For a second straight day, Wikileaks has done double duty on Hillary Clinton, as the internet group released a second batch of hacked emails to and from top Clinton aide John Podesta. The release – the 30th overall about Podesta’s emails – comes just four days before the elections.
Here’s what we’ve seen today:
1. Wikileaks is trying very hard to knock Clinton off. The Twitter timeline for Wikileaks almost looks like it could be for a conservative political website, as most of their tweets in recent days have been aimed at throwing some bad light on Clinton and her allies. Friday afternoon’s email release made it four different batches in less than 36 hours. Donald Trump used the latest release to tease his supporters during an afternoon rally in Wilmington, Ohio. “Let me run back on the plane and find out” what’s in there.
2. No big bombshells again on Friday. Yesterday, Wikileaks promised something big on Huma Abedin, the Department of Justice and the FBI – but there was nothing along those lines, just more of the same of what we have seen in the last month from the group. Today’s two releases have not generated as much activity – I could see that from the numbers showing fewer people reading my stories about the Wikileaks release. Others saw a conspiracy on the internet to deprive Julian Assange of attention:
3. More Clinton Team battles with David Brock. David Brock’s surrogate work on behalf of the Clintons has created some issues at times, as that was evident in this email from mid-January of 2016, when Brock was expected in news reports to be ready to demand that Bernie Sanders release his medical records. That was not received very well by the Clinton Campaign, as former Clinton legal adviser Lanny Davis laid into Brock, and forwarded his missive to Podesta. “For God’s sake David stop,” Davis wrote.
4. Clinton critics taking some liberties with emails. One thing I have noticed is critics of Hillary Clinton doing all they can to take emails out of context and claim they say something else in the daily Wikileaks releases – for example, this email with a subject line of “New Questions – post Jake.”
This email was immediately picked up and advertised as more evidence that Clinton was given debate questions early. But when you download the attachment – it’s a 12 page memo filled with talking points for Clinton for a February debate in Milwaukee.
5. Fighting back against “Clinton Cash.” As the book “Clinton Cash” was released to great fanfare in conservative circles in 2015, Team Clinton swung into action to fight back. Campaign spokesman Brian Fallon sent a memo to set out talking points on how best to push back, and defend the work of the Clinton Foundation. “It is sad, but not surprising, that their philanthropic work has become the subject of false, right-wing attacks,” Fallon wrote. The subject line reads: “What We Already Know About ‘Clinton Cash’: Book and Author Attacking Hillary Clinton Widely Discredited.”
Will we see two releases on both Saturday and Sunday? Stay tuned.