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FBI Mayberry Machiavellis Bulletin, 2016

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[Oct 30, 2016] Computer seized in Weiner probe prompts FBI to take new steps in Clinton email inquiry

Why thousands of emails were forwarded to unsecured computer shared by Abedin with her husband?
How they were forwarded, were they forwarded individually or as a batch operation ?
How many of them are those 30K deleted by Hillary "private" emails ?
Does this batch contains any of previously discovered classified emails?
What was the purpose of forwarding those emails to home computer.
Notable quotes:
"... Somebody at the F.B.I. must have picked up on the fact that the "FIX" was exposed hence on Friday an announcement was made by the F.B.I. that they had found further e-mails, I suspect that all the e-mails will have to be re-examined in the light of the lenient views taken by some F.B. I. Officers taken at the first pass or some more deletions will of necessity have to take place. ..."
"... Meanwhile Clinton is shouting and screaming at the F.B.I. because she now knows that a new fix will be very difficult or impossible in the light of the revealed information and her "charity donations" of over $800,000 have not only been wasted but have exposed her flank! ..."
"... ...the agents discovered the existence of tens of thousands of emails, some of them sent between Ms. Abedin and other Clinton aides, according to senior law enforcement officials ..."
"... Nevertheless, how do you forward tens of thousands of emails? I don't think it can be a batch operation, they must have been forwarded individually. And what of the 30,000 destroyed (by Clinton) emails? ..."
"... "We don't know what this means yet except that it's a real bombshell. And it is unthinkable that the Director of the FBI would take this action lightly, that he would put this letter forth to the Congress of the United States saying there is more information out there about classified e-mails and call it to the attention of congress unless it was something requiring serious investigation. So that's where we are..." ..."
Oct 30, 2016 | www.washingtonpost.com
Don Smith 4:38 PM EDT
The other day I was reading an article which was talking about two "charity donations" given to the wife of an F.B.I. Officer involved in the e-mail investigation by "friends of the Clinton's".

The article was very low key it's author briefly wondered if the officer concerned should have excused himself from the investigation. I also thought it strange that the officers interest had not been declared. Some time later I was reading about details concerning the e-mails sent from Clinton's staff to members of the F.B.I. ,basically what was happening was that the security rating of the information contained in non deleted mails was being talked down, at which point for me at least alarm bells were ringing loud and clear but I did not expect there to be any reaction. O.K. So I'm that cynical.

Somebody at the F.B.I. must have picked up on the fact that the "FIX" was exposed hence on Friday an announcement was made by the F.B.I. that they had found further e-mails, I suspect that all the e-mails will have to be re-examined in the light of the lenient views taken by some F.B. I. Officers taken at the first pass or some more deletions will of necessity have to take place.

Meanwhile Clinton is shouting and screaming at the F.B.I. because she now knows that a new fix will be very difficult or impossible in the light of the revealed information and her "charity donations" of over $800,000 have not only been wasted but have exposed her flank!

CanardNoir 2:20 PM EDT [Edited]
My Fellow Americans - Here is what the NYT is reporting in contrast to the WaPost's email count of more than 1,000, in terms of an actual number of emails to be reviewed:

"...the agents discovered the existence of tens of thousands of emails, some of them sent between Ms. Abedin and other Clinton aides, according to senior law enforcement officials."

Subsequently, that could change what the initial investigation by the Bureau had to look at this summer, and the understanding that all of the parties acknowledge that about 30k emails were deleted. So the "tens of thousands" may be duplicates or perhaps copies of the "thumb-drive" that one of HRC's lawyers was said to have been given?

At any rate, this must bring into play at least 18 U.S. Code § 2071 - Concealment, removal, or mutilation generally - and raise the question about whether conflicting DOJ internal "policy" has any affect on any of the Administration's current or former appointees, in terms of their "oath of office" or moving forward. And that would bring 5 U.S. Code § 3331 - Oath of office - into play as well as the 5-year statute of limitations.

We're likely still "Doomed" - so don't get too happy just yet, because EPA could still disallow "draining" anything as a result of the Clean Water Act, as amended.

CanardNoir 2:41 PM EDT
And here's the Sec. 2071 reason "why":

(b) "Whoever, having the custody of any such record, proceeding, map, book, document, paper, or other thing, willfully and unlawfully conceals, removes, mutilates, obliterates, falsifies, or destroys the same, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both; and shall forfeit his office and be disqualified from holding any office under the United States..."

Rick B. 1:57 PM EDT
Time to appoint Patrick Fitzgerald as special counsel
9:57 AM EST

[Edited] Lynch had to recuse herself after meeting with Bill Clinton. Had there not been information showing intent to violate espionage laws, Comey would have never acted. The fact is she is a criminal and cannot be elected . Image an elected Hillary who is impeached. The USA deserves better than a this and must turn the Clintons out to pasture forever.

Avatar666 8:23 AM EST

The FBI used to be a respected agency. Now, not so much. Working for, and in collusion with Obama, Loretta Lynch, the Clinton's and the media makes their "investigation" suspect, to say the least.

Avatar666 8:07 AM EST

Hillary "will say anything and do anything" (Obama's words, not mine) to get elected. Trying to blame her malfeasance on the FBI is simply stupid. She is so obsessed with money and power that she openly states "I have spent my life helping children and women". Right. Like when she was an 8 year Senator who only introduced 3 bills naming a couple highways and a bank. Her followers are dupes and dunces and we can only hope they don't outnumber rationally thinking people.

Kathleen Galt 5:31 AM EST

To think that Weiner and who knows who else had access to U.S. National Security information on the Weiner/Abedin computer. Sure sounds like the FBI is after Abedin not Clinton.

Dems loved Comey when he slapped Clinton on the wrist for playing loose with U.S. National Security on her email server. Now those same Dems want to burn Comey at the stake.

Let's not forget how Comey has come to be such a respected official
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/artic...
In vivid testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday, Comey said he alerted FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III and raced, sirens blaring, to join Ashcroft in his hospital room, arriving minutes before Gonzales and Card. Ashcroft, summoning the strength to lift his head and speak, refused to sign the papers they had brought. Gonzales and Card, who had never acknowledged Comey's presence in the room, turned and left.
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The sickbed visit was the start of a dramatic showdown between the White House and the Justice Department in early 2004 that, according to Comey, was resolved only when Bush overruled Gonzales and Card. But that was not before Ashcroft, Comey, Mueller and their aides prepared a mass resignation, Comey said. The domestic spying by the National Security Agency continued for several weeks without Justice approval, wheresthechow 2:27 AM EST The Clinton's are just so amazing in their cavalier above-the-law attitude that they can't even renovate their house without breaking the law.

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/10/30/us/politics/chap...

wwrfla 2:59 AM EST

[Edited] "The Case Against Hillary Clinton"...as written by Christopher Hitchens.

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&...

Truer words have never been written.

#NeverHillary!!! #BernieOrBust!!!

dcammer 10/29/2016 9:31 PM EST

Mr. Weiner has not aged well.....and it is not over....avoid park benches do not visit remote areas.....People you and I know may have a Boat moored in a slip at a Dock or a Yacht club that's Normal Americana....Yet A.G.Loretta Lynch was waiting on the Tarmac in her Jet Plane as Bill Clinton leaves His Jet Plane to chat with Loretta ....this is an area of privilege far above yacht club status....and this meeting broke several laws very quickly...so the A.G. has no authority to comment on what the head of F.B.I. has done regarding The Weiner Email discovery and whatever Bill had swindled for future favors or past I.O.U's has now become a waste of AA jet fuel for the,"IN", crowd.....Hillary is starting to look a little like Mr.Weiner; facial tension ,gaunt,hollow cheeks,terse lips,Bill was supposed to take care of all this....right?Now Mr. Comey had taken the J. Edgar Hoover pledge to Serve and protect and that would have been us under all other circumstances.....but he has to be loyal to his associates for they are the top 2% of the entire population and they deserve to be treated as the most important the bureau has....what transpired on the first pass left them in Mayberry P.D. limbo and will never happen could someone help Loretta Lynch to see the light or the exit sign ....Please

711810943 10/29/2016 10:56 PM EST

Yep, we're definitely talking about the battle of the twin dumpster fires here...

Celebrity gossip trumps policy, if you'll forgive the expression. But what can you expect in a country that can name three Kardashian sisters, but not one foreign head of state.

Hmmm... Those deck chairs need rearranging... See ya...

canaffordit 10/29/2016 9:09 PM EST

Laptop or PC is property of US once claissified info discovered. 18USC 798, right? Who says a warrant is needed to seize, protect? No so. And, for sure, they will read, use of which may or may not be impeded thereby. Still, there is allot to investigate, incl. numerous apparent violations of ethics in govt. act, etc, failures to disclose gifts / income, etc.

RTDP 10/29/2016 8:29 PM EST

The Clintons run a morally corrupt RICO that holds itself above the law. With Obama's support, the Justice Dept., IRS, FBI, State Dept. have aided and abetted the Clinton corruption of our government. This illustrates Hayek's point in The Road To Serfdom that when very powerful government institutions are created, "the worst rise to the top". Public power and money attract the least scrupulous, least honest, most power hungry, and most determined. Though Clinton's cabal publicly poses themselves as humanitarian progressives, the Doug Band statement of operations among Teneo, CGI, the Foundation, and the Clintons presents the underlying purpose of selling influence and the crony capital structure devised to split the proceeds. The Clinton Foundation operates outside the law. So where's the MSM, the IRS, the FBI, Justice...what justice?

See: http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2016/10/a_...

Kathleen Galt 5:31 AM EDT

To think that Weiner and who knows who else had access to U.S. National Security information on the Weiner/Abedin computer. Sure sounds like the FBI is after Abedin not Clinton.

Dems loved Comey when he slapped Clinton on the wrist for playing loose with U.S. National Security on her email server. Now those same Dems want to burn Comey at the stake.

Let's not forget how Comey has come to be such a respected official
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/artic...
In vivid testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday, Comey said he alerted FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III and raced, sirens blaring, to join Ashcroft in his hospital room, arriving minutes before Gonzales and Card. Ashcroft, summoning the strength to lift his head and speak, refused to sign the papers they had brought. Gonzales and Card, who had never acknowledged Comey's presence in the room, turned and left.
ad_icon

The sickbed visit was the start of a dramatic showdown between the White House and the Justice Department in early 2004 that, according to Comey, was resolved only when Bush overruled Gonzales and Card. But that was not before Ashcroft, Comey, Mueller and their aides prepared a mass resignation, Comey said. The domestic spying by the National Security Agency continued for several weeks without Justice approval, he said.

"I was angry," Comey testified. "I thought I just witnessed an effort to take advantage of a very sick man, who did not have the powers of the attorney general because they had been transferred to me."

tjonathan 10/29/2016 7:38 PM EDT

Watergate's Carl Bernstein: FBI Wouldn't Reopen A Probe Unless It Is "A Real Bombshell"

HappyInSF 10/29/2016 7:09 PM EDT

[Edited] In a previous release of information as a result of a Freedom of Information suit, it became known that Huma Abedin had forwarded emails from Clinton's private email server, to Ms. Abedin's personal yahoo email account.

The new bit of news today, is that the FBI found TENS OF THOUSANDS of Clinton related emails on Weiner's (shared with Abedin?) laptop. I understand that Mrs. Clinton was SOS for four years.

Nevertheless, how do you forward tens of thousands of emails? I don't think it can be a batch operation, they must have been forwarded individually. And what of the 30,000 destroyed (by Clinton) emails?

The only thing that makes sense, is that the newly discovered emails include some of the missing emails. As Carl Bernstein (one of the two original Post reporters who broke the Watergate story, which led to Nixon's resignation) said yesterday:

"We don't know what this means yet except that it's a real bombshell. And it is unthinkable that the Director of the FBI would take this action lightly, that he would put this letter forth to the Congress of the United States saying there is more information out there about classified e-mails and call it to the attention of congress unless it was something requiring serious investigation. So that's where we are..."

[Oct 29, 2016] Why such the abrupt reversal by Comey, who by all indications is Obama man and helped to squash the investigation?

Notable quotes:
"... So we have a traitor as POTUS that is not only corrupt, but compromised...and a woman that is a serial liar, perjured herself multiple times at the Hearing whom is running for POTUS. ..."
Oct 29, 2016 | economistsview.typepad.com
Fred C. Dobbs : October 29, 2016 at 02:08 PM
(You would suppose that the FBI director is under the control of the Justice Department, but evidently not.)

Officials warned FBI head about decision on e-mails
http://www.bostonglobe.com/news/politics/2016/10/29/officials-warned-fbi-head-about-decision-mails/AsSTVmOMuZFsg7xnOTmcSK/story.html?event=event25

Sari Horwitz - Washington Post - October 29, 2016

WASHINGTON - Senior Justice Department officials warned the FBI that Director James B. Comey's decision to notify Congress about renewing the investigation into Hillary Clinton's private email server was not consistent with long-standing practices of the department, according to officials familiar with the discussions.

... ... ...

im1dc -> Fred C. Dobbs... , October 29, 2016 at 02:13 PM
Comely went off the farm all on his own and must answer for his actions. Simple as that.

BTW, imo this will not impact the outcome of the Election November 8th.

likbez -> im1dc... October 29, 2016 at 05:29 PM
"Comely went off the farm all on his own and must answer for his actions. Simple as that."

IMHO that's extremely naïve. Such a "career limiting move"(CLM) in Washington-speak almost never done "on his own". Exception are whistleblowers like William Binney, who already decided for themselves that "this is the last stand" and are ready to face consequences.

Few Washington bureaucrats want to became outcasts within the administration, even the lame duck administration. Bureaucracy, at the end, is just another flavor of a political coalition and they tend to cling to power by whatever means possible including criminal.

Moreover, Comey so far was viewed as an "Obama man" who abruptly squashed the "emailgate" investigation instead of expanding it investigating Bill Clinton for his "accidental" meeting with Loretta Lynch and possibly putting the old fogey on the bench for the obstruction of justice. And who at the end granted immunity to all key members of Clinton entourage including Huma Abedin who proved to be, security wise, not the sharpest tool in the shed.

See http://www.softpanorama.org/Skeptics/Political_skeptic/Neocons/Hillary/Emailgate/understanding_hillary_clinton_email_scandal.shtml

So why such the abrupt reversal?

The only plausible explanation that I see is that Comey action reflects a deep split within the USA elite including internal cracks and pressure within FBI brass (possibly from rank-and-file investigators, who understand what's going on) as for viability Hillary as the next POTUS.

I would ask you a very simple question: do you really want a POTUS that has, say, 80% probability to be impeached by the House during the first year of his/her administration?

And any security specialist will tell you that Hillary creation of "shadow IT" within the State Department is a crime. The behavior that would never be tolerated not only in super-secretive State Department (which recently assumed some functions previously performed by CIA), but in any large corporation.

It also might well be that there are new highly compromising evidence (not necessary from Wiener case) which changed the "grand calculation".

Here is an interesting post that I recently come across:
http://www.breitbart.com/2016-presidential-race/2016/10/27/team-clinton-head-emails-published-wikileaks-mood/#comment-2971488944

DoruSlinger✓ᵀᴿᵁᴹᴾ

Wikileaks needs to get this out (I have not verified the info sent to me last night):

So here's the REAL story.​ ​

Amb. Stevens was sent to Benghazi post haste in order to retrieve US made Stinger missiles supplied to Ansar al Sharia without Congressional oversight or permission.

Hillary brokered the deal through Stevens and a private arms dealer named Marc Turi. Then some of the shoulder fired missiles ended up in Afghanistan used against our own military. It was July 25th, 2012 when a Chinook helicopter was taken down by one of our own Stingers, but the idiot Taliban didn't arm the missile and the Chinook didn't explode, but had to land anyway.

An ordnance team recovered the serial number off the missile which led back to a cache of Stingers being kept in Qatar by the CIA

Obama and Hillary were now in full panic mode and Stevens was sent in to retrieve the rest of the Stingers. This was a "do-or-die" mission, which explains the stand down orders given to multiple commando teams.

It was the State Dept, not the CIA that supplied them to our sworn enemies, because Petraeus wouldn't supply these deadly weapons due to their potential use on commercial aircraft. Then, Obama threw Gen. Petraeus under the bus after he refused to testify that he OK'd the BS talking points about a spontaneous uprising due to a Youtube video.

Obama and Hillary committed treason...and THIS is what the investigation is all about, why she had a private server, (in order to delete the digital evidence), and why Obama, two weeks after the attack, told the UN that the attack was because of a Youtube video, even though everyone knew it was not.

Further...the Taliban knew that this administration aided and abetted the enemy without Congressional approval when Boehner created the Select Cmte, and the Taliban began pushing the Obama Administration for the release of 5 Taliban Generals. Bowe Bergdahl was just a pawn...everyone KNEW he was a traitor.

So we have a traitor as POTUS that is not only corrupt, but compromised...and a woman that is a serial liar, perjured herself multiple times at the Hearing whom is running for POTUS.

Only the Dems, with their hands out, palms up, will support her. Perhaps this is why no military aircraft was called in because the administration knew our enemies had Stingers.

[Oct 29, 2016] Dont worry, Lloyd Blankfein is checking Comeys work

Notable quotes:
"... FBI today placed the Weiner investigation under their crack Special Agent for Witness Liquidation, Aaron McFarlane ..."
Oct 29, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
Cleanup October 28, 2016 at 6:07 pm

Don't worry, Lloyd Blankfein is checking Comey's work.

FBI today placed the Weiner investigation under their crack Special Agent for Witness Liquidation, Aaron McFarlane.

[Oct 29, 2016] Comey was forced to tell Congress the Clinton e-mail investigation was being reopened. If he did not then sure as hell the existence of those e-mails on the Weiner computer would be leaked.

People started to demand Hillary scalp...
Notable quotes:
"... FBI agents looking at Weiners weiner on his laptop, sees tons of Huma emails and Clinton emails, turn and tell their boss they are disgusted with all this and he needs to disrupt her winning office or they are going public. That's what happened! ..."
"... I think you are spot on with that observation. Comey was forced to tell Congress the Clinton e-mail investigation was being reopened. If he did not then sure as hell the existence of those e-mails on the Weiner computer would be leaked. ..."
"... I agree, it is all puppet theatre with some humor added. The more outrageous the more believable, right? ..."
"... It achieves some "unity" around Trump when there wasn't enough going down the home stretch, it became OBVIOUS she's not a winner, which anyone with half a brain has known since she announced? So maybe they are pulling the plug and she's been beat officially? Which leaves the question is Trump for real? ..."
"... I must say, fake or not he fought hard? I like Trump. I hope he realizes if he did decide to do GOOD, he could become very powerful. Why these leaders get to these positions and give it all up for a little greed is beyond me? They could be 10 times more powerful by just being GOOD? You've got the money Trump, if your GOOD, you'll obtain the power? Trump has some political capital and makes him more attractive to the establishment. My guess is, im being too optimistic for good things to happen? I hope Im wrong. ..."
"... The Clintons are a great success story. They never set out to be legal, only not to get sent to jail. By this standard they have succeeded. They have wealth and power and are 2 of the most admired people on earth. Lawyers and fines are just businesses expenses. ..."
"... I want to share my intentions with my fellow ZH Bloggers and Patriots, beginning today, I am going to be sending a series of communications directly to Paul Ryan by using his WEBSITE found at the following URL: http://www.speaker.gov/contact ..."
"... I plan to both encourage and challenge the Speaker. I know many on ZH look at Paul Ryan as a hypocrite. I understand why you may hold this position. I too am very disappointed with recent REPUBLICAN positions and communications. However, now is the time to unite as "WE THE PEOPLE". All of the data is suggesting that leadership within US Government Agencies is corrupted by special interests and their own fleshly nature. We see evidence of TREASON everywhere. But I believe brighter days lie ahead for America at least in the short term. ..."
"... AMERICA has lost her way and this needs to be corrected. ..."
Oct 29, 2016 | www.zerohedge.com
TahoeBilly2012 Rubicon Oct 29, 2016 9:46 AM ,
FBI agents looking at Weiners weiner on his laptop, sees tons of Huma emails and Clinton emails, turn and tell their boss they are disgusted with all this and he needs to disrupt her winning office or they are going public. That's what happened!
Tarjan TahoeBilly2012 Oct 29, 2016 10:18 AM ,
I think you are spot on with that observation. Comey was forced to tell Congress the Clinton e-mail investigation was being reopened. If he did not then sure as hell the existence of those e-mails on the Weiner computer would be leaked.
joego1 Tarjan Oct 29, 2016 1:15 PM ,
Check this out;

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fgbEj-YyEIQ

The FBI's hand was forced by Anonymous.

Wow72 lil dirtball Oct 29, 2016 11:07 AM ,
I agree, it is all puppet theatre with some humor added. The more outrageous the more believable, right?

It achieves some "unity" around Trump when there wasn't enough going down the home stretch, it became OBVIOUS she's not a winner, which anyone with half a brain has known since she announced? So maybe they are pulling the plug and she's been beat officially? Which leaves the question is Trump for real?

I must say, fake or not he fought hard? I like Trump. I hope he realizes if he did decide to do GOOD, he could become very powerful. Why these leaders get to these positions and give it all up for a little greed is beyond me? They could be 10 times more powerful by just being GOOD? You've got the money Trump, if your GOOD, you'll obtain the power? Trump has some political capital and makes him more attractive to the establishment. My guess is, im being too optimistic for good things to happen? I hope Im wrong.

I've been burned so many times by BIG GOV. both DEM & REP? I just cant trust anyone that is near it?

They take lots of ideas from ZH these days, and its not good..... ZH offers them the ideas, the power, and the creativity of the crowd. They use it against us, a very powerful tool.

Kidbuck Fester Oct 29, 2016 10:56 AM ,
The Clintons are a great success story. They never set out to be legal, only not to get sent to jail. By this standard they have succeeded. They have wealth and power and are 2 of the most admired people on earth. Lawyers and fines are just businesses expenses.
GUS100CORRINA Fester Oct 29, 2016 11:07 AM ,
I want to share my intentions with my fellow ZH Bloggers and Patriots, beginning today, I am going to be sending a series of communications directly to Paul Ryan by using his WEBSITE found at the following URL: http://www.speaker.gov/contact

I plan to both encourage and challenge the Speaker. I know many on ZH look at Paul Ryan as a hypocrite. I understand why you may hold this position. I too am very disappointed with recent REPUBLICAN positions and communications. However, now is the time to unite as "WE THE PEOPLE". All of the data is suggesting that leadership within US Government Agencies is corrupted by special interests and their own fleshly nature. We see evidence of TREASON everywhere. But I believe brighter days lie ahead for America at least in the short term.

AMERICA has lost her way and this needs to be corrected.

I encourage everyone who reads this message to send a note to the SPEAKER encouraging him to do four things:

  1. Get on board the TRUMP/PENCE train no matter what it takes which includes eating "HUMBLE PIE".
  2. Go after Hillary R. Clinton and press for swift and immediate justice.
  3. Enforce existing laws for TREASON that are on the books.
  4. Do whatever it takes to ensure the integrity of the American POTUS Election process. MAKE OUR VOTE COUNT.

I plan to do this today and will be sending the speaker notes and comments from ZH.

If everyone contacts the SPEAKER, he will get the POINT.

GOD's SPEED in whatever you decide to do as a CITIZEN of these UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

[Oct 21, 2016] Dennis Kucinich FBI Investigation of Hillary Clinton Was Fixed in Her Favor

Notable quotes:
"... Instead of the investigative process being focused on achieving justice, Kucinich says it was "a very political process" that had "everything to do with the 2016 presidential election" in which Clinton is the Democratic nominee. Kucinich elaborates that "the executive branch of government made an early determination that no matter what came up that there was no way that Hillary Clinton was going to have to be accountable under law for anything dealing with the mishandling of classified information." ..."
Oct 18, 2016 | The Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity

Speaking Monday on Fox News with host Neil Cavuto, former Democratic presidential candidate and United States House of Representatives Member from Ohio Dennis Kucinich opined that, from early on, the US government's investigation of Hillary Clinton for mishandling confidential information while she was Secretary of State was fixed in her favor.

Instead of the investigative process being focused on achieving justice, Kucinich says it was "a very political process" that had "everything to do with the 2016 presidential election" in which Clinton is the Democratic nominee. Kucinich elaborates that "the executive branch of government made an early determination that no matter what came up that there was no way that Hillary Clinton was going to have to be accountable under law for anything dealing with the mishandling of classified information."

Watch Kucinich's complete interview here: watch-v=K00frqv-XI8

[Oct 19, 2016] Internal Anger At The FBI Over Clinton Investigation Continues To Grow

Oct 19, 2016 | www.zerohedge.com
Submitted by Michael Krieger via Liberty Blitzbrieg blog,

This is a story that refuses to go away. Recall the post from earlier this month, Backlash Grows Months After the FBI's Sham Investigation Into Hillary Clinton , in which we learned:

Feeling the heat from congressional critics, Comey last week argued that the case was investigated by career FBI agents, "So if I blew it, they blew it, too."

But agents say Comey tied investigators' hands by agreeing to unheard-of ground rules and other demands by the lawyers for Clinton and her aides that limited their investigation.

"In my 25 years with the bureau, I never had any ground rules in my interviews," said retired agent Dennis V. Hughes, the first chief of the FBI's computer investigations unit.

Instead of going to prosecutors and insisting on using grand jury leverage to compel testimony and seize evidence, Comey allowed immunity for several key witnesses, including potential targets.

What's more, Comey cut a deal to give Clinton a "voluntary" witness interview on a major holiday, and even let her ex-chief of staff sit in on the interview as a lawyer, even though she, too, was under investigation.

Agreed retired FBI agent Michael M. Biasello: "Comey has singlehandedly ruined the reputation of the organization."

Comey made the 25 agents who worked on the case sign nondisclosure agreements. But others say morale has sunk inside the bureau.

"The director is giving the bureau a bad rap with all the gaps in the investigation," one agent in the Washington field office said. "There's a perception that the FBI has been politicized and let down the country."

While the above article focused on the opinions of retired agents, today's article zeros in on the growing frustrations of current agency employees.

The Daily Caller reports:

FBI agents say the bureau is alarmed over Director James Comey deciding not to suggest that the Justice Department prosecute Hillary Clinton over her mishandling of classified information.

According to an interview transcript given to The Daily Caller, provided by an intermediary who spoke to two federal agents with the bureau last Friday, agents are frustrated by Comey's leadership.

"This is a textbook case where a grand jury should have convened but was not. That is appalling," an FBI special agent who has worked public corruption and criminal cases said of the decision. "We talk about it in the office and don't know how Comey can keep going."

Another special agent for the bureau that worked counter-terrorism and criminal cases said he is offended by Comey's saying: "we" and "I've been an investigator."

After graduating from law school, Comey became a law clerk to a U.S. District Judge in Manhattan and later became an associate in a law firm in the city. After becoming a U.S. Attorney in the Southern District of New York, Comey's career moved through the U.S. Attorney's Office until he became Deputy Attorney General during the George W. Bush administration.

After Bush left office, Comey entered the private sector and became general counsel and Senior Vice President for Lockheed Martin, among other private sector posts. President Barack Obama appointed him to FBI director in 2013 replacing out going-director Robert Mueller.

"Comey was never an investigator or special agent. The special agents are trained investigators and they are insulted that Comey included them in 'collective we' statements in his testimony to imply that the SAs agreed that there was nothing there to prosecute," the second agent said. "All the trained investigators agree that there is a lot to prosecuted but he stood in the way."

Indeed, there were many red flags surrounding Comey from the beginning. So much so that I wrote an article in 2013 titled, So Who is James Comey, Obama's Nominee to Head the FBI?

In light of the latest revelations that the NSA is spying on the communications of millions of Verizon customers courtesy of information provided by the FBI, it probably makes sense to know a little more about Obama's nominee to head that Bureau. That man is James Comey, and he was a top Department of Justice attorney under John Ashcroft during the George W. Bush Administration (since then he has worked at Lockheed Martin and at the enormous Connecticut hedge fund Bridgewater Associates). This guy defines the revolving door cancer ruining these United States.

Now back to The Daily Caller.

According to Washington D.C. attorney Joe DiGenova, more FBI agents will be talking about the problems at bureau and specifically the handling of the Clinton case by Comey when Congress comes back into session and decides to force them to testify by subpoena.

DiGenova told WMAL radio's Drive at Five last week, "People are starting to talk. They're calling their former friends outside the bureau asking for help. We were asked to day to provide legal representation to people inside the bureau and agreed to do so and to former agents who want to come forward and talk. Comey thought this was going to go away."

He explained, "It's not. People inside the bureau are furious. They are embarrassed. They feel like they are being led by a hack but more than that that they think he's a crook. They think he's fundamentally dishonest. They have no confidence in him. The bureau inside right now is a mess."

He added, "The most important thing of all is that the agents have decided that they are going to talk."

Corruption in the USA has now reached the level where it starts destroying the entire fabric of society itself. This is a very dangerous moment.

hedgeless_horseman , Oct 18, 2016 3:54 PM

Is this the same FBI that released the 5 dancing israelis?

fleur de lis -> wombats , Oct 18, 2016 7:38 PM
It's already been done. After the Boston Marathon false flag, a number of FBI agents were assigned to the case. Two in particular probably got too close to the hoax because suddenly they were sent on a naval training assignment. The FBI on a naval training assignment in the middle of an investigation?

... ... ...

Debt-Is-Not-Money -> fleur de lis , Oct 18, 2016 9:04 PM
Comey said not to call him a "weasel". "He is not a weasel"! He's right, he is not a weasel. That would be an insult to all weasels!
Bay Area Guy -> pods , Oct 18, 2016 5:17 PM
Excellent post pods. These agents are using the Nazi excuse of "just following orders". We'll, a corrupt order is corrupt.....and so are you if you blindly follow it.
gmrpeabody -> Bay Area Guy , Oct 18, 2016 5:23 PM
"There's a perception that the FBI has been politicized and let down the country."

Perception, my ass.., try reality.

The Billy Blaze -> pods , Oct 18, 2016 8:06 PM
The NDAs were obviously procured through fraud thereby nullifying their binding nature. Dirty hands all over the Washington D.C. cesspool. Are we ready to clean house yet?
CheapBastard -> StychoKiller , Oct 18, 2016 11:26 PM
The FBI has lost total street cred first after failing to indict Crooked Hillary, and then granting immunity to her co-conspirators. the icing on the cake was Comey blaming other FBI.

When I was wanering thru the sports store yesterday, the feeling of animosity toward the FBI was very high. Once they were highly respected...Comey has trashed that agency badly...People like John Malone 9who once heade the NYC FBI office), Tompkins in the louisville area, etc would be revolted by Crooked Comey.

Occident Mortal -> BaBaBouy , Oct 18, 2016 4:32 PM
If I was in the FBI and anywhere near this cover up, I would be worried about landing up in jail.

Even if she wins this isn't going away. The Dems don't have congress.

PrayingMantis -> BaBaBouy , Oct 18, 2016 4:37 PM

... I'm sure the FBI agents have been angry <nudge, wink> since June 1996 >>> https://epic.org/privacy/databases/fbi/filegate/ >>> http://www.cnn.com/ALLPOLITICS/1997/gen/resources/fbi.files/index.orig.html >>> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_House_FBI_files_controversy ...

... I'm not implying that those 900(?) FBI files of prominent Americans given by the FBI to the Klinton Krime Kartel were being used for blackmail ... and perhaps the reason why the dynamic duo keeps getting "get-out-of-jail-free" cards whenever they need it ...

Omen IV -> jcaz , Oct 18, 2016 7:38 PM
The personnel are "angry" but no whistleblowers and therefore no one wants to do their job

Cops double up in Chicago sit on the sidelines and let the gangs kill each other and the FBI let's the Clintons steal everything and rape the citizens

This is a ...... Movie script

Dabooda -> SomethingSomethingDarkSide , Oct 18, 2016 4:43 PM
@hedgeless horseman: The FBI did not release the "Dancing Israelis." It was Judge Michael Chertoff. He was in charge of the Criminal Division in the Justice Department on 9/11. Essentially responsible for the 9/11 non-investigation. He let hundreds of Israeli spies who were arrested prior to and on 9/11 go back home to Israel. He was also a prosecuting judge in the first terrorist attack on the WTC in 1993. Chertoff purportedly holds dual citizenship with the US and Israel. His family is one of the founding families of the state of Israel and his mother was one of the first ever agents of the Mossad, Israel's spy agency. His father and uncle are ordained rabbis and teachers of the Talmud.

He was subsequently named head of the Dept of Homeland Security. His company arranged for placement of Rapascan nude scanners in American airports. Who says crime doesn't pay?

brain_glitch -> Dabooda , Oct 18, 2016 4:48 PM
"and co-author of the USA PATRIOT Act"
Creative_Destruct -> InjectTheVenom , Oct 18, 2016 4:03 PM

..... Comey last week argued that the case was investigated by career FBI agents, "So if I blew it, they blew it, too."

...... agents say Comey tied investigators' hands by agreeing to unheard-of ground rules and other demands by the lawyers for Clinton and her aides that limited their investigation.

...... In my 25 years with the bureau, I never had any ground rules in my interviews," said retired agent Dennis V. Hughes, the first chief of the FBI's computer investigations unit.

Time for Comey, Bill, Hillary, Lynch, Obama, MSM Media, and on, and on, to ALL

DANCE ON THE FUCKING AIR !!!

(Method of neck suspension, NOT rope.....piano wire..)

chubbar -> InjectTheVenoM , Oct 18, 2016 6:52 PM
I get a kick out of these career FBI agents worrying that Comey has sullied the reputation of the FBI (he has). Here is a fucking news flash for you assholes, if Clinton gets elected there is an almost certain chance that she starts a fucking thermo nuclear war with Russia. You, your families and the precious FBI won't exist 30 minutes after that starts seeing that you are sitting at ground zero. Does that do anything to get you off your asses and perhaps do your fucking jobs?

There is now about 30 minutes of video that proves the Clinton campaign conspired to incite violence at Trump rallys. How about you fuckers get off your ass and start investigating this and the "pay to play" shit the Podesta tapes came out with? Or, how about the email that indicates POTUS illegally influenced the Supreme Court Justice on ACA??? Christ, it's a target rich environment for felony convictions out there and you guys are doing what????

fishpoeM -> hedgeless_horseman , Oct 18, 2016 5:14 PM
Allegedly, there was a much larger contingent of Mossad agents that were detained immediately after 9/11. An additional 100 or so were in the States "studying art" and similar cover stories when in fact they were carefully casing various buildings including banks and Federal sites. For reasons never made public, the FBI let them all go back to Israel. Without waterboarding Dick Cheney, the public will never know the truth.
Mustafa Kemal -> Calmyourself , Oct 18, 2016 4:38 PM
" Sorry, intentions are one thing actions another at least among adults."

Actually, it can also be part of the game. Eisenhower is well known for his MIC warning on TV just as he was leaving office. However, if you look at what he did, and what he allowed Allen Dulles to do, he was part of it. Making fake apologies after the fact provides some balm but doesnt undo the damage.

Dr. Bonzo , Oct 18, 2016 3:58 PM
I'm tellin ya.... rank-and-file aren't sitting around giggling that this fucking cunt is walking on water on shit they would be hung out to dry for. The Podesta leaks are NSA standard intercepts. Anyone could have grabbed them from a standard intercept. Tja, that's the problem when you go hooovering up the entire internet. Pretty fucking hard to compartmentalize collection efforts on that scale.

We applaud and support the members of our armed forces and intelligence community who take their oath of office seriously and refuse to let these murderous internationalists tear down our country without a fucking fight.

Bay of Pigs -> Dr. Bonzo , Oct 18, 2016 4:23 PM
Agreed. I emailed Trey Gowdy with the James Okeefe DNC video.

Somebody in Wash DC needs to grow a set of balls and get on that story now, including the FBI.

PS I just had my cousin ask me if I had "fact checked" the Okeefe video. I was like, WTF are you talking about?

Joebloinvestor , Oct 18, 2016 3:58 PM
Evidently, the National Enquirer is doing Hillary like they did Edwards.

http://www.nationalenquirer.com/celebrity/hillary-clinton-lesbian-sex-cl...

Rainman , Oct 18, 2016 3:59 PM
When Hillary gets in there all these old FBI white boyz will be shown the door and replaced with pussylesbo power. These are the good old days,be afraid.

[Oct 17, 2016] FBI Agents Angry at Comey for Not Charging Clinton

EUTimes.net

The decision to let Hillary Clinton off the hook for mishandling classified information has roiled the FBI and Department of Justice, with one person closely involved in the year-long probe telling FoxNews.com that career agents and attorneys on the case unanimously believed the Democratic presidential nominee should have been charged.

The source, who spoke to FoxNews.com on the condition of anonymity, said Obama appointee FBI Director James Comey's dramatic July 5 announcement that he would not recommend to the Attorney General's office that the former secretary of state be charged left members of the investigative team dismayed and disgusted. More than 100 FBI agents and analysts worked around the clock with six attorneys from the DOJ's National Security Division, Counter Espionage Section, to investigate the case.

"No trial level attorney agreed, no agent working the case agreed, with the decision not to prosecute - it was a top-down decision," said the source, whose identity and role in the case has been verified by FoxNews.com.

A high-ranking FBI official told Fox News that while it might not have been a unanimous decision, "It was unanimous that we all wanted her [Clinton's] security clearance yanked."

"It is safe to say the vast majority felt she should be prosecuted," the senior FBI official told Fox News. "We were floored while listening to the FBI briefing because Comey laid it all out, and then said 'but we are doing nothing,' which made no sense to us."

The FBI declined to comment directly, but instead referred Fox News to multiple public statements Comey has made in which he has thrown water on the idea that politics played a role in the agency's decision not to recommend charges.

[Oct 14, 2016] 18 US 2071: Concealment, removal, or mutilation generally

Oct 14, 2016 | www.zerohedge.com

hooligan2009 Oct 14, 2016 9:18 AM

still no mention of the clincher - that proves the entire democrat party has no respect for the office of president - or any other government office for that matter..

stay on target!!!

(b) Whoever, having the custody of any such record, proceeding, map, book, document, paper, or other thing, willfully and unlawfully conceals, removes, mutilates, obliterates, falsifies, or destroys the same, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both; and shall forfeit his office and be

disqualified from holding any office under the United States .

As used in this subsection, the term "office" does not include the office held by any person as a retired officer of the Armed Forces of the United States."
(Source: 18 U.S. Code § 2071 – Concealment, removal, or mutilation generally )

[Sep 28, 2016] It is not that we do not trust the agents, we do not trust the FBI leadership

Notable quotes:
"... Only three references to Comey as a "Treas-Weasel" appear in a Google search. ..."
"... Are there no longer any "deep throats" left at the FBI? Because now would be an excellent opportunity for one of them to start making phone calls – but to who? Greenwald maybe? He seems to be the only investigative journalist left but he doesn't even live in this country .. ..."
Sep 28, 2016 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
Roger Smith September 28, 2016 at 2:45 pm

Re: (Pop Goes the) Weasels

"I knew there were going to be all kinds of rocks thrown, but this organization and the people who did this are honest, independent people."

Well Comey, it is not that we do not trust the agents, we do not trust the leadership. If any of the underground reports I have seen are indications, the agents were trying and struggling to do their jobs.

Reply
Jim Haygood September 28, 2016 at 2:53 pm

Only three references to Comey as a "Treas-Weasel" appear in a Google search.

All three are on naked capitalism in July 2016. And I know who did it.

*peers out window for suspicious unmarked vehicles*

Reply
justanotherprogressive September 28, 2016 at 3:01 pm

Are there no longer any "deep throats" left at the FBI? Because now would be an excellent opportunity for one of them to start making phone calls – but to who? Greenwald maybe? He seems to be the only investigative journalist left but he doesn't even live in this country ..

Jen September 28, 2016 at 3:11 pm

Just do a data dump on Reddit. We already know the FBI won't look there.

crittermom September 28, 2016 at 4:33 pm

Roger Smith–

" it is not that we do not trust the agents, we do not trust the leadership."

Perfectly stated. Nailed it!

Sooo ..I wonder how those low-ranking soldiers in the military are faring using the same defense?

I remain infuriated that nothing happened to her. I now have yet another head (Comey) I want to see in my front yard guillotine. Grrrrrrr

Reply
cwaltz September 28, 2016 at 5:57 pm

http://lunaticoutpost.com/thread-693407.html

Still seeing jail time ..they aren't super special snowflakes like Clinton.

[Sep 28, 2016] Comey on Clinton email probe 'Don't call us weasels'

Notable quotes:
"... GOP lawmakers focused in particular on the Justice Department's decision to give a form of immunity to Clinton lawyers Cheryl Mills and Heather Samuelson to obtain computers containing emails related to the case. ..."
"... Republicans also questioned why Mills and Samuelson were allowed to attend Clinton's July 2 interview at FBI headquarters as her attorneys, given that they had been interviewed as witnesses in the email probe. ..."
"... "I don't think there's any reasonable prosecutor out there who would have allowed two immunized witnesses central to the prosecution and proving the case against her to sit in the room with the FBI interview of the subject of that investigation," said Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-Texas), a former U.S. attorney. He said those circumstances signaled that the decision not to prosecute Clinton was already made when she sat down for the interview. ..."
"... Ratcliffe said Clinton and the others should have been called to a grand jury, where no one is allowed to accompany the witness. ..."
Sep 28, 2016 | POLITICO

"You can call us wrong, but don't call us weasels. We are not weasels," Comey declared Wednesday at a House Judiciary Committee hearing. "We are honest people and whether or not you agree with the result, this was done the way you want it to be done."

... ... ...

"I would be in big trouble, and I should be in big trouble, if I did something like that," said Rep. James Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.). "There seems to be different strokes for different folks. I think there's a heavy hand coming from someplace else."

Comey insisted there is no double standard, though he said there would be serious consequences - short of criminal prosecution - if FBI personnel handled classified information as Clinton and her aides did.

... ... ...

Republicans suggested there were numerous potential targets of prosecution in the case and repeatedly questioned prosecutors' decisions to grant forms of immunity to at least five people in connection with the probe.

"You cleaned the slate before you even knew. You gave immunity to people that you were going to need to make a case if a case was to be made," said Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas).

GOP lawmakers focused in particular on the Justice Department's decision to give a form of immunity to Clinton lawyers Cheryl Mills and Heather Samuelson to obtain computers containing emails related to the case.

"Laptops don't go to the Bureau of Prisons," Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) said. "The immunity was not for the laptop, it was for Cheryl Mills."

The FBI director repeated an explanation he gave for the first time at a Senate hearing Tuesday, that the deal to get the laptops was wise because subpoenaing computers from an attorney would be complex and time consuming.

"Anytime you know you're subpoenaing a laptop from a lawyer that involved a lawyer's practice of law, you know you're getting into a big megillah," Comey said.

Republicans also questioned why Mills and Samuelson were allowed to attend Clinton's July 2 interview at FBI headquarters as her attorneys, given that they had been interviewed as witnesses in the email probe.

"I don't think there's any reasonable prosecutor out there who would have allowed two immunized witnesses central to the prosecution and proving the case against her to sit in the room with the FBI interview of the subject of that investigation," said Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-Texas), a former U.S. attorney. He said those circumstances signaled that the decision not to prosecute Clinton was already made when she sat down for the interview.

"I don't think there's any reasonable prosecutor out there who would have allowed two immunized witnesses central to the prosecution and proving the case against her to sit in the room with the FBI interview of the subject of that investigation," said Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-Texas), a former U.S. attorney. He said those circumstances signaled that the decision not to prosecute Clinton was already made when she sat down for the interview.

"If colleagues of ours believe I am lying about when I made this decision, please urge them to contact me privately so we can have a conversation about this," Comey said. "The decision was made after that because I didn't know what was going to happen during the interview. She would maybe lie in the interview in a way we could prove."

Comey also said it wasn't the FBI's role to dictate who could or couldn't act as Clinton's lawyers. "I would also urge you to tell me what tools we have as prosecutors and investigators to kick out of the interview someone that the subject says is their lawyer," the FBI chief said, while acknowledging he'd never encountered such a situation before.

Ratcliffe said Clinton and the others should have been called to a grand jury, where no one is allowed to accompany the witness.

Comey did say there was no chance of charges against Mills or Samuelson by the time of the Clinton interview.

[Sep 26, 2016] Clinton Campaign Manager Unable to Answer Questions on Hillary Coverup Operation

It was a cover up operation. No questions about that. Such instruction by a person under any investigation clearly mean tha attempt of cover up...
Notable quotes:
"... There was a document dump on Friday, that we learned from the FBI that an IT contractor managing Hillary Clinton's private email server made reference to the "Hillary coverup operation" in a work ticket. He used those words after a senior Clinton aide asked him to automatically delete emails after 60 days. This IT worker certainly sounded like he was covering something up, no? ..."
"... The FBI dumped another 189 pages of documents pertaining to Clinton's use of an unsecured private server during her time as Secretary of State online Friday, with one note about a "coverup" raising eyebrows: ..."
"... After reviewing an email dated December 11, 2014 with the subject line 'RE: 2 items for IT support,' and a December 12, 2014 work ticket referencing email retention changes and archive/email cleanup, [redacted] stated his reference in the email to ' the Hilary [sic] coverup [sic] operation ' was probably due to the requested change to a 60 day email retention policy and the comment was a joke. ..."
"... "The fact an IT staffer maintaining Clinton's secret server called a new retention policy designed to delete emails after 60 days a 'Hillary coverup operation' suggests there was a concerted effort to systematically destroy potentially incriminating information. It's no wonder that at least five individuals tied to the email scandal, including Clinton's top State Department aide and attorney Cheryl Mills, secured immunity deals from the Obama Justice Department to avoid prosecution," said Trump spokesman Jason Miller in a statement on Friday. ..."
"... Comey told the House Oversight Committee on July 7 that the FBI "did not find evidence sufficient to establish that she knew she was sending classified information beyond a reasonable doubt to meet that - the intent standard" while claiming that prosecuting Clinton for gross negligence would perpetuate a "double standard." ..."
Sep 26, 2016 | Breitbart
CNN anchor Jake Tapper confronted Hillary Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook Sunday over an IT worker handling her private email server joking in a 2014 email about a "Hillary coverup operation," with Mook dodging the question and blaming Republicans for "selectively leaking documents."

TAPPER: There was a document dump on Friday, that we learned from the FBI that an IT contractor managing Hillary Clinton's private email server made reference to the "Hillary coverup operation" in a work ticket. He used those words after a senior Clinton aide asked him to automatically delete emails after 60 days. This IT worker certainly sounded like he was covering something up, no?

MOOK: Look, Jake, I'm - first of all I'm glad you asked that question. A lot of this stuff is swirling around in the ether. It's important to pull back and look at the facts here. The FBI did a comprehensive and deep investigation into this. And at the conclusion of that, FBI Director Comey came out and said to the world that there was no case here, that they have no evidence of wrongdoing on Hillary's part.

TAPPER: So what's the "Hillary coverup operation" that the IT worker was referring to?

MOOK: Well, well, but this is - but this is - this is the perfect example of what's going on here. Republicans on the House side are selectively leaking documents for the purpose of making Hillary look bad. We've asked the FBI to release all information that they've shared with Republicans so they can get the full picture. But again, I would trust the career professionals at the FBI and the Justice Department who looked into this matter, concluded that was no case, than I would Republicans who are selectively leaking information.

The FBI dumped another 189 pages of documents pertaining to Clinton's use of an unsecured private server during her time as Secretary of State online Friday, with one note about a "coverup" raising eyebrows:

After reviewing an email dated December 11, 2014 with the subject line 'RE: 2 items for IT support,' and a December 12, 2014 work ticket referencing email retention changes and archive/email cleanup, [redacted] stated his reference in the email to ' the Hilary [sic] coverup [sic] operation ' was probably due to the requested change to a 60 day email retention policy and the comment was a joke.

The Trump campaign quickly leapt on the FBI's findings.

"The fact an IT staffer maintaining Clinton's secret server called a new retention policy designed to delete emails after 60 days a 'Hillary coverup operation' suggests there was a concerted effort to systematically destroy potentially incriminating information. It's no wonder that at least five individuals tied to the email scandal, including Clinton's top State Department aide and attorney Cheryl Mills, secured immunity deals from the Obama Justice Department to avoid prosecution," said Trump spokesman Jason Miller in a statement on Friday.

Comey told the House Oversight Committee on July 7 that the FBI "did not find evidence sufficient to establish that she knew she was sending classified information beyond a reasonable doubt to meet that - the intent standard" while claiming that prosecuting Clinton for gross negligence would perpetuate a "double standard."

[Sep 26, 2016] It was Obama who pardoned Hillary by exerting pressure on FBI

Notable quotes:
"... Were I advising Trump I would have him cite the two criminal codes the FBI decided not to pursue..... by title and section. The rest of the questioning is inconsequential in relation to the huge favor the FBI gave Mrs. Clinton. ..."
"... Might be a wrong advice. This would be more directed at Obama, then Hillary. It was Obama who pardoned Hillary by exerting pressure on FBI. ..."
Sep 26, 2016 | economistsview.typepad.com
ilsm -> Fred C. Dobbs... , Sunday, September 25, 2016 at 09:39 AM
Were I advising Trump I would have him cite the two criminal codes the FBI decided not to pursue..... by title and section. The rest of the questioning is inconsequential in relation to the huge favor the FBI gave Mrs. Clinton.
likbez -> ilsm... , -1
ilsm,

"...two criminal codes the FBI decided not to pursue....."

Might be a wrong advice. This would be more directed at Obama, then Hillary. It was Obama who pardoned Hillary by exerting pressure on FBI.

[Sep 24, 2016] Hillary Emailgate How One Twitter User Proved The Intent That The FBI Missed After Months Investigating

Sep 24, 2016 | www.zerohedge.com
Zero Hedge

Earlier this week, a twitter user named " Katica " seemingly proved the "intent" of the Hillary campaign to destroy and/or tamper with federal records by revealing the Reddit thread of Paul Combetta (aka the "Oh Shit" guy; aka "stonetear"). But what's most crazy about this story is that "Katica" was able to discover the greatest "bombshell" of the entire Hillary email scandal with just a couple of internet searches while the FBI, with unlimited access to government records, spent months "investigating" this case and missed it all . The only question now is whether the FBI "missed" this evidence because of gross incompetence or because of other motivating factors ?

Now, courtesy of an opinion piece posted on The Daily Caller , we know exactly how "Katica" pieced her "bombshell" discovery together... the folks at the FBI may want to take some notes.

Per the twitter discussion below with @RepStevenSmith , "Katica" discovered Combetta's Reddit thread on September 16th. But while she suspected that Paul Combetta and the Reddit user known as "stonetear" were, in fact, the same person, she had to prove it...

[Sep 22, 2016] The Hidden Smoking Gun the Combetta Cover-Up Clinton Email Investigation Timeline

This is a really outstanding article.
Notable quotes:
"... When Samuelson described the sorting process in her FBI interview , she said that her first step was to find all the emails to or from Clinton and the people she regularly worked with in the State Department, and put all of those emails in the "work-related" category. ..."
"... But from the Abedin emails released so far, about 200 are previously unreleased emails between her and Clinton . Anyone who looks at these can see that the vast majority, if not all, of them are work-related. ..."
"... The Abedin emails released so far are only a small percentage of all her emails that are going to be released on a monthly basis well into 2017 . It is likely that Clinton's supposed 31,000 "personal" emails contain thousands of work-related emails to and from Abedin alone. Consider that only about 15% of the 30,000 Clinton emails released so far were between her and Abedin. ..."
"... It is further worth noting that these emails were not handed over with the rest of Clinton's 30,000 work-related emails, despite clearly being work-related, but were somehow uncovered by the State Department inspector general 's office. Those very emails are good examples of the kind of material Clinton may have tried to keep secret by controlling the sorting process. ..."
"... How many more headlines like that would there be if all 31,000 deleted emails became public before the November 2016 presidential election? It's easy to imagine a political motive for Clinton wanting to keep some work-related emails secret. ..."
"... on or around December 2014 or January 2015 , Mills and Samuelson requested that [Platte River Networks (PRN) employee Paul Combetta] remove from their laptops all of the emails from the July and September 2014 exports. [Combetta] used a program called BleachBit to delete the email-related files so they could not be recovered." ..."
"... With the emails of Mills and Samuelson wiped clean, and the old version of the server wiped clean, that left just two known copies of the emails: one on the new server, and one on the back-up Datto SIRIS device connected to the new server. ..."
"... Mills was interviewed by the FBI in April 2016 . She claimed that in December 2014 , Clinton decided she no longer needed access to any of her emails older than 60 days . Note that this came not long after the State Department formally asked Clinton for all of her work-related emails, on October 28, 2014 . Mills told the FBI that she instructed Combetta to modify the email retention policy on Clinton's clintonemail.com email account to reflect this change. Emails older than 60 days would then be overwritten several times, wiping them just as effectively as BleachBit. ..."
"... So although the retention policy change sounds like a mere technicality, in fact, Clinton passed the message through Mills that she wanted all her emails from when she was secretary of state to be permanently wiped. ..."
"... Think about Clinton wanting to delete all her old "personal" emails. As a politician with a wide network of contributors and supporters, the information in them could be highly valuable for her. For instance, if a major donor contacted her, she probably would want to review their past correspondence before responding. She'd preserved these emails for nearly two years, but just when investigators started to demand to see them, she decided she didn't want ANY of them, and all traces of them should be permanently wiped. And yet we're supposed to believe the timing is just a coincidence? ..."
"... New York Times ..."
"... New York Times ..."
"... According to what Combetta later told the FBI, at some point between these two calls, he had an "Oh shit!" moment and remembered that he'd forgotten to make the requested retention policy change back in December . So, even though he told the FBI that he was aware of the emails from Mills mentioning the Congressional request to preserve all of Clinton's emails, he took action. ..."
"... the Datto backups of the server were also manually deleted during this timeframe ." ..."
"... Already, Combetta's behavior is damning. He didn't just change the data retention policy, as Mills had asked him to do, causing them to be permanently deleted 60 days later. He immediately deleted all of Clinton's emails and then wiped them for good measure, and almost certainly deleted them from the Datto back-up device too. ..."
"... To make matters worse for Combetta, on March 20, 2015 , the House Benghazi Committee sent a letter to Clinton's lawyer Kendall , asking Clinton to turn her server over to a neutral third party so it could be examined to see if any work-related emails were still on it. This was reported in the New York Times ..."
"... However, despite all these clear signs that the emails should be preserved, not only did Combetta confess in an FBI interview that "at the time he made the deletions in March 2015 , he was aware of the existence of the preservation request and the fact that it meant he should not disturb Clinton's email data on the [server]," he said that " he did not receive guidance from other PRN personnel, PRN's legal counsel or others regarding the meaning of the preservation request." So he confessed to obstruction of justice and other possible crimes, all to the apparent benefit of Clinton instead of himself! ..."
"... The FBI interviewed PRN's staff in September 2015. This almost certainly included Combetta and Bill Thornton, because they were the only two PRN employees actively managing Clinton's server. ..."
"... The fact that the FBI falsely claimed Combetta was only interviewed twice grows in importance given a recent New York Times ..."
"... Then, in May 2016 , he completely changed his story. He said that in fact he did make the deletions in late March 2015 after all, plus he'd wiped her emails with BleachBit, as described earlier. He also confessed to being aware of the Mills email with the preservation request. ..."
"... New York Times ..."
"... For the FBI to give Combetta an immunity deal and then still not learn if he had been told to delete the emails by anyone working for Clinton due to a completely legally indefensible "attorney-client privilege" excuse is beyond belief. It would make sense, however, if the FBI was actually trying to protect Clinton from prosecution instead of trying to find evidence to prosecute her. ..."
"... In one Reddit post , he asked other server managers: "I may be facing a very interesting situation where I need to strip out a VIP's (VERY VIP) email address from a bunch of archived email that I have both in a live Exchange mailbox, as well as a .pst file. Basically, they don't want the VIP's email address exposed to anyone, and want to be able to either strip out or replace the email address in the to/from fields in all of the emails we want to send out. Does anyone have experience with something like this, and/or suggestions on how this might be accomplished?" ..."
"... Recall how Clinton allegedly claimed she didn't want to keep any of her deleted emails. It looks like that wasn't true after all. It sounds exactly as if Mills or someone else working for Clinton told him to make it look like all the "personal" emails were permanently deleted due to the 60 day policy change, while actually keeping copies of emails they still wanted. ..."
"... New York Times ..."
"... First off, it's interesting that he said he did "a bunch" of "email filters and cleanup," because what has been reported by the FBI is that he only made a copy of all of Clinton's email and sent them off to be sorted in late July 2014 . That fits with his July 2014 Reddit post where he was trying to modify somebody's email address. ..."
"... For now, let us turn back to events in the fall of 2015 . In mid-August 2015 , Senator Ron Johnson (R) asked for and got a staff-level briefing from PRN about the management of Clinton's server, as part of Republican Congressional oversight of the FBI's investigation. It seems very likely that Combetta was a part of that briefing, or at least his knowledge heavily informed the briefing, because again only two PRN employees actively managed her server, and he was one of them. ..."
"... The dishonesty or ignorance of PRN in this time period can be clearly seen due to a September 12, 2015 Washington Post ..."
"... Datto expressed a willingness to cooperate. But because Datto had been subcontracted by PRN to help manage Clinton's server, they needed PRN's permission to share any information relating to that account. When PRN was first asked in early October 2015 , they gave permission. But about a week later, they changed their mind , forcing Datto to stay quiet. ..."
"... But more importantly, consider what was mentioned in an NBC News ..."
"... In an August 18, 2015 email, Combetta expressed concern that CESC, the Clinton family company, had directed PRN to reduce the length of time backups, and PRN wanted proof of this so they wouldn't be blamed. But he said in the email, "this was all phone comms [communications]." ..."
"... On September 2, 2016 , the FBI's final report of their Clinton email investigation was released (along with a summary of Clinton's FBI interview). This report revealed the late March 2015 deletions for the first time. Combetta's name was redacted, but his role, as well as his immunity deal, was revealed in the New York Times ..."
"... Chaffetz also wants an explanation from PRN how Combetta could refuse to talk to the FBI about the conference calls if the only lawyers involved in the call were Clinton's. ..."
"... PRN employees Combetta and Thornton were also given subpoenas on September 8 , ordering them to testify at a Congressional hearing on September 13, 2016 . Both of them showed up with their lawyers, but both of them pled the Fifth , leaving many questions unanswered. ..."
"... In a Senate speech on September 12, 2016 , Senator Charles Grassley (R) accused the FBI of manipulating which information about the Clinton email investigation becomes public . He said that although the FBI has taken the unusual step of releasing the FBI's final report, "its summary is misleading or inaccurate in some key details and leaves out other important facts altogether." He pointed in particular to Combetta's deletions, saying: "[T]here is key information related to that issue that is still being kept secret, even though it is unclassified. If I honor the FBI's 'instruction' not to disclose the unclassified information it provided to Congress, I cannot explain why." ..."
"... Regarding the FBI's failure to inform Congressional oversight committees of Combetta's immunity deal, Representative Trey Gowdy (R) recently commented, "If there is a reason to withhold the immunity agreement from Congress-and by extension, the people we represent-I cannot think of what it would be." ..."
"... The behavior of the FBI is even stranger. Comey was a registered Republican most of his life, and it is well known that most FBI agents are politically conservative. Be that as it may, if Comey made a decision beforehand based on some political calculation to avoid indicting Clinton no matter what the actual evidence was, that the FBI's peculiar behavior specifically relating to the Combetta deletions make much more sense. It would be an unprecedented and bold move to recommend indicting someone with Hillary Clinton's power right in the middle of her presidential election campaign. ..."
"... In this scenario, the FBI having Combetta take the fall for the deletions while making a secret immunity deal with him is a particularly clever move to prevent anyone from being indicted. Note that Combetta's confession about making the deletions came in his May 2016 FBI interview, which came after Mills' April 2016 interview in which she claimed she'd never heard of any deletions. Thus, the only way to have Combetta take the fall for the deletions without Mills getting caught clearly lying to the FBI is by dodging the issue of what was said in the March 31, 2015 conference with a nonsensical claim of "attorney-client privilege." ..."
"... I believe that criminal behavior needs to be properly investigated and prosecuted, regardless of political persuasion and regardless of the election calendar. Combetta clearly committed a crime and he even confessed to do so, given what he admitted in his last FBI interview. If he got a limited immunity deal instead of blanket immunity, which is highly likely, it still would be possible to indict and convict him based on evidence outside of his interviews. That would help explain why he recently pled the Fifth, because he's still in legal danger. ..."
"... But more importantly, who else is guilty with him? Logic and the available evidence strongly suggest that Clinton's lawyer Cheryl Mills at least knew about the deletions at the time they happened. Combetta has already confessed to criminal behavior-and yet somehow hasn't even been fired by PRN. If he didn't at least tell Mills and the others in the conference call about the deletions, there would be no logical reason to assert attorney-client privilege in the first place. Only the nonsensical assertion of this privilege is preventing the evidence coming out that should lead to Mills being charged with lying to the FBI at a minimum. And if Mills knew, can anyone seriously believe that Clinton didn't know too? ..."
Sep 22, 2016 | www.thompsontimeline.com
To understand the 2015 deletions , we have to start further back in time, in June 2013 . Clinton had ended her four-year tenure as secretary of state earlier in 2013 , and she hired the Platte River Networks (PRN) computer company to manage her private email server. This was a puzzling hire, to say the least, because PRN was based in Denver, Colorado, far from Clinton's homes in New York and Washington, DC, and the company was so small that their office was actually an apartment in an ordinary apartment building with no security alarm system. The company wasn't cleared to handle classified information, nobody in it had a security clearance, and it hadn't even handled an important out of state contract before.

PRN assigned two employees to handle the Clinton account: Paul Combetta and Bill Thornton . In late June 2013 , these two employees moved Clinton's server from her house in Chappaqua, New York, to an Equinix data center in Secaucus, New Jersey. They removed all the data from the server, moved it to a new server, and then wiped the old server clean. Both the new and old server were kept running at the data center. At the same time, PRN subcontracted Datto, Inc. , to back up the data on the new server. A Datto SIRIS S2000 was bought and connected to the server , functioning like an external hard drive to make periodic back-ups.

... ... ...

Clinton's emails get sorted

Fast forward to the middle of 2014 . The House Benghazi Committee was formed to investigate the US government's actions surrounding the 2012 terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya , and soon a handful of emails were discovered relating to this attack involving Clinton's hdr22@clintonemail.com email address. At this point, nobody outside of Clinton's inner circle of associates knew she had exclusively used that private email account for all her email communications while she was secretary of state, or that she'd hosted it on her own private email server.

The Benghazi Committee began pressing the State Department for more relevant emails from Clinton. The State Department in turn began privately pressing Clinton to turn over all her work-related emails.

Cheryl Mills (left) David Kendall (center) and Heather Samuelson (Credit: public domain)

Cheryl Mills (left) David Kendall (center) and Heather Samuelson (Credit: public domain)

Instead of turning over all her emails, Clinton decided to have them sorted into work-related and personal, and then only turn over the work-related ones. She gave this task to three of her lawyers : Cheryl Mills (Clinton's former chief of staff), David Kendall (Clinton's longtime personal lawyer), and Heather Samuelson (a relatively inexperienced State Department staffer during Clinton's tenure). It seems Samuelson did most of the sorting , even though she had no experience for this task nor any security clearance .

It was decided that over 30,000 emails were work-related, and those were turned over to the State Department on December 5, 2014 . These have all since been publicly released, though with redactions. Another over 31,000 emails were deemed personal , and Clinton kept those. They were later deleted in controversial circumstances that this essay explores in detail.

It has become increasingly clear in recent months that this sorting process was highly flawed. Clinton has said any emails that were borderline cases were given to the State Department, just to be on the safe side. But in fact, the FBI later recovered about 17,500 of Clinton's "personal" emails . It is probable no government agency has yet gone through all of these to officially determine which ones were work-related and which ones were not, but FBI Director James Comey has said that " thousands " were work-related.

We can get a glimpse of just how flawed the sorting process was because hundreds of emails from Huma Abedin have been released in recent months, as part of a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit . Abedin was Clinton's deputy chief of staff and still is one of her closest aides.

When Samuelson described the sorting process in her FBI interview , she said that her first step was to find all the emails to or from Clinton and the people she regularly worked with in the State Department, and put all of those emails in the "work-related" category.

But from the Abedin emails released so far, about 200 are previously unreleased emails between her and Clinton . Anyone who looks at these can see that the vast majority, if not all, of them are work-related. Many involve Abedin's state.gov government address, not her clintonemail.com private address, so how on Earth did Samuelson's sorting process miss those? It has even come to light recently that a small number of emails mentioning "Benghazi" have been found in the 17,500 recovered by the FBI, but Samuelson told the FBI she had specifically searched for all emails using that word.

A sample of an email between Clinton and Abedin using her state.gove address. (Credit: public domain)

A sample of an email between Clinton and Abedin using her state.gov address. (Credit: public domain)

The Abedin emails released so far are only a small percentage of all her emails that are going to be released on a monthly basis well into 2017 . It is likely that Clinton's supposed 31,000 "personal" emails contain thousands of work-related emails to and from Abedin alone. Consider that only about 15% of the 30,000 Clinton emails released so far were between her and Abedin. If the rest of her deleted emails follow the same pattern as the Abedin ones, it is highly likely that the majority, and maybe even the vast majority, of Clinton's deleted "personal" emails in fact are work-related.

... ... ...

FBI Director Comey has said he trusts that Clinton had made a sincere sorting effort, but the sheer number of work-related emails that keep getting discovered suggests otherwise. Furthermore, logic and other evidence also suggest otherwise. For instance, in home video footage from a private fundraiser in 2000 , Clinton talked about how she had deliberately avoided using email so she wouldn't leave a paper trail: "As much as I've been investigated and all of that, you know, why would I? I don't even want Why would I ever want to do email? Can you imagine?"

Practical considerations forced her to start using email a few years later. But what if her exclusive use of a private email address on her own private server was not done out of " convenience " as she claims, but so she could retain control of them, only turning over emails to FOIA requests and later government investigators that she wanted to?

Note also that in a November 2010 email exchange between Clinton and Abedin, Abedin suggested that Clinton might want to use a State Department email account due because the department computer system kept flagging emails from her private email account as spam. Clinton replied that she was open to some kind of change, but " I don't want any risk of the personal being accessible ." It is further worth noting that these emails were not handed over with the rest of Clinton's 30,000 work-related emails, despite clearly being work-related, but were somehow uncovered by the State Department inspector general 's office. Those very emails are good examples of the kind of material Clinton may have tried to keep secret by controlling the sorting process.

Consider that out of the relatively small number of deleted emails that have been made public due to the Abedin monthly releases, a handful of them have created headlines about possible conflicts of interest between Clinton's secretary of state job and the Clinton Foundation . How many more headlines like that would there be if all 31,000 deleted emails became public before the November 2016 presidential election? It's easy to imagine a political motive for Clinton wanting to keep some work-related emails secret.

... ... ...

The deletions begin

Heather Samuelson (Credit: Getty Images)

Heather Samuelson (Credit: Getty Images)

This essay will explore this possibility more later. But if it is the case that she wanted to keep those 31,000 "personal" emails out of the public eye, she had obstacles to overcome. In 2014 , PRN had managerial control of both Clinton's new and old server. Thus, in July 2014 and again in September 2014 , PRN employee Combetta had to send copies of all the emails to the laptop of Clinton lawyer Cheryl Mills, and another copy to the laptop of Clinton lawyer Heather Samuelson, to be used for the sorting process.

With the sorting done, if Clinton didn't want the public to ever see her deleted emails, you would expect all these copies of those emails to be permanently deleted, and that's exactly what happened. According to a later FBI report, " on or around December 2014 or January 2015 , Mills and Samuelson requested that [Platte River Networks (PRN) employee Paul Combetta] remove from their laptops all of the emails from the July and September 2014 exports. [Combetta] used a program called BleachBit to delete the email-related files so they could not be recovered."

The FBI report explained, "BleachBit is open source software that allows users to 'shred' files, clear Internet history, delete system and temporary files, and wipe free space on a hard drive. Free space is the area of the hard drive that can contain data that has been deleted. BleachBit's 'shred files' function claims to securely erase files by overwriting data to make the data unrecoverable." BleachBit advertises that it can "shred" files so they can never be recovered again.

With the emails of Mills and Samuelson wiped clean, and the old version of the server wiped clean, that left just two known copies of the emails: one on the new server, and one on the back-up Datto SIRIS device connected to the new server.

Mills was interviewed by the FBI in April 2016 . She claimed that in December 2014 , Clinton decided she no longer needed access to any of her emails older than 60 days . Note that this came not long after the State Department formally asked Clinton for all of her work-related emails, on October 28, 2014 . Mills told the FBI that she instructed Combetta to modify the email retention policy on Clinton's clintonemail.com email account to reflect this change. Emails older than 60 days would then be overwritten several times, wiping them just as effectively as BleachBit.

Clinton essentially said the same thing as Mills when she was interviewed by the FBI . Clinton also was interviewed by the FBI. According to the FBI summary of the interview, she claimed that after her staff sent the 30,000 work-related emails to the State Department on December 5, 2014 , "she was asked what she wanted to do with her remaining [31,000] personal emails. Clinton instructed her staff she no longer needed the emails."

So although the retention policy change sounds like a mere technicality, in fact, Clinton passed the message through Mills that she wanted all her emails from when she was secretary of state to be permanently wiped.

Think about Clinton wanting to delete all her old "personal" emails. As a politician with a wide network of contributors and supporters, the information in them could be highly valuable for her. For instance, if a major donor contacted her, she probably would want to review their past correspondence before responding. She'd preserved these emails for nearly two years, but just when investigators started to demand to see them, she decided she didn't want ANY of them, and all traces of them should be permanently wiped. And yet we're supposed to believe the timing is just a coincidence?

But there was a problem with deleting them. Combetta later claimed that he simply forgot to make this change.

More than two months passed, which meant all of Clinton's deleted emails should have been permanently wiped already. Meanwhile, the House Benghazi Committee and others were making more requests to see her emails . In January 2015 , a reporter even filed a FOIA request in court for all of her emails .

Then, on March 2, 2015 , the headline on the front page of the New York Times was a story revealing that while Clinton was secretary of state, she had exclusively used a private email address hosted on her private server, thus keeping all of her email communications secret. This became THE big story of the month, and the start of a high-profile controversy that continues until today.

On December 2, 2014 , the House Benghazi Committee had asked Clinton for all Benghazi-related emails from her personal email address. But one day after the New York Times blockbuster story, the committee sent Clinton a letter asking her to preserve ALL her emails from that address.

Then, a day after that, on March 4, 2015 , the committee issued two subpoenas to her . One subpoena ordered her to turn over all emails relating to the Benghazi attack. The committee had already received about 300 such emails from the State Department in February 2015 , but after the Times story, the committee worried that the department might not have some of her relevant emails. (That would later prove to be the case, given the small number of Benghazi emails eventually recovered by the FBI.) The second subpoena ordered her to turn over documents it requested in November 2014 but still has not received from the State Department, relating to communications between Clinton and ten senior department officials.

Cheryl Mills (Credit: Twitter)

Cheryl Mills (Credit: Twitter)

If Clinton had already deleted her emails to keep them from future investigators, these requests shouldn't have been a problem. On March 9, 2015 , Mills sent an email to PRN employees , including Combetta, to make sure they were aware of the committee's request that all of Clinton's emails be preserved. One can see this as a CYA ("cover your ass") move, since Mills would have believed all copies of Clinton's "personal" emails had been permanently deleted and wiped by this time. The Times story and the requests for copies of Clinton's emails that followed had seemingly come too late.

But that wasn't actually the case, since Combetta had forgotten to make the deletions!


Combetta deletes everything that is left

Sitting behind Combetta is co-founder of Platte River Brent Allshouse (left) and PRN attorney, Ken Eichner. (Credit: CSpan)

Sitting behind Combetta is co-founder of Platte River Brent Allshouse (left) and PRN attorney, Ken Eichner. (Credit: CSpan)

According to a later Combetta FBI interview, he claimed that on March 25, 2015, there was a conference call between PRN employees , including himself, and some members of Bill Clinton's staff. (Hillary Clinton's private server hosted the emails of Bill Clinton's staff too, and one unnamed staffer hired PRN back in 2013 .) There was another conference call between PRN and Clinton staffers on March 31, 2015 , with at least Combetta, Mills, and Clinton lawyer David Kendall taking part in that later call.

According to what Combetta later told the FBI, at some point between these two calls, he had an "Oh shit!" moment and remembered that he'd forgotten to make the requested retention policy change back in December . So, even though he told the FBI that he was aware of the emails from Mills mentioning the Congressional request to preserve all of Clinton's emails, he took action. Instead of simply making the retention policy change, which would have preserved the emails for another two months, he immediately deleted all of Clinton's emails from her server. Then he used BleachBit to permanently wipe them.

The Datto SIRIS S2000 was used for back-up services. (Credit: Datto, Inc.)

The Datto SIRIS S2000 was used for back-up services. (Credit: Datto, Inc.)

However, recall that there was a Datto SIRIS back-up device connected to the server and periodically making copies of all the data on the server. Apparently, Combetta didn't mention this to the FBI, but the FBI found "evidence of these [server] deletions and determined the Datto backups of the server were also manually deleted during this timeframe ." The Datto device sent a records log back to the Datto company whenever any changes were made, and according to a letter from Datto to the FBI that later became public, the deletions on the device were made around noon on March 31, 2015 , the same date as the second conference call. (Although the server and Datto device were in New Jersey and Combetta was working remotely from Rhode Island, he could make changes remotely, as he or other PRN employees did on other occasions.)

A recent Congressional committee letter mentioned that the other deletions were also made on or around March 31, 2015 . So it's probable they were all done at the same time by the same person: Combetta.

Already, Combetta's behavior is damning. He didn't just change the data retention policy, as Mills had asked him to do, causing them to be permanently deleted 60 days later. He immediately deleted all of Clinton's emails and then wiped them for good measure, and almost certainly deleted them from the Datto back-up device too.

The FBI's Clinton email investigation didn't formally begin until July 10, 2015 -more than two months after Combetta took those actions. However, State Department inspector general Steve Linick began investigating Clinton's email usage in April 2015 , and he could have given her an order to preserve all her documents-we don't know. Furthermore, CNN has reported that the FBI investigation actually began informally in late May 2015 , which is less than two months after the deletions. So Combetta could have prevented the State Department and/or the FBI from easily recovering all the emails in time.

To make matters worse for Combetta, on March 20, 2015 , the House Benghazi Committee sent a letter to Clinton's lawyer Kendall , asking Clinton to turn her server over to a neutral third party so it could be examined to see if any work-related emails were still on it. This was reported in the New York Times and other media outlets.

Then, on March 27, 2015 , Kendall replied to the committee in a letter that also was reported on by the Times and others that same day. Kendall wrote, "There is no basis to support the proposed third-party review of the server To avoid prolonging a discussion that would be academic, I have confirmed with the secretary's IT [information technology] support that no emails for the time period January 21, 2009 through February 1, 2013 reside on the server or on any back-up systems associated with the server."

David Kendall (Credit: Above the Law)

David Kendall (Credit: Above the Law)

When Kendall mentioned Clinton's IT support, that had to have been a reference to PRN. So what actually happened? Did Kendall or someone else working for Clinton ask Combetta and/or other PRN employees if there were any emails still on the server in the March 25, 2015 conference call, just two days before he sent his letter? Did Combetta lie in that call and say they were already deleted and then rush to delete them afterwards to cover up his mistake? Or did someone working for Clinton tell or hint that he should delete them now if they hadn't been deleted already? We don't know, because the FBI has revealed nothing about what was said in that conference call or the one that took place a week later.

However, despite all these clear signs that the emails should be preserved, not only did Combetta confess in an FBI interview that "at the time he made the deletions in March 2015 , he was aware of the existence of the preservation request and the fact that it meant he should not disturb Clinton's email data on the [server]," he said that " he did not receive guidance from other PRN personnel, PRN's legal counsel or others regarding the meaning of the preservation request." So he confessed to obstruction of justice and other possible crimes, all to the apparent benefit of Clinton instead of himself!


Investigations and cover-ups

This is perplexing enough already, but it gets stranger still, if we continue to follow the behavior of Combetta and PRN as a whole.

An inside look at the Equinix facility in Secaucus, NJ. (Credit: Chang W. Lee / New York Time)

An inside look at the Equinix facility in Secaucus, NJ. (Credit: Chang W. Lee / New York Time)

By August 2015 , the FBI's Clinton investigation was in full swing, and they began interviewing witnesses and confiscating equipment for analysis. Because the FBI never empanelled a grand jury, it didn't have subpoena power, so it had to ask Clinton for permission to seize her server. She gave that permission on August 11, 2015 , and the server was picked up from the data center in New Jersey the next day . But remember that there actually were two servers there, an old one and a new one. All the data had been wiped from the old one and moved to the new one, so the new one was the more important one to analyze. But the FBI only picked up the old one.

According to the FBI's final report, "At the time of the FBI's acquisition of the [server], Williams & Connolly [the law firm of Clinton's personal lawyer David Kendall] did not advise the US government of the existence of the additional equipment associated with the [old server], or that Clinton's clintonemail.com emails had been migrated to the successor [server] remaining at [the] Equinix [data center]. The FBI's subsequent investigation identified this additional equipment and revealed the email migration." As a result, the FBI finally picked up the new server on October 3, 2015 .

It was bad enough that Clinton's lawyer wasn't forthcoming about this, especially since Clinton and her staff had switched to using new email accounts located on a different server with a different domain name in late 2014 , so the servers in question weren't urgently needed anymore. But who else could have told the FBI about the data getting transferred to the new server? PRN.

A snippet from the invoice published by Complete Colorado on October 19, 2015. (Credit: Todd Shepherd / Complete Colorado) (Used with express permission from CompleteColorado.com. Do not duplicate or republish.)

The FBI interviewed PRN's staff in September 2015. This almost certainly included Combetta and Bill Thornton, because they were the only two PRN employees actively managing Clinton's server.

It's particularly important to know if Combetta was interviewed at this time. The FBI's final report clearly stated that he was interviewed twice, in February 2016 and May 2016 , and repeatedly referred to what was said in his "first interview" and "second interview." However, we luckily know that he was interviewed in September 2015 as well, because of a PRN invoice billed to Clinton Executive Service Corp. (CESC), a Clinton family company, that was made public later in 2015 . The invoice made clear that Combetta, who was working remotely from Rhode Island, flew to Colorado on September 14, 2015, and then "federal interviews" took place on September 15 . Combetta's rental car, hotel, and return airfare costs were itemized as well. As this essay later makes clear, PRN was refusing to cooperate with anyone else in the US government but the FBI by this time, so "federal interviews" can only mean the FBI.

Bryan Pagliano (Credit: public domain)

Bryan Pagliano (Credit: public domain)

The fact that the FBI falsely claimed Combetta was only interviewed twice grows in importance given a recent New York Times report that the Justice Department gave Combetta some form of legal immunity .

One other person in the investigation, Bryan Pagliano, was given immunity as well. But his immunity deal was leaked to the media and had been widely reported on since March 2016 . By contrast, Combetta's immunity wasn't even mentioned in the FBI's final report, and members of Congress were upset to first read about it in the Times , because they had never been told about it either.

The mystery of this situation deepens when one looks at the FBI report regarding what Combetta said in his February 2016 and May 2016 interviews. In February 2016 , he claimed that he remembered in late March 2015 that he forgot to make the change to the email retention policy on Clinton's server, but that was it. He claimed he never did make any deletions. He also claimed that he was unaware of the March 9, 2015 email from Mills warning of the Congressional request to preserve all of Clinton's emails.

Paul Combetta (Credit: public domain)

Paul Combetta (Credit: public domain)

Then, in May 2016 , he completely changed his story. He said that in fact he did make the deletions in late March 2015 after all, plus he'd wiped her emails with BleachBit, as described earlier. He also confessed to being aware of the Mills email with the preservation request.

It still hasn't been reported when Combetta's immunity deal was made. However, it seems probable that this took place between his February 2016 and May 2016 interviews, causing the drastic change in his account. Yet, it looks that he still hasn't been fully honest or forthcoming. Note that he didn't confess to the deletion of data on the Datto back-up device, even though it took place at the same time as the other deletions. The FBI learned that on their own by analyzing the device.


Attorney-client privilege?!

More crucially, we know that Combetta has not revealed what took place in the second conference call between PRN and Clinton employees. Here is all the FBI's final report has to say about that: "Investigation identified a PRN work ticket, which referenced a conference call among PRN, Kendall, and Mills on March 31, 2015. PRN's attorney advised [Combetta] not to comment on the conversation with Kendall, based upon the assertion of the attorney-client privilege ."

Paul Combetta (left) Ken Eichner (right) (Credit: CSpan)

Sitting behind Paul Combetta at the House Oversight Committee hearing on September 13, 2016, is Platte River Networks attorney Ken Eichner. (Credit: CSpan)

This is extremely bizarre. What "attorney-client privilege"?! That would only apply for communications between Combetta and his lawyer or lawyers. It's clear that Combetta's lawyer isn't Mills or Kendall. The New York Times article about the immunity deal made a passing reference to his lawyer, and, when Combetta showed up for a Congressional hearing on September 12 , he was accompanied by a lawyer who photographs from the hearing make clear is Ken Eichner, who has been the legal counsel for PRN as a whole regarding Clinton's server.

Even if Combetta's lawyer Eichner was participating in the call, there is no way that should protect Combetta from having to tell what he said to Clinton employees like Mills or Kendall. If that's how the law works, criminals could simply always travel with a lawyer and then claim anything they do or say with the lawyer present is inadmissible as evidence due to attorney-client privilege. It's absurd.

For the FBI to give Combetta an immunity deal and then still not learn if he had been told to delete the emails by anyone working for Clinton due to a completely legally indefensible "attorney-client privilege" excuse is beyond belief. It would make sense, however, if the FBI was actually trying to protect Clinton from prosecution instead of trying to find evidence to prosecute her.


Combetta's Reddit posts

A side-by-side shot of Combetta at the House Oversight Committee hearing (left) and a captured shot of Combetta as Stonetear (right). (Credit: CSpan and public domain)

A photo comparison of Combetta at the House Oversight Committee hearing (left) and a captured shot of Combetta as stonetear (right). (Credit: CSpan and public domain)

Furthermore, how much can Combetta be trusted, even in an FBI interview? It has recently come to light that he made Reddit posts under the username "stonetear." There can be no doubt this was him, because the details match perfectly, including him signing a post "Paul," having another social media account for a Paul Combetta with the username "stonetear," having a combetta.com website mentioning his "stonetear" alias, and even posting a photo of "stonetear" that matches other known photos of Combetta.

In one Reddit post , he asked other server managers: "I may be facing a very interesting situation where I need to strip out a VIP's (VERY VIP) email address from a bunch of archived email that I have both in a live Exchange mailbox, as well as a .pst file. Basically, they don't want the VIP's email address exposed to anyone, and want to be able to either strip out or replace the email address in the to/from fields in all of the emails we want to send out. Does anyone have experience with something like this, and/or suggestions on how this might be accomplished?"

The date of the post- July 24, 2014 -is very significant, because that was just one day after Combetta sent CESE (the Clinton family company) DVDs containing some of Clinton's emails , so Clinton's lawyers could start the sorting process. Also on July 23, 2014 , an unnamed PRN employee sent Samuelson and Mills the same emails electronically directly to their laptops.

A response captured in the Reddit chat warning Combetta that what he wants to do is illegal. (Credit: Reddit)

A response captured in the Reddit chat warning stonetear aka Combetta that what he wants to do could result in major legal issues. (Credit: Reddit)

Popular software made by companies like Microsoft have tried to make it impossible for people to change email records, so people facing legal trouble can't tamper with emails after they've been sent. Thus, when Combetta posed his problem at Reddit, other Reddit users told him that what he wanted to do "could result in major legal issues." But that didn't deter him, and he kept asking for various ways to get it accomplished anyway.

It isn't clear why Clinton would have wanted her email address removed from all her emails, since her exact address had already been exposed in the media back in March 2013 by the hacker known as Guccifer. One Gawker reporter even used it to email Clinton on March 20, 2013 : "[W] ere your emails to and from the hdr22@clintonemail.com account archived according to the provisions of the President Records Act and Freedom of Information Act?" (Clinton never replied, maybe because it's clear in hindsight that an honest answer would have been "no.") But the fact that Combetta was willing to at least try to do this raises questions, especially his seeming willingness to do something illegal for his "VIP" customer Hillary Clinton.

Combetta made another important Reddit post a few months later:

"Hello- I have a client who wants to push out a 60 day email retention policy for certain users. However, they also want these users to have a 'Save Folder' in their Exchange folder list where the users can drop items that they want to hang onto longer than the 60 day window. All email in any other folder in the mailbox should purge anything older than 60 days (should not apply to calendar or contact items of course). How would I go about this? Some combination of retention and managed folder policy?"

Another sample captured of Combetta as 'stonetear' asking Reddit users for help. (Credit: Reddit)

Another question was captured of 'stonetear' aka Combetta asking Reddit users for technical help. (Credit: Reddit)

Again, the timing is telling, because this post was made on December 10, 2014 . Recall that December 2014 (or January 2015 ) was when he deleted and then wiped Clinton's emails from the laptops of Mills and Samuelson. December also was the month that Mills asked him to change the retention policy on Clinton's server to 60 days , which is precisely the issue he was asking about in his Reddit post.

A captured shot of Combetta's 'stonetear' GMail account with picture included. (Credit: public domain)

A captured shot of Combetta's 'stonetear' Gmail account with picture included. (Credit: public domain)

Recall how Clinton allegedly claimed she didn't want to keep any of her deleted emails. It looks like that wasn't true after all. It sounds exactly as if Mills or someone else working for Clinton told him to make it look like all the "personal" emails were permanently deleted due to the 60 day policy change, while actually keeping copies of emails they still wanted.

Looking at Combetta's two Reddit posts detailed above, there are only two possibilities. One is that Combetta failed to disclose crucial information to the FBI, despite his immunity deal. The second is that he did, but the FBI didn't mention it in its final report. Either way, it's already clear that the FBI has failed to present the full story of Combetta's actions to the public. And how much of what Combetta has said can be trusted, even in his most recent and supposedly most forthcoming FBI interview?

David DeCamillis (Credit: Twitter)

David DeCamillis (Credit: Twitter)

Remarkably, there is a hint that Combetta was being dishonest even before his late March 2015 deletions. On March 3, 2015 , one day after the front-page New York Times story revealing Clinton's use of a private server, PRN's vice president of sales David DeCamillis sent an email to some or all of the other PRN employees. The email has only been paraphrased in news reports so far, but he was already wondering what Clinton emails the company might be asked to turn over .

Combetta replied to the email , "I've done quite a bit already in the last few months related to this. Her [Clinton's] team had me do a bunch of exports and email filters and cleanup to provide a .pst [personal storage file] of all of HRC's [Hillary Rodham Clinton's] emails to/from any .gov addresses. I billed probably close to 10 hours in on-call tickets with CESC related to it :)."

First off, it's interesting that he said he did "a bunch" of "email filters and cleanup," because what has been reported by the FBI is that he only made a copy of all of Clinton's email and sent them off to be sorted in late July 2014 . That fits with his July 2014 Reddit post where he was trying to modify somebody's email address.

But also, assuming that there aren't important parts to his email that haven't been mentioned by the media, consider what he didn't say. The topic was possibly turning over Clinton's emails, and yet by this time Combetta had already deleted and wiped all of Clinton's emails from the laptops of two Clinton lawyers and been asked to change the email retention policy on Clinton's server so that all her emails would be permanently deleted there too, and yet he didn't bother to mention this to anyone else at PRN. Why?

We can only speculate based on the limited amount of information made public so far. But it seems as if Combetta was covering up for Clinton and/or the people working for her even BEFORE he made his late March 2015 deletions!


Who knows about the deletions, and how?

Senator Ron Johnson (Credit: John Shinkle / Politico)

Senator Ron Johnson (Credit: John Shinkle / Politico)

For now, let us turn back to events in the fall of 2015 . In mid-August 2015 , Senator Ron Johnson (R) asked for and got a staff-level briefing from PRN about the management of Clinton's server, as part of Republican Congressional oversight of the FBI's investigation. It seems very likely that Combetta was a part of that briefing, or at least his knowledge heavily informed the briefing, because again only two PRN employees actively managed her server, and he was one of them.

Regardless of whether he was there or not, it is clear that PRN was not honest in the briefing. Almost nothing is publicly known about the briefing except that it took place. However, from questions Johnson asked PRN in later letters, one can see that he knew nothing about the March 2015 deletions by Combetta. In fact, just like the FBI, there is no indication he knew anything about the transfer of the data from the old server to the new in that time period, which would be a basic fact in any such briefing.

Andy Boian (Credit: public domain)

The dishonesty or ignorance of PRN in this time period can be clearly seen due to a September 12, 2015 Washington Post article. In it, PRN spokesperson Andy Boian said, " Platte River has no knowledge of the server being wiped ." He added, "All the information we have is that the server wasn't wiped." We now know that not only was this untrue, but a PRN employee did the wiping!

This leads to two possibilities. One is that Combetta lied to his PRN bosses, so in September 2015 nobody else in PRN knew about the deletions he'd made. The other is that additional people at PRN knew, but they joined in a cover-up.

At this point, it's impossible to know which of these is true, but one of them must be. PRN employees created work tickets and other documentary evidence of the work they made, so one would think the company leadership would have quickly learned about the deletions if they did any examination of their managerial actions to prepare for investigative briefings and interviews.

But either way, PRN as a whole began acting as if there was something to hide. Although the company agreed to the briefing of Congressional staffers in mid-August 2015 , when Senator Johnson wanted to follow this up with interviews of individual PRN employees in early September, PRN said no . When Congressional committees began asking PRN for documents, they also said no, and kept saying no. Recently, as we shall see later, they've even defied a Congressional subpoena for documents.

Austin McChord, founder and CEO of Datto, Inc. (Credit: Erik Traufmann / Hearst Connecticut Media)

Austin McChord, founder and CEO of Datto, Inc. (Credit: Erik Traufmann / Hearst Connecticut Media)

At the same time Congressional committees began asking PRN for documents and interviews, they made those requests to Datto as well.

Datto expressed a willingness to cooperate. But because Datto had been subcontracted by PRN to help manage Clinton's server, they needed PRN's permission to share any information relating to that account. When PRN was first asked in early October 2015 , they gave permission. But about a week later, they changed their mind , forcing Datto to stay quiet.

To make matters worse, in early November 2015 , PRN spokesperson Andy Boian gave a completely bogus public excuse about this, saying that PRN and Datto had mutually agreed it was more convenient for investigators to deal with just one company. Datto immediately complained in a letter sent to PRN and Senator Johnson that no such discussion or agreement between PRN and Datto had ever taken place.

What is PRN hiding?


The Datto cloud mystery

There is another strange twist to Datto's involvement. Back in June 2013 when Datto was first subcontracted to help with backing up the server data, the Clinton family company CESC made explicit that they didn't want any of the data to be stored remotely . But due to some snafu or miscommunication, it turns out that in addition to local back-ups being stored on the Datto device connected to the server, Datto had been making periodic copies of the server data the whole time in the "cloud!" That means back-up copies of the data were being transferred over the Internet and stored remotely, probably on other servers controlled by Datto.

Co-founders of PRN are Brent Allshouse (left) and Treve Suazo (right) (Credit: PRN)

Co-founders of PRN are Brent Allshouse (left) and Treve Suazo (right) (Credit: PRN)

PRN only discovered this in early August 2015 , around the time the roles of PRN and Datto had with the server began to be made public. PRN contacted Datto, told them to stop doing this, put all the data on a thumb drive, send it to them, and then permanently wipe their remote copies of the server data.

It is unclear what happened after that. The FBI's final report mentions a Datto back-up made on June 29, 2013 , just after all the data had been moved from the old server to the new sever with the back-up, had been useful to investigators and allowed them to find some Clinton emails dating all the way back to the first two months of her secretary of state tenure. However, it isn't clear if this is due to the local Datto SIRIS device or the accidental Datto cloud back-up. Congressional committee letters show that they don't know either and have been trying to find out.

Adding to the mystery, one would think that if Datto was making periodic back-ups either or both ways, the FBI would have been able to recover all of Clinton's over 31,000 deleted emails and not just 17,000 of them. Consider that when PRN employees sent Clinton's lawyers all of Clinton's emails to be sorted in July and September 2014 , they simply copied what was on the server at the time, which presumably was the same amount of emails from years earlier than had been there in June 2013 , and thus backed up by Datto many times.

It's likely there are more twists to the cloud back-up story that have yet to be revealed.


What did Clinton and her aides know about the deletions?

Meanwhile, let's consider what Clinton and her aides may have known and when they knew it. When Mills was interviewed by the FBI in April 2016 , according to the FBI, "Mills stated she was unaware that [Combetta] had conducted these deletions and modifications in March 2015 ." Then, when Clinton was interviewed by the FBI in July 2016 , "Clinton stated she was unaware of the March 2015 email deletions by PRN."

This is pretty hard to believe. Mills was and still is one of Clinton's lawyers, and even attended Clinton's FBI interview. So why wouldn't she have mentioned the deletions to Clinton between April and July 2016 , after she learned about them from the FBI's questions to her? One would think Clinton would have been extremely curious to know anything about the FBI's possible recovery of her deleted emails.

Clinton making a joking wipe gesture while speaking at a town hall on August 18, 2015, in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Credit: John Locher / The Associated Press)

Clinton making a joking wipe gesture while speaking at a town hall on August 18, 2015, in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Credit: John Locher / The Associated Press)

But more importantly, consider what was mentioned in an NBC News report on August 19, 2015 . Clinton's campaign acknowledged "that there was an attempt to wipe [Clinton's] server before it was turned over last week to the FBI. But two sources with direct knowledge of the investigation told NBC News that the [FBI] may be able to recover at least some data."

Is it plausible that people within Clinton's campaign knew this, and yet neither Mills nor Clinton did? How could that be? Note that just one day before the NBC News report, Clinton had been directly asked if her server had been wiped. She dodged the question by making the joke , " What-like with a cloth, or something?" Then she said she didn't "know how it works digitally at all." Despite the controversy at the time about the cloth joke, her spokesperson claimed one month later, "I don't know what 'wiped' means."

It's highly likely the issue had to have been discussed with Clinton at the time, but there was a conscious effort not to have her admit to knowing anything, due to the on-going FBI investigation.

But more crucially, how could anyone at all working for Clinton know about the deletions as far back as August 2015 ? Recall that this was within days of PRN giving a briefing to Congressional staffers and not telling them, and several weeks prior to a PRN public comment that there was no evidence the server had been wiped.

Moreover, we have no evidence that the FBI knew about the deletions yet. Datto conducted an analysis of its device that had been attached to Clinton's new server, and in an October 23, 2015 email, told the FBI for the first time that deletions had taken place on that device on March 31, 2015 . Keep in mind that even in his February 2016 FBI interview, Combetta claimed that no deletions had taken place in that time frame. Does it make sense that he would have said that if he had reason to believe that PRN had been talking to Clinton's staff about it in the months before? (None of the interviews in the FBI"s investigations were done under oath, but lying to the FBI is a felony with a maximum five-year prison sentence.)

A sample of the letter sent to the FBI by Datto attorney, Steven Cash on October 23, 2015. (Credit: House Science Committee)

A sample of the email sent to the FBI by Datto attorney, Steven Cash on October 23, 2015. (Credit: House Science Committee)

So, again, how could Clinton's campaign know about the wiping in August 2015 ? The logical answer is that it had been discussed in the conference call on March 31, 2015 , that took place within hours of the deletions.

Paul Combetta (Credit: public domain)

Paul Combetta (Credit: public domain)

Perhaps Mills, Kendall, or someone else working for Clinton told Combetta to make the deletions, possibly during the first conference call on March 25, 2015 . If that is the case, there should be obstruction of justice charges brought against anyone involved. Or maybe Combetta did that on his own to cover his earlier mistake and then mentioned what he'd done in the second conference call. If either scenario is true, Mills should be charged with lying to the FBI for claiming in her FBI interview that she knew nothing about any of this. Clinton might be charged for the same if it could be proved what she knew and when.


"Shady shit" and "Hillary's cover-up operation"

But there's still more to this strange story. Somehow by October 5, 2015 , Senator Johnson got hold of a curious email exchange between Combetta and Thornton , and he mentioned it in a letter to PRN that got leaked to the public the next day. (Recall that Bill Thornton is the other PRN employee who actively managed Clinton's server.)

Just as the email retention policy on the Clinton server was changed on the orders of people working for Clinton, so was the retention policy on the Datto device connected to the server, in the same time period.

In an August 18, 2015 email, Combetta expressed concern that CESC, the Clinton family company, had directed PRN to reduce the length of time backups, and PRN wanted proof of this so they wouldn't be blamed. But he said in the email, "this was all phone comms [communications]."

Paul Combetta (left) Bill Thornton (right) (Credit: AP)

Paul Combetta (left) Bill Thornton (right) (Credit: The Associated Press)

The next day , there was another email, this one written by Thornton to Combetta and possibly others in PRN . The email has the subject heading "CESC Datto." Thornton wrote: "Any chance you found an old email with their directive to cut the backup back in Oct-Feb. I know they had you cut it once in Oct-Nov, then again to 30 days in Feb-ish." (Presumably this refers to October 2014 through February 2015 .)

Thornton continued: "If we had that email, then we're golden. [ ] Wondering how we can sneak an email in now after the fact asking them when they told us to cut the backups and have them confirm it for our records. Starting to think this whole thing really is covering up some shady shit. I just think if we have it in writing that they [CESC] told us to cut the backups, and we can go public with our statement saying we have had backups since day one, then we were told to trim to 30 days, it would make us look a WHOLE LOT better."

Combetta replied: "I'll look again, but I'm almost positive we don't have anything about the 60 day cut. [ ] It's up to lawyer crap now, so just sit back and enjoy the silly headlines."

As an aside, it's curious that Combetta made some unsolicited additional comments in that same email that was supportive of Clinton's position in the email controversy: "It wasn't the law to be required to use government email servers at the State Department, believe it or not. Colin Powell used an AOL address for communicating with his staff, believe it or not."

If we take this email exchange at face value, then it appears that Clinton employees requested an email retention policy change that would result in more deletion of data on the Datto back-up device in the October to November 2014 time range. Keep in mind that the State Department formally asked Clinton for all of her work-related emails , on October 28, 2014 , after informally asking starting in July 2014 . Then, around February 2015 , Clinton employees asked for another change that would have resulted in more deletions. Plus, they did this on the phone, leaving no paper trail. Is it any wonder that Thornton wrote, "Starting to think this whole thing really is covering up some shady shit?"

Details are lacking, but roughly around this time period, one unnamed PRN employee made a joke that they were "Hillary's cover-up operation ." That may have been much more accurate than they realized.


The FBI speaks up, only raising more questions

News about PRN went quiet for the first half of 2016 . Congressional committees kept asking PRN and Datto for more information (including another request for interviews in January 2016 ), and PRN kept saying no as well as not giving Datto permission to respond.

James Comey (Credit: Fox News)

James Comey (Credit: Fox News)

Then, on July 5, 2016 , FBI Director James Comey gave a surprise public speech in which he announced he wouldn't recommend any criminal charges against Clinton or anyone else in the investigation. In the course of his speech, he said it was "likely" that some emails may have disappeared forever because Clinton's lawyers "deleted all emails they did not return to State, and the lawyers cleaned their devices in such a way as to preclude complete forensic recovery." But he said that after interviews and technical examination, "we believe our investigation has been sufficient to give us reasonable confidence there was no intentional misconduct in connection with that sorting effort."

Trey Gowdy (Credit: Brendan Smialowski / Getty Images)

Trey Gowdy (Credit: Brendan Smialowski / Getty Images)

Two days later, on July 7, 2016 , Comey had to explain his decision in front of a Congressional committee. During that hearing, he was asked by Representative Trey Gowdy (R), "Secretary Clinton said neither she nor anyone else deleted work-related emails from her personal account. Was that true?"

Comey replied: "That's a harder one to answer. We found traces of work-related emails in-on devices or in slack space. Whether they were deleted or whether when the server was changed out, something happened to them. There's no doubt that the work-related emails were removed electronically from the email system."

Consider that response. By the time Comey made those comments, the FBI's final report had already been finished, the report that detailed Combetta's confession of deliberately deleting and then wiping all of Clinton's emails from her server. Comey was explicitly asked if "anyone" had made such deletions, and yet he said he wasn't sure. Comey should be investigated for lying to Congress! Had he revealed even the rough outlines of Combetta's late March 2015 deletions in his July 5, 2016 public speech or his Congressional testimony two days later , it would have significantly changed the public perception of the results of the FBI investigation. That also would have allowed Congressional committees to start focusing on this two months earlier than they did, enabling them to uncover more in the limited time before the November presidential election.

The SECNAP Logo (Credit: SECNAP)

Despite the fact that the Combetta deletions were still unknown, Congressional committees began putting increasing pressure on PRN anyway. On July 12, 2016 , two committees jointly wrote a letter to PRN , threatening subpoenas if they still refused to cooperate. The letter listed seven PRN employees they wanted to interview, including Combetta and Thornton. Similar letters went out to Datto and SECNAP. (SECNAP was subcontracted by PRN to carry out threat monitoring of the network connected to Clinton's server.)

On August 22, 2016 , after all three companies still refused to cooperate, Representative Lamar Smith (R), chair of the Committee on Science, Space and Technology, issued subpoenas for PRN, Datto, and SECNAP .

On September 2, 2016 , the FBI's final report of their Clinton email investigation was released (along with a summary of Clinton's FBI interview). This report revealed the late March 2015 deletions for the first time. Combetta's name was redacted, but his role, as well as his immunity deal, was revealed in the New York Times article published a few days later.


Congressional investigators fight back

160918ChanningPhillipspublic

Channing Phillips (Credit: public domain)

Since the report has been released, Congressional Republicans have stepped up their efforts to get answers about the Combetta mystery, using the powers of the committees they control. On September 6, 2016 , Representative Jason Chaffetz (R), chair of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, wrote a letter to Channing Phillips , the US attorney for the District of Columbia. He asked the Justice Department to "investigate and determine whether Secretary Clinton or her employees and contractors violated statutes that prohibit destruction of records, obstruction of congressional inquiries, and concealment or cover up of evidence material to a congressional investigation." Clearly, this relates to the Combetta deletions.

House Oversight Committee Chair Representative Jason Chaffetz. (Credit: Cliff Owen / The Associated Press)

Representative Jason Chaffetz. (Credit: Cliff Owen / The Associated Press)

On the same day , Chaffetz sent a letter to PRN warning that Combetta could face federal charges for deleting and wiping Clinton's emails in late March 2015 , due to the Congressional request to preserve them earlier in the month that he admitted he was aware of. Chaffetz also wants an explanation from PRN how Combetta could refuse to talk to the FBI about the conference calls if the only lawyers involved in the call were Clinton's.

Chaffetz serves the FBI a subpoena during a House Oversight and Government Affairs Committee hearing on September 9, 2016. (Credit: ABC News)

Chaffetz serves the FBI a subpoena during a House Oversight and Government Affairs Committee hearing on September 9, 2016. (Credit: ABC News)

On September 9 , Chaffetz served the FBI a subpoena for all the unredacted interviews from the FBI's Clinton investigation, especially those of Combetta and the other PRN employees. This came after an FBI official testifying at a hearing remarkably suggested that Chaffetz should file a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to get the documents, just like any private citizen can.

On September 8, 2016 , Congressional committees served the subpoenas they'd threatened in August. PRN, Datto, and SECNAP were given until the end of September 12 to finally turn over the documents the committees had been requesting for year. Datto complied and turned over the documents in time. However, PRN and SECNAP did not.

Representative Lamar Smith (Credit: public domain)

Representative Lamar Smith (Credit: public domain)

The next day, September 13 , Representative Lamar Smith (R) said , "just this morning SECNAP's [legal] counsel confirmed to my staff that the Clinton's private LLC [Clinton Executive Service Corp.] is actively engaged in directing their obstructionist responses to Congressional subpoenas."

PRN employees Combetta and Thornton were also given subpoenas on September 8 , ordering them to testify at a Congressional hearing on September 13, 2016 . Both of them showed up with their lawyers, but both of them pled the Fifth , leaving many questions unanswered.


An FBI cover-up?

In a Senate speech on September 12, 2016 , Senator Charles Grassley (R) accused the FBI of manipulating which information about the Clinton email investigation becomes public . He said that although the FBI has taken the unusual step of releasing the FBI's final report, "its summary is misleading or inaccurate in some key details and leaves out other important facts altogether." He pointed in particular to Combetta's deletions, saying: "[T]here is key information related to that issue that is still being kept secret, even though it is unclassified. If I honor the FBI's 'instruction' not to disclose the unclassified information it provided to Congress, I cannot explain why."

Senator Charles Grassley takes to the Senate floor on September 12, 2016. (Credit: CSpan))

Senator Charles Grassley takes to the Senate floor on September 12, 2016. (Credit: CSpan)

He also said there are dozens of completely unclassified witness reports, but even some of his Congressional staffers can't see them "because the FBI improperly bundled [them] with a small amount of classified information, and told the Senate to treat it all as if it were classified." The normal procedure is for documents to have the classified portions marked. Then the unclassified portions can be released. But in defiance of regulations and a clear executive order on how such material should be handled, "the FBI has 'instructed' the Senate office that handles classified information not to separate the unclassified information." As a result, Grassley claims: "Inaccuracies are spreading because of the FBI's selective release. For example, the FBI's recently released summary memo may be contradicted by other unclassified interview summaries that are being kept locked away from the public."

He said he has been fighting the FBI on this, but without success so far, as the FBI isn't even replying to his letters.

Thus, it seems that Comey failing to mention anything about the Combetta deletions in the July 7, 2016 Congressional hearing, even when directly asked about it, was no accident. Having the FBI report claim that Combetta was only interviewed twice when there is clear evidence of three interviews also fits a pattern of concealment related to the deletions.

James Comey testifies to the House Benghazi Committee on July 7, 2016. (Credit: Jack Gruber / USA Today)

James Comey testifies to the House Benghazi Committee on July 7, 2016. (Credit: Jack Gruber / USA Today)

Regarding the FBI's failure to inform Congressional oversight committees of Combetta's immunity deal, Representative Trey Gowdy (R) recently commented, "If there is a reason to withhold the immunity agreement from Congress-and by extension, the people we represent-I cannot think of what it would be."

Gowdy, who is a former federal prosecutor, also said on September 9 that there are two types of immunity Combetta could have received : use and transactional. "If the FBI and the Department of Justice gave this witness transactional immunity, it is tantamount to giving the triggerman immunity in a robbery case." He added that he is "stunned" because "It looks like they gave immunity to the very person you would most want to prosecute."

This is as much as we know so far, but surely the story won't stop there. PRN has been served a new subpoena. It is likely the requested documents will be seized from them soon if they continue to resist.


Taking the fall and running out the clock

But why does PRN resist so much? Computer companies often resist sharing information with the government so their reputation with their clients won't be harmed. But defying a subpoena when there clearly are legitimate questions to be answered goes way beyond what companies normally do and threatens PRN's reputation in a different way. Could it be that PRN-an inexplicable choice to manage Clinton's server-was chosen precisely because whatever Clinton aide hired them had reason to believe they would be loyal if a problem like this arose?

David DeCamillis (Credit: public domain)

David DeCamillis (Credit: public domain)

There is some anecdotal evidence to support this. It has been reported that PRN has ties to prominent Democrats . For instance, the company's vice president of sales David DeCamillis is said to be a prominent supporter of Democratic politicians, and once offered to let Senator Joe Biden (D) stay in his house in 2008 , not long before Biden became Obama's vice president. The company also has done work for John Hickenlooper, the Democratic governor of Colorado. And recall the email in which Combetta brought up points to defend Clinton in her email controversy, even though the email exchange was on a different topic.

The behavior of the FBI is even stranger. Comey was a registered Republican most of his life, and it is well known that most FBI agents are politically conservative. Be that as it may, if Comey made a decision beforehand based on some political calculation to avoid indicting Clinton no matter what the actual evidence was, that the FBI's peculiar behavior specifically relating to the Combetta deletions make much more sense. It would be an unprecedented and bold move to recommend indicting someone with Hillary Clinton's power right in the middle of her presidential election campaign.

It's naive to think that political factors don't play a role, on both sides. Consider that virtually every Democratic politician has been supportive of Clinton in her email controversy, or at least silent about it, while virtually every Republican has been critical of her about it or silent. Comey was appointed by Obama, and if the odds makers are right and Clinton wins in November , Comey will continue to be the FBI director under President Clinton. (Comey was appointed to a ten-year term, but Congress needs to vote to reappoint him after the election.) How could that not affect his thinking?

Comey could be trying to run out the clock, first delaying the revelations of the Combetta's deletions as much as possible, then releasing only selected facts to diminish the attention on the story.

In this scenario, the FBI having Combetta take the fall for the deletions while making a secret immunity deal with him is a particularly clever move to prevent anyone from being indicted. Note that Combetta's confession about making the deletions came in his May 2016 FBI interview, which came after Mills' April 2016 interview in which she claimed she'd never heard of any deletions. Thus, the only way to have Combetta take the fall for the deletions without Mills getting caught clearly lying to the FBI is by dodging the issue of what was said in the March 31, 2015 conference with a nonsensical claim of "attorney-client privilege."

Unfortunately, if that is Comey's plan, it looks like it's working. Since the FBI's final report came out on September 2, 2016 , the mainstream media has largely failed to grasp the significance of Combetta and his deletions, focusing on far less important matters instead, such as the destruction of a couple of Clinton's BlackBerry devices with hammers-which actually was better than not destroying them and possibly letting them fall into the wrong hands.

The House Benghazi Committee in session in 2015. (Credit: C-SPAN3)

The House Benghazi Committee in session in 2015. (Credit: C-SPAN3)

What happens next appears to largely be in the hands of Congressional Republicans, who no doubt will keep pushing to find out more, if only to politically hurt Clinton before the election. But it's also in the hands of you, the members of the general public. If enough people pay attention, then it will be impossible to sweep this controversy under the rug.

I believe that criminal behavior needs to be properly investigated and prosecuted, regardless of political persuasion and regardless of the election calendar. Combetta clearly committed a crime and he even confessed to do so, given what he admitted in his last FBI interview. If he got a limited immunity deal instead of blanket immunity, which is highly likely, it still would be possible to indict and convict him based on evidence outside of his interviews. That would help explain why he recently pled the Fifth, because he's still in legal danger.

Paul Combetta and Bill Thornton plead the Fifth on September 13, 2016. (Credit: CSpan)

Paul Combetta and Bill Thornton plead the Fifth on September 13, 2016. (Credit: CSpan)

But more importantly, who else is guilty with him? Logic and the available evidence strongly suggest that Clinton's lawyer Cheryl Mills at least knew about the deletions at the time they happened. Combetta has already confessed to criminal behavior-and yet somehow hasn't even been fired by PRN. If he didn't at least tell Mills and the others in the conference call about the deletions, there would be no logical reason to assert attorney-client privilege in the first place. Only the nonsensical assertion of this privilege is preventing the evidence coming out that should lead to Mills being charged with lying to the FBI at a minimum. And if Mills knew, can anyone seriously believe that Clinton didn't know too?

As the saying goes, "it's not the crime, it's the cover up." This is an important story, and not just election season mudslinging. The public needs to know what really happened.

Note to Readers!

If you found this essay informative, check out the Clinton email investigation timeline , as well as the Clinton Foundation timeline , written and updated daily by the same author. Stay up to date with the newest timeline entries by checking out our Recently Added Entries page , and join our Facebook group for intelligent discussions about the latest breaking news throughout the day.

[Sep 16, 2016] Whats The FBI Hiding That Triggered A Congressional Subpoena by Andrew Napolitano

Notable quotes:
"... Because many members of Congress do not believe that the FBI acted free of political interference, they demanded to see the full FBI files in the case, not just the selected portions of the files that the FBI had released. In the case of the House, the FBI declined to surrender its files, and the agent it sent to testify about them declined to reveal their contents. This led to a dramatic service of a subpoena by the chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on that FBI agent while he was testifying - all captured on live nationally broadcast television. ..."
"... According to Sen. Chuck Grassley, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, the FBI violated federal law by commingling classified and unclassified materials in the safe room, thereby making it unlawful for senators to discuss publicly the unclassified material. ..."
"... Imposing such a burden of silence on U.S. senators about unclassified materials is unlawful and unconstitutional. What does the FBI have to hide? Whence comes the authority of the FBI to bar senators from commenting on unclassified materials? ..."
"... What is going on here? The FBI investigation of Hillary Clinton has not served the rule of law. The rule of law - a pillar of American constitutional freedom since the end of the Civil War - mandates that the laws are to be enforced equally. No one is beneath their protection, and no one is above ..."
Sep 16, 2016 | www.zerohedge.com

Zero Hedge (reprinted from LewRockwell.com )

It is hard to believe that the FBI was free to do its work, and it is probably true that the FBI was restrained by the White House early on. There were numerous aberrations in the investigation. There was no grand jury; no subpoenas were issued; no search warrants were served. Two people claimed to have received immunity, yet the statutory prerequisite for immunity - giving testimony before a grand or trial jury - was never present.

Because many members of Congress do not believe that the FBI acted free of political interference, they demanded to see the full FBI files in the case, not just the selected portions of the files that the FBI had released. In the case of the House, the FBI declined to surrender its files, and the agent it sent to testify about them declined to reveal their contents. This led to a dramatic service of a subpoena by the chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on that FBI agent while he was testifying - all captured on live nationally broadcast television.

Now the FBI, which usually serves subpoenas and executes search warrants, is left with the alternative of complying with this unwanted subpoena by producing its entire file or arguing to a federal judge why it should not be compelled to do so.

On the Senate side, matters are even more out of hand. There, in response to a request from the Senate Judiciary Committee, the FBI sent both classified and unclassified materials to the Senate safe room. The Senate safe room is a secure location that is available only to senators and their senior staff, all of whom must surrender their mobile devices and writing materials and swear in writing not to reveal whatever they see while in the room before they are permitted to enter.

According to Sen. Chuck Grassley, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, the FBI violated federal law by commingling classified and unclassified materials in the safe room, thereby making it unlawful for senators to discuss publicly the unclassified material.

Imposing such a burden of silence on U.S. senators about unclassified materials is unlawful and unconstitutional. What does the FBI have to hide? Whence comes the authority of the FBI to bar senators from commenting on unclassified materials?

Who cares about this? Everyone who believes that the government works for us should care because we have a right to know what the government - here the FBI - has done in our names. Sen. Grassley has opined that if he could reveal what he has seen in the FBI unclassified records, it would be of profound interest to American voters.

What is going on here? The FBI investigation of Hillary Clinton has not served the rule of law. The rule of law - a pillar of American constitutional freedom since the end of the Civil War - mandates that the laws are to be enforced equally. No one is beneath their protection, and no one is above

Short Squeeze •Sep 16, 2016 12:12 PM

My theory is that when Comey stated "no reasonable prosecutor would prosecute", he already knew of her health issues. Would a prosecutor go after someone with 6 months to live?

saloonsf •Sep 16, 2016 12:03 PM

That's not FBI's responsibilities-exposing the elites cupabilities. The FBI primary objective is to protect the elites and the system that benefit them.

Atomizer •Sep 16, 2016 12:10 PM

The wagons are circling around the Clinton Foundation. Chelsea's husband is going to get nicked.

withglee •Sep 16, 2016 12:25 PM

Sen. Grassley has opined that if he could reveal what he has seen in the FBI unclassified records, it would be of profound interest to American voters.

So what's keeping Grassley from asking that those unclassified documents be taken from the room and laid on his desk. He is not allowed to talk about what he saw in the room. But for sure he is allowed to talk about unclassified documents laid upon his desk ... even if they were once in the room. If that wasn't the case, the government would just run every document through the room ... to give it official immunity from inspection and exposure.

[Sep 16, 2016] Most interesting to me was confirmation that the server was breached. Unknown parties accessed it from TOR multiple times. From your link, an individual email account on the server was breached

Notable quotes:
"... The State Deptartment had been using Blackberries since 2006, and diplomats overseas had been using them for just as long. ..."
"... Hillary Clinton didn't need to use a fancy NSA-approved smartphone to access classified data. Whenever she went overseas, she had a team of IT specialists who was able to provide her with ClassNet access, and they're able to do so without any technical support from a US Embassy. ..."
"... The Exchange and BES software were likely purchased by Hillary '08, and properly licensed for that usage. But as far as after that.... ..."
"... In a country where a standing governer running as VP could be found explicitly and intentionally using Yahoo email for the express purpose of avoiding FOIA on relevant government business, and there be no investigation whatsoever well. Let's just say there's an exceedingly strong whiff of double standards in the air. ..."
"... Most interesting to me was confirmation that the server was breached. Unknown parties accessed it from TOR multiple times. From your link, an individual email account on the server was breached. ..."
"... This happens all the time, for varying reasons, mostly due to a phishing compromise of the account, and occasionally due to password re-use and related vectors of compromise. While it's bad for the individual account's contents, it's absolutely irrelevant beyond that. ..."
"... If that's the worst they can find then personally I'm actually impressed. I was expecting that the server(s) had been root/fully compromised at least once, given how they get perennially described. If that turns out to not be the case, then they've actually been run better and more securely than the State Department's [at least non-classified] servers, from all reports. ..."
"... A 'breach' of an account is not a breach of the server. The account being access via TOR implies the user credentials were acquired through some means. Was this 'breached' account a classified account? ..."
"... "multiple times" is 3 times in this case, and it wasn't the server that was breached, it was 1 person's email. ..."
Sep 16, 2016 | arstechnica.com
Ars Scholae -> Palatinae reply Sep 3, 2016 10:22 AM

Hillary Clinton didn't need to use her own Blackberry. The State Deptartment had been using Blackberries since 2006, and diplomats overseas had been using them for just as long.

Hillary Clinton didn't need to use a fancy NSA-approved smartphone to access classified data. Whenever she went overseas, she had a team of IT specialists who was able to provide her with ClassNet access, and they're able to do so without any technical support from a US Embassy.

corsairmarks Smack-Fu Master, in training reply Sep 2, 2016 4:27 PM

Quote: First, the Clintons had requested, according to a PRN employee interviewed by the FBI, that the contents of the server be encrypted so that only mail recipients could read the content. This was not done, largely so that PRN technicians could "troubleshoot problems occurring within user accounts," the FBI memo reports.

Also, while the Clintons had requested only local backups, the Datto appliance initially also used Datto's secure cloud backup service until August of 2015. \

Sounds like some of the problem was the contractor not following the procedures established by the client.

Rommel102 Ars Praefectus et Subscriptor reply Sep 2, 2016 4:27 PM

Popular Most interesting to me was confirmation that the server was breached. Unknown parties accessed it from TOR multiple times.

Sean Gallagher IT Editor reply Sep 2, 2016 4:39 PM

vcsjones wrote: I wonder what the odds are that all of the OS / Exchange / BES CALs were actually licensed correctly.

The Exchange and BES software were likely purchased by Hillary '08, and properly licensed for that usage. But as far as after that....

diaphanein Smack-Fu Master, in training reply Sep 2, 2016 4:51 PM Uxorious wrote:

Just to clarify, the move to a hosted solution - with requested encryption - was initiated after Clinton's tenure as Secretary of State (January 21, 2009 – February 1, 2013) was completed in February, 2013, and FOIA requests were no longer applicable as she was no longer a government employee.

I think that would depend on the scope of the migration. Did they migrate all of the history over to the hosted solution? i.e. Did they migrate the OS, Exchange and BES servers into PRN's datacenter? Or, did they start from scratch with a clean slate, fresh install and no data migration. If it's the former and not the latter, I'd be pretty damned certain it'd still be subject to FOIA requests.

Rommel102 wrote:

Most interesting to me was confirmation that the server was breached. Unknown parties accessed it from TOR multiple times. From your link, an individual email account on the server was breached.

This happens all the time, for varying reasons, mostly due to a phishing compromise of the account, and occasionally due to password re-use and related vectors of compromise. While it's bad for the individual account's contents, it's absolutely irrelevant beyond that.

If that's the worst they can find then personally I'm actually impressed. I was expecting that the server(s) had been root/fully compromised at least once, given how they get perennially described. If that turns out to not be the case, then they've actually been run better and more securely than the State Department's [at least non-classified] servers, from all reports.

Look, getting all up in arms over crap like that link is why people like me are no longer convinced there's anything here worth paying attention to. I'm actually willing to listen if there's some kind of smoking gun, but that's some petty bullshit right there.

taswyn Ars Tribunus Militum reply Sep 2, 2016 5:03 PM

Popular ziegler wrote: Rommel102 wrote: Most interesting to me was confirmation that the server was breached. Unknown parties accessed it from TOR multiple times.

Not sure why you are being down voted on newly revealed information that seems to confirm that one of the servers email accounts was breached.

If you're down voting him, perhaps an explanation as to why?

Do you say that "google's servers got breached" every time an individual email account on them is compromised?

What he said is factually incorrect. The server was not breached. An individual email account was accessed. They're not the same thing. Not even an OS user level account. An email account.

omniron Ars Praefectus reply Sep 2, 2016 5:13 PM Popular

Rommel102 wrote: Most interesting to me was confirmation that the server was breached. Unknown parties accessed it from TOR multiple times.

"multiple times" is 3 times in this case, and it wasn't the server that was breached, it was 1 person's email.

Even if this person was clinton herself, we already know there was not much damaging information stored on this server. And considering this seems more like someone used a weak password or was phished, this is a vulnerability no matter what email provider you're using.

aexcorp Ars Scholae Palatinae reply Sep 2, 2016 5:18 PM

Danrarbc wrote: Rommel102 wrote: Danrarbc wrote: ziegler wrote: Rommel102 wrote: Most interesting to me was confirmation that the server was breached. Unknown parties accessed it from TOR multiple times.

Not sure why you are being down voted on newly revealed information that seems to confirm that one of the servers email accounts was breached.

If you're down voting him, perhaps an explanation as to why?
Probably because we know DOJ email servers have also been breached. He's implying that her servers were less secure and somehow put information in harms way. History seems to show us that it wasn't at any more risk.

I didn't imply that at all. Here we have fairly solid evidence that a breach of Hillary's server happened. That seems to contradict the FBI's stance, Comey's statement and testimony, and is a first as far as I know.

And in comparison, the DOJs non-classified email systems were hacked. There is no evidence that the classified system ever was.

A 'breach' of an account is not a breach of the server. The account being access via TOR implies the user credentials were acquired through some means. Was this 'breached' account a classified account?

I could be wrong, but I think that all classified emails from DoD and State have to go through SIPRNet.

If this was strictly respected, then Clinton's server should contain no classified information. In real-life, we saw that a few classified things went through her personal email system, so it wasn't fully respected, or some of the info was not yet classified.

Sean Gallagher IT Editor reply Sep 2, 2016 5:21 PM

Story Author Popular omniron wrote: Rommel102 wrote: Most interesting to me was confirmation that the server was breached. Unknown parties accessed it from TOR multiple times.

"multiple times" is 3 times in this case, and it wasn't the server that was breached, it was 1 person's email.

Even if this person was clinton herself, we already know there was not much damaging information stored on this server. And considering this seems more like someone used a weak password or was phished, this is a vulnerability no matter what email provider you're using.

We're going to get into this in a story I'm currently writing (probably for next week, so it's not a Friday newsdumpster move). But it's worth noting THE ENTIRETY OF THE STATE DEPARTMENT'S UNCLAS EMAIL SYSTEM WAS PWNED FOR OVER A YEAR. I'm sorry, did I type that in all-caps? Also, between Chelsea Manning/ Wikileaks and the repeated hacks of State, the White House, etc between 2009 and 2014, it is highly likely that everything short of the TS/SAP stuff (and even some of that) that Clinton touched was already breached.

This does not excuse Clinton and her staff's-I'm looking at you, Jake Sullivan-for the extreme error of passing Top Secret/ Special Access Program classified data back and forth over Blackberries and a non-governmental e-mail system. I would expect that Sullivan, at a minimum, will have his clearance revoked and he will not be getting a job as a national security adviser if Clinton wins the election. Or at least, I think that's a reasonable expectation.

[Sep 05, 2016] Hillary Clinton email investigation: FBI notes reveal laptop and thumb drive missing

Everything, absolutely everything demonstrates really terrifying level of incompetence: the transfer of emails to Apple laptop, to Gmail account, then transfer back to window system, handing of USB drive. Amazing level of incompetence. This is really devastating level of incompetence for the organization that took over a lot of CIA functions. Essentially Hillary kept the position which is close to the role of the director of CIA What a tragedy for the country...
Notable quotes:
"... It is painfully clear that she traded access and favors for money and reciprocal favors. It is painfully clear that she made little distinction between working for the State Department, the Clinton foundation and her family and tried to keep the records of what was going on inaccessible. The more honest defense would be, all politicians do it, and you have to suck it up because Trump is worse. Which is true. But trying to downplay this and explain it away is offensive, not all of the public are complete idiots. ..."
"... Her brazen air of arrogance and entitlement is about to fade as she comes to realise, that albeit Comey having been got at, he has still succeeded in striking a severe blow against her, and in addition, at the not-so-tin-hat conspiracy of inappropriate, and increasingly overt, institutional support. ..."
"... All this in the face of documented lies, in your face hypocrisy, and unbridled corruption, oozing from every orifice of a maverick administration. ..."
"... Clinton is the one waging war in the middle east. She is the one being bullish and provocative with Russia. Trump has only been conciliatory with these issues, he has been against the war on Iraq ..."
"... HRC is still likely to be the next President, but this scandal does have legs. She put herself in a corner by claiming lack of recall due to a medical condition (i.e., the concussion). This leaves two possibilities, neither of which is helpful to her cause, to wit: either she was being dishonest or she was (and could still be) cognitively impaired. ..."
"... Reagan was certainly not someone I admired but at least he tried to reduce the chance of nuclear war. Clinton is an out and out Hawke with the blood of many innocent people on her hands in both Syria and Libya. She is hiding her communications because she does not want to be exposed for the role she played in The destruction of Libya and the gun running of weapons to terrorists in Syria. That is to Al Qaeda and ISIS. World War 3 is more likely under Clinton than any other world leader. Even Trump. ..."
"... Not forgetting that she was key in making sure the US didn't side with Assad. Had the US done at the beginning, instead of being at the behest of the Saudis and the petrodollar, then the whole thing would have been over in 6 months and IS would never have got more than a dusty district of northern Iraq. ..."
"... So the applicant to the US presidency does not know what (c) stands for in her emails, archives high security data on a laptop and then losses it for years, uploads same emails on Google's gmail account and then losses devices again. She does not recall many things, not even the training she received on handling the confidential and secure communication. She couldn't recall the procces of drone strikes. (Will she be killing people at a whim, without an accountable protocol?) She is either demented or dangerously reckless or lying. All of these conditions disbar her form her candidacy. ..."
"... If she could only manage a couple of hours a day because of concussion and a blood clot she should have temporarily stood down until she recovered fully, and had a senior official take over her duties until she was well. You can't have a brain-damaged person in charge of the US's affairs - even though there is a long history of nutters the State Dept. ( ie the Military Industrial Complex HQ). ..."
"... the clinton foundation does not pay taxes..and dont forget that slick willie has been on the paedophile plane more times than the pilot ..."
"... She failed to keep up with recordkeeping she agreed to, then when asked to turn over records, somebody destroyed them, but Clinton did not order destruction, or does not remember having done so. Turned over all records-oops I thought WE did! She either lied or has alzheimers ..."
"... Political baggage is a bitch. If this election cycle has demonstrated anything it is that the leadership of both parties is totally out of touch with the voters and really has no interest except supporting the Neoliberal tenet of fiscal nonintervention. This laissez-faire attitude toward corporate interests is paralysing the American government. ..."
"... I cannot believe Clinton has got this far in the election, I believe Obama wants her in to hide many of his embarrassing warmongering mistakes. ..."
"... Today of all days Hillary Clinton puts out a tweet with the following: 'America needs leadership in the White House, not a liability' -- As we have to assume she's not referring to herself it confirms people's suspicion that the person who writes Hillary's tweets is a hostile to her campaign. The tweets are often completely off the mark. ..."
"... Either Comey is on their payroll, or they have threatened his family. Either way it is business as usual. The NWO decided a long time ago that Hillary was their next puppet PONTUS. ..."
"... I was a low-level officer at US Embassies and Consulates in various foreign countries. Clinton's claim that she didn't know what (C) was, or that she "she did not pay attention to the difference between top secret, secret and confidential" and "could not recall any briefing or training by state related to the retention of federal records or handling of classified information." Are beyond ridiculous. Any fool knows enough to be aware of different levels of classified info, and the obvious fact that you don't get sloppy with classified info. ..."
"... to paraphrase Leona Helmsley's comment about paying taxes, "security is for little people." So in that respect Hillary is no different from the rest of them. ..."
"... You'd better hope she's lying, because if the incompetence is genuine she shouldn't be allowed near any confidential information ever again. I hate to admit it but Trump is right on this one. Jesus wept. ..."
"... The fact that the Sec State could have an email server built at her home and operate with such laughable gross negligence when it comes to national security is surreal and appalling. ..."
"... If the FBI were not themselves co-conspirators and hopelessly corrupt, they would indict some of the lower level actors and offer them immunity. They could start with the imbecile who put that laptop in the mail and couldn't remember if it was UPS or USPS. ..."
"... Caddell has voiced an interesting concern that others are beginning to share: that the news media has crawled so far in bed with Hillary Clinton they won't be able to get back out. That the news media in America has lost its soul. Even Jake Tapper started asking this question several weeks ago in the middle of his own show. ..."
"... The pyramid scheme of created debt has destroyed capitalism and democracy within 40 years of full operation. Captured Govt has bailed out incompetence and failure at every turn, and in so doing, inverted the yield curve and destroyed the future. It is for this reason alone I cannot respect these financial paedophiles or support anything they do. In this contest for the White House, Clinton is the manifestation of the establishment. ..."
"... "The documents provided a number of new details about Mrs. Clinton's private server, including what appeared to be a frantic effort by a computer specialist to delete an archive of her emails even after a congressional committee had requested they be preserved." -NY Times ..."
"... Hillary's treatment of top-secret US documents was willful and uncorrected. If she had done the same thing with medical records, the individuals whose medical records had been mishandled could have filed charges and Hillary would have been personally liable for up to $50,000 fine per incident. ..."
"... Clinton is an absolute liability. Apart from this scandal she's a status quo candidate for a status quo that no longer exists. She stands for neo-liberalism, US hegemony and capitalist globalization all of which are deader than the dodo. That makes her very dangerous in terms of world peace and of course she will do absolutely nothing for the millions of Americans facing joblessness, hunger, bankruptcy and homelessness except make things worse ..."
"... The entire corrupt establishment want Clinton at all cost, so that they can continue fleecing the future and enslaving the entire world in created debt. All right minded individuals should this as a flashing red light to turn round and vote the other way. ..."
www.theguardian.com

A Clinton Foundation laptop and a thumb drive used to archive Hillary Clinton's emails from her time as secretary of state are missing, according to FBI notes released on Friday.

The phrase "Clinton could not recall" litters the summary of the FBI's investigation, which concluded in July that she should not face charges. Amid fierce Republican criticism of the Democratic presidential candidate, the party's nominee, Donald Trump released a statement which said "Hillary Clinton's answers to the FBI about her private email server defy belief" and added that he did not "understand how she was able to get away from prosecution".

he FBI documents describe how Monica Hanley, a former Clinton aide, received assistance in spring 2013 from Justin Cooper, a former aide to Bill Clinton, in creating an archive of Hillary Clinton's emails. Cooper provided Hanley with an Apple MacBook laptop from the Clinton Foundation – the family organisation currently embroiled in controversy – and talked her through the process of transferring emails from Clinton's private server to the laptop and a thumb drive.

"Hanley completed this task from her personal residence," the notes record. The devices were intended to be stored at Clinton's homes in New York and Washington. However, Hanley "forgot" to provide the archive laptop and thumb drive to Clinton's staff.

In early 2014, Hanley located the laptop at her home and tried to transfer the email archive to an IT company, apparently without success. It appears the emails were then transferred to an unnamed person's personal Gmail account and there were problems around Apple software not being compatible with that of Microsoft.

The unnamed person "told the FBI that, after the transfer was complete, he deleted the emails from the archive laptop but did not wipe the laptop. The laptop was then put in the mail, only to go missing. [Redacted] told the FBI that she never received the laptop from [redacted]; however, she advised that Clinton's staff was moving offices at the time, and it would have been easy for the package to get lost during the transition period.

"Neither Hanley nor [redacted] could identify the current whereabouts of the archive laptop or thumb drive containing the archive, and the FBI does not have either item in its possession."

... ... ...

The FBI identified a total of 13 mobile devices associated with Clinton's two known phone numbers that potentially were used to send emails using clintonemail.com addresses.

The 58 pages of notes released on Friday, several of which were redacted, also related that Hanley often purchased replacement BlackBerry devices for Clinton during Clinton's time at the state department. Hanley recalled buying most of them at AT&T stores in the Washington area. Cooper was usually responsible for setting them up and synching them to the server.

Clinton's closest aide, Huma Abedin, and Hanley "indicated the whereabouts of Clinton's devices would frequently become unknown once she transitioned to a new device", the documents state. "Cooper did recall two instances where he destroyed Clinton's old mobile devices by breaking them in half or hitting them with a hammer."

The notes also contain a string of admissions by Clinton about points she did not know or could not recall: "When asked about the email chain containing '(C)' portion markings that state determined to currently contain CONFIDENTIAL information, Clinton stated that she did not know what the '(C)' meant at the beginning of the paragraphs and speculated it was referencing paragraphs marked in alphabetical order."

Clinton said she did not pay attention to the difference between top secret, secret and confidential but "took all classified information seriously". She did not recall receiving any emails she thought should not have been on an unclassified system. She also stated she received no particular guidance as to how she should use the president's email address.

In addition, the notes say: "Clinton could not recall when she first received her security clearance and if she carried it with her to state via reciprocity from her time in the Senate. Clinton could not recall any briefing or training by state related to the retention of federal records or handling of classified information."

Clinton was aware she was an original classification authority at the state department, but again "could not recall how often she used this authority or any training or guidance provided by state. Clinton could not give an example of how classification of a document was determined."

... ... ...

The House speaker, Paul Ryan, said: "These documents demonstrate Hillary Clinton's reckless and downright dangerous handling of classified information during her tenure as secretary of state. They also cast further doubt on the justice department's decision to avoid prosecuting what is a clear violation of the law. This is exactly why I have called for her to be denied access to classified information."

Reince Priebus, chair of the Republican National Committee, said: "The FBI's summary of their interview with Hillary Clinton is a devastating indictment of her judgment, honesty and basic competency. Clinton's answers either show she is completely incompetent or blatantly lied to the FBI or the public.

"Either way it's clear that, through her own actions, she has disqualified herself from the presidency."

The Clinton campaign insisted that it was pleased the notes had been made public. Spokesman Brian Fallon said: "While her use of a single email account was clearly a mistake and she has taken responsibility for it, these materials make clear why the justice department believed there was no basis to move forward with this case."

Terrence James 3h ago

This is the equivalent of the dog ate my homework. This woman could not utter an honest sentence if her life depended on it. She is a corrupt and evil person, I cannot stand Trump but I think I hate her more. Trump is just crazy and cannot help himself but she is calculatingly evil. We are doomed either way, but he would be more darkly entertaining.


Smallworld5 3h ago

Has any of Clinton's state department employees purposely built their own server in their basement on which to conduct official government business, in gross violation of department policy, protocols, and regulations, they would have been summarily fired at a minimum and, yes, quite possibly prosecuted. That's a fact.

The issue at hand is why Clinton sycophants are so agreeable to the Clinton Double Standard.

The presumptive next president of the U.S. being held to a lower standard than the average U.S. civil servant. Sickening.


Laurence Johnson 8h ago

Hillary's use of gender has no place in politics. When it comes to the top job, the people need the best person for the job, not someone who is given a GO because they represent a group that are encouraged to feel discriminated against.


foggy2 9h ago

For the FBI's (or Comey's) this is also a devastating indictment of their or his judgment, honesty and basic competency.

YANKSOPINION 10h ago

Perhaps she has early onset of Alzheimers and should not be considered for the job of POTUS. Or maybe she is just a liar.


AlexLeo 10h ago

It is painfully clear that she traded access and favors for money and reciprocal favors. It is painfully clear that she made little distinction between working for the State Department, the Clinton foundation and her family and tried to keep the records of what was going on inaccessible. The more honest defense would be, all politicians do it, and you have to suck it up because Trump is worse. Which is true. But trying to downplay this and explain it away is offensive, not all of the public are complete idiots.

KaleidoscopeWars

Actually, after you get over all of the baffooning around Trump has done, he actually would make an ideal president. He loves his country, he delegates jobs well to people who show the best results, he's good at building stuff and he wants to do a good job. I'm sure after he purges the terribly corrupted system that he'll be given, he'll have the very best advisors around him to make good decisions for the American people. I'm sure Theresa May and her cabinet will be quick to welcome him and re-solidify the relationship that has affected British politics so much in the past decade. Boris Johnson is perfect for our relations with America under a Trump administration. Shame on you Barack and Hillary. Hopefully Trump will say ''I came, I saw, they died!''

Ullu001 12h ago

Ah, The Clintons. They have done it all: destruction of evidence, witness tampering, fraud, lying under oath, murder, witness disappearance. Did I leave anything? Yet, they go unpunished. Too clever, I guess too clever for their own good!

samwoods77 12h ago

Hillary wants to be the most powerful person on earth yet claims she doesn't understand the classification system that even the most most junior secretary can....deeply troubling.

Mistaron 13h ago

The 'masters' in the shadows are about to throw the harridan under the bus. Her brazen air of arrogance and entitlement is about to fade as she comes to realise, that albeit Comey having been got at, he has still succeeded in striking a severe blow against her, and in addition, at the not-so-tin-hat conspiracy of inappropriate, and increasingly overt, institutional support.

All this in the face of documented lies, in your face hypocrisy, and unbridled corruption, oozing from every orifice of a maverick administration.

The seeds have been planted for a defense of diminished responsibility. Don't fall for it! Hillary, (and her illustrious spouse), deserve not a smidgen of pity.

''We came, we saw, he died'', she enthusiastically and unempathically cackled.

Just about sums her up.


wtfbollos 14h ago

hiliary clinton beheaded libya and created a hell on earth. here is the proof:

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/jan/28/hillary-clinton-undercut-on-libya-war-by-pentagon-/?page=all#pagebreak

jean2121 -> ken711 13h ago

Again, total misunderstanding about what is going on. Clinton is the one waging war in the middle east. She is the one being bullish and provocative with Russia. Trump has only been conciliatory with these issues, he has been against the war on Iraq. So far all evidences point to the fact that the Clintons want another big war and all evidence points to the fact that Trump wants co operation. This has totally escape your analysis. It is a choice between the Plague and the Cholera, I agree, but FGS try to be a little less biased.


ungruntled 15h ago

The best case for HC looks pretty grim.
She has no recollection of......??
Laptops and Thumb drives laying about unattended
Total lack of understanding about even the most basic of Data Securit arrangements

All of these things giver her the benefit of the doubt....That she wasnt a liar and a corrupted politician manipulating events and people to suit her own ends.
So, with the benefit of the doubt given, ask yourself if this level of incompetance and unreliabilty makes a suitable candidate for office?
In both cases, with and without BOTD, she shouldnt be allowed anywhere near the corridors of power, let alone the White House.

IAtheist 17h ago

Mrs Clinton is deeply divisive. Bought out since her husbands presidency by vested interests in Wall Street and the HMO's (private healthcare insurance management businesses) and having shown lamentable judgement, Benghazi, private Email server used for classified documents and material.

She has failed to motivate the Democrats white and blue collar working voters male and female. These are the voting demographic who have turned to Trump is significant numbers as he does address their concerns, iniquitous tax rules meaning multi millionaires pay less tax on capital gains and share dividends than employees do on their basic wages, immigration and high levels of drug and gun crime in working class communities Black, White and Hispanic, funding illegal immigrants and failed American youth living on a black economy in the absence of affordable healthcare or a basic welfare system.

Trump may very well win and is likely to be better for the US than Hilary Clinton.

digamey 18h ago

I sympathize with the American electorate - they have to choose between the Devil and the deep blue sea. Given their situation, however, I would definitely choose the Devil I know over the Devil I don't! And that Devil is - - - ?

MoneyCircus -> digamey 10h ago

That willful ignorance is your choice! A public businessman can be examined more closely than most.

Besides, there is a long history of "placemen" presidents whose performance is determined by those they appoint to do the work. Just look in the White House right now.

As for the Clinton record (they come, incontrovertibly, as a package) from Mena, Arkansas, to her husband's deregulation of the banks which heralded the financial crash that devastated millions of lives... the same banks that are currently HRC's most enthusiastic funders... is something that any genuine Democrat should not be able to stomach...

ID9761679 19h ago

My feeling is that she had more to worry about than the location of a thumb drive (I can't recall how many of those I've lost) or even a laptop. When a Secretary of State moves around, I doubt that look after their own appliances. Has anyone asked her where the fan is?

Karega ID9761679 18h ago

Problem is she handled top secret and classified information which would endanger her country's security and strategic interests. She was then US Secretary of State. That is why how she handled her thumb drive, laptop nd desktops matter. And there lies the difference between your numerous lost thumb drives and hers. I thought this was obvious?

EightEyedSpy 23h ago

HRC is still likely to be the next President, but this scandal does have legs. She put herself in a corner by claiming lack of recall due to a medical condition (i.e., the concussion). This leaves two possibilities, neither of which is helpful to her cause, to wit: either she was being dishonest or she was (and could still be) cognitively impaired.

1iJack -> EightEyedSpy 22h ago

either she was being dishonest or she was (and could still be) cognitively impaired.

Its entirely possible its both.

Dick York 24h ago

California survived Arnold Schwarzenegger, the U.S. survived Ronald Reagan, Minnesota survived Jesse "The Body" Ventura and I believe that we will survive Donald Trump. He's only one more celebrity on the road.

providenciales -> Dick York 23h ago

You forgot Al Franken.

antipodes -> Dick York 21h ago

Reagan was certainly not someone I admired but at least he tried to reduce the chance of nuclear war. Clinton is an out and out Hawke with the blood of many innocent people on her hands in both Syria and Libya. She is hiding her communications because she does not want to be exposed for the role she played in The destruction of Libya and the gun running of weapons to terrorists in Syria. That is to Al Qaeda and ISIS. World War 3 is more likely under Clinton than any other world leader. Even Trump. The Democrats must disendorse her because the details of her criminality are now becoming available and unless she can stop it Trump will win. Get rid of her Democrats and bring back Bernie Sanders.

Sam3456 1d ago

We cannot afford a lying, neo-liberal who is more than willing to make her role in government a for profit endeavor.

Four years of anyone else is preferable to someone who is more than willing for the right contribution to her foundation, sell out the American worker and middle class.

MakeBeerNotWar 1d ago

I'm more interested $250k a pop speeches HRC gave to the unindicted Wall St bankster felon scum who nearly took down their country and the global economy yet received a taxpayer bailout and their bonuses paid for being greedy incompetent crooks. How soon we forget....

http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2015/09/how-wall-streets-bankers-stayed-out-of-jail/399368/

sorrentina -> MakeBeerNotWar 22h ago

even worse is her support for the military coup in Honduras- and her blatant lies in defense of that coup: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hS-tDVwSHlA

trow 1d ago

Its seems there is just one scandal after another with this women but she seems to be bullet proof mainly because the msm media will not go after her for reasons best known to themselves this is causing them to lose credibility and readers who are deserting them for alternative media .

bashh1 1d ago

Finally today in an article in The NY Times we learn where Clinton has been for a good part of the summer. In the Hamptons and elsewhere at receptions for celebrities and her biggest donors like Calvin Klein and Harvey Weinstein, raking in the millions for her campaign. Trump on the other hand has appeared in towns in Pennsylvania like Scranton, Erie and Altoona where job are disappearing and times can be tough. Coronations cost money I guess.

chiefwiley -> bashh1 1d ago

She is doing what she does best --- raise money.

ksenak 1d ago

Not forgetting that she was key in making sure the US didn't side with Assad. Had the US done at the beginning, instead of being at the behest of the Saudis and the petrodollar, then the whole thing would have been over in 6 months and IS would never have got more than a dusty district of northern Iraq.

ksenak 1d ago

Hillary is humiliated woman. Humiliated to the core by her cheating hubby she would rather kill than let him go. She is paying her evil revenge to the whole world. As a president of USA Hillary Clinton would destabilise the world and lead it to conflicts that threaten to be very heavy.

As Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was part of the "Arab Spring" (also part of the "Jasmine Revolution), which overthrew leaders such as Gaddafi to Mubarak. Before Gaddafi was overthrown he told the US that without him IS will take over Libya. They did.
-Benghazi Scandal which ended up killing a US Ambassador Christopher Stevens and other Americans.
The Arab Spring destabilized the Middle East, contributed to the Syrian civil war, the rise of ISIS and the exodus of Middle Eastern Muslims.

Sam3456 OXIOXI20 1d ago

Meh. Obama characterized ISIS as the "JV Team" and refused to acknowledge the threat. I assume he was acting on information provided by his Secretary of State, Clinton.

Michael109 1d ago

It's quite possible that Clinton, because she had a fall in 2012 and bonked her head, believes she is telling the truth when she is lying, except that it is not lying when you believe you are telling the truth even though you are lying.

She said she did not recall 30 times in her interviews with the FBI. She could be suffering from some sort of early degeneration disease. Either way, between her health and the lying and corruption she should be withdrawn as the Dem frontrunner.

1iJack -> LakumbaDaGreat 1d ago

She's going to blow it.

I think she already did. Its like all the shit in her life is coming back on her at once.

Early on, when it was announced she would run again, I remember one Democrat pundit in particular that didn't think she could survive the existence of the Internet in the general election (I can't remember who it was, though). But it has turned out to be a pretty astute prediction.

When asked what he meant by that remark, he went on to say "the staying power of the Internet will overwhelm Clinton with her dirty laundry once she gets to the general election. The Clintons were made for the 24 hour news cycles of the past and not the permanent unmanaged exposure of the digital world. Everything is new again on the internet. Its Groundhog Day forever on the Internet."

That's my best paraphrase of his thoughts. He felt Clinton was the last of the "old school" politicians bringing too much baggage to an election. That with digital "bread crumbs" of some kind or another (email, microphones and cameras in phones, etc) the new generation of politicians will be a cleaner lot, not through virtue, but out of necessity.

I've often thought back to his remarks while watching Hillary head into the general.

ImperialAhmed 1d ago

So the applicant to the US presidency does not know what (c) stands for in her emails, archives high security data on a laptop and then losses it for years, uploads same emails on Google's gmail account and then losses devices again.
She does not recall many things, not even the training she received on handling the confidential and secure communication.
She couldn't recall the procces of drone strikes. (Will she be killing people at a whim, without an accountable protocol?)
She is either demented or dangerously reckless or lying. All of these conditions disbar her form her candidacy.


AudieTer
1d ago

If she could only manage a couple of hours a day because of concussion and a blood clot she should have temporarily stood down until she recovered fully, and had a senior official take over her duties until she was well. You can't have a brain-damaged person in charge of the US's affairs - even though there is a long history of nutters the State Dept. ( ie the Military Industrial Complex HQ). And in the White House for that matter ...Nurse -- nurse -- Dubya needs his meds!

thedingo8 -> Lenthelurker 1d ago

the clinton foundation does not pay taxes..and dont forget that slick willie has been on the paedophile plane more times than the pilot

Littlefella 1d ago

She destroyed devices and emails after they were told that all evidence had to be preserved. There are then two issues and the FBI and DOJ have not taken any action on either.

It's no longer just about the emails, it's the corruption.

DaveG123 1d ago

Clinton's closest aide, Huma Abedin, and Hanley "indicated the whereabouts of Clinton's devices would frequently become unknown once she transitioned to a new device"
-------------
Probably in the hands of a foreign government. Pretty careless behaviour. Incompetent. Part of a pattern of incompetance that includes bad foreign policy decisions (Libya) and disrespect for rules surrounding conflict of interest (Clinton Foundation).

YANKSOPINION -> HansB09 1d ago

She failed to keep up with recordkeeping she agreed to, then when asked to turn over records, somebody destroyed them, but Clinton did not order destruction, or does not remember having done so. Turned over all records-oops I thought WE did! She either lied or has alzheimers

Andy White 1d ago

In addition, the notes say:

"Clinton could not recall when she first received her security clearance and if she carried it with her to state via reciprocity from her time in the Senate. Clinton could not recall any briefing or training by state related to the retention of federal records or handling of classified information."

Clinton was aware she was an original classification authority at the state department, but again "could not recall how often she used this authority or any training or guidance provided by state. Clinton could not give an example of how classification of a document was determined." ...................secretary of state and could not recall basic security protocols???

....and people complain about trump....this basic security was mentioned in the bloody west wing series for god's sake.....in comparison even trump is a f'ing genius.......love him or hate him trump has to win over clinton,there is something very,very wrong with her....she should NEVER be in charge of a till at asda......and she is a clinton so we all know a very practised liar but this beggers belief,i can see why trump is angry if that was him he would have been publicly burnt at the stake.....this clinton crap just stink's of the political elite....a total joke cover up and a terrible obvious one to....clinton is just a liar and mentally i think she is very unstable....makes the DON look like hawking lol.....

namora 1d ago

Political baggage is a bitch. If this election cycle has demonstrated anything it is that the leadership of both parties is totally out of touch with the voters and really has no interest except supporting the Neoliberal tenet of fiscal nonintervention. This laissez-faire attitude toward corporate interests is paralysing the American government.

duncandunnit 1d ago

I cannot believe Clinton has got this far in the election, I believe Obama wants her in to hide many of his embarrassing warmongering mistakes.

fedback 1d ago

Today of all days Hillary Clinton puts out a tweet with the following: 'America needs leadership in the White House, not a liability' -- As we have to assume she's not referring to herself it confirms people's suspicion that the person who writes Hillary's tweets is a hostile to her campaign. The tweets are often completely off the mark.

Hercolubus 1d ago

Either Comey is on their payroll, or they have threatened his family. Either way it is business as usual. The NWO decided a long time ago that Hillary was their next puppet PONTUS.

BG Davis 2d ago

Clinton has always been a devious weasel, but this reveals a new low. I was a low-level officer at US Embassies and Consulates in various foreign countries. Clinton's claim that she didn't know what (C) was, or that she "she did not pay attention to the difference between top secret, secret and confidential" and "could not recall any briefing or training by state related to the retention of federal records or handling of classified information." Are beyond ridiculous. Any fool knows enough to be aware of different levels of classified info, and the obvious fact that you don't get sloppy with classified info.

That said, over the past few years the entire handling of classified info has become beyond sloppy - laptops left in taxis, General Petraeus was sharing classified info with his mistress, etc. I guess nowadays, to paraphrase Leona Helmsley's comment about paying taxes, "security is for little people." So in that respect Hillary is no different from the rest of them.

Scaff1 2d ago

You'd better hope she's lying, because if the incompetence is genuine she shouldn't be allowed near any confidential information ever again. I hate to admit it but Trump is right on this one. Jesus wept. I said it before: Clinton is the only candidate who could possibly make a tyrant like Trump electable.


charlieblue -> gizadog 2d ago

Where are you getting "looses 13 devices"? (Try loses, nobody is accusing Sec.Clinton of making things loose) I actually read the article, so my information might not be as exciting as yours, but this article states that from the 13 devices that had access to the Clinton server, two (a laptop and a thumb drive) used by one of her aids, are missing. This article doesn't specify whether any "classified" information was on either of them. The FBI doesn't know, because, well... they are missing.

What the fuck is it with you people and your loose relationship with actual facts? Do you realize that just making shit up undermines whatever point you imagine you are trying to make?

gizadog 2d ago

Also: Clinton told FBI she thought classified markings were alphabetical paragraphs

"When asked what the parenthetical 'C' meant before a paragraph ... Clinton stated she did not know and could only speculate it was referencing paragraphs marked in alphabetical order," the FBI wrote in notes from its interview with her."

Wow...and there are people that want her to be president.

Casey13 2d ago

In my job as a government contractor we are extremely vigilant about not connecting removable devices to work computers, no work email access outside of work, software algorithms that scan our work mails for any sensitive information, and regular required training on information security. The fact that the Sec State could have an email server built at her home and operate with such laughable gross negligence when it comes to national security is surreal and appalling. I could never vote for her and neither could I vote for Trump.

MonotonousLanguor 2d ago

>>> A Clinton Foundation laptop and a thumb drive used to archive Hillary Clinton's emails from her time as secretary of state are missing, according to FBI notes released on Friday.<<<

Oh golly gee, what a surprise. Should we offer a reward??? Maybe Amelia Earhart has the laptop and thumb drive. Were these missing items taken by the Great Right Wing Conspiracy???

Dani Jenkins 2d ago

Wtf, from the sublime to the ridiculous, springs to mind..

Time to get a grip of the gravity involved, here at the Guardian.. This is a total whitewash of the absurd kind.. That leaves people laughing in pure unadultered astonishment..

SHE lost not just a MacBook & thumb drive with such BS..

So Trump it is then , like many of us have stated ALL ALONG. Sanders was the only serious contender.. A complete mockery of democracy & the so called Democrats have made the way for Trump to cruise all the way to the Whitewash House..

Well done Debbie , did the Don pay you?

chiefwiley -> Lenthelurker 2d ago

Because the revelations are essentially contradicting all of Hillary's defenses regarding her handling of highly classified information. None of the requirements of the State Department mattered to her or her personal staff. It won't go away --- it will get worse as information trickles out.

Casey13 2d ago

Being President of the USA used to be about communicating a vision and inspiring Americans to get behind that dream . Think Lincoln abolishing slavery or JFK setting a goal to put man on the moon. Hillary is boring,has no charisma,and no vision for her Presidency beyond using corruption and intimidation to secure greater power for her and her cronies . Nobody wants to listen to her speeches because she is boring, uninspiring, and has no wit beyond tired cliches. Trump has a vision but that vision is a nightmare for many Americans.

imperfetto 2d ago

Clinton is a dangerous warmonger. She is a danger to us Europeans, as she might drag us into a conflict with Russia. We must get rid of her, politically, and re-educate the Americas to respect other nations, and give up exporting their corrupting values.

Tom Voloshen 2d ago

Liar liar liar....give her a chance, and another and another and another and another...
.
http://www.westernjournalism.com/cnn-stunned-fact-checkers-confirm-clinton-phones-destroyed-hammers/

JCDavis 2d ago

"After reading these documents, I really don't understand how she was able to get away from prosecution."

If the FBI were not themselves co-conspirators and hopelessly corrupt, they would indict some of the lower level actors and offer them immunity. They could start with the imbecile who put that laptop in the mail and couldn't remember if it was UPS or USPS. Or did he actually send it to the Ecuadorian embassy in the UK by accident?

1iJack 2d ago

"The job of the media historically, in terms of the First Amendment – what I call the unspoken compact in the First Amendment – is that the free press, without restraint, without checks and balances, is there in order to protect the people from power. Its job is to be a check on government, and those who rule the country, and not to be their lapdogs, and their support system. That's what we're seeing in this election.

There is an argument to make that the major news media in this country, the mainstream media, is essentially serving against the people's interest. They have made themselves an open ally of protecting a political order that the American people are rejecting, by three quarters or more of the American people. That makes them a legitimate issue, in a sense they never have been before, if Trump takes advantage of it."

Pat Caddell, 2 Sept 2016

Caddell has voiced an interesting concern that others are beginning to share: that the news media has crawled so far in bed with Hillary Clinton they won't be able to get back out. That the news media in America has lost its soul. Even Jake Tapper started asking this question several weeks ago in the middle of his own show.

Will the American press ever have credibility with Americans again? Even Democrats see it and will remember this the next time the press turns against them. There was a new and overt power grab in this election that is still being processed by the American people: the American press "saving" America from Donald Trump. They may never recover from this.

It even scares my Democrat friends.

ConBrio 2d ago

"An unknown individual using the encrypted privacy tool Tor to hide their tracks accessed an email account on a Clinton family server, the FBI revealed Friday.

"The incident appears to be the first confirmed intrusion into a piece of hardware associated with Hillary Clinton's private email system, which originated with a server established for her husband, former President Bill Clinton.

The FBI disclosed the event in its newly released report on the former secretary of state's handling of classified information.

http://www.politico.com/story/2016/09/clinton-email-server-tor-227697

fanUS 2d ago

Clinton is a very dodgy character and cannot be trusted.

Boris Johnson, UK Foreign Secretary on Clinton: "She's got dyed blonde hair and pouty lips, and a steely blue stare, like a sadistic nurse in a mental hospital"

CleanPool330 2d ago

The collective mind of the establishment is mentally ill and spinning out of control. In all rites they should be removed but their arrogance, corruption and self-entitlement mean they are incapable of admitting guilt. They have corrupted the weak minds of the majority and will take everybody down with them.

The pyramid scheme of created debt has destroyed capitalism and democracy within 40 years of full operation. Captured Govt has bailed out incompetence and failure at every turn, and in so doing, inverted the yield curve and destroyed the future. It is for this reason alone I cannot respect these financial paedophiles or support anything they do. In this contest for the White House, Clinton is the manifestation of the establishment.

unusedusername 2d ago

If I understand this correctly a laptop and a flashdrive full of classified emails was put in a jiffy bag and stuck in the post and now they're missing and this is, apparently, just one of those things? Amazing!

Blair Hess 2d ago

I'm in the military. Not a high rank mind you. It defies all common logic that HRC has never had a briefing, training, or just side conversation about classified information handling when i have about 50 trainings a year on it and i barely handle it. Sheeple wake up and stop drinking the kool aid

Ullu001 2d ago

The Clintons have always operated on the edge of the law: extremely clever and dangerous lawyers they are.

USADanny -> Ullu001

Hillary may be criminally clever but legally: not so much. You do know that she failed the Washington DC bar exam and all of her legal "success" after that was a result of being very spouse of a powerful politician.

calderonparalapaz 2d ago

"The documents provided a number of new details about Mrs. Clinton's private server, including what appeared to be a frantic effort by a computer specialist to delete an archive of her emails even after a congressional committee had requested they be preserved." -NY Times

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/03/us/politics/hillary-clinton-fbi.html?_r=0

USADanny -> Lee Knutsen 2d ago

Virtually every American healthcare worker has to take annual HIPAA training, pass a multiple-choice test and signed a document attesting that they have taken the training and are fully aware of the serious consequences of inadvertent and willful violations of HIPAA. Oh the irony – HIPAA is a Clinton era law.

Hillary's treatment of top-secret US documents was willful and uncorrected. If she had done the same thing with medical records, the individuals whose medical records had been mishandled could have filed charges and Hillary would have been personally liable for up to $50,000 fine per incident.

http://www.ama-assn.org/ama/pub/physician-resources/solutions-managing-your-practice/coding-billing-insurance/hipaahealth-insurance-portability-accountability-act/hipaa-violations-enforcement.page?

Other than Hillary negligently handling top-secret documents, having a head injury that by her own admission has impaired her memory and using her relationship with the Clinton foundation when she was Secretary of State to extort hundreds of millions of dollars, she is an excellent candidate for the president.

oeparty 2d ago

Clinton is an absolute liability. Apart from this scandal she's a status quo candidate for a status quo that no longer exists. She stands for neo-liberalism, US hegemony and capitalist globalization all of which are deader than the dodo. That makes her very dangerous in terms of world peace and of course she will do absolutely nothing for the millions of Americans facing joblessness, hunger, bankruptcy and homelessness except make things worse.

And yet, and yet, we must vote Clinton simply to Stop Trump. He is a proto-fascist determined to smash resistance to the 1% in America and abroad via military means. He is a realist who realises capitalism is over and only the purest and most overwhelming violence can save the super rich and the elites now. Certainly their economy gives them nothing any more. The American Dream is toast. The Green Stein will simply draw a few votes from Clinton and give Trump the victory and it is not like she is a genuinely progressive candidate herself being something of a Putin fan just like Trump. No, vote Clinton to Stop Trump but only so that we can use the next four years to build the revolutionary socialist alternative. To build the future.

dongerdo 2d ago

The Americans are screwed anyways because both easily are the most despicable and awful front runners I can think of in any election of a western democracy in decades (and that is quite an achievement in itself to be honest), the only thing left to hope for is a winner not outright horrible for the rest of the world on which front Clinton loses big time: electing her equals pouring gasoline over half the world, she is up for finishing the disastrous job in the Middle East and North Africa started by her as Secretary of State. Her stance on relations with Russia and China are utterly horrific, listening to her makes even the die-hard GOP neo-cons faction sound like peace corps ambassadors.
If the choice is between that and some isolationist dimwit busy with making America great again I truly hope for the latter.

Who would have thought that one day world peace would depend on the vote of the American redneck.....

Michael109 2d ago

Clinton's "dog ate my server", I can't (30 times) remember, didn't know what C meant on top of emails - why it means Coventry City, M'amm - excuses are the Dems trying to stagger over the line, everyone holding their noses. But even if she is elected, which is doubtful, this is not going away and she could be arrested as USA President.

The FBI will rue the day they did not recommend charges against her when they had the chance. She's make Tony Soprano look like the Dalia Lama.

CleanPool330 2d ago

The entire corrupt establishment want Clinton at all cost, so that they can continue fleecing the future and enslaving the entire world in created debt. All right minded individuals should this as a flashing red light to turn round and vote the other way.

[Sep 03, 2016] Gowdy FBI barely probed Clinton about intent on emails

Aug 25, 2016 | TheHill

FBI officials failed to aggressively question Hillary Clinton about her intentions in setting up a private email system, Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) claimed this week, exposing a potential key vulnerability in the bureau's investigation.

"I didn't see that many questions on that issue," Gowdy told Fox News's "The Kelly File" on Wednesday evening.

The detail could be crucial for Republican critics of the FBI's decision not to recommend charges be filed against the former secretary of State for mishandling classified information.

... ... ...

"I looked to see what witnesses were questioned on the issue of intent, including her," he said on Fox News. "I didn't see that many questions on that issue."

House Oversight Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz(R-Utah) has called for the FBI to create unclassified versions of the Clinton case file that it gave to Congress, so that the material can be released publicly. Gowdy reiterated the call on Fox News.

"There's no reason in the world you could not and should not be able to look at the same witness interviews that I had to go to Washington and look at in a classified setting," he said.

[Sep 02, 2016] FBI Releases Full Report Into Hillary Clinton Email Probe Zero Hedge

Sep 02, 2016 | www.zerohedge.com

Just as we predicted on a sleepy Friday afternoon ahead of a long weekend, The FBI has released a detailed report on its investigation into Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server while she was secretary of state, as well as a summary of her interview with agents, providing, what The Washington Post says is the most thorough look yet at the probe that has dogged the campaign of the Democratic presidential nominee.

Official FBI Statement:

Today the FBI is releasing a summary of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's July 2, 2016 interview with the FBI concerning allegations that classified information was improperly stored or transmitted on a personal e-mail server she used during her tenure .

We also are releasing a factual summary of the FBI's investigation into this matter. We are making these materials available to the public in the interest of transparency and in response to numerous Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests.

Appropriate redactions have been made for classified information or other material exempt from disclosure under FOIA. Additional information related to this investigation that the FBI releases in the future will be placed on The Vault, the FBI's electronic FOIA library.

As The Washington Post adds, the documents released total 58 pages, though large portions and sometimes entire pages are redacted.

FBI Director James B. Comey announced in July that his agency would not recommend criminal charges against Clinton for her use of a private email server. Comey said that Clinton and her staffers were "extremely careless" in how they treated classified information, but investigators did not find they intended to mishandle such material. Nor did investigators uncover exacerbating factors - like efforts to obstruct justice - that often lead to charges in similar cases, Comey said.

The FBI turned over to several Congressional committees documents related to the probe and required they only be viewed by those with appropriate security clearances, even though not all of the material was classified, legislators and their staffers have said.

Those documents included an investigative report and summaries of interviews with more than a dozen senior Clinton staffers, other State Department officials, former secretary of state Colin Powell and at least one other person. The documents released Friday appear to be but a fraction of those.

...

Clinton campaign spokesman Brian Fallon has said turning over the documents was "an extraordinarily rare step that was sought solely by Republicans for the purposes of further second-guessing the career professionals at the FBI."

But he has said if the material were going to be shared outside the Justice Department, "they should be released widely so that the public can see them for themselves, rather than allow Republicans to mischaracterize them through selective, partisan leaks."

Though Fallon seems to have gotten his wish, the public release of the documents will undoubtedly draw more attention to a topic that seems to have fueled negative perceptions of Clinton . A recent Washington Post-ABC News poll found 41 percent of Americans had a favorable impression of Clinton, while 56 percent had an unfavorable one.

Key Excerpts...

  • *CLINTON DENIED USING PRIVATE EMAIL TO AVOID FEDERAL RECORDS ACT
  • *CLINTON KNEW SHE HAD DUTY TO PRESERVE FEDERAL RECORDS: FBI
  • *COLIN POWELL WARNED CLINTON PRIVATE E-MAILS COULD BE PUBLIC:FBI
  • *FBI SAYS CLINTON LAWYERS UNABLE TO LOCATE ANY OF 13 DEVICES
  • *AT LEAST 100 STATE DEPT. WORKERS HAD CLINTON'S E-MAIL ADDRESS
  • CLINTON SAID SHE NEVER DELETED, NOR INSTRUCTED ANYONE TO DELETE, HER EMAIL TO AVOID COMPLYING WITH FEDERAL RECORDS LAWS OR FBI OR STATE REQUESTS FOR INFORMATION
  • CLINTON AIDES SAID SHE FREQUENTLY REPLACED HER BLACKBERRY PHONE AND THE WHEREABOUTS OF THE OLD DEVICE WOULD "FREQUENTLY BECOME UNKOWN"
  • CLINTON CONTACTED POWELL IN JANUARY 2009 TO INQUIRE ABOUT HIS USE OF A BLACKBERRY WHILE IN OFFICE; POWELL ADVISED CLINTON TO 'BE VERY CAREFUL
  • Hillary Clinton used 13 mobile devices and 5 iPads to access clintonemail.com. The FBI only had access to 2 of the iPads and The FBI found no evidence of hacking on those 2...

    And here is the email from Colin Powell telling her that emails would need to be part of the "government records" ...

    And here is Clinton denying that she used a private server to "avoid [the] Federal Records Act" as she just assumed that "based on her practice of emailing staff on their state.gov accounts, [that] communications were captured by State systems." Yes, well what about the "official" communications had with people outside of the State Department? Did retention of those emails ever cross Hillary's mind? * * * Full Report below...

    Hillary Clinton FBI Part 1 of 2

    [Jul 20, 2016] FBI Agents Silenced on Hillary Probe

    Notable quotes:
    "... FBI agents who worked on the investigation of Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server reportedly had to sign an unusual non-disclosure form banning them from talking about the case unless they were called to testify. ..."
    "... Unnamed sources tell the New York Post they'd never heard of the special form - known as a "case briefing acknowledgment" - being used before, though all agents initially have to sign nondisclosure agreements to obtain security clearance. ..."
    Jul 13, 2016 | www.newsmax.com

    FBI agents who worked on the investigation of Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server reportedly had to sign an unusual non-disclosure form banning them from talking about the case unless they were called to testify.

    Unnamed sources tell the New York Post they'd never heard of the special form - known as a "case briefing acknowledgment" - being used before, though all agents initially have to sign nondisclosure agreements to obtain security clearance.

    "This is very, very unusual. I've never signed one, never circulated one to others," one unnamed retired FBI chief tells the Post. "I have never heard of such a form. Sounds strange," an anonymous FBI agent said.

    The Post additionally reports some FBI agents are disappointed that Director James Comey decided against recommending that charges be brought against Clinton for her mishandling of classified information.

    "FBI agents believe there was an inside deal put in place after the [Attorney General] Loretta Lynch/Bill Clinton tarmac meeting" just hours before the release of a House report on the Benghazi, Libya terror attack in 2012, one unnamed source tells the Post.

    Another Justice Department source tells the newspaper he was "furious" with Comey, deriding him for having "managed to piss off right and left."

    [Jul 12, 2016] FBI s Critique of Hillary Clinton Is a Ready-Made Attack Ad

    Notable quotes:
    "... Hillary Clinton may not be indicted on criminal charges over her handling of classified email, but the F.B.I. director, James B. Comey, all but indicted her judgment and competence on Tuesday - two vital pillars of her presidential candidacy - and in the kind of terms that would be politically devastating in a normal election year. ..."
    www.nytimes.com

    Hillary Clinton may not be indicted on criminal charges over her handling of classified email, but the F.B.I. director, James B. Comey, all but indicted her judgment and competence on Tuesday - two vital pillars of her presidential candidacy - and in the kind of terms that would be politically devastating in a normal election year.

    ... ... ...

    To her charge that he is "reckless," Mr. Trump may now respond by citing Mr. Comey's rebuke: that Mrs. Clinton and her team "were extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information."

    To her promises to defend the United States, Mr. Trump may now retort with Mr. Comey's warning that "it is possible that hostile actors gained access" to Mrs. Clinton's email account and the top secret information it contained.

    And to her reproofs about his temperament and responsibility, Mr. Trump may now point to Mr. Comey's finding that "there is evidence of potential violations of the statutes" on handling classified information - though Mr. Comey said that other factors, like Mrs. Clinton's intent, argued against criminal charges.


    Worst of all was the totality of Mr. Comey's judgment about Mrs. Clinton's judgment.

    She is running as a supremely competent candidate and portraying Mr. Trump, in essence, as irresponsible and dangerous. Yet the director of the F.B.I. basically just called her out for having committed one of the most irresponsible moves in the modern history of the State Department.

    ... ... ...

    Her clearest selling point - that she, unlike Mr. Trump, can manage challenging relationships with allies and adversaries - has now been undercut because she personally mismanaged the safeguarding of national security information.

    [Jul 11, 2016] 5 Reasons The Comey Hearing Was The Worst Education In Criminal Justice The American Public Has Ever Had by Seth Abramson

    Highly recommended!
    Notable quotes:
    "... The reality is that prosecutors don't normally consider the legislative history or possible unconstitutionality of criminal statutes. Why? Because that's not their job. ..."
    "... We can say, accurately, that the judgment of the FBI in its investigation into Clinton and her associates ― and Comey confirmed Clinton was indeed a "subject" of the investigation ― is that Clinton is a criminal. ..."
    "... whether criminal statutes on the books had been violated ..."
    "... criminal statutes had been violated ..."
    "... So, my first point: for Comey to imply that there is any prosecutor in America uncomfortable with the "constitutionality" of criminal statutes predicated on "negligent," "reckless," or "knowing" mental states is not just laughable but an insult to both the prosecutorial class and our entire criminal justice system. Whatever issue Comey may have had with the felony statute he agrees Clinton violated, that wasn't it. ..."
    "... specific intent ..."
    "... Black's Law Dictionary ..."
    "... First he asked, "What would other prosecutors do?" That's not a question prosecutors are charged to ask, and we now see why: as Comey himself concedes, countless prosecutors have already come out in public to say that, had they been investigating Clinton, they would have prosecuted her. A standard for prosecutorial discretion in which you weigh what others in your shoes might do based on some sort of a census leads immediately to madness, not just for the reasons I'm articulating here but many others too numerous to go into in detail in this space. ..."
    "... Comey found credible that Clinton had created her private basement server set-up purely out of "convenience"; yet he also found that old servers, once replaced, were "stored and decommissioned in various ways." Wait, "various ways"? If Clinton was trying to create a streamlined, convenient personal process for data storage, why were things handled so haphazardly that Comey himself would say that the servers were dealt with "in various ways" over time? ..."
    "... And indeed, the evidence Comey turned up showed that Clinton's staff was aware ― was repeatedly and systematically made aware ― that the Secretary's set-up had the effect of evading FOIA requests. And Clinton was, by her own admission, clear with her inferiors that "avoiding access to the personal" was key to her private basement-server set-up. That's very different from "convenience." ..."
    "... completely different and more stringent protocols and requirements for data storage ..."
    "... simply by looking at their headers ..."
    "... every other action ..."
    www.huffingtonpost.com
    1. According to Comey, Clinton committed multiple federal felonies and misdemeanors. Many people will miss this in the wash of punditry from non-attorneys in the mainstream media that has followed Comey's public remarks and Congressional testimony.

    The issue for Comey wasn't that Clinton hadn't committed any federal crimes, but that in his personal opinion the federal felony statute Clinton violated (18 U.S.C. 793f) has been too rarely applied for him to feel comfortable applying it to Clinton. This is quite different from saying that no crime was committed; rather, Comey's position is that crimes were committed, but he has decided not to prosecute those crimes because (a) the statute he focused most on has only been used once in the last century (keeping in mind how relatively rare cases like these are in the first instance, and therefore how rarely we would naturally expect a statute like this to apply in any case), and (b) he personally believes that the statute in question might be unconstitutional because, as he put it, it might punish people for crimes they didn't specifically intend to commit (specifically, it requires only a finding of "gross negligence," which Comey conceded he could prove). Comey appears to have taken the extraordinary step of researching the legislative history of this particular criminal statute in order to render this latter assessment.

    The reality is that prosecutors don't normally consider the legislative history or possible unconstitutionality of criminal statutes. Why? Because that's not their job. Their job is to apply the laws as written, unless and until they are superseded by new legislation or struck down by the judicial branch. In Comey's case, this deep dive into the history books is even more puzzling as, prior to Attorney General Loretta Lynch unethically having a private meeting with Bill Clinton on an airport tarmac, Comey wasn't even slated to be the final arbiter of whether Clinton was prosecuted or not. He would have been expected, in a case like this, to note to the Department of Justice's career prosecutors that the FBI had found evidence of multiple federal crimes, and then leave it to their prosecutorial discretion as to whether or not to pursue a prosecution. But more broadly, we must note that when Comey gave his public justification for not bringing charges ― a public justification in itself highly unusual, and suggestive of the possibility that Comey knew his inaction was extraordinary, and therefore felt the need to defend himself in equally extraordinary fashion ― he did not state the truth: that Clinton had committed multiple federal crimes per statutes presently on the books, and that the lack of a recommendation for prosecution was based not on the lack of a crime but the lack of prosecutorial will (or, as he might otherwise have put it, the exercise of prosecutorial discretion).

    The danger here is that Americans will now believe many untrue things about the executive branch of their government. For instance, watching Comey's testimony one might believe that if the executive branch exercises its prosecutorial discretion and declines to prosecute crimes it determines have been committed, it means no crimes were committed. In fact, what it means (in a case like this) is that crimes were committed but will not be prosecuted. We can say, accurately, that the judgment of the FBI in its investigation into Clinton and her associates ― and Comey confirmed Clinton was indeed a "subject" of the investigation ― is that Clinton is a criminal. She simply shouldn't, in the view of the FBI, be prosecuted for her crimes. Prosecutorial discretion of this sort is relatively common, and indeed should be much more common when it comes to criminal cases involving poor Americans; instead, we find it most commonly in law enforcement's treatment of Americans with substantial personal, financial, sociocultural, and legal resources.

    Americans might also wrongly believe, watching Comey's testimony, that it is the job of executive-branch employees to determine which criminal statutes written by the legislative branch will be acknowledged. While one could argue that this task does fall to the head of the prosecuting authority in a given instance ― here, Attorney General Loretta Lynch; had an independent prosecutor been secured in this case, as should have happened, that person, instead ― one could not argue that James Comey's role in this scenario was to decide which on-the-books criminal statutes matter and which don't. Indeed, Comey himself said, during his announcement of the FBI's recommendation, that his role was to refer the case to the DOJ for a "prosecutive decision" ― in other words, the decision on whether to prosecute wasn't his. His job was only to determine whether criminal statutes on the books had been violated.

    By this test, Comey didn't just not do the job he set out to do, he wildly and irresponsibly exceeded it, to the point where its original contours were unrecognizable. To be blunt: by obscuring, in his public remarks and advice to the DOJ, the fact that criminal statutes had been violated ― in favor of observing, more broadly, that there should be no prosecution ― he made it not just easy but a fait accompli for the media and workaday Americans to think that not only would no prosecution commence, but that indeed there had been no statutory violations.

    Which there were.

    Americans might also wrongly take at face value Comey's contention that the felony statute Clinton violated was unconstitutional ― on the grounds that it criminalizes behavior that does not include a specific intent to do wrong. This is, as every attorney knows, laughable. Every single day in America, prosecutors prosecute Americans ― usually but not exclusively poor people ― for crimes whose governing statutes lack the requirement of "specific intent." Ever heard of negligent homicide? That's a statute that doesn't require what lawyers call (depending on the jurisdiction) an "intentional" or "purposeful" mental state. Rather, it requires "negligence." Many other statutes require only a showing of "recklessness," which likewise is dramatically distinct from "purposeful" or "intentional" conduct. And an even larger number of statutes have a "knowing" mental state, which Comey well knows ― but the average American does not ― is a general- rather than specific-intent mental state (mens rea, in legal terms).

    And the term "knowingly" is absolutely key to the misdemeanors Comey appears to concede Clinton committed, but has declined to charge her for.

    To discuss what "knowingly" means in the law, I'll start with an example. When I practiced criminal law in New Hampshire, it was a crime punishable by up to a year in jail to "knowingly cause unprivileged physical contact with another person." The three key elements to this particular crime, which is known as Simple Assault, are "knowingly," "unprivileged," and "physical contact." If a prosecutor can prove each of these elements beyond a reasonable doubt, the defendant could, at the discretion of a judge, find themselves locked in a cage for a year. "Physical contact" means just about exactly what you'd expect, as does "unprivileged" ― contact for which you have no claim of privilege, such as self-defense, defense of another, permission of the alleged victim, and so on. But what the heck does "knowingly" mean? Well, as any law student can tell you, it means that you were aware of the physical act you were engaged in, even if you didn't intend the consequences that act caused. For instance, say you're in the pit at a particularly raucous speed-metal concert, leaping about, as one does, in close proximity with many other people. Now let's say that after one of your leaps you land on a young woman's foot and break it. If charged with Simple Assault, your defense won't be as to your mental state, because you were "knowingly" leaping about, even if you intended no harm in doing so. Instead, your defense will probably be that the contact (which you also wouldn't contest) was "privileged," because the young lady had implicitly taken on, as had you, the risks of being in a pit in the middle of a speed-metal concert. See the difference between knowingly engaging in a physical act that has hurtful consequences, and "intending" or having as your "purpose" those consequences? Just so, I've seen juveniles prosecuted for Simple Assault for throwing food during an in-school cafeteria food fight; in that instance, no one was hurt, nor did anyone intend to hurt anybody, but "unprivileged physical contact" was "knowingly" made all the same (in this case, via the instrument of, say, a chicken nugget).

    So, my first point: for Comey to imply that there is any prosecutor in America uncomfortable with the "constitutionality" of criminal statutes predicated on "negligent," "reckless," or "knowing" mental states is not just laughable but an insult to both the prosecutorial class and our entire criminal justice system. Whatever issue Comey may have had with the felony statute he agrees Clinton violated, that wasn't it.

    What about the misdemeanor statute?

    Well, there's now terrifying evidence available for public consumption to the effect that Director Comey doesn't understand the use of the word "knowingly" in the law ― indeed, understands it less than even a law student in his or her first semester would. Just over an hour (at 1:06) into the six-hour C-SPAN video of Comey's Congressional testimony, Representative Cynthia Lummis (R-WY) makes a brief but absolutely unimpeachable case that, using the term "knowingly" as I have here and as it is used in every courtroom in America, Secretary Clinton committed multiple federal misdemeanors inasmuch as she, per the relevant statute (Title 18 U.S.C. 1924), "became possessed of documents or materials containing classified information of the United States....and knowingly removed such documents or materials without authority and with the intent to retain such documents or materials at an unauthorized location." Comey, misunderstanding the word "knowingly" in a way any law school student would scream at their TV over, states that the FBI would still, under that statutory language, need to prove specific intent to convict Clinton of a Title 18 U.S.C. 1924 violation. Lummis points out that Comey is dead wrong ― and she's right, he is wrong. Per the above, all Clinton had to be aware of is that (a) she was in possession of classified documents, and (b) she had removed them to an unauthorized location. Comey admits these two facts are true, and yet he won't prosecute because he's added a clause that's not in the statute. I can't emphasize this enough: Comey makes clear with his answers throughout his testimony that Clinton committed this federal misdemeanor, but equally makes clear that he didn't charge her with it because he didn't understand the statute. (At 1:53 in the video linked to above, Representative Ken Buck of Colorado goes back to the topic of Title 18 U.S.C. 1924, locking down that Comey is indeed deliberately adding language to that federal criminal statute that quite literally is not there.)

    Yes, it's true. Watch the video for yourself, look up the word "knowingly" in Black's Law Dictionary, and you'll see that I'm right. This is scary stuff for an attorney like me, or really for any of us, to see on television ― a government attorney with less knowledge of criminal law than a first-year law student.

    2. Comey has dramatically misrepresented what prosecutorial discretion looks like. The result of this is that Americans will fundamentally misunderstand our adversarial system of justice.

    Things like our Fourth and Fifth Amendment are part and parcel of our "adversarial" system of justice. We could have elected, as a nation, to have an "inquisitorial" system of justice ― as some countries in Europe, with far fewer protections for criminal defendants, do ― but we made the decision that the best truth-seeking mechanism is one in which two reflexively zealous advocates, a prosecutor and a defense attorney, push their cases to the utmost of their ability (within certain well-established ethical strictures).

    James Comey, in his testimony before Congress, left the impression that his job as a prosecutor was to weigh his ability to prove a case beyond a reasonable doubt not as a prosecutor, but as a member of a prospective jury. That's not how things work in America; it certainly, and quite spectacularly, isn't how it works for poor black men. In fact, what American prosecutors are charged to do is imagine a situation in which (a) they present their case to a jury as zealously as humanly possible within the well-established ethical code of the American courtroom, (b) all facts and inferences are taken by that jury in the prosecution's favor, and then (c) whether, given all those conditions, there is a reasonable likelihood that all twelve jurors would vote for a conviction.

    That is not the standard James Comey used to determine whether to prosecute Hillary Clinton.

    What Comey did was something else altogether.

    First he asked, "What would other prosecutors do?" That's not a question prosecutors are charged to ask, and we now see why: as Comey himself concedes, countless prosecutors have already come out in public to say that, had they been investigating Clinton, they would have prosecuted her. A standard for prosecutorial discretion in which you weigh what others in your shoes might do based on some sort of a census leads immediately to madness, not just for the reasons I'm articulating here but many others too numerous to go into in detail in this space.

    The second thing Comey did was ask, "Am I guaranteed to win this case at trial?" Would that this slowed the roll of prosecutors when dealing with poor black men! Instead, as I discuss later on, prosecutors ― via the blunt instrument of the grand jury ― usually use the mere fact of misdemeanor or felony charges against a defendant as a mechanism for ending a case short of trial. Even prosecutors who ultimately drop a case will charge (misdemeanor) or indict (felony) it first, if only to give themselves time ― because defendants do have speedy trial rights, and statutes of limitation do sometimes intercede ― to plan their next move.

    Third, Comey imagined his case at trial through the following lens: "How would we do at trial if the jury took every fact and presumption ― as we already have ― in Clinton's favor?" Indeed, I'm having more than a hard time ― actually an impossible time ― finding a single unknown or unclear fact that Comey took in a light unfavorable to Clinton (including, incredibly, the facts that became unknowable because of Clinton's own actions and evasions). Instead, Hillary was given the benefit of the doubt at every turn, so much so that it was obvious that the only evidence of "intent" Comey would accept was a full confession from Clinton. That's something prosecutors rarely get, and certainly (therefore) never make a prerequisite for prosecution. But Comey clearly did here.

    I have never seen this standard used in the prosecution of a poor person. Not once.

    3. Comey left the indelible impression, with American news-watchers, that prosecutors only prosecute specific-intent crimes, and will only find a sufficient mens rea (mental state) if and when a defendant has confessed. Imagine, for a moment, if police officers only shot unarmed black men who were in the process of confessing either verbally ("I'm about to pull a gun on you!") or physically (e.g., by assaulting the officer). Impossible to imagine, right? That's because that's not how this works; indeed, that's not how any of this works. Prosecutors, like police officers, are, in seeking signs of intent, trained to read ― and conceding here that some of them do it poorly ― contextual clues that precede, are contemporaneous with, and/or follow the commission of a crime.

    But this apparently doesn't apply to Hillary Clinton.

    It would be easier to identify the contextual clues that don't suggest Clinton had consciousness of guilt than those that do ― as there are exponentially more of the latter than the former. But let's do our best, and consider just a few of the clear signs that Clinton and her team, judging them solely by their words and actions, knew that what they were doing was unlawful.

    For instance, Clinton repeatedly said she used one server and only one device ― not that she thought that that was the correct information, but that she knew it was. Yet the FBI found, per Comey's July 5th statement, that Clinton used "several different servers" and "numerous mobile devices." So either Clinton didn't know the truth but pretended in all her public statements that she did; or she was given bad information which she then repeated uncritically, in which case a prosecutor would demand to know from whom she received that information (as surely that person would know they'd spread misinformation); or she knew the truth and was lying. A prosecutor would want clear, on-the-record answers on these issues; instead, Comey let other FBI agents have an unrecorded, untranscripted interview with Clinton that he himself didn't bother to attend. It's not even clear that that interview was much considered by the FBI; Comey declared his decision just a few dozen hours after the interview was over, and word leaked that there would be no indictment just two hours after the interview. Which, again, incredibly ― and not in keeping with any law enforcement policy regarding subject interviews I'm aware of ― was unrecorded, untranscripted, unsworn, and unattended by the lead prosecutor.

    This in the context of a year-long investigation for which Clinton was the primary subject. Since when is an hours-long interview with an investigation's subject so immaterial to the charging decision? And since when is such an interview treated as such a casual event? Since never. At least for poor people.

    And since when are false exculpatory statements not strong evidence of intent?

    Since never - at least for poor people.

    Comey found credible that Clinton had created her private basement server set-up purely out of "convenience"; yet he also found that old servers, once replaced, were "stored and decommissioned in various ways." Wait, "various ways"? If Clinton was trying to create a streamlined, convenient personal process for data storage, why were things handled so haphazardly that Comey himself would say that the servers were dealt with "in various ways" over time? Just so, Comey would naturally want to test Clinton's narrative by seeing whether or not all FOIA requests were fully responded to by Clinton and her staff in the four years she was the head of the State Department. Surely, Clinton and her staff had been fully briefed on their legal obligations under FOIA ― that's provable ― so if Clinton's "convenience" had caused a conflict with the Secretary's FOIA obligations that would have been immediately obvious to both Clinton and her staff, and would have been remedied immediately if the purpose of the server was not to avoid FOIA requests but mere convenience. At a minimum, Comey would find evidence (either hard or testimonial) that such conversations occurred. And indeed, the evidence Comey turned up showed that Clinton's staff was aware ― was repeatedly and systematically made aware ― that the Secretary's set-up had the effect of evading FOIA requests. And Clinton was, by her own admission, clear with her inferiors that "avoiding access to the personal" was key to her private basement-server set-up. That's very different from "convenience."

    Even if Comey believed that "avoiding access to the personal," rather than "convenience," was the reason for Clinton's server set-up, that explanation would have imploded under the weight of evidence Clinton, her team, and her attorneys exercised no due caution whatsoever in determining what was "personal" and what was not personal when they were wiping those servers clean. If Clinton's concern was privacy, there's no evidence that much attention was paid to accurately and narrowly protecting that interest ― rather, the weight of the evidence suggests that the aim, at all times, was to keep the maximum amount of information away from FOIA discovery, not just "personal" information but (as Comey found) a wealth of work-related information.

    But let's pull back for a moment and be a little less legalistic. Clinton claimed the reason for her set-up was ― exclusively ― "convenience"; nevertheless, Comey said it took "thousands of hours of painstaking effort" to "piece back together" exactly what Clinton was up to. Wouldn't that fact alone give the lie to the claim that this system was more "convenient" than the protocols State already had in place? "Millions of email fragments ended up in the server's 'slack space'," Comey said of Clinton's "convenient" email-storage arrangement. See the contradiction? How would "millions of email fragments ending up in a server's 'slack space'" in any way have served Clinton's presumptive desire for both (a) convenience, (b) FOIA complicance, (c) a securing of her privacy, and (d) compliance with State Department email-storage regulations? Would any reasonable person have found this set-up convenient? And if not ― and Comey explicitly found not ― why in the world didn't that help to establish the real intent of Clinton's private basement servers? Indeed, had Clinton intended on complying with FOIA, presumably her own staff would have had to do the very same painstaking work it took the FBI a year to do. But FOIA requests come in too fast and furious, at State, for Clinton's staff to do the work it took the FBI a year to do in a matter of days; wouldn't this in itself establish that Clinton and her staff had no ability, and therefore well knew they had no intention, of acceding to any of the Department's hundreds or even thousands of annual FOIA requests in full? And wouldn't ignoring all those requests be not just illegal but "inconvenient" in the extreme? And speak to the question of intent?

    It took Clinton two years to hand over work emails she was supposed to hand over the day she left office; and during that time, she and her lawyers, some of whom appear to have looked at classified material without clearance, deleted thousands of "personal" emails ― many of which turned out the be exactly the sort of work emails she was supposed to turn over the day she left State. In this situation, an actor acting in good faith would have (a) erred on the side of caution in deleting emails, (b) responded with far, far more alacrity to the valid demands of State to see all work-related emails, and (c) having erroneously deleted certain emails, would have rushed to correct the mistake themselves rather than seeing if they could get away with deleting ― mind you ― not just work emails but work emails with (in several instances) classified information in them. How in the world was none of this taken toward the question of intent? Certainly, it was taken toward the finding of "gross negligence" Comey made, but how in the world was none of it seen as relevant to Clinton's specific intent also? Why does it seem the only evidence of specific intent Comey would've looked at was a smoking gun? Does he realize how few criminal cases would ever be brought against anyone in America if a "smoking gun" standard was in effect? Does anyone realize how many poor black men wouldn't be in prison if that standard was in effect for them as well as Secretary Clinton?

    4. Comey made it seem that the amount and quality of prosecutorial consideration he gave Clinton was normal. The mere fact that Comey gave public statements justifying his prosecutorial discretion misleads the public into thinking that, say, poor black men receive this level of care when prosecutors are choosing whether to indict them.

    While at least he had the good grace to call the fact of his making a public statement "unusual" ― chalking it up to the "intense public interest" that meant Clinton (and the public) "deserved" an explanation for his behavior ― that grace ultimately obscured, rather than underscored, that what Comey did in publicly justifying his behavior is unheard of in cases involving poor people. In the real America, prosecutors are basically unaccountable to anyone but their bosses in terms of their prosecutorial discretion, as cases in which abuse of prosecutorial discretion is successfully alleged are vanishingly rare. Many are the mothers, fathers, sisters, and brothers of poor black men who would love to have had their sons' (or brothers', or fathers') over-charged criminal cases explained to them with the sort of care and detail Hillary Clinton naturally receives when she's being investigated. Clinton and the public "deserve" prosecutorial transparency when the defendant is a Clinton; just about no one else deserves this level of not just transparency but also ― given the year-long length of the FBI investigation ― prosecutorial and investigative caution.

    What's amazing is how little use Comey actually made of all the extra time and effort. For instance, on July 5th he said that every email the FBI uncovered was sent to the "owning" organization to see if they wanted to "up-classify" it ― in other words, declare that it should have been classified at the time it was sent and/or received, even if not marked that way at the time. One might think Comey would want this information, the better to determine Clinton's intent with respect to those emails (i.e., given Clinton's training, knowledge, and experience, how frequently did she "miss" the classified nature of an email, relative to the assessment of owning agencies that a given email was effectively and/or should have been considered classified ― even if not marked so ― at the time Clinton handled it?) Keep in mind, here, that certain types of information, as Clinton without a doubt knew, are "born classified" whether marked as such or not. And yet, just two days after July 5th, Comey testified before Congress that he "didn't pay much attention" to "up-classified" emails. Why? Because, said Comey, they couldn't tell him anything about Clinton's intent. Bluntly, this is an astonishing and indeed embarrassing statement for any prosecutor to make.

    Whereas every day knowledge and motives are imparted to poor black men that are, as the poet Claudia Rankine has observed, purely the product of a police officer's "imagination," the actual and indisputable knowledge and motives and ― yes ― responsibilities held by Clinton were "downgraded" by Comey to that of merely an average American. That is, despite the fact that Clinton was one of the most powerful people on Earth, charged with managing an agency that collects among the highest number of classified pieces of information of any agency anywhere; despite the fact that Clinton's agency had the strictest policies for data storage for this very reason; despite the fact that State is, as Clinton well knew, daily subjected to FOIA requests; despite all this, Comey actually said the following: "Like many email users, Secretary Clinton periodically deleted emails..."

    What?

    How in the world does the "many email users" standard come into play here? Clinton's server, unlike anyone else's server, was set up in a way that permitted no archiving, an arrangement that one now imagines led (in part) to the person who set up that server taking the Fifth more than a hundred times in interviews with the FBI; even assuming Clinton didn't know, and didn't request, for her server to be set up in this astonishing way ― a way, again, that her own employees believe could incriminate them ― how in the world could she have been sanguine about deleting emails "like many email users" when the agency she headed had completely different and more stringent protocols and requirements for data storage than just about any government agency on Earth? Just so, once it was clear that Clinton had deleted (per Comey) "thousands of emails that were work-related" instead of turning them over to State, in what universe can no intent be implied from the fact that her attorneys purged 30,000 emails simply by looking at their headers? At what point does Clinton, as former Secretary of State, begin to have ill intent imputed to her by not directing her attorneys to actually read emails before permanently destroying them and making them unavailable to the FBI as evidence? If you were in her situation, and instead of saying to your team either (a) "don't delete any more emails," or (b) "if you delete any emails, make sure you've read them in full first," would you expect anyone to impute "no specific intent" to your behavior?

    The result: despite saying she never sent or received emails on her private basement server that were classified "at the time," the FBI found that 52 email chains on Clinton's server ― including 110 emails ― contained information that was classified at the time (eight chains contained "top secret" information; 36, "secret" information; and another eight "confidential" information). Moreover, Clinton's team wrongly purged ― at a minimum ― "thousands" of work-related emails. (And I'm putting aside entirely here the 2,000 emails on Clinton's server that were later "up-classified.") At what point does this harm become foreseeable, and not seeing it ― when you're one of the best-educated, smartest, most experienced public servants in U.S. history, as your political team keeps reminding us ― become evidence of "intent"? Comey's answer? Never.

    Indeed, Comey instead makes the positively fantastical observation that "none [of the emails Clinton didn't turn over but was supposed to] were intentionally deleted." The problem is, by Comey's own admission all of those emails were intentionally deleted, under circumstances in which the problems with that deletion would not just have been evident to "any reasonable person" but specifically were clear ― the context proves it ― to Clinton herself. During her four years as Secretary of State Clinton routinely expressed concern to staff about her own and others' email-storage practices, establishing beyond any doubt that not only was Clinton's literal key-pressing deliberate ― the "knowing" standard ― but also its repeated, systemic effect was fully appreciated by her in advance. Likewise, that her attorneys were acting entirely on their own prerogative, without her knowledge, is a claim no jury would credit.

    Clinton's attorneys worked Clinton's case in consultation with Clinton ― that's how things work. In other words, Clinton's lawyers are not rogue actors here. So when Comey says, "They [Clinton and her team] deleted all emails they did not produce for State, and the lawyers then cleaned their devices in such a way as to preclude complete forensic recovery," we have to ask, what possible reason would an attorney have for wiping a server entirely within their control to ensure that no future court order could access the permanently deleted information? In what universe is such behavior not actual consciousness of guilt with respect to the destruction of evidence? Because we must be clear: Comey isn't saying Clinton and her lawyers accidentally put these emails outside even a hypothetical future judicial review; they did so intentionally.

    There's that word again.

    The result of these actions? The same as every other action Clinton took that Comey somehow attributes no intent to: a clear legal benefit to Clinton and a frustration, indeed an obstruction, of the FBI's investigation. As Comey said on July 5th, the FBI can't know how many emails are "gone" (i.e., permanently) because of Clinton and her team's intentional acts after-the-fact. So Comey is quite literally telling us that the FBI couldn't conclude their investigation with absolute confidence that they had all the relevant facts, and that the reason for this was the intentional destruction of evidence by the subject of the investigation at a time when there was no earthly reason to destroy evidence except to keep it from the FBI.

    In case you're wondering, no, you don't need a legal degree to see the problem there.

    As an attorney, I can't imagine destroying evidence at a time I knew it was the subject of a federal investigation. And if I ever were to do something like that, I would certainly assume that all such actions would later be deemed "intentional" by law enforcement, as my intent would be inferred from my training, knowledge, and experience as an attorney, as well as my specific awareness of a pending federal investigation in which the items I was destroying might later become key evidence. That Clinton and her team repeatedly (and falsely) claimed the FBI investigation was a mere "security review" ― yet another assertion whose falseness was resoundingly noted by Comey in his public statements ― was clearly a transparent attempt to negate intent in destroying those emails. (The theory being, "Well, yes, I destroyed possible evidence just by looking at email headers, but this was all just a 'security review,' right? Not a federal investigation? Even though I knew the three grounds for referral of the case to the FBI, and knew that only one of them involved anything like a 'security review'?")

    And certainly, none of this explains Comey's (again) gymnastic avoidance of stating the obvious: that crimes were committed.

    Listen to his language on July 5th: "Although we did not find clear evidence that Clinton or her colleagues intended to violate laws governing the handling of classified information" (emphasis in original) ― actually, let's stop there. You'd expect the second half of that sentence to be something like, "...they nevertheless did violate those laws, despite not intending to." It's the natural continuation of the thought. Instead, Comey, who had prepared his remarks in advance, finished the thought this way: "....there is evidence that they were extremely careless with very sensitive, highly classified information" (emphasis in original).

    Note that Comey now uses the phrase "extremely careless" instead of "gross negligence," despite using the latter phrase ― a legal phrase ― at the beginning of his July 5th remarks. That matters because at the beginning of those remarks he conceded "gross negligence" would lead to a statutory violation. So why the sudden shift in language, when from a legal standpoint "extreme carelessness" and "gross negligence" are synonymous ― both indicating the presence of a duty of care, the failure to meet that duty, and moreover a repeated failure on this score? Comey also avoids finishing his sentence with the obvious thought: that they may not have intended to violate criminal statutes, but they did nonetheless. Remember that, just like our hypothetical raver may not have intended to commit a Simple Assault by stepping on that poor young woman's foot, he nevertheless could be found to have done so; just so, had Comey accepted the statute as written, Clinton's "gross negligence" would have forced him to end the above sentence with the finding of a statutory violation, even if there had been no "specific intent" to do so.

    This is how the law works. For poor black men, just not for rich white women.

    5. Comey, along with the rest of Congress, left the impression, much like the Supreme Court did in 2000, that legal analyses are fundamentally political analyses. Not only is this untrue, it also is unspeakably damaging to both our legal system and Americans' understanding of that system's operations.

    I'm a staunch Democrat, but I'm also an attorney. Watching fellow Democrats twist themselves into pretzels to analyze Clinton's actions through a farcically slapdash legal framework, rather than merely acknowledging that Clinton is a human being and, like any human being, can both (a) commit crimes, and (b) be replaced on a political ticket if need be, makes me sick as both a Democrat and a lawyer. Just so, watching Republicans who had no issue with George W. Bush declaring unilateral war in contravention of international law, and who had no issue with the obviously illegal behavior of Scooter Libby in another recent high-profile intel-related criminal case, acting like the rule of law is anything they care about makes me sick. Our government is dirty as all get-out, but the one thing it's apparently clean of is anyone with both (a) legal training, and (b) a sense of the ethics that govern legal practice. Over and over during Comey's Congressional testimony I heard politicians noting their legal experience, and then going on to either shame their association with that august profession or honor it but (in doing so) call into question their inability or unwillingness to do so in other instances.

    When Comey says, "any reasonable person should have known" not to act as Clinton did, many don't realize he's quoting a legal standard ― the "reasonable person standard." A failure to meet that standard can be used to establish either negligence or recklessness in a court of law. But here, Clinton wasn't in the position of a "reasonable person" ― the average fellow or lady ― and Comey wasn't looking merely at a "reasonableness" standard, but rather a "purposeful" standard that requires Comey to ask all sorts of questions about Clinton's specific, fully contextualized situation and background that he doesn't appear to have asked. One might argue that, in keeping with Clinton's campaign theme, no one in American political history was more richly prepared ― by knowledge, training, experience, and innate gifts ― to know how to act properly in the situations Clinton found herself. That in those situations she failed to act even as a man or woman taken off the street and put in a similar situation would have acted is not indicative of innocence or a lack of specific intent, but the opposite. If a reasonable person wouldn't have done what Clinton did, the most exquisitely prepared person for the situations in which Clinton found herself must in fact have been providing prosecutors with prima facie evidence of intent by failing to meet even the lowest threshold for proper conduct. Comey knows this; any prosecutor knows this. Maybe a jury would disagree with Comey on this point, but his job is to assume that, if he zealously advocates for this extremely powerful circumstantial case, a reasonable jury, taking the facts in the light most favorable to the government, would see things his way.

    Look, I can't possibly summarize for anyone reading this the silly nonsense I have seen prosecutors indict people for; a common saying in the law is that the average grand jury "would indict a ham sandwich," and to be clear that happens not because the run-of-the-mill citizens who sit on grand juries are bloodthirsty, but because the habitual practice of American prosecutors is to indict first and ask questions later ― and because indictments are absurdly easy to acquire. In other words, I've seen thousands of poor people get over-charged for either nonsense or nothing at all, only to have their prosecutors attempt to leverage their flimsy cases into a plea deal to a lesser charge. By comparison, it is evident to every defense attorney of my acquaintance that I've spoken to that James Comey bent over backwards to not indict Hillary Clinton ― much like the hundreds of state and federal prosecutors who have bent over backwards not to indict police officers over the past few decades. Every attorney who's practiced in criminal courts for years can smell when the fix is in ― can hear and see when the court's usual actors are acting highly unusually ― and that's what's happened here. The tragedy is that it will convince Americans that our legal system is fundamentally about what a prosecutor feels they can and should be able to get away with, an answer informed largely, it will seem to many, by various attorneys' personal temperaments and political prejudices.

    No one in America who's dedicated their life to the law can feel any satisfaction with how Hillary Clinton's case was investigated or ultimately disposed of, no more than we can feel sanguine about prosecutors whose approach to poor black defendants is draconian and to embattled police officers positively beatific. What we need in Congress, and in prosecutor's offices, are men and women of principle who act in accordance with their ethical charge no matter the circumstances. While James Comey is not a political hack, and was not, I don't believe, in any sense acting conspiratorially in not bringing charges against Hillary Clinton, I believe that, much like SCOTUS did not decide in the 2000 voting rights case Bush v. Gore, Comey felt that this was a bad time for an executive-branch officer to interfere with the workings of domestic politics. Perhaps Comey had the best of intentions in not doing his duty; perhaps he thought letting voters, not prosecutors, decide the 2016 election was his civic duty. Many Democrats could wish the Supreme Court had felt the same way in 2000 with respect to the role of judges. But the fact remains that the non-indictment of Hillary Clinton is as much a stain on the fair and equal administration of justice as is the disparate treatment of poor black males at all stages of the criminal justice system. I witnessed the latter injustice close up, nearly every day, during my seven years working as a public defender; now America has seen the same thing, albeit on a very different stage, involving a defendant of a very different class and hue.

    To have prosecuted Clinton, said Comey, he would need to have seen "clearly intentional and willful mishandling of classified information, or vast quantities of information exposed in such a way as to support an inference of intentional misconduct, or....efforts to obstruct justice..." When Comey concludes, "we do not see those things here," America should ― and indeed must ― wonder what facts he could possibly be looking at, and, moreover, what understanding of his role in American life he could possibly be acting upon. The answers to these two questions would take us at least two steps forward in discussing how average Americans are treated by our increasingly dysfunctional system of justice.

    Seth Abramson is the Series Editor for Best American Experimental Writing (Wesleyan University) and the author, most recently, of DATA (BlazeVOX, 2016).

    [Jul 11, 2016] Letter signed by over 200 members of Congress demanding answers from FBI Director Comey

    Neoliberal MSM response to latest FBI director Comey testimony is a textbook example of brainwashing (or groupthink). It shows to me again that you need to go to the source watch at least the fragments of the testimony on YouTube. It deadly serious situation for Hillary. No person with even cursory knowledge of security can avoid thinking that she should be in jail. Republicans know it and will not let her off the hook. Probably special prosecutor will be appointed. See for example https://judiciary.house.gov/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/House-Letter-to-FBI-Director-1.pdf
    Now Comey is under strong fire and need to save his own skin. You can tell anything about Republican members of House of Representative, but it is now quite clear to me that several of them are brilliant former lawyers/prosecutor/judges.
    From now on they will block all attempt to swipe this matter under the carpet and unless Hillary withdraw they might try to implicate Obama in the cover-up (and they have facts: he recklessly corresponded with her on this account).
    They already requested all FBI files on Clinton. Soon they will have all the dirty laundering from Hillary server and FBI probably recovered most of it.
    From this point it is up-hill battle for Obama, and might well think about finding appropriate sacrificial lamp NOW. My impression is that she lost her chance to became the President. With FBI files in hand, In four month they can do so much damage that she would be better to take her toys and leave the playground.
    And this topic hopefully already influence super-delegates. I think her best option now is give Sanders a chance. Because the real threat now is not that she will go to jail. She belongs to the elite and is above the law. Now the real threat is that all her close associates might.
    judiciary.house.gov

    On Tuesday, the FBI assumed the role of prosecutor and not simply investigator and took the unprecedented act of proclaiming that no reasonable prosecutor would bring such a case. Based on the perception that a decision has been made by the FBI that has seemingly ignored facts that the FBI itself found in its own investigation, we have additional questions that are aimed at ensuring that the cloud which now hovers over our justice system is at least minimally pierced:

    1) As a former prosecutor, please explain your understanding of the legal difference between actions performed with "gross negligence" and those done "extremely carelessly." How did you determine that "extreme carelessness" did not equate to "gross negligence?"

    2) You said that no reasonable prosecutor would decide to prosecute the Clinton case on the evidence found by FBI agents during the Bureau's investigation over the past year. We have multiple former prosecutors in Congress, and it is not far-fetched for many of us to envision a successful prosecution of someone for doing far less than that which was committed by Secretary Clinton. Is your statement not an indictment and prejudgment against any Assistant United States Attorney who is now tasked with reviewing the evidence you presented Tuesday? In your judgment, does it not follow that you would think that a prosecutor who moved forward with the instant prosecution of Secretary Clinton would be "unreasonable?"

    3) Are you aware of any internal opinions by FBI agents or management who were intimately aware of the Clinton investigation which differed from your eventual decision to not recommend the case for prosecution?

    4) You mentioned that Top Secret Special Access Programs (SAPs) were included in emails sent and received by Secretary Clinton. SAP material is some of the most highly classified and controlled material of the U.S. Government. If an agency of the U.S. Government were to encounter similar information from a foreign adversary, it would be extremely valuable data for us to exploit. Did the FBI assess how SAP information, due to its controlled nature, ever made it onto unclassified systems that were not air-gapped or physically blocked from outside Internet access? Is it not "gross negligence" to permit such SAP data to leave the confines of the most protective and secure governmental enclaves? Or even "intentional" conduct that allowed that to happen?

    5) You mentioned that this investigation stemmed from a referral from the Inspector General of the Intelligence Community to determine whether classified information had been transmitted on an unclassified personal system. Following your investigation, it is clear that Secretary Clinton transmitted classified information on an unclassified system. Secretary Clinton on multiple occasions has said that she did not send or receive classified information or information marked as classified.3 In light of your decision to also not refer a false statements charge under 18 U.S.C. § 1001 for prosecution, we can only presume that Secretary Clinton admitted during her interview with your agents that she, in fact, sent and received emails containing classified information. Please confirm.

    6) Are you aware of whether any deleted emails which the FBI was able to forensically recover from Secretary Clinton's servers pertained to the Clinton Foundation?

    7) You stated Tuesday, "Given that combination of factors, we assess it is possible that hostile actors gained access to Secretary Clinton's personal e-mail account." Is the FBI's Counterintelligence Division still involved in determining the level of damage related to possible exploitation of Secretary Clinton's or her associates' email accounts and other communications?

    8) If the FBI performed a background check on an applicant for employment with the FBI or elsewhere in the U.S. Government, and that applicant engaged in conduct committed by Secretary Clinton, would a security clearance ever be granted to that person?

    [Jul 11, 2016] FBI Findings Damage Many of Hillary Clinton s Claims by STEVEN LEE MYERS

    Jul 05, 2016 | www.nytimes.com

    Mr. Comey said the emails included eight chains of emails and replies, some written by her, that contained information classified as "top secret: special access programs." That classification is the highest level, reserved for the nation's most highly guarded intelligence operations or sources.

    Another 36 chains were "secret," which is defined as including information that "could be expected to cause serious damage to the national security"; eight others had information classified at the lowest level, "confidential."

    [Jul 08, 2016] 12 highlights of FBI Director Comey s testimony on Clinton email investigation WJLA

    Notable quotes:
    "... House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) formally requested Thursday that Clinton's security clearance be revoked because of the careless handling of classified material that the FBI investigation revealed. ..."
    "... Clinton's personal system did not have full-time security staff ensuring that its protection was up to date. ..."
    "... Comey said as many as ten people who did not have clearance had access to the system. ..."
    "... Unconfirmed media reports had indicated that the FBI investigation spread to look at the activities of the Clinton Foundation as well ..."
    wjla.com

    House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) formally requested Thursday that Clinton's security clearance be revoked because of the careless handling of classified material that the FBI investigation revealed.

    ... ... ...

    While Comey maintained that nobody else would face criminal prosecution for doing the same things Clinton did, he emphasized in his testimony that there would be consequences if a current government employee did it. This could include termination, administrative sanctions, or losing clearance.

    He refused to definitively assess a hypothetical situation where someone like Clinton was seeking security clearance for an FBI job, though.

    ... ... ...

    Gmail: One aspect of Clinton's actions that Comey said was particularly troubling was that he could not completely exclude the possibility that her email account was hacked. Unlike the State Department or even email providers like Gmail, Clinton's personal system did not have full-time security staff ensuring that its protection was up to date.

    ... ... ...

    Clearance: Clinton and her top aides had security clearance to view the classified material that was improperly being transmitted on the server, but Comey said as many as ten people who did not have clearance had access to the system.

    ... ... ...

    Clinton Foundation: Unconfirmed media reports had indicated that the FBI investigation spread to look at the activities of the Clinton Foundation as well

    [Jul 08, 2016] Trey Gowdy GRILLS James Comey On Hillary Clinton Emails

    That was very impressive... This is the first time question of signing of NDA by Hillary Clinton and her aides. See all hearing Full Congressional Hearing With FBI Director James Comey 7-7-2016 - YouTube
    In full transcript Ke Buck ask interesting question at 1:55. Lawyer did not have any security clearances 4:09 and 11:25
    Jul 07, 2016 | YouTube

    Trey Gowdy GRILLS James Comey On Hillary Clinton Emails. Hillary Clinton Email Investigation FBI Director James Comey testified at a hearing on the FBI's investigation into Hillary Clinton's use of private email servers while serving as secretary of state, as well as the decision to not recommend criminal charges against her. Rep. Gowdy Q&A - Oversight of the State Department.

    At a congressional hearing Thursday, Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) grilled FBI director James Comey about several of Hillary Clinton's statements to the public, which the FBI investigation revealed to be untrue. For instance, Clinton had previously claimed that she had never received or sent classified information to or from her private email server; Comey conceded to Rep. Gowdy that that was not true.

    Another claim of Clinton's, which the investigation revealed to be untrue, was that she had retained all work-related emails. Comey noted that they had uncovered "thousands" of work-related emails not returned to the State Department. "In the interest of time and because I have a plane to catch tomorrow afternoon," Gowdy concluded after running through a catalogue of Clinton's claims, "I'm not going to go through any more of the false statements."

    But Gowdy determined that "false exculpatory statements" can be used to determine intention and consciousness of guilt.

    Wesley Eskildsen

    Is this guy a Starfish from Bikini Bottom!? If Hillary gave her Lawyer, or anyone without the proper Security Clearance AND the "Need to know", access to her Server containing classified information then she is in violation of Federal Law. If she were on active Duty she would be court-martialed. that is Chaffetz point exactly!

    John Doe

    As a democrat, I am disgusted that every member of my party, when givin the opportunity to ask some questions, not one of these cowards asked a real question and instead focussed on basically explaining about what a wonderful human being Hillary Clinton is, and what terrible people the republicans are....

    Wayne Paul

    This chick Maloney just throwing softballs I have no clue why she is even talking.

    aadrgtagtwe aaqerytwerhywerytqery

    Comey is a liar, look at his reaction when asked about what questions did FBI ask hillary during the 3 and a half hour interview. He said he couldn't remember at the moment. How is that possible? The only question to ask hillary during the fbi interview was: "Did you send and receive classified top secret emails through your servers?"

    Both answers Hillary could have given, would have been enough to indict her. If she said "Yes", then she would have been indicted for sending top secret info. If she said "No" , she would have lied, because the report that Comey presented said that "top secret emails were sent and received, and they were top secret at the time they were sent and received. Fbi didn't ask that question at all. That tells you that the whole interview was a sham, Hillary was never interviewed.

    The propaganda-media reported "hillary was grilled by fbi during 3 and a half hour interview". What unbelievable bullshit! WE WANT JUSTICE!!!!!!!!! For all those people who are now in jail for the rest of their lives for doing much less than the criminal-hillary!!!!!!!

    [Jul 08, 2016] FB. Director Testifies on Clinton Emails to Withering Criticism From GOP

    Notable quotes:
    "... At a contentious hearing of the House oversight committee, Mr. Comey acknowledged under questioning that a number of key assertions that Mrs. Clinton made for months in defending her email system were contradicted by the FBI's investigation. ..."
    "... Mr. Comey said that Mrs. Clinton had failed to return "thousands" of work-related emails to the State Department, despite her public insistence to the contrary, and that her lawyers may have destroyed classified material that the F.B.I. was unable to recover. He also described her handling of classified material as secretary of state as "negligent" - a legal term he avoided using when he announced on Tuesday that "no reasonable prosecutor" would bring a case against her. ..."
    www.nytimes.com

    ... He also provided new details that could prove damaging to her just weeks before she is to be named the Democrats' presidential nominee.

    At a contentious hearing of the House oversight committee, Mr. Comey acknowledged under questioning that a number of key assertions that Mrs. Clinton made for months in defending her email system were contradicted by the FBI's investigation.

    Mr. Comey said that Mrs. Clinton had failed to return "thousands" of work-related emails to the State Department, despite her public insistence to the contrary, and that her lawyers may have destroyed classified material that the F.B.I. was unable to recover. He also described her handling of classified material as secretary of state as "negligent" - a legal term he avoided using when he announced on Tuesday that "no reasonable prosecutor" would bring a case against her.

    [Jul 08, 2016] Clinton Email Hairball

    Notable quotes:
    "... I also made this comment during the morning links, but I think it bears repeating. Robinson considers this to be a great day for Clinton? By what standard? The FBI director went on national television and described her as "extremely careless," and then essentially called her a liar. Is a politician considered to be ethical if he or she is not indicted? ..."
    "... Called her a liar? Un-indicted liar or perjurer because the investigators are reasonable. ..."
    "... What an inversion – this must be the first time it was good for Hillary that her husband had a scandalous private meeting with a younger woman. ..."
    "... In Hillary's nomination victory speech a month ago she argued she has the moral high ground and Trump's response was to focus on the problems in the economy. If the recession starts to hit hard enough late this year, Trump will win, and he will tell Hillary and Bill, "Its the economy stupid!" ..."
    "... It is a SAD day when a President of the US cheers for an "extremely careless" leaker after being the most aggressive prosecutor of whistleblowers under the Espionage Act ever. Can I haz my money back? ..."
    "... When "mere mortals" undertake the kind of reckless action with regard to classified material that Clinton did, wouldn't a likely and appropriate sanction be to pull that person's security clearance? ..."
    "... Can a president operate without having a security clearance? ..."
    "... "Mere mortals" get indicted. Here is the complaint filed in U.S.A v. Bryan Nishimura, July 24, 2015 ..."
    "... BRYAN H. NISHIMURA, defendant herein, from on or about January 2007 through April 2012, while deployed outside of the United States on active military duty with the United States Navy Reserve in Afghanistan and thereafter at his residence located in the County of Sacramento, State and Eastern District of California, being an officer and employee of the United States, specifically: a United States Navy Reserve Commander, and, by virtue of his office and employment as such, becoming possessed of documents and materials containing classified information of the United States, specifically: CLASSIFIED United States Army records, did knowingly remove such documents and materials without authority and with the intent to retain such documents and materials at his residence in the County of Sacramento, an unauthorized location, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1924(a), a Class A misdemeanor. ..."
    "... In a decision Tuesday in a case not involving Clinton directly, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit held that messages contained in a personal email account can sometimes be considered government records subject to Freedom of Information Act requests. ..."
    "... Apparently Hillary's problems with the FOIA cases will worsen. ..."
    www.nakedcapitalism.com

    "Comey and Lynch asked to testify before Congress on Clinton probe" [MarketWatch]. From my armchair at 30,000 feet: If the Republicans really want to make Lynch squirm, they just have to ask Lynch one question, which Comey - strong passive-aggressive move, there, Jim! - handed to them on a silver platter at his presser, yesterday. I've helpfully written it down (quoted phrases from Comey's press release, parsed here):

    Q: Attorney General Lynch, what "security or administrative sanctions" do you feel are appropriate for Secretary Clinton's "extremely careless" handling of her email communications at the State Department?

    No speeches instead of questions, no primping on camera for the folks back home, nothing about the endless lying, no Benghazi red meat, no sphincter-driven ranting about "security", tie gormless Trey Gowdy up in a canvas bag and stuff him under a desk. Just ask that one question. And when Lynch dodges, as she will, ask it again. I don't ever recall having written a sentence that includes "the American people want," but what the American people want is to see some member of the elite, some time, any time, held accountable for wrong-doing. If it's Clinton's "turn" for that, then so be it. She should look at the big picture and consider the larger benefit of continued legitimacy for the Republic and take one for the team. So let's see if the Republicans overplay their hand. They always have. UPDATE This is a good, that is, sane letter from Bob Goodlatte (pdf), chair of the House Judiciary Committee (via MsExPat). But don't get down in the goddamned weeds!! K.I.S.S.!!!

    "Comey's solo appearance Tuesday stood out for historical reasons, because it's highly unusual for the FBI to make public findings when investigators have decided no charges should be brought" [CNN]. This purports to be the inside story of how Comey "stood alone" to make the announcement. But there are some holes in the narrative:

    Matthew Miller, the former top Justice spokesman under Attorney General Eric Holder, called Comey's announcement "outrageous." "The FBI's job is to investigate cases and when it's appropriate to work with the Justice Department to bring charges," he said on CNN. House Republican sides with Comey over Trump on Clinton emails. Instead, Miller said: "Jim Comey is the final arbiter in determining the appropriateness of Hillary Clinton's conduct. That's not his job."

    When you've lost Eric Holder's spokesperson And then there's this. After Clinton's "long-awaited" Fourth-of-July weekend three hours of testimony:

    Officials said it was already clear that there wasn't enough evidence to bring criminal charges. The interview cemented that decision among FBI and Justice officials who were present.

    By Monday night, Comey and other FBI officials decided the public announcement should come at the earliest opportunity.

    The fact that Tuesday would also mark the first public campaign appearance by Obama alongside Hillary Clinton didn't enter in the calculation, officials said.

    But as Yves points out, there was no time to write an official report of Clinton's "interview" over the weekend. So for this narrative to work, you've got to form a mental picture of high FBI officials scanning the transcript of Clinton's "interview," throwing up their hands, and saying "We got nuthin'. You take it from here, Jim." That doesn't scan. I mean, the FBI is called a bureau for good reason. So to me, the obvious process violation means that political pressure was brought to bear on Comey, most likely by Obama, despite the denials (those being subject to the Rice-Davies Rule). But Comey did the bare minimum to comply, in essence carefully building a three-scoop Sundae of Accountability, and then handing it, with the cherry ("security or administrative sanctions"), to Lynch, so Lynch could have the pleasant task of making the decision about whether to put the cherry on top. Or not. Of course, if our elites were as dedicated to public service as they were in Nixon's day, there would have been a second Saturday Night Massacre (link for those who came in late), but these are different times. (Extending the sundae metaphor even further, it will be interesting to see if the ice cream shop staff knows what else is back in the freezer, the nuts and syrups that Comey decided not to add; Comey certainly made the ethical case for leaks.)

    "Hillary Clinton's email problems might be even worse than we thought " [Chris Cilizza, WaPo]. Cillizza, for whom I confess a sneaking affection, as for Nooners, isn't the most combative writer in WaPo's stable


    voteforno6, July 6, 2016 at 2:12 pm

    Re: "Hillary Clinton's great day"

    I also made this comment during the morning links, but I think it bears repeating. Robinson considers this to be a great day for Clinton? By what standard? The FBI director went on national television and described her as "extremely careless," and then essentially called her a liar. Is a politician considered to be ethical if he or she is not indicted?

    MyLessThanPrimeBeef, July 6, 2016 at 3:29 pm

    Called her a liar? Un-indicted liar or perjurer because the investigators are reasonable.

    Elizabeth Burton, July 6, 2016 at 6:17 pm

    The cultish nature of Clinton followers struck me months ago; it's quite plain to anyone who's done any amount of study of cults. The giddy insistence now that the Comey statement is total vindication is a case in point, and any attempt to point out how damning it actually was only brings an "innocent until proven guilty" reply.

    One can only surmise that a large number of people have been so inured to corruption they no longer consider it a negative unless the perpetrator goes to jail; and even then there would likely be more insistence that person was railroaded.

    Tertium Squid, July 6, 2016 at 2:15 pm

    What an inversion – this must be the first time it was good for Hillary that her husband had a scandalous private meeting with a younger woman.

    Tim, July 6, 2016 at 2:40 pm

    On election day hindsight will show the real inversion with the Clintons is:

    In 1990s Bob Dole ran on a platform of having the moral high ground, while Bill Clinton said "it's the economy stupid", and Bill won.

    In Hillary's nomination victory speech a month ago she argued she has the moral high ground and Trump's response was to focus on the problems in the economy. If the recession starts to hit hard enough late this year, Trump will win, and he will tell Hillary and Bill, "Its the economy stupid!"

    Isolato, July 6, 2016 at 2:18 pm

    It is a SAD day when a President of the US cheers for an "extremely careless" leaker after being the most aggressive prosecutor of whistleblowers under the Espionage Act ever. Can I haz my money back?

    Kokuanani, July 6, 2016 at 3:19 pm

    When "mere mortals" undertake the kind of reckless action with regard to classified material that Clinton did, wouldn't a likely and appropriate sanction be to pull that person's security clearance?

    Can we hope for that to happen to Clinton? [Why not?]

    Can a president operate without having a security clearance?

    3.14e-9, July 6, 2016 at 6:05 pm

    When "mere mortals" undertake the kind of reckless action with regard to classified material that Clinton did, wouldn't a likely and appropriate sanction be to pull that person's security clearance?

    "Mere mortals" get indicted. Here is the complaint filed in U.S.A v. Bryan Nishimura, July 24, 2015:

    The United States Attorney charges: THAT BRYAN H. NISHIMURA, defendant herein, from on or about January 2007 through April 2012, while deployed outside of the United States on active military duty with the United States Navy Reserve in Afghanistan and thereafter at his residence located in the County of Sacramento, State and Eastern District of California, being an officer and employee of the United States, specifically: a United States Navy Reserve Commander, and, by virtue of his office and employment as such, becoming possessed of documents and materials containing classified information of the United States, specifically: CLASSIFIED United States Army records, did knowingly remove such documents and materials without authority and with the intent to retain such documents and materials at his residence in the County of Sacramento, an unauthorized location, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1924(a), a Class A misdemeanor.

    voteforno6, July 6, 2016 at 6:13 pm

    Since the classification program falls under the President by law, it is impossible for a President to not have a security clearance.

    Pookah Harvey, July 6, 2016 at 2:54 pm

    Clinton supporters seem to feel the fat lady has sung but it might be they are only hearing someone who is slightly chunky. From Politico:

    On the same day that the FBI announced that the criminal investigation of Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server is likely to conclude without any charges, a federal appeals court issued a ruling that could complicate and prolong a slew of ongoing civil lawsuits over access to the messages Clinton and her top aides traded on personal accounts.

    In a decision Tuesday in a case not involving Clinton directly, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit held that messages contained in a personal email account can sometimes be considered government records subject to Freedom of Information Act requests.

    Apparently Hillary's problems with the FOIA cases will worsen.

    [Jul 08, 2016] Buck To Comey Did You Rewrite Federal Law

    Jul 07, 2016 | YouTube

    Rep. Ken Buck questions FBI Director James Comey about his insertion of the term "willfully" into 18 U.S. Code § 1924. Comey says he "imputes" the term in line with the Department of Justice's history/tradition of enforcing the statute.

    The above clip is taken from the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee's hearing regarding Hillary Clinton's criminal email conduct.

    Also see

    [Jul 08, 2016] The Clinton Email Probe and the Question of Gross Negligence

    Notable quotes:
    "... ...Mr. Comey also referenced a more obscure provision of the Espionage Act that has little to do with intent or state of mind, but rather makes it a crime to disclose classified information through "gross negligence." ..."
    "... But the crime of "gross negligence" in the Espionage Act doesn't appear to require proof of any intentional mishandling of documents, according to Stephen I. Vladeck , a national security scholar at the University of Texas. ..."
    "... Specifically, the law makes it a felony to permit classified information relating to national defense to be "removed from its proper place of custody" through gross negligence. ..."
    "... Why are you focusing on the gross negligence aspect? ..."
    "... Where is the removal from the proper place of custody? I've seen nothing in any legal analysis in this paper that talks about it. Is the presence of classified material on a private server of one who is authorized to have it equivalent to such a removal? ..."
    "... She was specifically not authorized to have a private server. ..."
    "... "From the group of 30,000 emails returned to the State Department in 2014, 110 emails in 52 email chains have been determined by the owning agency to contain classified information at the time they were sent or received. Eight of those chains contained information that was TOP SECRET at the time they were sent; 36 of those chains contained SECRET information at the time; and eight contained CONFIDENTIAL information at the time. That's the lowest level of classification." ..."
    "... "We assess it is possible that hostile actors gained access to Secretary Clinton's personal email account." ..."
    "... Making an argument for the difference between "gross negligence" and "extreme carelessness" is the sort of semantic hair-splitting that Hillary Clinton ought to have been compelled to do in court - in the same way that her husband prevaricated over "what the meaning of the word 'is' is," shortly before he lost his law license. ..."
    Jul 05, 2016 | WSJ

    ...Mr. Comey also referenced a more obscure provision of the Espionage Act that has little to do with intent or state of mind, but rather makes it a crime to disclose classified information through "gross negligence."

    That provision of the Espionage Act, the primary law governing the handling of classified information, could require at least proof that the offender knew the classified information disclosed could harm the United States or benefit a foreign power if it got into the wrong hands.

    But the crime of "gross negligence" in the Espionage Act doesn't appear to require proof of any intentional mishandling of documents, according to Stephen I. Vladeck, a national security scholar at the University of Texas.

    Specifically, the law makes it a felony to permit classified information relating to national defense to be "removed from its proper place of custody" through gross negligence.

    What would constitute a degree of recklessness that rises to gross negligence? Mr. Vladeck offered an example of accidentally leaving a briefcase stuffed with classified national security secrets on a busy sidewalk in Washington, D.C.

    ... ... ...

    Charles Silva

    Why are you focusing on the gross negligence aspect?

    Where is the removal from the proper place of custody? I've seen nothing in any legal analysis in this paper that talks about it. Is the presence of classified material on a private server of one who is authorized to have it equivalent to such a removal?

    Lee Hartwig

    @Charles Silva She was specifically not authorized to have a private server.

    Clifford Crouch

    @Michael Piston

    "From the group of 30,000 emails returned to the State Department in 2014, 110 emails in 52 email chains have been determined by the owning agency to contain classified information at the time they were sent or received. Eight of those chains contained information that was TOP SECRET at the time they were sent; 36 of those chains contained SECRET information at the time; and eight contained CONFIDENTIAL information at the time. That's the lowest level of classification."

    -FBI Director James Comey, July 5, 2016

    "We assess it is possible that hostile actors gained access to Secretary Clinton's personal email account."

    -James Comey, July 5, 2016

    Making an argument for the difference between "gross negligence" and "extreme carelessness" is the sort of semantic hair-splitting that Hillary Clinton ought to have been compelled to do in court - in the same way that her husband prevaricated over "what the meaning of the word 'is' is," shortly before he lost his law license.

    [Jul 07, 2016] Why the FBI concluded Hillary Clintons email practices did not rise to the level of criminal charges -

    Hillary coped her emails and gave all of the to her private lawyer, who has no security clearance, on the USB stick. That's alone qualifies for gross negligence.
    Notable quotes:
    "... Hillary Clinton also used the department's secure email system for transmitting classified information, but the FBI found that some of the regular communications with her staff on the personal server involved facts and details that she should have known were classified. In a few cases, the emails bore markings to indicate they contained classified information. ..."
    "... Stewart Baker, a top national security lawyer in the Bush administration, called Comey's statement "pretty damning for Secretary Clinton, even if the facts don't make for an impressive criminal case. He suggests that she should have been, or arguably could still be, subjected to 'security or administrative sanctions.' What he doesn't say, but what we can infer, is that she ran those incredible risks with national security information because she was more worried about the GOP reading her mail than of Russian or Chinese spies reading it. That's appalling," he said. ..."
    "... HIllary lied about her servers, she lied about sending classified information, she lied about the re-classification of confidential, secret and SAP documents. Some two hours after Comey's announcement, she and Obama took off on Air Force One for a rally together. ..."
    "... But a new security regimen is dawning for those who hold security clearances. According to the FBI, they are now free to transfer data between secure and non-secure networks without punishment, as long as the INTENT is not to harm the United States. ..."
    "... A retired FBI agent on Fox said this : The Comey conference was to take the heat off of Lynch - because if the FBI had just been quiet with their results, and it would have been Lynch who came out and said...No charges - AFTER the Phoenix scandal, people would really be skeptical. end - ..."
    "... Of course this took AG-LL off the hook. NOW - for all of this to fall in place? Had to be some meetings beforehand - AG - FBI and Whitehouse general council - 3 US government lawyers colluding this event - to make SURE they have jobs the next 4 years and the GRATITUDE of Potus Hillary. ..."
    "... Corrupt? I would not go that far...let's just say DIRTY. ..."
    "... "Gross negligence" is the standard under 18 U.S.C., section 793-f. FBI Director Comey said Hillary Clinton was "extremely careless" in her handling of highly classified information. What's the difference, other than semantics, between "gross negligence" and "extremely careless?" ..."
    "... Hillary's emails may be great confirmation of Hillary's war role in the Mid-east and even Ukraine. However, more to the point they confirm for all Democrats that Hillary's agenda is the Neo-con one of Geo. W. Bush's handlers from PNAC, Chicago School of Economics, Bill Kristol, Robert Kagan and his wife Victoria Nuland. (The Neo-con/Neo-liberal company includes Larry Summers, Karl Rove, Dick Cheney, Rumsfeld, etc.) She is not a run of the mill hawk like John McCain, she is a New World Order marionette just as Geo W was. She needs to be dumped as she is beholden to anti-democratic values of elitism. ..."
    "... Bill Kristol is attacking Donald Trump because his candidate is Hillary. ..."
    "... This was historical. Law enforcement does not make decisions on prosecution. That is left to prosecutors. Law enforcement are fact finders who should have presented the case to a career professional prosecutor to make a decision. ..."
    "... The question is, why was well established policy and protocol violated and the case not presented to a prosecutor for a decision? Ask any local D.A. If they reject a case, they write a "reject" documenting their rationale. In a very public or complicated case, that reject is written in great detail regarding each and every potential charge. ..."
    "... The Obama Administration has prosecuted more people under the same WW I espionage act than all other administrations COMBINED. Comey has prosecuted a person under this act for a 21-word email .not 30,000 destroyed emails. ..."
    "... Everybody knows this was fixed. The examples of similar incidents, putting people in jail, are coming out of the shadows. It is time to vote the career politicians out of office and take our country back. ..."
    "... NSA has copies of every email sent to/from US, & likely most others, for last 10+ years. So they have all 30,000+ of the emails she deleted. ..."
    "... When in the Navy I saw a LT. career destroyed for leaving a top secret safe open over night. We did not know who maybe got in. The assumption by NCIS was that someone did enter and Top Secret information was taken. He was prosecuted for maybe forgetting and Clinton no prosecution for being dumb? ..."
    LA Times

    "It's just not a crime under current law to do nothing more than share sensitive information over unsecured networks," said Stephen Vladeck, a law professor at the University of Texas. "Maybe it should be, but that's something for Congress to decide going forward."

    John M. Deutch, another former CIA director, narrowly avoided a misdemeanor charge for having taken hundreds of top secret files home on his laptop computer. He was pardoned by Clinton before charges were filed.

    ... ... ...

    Hillary Clinton also used the department's secure email system for transmitting classified information, but the FBI found that some of the regular communications with her staff on the personal server involved facts and details that she should have known were classified. In a few cases, the emails bore markings to indicate they contained classified information.

    However, investigators did not find evidence she knowingly or intentionally disclosed government secrets or that she exposed secrets through gross negligence. Clinton's apparent interest was in maintaining her privacy.

    ... ... ...

    Stewart Baker, a top national security lawyer in the Bush administration, called Comey's statement "pretty damning for Secretary Clinton, even if the facts don't make for an impressive criminal case. He suggests that she should have been, or arguably could still be, subjected to 'security or administrative sanctions.' What he doesn't say, but what we can infer, is that she ran those incredible risks with national security information because she was more worried about the GOP reading her mail than of Russian or Chinese spies reading it. That's appalling," he said.

    knox.bob.xpg

    No amount of facts, no amount of evidence, and no amount of lies will change the minds of supporters of Hillary Clinton. Her coronation was pre-determined. Ideology is more important to her supporters than the quality of the candidate. While brash, Trump nailed it yesterday. The fix was in and the optics played out.

    HIllary lied about her servers, she lied about sending classified information, she lied about the re-classification of confidential, secret and SAP documents. Some two hours after Comey's announcement, she and Obama took off on Air Force One for a rally together.

    Obama would have never done this if Comey's decision was to seek criminal charges. Presidential travel is not spur of the moment, it is carefully planned weeks in advance. So what happened here ? I believe Comey knew that DOJ would not seek criminal charges against her despite the overwhelming evidence of gross negligence.

    Comey "fried" her yesterday and now she will be tried in the court of public opinion. There are simply some people who believe that global warming, income inequality, and transgender bathrooms are more important than ISIS, our economy, terror, or national debt.

    unclesmrgol

    Hillary has been freed from any punishment, for some animals are more important than others.

    But a new security regimen is dawning for those who hold security clearances. According to the FBI, they are now free to transfer data between secure and non-secure networks without punishment, as long as the INTENT is not to harm the United States.

    That is the new standard, and a mighty fine one it is -- right?

    SandyDago

    A retired FBI agent on Fox said this : The Comey conference was to take the heat off of Lynch - because if the FBI had just been quiet with their results, and it would have been Lynch who came out and said...No charges - AFTER the Phoenix scandal, people would really be skeptical. end -

    That seems very obvious at this point...The FBI does not do - what James Comey did yesterday. No comment is how they roll - Yet we get a play by play yesterday.

    Of course this took AG-LL off the hook. NOW - for all of this to fall in place? Had to be some meetings beforehand - AG - FBI and Whitehouse general council - 3 US government lawyers colluding this event - to make SURE they have jobs the next 4 years and the GRATITUDE of Potus Hillary.

    Corrupt? I would not go that far...let's just say DIRTY.

    Chris Crusade

    "Gross negligence" is the standard under 18 U.S.C., section 793-f. FBI Director Comey said Hillary Clinton was "extremely careless" in her handling of highly classified information. What's the difference, other than semantics, between "gross negligence" and "extremely careless?"

    lon.ball

    Hillary's emails may be great confirmation of Hillary's war role in the Mid-east and even Ukraine. However, more to the point they confirm for all Democrats that Hillary's agenda is the Neo-con one of Geo. W. Bush's handlers from PNAC, Chicago School of Economics, Bill Kristol, Robert Kagan and his wife Victoria Nuland. (The Neo-con/Neo-liberal company includes Larry Summers, Karl Rove, Dick Cheney, Rumsfeld, etc.) She is not a run of the mill hawk like John McCain, she is a New World Order marionette just as Geo W was. She needs to be dumped as she is beholden to anti-democratic values of elitism.

    Bill Kristol is attacking Donald Trump because his candidate is Hillary. (See this article in this issue.) So, it is not about Democrat vs. Republican. The new political dichotomy is Centralization (corporatism, totalitarian, collectivism) vs. Personal Constitutional freedom. I am a lifelong Democrat and Sanders man who is "never Hillary" for good reason. I cannot sit by idly and watch as our national Democracy continues to devolve into world fascism with the Neo-cons. Hillary is a traitor to the Nation and to the late great Democratic Party.

    It is time for the old right and old progressive left to unite for preservation of the US Constitution and personal freedom. Never Hillary; never New World Order!" less

    tommy501

    This was historical. Law enforcement does not make decisions on prosecution. That is left to prosecutors. Law enforcement are fact finders who should have presented the case to a career professional prosecutor to make a decision.

    The question is, why was well established policy and protocol violated and the case not presented to a prosecutor for a decision? Ask any local D.A. If they reject a case, they write a "reject" documenting their rationale. In a very public or complicated case, that reject is written in great detail regarding each and every potential charge.

    Something's fishy.

    andytek2

    @tommy501 he didn't make a prosecutorial decision he only said that no reasonable prosecutor would file charges.

    DennisWV

    The Obama Administration has prosecuted more people under the same WW I espionage act than all other administrations COMBINED. Comey has prosecuted a person under this act for a 21-word email .not 30,000 destroyed emails.

    Everybody knows this was fixed. The examples of similar incidents, putting people in jail, are coming out of the shadows. It is time to vote the career politicians out of office and take our country back.

    Outside the Herd

    NSA has copies of every email sent to/from US, & likely most others, for last 10+ years. So they have all 30,000+ of the emails she deleted.

    FBI & O knew months ago what was in all of them, & delayed looking away until primaries were clinched. Which was also crooked, ask Bernie's peep's.

    Andre-Leonard

    "A second law makes it a crime to "remove" secret documents kept by the government or to allow them to be stolen through "gross negligence."

    Funny how they went after Edward Snowden for the very same thing. Yet no one in their 'right' mind expected a Justice Department led by Obama to allow for Billary to be indicted. It's all about favorites here and justice is 'not' really blind.

    kenwrite9

    When she was in foreign countries she should have known that those countries spy on American officials. I now that, why she did not is strange. When in the Navy I saw a LT. career destroyed for leaving a top secret safe open over night. We did not know who maybe got in. The assumption by NCIS was that someone did enter and Top Secret information was taken. He was prosecuted for maybe forgetting and Clinton no prosecution for being dumb?

    [Jul 06, 2016] FBI Rewrites Federal Law to Let Hillary Off the Hook by Andrew C. McCarthy

    Highly recommended!
    Notable quotes:
    "... Hillary Clinton checked every box required for a felony violation of Section 793(f) of the federal penal code (Title 18) ..."
    "... The point of having a statute that criminalizes gross negligence is to underscore that government officials have a special obligation to safeguard national defense secrets; when they fail to carry out that obligation due to gross negligence, they are guilty of serious wrongdoing. The lack of intent to harm our country is irrelevant. People never intend the bad things that happen due to gross negligence. ..."
    "... It is a common tactic of defense lawyers in criminal trials to set up a straw-man for the jury: a crime the defendant has not committed. ..."
    "... Judges generally do not allow such sleight-of-hand because innocence on an uncharged crime is irrelevant to the consideration of the crimes that actually have been charged. ..."
    "... Meanwhile, although there may have been profound harm to national security caused by her grossly negligent mishandling of classified information, we've decided she shouldn't be prosecuted for grossly negligent mishandling of classified information. ..."
    "... To my mind, a reasonable prosecutor would ask: Why did Congress criminalize the mishandling of classified information through gross negligence? The answer, obviously, is to prevent harm to national security. So then the reasonable prosecutor asks: Was the statute clearly violated, and if yes, is it likely that Mrs. Clinton's conduct caused harm to national security? If those two questions are answered in the affirmative, I believe many, if not most, reasonable prosecutors would feel obliged to bring the case. ..."
    National Review

    Hillary Clinton checked every box required for a felony violation of Section 793(f) of the federal penal code (Title 18): With lawful access to highly classified information she acted with gross negligence in removing and causing it to be removed it from its proper place of custody, and she transmitted it and caused it to be transmitted to others not authorized to have it, in patent violation of her trust. Director Comey even conceded that former Secretary Clinton was "extremely careless" and strongly suggested that her recklessness very likely led to communications (her own and those she corresponded with) being intercepted by foreign intelligence services.

    In essence, in order to give Mrs. Clinton a pass, the FBI rewrote the statute, inserting an intent element that Congress did not require. The added intent element, moreover, makes no sense: The point of having a statute that criminalizes gross negligence is to underscore that government officials have a special obligation to safeguard national defense secrets; when they fail to carry out that obligation due to gross negligence, they are guilty of serious wrongdoing. The lack of intent to harm our country is irrelevant. People never intend the bad things that happen due to gross negligence.

    ... ... ...

    It is a common tactic of defense lawyers in criminal trials to set up a straw-man for the jury: a crime the defendant has not committed. The idea is that by knocking down a crime the prosecution does not allege and cannot prove, the defense may confuse the jury into believing the defendant is not guilty of the crime charged.

    Judges generally do not allow such sleight-of-hand because innocence on an uncharged crime is irrelevant to the consideration of the crimes that actually have been charged. It seems to me that this is what the FBI has done today. It has told the public that because Mrs. Clinton did not have intent to harm the United States we should not prosecute her on a felony that does not require proof of intent to harm the United States.

    Meanwhile, although there may have been profound harm to national security caused by her grossly negligent mishandling of classified information, we've decided she shouldn't be prosecuted for grossly negligent mishandling of classified information. I think highly of Jim Comey personally and professionally, but this makes no sense to me. Finally, I was especially unpersuaded by Director Comey's claim that no reasonable prosecutor would bring a case based on the evidence uncovered by the FBI.

    To my mind, a reasonable prosecutor would ask: Why did Congress criminalize the mishandling of classified information through gross negligence? The answer, obviously, is to prevent harm to national security. So then the reasonable prosecutor asks: Was the statute clearly violated, and if yes, is it likely that Mrs. Clinton's conduct caused harm to national security? If those two questions are answered in the affirmative, I believe many, if not most, reasonable prosecutors would feel obliged to bring the case.

    Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/437479/fbi-rewrites-federal-law-let-hillary-hook

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