After Hillary Clinton blamed WikiLeaks for being a cause of her unexpected 2016 presidential election loss to Donald Trump, WikiLeaks' founder, Julian Assange, said only she should take the blame.
"You can't blame WikiLeaks when what we leaked was your words and positions. Blame yourself," Assange tweeted.
Clinton has been making headlines again recently after a short time away from the limelight after the election. In an appearance at a Women for Women International event held in New York City, she elaborated on why she lost an election in which nearly every major poll showed her leading right before voters went to the polls.
"I was on the way to winning until the combination of Jim Comey’s letter on Oct. 28 and Russian WikiLeaks raised doubts in the minds of people who were inclined to vote for me, but got scared off,” Clinton said, referring to FBI Director James Comey's announcement that new emails related to the agency's investigation into her emails while serving as secretary of state were discovered.
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Although Clinton pointed fingers at Comey, WikiLeaks and the Russian government for her loss, she said she ultimately takes blame for losing to one of the least popular presidential candidates to win in American history.
"I was the candidate," she said, according to The Hill. "I was the person who was on the ballot and I am very aware of, you know, the challenges, the problems, the shortfalls that we had."
WikiLeaks has been criticized for releasing some internal Democratic National Committee communications and a slew of confidential documents from the U.S. government.
Comey himself singled out the organization during a Senate hearing, in which he argued the organization wasn't a legitimate news source: "It crosses a line when it moves from being about trying to educate a public, and instead just becomes about intelligence porn, frankly, just pushing out information," Comey said. "There’s nothing that even smells journalist about some of this content."
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In another tweet, Assange criticized Comey's "intelligence porn" comments and speculated that the Department of Justice will argue that publishing classified national security documents should be considered "obscene" and therefore able to be censored under the First Amendment.
In March, WikiLeaks released CIA documents that provided information on programs the spy agency uses to break into people's smartphones, computers and even internet-connected televisions, reported The New York Times.
One program, titled "Weeping Angel," allows the CIA to hack into Samsung smart TVs, record conversations in the room, and send the recordings back to the CIA on a covert server.