FBI Director Comey Reopens Clinton E-mail Investigation

FBI Director Comey Reopens Clinton E-mail Investigation

In an unprecedented move, FBI Director Comey has written congressional leaders, informing them that the Bureau has reopened the Clinton e-mail investigation after discovering new e-mails to review. The move was quite a surprise, since longstanding FBI and Department of Justice policies recommend against commenting about ongoing investigations shortly before a major election.

But Comey was free, as the FBI Director, to go against these traditions, and he chose to do so because he felt this was a very special case. He’d already spoken before Congress several times, assuring them that the investigation was closed, so he felt compelled to set the record straight with the latest information. So evidently he felt it was the honorable thing to do to update the congressional leadership on the latest turn of events. But some question his motives, citing that the revelation plays right into Donald Trump’s hands, rescuing the controversial candidate from a long stint of bad press following his very own sordid misogyny scandal. With great glee Donald Trump has been exaggerating the latest news for maximum dramatic effect, trumpeting news of Hillary’s criminal enterprise, as though she’s actually been convicted of a criminal conspiracy.

In reality, no wrong-doing has been determined at this stage. Some e-mails were found on a device during another investigation, which may be pertinent to the Clinton e-mail investigation, so the FBI reopened the investigation in order to be thorough. These new e-mails could be absolutely nothing. Or they could be a smoking gun. We will have to wait to see what the investigators find, and what conclusions they draw.

Of course, it doesn’t help the Clinton camp that the device in question belonged to her long-time aid, Huma Abedin, the estranged wife of Anthony Wiener, the former congressman embroiled in several sexting scandals, most recently with an underaged girl. Abedin apparently shared this device with her husband, so now questions are flying about. Did the now disgraced congressman have access to classified e-mails through the shared device?

To be sure, Director Comey was caught between the proverbial rock and hard place. If he sat tight and said nothing about the investigation, then down the road a piece angry republican voters and politicians might have been accused him of a coverup, especially if Clinton took the White House on November 8th. On the other hand, he’s currently suffering angry accusations that his decision to inform congress (which promptly leaked the news) is tantamount to a form of election tampering.

And on that note, perhaps the real culprit here is Congress. After all, can’t they keep a confidential briefing to themselves?

Learn about Director Comey’s decision to write congress (CNN)



Photo: Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic (Wikimedia Commons)

Hillary Clinton’s e-mails: extremely careless, not criminal (FBI)

Hillary Clinton

The results of the FBI’s in-depth probe of Hillary Clinton’s use of a private e-mail server during her tenure as Secretary of State in the Obama Administration were released today. The FBI found that though Clinton’s behaviors and practices were extremely careless, they did not rise to the level of criminality. The FBI recommends to federal prosecutors that no charges should be filed.

There was strong push-back from right wing groups and blogs across the internet and throughout the media. Many allege a cover-up, and point to a recent closed meeting between former President Bill Clinton and the current Attorney, General Loretta Lynch, to support their claims. Many also contend that other people in government face legal prosecution for far lesser breaches of security, and ask why should Clinton be any different.

The news is bittersweet for the Clinton campaign. Although a recommendation for indictment would have been devastating for the campaign, the FBI’s characterization of Clinton as “extremely careless” is fodder for her critics, particularly Donald Trump, along with a large array of conservative leaders, journalists, social media activists, and pundits. Now Clinton can move forward with her campaign, but she will likely deal with the fallout from the FBI’s less-than-stellar assessment of her decisions and actions, right up until the general election in November.

Learn more about the FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton’s e-mail server (CNN)


Photo: By Lorie ShaullOwn work, CC BY-SA 4.0, commons.wikimedia.org
image resized and sharpened