Failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton blamed FBI Director James Comey and the website WikiLeaks, which published emails hacked from her campaign director, for her loss in the 2016 presidential election.
Speaking at an event Tuesday with CNN reporter Christiane Amanpour, Clinton said she “was on the way to winning” before WikiLeaks began releasing emails stolen from campaign manager John Podesta and Comey told Congress he was reviewing additional emails related to Clinton's use of a private server.
Clinton takes 'personal responsibility'
“A combination of Jim Comey's letter on October 28th and Russian Wikileaks raised doubts in the minds of people who were inclined to vote for me but got scared off,” she said. “And the evidence for that intervening event is, I think, compelling and persuasive.”
Clinton said widespread misogyny among the American electorate also aided in her defeat.
“Yes, I do think it played a role,” Clinton said. “ … It is real, it is very much a part of the landscape, political and socially and economically.”
After saying Comey, WikiLeaks and sexism were among the reasons for her losing the election, she said she took “personal responsibility” for the loss and acknowledged that she did not run a “perfect campaign.”
“I take absolute personal responsibility. I was the candidate. I was the person on the ballot,” she said.
Book by Clinton due in fall
Clinton said she would offer more details and analysis of her electoral defeat in a book she is publishing this fall.
An election analysis released this week by a group of top Democratic Party strategists suggests the main reason Clinton lost is because a large number of voters who backed President Barack Obama in 2012 voted for Donald Trump, the eventual winner, in 2016.
Matt Canter, a senior vice president of the Democratic political firm Global Strategy Group, told the McClatchy publishing group that, in his organization's analysis, Clinton's failure to attract the number of voters Obama did in 2012 accounted for about 70 percent of why she lost.
“We have to make sure we learn the right lesson from 2016, that we don't just draw the lesson that makes us feel good at night, makes us sleep well at night,” Canter said.
According to McClatchy, Canter's conclusion “is shared broadly by other Democrats who have examined the data, including senior members of Clinton's campaign and officials at the Democratic data and analytics firm Catalist.”