An avalanche of ‘kvelling’ in latest Clinton email dump

December 1, 2015

The latest release of some 7,000 emails from Hillary Clinton’s private email server overflows with gushing congratulations and praise as the former secretary of state came to the end of her time in the Obama administration.

The culmination of the sucking-up: her performance in a January 2013 Senate hearing on Benghazi.

“Twitterverse abuzz with Hillary-kvelling!” emailed Strobe Talbott, president of the Brookings Institution and a friend of the Clintons.

The State Department is releasing Clinton’s emails from her four years as secretary of state in monthly batches. She had used a private email account for the messages, which has caused some stumbles for her campaign to be the Democratic candidate in the November 2016 presidential election. But many of the messages are mundane, like the pages and pages of congratulations after her testimony.

“Extremely well done – powerful, direct, and unabashed. Made me proud,” said David Huebner, then the U.S. ambassador to New Zealand.

“She was fantastic!!” Karen Finney, now a spokeswoman for Clinton’s presidential campaign. “Did those boys really think she wouldn’t come prepared?”

“I’m being flooded with emails about how you rocked. And you looked fabulous,” wrote Huma Abedin, her long-time aide.

“Our HRC was fierce yesterday. Brilliant!” said Tom Healy, then chairman of the Fulbright scholarship board, who also said he loved Clinton’s glasses and the “cashmere cape” worn by Cheryl Mills, who was visible in the camera shot during the hearing.

“She was incredible, so, what’s the right word? Presidential,” Healy said.

The lone voice of dissent: Mark Penn, her chief strategist during her failed campaign to become the Democratic nominee for the 2008 election.

“I don’t think the emotion in the hearing works to your advantage,” Penn wrote. “Looks more like they rattled you on something no one outside the crazy right blamed you for anyway.”

That assessment drew sniping from Clinton’s inner circle.

“Give Me A Break,” wrote Phillippe Reines, her senior adviser. “You did not look rattled. You looked real. There’s a difference,” Reines said.

Added Jake Sullivan, Clinton’s foreign policy adviser: “My problem with Mark’s analysis is that it repeats the same flawed assumption that underpinned his advice in 2008; namely, that being yourself is risky.”

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks at an event hosted by the Atlantic Council in Washington November 30, 2015. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

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