NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – The New York Times was pressuring Hillary Clinton late Friday to come clean and show voters the transcripts of the big-bucks speeches she gave to investment banking firms.
As CBS2 Political Reporter Marcia Kramer reported, the speeches that Clinton gave to Wall Street titans made her wealthy in her own right. But the campaign question of the day was what exactly she said to earn all the dough.
So far, her lips are sealed. Her Democratic primary rival, U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-Vermont) cannot get her to spill the beans and neither can reporters.
“Why is there one standard for me and not for everybody else?” Clinton said at a CNN town hall earlier this week.
But now, the New York Times has a rejoinder. In an editorial Friday, the paper blasted Clinton for saying that she won’t release the transcripts of the speeches she gave unless “everybody does it, and that includes the Republicans.”
The Times called it “a terrible answer.”
Clinton earned more than $3 million in speaking fees to banks and other financial firms since leaving the State Department, CBS News reported.
“Voters have every right to know what Mrs. Clinton told these groups. In July, her spokesman Nick Merrill said that though most speeches were private, the Clinton operation ‘always opened speeches when asked to.’ Transcripts of speeches that have been leaked have been pretty innocuous. By refusing to release them all, especially the bank speeches, Mrs. Clinton fuels speculation about why she’s stonewalling,” the Times editorial board wrote. “Her conditioning her releases on what the Republicans might or might not do is mystifying. Republicans make no bones about their commitment to Wall Street deregulation and tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans. Mrs. Clinton is laboring to convince struggling Americans that she will rein in big banks, despite taking their money.”
The editorial went on to say that Clinton is “damaging her credibility among Democrats who are begging her to show that she’d run an accountable and transparent White House.
You can read the entire editorial here.
Clinton said for her part that she will release her speeches when the other candidates – including the Republicans – release theirs.
Sanders, whose campaign is all about running against Wall Street, said he would be glad to release his own speeches.
“Way, way back, I got a few dollars. If I can find the transcripts, I’d be very, very happy to do it,” Sanders said. “But what Secretary Clinton said, ‘I will do it if other people do it,’ well, I am very happy to release all of my paid speeches to Wall Street.”
In 2014, Sanders made $1,867.42 for three speeches. He donated it to charity.
Pundits said Clinton should make her transcripts public and be done with it.
“(She should) take a new tactic with Bernie Sanders, which is to make fun of him,” said analyst Hank Sheinkopf. “If you’re not going to make fun of Bernie Sanders, don’t release the speeches.”
Sheinkopf had an idea in mind about how Clinton should “make fun” of Sanders.
“(She should say): ‘Bernie, are you serious? You’ve got nothing else to talk about?’” Sheinkopf said. “But instead, by not doing that, she’s making them more important than it really is.”
On the Republican side, U.S. Sens. Marco Rubio (R-Florida) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas) have not done any recent paid speeches. According to published reports, Republican frontrunner Donald Trump did seven paid speeches between 2014 and 2015 – speaking to shopping centers, real estate companies and other firms – but a Trump spokesman did not respond to Kramer’s question about whether Trump will release his transcripts.