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Fox Asks - Are There Hidden Skeletons In Senator Clinton's Closet?

Reported by Donna - February 19, 2007 -

Today on Fox News Live with John Scott there was a segment on Hillary Clinton. Of course the banners didn't tell a postive story, that would be against the rules for Fox News. Keep in mind that during the segment this banner was up most of the time, 'Are There Hidden Skeletons In Senator Clinton's Closet?'

The guests were conservative journalist Byron York from the National Review and Rick Klein from the Boston Globe.

John Scott: Well, saying I'm sorry just doesn't seem to be Hillary Clinton's style. At least not when it comes to her vote back in 2002 giving President Bush the authorization to go to war in Iraq. Listen here to the Senator speaking over the weekend in New Hampshire.

Video clip of Senator Clinton: If the most important thing to any of you is choosing someone who did not cast that vote or who has said it was a mistake then there are others to choose from. So to me the most important thing now is trying to end this war.

John Scott: So, the question are there other issues in the Senators past that could come back to haunt her on the campaign trail? Let's ask Byron York, White House correspondant for the National Review and Rick Klein, Congressional correspondant for the Boston Globe. Welcome to both of you. Byron, interesting there, she just sort of seem to take the charge that Senator Edwards has been throwing at her and mayhe Barack Obama has been throwing at her. She accepted that, she said, 'Ok, I'm not going to apologize for my vote, let's move forward from here. Is that going to work?'

Byron York: You know, this is classic Hillary Clinton. I believe she used a formulation kind of like that back in 1992 beginning with the whole Jennifer Flowers scandal. I think she said something like 'You know if you're the kind of person that is bothered by this kind of thing, then heck, don't vote for us.' (Comment: And what exactly was Hillary running for in 1992, Mr. York?) And the implication is that if you're bothered by this there could be something wrong with you if you feel like you can't vote for Mrs. Clinton. (Comment: That's Senator Clinton) I do think that depending on how things go in Iraq (Comment: And Iraq would be her fault, why?) that she can get points for consistency by the time she gets to a general election, if she does get to a general election. And she can say, look, I've been at the same place on this war.

JS: But Rick, in that statement, did she just give a bunch of votes to Obama or Edwards?

Rick Klein: Well certainly the Democratic primary voters are a lot more anti war than the general election voters. And for a lot of folks who hear statements like that they say, well ok, that disqualifies me from your camp. She is making a consistency argument, but I do think it gives a lot of political ammunition to folks like Senator Edwards, Senator Obama, who are urging Senator Clinton to take a stronger stand against the war. I mean Senator Edwards is going around saying silence is betrayal on this war, we have to end this thing now.

JS: But, what's the political calculation Rick, that she's making here? If she says I'm sorry I voted for the war, does she figure that that loses her more votes than the kind of statement she just made?

RK: I think it fits with an overall theme that looks more at the general election than the primary. At this point Senator Clinton and her aides are trying to portray her candidacy, her nomination as fairly inevitable, that it's just a matter of time before the other opponents fall away and she's the Democratic nominee and I think the calculation is looking more at the general election than the primary. In terms of the primary it's about consistency about strength, but I really feel like this is a general election strategy.

JS: Yeah, I wonder about that Byron is this calculated to appeal to sort of the mainstream voter down the road? I mean is Senator Clinton looking at it and figuring that an Obama in the campaign for instance takes away some support from the more liberal wing of the Democratic Party?

BY: Well, part of it is that and part of it is that the liberal wing of the Democratic Party is they are very loud and very passionate about the war but they're not big enough to get a president elected. (Comment: But they were big enough to get the Senate and House to change hands?) You know there is one other thing here which is the woman factor and I think that she may believe that flip flopping on the war might be more damaging to a woman candidate than it would be to a man. Because most of her career in the Senate has been spent trying to establish tough credentials on National Security. She went on the Armed Services Committee almost immediately I believe in an effort to show that she could be tough on Naitonal Security. It's especially important for her not to be seen as flip flopping in this war.

Comments: Most of the segment had the banner, 'Are There Hidden Skeletons In Senator Clinton's Closet?' The thing was, except for York bringing up the Jennifer Flowers issue, which isn't even in Senator Clinton's closet, there was no talk on this issue, just a blaring banner. They also had the banner, 2006:Clinton Voted For Widhdrawal From Iraq, up to possibly show that she is a flip flopper, where in the interview they said the exact opposite.