Hillary Clinton called “fair” the Des Moines Register’s criticism that she needs to accept responsibility for her mistakes — but then refused to label her e-mail scandal an “error in judgment.”
In response to a question from Chris Cuomo in tonight’s Democratic presidential forum, Clinton maintained that “nothing I did was wrong, it was not in any way prohibited.”
Here’s the full exchange:
CUOMO: On that issue, the Des Moines Register gave you an endorsement. They did question your judgment when it came to the e-mail issue, and you know this, but for the audience in 2008, ‘When she says, when she makes a mistake, she should just say so.’ This weekend they said, ‘that’s a lesson that you have not learned.’ Yes, you apologized, but only when you needed to. Not when you first could have. Fair criticism?
CLINTON: Well, I think that, you know, look, I was delighted to get the Register’s endorsement. And it was a very generous one. And yes, I think that’s a fair criticism. You know, I, I had, I had no intention of doing anything other than having a convenient way of communicating and it turned out not to be so convenient. So again, we’ve answered every question and we will continue to do so. But you know, maybe being faster, trying to scramble around to find out what all of this means, I probably should have done that quicker.
CUOMO: You’re willing to say it was an error in judgment, should have apologize —
CLINTON: No, I’m not saying it was an error in judgment. Because nothing I did was wrong. It was not in any way prohibited —
CUOMO: Not apologizing sooner —
CLINTON: Well apologizing sooner. As soon as you can, but part of the problem, and I would just say this as not an excuse, but as an explanation, when you’re facing something like that, you’ve got to get the facts. And it takes time to get the facts. So when I said, hey, take all my e-mails, make them public, that had never been done before, ever, by anybody. And so we’ve been sorting our way through this because it is kind of a unique situation, I’m happy people are looking at the e-mails. Some of them are frankly a little, a little embarrassing. You know, you find out that sometimes I’m not the best on technology and things like that, but look, I think it’s great. Let people sort them through and as we have seen, there is a lot of, you know, a lot of interest, but it’s something that took time to get done.