Here’s what Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton had to say about issues including Iran, her emails and Republican opponent Donald Trump during an interview with 9NEWS on Wednesday.
RITTIMAN: Thank you so much for your time, Madam Secretary.
CLINTON: Thank you, Brandon. Good to talk to you.
RITTIMAN: So I want to start with the news of the day, particularly on Iran. You’ve talked pretty tough on Iran. You’ve also taken credit for working with Obama on the dual pronged strategy to deal with that country. Today America learned there was a shipment of $400 million of foreign currency on a secret air cargo flight to that country. Did you know that was coming and do you approve of it?
CLINTON: Well, the White House has addressed this, and I think actually this is kind of old news. It was first reported about seven or eight months ago, as I recall. And, so far as I know, it had nothing to do with any kind of hostage swap or any other tit for tat. It was something that was intended to, as I am told, pay back Iran for contracts that were canceled when the Shah fell.
RITTIMAN: The case in front of The Hague.
CLINTON: That’s right.
RITTIMAN: That you were trying to settle. That being said, do you approve of it? That’s a lot of money to fork over to a country that you yourself say isn’t very trustworthy.
CLINTON: Well, look I think we know that the agreement has put a lid on Iran’s nuclear weapons program. I consider that to be a very positive step. We also know that our businesses want to now do business with Iran, and we’re tasking that very carefully. And we also know that there are outstanding legal challenges by the Iranian government against the United States government and other U.S. interests.
So, it’s all part of the same picture, but the most important thing we have, in my view, prevented Iran from racing to getting nuclear weapons, which is very much in America’s interest.
RITTIMAN: And yet Republicans will say no way no how do you fork over cash to that regime.
CLINTON: Well, that’s because they want to continue to criticize the agreement, and I think they are wrong about that. I have said the agreement has made the world safer, but it has to be enforced. And I’ve spoken out very strongly about how I will enforce this agreement. I will hold the Iranians to account for even the smallest violation, and that’s exactly what I think needs to happen.
RITTIMAN: I want to get into some Colorado territory. I already got the chance to ask you about marijuana last time, so you’re the only one who gets to dodge that question. But on fracking, I asked this to Donald Trump: We had a couple of cities that the voters approved either a ban or a moratorium on fracking in their city limits struck down by the state Supreme Court. Should they have the right to do it? Should the cities, if they vote that way, have a right to ban fracking?
CLINTON: Well, I have long been in favor of states and cities within states making up their own minds whether or not they want to permit fracking. I have been supportive of that.
I am not an expert on the Colorado constitution, and what I’m told is that the basis for the Colorado court’s decision was a Colorado constitutional one. So, I still support the right of local communities to make up their own minds about whether or not they want to permit fracking.
RITTIMAN: Would it surprise you to learn that Donald Trump told us that same thing? That he could see if the voters wanted it, that’s not necessarily the wrong thing.
CLINTON: Well, it would surprise me because he said something entirely different in North Dakota. So, I’ve taken a consistent position in support of states and local governments, and I think he’s been all over the map depending on who’s interviewing him and where he is.
RITTIMAN: Does it undercut the argument that you and the Democrats are making that Donald Trump ought to release his tax returns when he can point to right back to tens of thousands of emails that your legal team deleted because they declared them personal?
CLINTON: Oh, that’s such an apples and oranges comparison it’s hard to even talk about. Every presidential candidate for decades has released his tax returns, and I’ve released 33 years of my tax returns. The American people deserve to know about our taxes. And so Donald Trump is standing in the way of precedent that goes back on both sides of aisle Democrats and Republicans, and he clearly has something that he doesn’t want us to see.
I loved when Warren Buffet basically said, “I’ll bring my tax returns; you bring yours. I’ll meet you anytime anywhere.”
He owes the American people his tax returns.
RITTIMAN: What kind of stuff was in those emails that he keeps harping on?
CLINTON: It was all personal stuff, and we’ve said that consistently. And as the FBI said, everything that I’ve said publicly has been consistent and truthful with what I’ve told them. So, he can say whatever he wants, but the facts remain he owes the American people his tax returns, and we all are going to keep pushing him until he releases them.
RITTIMAN: Donald Trump likes to put the word crooked in front of your name. The other day he appeared to call you the devil at one of his events. If you could talk to Trump right now about how he’s speaking in this campaign, what do you say to him?
CLINTON: Well, first of all, I never respond to his personal insults about me. I could care less what he says about me. I’m going to respond when he calls a judge unqualified because of his Mexican heritage, or mocks a reporter with a disability, or says demeaning things about women. And the list goes on.
I hope America does not accept the kind of language that Trump is using to describe our fellow Americans. I find it deeply disturbing that someone wanting to be president of the United States would talk the way he talks, use the rhetoric, the demagoguery, the bigotry and the bluster and the bullying that he has demonstrated.
RITTIMAN: So, a person might get mixed messages by what your campaign’s doing in Colorado. We’ve seen you throttle back on TV ads here, and yet, here you are for a rally a few days after Donald Trump was here. How much are you going to have to compete for Colorado compared to other swing states?
CLINTON: Well, I’m going to fight very hard for Colorado. I care a lot about Colorado. I consider it a state that is helping to shape the future. I have a very high regard for your governor, who I think has been someone who understands the kinds of tough issues that states have to deal with and that I want to deal with as president. So, I’m going to keep coming back to Colorado.
We’re running a 50 state campaign. We have organizers across America. There are some states, like Colorado, that are going to get more attention than others, so you’ll be seeing me.
RITTIMAN: So, it’s funny you bring up Gov. Hickenlooper. I’m not necessarily one for the soap opera side of politics, but some people are. How close did he get to being your VP pick?
CLINTON: You know, I just really have a high regard for him professionally as well as personally. And I’m looking forward to working with him through the campaign and afterwards.
RITTIMAN: In terms of themes out of both conventions, Democrats seem to being telling a positive story about progress. Republicans seem to be telling more of a negative story. The country’s off on the wrong track. Now I’ve got to imagine that GOP story does resonate with some folks. They’ve been left behind in this recovery. How would you convince them that things are on the right track?
CLINTON: Well, I’m not satisfied with the way things are. I’m not somebody who is supporting the status quo that’s why I’ve laid out a number of very specific plans. We’re going to have the highest job creation program since WWII. We’re going to be building our infrastructure. We’re going to be investing in advanced manufacturing we’re going to be making in America. This scarf I have on was made right here in Denver. I also got a tie for my husband.
And Donald Trump says we don’t make things in America. He could make his ties, his suits, his shirts, his barware, his furniture somewhere in America. And people can go to HillaryClinton.com/makeithere and find out what I know, which is people are working hard in our country to make things. And I want to help them do it even more.
RITTIMAN: So, can I share with you something that I think scares a lot of Democrats. They look at Donald Trump, and they see him not obeying any of the traditional rules of a campaign, not behaving like a presidential candidate typically does. And I think the view of your candidacy is that you’re running at least more of a traditional campaign with the same kind of tone. Are you up to the task of taking on someone who says rulebook be darned?
CLINTON: Well, I guess I would somewhat disagree with that. I don’t think that we want to normalize the kind of behavior that we’ve seen from Trump in this election. I don’t think someone should try to bully and insult their way to the presidency. So, yes, am I putting forth plans? Am I trying to treat people with respect? Am I saying I want be the president for Democrats, Republicans and independents? That’s all true.
I am not going to engage in the kind of behavior that you see from Trump. And I think what more and more Americans are concluding is that this is not a man who is qualified to be president, and he is not fit to be commander and chief. The kinds of crazy statements he’s making, which talk about using nuclear weapons, talk about letting more people have nuclear weapons, talk about disrupting our strongest alliances, show a very weird affection for dictators. Those are not the kinds of behaviors that we from somebody in the oval office.
So, I am going to chart a steady course because I have a lot of great ideas about what we can do to build on the progress we have made, go even further. And I’m going to provide that contrast with someone who says one thing in Colorado, something else in North Dakota and insults people on a regular basis. I don’t think that’s what the American people at the end are going to vote for.
RITTIMAN: Secretary Clinton, thank you very much for you time.