Comey backs down
James Comey again gave Hillary a pass on the email investigation by announcing on Sunday afternoon, November 6, two days before the election, that he stands by his July 5, 2016 decision to not recommend indictment of Hillary. This may help Hillary win, even though she still is under investigation for the pay-for-play Clinton Foundation scandal.
The Washington Post reported Sunday afternoon, November 6, 2016:
FBI Director James B. Comey notified key members of Congress Sunday afternoon that after reviewing newly discovered Hillary Clinton emails the agency stands by its original findings against recommending charges.
Comey wrote that investigators had worked “around the clock” to review all the emails found on a device used by former congressman Anthony Weiner that had been sent to or from Clinton and that “we have not changed our conclusions expressed in July.
The July 5 decision has been criticized because Comey concluded that Hillary did not have the criminal intent to violate the statutes when the statutes at issue do not require a specific criminal intent. He said there wasn’t “clear” evidence of criminal intent, which means there was evidence of criminal intent that Comey did not believe was clear. Since there was evidence of intent, Comey should have recommended indictment and left it to the court to decide whether the evidence is clear on intent, assuming that a court would agree with Comey that the statutes require intent.
But more important is the issue of the relation between the investigation into the pay-for-play conducted by Hillary as secretary of state to get contributions to the William J. Clinton Foundation, aka the William J. Corleone Foundation. One can make the reasonable argument that Hillary used a private unsecured email server system to hide the pay-for-play scheme. The two scandals should be seen as one scandal. A jury or judge, the trier of facts, should and would consider the pay-for-play scandal as part of why Hillary used a private email server. This goes directly to intent: why did she use the private email server? While Comey believes that there is no criminal intent, that is an issue for the trier of facts. There is enough evidence, even if we apply the intent requirement, to recommend indictment.
Comey has separated the pay-for-play scandal from the email scandal, which allows him to ignore that Hillary used the private email server to hide the pay-for-play scheme.
Comey did not comment on how and why Hillary’s emails were on Weiner’s and Huma’s computers. Nor did he comment on whether his original finding that Hillary acted with extreme negligence was affected by the Weiner and Huma emails. Does this mean that Hillary was even more extremely negligent? Comey should explain whether the Hillary emails on Weiner’s computers were confidential emails.
Comey is now back in the good graces of the Democrats.
It seems that Comey again succumbed to pressure from Obama, the Democrats, and Attorney General Loretta Lynch, who criticized his reopening the email investigation.
The question now is, what will the FBI agents who do not agree with Comey’s conclusion do about it? Will they step up to tell the public the truth about the investigation and why Comey did not consider the pay-for-play scheme on the issue of intent? We are voting on Tuesday without knowing the facts of the investigation, and what Comey found in the Weiner emails, except that Hillary acted with extreme negligence.
The Republicans botched this by not demanding a special prosecutor when this scandal broke in April 2015.