Conflicted Comey explains himself
In a memo sent to FBI employees on Friday, Director James Comey tried to explain why he went public with the bureau's reopening of the Clinton email case at this point in time.
In an internal memo obtained by Fox News, the beleaguered director noted that the FBI typically would not communicate with the public when reopening a case, according to a Department of Justice source. But Comey said he had to in this case because Clinton is seeking the White House in an election on Nov. 8.
“Of course we don’t ordinarily tell Congress about ongoing investigations, but here I feel an obligation to do so given that I testified repeatedly in recent months that our investigation was completed,” Comey wrote. "I also think it would be misleading to the American people were we not to supplement the record.
“At the same time, however, given that we do not know the significance of this newly discovered collection of emails, I don’t want to create a misleading impression,” Comey’s letter continued. "In trying to strike that balance, in a brief letter, and in the middle of an election season, there is significant risk of being misunderstood, but I wanted you to hear directy from me about it."
The bombshell revelation that newly discovered emails had prompted a new look into whether Clinton or those around her had broken the law my mishandling sensitive information rocked the race for the White House Friday.
Comey informed eight Republican lawmakers that new emails had surfaced that were relevant to the investigation, and warranted a new look.
With both sides clamoring for the FBI to release specifics about the emails, it appears certain that at least some of the documents - or parts of them - will be published before the election.
There will be a review by several intelligence agencies to make sure anything made public is not classified. That will take time - certainly more than two weeks. So Comey - damned if he did and damned if he didn't - tried to choose a middle road by letting Congress know of the new evidence while cautioning both sides that the emails may be nothing new.
Who are the emails addressed to? If they were sent to Weiner's email account, that would be strong evidence that Clinton and Abedin were trying to hide something. Using a third party to exchange messages is right out of the coverup playbook.
We just don't know, and won't know for a while.