Sep 22, 2018, 1:07 AM ET

Hillary Clinton asks what happened to Republican Party: 'Why are they so intimidated?'

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Hillary Clinton called out the Republican Party for backing down to President Donald Trump, asking "Why are they so intimidated?"

Clinton spoke to "The Late Show" host Stephen Colbert in a wide-ranging interview Friday, tackling everything from special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation to the Brett Kavanaugh nomination and whether Trump should be impeached.

But she summed up her appearance with a challenge to members of the GOP.

"I do not understand what happened to the Republican Party," Clinton said. "I served with a lot of these people, why are they so intimidated? At some point you've gotta put country before party."

PHOTO: Hillary Clinton appears on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert on Friday, Sept. 21, 2018.CBS
Hillary Clinton appears on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert" on Friday, Sept. 21, 2018.

The former secretary of state and Trump's opponent in the 2016 presidential election -- Colbert reeled off her accomplishments, including "winner of the popular vote" -- stuck to her talking points early in the interview, which was pegged to the paperback release of her book, "What Happened."

Clinton struck a nonpartisan tone, saying it was the country in general that is in a time of political upheaval, and not just Trump is to blame.

"I want people to take it seriously, regardless of who you voted for," she said. "I want them to think about why our democracy is in chaos."

Clinton also criticized Republicans over their treatment of Dr. Christine Blasey Ford's allegation of sexual assault against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. She called for an FBI investigation, as requested by Ford, before testifying to the Senate Judiciary Committee. She called it a "fair request" and said it "wouldn't take that long."

She also also elicited a cheer from the audience when she said she had "no sympathy" for Republican senators dealing with the issue of when Ford will testify, if at all.

"No, I have no sympathy," Clinton answered.

"They've done everything they can to try to ignore it [Ford's allegations], to try to undermine it. ... We owe it to our constituents, to our Constitution, to do it right," she said. "They're the ones who turned it into a political football."

Clinton did deflect talk of impeaching Trump, saying, "There is a constitutional crisis that doesn't have to be looked at only through impeachment."

She encouraged voters to get out to vote in the midterms and make winning Congress a referendum on the president.

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  • eldwdubu

    The real question is what happened to the Democratic Party? When Democrats were proud, unapologetic Liberals and Progressives over the last 100 years Democrats dominated the Senate 66 years, the House 65 years, Senate and House 57 years, the White House 52 years!

    Democratic Party leaders are human and have been seduced with big donor money and become Republican Lite and became the servants of Wall Street, the rich and powerful and the Corporate establishment and as a result Democrats have lost the House and the Senate, lost the Supreme Court, lost against Trump, lost 69 of 99 states houses, lost over a 1000 - 1200 political seats over the last 8 years, 33 states have Republican governors. Corporate Democrats serve corporate oligarchy just like Republicans.

    Too many ordinary and decent people feel demoralized and stopped voting because neither major party represents rank and file, ordinary US citizens.
    People, you must get out and VOTE, especially in primaries and show up in general elections it is the only way we are going to see real change, when turnout is great in the long run ALL of us win and when politicians fail don't be discourage vote them out in primaries, use your vote and take control of your state and local politics and vote in progressives that will stand up against a very small class of super wealthy people that think they should rule in the shadows and the world should only revolve around them by using the influence of big money and perks to get their way. OUR VOTE IS MORE POWERFUL.

  • Digman

    The party is not intimidated just cautious they know how corrupt things are. Example the Clintons should be under investigation along with many others on capitol hill. This country was left in shambles by Obama and Trump is not the answer. Trump is correct on a few things the swamp needs to be drained and immigration needs to be controlled. The future for the children is bleak unless it gets fixed now

  • Bill Toone

    Ya know how some people are "popular" and others are not?
    It isn't really fair. But Hillary was never as popular as Bill. Or Obama.
    It isn't fair. There is an element of sexism. But she isn't helping Democrats anymore.

  • notagain

    Sometimes I wish she'd shut up and go away. If others hadn't been overlooked so she could try to be first woman president, we wouldn't be in this mess.

  • Leo Marvin

    Boy she is like a sore that never heals.

  • Prophet With Honor

    Oppose Trump and his loyal 30% will sit out your reelection.

  • davcon

    William Saffire, NY Times writer put is succinctly. Hillary Clinton is a pathological liar.
    Was Kathleen Willy a consensual relationship?, Juanita Broderick, Paula Jones. I have no interest in the screech's of this over the hill bag lady in a pantsuit.

  • wd65

    My guess is that the Russians also have embarrassing recordings of top Republicans in the Senate and House. Why else would they allow Trump to degraded the US on the world stage from the leader of the free world to a pariah?

  • Tomas Vallidulur

    She is a piece of work. Her Hypocrisy is stunning. What about these women all you insane left wingers?

    Bill Clinton-12 women on record telling their stories of him sex-ually assa-ulting them starting back in college!
    Imagine all the women who still have never told their stories about him?
    Eileen Wellstone (1969)
    Allegation: S-exual assault
    Anonymous female student at Yale University (1972)
    Anonymous female student at the University of Arkansas (1974)
    Anonymous female lawyer (1977)
    Juanita Broaddrick (1978)
    R-ape
    Carolyn Moffet (1979)
    Elizabeth Ward (1983)
    Sally Perdue (1983)
    Paula Jones (1991)
    Sandra Allen James (1991)
    Christy Zercher (1992)
    Kathleen Willey (1993)
    Monica Lewinsky. 22 year old intern working for the President.

  • Prophet With Honor

    If you are a Republican member of Congress could you afford to lose 30% of your votes? What is wrong with them is self preservation.

  • Fatesrider

    For the record, and a very true fact: Conservative ideology is predicated on fear. Look at everything they do and you can see it's tied to some kind of fear. Even their anti-abortion stand is predicated on the fear of women (If it was "pro-life", none of them would carry guns and all of them would be against the death penalty).

    The REASON this happens has been found since about 2010, and it has to do with how the brain physiologically reacts to thinking. The act of thinking specific thoughts (like a political ideology, a religion, etc) impacts the brains in the regions of it that have to do with those thoughts. For liberals, it's in the social/emotional centers in the cortex that favor thinking about the needs of others (which explains why their ideology is what it is). For conservatives, that thinking impacts the fight/flight centers of the brain, creating the reptilian fear response centers in the more primitive parts of the brain.

    At this point, conservatives are saying this is "Fake news".

    No, actually, it isn't. fMRI studies can readily differentiate the political ideology of a person if, simply from the way the brain's physiology has changed. It shows "enhancements" in those centers that contain more neural pathways than average. Those enhancements help facilitate the rationalizations necessary to maintain the thinking. It's likely an evolved response to our living in tribes, because different tribes had different ways of doing things (eve to speaking) and the brain adapted to that paradigm, being able to "rewire" itself to conform to the social customs and thinking.

    This is also why cognitive therapy often doesn't work. Cognitive therapy, in large part, focuses on what a person is thinking, and changing those thoughts. Generally, the subject is taught to recognize "bad thinking" and substitute in "good thinking", which is relative, but usually much more healthy than the "bad thinking". But doing this is very hard, and it takes willpower - the desire to do it.

    In social groups, people who want to belong to a group usually adopt the thinking of that group. That's where the willpower comes from - a desire to belong to that group. Changing the thinking all by itself is much more difficult if the group around them doesn't conform to the changed thinking, but is much easier if it does.

    The bottom line is that it's the thinking that changes the brain in everyone. For conservatives, that change happens in the primitive fight/flight response centers. They fear everything, and the response is often violent, or denial. This thinking is why those who don't look or act like they do are discriminated against - because they are feared.

    So when it comes to intimidation, it's a fear response, predicated by events around an individual, usually resulting in some kind of fight/flight behavior. It's as reliably provoked in a conservative as it would be in anyone terrified of something. Only in the case of conservatives, they are afraid of everything, so it's easy to terrify them and get them provoked into fighting (violence) or fleeing (being very quiet because they think anything they do will "hurt" them).

    To walk this back a bit, this applies a lot more to extremist thinking than simply being a bit conservative. Those in the center don't generally have any conditioned responses predicated on their ideologies (extremist liberals do, which is why they're tagged with "bleeding hearts"). So it's not a black and white thing across the political aisle. It's shades of gray for the most part. But the GOP itself has become much more "black" as their thinking becomes more extremist.

    Whether or not you personally believe this will decide on whether or not you look it up. If you don't concede that this is a possibility, then you won't look it up. (This is the "fight/flight" response - denial or fleeing.) If you even remotely think that it's a possibility, you likely will look it up (if you haven't already) because your ideology isn't as dogmatic nor fear-based.

    The brain is a fascinating organ, and thinking will cloud the perceptions of people. Just because the enhancements are in one area doesn't mean the whole brain isn't impacted by that, after all. This is why conservatives PERCEIVE threats, when none exist. The fight/flight centers filter everything based on threat levels since that thinking dominates the brain, impacting how they actually perceive reality.

    It can get to the point were the thinking in an ideology can produce clinical delusion or even psychosis. To be fair, any extremist ideology will do that, not just conservative. This is often thought to be the reason why some religious fanatics see angels and such that no one else sees, or why they speak in tongues - if they're not faking it, they induce a kind of seizure in the speech centers. Liberals who put animal life over that of humans are also displaying aberrant and psychotic behaviors.

    This doesn't absolve anyone of the responsibility for their behaviors. It just explains why they do it. It's, literally, all in their heads, due to the thinking that predominates their brains. It's a physiological response to that thinking, and everyone does it (the thinking that is, since the physiological responses vary based on the kind of thinking they do).

    Fun facts on a September Saturday.

  • Southern CT

    When did she get out of rehab?

  • jackson chapman

    Why can't this woman go away? She LOST! Twice! Talk about Trump's narcissism. Mrs. Clinton: PLEASE go away. You and your husband now have hundreds of millions of dollars from "speaking fees". Go take exotic vacations. But go away.

  • Karolyn Lapka

    She's correct. These Republicans are ALL afraid of trump. COUNTRY BEFORE PARTY.

  • Gary Burns

    Trump is the worst president I have seen in MY 51 years.

  • mollydtt

    This is why the GOP will never bring impeachment proceedings against Trump. They are afraid, and value party over country.

    Trump was correct. He could stand on 5th Ave and shoot someone but his support would be even stronger.

    Nixon was impeached for far less. This current GOP has no shame.

  • SomeTruthOutThere
    "I want people to take it seriously, regardless of who you voted for,"
    she said. "I want them to think about why our democracy is in chaos."

    It's disappointing how many politicians still refer to our country as a democracy. The United States is a Constitutional Republic.

  • Rodney Bayburn

    You may not like Hillary, but I think everyone can acknowledge that she would have been better than the current orange clown act playing at being president.

  • KTM250 TPI

    I am women hear me roar. My my success in life is ridding the coat tails of my successful husband.

  • james

    Hilary, they are not intimidated, they are complicit. Willing participants.

  • Gary Burns

    It has always been party before country with republicans.

  • disqus_o6WgrGop4W

    Be careful what you wish for, Hillary.

    Every single member of congress from the Republican side knows they got there because of Trump supporters, even if only a small minority. They also know that they could (not would) lose in a primary against a pro Trump candidate if they stand up to Trump. So, do you really want the prospect of even more pro Trump members of the house and senate if by some chance Trump wins again in two years?

  • Evan German

    So glad that she is still speaking out, and not just against Trump, but his enablers too!

  • bflogayle

    She's probably not the best person to call for an investigation on an alleged groper given her history attacking her husband's accusers.