMEY: He did not. He admitted that was a lie.

    [VIDEO OUT]

  • Five Times Comey Corrected Right-Wing Media Misinformation During His Congressional Testimony On Clinton Email Probe

    ››› ››› JULIE ALDERMAN

    During his July 7 testimony on Capitol Hill, FBI Director James Comey dismantled several right-wing media myths about Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server while she served as secretary of state. In his testimony about the FBI’s recommendation against pursuing criminal charges, Comey debunked flawed comparisons and corrected faulty definitions that right-wing media have repeatedly pushed.

  • Attorney General Announces Clinton Will Not Be Charged In Email Case, Deflating Months Of Right-Wing Media Smears

    Blog ››› ››› MEDIA MATTERS STAFF

    Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced that she will follow FBI Director James Comey’s recommendation not to charge Hillary Clinton in the investigation of her use of a private email server while secretary of state. Her decision lays to rest months of baseless speculation, smears, and attacks on Clinton.

    The Associated Press reported Lynch announced that the Department of Justice would not bring charges against Hillary Clinton for her use of private email servers while serving as secretary of state. The announcement followed FBI Director James Comey’s recommendation that no charges be made against Clinton:

    Lynch’s announcement dismantled right-wing media’s months-long crusade of overselling the certainty of Clinton’s indictment pushing  and conspiracy theories, while simultaneously ignoring legal experts and officials who found that Clinton did not violate federal law.

  • Right-Wing Media Run With Another Baseless Comparison With Clinton Emails

    ››› ››› JULIE ALDERMAN

    Media spuriously likened Hillary Clinton’s email use to the case of Bryan Nishimura -- who was criminally charged with mishandling classified information -- after FBI Director James Comey announced the bureau would not recommend criminal charges against Clinton. Media figures seized on Nishimura’s 2015 charges to erroneously characterize Comey’s announcement as a double standard, but, as with the debunked comparisons of Clinton’s email use to David Petraeus’ and John Deutch’s cases, legal experts note that unlike Clinton, Nishimura knowingly mishandled classified information.