A CNN reporter worked with a senior aide to Hillary Clinton to go after Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) over his tough questions for the then-secretary of state during a 2013 Benghazi hearing, a trove of new emails published by Gawker reveals.
Emails show that CNN global affairs correspondent Elise Labott collaborated with senior Clinton advisor Philippe Reines in an attempt to discredit the Kentucky senator during the Jan. 23 Senate testimony.
"Are you sure rand paul wasn't at any hearings," Labott emailed Reines, seemingly picking up a conversation that took place elsewhere.
Moments later, she published a tweet to her account.
"This is what I tweeted," she wrote back to Reines, seemingly seeking approval.
Sen Paul most critical on committee of Clinton, but a little late to the #Benghazi game.Not sure he was at many of the 30 previous briefings— Elise Labott (@Elise Labott) 1358957993.0
Later that afternoon, the two exchanged more emails.
"She was great. well done. I hope you are going to have a big drink tonite," Labott wrote Reines.
A reporter who Tweets on request! https://t.co/vdFGrYisgU— Phil Kerpen (@Phil Kerpen) 1448420655.0
Reines replied that he had "suggested a good Tweet" for her over BlackBerry's PIN-to-PIN messaging system.
"Done," Labott wrote back after publishing the tweet which appeared to reference an Accountability Review Board setup after Benghazi.
Clinton: I tried to be transparent. I could have joined the 18 ARBs, kept it classified and then said goodbye. That is not who I am.— Elise Labott (@Elise Labott) 1358978475.0
In an unrelated email from earlier that month, Reines also suggested a tweet for Labott.
"Nice doing business with you. You should Tweet something like 'Feb 1st looking like Hillary's last day' and link to the story," he wrote.
"That will drive your colleagues nuts," Reines added.
The Clinton aide then requested if she could "make it clear" in her story that "I didn't call you and have an exclusive conversation about her departure," but that the information had been "lifted from an interview to be featured" on CNN.
"Sure," Labott answered. "Thanks again."
Nice doing business with you. https://t.co/hVsYcN7UqH— Phil Kerpen (@Phil Kerpen) 1448422316.0
At another point in time, Labott wrote Reines that she had responded to "several emails from networks" that day with information "not entirely true" in what appeared to be her effort to protect the Clinton team over questions about the then-secretary's health.
"even though that's not entirely true." https://t.co/kNcTs2HMX1— Phil Kerpen (@Phil Kerpen) 1448419884.0
Labott is currently serving a two-week suspension for tweeting last week that the Statue of Liberty bowed its head “in anguish” after the House passed legislation strengthening the screening process for refugees fleeing war-torn Syria.
A representative for CNN did not immediately reply to a request for comment Tuesday night from TheBlaze and a spokesperson for Paul declined to speak on the matter.
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