Well, this is embarrassing for everyone involved: House Democrats trying to pre-empt a Benghazi-committee report critical of the Obama administration accidentally released a deposition transcript in which controversial Hillary Clinton adviser Sidney Blumenthal says he makes $200,000 a year from what seems like a part-time job as an informal adviser to fellow Clinton ally David Brock’s advocacy organizations.
“Democrats released but redacted a transcript of Clinton confidant Sidney Blumenthal answering the committee’s questions,” the L.A. Times reports. “But the redaction marks are easily erased by anyone able to use a computer’s cut-and-paste function.” In the transcript, Blumenthal says he is paid approximately $200,000 a year as a “consultant” for Brock’s Media Matters, American Bridge, and Correct the Record groups, all of which are well-connected to the Democratic Party establishment and are major supporters of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.
Blumenthal says he gives Brock “ideas and advice” about these groups but does not appear to have any involvement with them on a day-to-day level. The only articles I could find online about Blumenthal’s involvement with Media Matters merely involved him forwarding their work to other people, and he doesn’t appear to be a member of the group’s board of directors or executive staff. Nor is he listed anywhere as having an official position with American Bridge or Correct the Record.
Specifically, this is:
- Embarrassing for House Democrats because they screwed up a process that can be successfully completed with a single black marker.
- Embarrassing for House Republicans because it shows them sidetracking an investigation that was ostensibly about Benghazi to ask one of Hillary Clinton’s friends a bunch of questions that have nothing to do with Benghazi. (Embarrassing the GOP in this manner was the ostensible purpose of the House Dems’ botched release.)
- Embarrassing for Sidney Blumenthal because now everyone knows how much he gets paid for doing a “job” that seems to consist solely of occasional networking and log-rolling.
- Embarrassing for everyone who has a real full-time job at Media Matters, American Bridge, or Correct the Record and makes significantly less than $200,000 a year.
It’s been previously reported that Blumenthal also made $10,000 a month for several years as an employee of the Clinton Foundation, during which time Politico says, “some officials at the charity questioned his value and grumbled that his hiring was a favor from the Clintons.”