In a podcast last week, Hillary Clinton said an unidentified female 2020 Democratic presidential candidate is being groomed by Republicans to challenge the eventual Democratic nominee and help President Trump, with support from "a bunch" of Russian "sites and bots." Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) assumed (correctly) that Clinton was referring to her, and she really poured on the umbrage.
To prove Clinton wrong, Gabbard went on Sean Hannity's Fox News show Thursday night — she and Hannity both touted mistaken initial reporting that Clinton had claimed Russia, not Republicans, were "grooming" her for a third-party run — and blamed Clinton (a former senator and secretary of state) for the last 18 years of U.S. wars, then echoed Republican complaints about the "transparency" of the House impeachment inquiry. "I don't know what's going on in those closed doors, we in Congress don't have access to the information that is being shared," said Gabbard, who isn't among the 59 Democrats and 48 Republicans who do have access.
Gabbard did dodge some of Hannity's questions on Hunter Biden and Russian election interference, apparently getting Hannity to endorse paper ballots in national elections.
After Hannity aired, Gabbard tweeted that she's "fully committed to my offer to serve you, the people of Hawaii & America, as your president & commander-in-chief. So I will not be seeking re-election to Congress in 2020." Since she's polling at 1.3 percent in the Democratic primary race, according to the RealClearPolitics average, that almost certainly means she's at least temporarily retiring from politics after she's passed over for the Democratic nomination — or that she will, you know, run for president on a third-party ticket. Peter Weber