Former President Barack Obama thought that Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's handling of the email scandal during the 2016 campaign amounted to "political malpractice," according to a new book.
In "Shattered: Inside Hillary Clinton's Doomed Campaign," authors Amie Parnes and Jonathan Allen also reveal comments made by Obama to Clinton when they were campaigning together, The Hill reported.
The scandal surrounding Clinton's emails became a major issue in the campaign, with Republicans accusing her of posing a national security risk because of her use of a private server when she served as Secretary of State under the Obama administration from 2009 to 2013.
While Obama had private concerns about how the Democratic candidate dealt with the issue, he did not speak about them publicly.
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"He couldn't understand what possessed Hillary to set up the private e-mail server and her handling of the scandal -- obfuscate, deny and evade -- amounted to political malpractice," wrote Parnes and Allen, according to The Hill.
The book also relates a conversation between Obama and Clinton as the pair traveled together on Air Force One to a campaign stop in July 2016. FBI Director James Comey had just cleared Clinton of any wrongdoing in relation to her emails, but she allegedly told Obama of her frustration that the media was focusing on this and not that the president was campaigning with her.
"It's a four-month sprint to the end, and it will go quickly," Obama reportedly said. "It's hard and it's tiring. But this is a different stage than the primary."
Former President Bill Clinton did not think his wife should apologize for her use of a private email server, advising her instead to explain why the issue was unimportant, Parnes and Allen add.
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In September 2015, Hillary Clinton did issue an apology on the matter.
"I do think I could have and should have done a better job answering questions earlier," she said in an ABC interview. "I really didn't perhaps appreciate the need to do that. What I had done was allowed, it was above board. But in retrospect, as I look back at it now, even though it was allowed, I should have used two accounts. One for personal, one for work-related emails. That was a mistake. I'm sorry about that. I take responsibility."
Bill Clinton compared his wife's election defeat to the outcome of the Brexit referendum, according to the authors.
Parnes and Allen also note that after telephoning Donald Trump to congratulate him on his victory, Hillary Clinton then called Obama.
"Mr. President, I'm sorry," she reportedly said, according to Axios.