Hillary Clinton, in Atlanta on Tuesday October 15th to address the National Association of Convenience Store Owners, talked extensively about how the raid to kill Osama bin Laden was planned, and she said that if it had been up to Vice President Joe Biden, this raid would never have happened: that he was opposed to going through with it. This is according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution' s Greg Bluestein and Jim Galloway , who managed to interview attendees to this closed-to-the-press event.
Convention officials prohibited not only all journalists, but all types of cameras and recording devices; and so, the only sources concerning what she said there were attendees. More than 3,000 people attended, and one of the accounts of her presentation that were provided to Bluestein and Galloway came from a Georgia Republican state Representative who was invited to the conference because he happens to be the vice chairman of the Georgia House Regulated Industries Committee, the committee that regulates the sale of tobacco products, which are an especially important category of merchandise for convenience stores. Another major such category, of course, is gasoline, which is the main merchandise sold by convenience stores. Both categories of merchandise are associated with manufacturing industries that happen to be overwhelmingly Republican in their campaign contributions. Ms. Clinton was making a presentation here to a number of industries that can be considered to be hostile toward Democratic politicians. However, in a Democratic primary election there are often particular Democrats who succeed at fundraising from those industries in order to block the nomination of a Democrat who is seen by them as being even less supportive of their interests.
According to these attendees' accounts to Bluestein and Galloway, the former U.S. Secretary of State's speech was a "rah, rah, pro-entrepreneurship message," which was followed by an extensive question-and-answer session, in which Ms. Clinton eagerly and at length responded to inquiries from the audience about politics in Washington. At the same time as she is said to have maligned the judgment of V.P. Biden regarding the bin Laden raid, she praised the judgment of the Clintons' own long-time friend and supporter, the CIA Director at the time of the raid, Leon Panetta, whom she asserted to have been, along with herself, 100% supportive of the raid.
She is alleged to have praised Georgia's own former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, Newt Gingrich, as having always been willing to negotiate with her husband, President Bill Clinton, during the 1995-95 crisis that shut down the U.S. Government when her husband was President.
She also, according to the attendees, said that, whereas the males in Congress during the current debt-ceiling crisis have been unwilling to come together for the good of the nation to agree to re-open the Government, the women in Congress have worked hard to come to such an agreement, and to provide a bridge over which the men in Congress can ultimately come together. Ms. Clinton's political career has been very heavily financed by female donors, and the women's PAC Emily's List has been especially generous to her campaigns.
Regarding a matter of particular concern to convenience-store owners, Ms. Clinton said that she did not favor federal regulations of the foods that they sell to the public, but instead favored their own voluntary efforts rather than any such dictates from Washington, and she therefore encouraged these business-owners to choose to place before their consumers healthy foods, in preference to junk foods.
According to the printed Conference Schedule , Ms. Clinton's speech and Q&A occurred from 8:45 to 10:00 AM on Tuesday morning, the 15th.
Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They're Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010 , and of CHRIST'S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity .