On Monday’s Hugh Hewitt radio show, CNN’s “The Lead” anchor Jake Tapper said that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton “definitely” should be questioned about her involvement in the exchange of five terrorists from Guantanamo Bay for U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl.
He said that “there’s very little that should be off the table” considering Clinton’s status as former secretary of state and a prospective presidential candidate, and that asking Clinton about the prisoner exchange was “definitely fair.” Tapper predicted that Clinton would face a line of questioning about her involvement in the swap during her numerous schedule television interviews during the tour.
Partial transcript as follows:
HEWITT: Last question. Former Secretary of State Clinton will be out on the book circuit fairly soon.TAPPER: Yeah.
HEWITT: I don’t know if she’s booked for “The Lead,” yet. Is she booked for “The Lead,” yet?
TAPPER: She is not. No, I don’t think I’m going to be getting an interview with her.
HEWITT: Well, she’s sitting down with Bret Baier and Greta Van Susteren, so I think she’ll get a fair shake from “The Lead,” too. I just wondered, do you think it would be a legitimate question to ask her about this deal, because she obviously had to have been involved in iterations one and two of this, right?
TAPPER: Yeah, definitely. First of all, I think there’s very little that should be off the table when interviewing a former secretary of State who by all accounts wants to be president of the United States, even if she hasn’t acknowledged or admitted or announced such a decision, or made such a decision. But certainly, I think that asking about this deal and the concerns people have about it, and the message it sends, is definitely fair. I’m sure she will be asked about it. A lot of excellent people interviewing here, I think Diane Sawyer, Robin Roberts, Cynthia McFadden, Christiane Amanpour, Bret Baier, Greta Van Susteren, I’m sure, a lot of tough reporters there. I’m sure she’ll get a lot of tough questions.
HEWITT: And then one of the very inside baseball things I’ve heard is that Qatar is becoming increasingly alienated from its fellow Gulf states, that it’s become more and more Islamist, less and less sort of within the ambit or the orbit of the Kingdom. Have you picked that up in reporting this story, that Qatar is not our friend in the way that it used to be our friend?
TAPPER: No, I have not. If anything, I’ve heard the opposite, that the UAE and Qatar are, whatever they are, they’re among the better Arab countries when it comes to U.S. diplomacy. I have not heard that.
HEWITT: That’s interesting. That’s 180 degrees different from a report I got that the Saudis are just deeply, deeply concerned over the course that Qatar has taken under the new whatever emir or whatever.
TAPPER: Well, good tip. Let me ask around about that. I had not heard that.
Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett