‘I’m kind of far removed’: Clinton admits estrangement from middle class in Wall Street paid speech
These are just two excerpts from the numerous paid speeches Clinton gave to Wall Street giants behind closed doors between 2013 and 2015.
“I'm kind of far removed because the life I've lived and the economic, you know, fortunes that my husband and I now enjoy,” Clinton told members of Goldman-Black Rock in February 2014. “I am not taking a position on any policy, but I do think there is a growing sense of anxiety and even anger in the country over the feeling that the game is rigged.”
Her remarks would never have seen the light of day, but an email found among over 2,000 “Podesta emails” has now shone a spotlight on what Clinton was telling Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Deutsche Bank and others in between her job as Secretary of State and the current presidential campaign.
“Team, attached are the flags from HRC’s paid speeches we have from HWA. I put some highlights below. There is a lot of policy positions that we should give an extra scrub with policy,” Tony Carrk, the research director of the Clinton campaign, wrote in the email to John Podesta, the campaign chairman, and others on January 25, 2016.
“HWA” stands for Harry Walker Agency, which calls itself “an exclusive speakers bureau” that has been representing Hillary Clinton’s husband Bill “for over a decade.”
The agency also arranged Hillary Clinton’s speeches, which earned $675,000 from three events at Goldman Sachs and reportedly $3 million for speaking at banks and financial firms.
Carrk “flagged” some 25 excerpts that he titled, presumably highlighting the parts the campaign had to take care of: “CLINTON ADMITS SHE IS OUT OF TOUCH,” “CLINTON SAYS YOU NEED TO HAVE A PRIVATE AND PUBLIC POSITION ON POLICY,” and “CLINTON ADMITS NEEDING WALL STREET FUNDING” to name a few.
Clinton’s links to Wall Street is something that she and her team have been trying to downplay since the start of her presidential campaign in April 2015.
However, excerpts from her speeches, most of which she gave in front of Goldman Sachs people, show the scale of her “cozy relationships” with Wall Street.
“When I was a senator from New York, I represented and worked with so many talented principled people who made their living in finance,” Hillary Clinton said in a speech at Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd in San Diego in September 2014. “But even though I represented them and did all I could to make sure they continued to prosper, I called for closing the carried interest loophole and addressing skyrocketing CEO pay.”
Prior to that, in 2013, Clinton was telling Goldman Sachs that running for office has its downsides, such as for example “bias against people who have led successful and/or complicated lives.”
“You know, the divestment of assets, the stripping of all kinds of positions, the sale of stocks. It just becomes very onerous and unnecessary,” she said, adding that is “part of the problem with the political situation.”
In 2014 speeches, Hillary Clinton expressed her pro-Keystone pipeline views, the opinion she appeared to have changed just recently.
Clinton has been known to have to changed her mind on big issues in recent years. However, in 2013 she told a housing trade group that she has “a public and a private position.”
“If everybody’s watching, you know, all of the back room discussions and the deals, you know, then people get a little nervous, to say the least,” she said. “So, you need both a public and a private position.”
In her other speeches, which also surfaced from the recent WikiLeaks dump, Clinton discussed countries such as Saudi Arabia, which she said “exported more extreme ideology than any other place on earth” and Libya, where she said “they can’t provide security.”
She also spoke about the UK and the EU, predicting “some pretty unpredictable leaders and political parties coming to the forefront in a lot of countries.”
Clinton has long been under intense pressure to release transcripts of her paid speeches to corporations.
A poll released in June showed that nearly 60 percent of surveyed voters wanted transcripts of her speeches released.