Now that Hillary Clinton isn’t running for president, she’s going to have to accept that the media won’t always cover her glowingly.
The former Secretary of State took to Facebook on Tuesday to comment on reports that she went against the recommendation of her campaign manager and refused to fire a staffer accused of sexual harassment.
During the 2008 election, Clinton shielded faith adviser Burns Strider after a fellow staffer accused him of inappropriate touching, unwanted kissing, and sending suggestive emails, campaign insiders revealed.
After the story broke, the two-time presidential candidate penned a Twitter response in which she failed to mention her role in the incident.
I called her today to tell her how proud I am of her and to make sure she knows what all women should: we deserve to be heard.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) January 27, 2018
Former campaign manager Patti Solis Doyle criticized Clinton’s statement, and said the Democrat ignored her recommendation to fire Strider and merely reassigned him, reduced his pay, and sent him to sexual harassment training.
The aide was later fired from a subsequent job for another set of sexual harassment allegations.
“I was disappointed by that tweet, that response,” Doyle told CNN’s Brianna Keilar. “It was the wrong call. I wish she had said it was the wrong call.”
In her Tuesday statement, Clinton said she had hoped Strider would change his ways if she kept him in the campaign.
“I did this because I didn’t think firing him was the best solution to the problem. He needed to be punished, change his behavior, and understand why his actions were wrong. The young woman needed to be able to thrive and feel safe. I thought both could happen without him losing his job. I believed the punishment was severe and the message to him unambiguous.”
She expressed regret over giving Strider a second chance that was “squandered.”
“I also believe in second chances. I’ve been given second chances and I have given them to others. I want to continue to believe in them. But sometimes they’re squandered. In this case, while there were no further complaints against him for the duration of the campaign, several years after working for me he was terminated from another job for inappropriate behavior.
That reoccurrence troubles me greatly, and it alone makes clear that the lesson I hoped he had learned while working for me went unheeded. Would he have done better – been better – if I had fired him? Would he have gotten that next job? There is no way I can go back 10 years and know the answers. But you can bet I’m asking myself these questions right now.”
Clinton then took aim at the New York Times, which broke the Burns Strider story.
“They recently opted to suspend and reinstate one of their journalists who exhibited similarly inappropriate behavior, rather than terminate him. A decade from now, that decision may not look as tough as it feels today. The norms around sexual harassment will likely have continued to change as swiftly and significantly in the years to come as they have over the years until now.”
Of her decision not to fire Strider, Clinton concluded: “If I had it to do again, I wouldn’t.”
President Trump has been a frequent critic of the New York Times, accusing the paper of biased reporting.
Now Clinton knows what it feels like to be on the receiving end of negative mainstream media coverage.
She is lying, she only cares about herself
— Jay Plowman (@JayPlowman) January 31, 2018
No Hillary don’t regret it she only regrets getting caught!
— kevin wroten (@kevinwroten) January 31, 2018
— John Stauber (@JohnStauber) January 31, 2018
If Hillary is to start with a list of regrets the list would be a mile long, what is astounding though is the fact that for somebody who has been in the public limelight for so many decades, nobody has figured out the real Hillary, which is what makes a person dangerous
— Vinu Abraham (@2VinuAbraham) January 31, 2018
— Adam & Stacie Henry (@henrywhite7) January 31, 2018
She regrets getting exposed!
— James Crawford (@JamesCrawford6) January 31, 2018
— Tom Koogler (@bulldogsrule80) January 31, 2018