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James "We are not weasels" Comey

The story of how three FBI Mayberry Machiavellians prevented Sanders from becoming the candidate from Democratic Party and essentially delivered the victory to Trump, rigging the US Presidential elections

Hat tip to stateofthenation2012.com

News FBI Mayberry Machiavellians Recommended Links Strzok-gate Understanding Hillary Clinton email scandal Andrew McCabe Wiretaps of Trump and his associates during Presidential elections Special Prosecutor Mueller and his fishing expedition American intelligence services Maydan against Trump
Coordinated set of leaks as a color revolution tool Appointment of a Special Prosecutor gambit Brennan elections machinations "Seventeen agencies" memo about Russian influence on elections Was Natalia Veselnitskaya meeting with Trump Jr. a trap? Michael Flynn removal DNC and Podesta emails leak: blaming Vladimir Putin Do the US intelligence agencies  influence the US Presidential elections ? The problem of control of intelligence services in democratic societies
Anti-Russian hysteria in connection emailgate and DNC leak Anti Trump Hysteria Amorality and criminality of neoliberal elite  Audacious Oligarchy and "Democracy for Winners" Color revolutions Rosenstein role NeoMcCartyism Hillary Clinton email scandal History of American False Flag Operations
Corporate Media: Journalism In the Service of the Powerful Few Trump vs. Deep State Frustrated underachievers NGOs as braintrust of color revolutions The Real War on Reality Media as a weapon of mass deception Inside "democracy promotion" hypocrisy fair Two Party System as polyarchy Neoliberalism as Trotskyism for the rich
US and British media are servants of security apparatus Neocon foreign policy is a disaster for the USA Media-Military-Industrial Complex Neoconservatism New American Militarism Corporatist Corruption Neoliberalism as a New Form of Corporatism Bernie Sanders betrayal of his supporters Elite Theory And the Revolt of the Elite
Control of the MSM during color revolution is like air superiority in the war The Deep State The Iron Law of Oligarchy National Security State Mayberry Machiavellians Militarism and reckless jingoism of the US neoliberal elite Skeptic Quotations Politically Incorrect Humor Hypocrisy and Pseudo-democracy

Weasel:  : a sneaky, untrustworthy, or insincere person
Merriam-Webster dictionary

Comey phrase "We are not weasels" is reminiscent of Richard Nixon proclaiming “I’m not a crook,” It was uttered when Republican House committee members were asking thorny questions about why the FBI wouldn’t reopen the case of Hillary Clinton’s compromised email server even though the FBI granted several of her aides immunity from criminal prosecution. If no criminal activity is suspected, why did the aides need immunity in exchange for turning over their laptops? Why didn’t the FBI subpoena the laptops instead of giving Cheryl Mills and Heather Samuelson immunity, which then exempts their laptops’ contents from use as evidence in any prosecution? How convenient. Why Bryan Pagliano got immunity and then skipped his scheduled appearances to testify before the committee? Is anybody holding these people accountable? At the Sept. 28 hearing, committee members learned that Paul Combetta, a Platte River Networks employee who worked for Mrs. Clinton, had deleted numerous e-mails in 2015 after the Benghazi committee had requested their preservation. At this point “Comey bristled at any suggestion that Clinton faced a double standard or that FBI agents were influenced by politics,” The Post reported. “You can call us wrong, but don’t call us weasels,” Mr. Comey said. “We are not weasels.”

 

FBI coverup of Hillary "transgressions"

When somebody is above the law it is called royalty. That why sometime Hillary Clinton is called the "Queen".

Too Big to Jail, Too Innocent to Flail, or Both

Should Clinton have been prosecuted at all? It depends on whether you wish to apply the law (many do), to apply what others consider common sense, or to rebalance the scale of unequal prosecution. And if the latter, rebalance in which direction? Should Clinton go to jail, or should Manning, among others, go free? I would personally be fine if Clinton never saw a courtroom and prisoners like Manning were freed. For the overall good of the nation, I would take that trade. Others, I’m sure, would choose differently.

Returning to why Clinton wasn’t prosecuted — was it just that Clinton is too important, too protected, to prosecute? “Too big to jail” in other words? Too high to be brought down by something as low as the law? After all, starting with Nixon, the circle of those who can never be punished for their crimes has grown constantly more inclusive. (I almost wrote “for their non-violent crimes,” but then I remembered the torturing George W. Bush.) That’s certainly a possible explanation, even a likely one, given our recent failure to prosecute even a straight-up thief like former Goldman Sachs chief, ex-governor and Democratic Party fundraiser Jon Corzine.

But we live in a punishing, prosecutorial state as well, one that treats its enemies as harshly as it treats its friends gently, especially its inner circle friends. It’s this second aspect, not just who is too big to jail, but who is too high-minded and innocent to torture and flail — too “loyal” to be treated, in other words, like Sterling and Manning — that must be considered before we can understand the unequal application of these laws. Clinton, for all her faults in James Comey’s eyes, was no Chelsea Manning.

As Wheeler says in her closing, this is “another way of saying our classification system is largely a way to arbitrarily label people you dislike disloyal.” On reflection, it’s hard to disagree.

That Hillary Clinton is a poisoned  fruit for the Democratic Party ticket was know long  ago. As early as August, 2015 some former highly placed officials were suggesting that Clinton committed a felony: Platte River Networks Clinton Email Investigation Timeline

August 20, 2015: Former CIA Director James Woosley suggests Clinton could have committed a felony.

Woolsey, who was CIA director from 1993 to 1995 under President Bill Clinton, comments on Clinton’s email scandal: “What is really wrong here was setting up this separate email system and using it for government work. If anybody wants to set one up and use it for yoga appointments, wedding planning, okay, fine. But to have a server in a bathroom closet in Colorado that is dealing with potentially extremely classified material because it is material that is passing through the secretary of state’s conversations with her staff, that’s really very irresponsible.

It is a felony. I think and there are some ways of dealing with this, putting something in the wrong place and making a mistake that are only a misdemeanor. But we’ve had now several of my successors in the intelligence business at senior levels plead to charges and be in situations where it is clear they violated the law, around some of those things look very similar to what has happened here.”(Fox News, 8/20/2015)

As Edward Snowden noted:

 “Anyone who has the clearances that the secretary of state has or the director of any top level agency has knows how classified information should be handled. When the unclassified systems of the United States government -- which has a full time information security staff -- regularly get hacked, the idea that someone keeping a private server in the renovated bathroom of a server farm in Colorado, is more secure is completely ridiculous.” (Al Jazeera America, 9/3/2015)

But instead of objective investigation FBI engaged in cover-up and essentially had stolen the possibility for Sanders to represent Democratic Party in 2016 Presidential elections.

Peter Strzok role in suppression of Hillary Clinton "emailgate" scandal
and helping Hillary and her team to avoid prosecution

As deputy FBI director for counterintelligence, Strzok also was a liaison with various agencies in the intelligence community, including the CIA, then led by Director John Brennan. He played the key role in suppressing the investigation and exoneration of Hillary Clinton in connection with "emailgate" scandal. Two other people involved is what can be called the conspiracy to rid the US Presidential election within FBI were Comey and McCabe.

Starting on July 10, 2015, Strzok led a team of a dozen investigators to examine Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server.[11] During the investigation, Strzok changed then-FBI Director James Comey's draft language describing Clinton's actions as "grossly negligent" (which is a criminal offense when related to dealing with classified information) to "extremely careless".[6]

A source familiar with FBI supervisory agent Peter Stzrok’s involvement in the Hillary Clinton server investigation confirmed CNN’s report that he changed ‘grossly negligent’ to ‘extremely careless.

Strzok and his team helped review newly discovered Clinton emails days before Election Day.[11]

Peter Stzrok reviewed and cleared the Anthony Weiner-Huma Abedin emails in RECORD TIME before the election and said he FOUND NOTHING.

Strzok was conducted interviews with Hillary Clinton and members of her team involved in emailgate.  They all got immunity from prosecution from FBI. Granted immunity to her close cycle (Mills and Abedin) was extrmely important for shutting down the investigation. 

his change of comey's statement defitionion of Hillary actions from "gross negligence" which is a criminal action if you work with classified documents to "extreme carelessness" was critical in  exonerating Hillary and this in throwing Sanders under the bus.  

What charges and sanctions were lingering

There are at least four legal charges that are implicit in "emailgate" scandal and were applicable to the "bathroom server" case. Violation of NDA was the most provable  among them. Here Hillary is guilty and this is clear for anybody who took time to study the main facts. But several other charges can also led to felony conviction:

  1. [Dropped] Mishandling of classified information. This was the most serious change but due to Comey statement those changes were dropped. Sill it is the fact that Hillary copied all her emails on several USB sticks and gave them to her private lawyer and his staff. That involves the Espionage Act. Section 793(d) which makes it a felony if a person entrusted with “information relating to the national defense” “willfully communicates, delivers [or] transmits” it to an unauthorized person. While in case of server she can claim gross negligence, but passing copies of emails on USB to her lawyer was definitely done willfully and that can be proved. There were several top secret email discovered. Adjusting for the typical for government tendency to overclassify they probably were just secret. But that's enough. Also, most if not all of the Obama--Clinton email exchanges were presumptively classified. Yet, both Obama and Clinton knowingly conducted them not only outside the government’s secure system for classified information but using the private email server.
  2. Lying about the situation with her bathroom server to Congress. This charge was supposedly investigated by FBI after referral by congress of July 12, 2016. See 8 Times Hillary Clinton Lied About Her Emails - Breitbart We know how all such investigation in FBI ended.
  3. RICO changes connected with Clinton Foundation. This was impossible under Comey. Comey refused to answer the question whether FBI is investigating Clinton Foundation because he never intended to do this.
  4. Revealing identities of CIA operatives. This is similar to famous Valeria Plame case. Valeria Plame was the wife of former Ambassador Joseph C. Wilson. Plame had her identity as covert officer of the CIA leaked to the press by members of the George W. Bush administration and subsequently made public.
  5. Obstruction of justice and/or destruction of evidence. Obstruction charges can be laid if a person alters, destroys, or conceals physical evidence, even if he was under no compulsion at any time to produce such evidence. wiping the server clean here might qualify. Often, no actual investigation or substantiated suspicion of a specific incident need exist to support a charge of obstruction of justice.
  6. Attempt to violate government employees disclosure rules by deleting emails from the server. Apparently Hillary’s problems with the FOIA cases will worsen after Comey statement. It is also clear that maintaining private email server was done deliberately to hide information about her activities from public and obstructing the national record of elected officials correspondence. As Dan Metcalfe states in POLITICO, “Hillary’s Email Defense Is Laughable...I should know — I ran FOIA for the U.S. government.”
  7. Violation of State Department procedures and installation of private email server into State Department environment (essentially a Trojan Horse). Which was managed by personnel without any government security clearance. As well as the use of a retail version of Blackberry to access them. Such a setup during the lifetime of the server also include moving the server from her house to unidentified NJ datacenter where backups to the cloud for the server content were accidentally made. Here we can talk about gross negligence.

There are several non-criminal  sanctions that can be applied to Hillary Clinton:

But the quin is the  quin: she is obviously above the law.

The Espionage Act Under Obama and Queen Clinton

Reproduced verbatim from Gaius Publius Picking Up James Comey’s Pieces — What He Did, What He Should Have Done & Why naked capitalism

It turns out that the Espionage Act has become a popular tool of punishment under the Obama administration, which has broadened its application from use against actual espionage to use against unfriendly leakers and whistle-blowers:

Under the Obama administration, seven Espionage Act prosecutions have been related not to traditional espionage but to either withholding information or communicating with members of the media. Out of a total eleven prosecutions under the Espionage Act against government officials accused of providing classified information to the media, seven have occurred since Obama took office.[89] “Leaks related to national security can put people at risk,” the President said at a news conference in 2013. “They can put men and women in uniform that I’ve sent into the battlefield at risk. I don’t think the American people would expect me, as commander in chief, not to be concerned about information that might compromise their missions or might get them killed.”[90]

As Glenn Greenwald (among many others) has recently noted:

Secrecy is a virtual religion in Washington. Those who violate its dogma have been punished in the harshest and most excessive manner – at least when they possess little political power or influence. As has been widely noted, the Obama administration has prosecuted more leakers under the 1917 Espionage Act than all prior administrations combined. Secrecy in DC is so revered that even the most banal documents are reflexively marked classified, making their disclosure or mishandling a felony. As former CIA and NSA Director Michael Hayden said in 2010, “Everything’s secret. I mean, I got an email saying ‘Merry Christmas.’ It carried a top secret NSA classification marking.”

People who leak to media outlets for the selfless purpose of informing the public – Daniel Ellsberg, Tom Drake, Chelsea Manning, Edward Snowden – face decades in prison. Those who leak for more ignoble and self-serving ends – such as enabling hagiography (Leon Panetta, David Petreaus) or ingratiating oneself to one’s mistress (Petraeus) – face career destruction, though they are usually spared if they are sufficiently Important-in-DC. For low-level, powerless Nobodies-in-DC, even the mere mishandling of classified informationwithout any intent to leak but merely to, say, work from home – has resulted in criminal prosecution, career destruction and the permanent loss of security clearance.

Even when no leakage or other damage was contemplated or occurred, the Espionage Act was applied against violators. Here’s what happened to Naval Reserve Engineer Brian Nishimura (link via Greenwald above):

A Naval reservist was sentenced for mishandling classified military materials.

A federal attorney announced Wednesday that Bryan Nishimura of Folsom, California, pleaded guilty to the unauthorized removal and retention of classified materials.

Nishimura, deployed in Afghanistan in 2007 and 2008 as a regional engineer, admitted to downloading classified briefings and digital records onto his personal electronic devices. He carried the materials off base and brought them back to the U.S. when his deployment ended.

An FBI search of Nishimura’s home turned up classified materials, but did not reveal evidence he intended to distribute them.

How was his case handled? He was obviously prosecuted, as the lead paragraph tells us. Then:

He was sentenced to two years of probation and a $7,500 fine, and was ordered to surrender his security clearance. He is barred from seeking a future security clearance.

This is a Navy engineer who took home downloaded briefings and records. We’re not told under what act he was prosecuted, but we don’t need to be told, just that doing what he did was a crime. The Espionage Act is perfectly suited to that crime, if the prosecutors wished to use it.

Here’s a bit from the FBI’s description of Nishimura’s case:

According to court documents, Nishimura was a Naval reservist deployed in Afghanistan in 2007 and 2008. In his role as a Regional Engineer for the U.S. military in Afghanistan, Nishimura had access to classified briefings and digital records that could only be retained and viewed on authorized government computers. Nishimura, however, caused the materials to be downloaded and stored on his personal, unclassified electronic devices and storage media. … In the United States, Nishimura continued to maintain the information on unclassified systems in unauthorized locations, and copied the materials onto at least one additional unauthorized and unclassified system

Sounds like what Clinton did to a T. Should she be prosecuted? Loretta Lynch, speaking through James Comey, doesn’t think so. To understand why not, let’s look at three more notorious and more vigorously prosecuted cases: Jeffrey Sterling, Thomas Drake and Chelsea Manning. Those cases not only reveal why Clinton, in the eyes of many, should be prosecuted; they reveal why she wasn’t.

Jeffrey Sterling, Thomas Drake and Chelsea Manning

This gets to the heart of the problem related to when and why to prosecute. There’s first a question of what should happen and what does happen. Then there’s a question of intent, as in, what intent if any is the target of the law, and what intent is the target of prosecutors who apply the law. These are not the same.

Greenwald doesn’t think Clinton should be prosecuted, since in isolation her crime, as he sees it, doesn’t merit it. What Clinton did was attempt to shield all of her communications to the extent she could, an act that in his mind doesn’t deserve jail time, despite the letter of the law. I would add that we’re talking about applying the Espionage Act after all, and Clinton in no way committed or intended to commit espionage.

But that kind of sensible thinking isn’t what does happen. What does happen is that under Obama, certain people are prosecuted and sentenced very harshly. Greenwald again (bolded emphasis mine):

But this case does not exist in isolation. It exists in a political climate where secrecy is regarded as the highest end, where people have their lives destroyed for the most trivial – or, worse, the most well-intentioned – violations of secrecy laws, even in the absence of any evidence of harm or malignant intent. And these are injustices that Hillary Clinton and most of her stalwart Democratic followers have never once opposed – but rather enthusiastically cheered. In 2011, Army Private Chelsea Manning was charged with multiple felonies and faced decades in prison for leaking documents that she firmly believed the public had the right to see; unlike the documents Clinton recklessly mishandled, none of those was Top Secret. Nonetheless, this is what then-Secretary Clinton said in justifying her prosecution…

Clinton’s justification for Manning’s prosecution is this (emphasis Greenwald’s):

“I think that in an age where so much information is flying through cyberspace, we all have to be aware of the fact that some information which is sensitive, which does affect the security of individuals and relationships, deserves to be protected and we will continue to take necessary steps to do so.

Seems damning in retrospect, especially the emphasized portion. For Clinton, “necessary steps” to protect “sensitive” information that’s “flying through cyberspace” means the following:

In 2010, Chelsea (formerly Bradley) Manning, the United States Army Private First Class accused of the largest leak of state secrets in U.S. history, was charged under Article 134 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, which incorporates parts of the Espionage Act 18 U.S.C. § 793(e). At the time, critics worried that the broad language of the Act could make news organizations, and anyone who reported, printed or disseminated information from WikiLeaks, subject to prosecution, although former prosecutors pushed back, citing Supreme Court precedent expanding First Amendment protections.[103] On July 30, 2013, following a judge-only trial by court-martial lasting eight weeks, Army judge Colonel Denise Lind convicted Manning on six counts of violating the Espionage Act, among other infractions.[98]

And the punishment was this:

Manning was sentenced in August 2013 to 35 years’ imprisonment, with the possibility of parole in the eighth year, and to be dishonorably discharged from the Army.[2]

That harsh punishment doesn’t count the torture she endured while in pre-trial detention. The fate that befell Chelsea Manning was (and is) draconian. Again, in retrospect Clinton’s words at the time are damning.

Let’s look at two more cases, starting with Jeffrey Sterling. As you read, see if you can see the thread that ties these three cases together:

Jeffrey Alexander Sterling, a former CIA agent was indicted under the [Espionage] Act in January 2011 for alleged unauthorized disclosure of national defense information to James Risen, a New York Times reporter, in 2003 regarding his book State of War. The indictment described his motive as revenge for the CIA’s refusal to allow him to publish his memoirs and its refusal to settle his racial discrimination lawsuit against the Agency. Others have described him as telling Risen about a backfired CIA plot against Iran in the 1990s.[91]

But the evidence of wrong-doing was almost non-existent, flimsily circumstantial, and the conviction relied heavily on the jury’s reaction to the government’s presentation of motive.

The government’s case consisted mostly of records of emails and phone calls between Sterling and Risen that began in 2001 and continued into 2005. The emails were very short, just a line or so, and did not reference any CIA programs. The phone calls were mostly short too, some just a few seconds, and the government did not introduce recordings or transcripts of any of them.

Sterling was represented by two lawyers, Edward MacMahon Jr. and Barry Pollack. In his opening statement, MacMahon pointed to the lack of hard evidence against his client.

“Mr. Trump is a fine lawyer,” MacMahon said. “If he had an email with details of these programs or a phone call, you would have heard it, and you’re not going to hear it in this case .… Mr. Trump told you that [Sterling] spoke to Risen. Did you hear where, when, or anything about what happened? No. That’s because there isn’t any such evidence of it whatsoever .… You don’t see a written communication to Mr. Risen from Mr. Sterling about the program at all, no evidence they even met in person.”

Nevertheless, despite this lack of real evidence:

[T]he jury convicted Sterling, based on what the judge, Leonie Brinkema, described at the sentencing as “very powerful circumstantial evidence.” She added, “In a perfect world, you’d only have direct evidence, but many times that’s not the case in a criminal case.” …

A few minutes before three in the afternoon, Judge Brinkema said that Sterling would go to prison for three and a half years. This was far below the sentencing guidelines — and was seen as a rebuke of the prosecution’s portrayal of Sterling as a traitor who had to be locked away for a long time. But that wasn’t much comfort for Sterling or his wife, because he would nonetheless be locked away. After the hearing ended, Sterling walked to the front row of seats to console his sobbing wife. You could hear her wails in the courtroom.

His lawyers requested that he be allowed to serve his sentence in his home state of Missouri, so that his wife and other family members could easily visit him. Earlier this week, Sterling reported to the prison that was selected for him. It is in Colorado.

We still don’t know for sure that Sterling was the person who leaked information to reporter James Risen. Nothing showing that they worked together was presented in court. Nothing. Yet the prosecutor did a good job of painting Sterling as “a traitor” motivated by “anger, bitterness, selfishness,” adding, “The defendant struck back at the CIA because he thought he had been treated unfairly. He had sued the agency for discrimination and demanded that they pay him $200,000 to settle his claim. When the agency refused, he struck back with the only weapon he had: secrets, the agency’s secrets.”

On that basis and almost no evidence, the jury convicted.

Finally, in the case of Thomas Drake, mentioned above by both Wheeler and Greenwald, this happened:

In April 2010, Thomas Andrews Drake, an official with the National Security Agency (NSA), was indicted under 18 U.S.C. § 793(e) for alleged willful retention of national defense information. The case arose from investigations into his communications with Siobhan Gorman of the Baltimore Sun and Diane Roark of the House Intelligence Committee as part of his attempt to blow the whistle on several issues including the NSA’s Trailblazer project.[92][93][94][95][96] Considering the prosecution of Drake, investigative journalist Jane Mayer wrote that “Because reporters often retain unauthorized defense documents, Drake’s conviction would establish a legal precedent making it possible to prosecute journalists as spies.”[97]

What sets Drake, Sterling and Manning apart from Clinton in the way their violations of the Espionage Act are treated? It’s not just her elite status.

Why Is Clinton’s Case Different?

Clinton may well have been let off because the Justice Department thought prosecution of the out of question and powerful factions were interested in preventing Trump from wining the election and throwing Sanders under the bus. .

Given all the arcane rules of classification, and the fact that Clinton, put plainly, is not a spy. She is just is Queen. that's why Comey and Lynch probably decided that prosecution was pointless.  Yet espionage was also never the intent of Sterling, Drake or Manning, yet they had the proverbial book thrown at them, and more. (Read the rest of the article on Sterling to see how his prosecution nearly destroyed his life, literally.)

The government’s behavior in these four cases show clear facoritism and attampts to sqwipe the dirt under the carpet. It could be argued that the motives of Sterling, Drake and Manning were more pure then Hillary (for whom the main motive was greed) --  whistle-blowers intend to perform a societal good, whereas Clinton’s motives were more self-centered, less morally defensible, and clearly illegal. Starting from deletion of her emails and attempts to move all of her communication beyond the reach of FOIA records requests. (She may have had other motives, such as shielding the Clinton Foundation from embarrassing disclosures, or worse.)

Which brings us to the the matter of intent — not the intent contemplated by the law (intent to steal or to otherwise mishandle government secrets), but the intent contemplated by the prosecutors in applying the law. Look again at the Sterling conviction and what the prosecution relied on to get it. The man was painted by his prosecutors as, in effect, evil — a man whose goal was to harm the government, a betrayer, a traitor, motivated by anger, bitterness, selfishness, a man taking revenge. Though most stark in Sterling’s prosecution (and in Manning’s torture), you see this thread in all three whistle-blower cases.

What separates these cases from Clinton’s is a very selective desire of the FBI to punish “evil deeds,” attempts to harm the country. Espionage Act is just a tool of  punishment in such cases. So it was selectively wielded in such a heavy way to frighten others. Note that this initial filter — looking for who has done the kind of harm deserving of punishment, as opposed to looking for who violated the law — precedes the prosecution itself. that's not a rule of law. That's about the deference in treatment of aristocracy and common people.

Yes, this is selective prosecution the FBI elites is protecting Democratic Party elite.  It mercilessly crush the perceived enemies of that state, while protecting its friends from the same "transgressions".  In other words, the key to determining who will be prosecuted is indeed social status, but not intent to violate the law.

Marcy Wheeler called the real crime of Sterling and Drake “disloyalty” and not a violation of the Espionage Act itself. Wheeler (my emphasis):

I can only imagine Comey came to his improper public prosecutorial opinion via one of two mental tricks. Either he — again, not the prosecutor — decided the only crime at issue was mishandling classified information (elsewhere in his statement he describes having no evidence that thousands of work emails were withheld from DOJ with ill intent, which dismisses another possible crime), and from there he decided either that it’d be a lot harder to prosecute Hillary Clinton (or David Petraeus) than it would be someone DOJ spent years maligning like Sterling or Drake. Or maybe he decided that there are no indications that Hillary is disloyal to the US.

Understand, though: with Sterling and Drake, DOJ decided they were disloyal to the US, and then used their alleged mishandling of classified information as proof that they were disloyal to the US (Drake ultimately plead to Exceeding Authorized Use of a Computer).

Ultimately, it involves arbitrary decisions about who is disloyal to the US, and from that a determination that the crime of mishandling classified information occurred.

Comey statement

Comey  who (as of December 2017) is considered by many as the part of the FBI "gang of three" hijaced the role of Justice Department and for some reason decided to exonerate Hillary all by himself. After a brief introduction, Comey states the FBI was looking into:

“whether classified information was improperly stored or transmitted on [Clinton’s] personal system in violation of the Federal statute that makes it a felony to mishandle classified information either intentionally or in a grossly negligent way; or a second statute making it a misdemeanor to knowingly remove classified information from appropriate systems or storage facilities.”

And he presented the clear evidence of Hillary's guilt because it was simply impossible to hide. Of the approximately 30,000 emails Hillary Clinton turned over to State in 2014, the FBI found

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; eight contained ‘Confidential’ information at the time.”

See Supplement 1: FBI director's statement on Hillary Clinton email investigation

But his conclusion completely contradicted the evidence and Hillary "walked free." Which in terms of election cycle of 2016 was equivalent to depriving Sanders any chance to be at the top of Democratic Party ticket. In other words FBI engaged in clearly political activity and has chosen its own favorite in the Presidential race.

Why she was not indicted by FBI for mishandling of classified information?

“If it were me, I would have been out the door and probably in jail.”

General Michael Flynn during CNN appearance.

This chain of events has reinforced the American public’s perception that there are now no prosecutions of unlawful conduct by persons of sufficient wealth, power and influence who consider themselves to be above the law.

Because there was conspiracy within FBI to exonerate her of any wrongdoing. It’s a cold hard facts:

The case was highly politicized, especially after impromptu meeting of Bill Clinton and Loretta Lynch. For some reason Obama also behaves as if he wants to join Clinton Foundation after the end of his term in office. Who in his sound mind can endorse a person under FBI investigation. Only constitutional scholars do that ;-).

Looks like Comey was forced to lie about several aspects of this Clinton case and later was caught during congressional hearings (and in couple of cases when cought he, surprisingly, instantly agreed that that was a lie):

Dou Gen , July 13, 2016 at 9:45 am

This article doesn't explain why a punishment such as the one given to Petraeus was not considered by Comey or the DOJ. Petraeus was an elite insider who was not a spy and did not threaten the state, yet he still received a minor punishment so as not to delegitimatize the legal system and in order to give at least a minimal impression of fairness.

Since Comey said it was possible - and most experts say very possible - that foreign governments read Hillary's emails, she may have caused significant damage to the US national interest over four years.

Therefore even a loyal elite could expect to be at least fined for such gross negligence. Why wouldn't a fine and a reprimand and/or temporary loss of security clearance be normal even for a loyal DC insider? This suggests that the power of the Clinton Machine and its real-world ability to deliver retribution was the deciding factor in the lack of any suggestion of indictment. Comey surely wants to keep his job.

The article also fails to deal with the fact that Comey mistakenly claimed that only one person had ever been prosecuted under the 1917 Espionage Act. This is clearly not the case, and you list some of those prosecuted. There have also been several other convictions, including US vs. McGuinness in 1992 (see Andrew C. McCarthy, "Military Prosecutions Show That A Gross Negligence Prosecution Would Not Unfairly Single Out Mrs. Clinton" National Review (7/7/2016), CIA director John Deutch in 1997 (pardoned by Bill Clinton), James Hitselberger (who carried classified documents off his naval base in 1997 and simply kept them), and Jason Brezler, a Marine Major who sent classified information about a dangerous Afghan mayor in order to warn a colleague in 2014 (he is now appealing his conviction based on Comey's criteria).

Also please see Jared Beck, "Why Hillary Clinton's Emails Matter: A Legal Analysis" (6/6/2016): Beck lists 4 convictions under 793(f) alone. Also see Beck's "Comey's Volley, Or The Indictment That Wasn't" (7/11/2016). You also need to deal with the question of why Comey ignored the obvious fact that Hillary willfully and knowingly broke State Department rules in setting up the private server and therefore knew she was endangering security. The fact that Comey gave a false number of prosecutions under s. 793 and avoided mention of willful, knowing acts by Hillary suggests his decision to oppose indictment was a political decision, not a legal decision.

The article also fails to deal with the theory that Comey, taking into account various evidence, such as his talks with DOJ attorneys and the fact that Lynch agreed to meet Bill Clinton, decided that that there was no possibility that the Democrat-staffed DOJ would indict Hillary. Therefore Comey decided to make the best of a difficult situation by giving a two-part speech that first laid out reasons why Hillary could be indicted and then explained that it was not "reasonable" to indict her. "Reasonable" is of course a legal term, but it also covers a variety of meanings, including political motives. Do you reject this theory, or were you just unaware of it?

Criminality of Hillary actions aside, the whole scene reminds me Godfather II.

Why did Hillary Clinton need to use a private server exclusively? I ask why Clinton needed this server in my latest YouTube segment, and I’m especially interested in learning why from Hillary supporters. The answer could very likely lead to Hillary Clinton’s indictment, which would then automatically lead to a Bernie Sanders nomination and Bernie destroying Trump by 8 points in the general election.

On CNN, Lt. General Michael Flynn stated that Hillary Clinton should “drop out” of the presidential race and states “If it were me, I would have been out the door and probably in jail.” I mentioned Lt. General Flynn’s views on the FBI investigation during my latest CNN appearance.

In regards to the unique aspects of the FBI’s email investigation, POLITIFACT states “Although some former secretaries of state occasionally used personal emails for official business, Clinton is the only one who never once used an @state.gov email address in the era of email.”

Thus, asking why she’s the only Secretary of State who refused to use an @state.gov email address is not only relevant, but vital to understanding the severity of the FBI’s investigation. As Dan Metcalfe states in POLITICO, “Hillary’s Email Defense Is Laughable...I should know—I ran FOIA for the U.S. government.” Saying others did worse also can’t explain the fact 100 FBI agents have worked on the case, especially since there’s never been a presidential candidate in American history linked to an ongoing FBI investigation.

National Review suggested "her lax handling of our most sensitive national-security information, Clinton all but served it to foreign intelligence services on a platter." (National Review):

Clinton held one of the highest offices of the United States, and communications involving high-level intelligence were a routine part of her job. Despite her protestations to the contrary, it was inevitable that classified information would be exchanged in her “private” e-mails and stored on her “private server.”

What was inevitable is now undeniable. Inspectors general from both the intelligence community and the State Department have reported to Congress that Clinton’s e-mails contain classified information. And remember, they have been able to review only portions of the 30,000-odd e-mails Clinton deigned to surrender (in paper-copy form) on the State Department’s demand, two years after she departed.

Regarding the access to sensitive information, the position of the Secretary of State is identical to the position of Army Generals and high level officials at CIA or any other intelligence agency. For all practical purposes  State Department is an intelligence  agency.  Especially taking into account State Department role in collecting intelligence information and staging color revolutions abroad. A similar level official at CIA or Pentagon would receive much harsher treatment.

But no even minor punishment  was imposed on the Queen: despite "bathroom server" scandal and a clear, provable violation of NDA she signed, Hillary Clinton retained her security clearance (mcclatchydc.com):

Hillary Clinton retains a security clearance allowing her access to classified information despite an FBI inquiry into her handling of sensitive government information on the private email account she used during her tenure as secretary of state.

... ... ...

While Clinton has kept her clearance, it’s common practice to suspend them while an investigation or internal inquiry is ongoing, according to some national security experts on Capitol Hill and in private practice.

... ... ...

Whether you’re a member of the military, a high-ranking executive branch official or anybody else with a security clearance, people should be treated equally,” said Grassley, R-Iowa. “If rank-and-file military and intelligence community employees have their clearances suspended during security investigations, then senior officials should not get any special exemptions.”

The key here is the role Obama and his administration in the cover-up.  He was also complicit in Mrs. Clinton’s misconduct by communicating with her on unprotected private server, which was set-up by personnel from Clinton Foundation. While, most probably, he personally does feel much sympathy for "this woman", the "preservation of legacy" and the danger of Trump winning  presidential race dictated the polices that helped to get her off the hook.

What is interesting  that this way Obama undermined his legacy. 

Comparison with General Petraeus case

General Petraeus ( who was the most promising GOP candidate for the current Presidential election) transgressions (aka Petraeus scandal - Wikipedia ) are the most relevant previous similar case. He also did not have any criminal intent that FBI director Comey used to dismiss changes against Hillary Clinton. Moreover his only correspondent has top security clearness while multiple people with who Hillary Clinton shared her email did not. Congressman Issa called this a double standard Congressman Issa Says FBI Director Comey Is Lying About Hillary Clinton's Criminal Intent! - YouTube

They are minimal in comparison with what Hillary Clinton did: Hillary Clinton Emailed Names of US Intelligence Officials, Unclassified. He revealed the information to a single person (his biographer), who was an army intelligence officer with top security clearance. While Hillary Clinton revealed her emails to her private lawyer and his staff as well as indirectly to all server administrators of the "bathroom server" and most probably to any foreign intelligence agency who was interested (although most probably suspect that this was set-up -- a honeypot ;-). Such level of incompetence  might  server as layer of protection (as in famous Otto von Bismarck  quote “God has a special providence for fools, drunkards, and the United States of America.” ).

She also potentially guilty in lying to Congress under the oath, which is a serious crime. But not for the Queen.

The punishment for him included two year probation and fine. In no way Hillary deserved less then that. See for example How Gen. David Petraeus Gets It, And Hillary Clinton Still Doesn't ( huffingtonpost.com, 09/29/2015):

At one point, we thought General David Petraeus would be a strong candidate for U.S. President. Certainly against this crop of GOP candidates, he’d be the clear front-runner. But then, he shared classified information, and more than that, with his biographer-turned-mistress (Paula Broadwell), according to ABC News, undoing an impressive military career, with plenty of political upside. ...instead of offering the typical hubris, misdirection, or blame shifting, he thought it was important to again show true remorse for his actions

... ... ...

Hillary Clinton, the former New York Senator and Secretary of State, has been the anti-Petraeus. As of last week, she still was claiming to the Associated Press that she had done nothing wrong and her actions were allowed. Even in her “apology,” she was still claiming it was just a “mistake” according to Fox News. Well, here’s what kind of “mistake” Clinton’s actions might cause. The U.S. National Security Agency Chief, Admiral Mike Rogers, explained that it would really help the NSA if someone like Vladimir Putin or the Supreme Leader of Iran had done the same, using classified information on a private email, as noted in The Guardian.

When classified information gets in the hands of our enemies and rivals, bad things happen for our beleaguered intelligence forces. Sometimes, it leads to the capture, and possible deaths, of our agents and sources. There’s no excuse for putting them in any more harm than they already face. General Petraeus gets that it is wrong. But as Clinton blames Republicans for her woes on NBC’s Meet the Press, it’s clear she still just doesn’t get it.

Please note that as Andrew C. McCarthy pointed in his June 11, 2015 article ( National Review ) when Obama’s Justice Department prosecuted former CIA director David Petraeus for mishandling classified information, it included notes of “defendant DAVID HOWELL PETRAEUS’s discussions with the President of the United States of America.” That completely destroys Hillary Clinton’s defense that the classified e-mails were not “marked” as such.  Well, Petraeus’s notes were not marked either. But this was not a problem to his prosecution. Here is how General Petraeus  transgressions were revealed -- it also included the use of email:

It is reasonable to assume that Hotmail mailbox is on the same or higher level of security as private email server Hillary Clinton used. It also did not have two factor authentication (but Hotmail controls from which Ip address you are trying to connect -- it you trevel abroad you will not be able to connect without addtional procedure of verificatin of your identity) and mailbox contained sensitive information. If you read Wikipedia article about emailgate ( Hillary Clinton email controversy) and compare it with General Petraeus transgressions the question of double standards definitely comes to mind.

So It is reasonable to assume that a minimum punishment for Hillary was two year probation and fine

Effectively pardoned by Obama with the help of FBI "gang of three"

"They were careless people ... they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness or whatever it was that kept them together, and let other people clean up the mess they had made . . . . ”

― F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby

FBI director said Crooked Hillary compromised our national security. No charges. Wow! #RiggedSystem

-- Donald Trump Twit, Jul 5, 2016

In order to get Hillary Clinton off the hook FBI rewrote the existing and pretty strict statute:

Although denying that he was effectively re-writing the language of any relevant statute to reach his conclusion, Director Comey asserted that it was appropriate to ignore the express “gross negligence” element in one such statute dealing with the gathering of defense-related information (18 U.S. Code §793(F)). He based his decision to ignore the “gross negligence” statutory element, despite his own statement that Hillary Clinton had been “extremely careless” in the “handling of very sensitive, highly classified information,” on his understanding of past precedent.

He explained that federal prosecutors have brought only one case based on gross negligence in the last 99 years because, in part, of constitutional concerns with convictions in cases where there is no showing of criminal intent. He also concluded that it would be unfair to embark on what he called “celebrity hunting” by singling out Hillary Clinton for prosecution for “gross negligence” when only one such case has been brought in 99 years.

Similarly, the director disputed that the requisite criminal intent was provable under a separate criminal statute involving the unauthorized removal and retention of classified documents or material in an unauthorized location (18 U.S. Code § 1924), even though that is precisely what Hillary Clinton did.

Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) had an exchange with Director Comey that set out the case for concluding that Hillary Clinton had criminal intent based on such circumstantial evidence. It is worth quoting from at length (Comey's Peculiar Explanations Frontpage Mag):

“GOWDY: …I’m going to ask you to put on your old hat. False exculpatory statements — they are used for what?

COMEY: Well, either for a substantive prosecution, or for evidence of intent in a criminal prosecution.

GOWDY: Exactly. Intent, and consciousness of guilt, right? Is that right?

COMEY: Right.

GOWDY: Consciousness of guilt, and intent. In your old job, you would prove intent, as you just referenced, by showing the jury evidence of a complex scheme that was designed for the very purpose of concealing the public record. And you would be arguing, in addition to concealment, the destruction that you and I just talked about, or certainly the failure to preserve. You would argue all of that under the heading of intent.

You would also be arguing the pervasiveness of the scheme: when it started, when it ended, and the number of e-mails, whether they were originally classified or up-classified. You would argue all of that under the heading of intent…

She affirmatively rejected efforts to give her a state.gov account, she kept these private e-mails for almost two years, and only turned them over to Congress because we found out she had a private e-mail account.

So you have a rogue e-mail system set up before she took the oath of office; thousands of what we now know to be classified e-mails, some of which were classified at the time; one of her more frequent e-mailed comrades was, in fact, hacked, and you don’t know whether or not she was; and this scheme took place over long period of time and resulted in the destruction of public records — and yet you say there is insufficient evidence of intent?

You say she was “extremely careless,” but not intentionally so. Now, you and I both know intent is really difficult to prove. Very rarely do defendants announce, “On this day, I intend to break this criminal code section. Just to put everyone on notice, I am going to break the law on this day.” It never happens that way. You have to do it with circumstantial evidence — or, if you’re Congress, and you realize how difficult it is to prove specific intent, you will formulate a statute that allows for “gross negligence.”

Even before FBI Director James Comey announcement chances of her indictment after Obama announced his support of her candidacy were next to zero. Especially after what was billed as a private meeting on Bill Clinton and Loretta Lynch:

But she indicated it had nothing to do with the controversies swirling around the presumptive Democratic presidential candidate.

'Our conversation was a great deal about grandchildren, it was primarily social about our travels and he mentioned golf he played in Phoenix,' Lynch said.

Lynch's husband apparently was along for the trip as well.

'I did see President Clinton at the Phoenix airport as he was leaving and spoke to myself and my husband on the plane,' she said.

The tarmac talk took place at Sky Harbor International Airport.

Usually well-informed The Washington Post promoted this theory as early as March 8 (Why Hillary Clinton is unlikely to be indicted over her private email server). "This woman" is above the law:

For those of you salivating — or trembling — at the thought of Hillary Clinton being clapped in handcuffs as she prepares to deliver her acceptance speech at the Democratic convention this summer: deep, cleansing breath. Based on the available facts and the relevant precedents, criminal prosecution of Clinton for mishandling classified information in her emails is extraordinarily unlikely.

There are two main statutory hooks. Title 18, Section 1924, a misdemeanor, makes it a crime for a government employee to “knowingly remove” classified information “without authority and with the intent to retain such documents or materials at an unauthorized location.” Prosecutors used this provision in securing a guilty plea from former CIA director David H. Petraeus, who was sentenced to probation and fined $100,000. But there are key differences between Petraeus and Clinton.

... ... ...

Another possible prosecutorial avenue involves the Espionage Act. Section 793(d) makes it a felony if a person entrusted with “information relating to the national defense” “willfully communicates, delivers [or] transmits” it to an unauthorized person. That might be a stretch given the “willfully” requirement.

Section 793(f) covers a person with access to “national defense” information who through “gross negligence permits the same to be removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of his trust.” The government has used the “gross negligence” provision to prosecute a Marine sergeant who accidentally put classified documents in his gym bag, then hid them in his garage rather than returning them, and an Air Force sergeant who put classified material in a Dumpster so he could get home early.

You can well think about Hillary Clinton server as a "dumpster". Copying emails to USB sticks is probably worse that putting classified documents in a gym bad. Former Attorney General Michael Mukasey highlights that Hillary has violated at least 4 federal criminal laws: #18USC1924 #18USC793f #18USC2071 #18USC1519 #Hillary2016's private server violated at least 4 federal criminal laws: #18USC1924 #18USC793f #18USC2071 #18USC1519 ( twitter.com )

As Andrew C. McCarthy noted in http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/437479/fbi-rewrites-federal-law-let-hillary-hook 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.

But those consideration are now mute. On July 5, FBI Director James Comey has completed his investigation of Hillary Clinton's private email server. His agency recommended to the Justice Department that Clinton not face criminal prosecution, despite calling Clinton and her staff, 'extremely careless.' As one commenter to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J3XvTonyUeg noted:

toasteh2 hours ago

Clinton won in the legal arena but could yet lose in the court of public opinion. Now Hillary opponents were given enough ammunition by the FBI report to keep the issue alive and emphasize the issue of trust until election day. Moreover, as Hillary Clinton was essentially put above the law that can double efforts in areas were she was not cleared by FBI investigation.

Political fallout for Hillary Clinton started along the lines that she’s inherently untrustworthy or, in Trump’s words: “a world-class liar”. Even as Comey helped clear the way for Clinton to be legally exonerated, he rebuked her for being “extremely careless” in using a private email server for classified information, adding that lesser government officials might have faced administrative sanction. Contrary to what Comey said in such cases intent does not matter.

In other way Donald Trump powerful ammunition to attack Hillary Clinton about her mishandling of classified information and lying about it till the election day. Just listen to C-Span viewers reaction: C-SPAN Callers VERY DISAPPOINTED In The FBI Decision Not To Charge Hillary Clinton - YouTube. Here are some comments to this recording:

Ross Meldrum

When Comey stated there would be no recommendation for prosecution what I think he was indirectly saying was that no one in the Obama administration or the DOJ is willing to bring an indictment or prosecute her. Even though there is ample evidence of criminality. Obama does not want prosecution because Obama would be called as a witness and found to be guilty himself of knowing she was using an unsecured server. Thus making him guilty as well.

Clooz

people the age of these callers allowed Clinton's election cheating to be successful by voting for her. We had the chance for an anti corruption, for the people candidate, and we threw it away for "first women president" or some bull. Even without the indictment I hope we get another candidate. The world is changing, we don't need corporations, lobbyist, and politicians that only care about the advancement of their careers!

Dr. Tim Williams

With the latest announcement from the FBI shows that Hillary Clinton was very negligent during her tenure as Secretary of State. A series of gross negligence moves concerning classified e-mails is equivalent to what the military terms as a dereliction of duty in her performance as Secretary of State. As the Democratic convention looms ahead the findings by the FBI has to be a real wake up call for every delegate to consider the weakness of a Clinton candidacy. It has to be noted that Senator Sanders who the media continues to ignore has moved the nation into realizing that change is needed to secure that our democratic process returns to the way our founding fathers intended. Make no mistake that if Hillary Clinton is the Democratic nominee leaves open the more than probability that Trump will win in November. Or if the wheels of corruption by the DNC and the already super delegates that are being pulled by Clinton's purse strings succeed at striping the nomination away from Senator Sanders manage to convince enough voters in November it will be a sad day for all Americans.

Trish McRae

The democratic leaders need to lead and ask for Hillary to step down and allow Bernie to be the nominee. Congress needs to make sure Loretta Lynch indicts Hillary for her crimes. Bernie is honest and brings much enthusiasm. I don't understand why I constantly hear the media asking Sanders to step down when Hillary is the worst candidate. Watching the election fraud videos from San Diego and not hearing about any of it in the news is disgusting. It feels like Hillary brought much corruption to our party. I am a lifelong democrat and will never vote for Hillary. I may have to leave it.

"We Are Not Weasels": FBI director James Comey Testifies on Clinton Email Probe

This testimony provided few additional facts about the case but it fully revealed Comey duplicity (he objected to calling him and his associates weasels saying ‘We Are Not Weasels’ WSJ ;-). In reality he, McCabe  and Strzok were worse then that.   

Congressman Gowdy asked Director Comey point-blank if Clinton’s testimony that she did not e-mail “any classified material to anyone on my e-mail” was true. Comey said it was not true. Was Clinton telling the truth when she said that she used only one device while Secretary of State? Comey said she used multiple devices. Did she return all work-related e-mails to the State Department as she had claimed? No was the reply. “We found work-related emails, thousands that were not returned,” Comey said.

So Clinton was instantly caught in multiple lies. But not that Comey FBI will pay any attention to this (Hillary never  testified under oath in this case). They were now concerted in protection their shaky reputation. And only that.

There were also funny exchange in which Comey suggested that Hillary might be not "sophisticated enough" ( read "stupid" )  to understand that classified markings are present (in other word he stated that she is not qualified for any government position above janitor):

FBI Director James Comey is suggesting that it's possible Hillary Clinton may not have been able to identify classified markings on emails.

Comey's investigation found that there were 113 emails that were sent or received by Clinton containing classified material, contradicting Clinton's previous statements.

Comey says under questioning from a Republican lawmaker that they asked Clinton about three emails that bore "C'' markings indicating that the documents are classified. He says there's a question of whether Clinton was "sophisticated enough" to understand what the C markings meant.

North Carolina Rep. Mark Meadows says a reasonable person would think someone who is the secretary of state would understand what that means. Meadows says after Clinton's time in the Senate and at the State Department, "that's hard to believe."

Looks like there were multiple servers in the basement and other details revealing that Hillary tried to destroy the evidence. Here are some interesting fragments:

  1. Trey Gowdy GRILLS James Comey On Hillary Clinton Emails 7-7-16 - YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bC1Mc6-RDyQ
  2. Palmer Questioning FBI Director Comey - YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WMg9CjtsykY
  3. Jason Chaffetz Digs in on Comey at Start of Capitol Hearing ‘We Are Mystified and Confused’ - YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g2vyE4QWk1o
  4. Rep. Hurd Grills James Comey - YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T119FRJRnyU
  5. Highlights James Comey Testimony in Clinton Email Hearing - YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GsYOfAZZq_s
  6. Rep. Jody Hice questions FBI Director James Comey (Full video) - YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LyK5xPafkGI
  7. Georgia Reps. grill James Comey - YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8zfugJDD6jk
  8. Clinton dodges questions after FBI interrogation - YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BzFIVntNOck

Hillary’s problems with the FOIA civil suits

Apparently there are some still problems for Hillary in view of FOIA cases. There are approximately 38 civil suits related to this statute. Moreover:

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.

But Hillary secured her top place on Democratic Party ticket and we know what happened after that.

One news from the Congressional hearing on July 7, 2016 is that there will be a new referral to the FBI to investigate Hillary Clinton for possible perjury. That was a naive move in view of the role that FBI played in suppressing any evidence of Hillary wrongdoing. See Perjury Investigation of Hillary

Attention now switches to Clinton foundation shady dealing: RICO statute might be applied

In case some powerful forces will probably block Trump intention to investigate Clinton Foundation. Investigation probably was started by FBI around September of 2015: Clinton Foundation Clinton Email Investigation Timeline  and then suppressed. Still some work was probably done that allows later to take over the investigation by congressional committees. And they might be more aggressive in pursuing the truth: 

September 2, 2015: Congressional committees are interested in the Clinton Foundation’s financial dealings.

The Daily Beast reports that regardless of what becomes of the FBI’s investigations into Clinton’s emails and private server, “more than one [Congressional] committee is interested in Hillary’s emails, far beyond the Benghazi investigation. Congressional investigators are looking into issues beyond classification, to include possible dirty financial deals” that benefitted Bill and Hillary Clinton and/or their Clinton Foundation.

An unnamed senior Congressional staffer says, “This was about a lot more than just some classified emails, and we’ll get to the bottom of it. But we’re happy to let the FBI do the heavy lifting for right now.” The staffer adds, “[N]ow the media won’t let go—and the Bureau definitely won’t. I wouldn’t want to be Hillary right now.” (The Daily Beast, 9/2/2015)

September 27, 2015: Clinton claims she did not have any work-related emails regarding the Clinton Foundation while secretary of state.

Clinton is asked by journalist Chuck Todd on Meet The Press about her decision to delete 31,000 emails because they were allegedly personal in nature: “I’m just curious, would anything having to do with the Clinton Foundation, would that have been personal or work?”

Clinton replies, “Well, it would depend. You know, I did not communicate with the foundation. Other people in the State Department did. In accordance with the rules that had been adopted.”

Then Todd asks, “So any of these deleted emails are not going to be foundation-related at all?”

Clinton responds, “Well, they might be, you know, ‘There’s going to be a meeting,’ or, ‘There’s this.’ But not anything that relates to the work of the State Department. That was handled by, you know, the professionals and others in the State Department.” (NBC News, 9/27/2015)

Autumn 2015: State Department investigators issue a subpoena to the Clinton Foundation.

They are “seeking documents about the charity’s projects that may have required approval from the federal government during Hillary Clinton’s term as secretary of state,” according to the Washington Post. The subpoena includes a request for records about Huma Abedin, “a longtime Clinton aide who for six months in 2012 was employed simultaneously by the State Department, the foundation, Clinton’s personal office, and a private consulting firm with ties to the Clintons.” Steve Linick, the State Department’s inspector general, is behind the subpoena.

In February 2016, the Post will report that the “full scope and status of the inquiry” is not clear. Inspector general investigative powers are limited. For instance, they can obtain documents, but they cannot compel testimony. (The Washington Post, 2/11/2016)

November 17, 2015: The Clinton Foundation is accused of being a money laundering front to benefit the Clintons.

Longtime investigative journalist Ken Silverstein writes an expose about the foundation for Harper’s Magazine. He asserts: “If the Justice Department and law enforcement agencies do their jobs, the foundation will be closed and its current and past trustees, who include Bill, Hillary, and Chelsea Clinton, will be indicted. That’s because their so-called charitable enterprise has served as a vehicle to launder money and to enrich Clinton family friends.”

As one example, Silverstein notes that the Clinton Foundation has received more than $1 billion to purchase HIV/AIDS drugs for poor people around the world. “However, a unit set up to receive the money…clearly spent far, far less than it took in. In fact, the unit’s accounting practices were so shoddy that its license was revoked by the state of Massachusetts, where it was headquartered.”

An unnamed “money-laundering expert and former intelligence officer based in the Middle East who had access to the foundation’s confidential banking information” claims that all investigators would have to do “is match up Hillary’s travel as secretary of state with Bill’s speaking arrangements. Bill heads out to foreign countries and he gets paid huge amounts of money for a thirty-minute speech and then she heads out for an official visit as a favor. She racked up more miles than any secretary of state [other than Condoleezza Rice] and that’s one of the reasons why. How can they get away with that?” The Clinton Foundation has not commented on the allegations. (Harper’s Magazine, 11/17/2015)

November 19, 2015: The Washington Post publishes an in-depth analysis of the history of Bill and Hillary Clinton’s political fundraising.

It reveals that the Clintons “have built an unrivaled global network of donors while pioneering fundraising techniques that have transformed modern politics,” raising more money than any other politicians in US history. All their fundraising combined over four decades in politics has raised at least $3 billion. $2 billion of that has gone to the Clinton Foundation and another billion has gone to their various political campaigns, especially presidential races. Additionally, since 2000, the Clintons were directly paid more than $150 million from giving speeches. The Clintons have a loyal core of about 2,700 rich political contributors who make up less than one percent of donors who gave more than $200 but have given 21 percent of all the money. The Post comments, “The Clintons’ steady cultivation of financial benefactors—many of whom had interests before the government—has led to charges of conflicts of interest and impropriety, such as Bill Clinton’s end-of-term presidential pardons sought by donors. […] Most of all, the Clintons have excelled at leveraging access to their power and celebrity.” (The Washington Post, 11/19/2015)

January 28, 2016: Clinton’s email scandal could be linked to Clinton Foundation corruption.

John Schindler, a former National Security Agency (NSA) analyst and counterintelligence officer, writes, “Why Ms. Clinton and her staff refused to use State Department email for official business is an open and important question. Suspicion inevitably falls on widespread allegations of pay-for-play, a corrupt scheme whereby foreign entities gave cash to the Clinton Global Initiative in exchange for Ms. Clinton’s favors at Foggy Bottom [State Department headquarters]. […] Regardless of whether Ms. Clinton was engaged in political corruption, she unquestionably cast aside security as secretary of state.” The Clinton Global Initiative is one of the Clinton Foundation’s major projects. (The New York Observer, 1/28/2016)

March 23, 2016: A Congressperson calls the Clinton Foundation a “sham” charity.

Representative Marsha Blackburn (R) sends a letter to the FTC [Federal Trade Commission], asking it to investigate the Clinton Foundation’s nonprofit status. “The FTC has a history of investigating ‘sham’ charities for false and deceptive statements and should initiate a review of the foundation. […] Consistent with the FTC’s mission and precedent, we request that you review [my] allegations to determine if the Foundation is a ‘sham’ charity.” (The Seaton Post, 3/23/2016)

April 6, 2016: Best-selling political author Naomi Klein criticizes the Clinton Foundation.

In an article for the Nation, she writes, “The mission of the Clinton Foundation can be distilled as follows: There is so much private wealth sloshing around our planet…that every single problem on earth, no matter how large, can be solved by convincing the ultra-rich to do the right things with their loose change. […] The problem with Clinton World is structural. It’s the way in which these profoundly enmeshed relationships—lubricated by the exchange of money, favors, status, and media attention—shape what gets proposed as policy in the first place. In Clinton World, it’s always win-win-win: The governments look effective, the corporations look righteous, and the celebrities look serious. Oh, and another win too: the Clintons grow ever more powerful. At the center of it all is the canonical belief that change comes not by confronting the wealthy and powerful but by partnering with them. Viewed from within the logic of what Thomas Frank recently termed ‘the land of money,’ all of Hillary Clinton’s most controversial actions make sense. Why not take money from fossil-fuel lobbyists? Why not get paid hundreds of thousands for speeches to Goldman Sachs? It’s not a conflict of interest; it’s a mutually beneficial partnership—part of a never-ending merry-go-round of corporate-political give and take.” (The Nation, 4/6/2016)

In worst for Hillary case RICO statute can be applied but that looks like wishful thinking. the Queen is above the law.  Wall Street analyst uncovers Clinton Foundation fraud

The Bill, Hillary, and Chelsea Clinton Foundation – already under scrutiny for foreign donations – is now being accused of fraudulent and possibly criminal mismanagement.

Over the past six weeks, Wall Street financial analyst and investor Charles Ortel has shared with WND, prior to publication, the results of his six-month, in-depth investigation into what he characterizes as an elaborate scheme devised by the Clintons to enrich themselves.

... ... ...


Ortel’s principal charge is that the Clintons and those running the Clinton Foundation have devised an elaborate scheme to steal from hundreds of thousands of small contributors worldwide, as well as from larger donors, including foreign donors.

He further alleges the Clintons have covered up the alleged fraud by a series of apparently technical violations of federal and state law governing the operation of tax-exempt foundations. Ortel says that even if a sophisticated financial analyst were able to discern the fraud, an explanation of how it was carried out would be beyond the comprehension of the average reader.

Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2015/04/wall-street-analyst-uncovers-clinton-foundation-fraud/#HOj2Oy14Qp6b7yrC.99

Security clearances issues

Hillary Clinton still can lose security clearance, which will be symbolic and pretty humiliating event. and the level of incompetence demonstrated by her makes this a just decition. Probably even the necessary decision in view of the damage she has done. But with the level of protection from Intelligence agencies this is highly unlikely.  Paul Ryan, the House speaker denounced the decision not to prosecute Clinton’s conduct:

“No one should be above the law. But based upon the director’s own statement, it appears damage is being done to the rule of law,” he said.

“Declining to prosecute Secretary Clinton for recklessly mishandling and transmitting national security information will set a terrible precedent. The findings of this investigation also make clear that Secretary Clinton misled the American people when she was confronted with her criminal actions.”

The fallout from the email scandal also clouded the futures of longtime Hillary aides Cheryl Mills, Huma Abedin and Jake Sullivan, who along with Madam Secretary were characterized as "extremely careless". But they got immunity from FBI and nothing  probably with happen with them iether. All will find plush positions in private sector.

The Inside Story on James B. Comey SOTN Alternative News & Commentary

Former FBI Director the Ultimate Inside Man

Posted on by State of the Nation

SOTN Editor’s Note:
The following exposé was originally posted as an excellent comment on Facebook by Lisa Frank.

There is an additional exposé on James Comey which presents an ironclad case against him for dereliction of duty, obstruction of justice and official misconduct as follows:
DETAILING THE COMMISSION OF COMEY CRIMES

State of the Nation
May 18, 2017

... ... ...

Comey was a minor assistant US attorney in the late 90’s. He only gained power and money by being the DOJ official who “investigated” and cleared Bill Clinton of any wrong-doing in Clinton’s totally corrupt pardon (for huge payoffs) of criminal financier Marc Rich as Clinton was leaving the Presidency. This is how Comey began his career as a creature of the “swamp” years ago, as a servant of the Clintons.

Comey provided “cover” for the Clintons in their gaining incredible power and wealth after leaving office through pardoning a billionaire money-launderer, arms dealer and criminal. Comey was a key piece in how the Clintons upped their corruption game and gained incredible wealth through their foundation after leaving the White House. A huge part of the scheme was giving Marc Rich a free pass when he should have spent life in prison, and that is what Comey covered-up for the Clintons. This set up Comey to be part of the corruption machine, making him powerful and wealthy.

Immediately after doing the Clinton’s dirty work as a DOJ official, Comey resigned from the DOJ and took a position as the head attorney (Counsel) of the Lockheed Martin company, a huge military contractor. While he was in that position Lockheed became a major contributor (millions) to the Clinton Foundation and its fake charity spin-offs. In return for these payment to Clinton Inc., Lockheed received huge contracts with Hillary’s state department. Comey was the chief legal officer of Lockheed throughout this period of contributions to Clinton Inc. in return for State Dept. contracts.

In late 2012, after overseeing Lockheed’s successful relationship with the Hillary State Department and the resulting profits, Comey stepped down from Lockheed and received a $6 million dollar payout for his services.

In 2013, the largest bank of England, HSBC Holdings, was deep into a scandal. Investigations by federal authorities and law-enforcement had revealed that for years HSBC had been laundering billions of dollars for Mexican Drug Cartels, channeling money for Saudi banks who were financing terror, moving money for Iran in violation of the sanctions, and other major criminal activity. HSBC’s criminality was pervasive and deliberate by the Bank and its officials. HSBC was a huge Clinton Foundation contributor (many millions) throughout the “investigation” and Bill Clinton was being paid large personal fees for speaking at HSBC events (while Hillary was Sec of State). Eric Holder and the Obama Justice Department did what they were paid to do, and let HSBC off of the hook for a paltry 1.2 Billion dollar fine (paid by its stockholders), and not one Director, officer or management member at HSBC was fired or charged with any criminal. Exactly when everyone involved with HSBC Bank (including the Clintons and all of their “donors”) were being let off without penalty, and cover had to be provided to HSBC, Comey was appointed as a Director and Member of the Board of HSBC (in the middle of the fallout from the scandal). He was part of the effort to cover up the scandal and make HSBC “respectable” again.

After about a year as HSBC director, despite his lack of any law enforcement experience, no DOJ leadership experience, and no qualifications for the job, Comey was appointed FBI director by Obama. The only qualification Comey had was that the Clinton’s and their cronies knew Comey was in bed with them, was compromised and was willing to do their dirty work. Comey was appointed to the FBI right when Hillary was leaving the State Department, and was vulnerable to the FBI because she had been using a private-server, mis-handling classified information, selling access to favors/contracts from the State Department to Clinton Foundation Donors (including Comey’s Lockheed Martin), and much more. Remember that this was about the time the Inspector General of the State Department found over 2 billion “missing” from the State Department finances during Hillary’s tenure.

The obvious conclusion is that Comey was appointed to the FBI (along with other reliable Clinton-Obama cronies) to run interference for the Clinton’s and Obama’s at the nation’s federal law enforcement agency (in conjunction with a corrupt Department of Justice). Comey was and is owned by the Clintons. He owed all of his power and wealth to being part of their machine and providing them with cover.

In late 2015 and early 2016, information began to come out about the Clinton Foundation and its use by the Clinton’s as a multi-billion dollar slush fund for corruption and political favors (even Chelsea’s wedding had been paid for by the “charity). This was right as Hillary was beginning her campaign for President. It was revealed that the Foundation had never completed required reports or had an audit. Supposedly the FBI, under Comey, began an “investigation” of the Clinton Funds. A “professional” accounting firm was brought in by the Clintons to do a review, file some reports, make recommendations to the Clinton Foundation Board, and provide a veneer of legitimacy to the Clinton Fund operations. Predictably, one of the partners in the firm that was chosen (and paid lots of money) is the brother of James Comey (FBI Director). This brother owes James Comey $700,000 for a loan James gave him to buy a house, and presumably some of the money from the Clinton Fund was used to make payments to James on the loan. Over 2 years later and nothing has happened as a result of the FBI “investigating” the Clinton Funds under Comey.

No one in congress or federal law enforcement was intending to actually pursue the Clintons, but Judicial Watch and other independent sources obtained information proving that Hillary had been running her own server, sending out classified information, etc. This information began to come out right in the middle of her campaign to be coronated as President. A “show” investigation had to be performed to appear to look into it and clear her. Who to use?…the reliable shill James Comey.

As head of the FBI, Comey (and his lackeys in key positions) deliberately screwed up the investigation into Hillary’s use of a private server and her plain violation of national security law on classified information. The investigation was deliberately mis-handled in every aspect. Comey gave immunity to all of Hillary’s lackeys, did not use subpoenas or warrants, lost evidence, allowed the destruction of evidence, failed to do any searches or seizures of evidence, did not use a grand-jury, did not swear witnesses, did not record testimony, allowed attorneys to represent multiple suspects (corrupting the testimony). Everything that could be done to ruin the FBI investigation and to cover for Hillary was done. A “slam-dunk” case became a mess. Immunity was given every witness even though they provided no help. Maybe more importantly, by focusing the FBI on the email scandal, attention was drawn away from the much bigger scandal of the Clinton Foundation that could bring down a huge number of corrupt politicians, lobbyists, and even governments.

Originally, Comey’s job was simply to totally botch the Hillary investigation and ruin the case against her and her minions within the FBI regarding he emails. At the same time Comey also started work on a parallel assignment to illegally “wiretap” and surveil Donald Trump and every other person involved in the Republican campaign. He was tasked with digging up any dirt or fact that could be used to hurt the Trump campaign later. This included using a fake “dossier” paid for by the Clinton campaign to obtain authorization for the surveillance and to try to associate Trump’s campaign with the Russians. Under Comey’s direction the Trump/Republican campaign was monitored and surveilled and all information was provided to the Obama Whitehouse and the Clinton camp all during the campaign.

Lorretta Lynch was supposed to complete the coverup for Hillary as Attorney General by issuing a finding that the deliberately botched FBI “investigation” did not justify prosecution of Hillary. But someone screwed up and Bill Clinton was video’d meeting with Loretta Lynch in Arizona shortly before she was supposed to make her decision on Hillary (interference with a federal investigation), and Lynch could no longer credibly squash the Hillary scandal. The solution, give the job to James. The Clinton’s owned him and he would have to do whatever is necessary to provide cover.

Comey goes on national TV and violates every rule of the FBI, the Justice Department and American law enforcement by revealing some of the FBI’s “evidence” of what Hillary did (enough to make it look like the FBI and Comey did some investigation), then declaring that there was no “intent” and clearing Hillary. He did what he was ordered to do. The Justice Department and Obama backed Comey’s coverup and it looked like Hillary had survived the scandal.

Then, right before the election, the NYPD obtained pervert Anthony Wiener’s laptop and found classified emails from Hillary on the laptop. The NYPD began leaking details to new media outlets, and the story was about to explode. Comey once again stepped in to cover Hillary. He short-circuited the NYPD leaks by publicly acknowledging the laptop and the emails, but then claimed just days later that hundreds of thousands of emails had all been reviewed and “nothing new” was on the laptop. Once again, he had done his job. Providing cover and FBI “protection” for Hillary on the newest scandal when it broke.

If Hillary had won, Comey would have kept right on providing cover for the corruption of the Clinton machine. He would have kept the FBI paralyzed, prevented the Clinton Fund from being investigated, and continued to do his job as the Clinton’s personal scandal eraser at the FBI.

BUT TRUMP WON.

The Swamp and its bottom-dwelling denizens realize they are at risk from this political outsider who is not connected to the uni-party machines. Before Trump takes office, a “failsafe” plan is implemented to ruin Trump’s administration and try to force him out of the Presidency. The key players committed to the plan are the Democrat politicians, the RINO establishment, the media, the Obama-Clinton operatives imbedded throughout the intelligence agencies and the entire bureaucracy, and most importantly, the Obama DOJ and JAMES COMEY. The scheme is to smear Trump with Russian “connections,” through a fake FBI “investigation” and more importantly, to trap him into a charge of criminal interference with the FBI. COMEY IS THE CENTRAL FIGURE IN THE SCHEME TO TAKE DOWN TRUMP.

The surveillance of the Trump campaign is continued after he is elected, all participants are “unmasked” illegally, and the transcripts are leaked throughout the government and to the media. When General Flynn appropriately calls Russian officials on behalf of Trump, they brush off the old fake “dossier” and all of the surveillance of the campaign, and Comey creates the “Russian Conspiracy” investigation. With help by RINO swamp kingpin and warmonger sell-out McCain, the fake “Russian pee dossier” is leaked to the press. There is no actual evidence of any collusion or connection between Trump or his campaign with Russia, but that does not prevent Comey from initiating an “investigation” at the FBI. This provides Comey with protection from Trump firing him immediately. Comey (or his minions) constantly leak news of the “Russia Investigation” to the media, and the media does its scripted part by screaming constantly about “Russia”. The Democrats fill their roles and constantly scream about “Russia.” McCain and the RINO establishment do their part by promising to “investigate” how the Russians influenced the campaign.

Immediately after Trump is sworn in, the DOJ Hillary/Obama operatives and Comey start the direct attack. This is before Sessions has been appointed to the Department of Justice and the DOJ is still controlled by Obama operatives. DOJ Obama appointee Sally Yates approaches the White House with news that General Flynn had been in contact with Russia and alleges that he might be compromised. She reveals that there is an FBI “investigation” into the Russia ties (which they are constantly leaking to the media themselves). The White House Counsel (who Yates talks to, not Trump) asks for some more information.

The day before the promised additional information is to be provided by Yates to the Whitehouse, Comey sets up a dinner with Trump. If he can get Trump to ask about Flynn or try to intervene regarding Flynn or Russia, then Trump can be charged with “interfering with an FBI investigation.” MY OPINION IS THAT COMEY SURVEILLED AND “TAPED” THIS MEETING IN HIS ATTEMPT TO SET UP TRUMP.

This is a two-pronged attack. It protects Comey and DOJ Democrat holdovers from being terminated by the new administration because they are involved in an “ongoing investigation” that they control the timetable on (albeit one with absolutely no evidence). If Trump fires Comey then he is “interfering with the investigation” which is itself a federal crime that the FBI could then “investigate.” Alternatively, if they can get Trump to question Comey about Flynn or try to get him to back off of Flynn or the “Russia” investigation, then they again have him “interfering.”

Trump knows it is a set up by Comey and that he is probably being recorded (tips from FBI or DOJ who are not part of the corruption?) Maybe because his phone calls in the White House as President have already been bugged and released to the media (FBI is in the best position to do this). Maybe because he was used to the Mafia in NY trying to shake him down every time he built a hotel. Comey tells Trump that Trump is not under investigation regarding Russia, but that others involved with the campaign are being investigated. Trump does not take the bait and attempt to intervene about Flynn or the Russia scam. Later, Flynn is cut loose because he is being used by Comey and the Obama-holdover Justice to try to damage Trump. He did nothing wrong, but if he stayed, the charge of “interfering with an investigation” might seem to have teeth. Comey verbally tells Trump on two more occasions that he is not being investigated, but refuses to state this fact publicly or when testifying in Congress.

Trump knows everything I have gone through above about Comey. But he has to move carefully. He has to get his Attorney General and Deputy AG in place, get enough leverage on the Russia narrative, and ideally get rid of Comey in a way that allows him to obtain all the information that Comey has been accumulating (if he is taping Trump, he is taping others). Comey, and others testify in Congress. Under oath, both Sally Yates and Intelligence officials from the Obama administration state that there has been no actual evidence of any collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. More importantly, Comey, while refusing to say that Trump is not under investigation, testifies that he has informed the Senate Intelligence Committee heads who exactly is under investigation regarding Russia.

Trump tells almost no one at the White House that he is moving against Comey (so no leaks… no listening in on his conversations). Trump somehow contacts Sen. Grassley (the Chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee) and confirms that Comey told the Senator that Trump was not under investigation personally. Trump gets both the Attorney General and the new Deputy Attorney General to legitimately review Comey’s unprofessional actions at the FBI and to recommend in writing that Trump terminate Comey. Somehow Comey goes to California (at the request of AG Sessions or already scheduled and someone at FBI telling Trump?).

Trump seizes the moment and acts. While Comey is in California, 2300 miles away and 7 hours from his office, Trump prepares a letter firing him (with Sessions and the Deputy AG recommendations attached). In the letter Trump states that he had been told 3 times by Comey that he (Trump) was not under investigation. The letter is hand-delivered to the FBI headquarters by DOJ officials to lock-down and seize everything in Comey’s office, including all surveillance files (“tapes”) of Trump and others. All of Comey’s files, docs, computers and “tapes” are taken to Sessions at DOJ. They are not taken to the White House or Trump, but to Sessions, who has every right to have them. Sessions can tell Trump that Comey had surveillance tapes of Trump that contradict what Comey has been telling Trump, and perhaps tapes of conversations with other swamp “conspirators.” But Trump does not have them personally or at the White House.

Comey learns he has been fired when the media broadcasts it in California. He had no idea it was coming and he is ticked. On cue, the Democrat politicians and media begin screaming about Trump’s “interference with the Russia investigation” in accordance with the plan to set up Trump for that charge. The Swamp wants to blow up the Russia narrative using Comey, and Comey is set to testify before Congress to try to hurt Trump by saying he was interfering with the FBI investigation. Comey intends to follow through with the plan to take down Trump.

But because of his brilliant timing on this, Trump has Comey’s files, documents and information safely with Sessions at DOJ. Trump sends out a “crazy” tweet that says: “James Comey better hope that there are no “tapes” of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press.”

The media and the politicians go crazy about the “inappropriateness” of this tweet. They accuse Trump of “taping” everyone at the White House (forgetting that the President’s phone calls with foreign leaders have been “taped” without his knowledge.)

Notice that Trump did not say he taped anyone, or that he has any tapes at the White House. It seem apparent that Trump is telling Comey that the DOJ (who has every legal right to possess it) has the surveillance information and files from Comey’s office, the “tapes” obtained and kept by Comey. Comey and all the Swamp Creatures understand the clear message… their plan has failed and Trump’s DOJ is now holding all the cards.

The whole Russian interference scheme crashes and burns. While the mouthpiece media, Hollywood and the insane fringe continue to scream about Russia and Comey being fired, the politicians who will soon be in the crosshairs of a legitimate (and ticked) FBI and DOJ are starting to fall strangely silent. Comey realizes all the leverage is with Trump and that he will be lucky if he is not added to the Clinton Death List because of his knowledge (better not take any baths near an electrical outlet or get on any airplanes).

Comey tells Congress he will not testify and writes a public letter to the FBI accepting his firing and telling them he does not want to discuss why or how he was terminated. Senator Grassley and Senator Feinstein (she must be covering her butt in fear …) issue public statements confirming that Comey told them that the “Russia Investigation” does not involve President Trump personally.

AG Sessions and his Deputy AG use the Comey trove of information to determine who has been part of the Comey Syndicate at the FBI. They will be appointing an “interim” Director of the FBI shortly who has not been compromised by Comey, Clinton or Obama. That “interim” Director does not have to be approved by Congress or anyone, and can immediately begin cleaning house at the FBI of all Comey/Clinton/Obama minions, initiating investigations of the Clintons, Clinton Fund, violations of intelligence confidentiality laws by Susan Rice and Obama, human trafficking in DC, political corruption… draining the Swamp.

Using the Comey files they can be fairly certain they are not getting another Comey as an “interim”, and they do not have to wait for the circus of appointing a new permanent “Director” through Congressional approval. Most of the heavy lifting on rooting out FBI corruption and starting investigations into the swamp will be done by the “interim” before a new director is appointed. I suspect the Trump administration hopes the approval FBI Director process will be slow and tedious, so there is no political interference with the housecleaning that is starting.

In one masterstroke, Trump has eliminated a truly toxic and dangerous enemy to his administration and our country, dealt a horrendous blow to the Clinton/Obama camp and Deep State machines, begun the restoration of the integrity of the FBI and the DOJ, and gained incredible ammunition to begin hunting the foul creatures in the swamp.

— Lisa Frank

Happy Hunting, President Trump… and God Bless!

 


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Old News ;-)

[Jan 22, 2018] Comey to teach ethical leadership course at William Mary

Jan 22, 2018 | thehill.com

Former FBI Director James Comey has landed a teaching gig at his alma mater, the College of William & Mary, and will join the ranks of the school's teaching faculty this fall with a course on ethical leadership.

The Washington Post reports that Comey has accepted a nontenured position as an executive professor in education with the school, and will teach the course on ethical leadership in fall 2018, spring 2019 and summer 2019 semesters.

[Jan 22, 2018] https://hotair.com/archives/2018/01/21/text-messages-peter-strzok-lisa-page/

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... But, according to the letter, the FBI told the department that its system for retaining text messages sent and received on bureau phones had failed to preserve communications between Strzok and Page over a five-month period between Dec. 14, 2016, and May 7, 2017. The explanation for the gap was "misconfiguration issues related to rollouts, provisioning, and software upgrades that conflicted with the FBI's collection capabilities." ..."
"... Technical glitches obviously do happen but I can't help getting a bit of a Lois Lerner flashback upon hearing that five months of messages are missing from the time right after Trump was elected until 10 days before Robert Mueller was appointed as Special Counsel. So if you were hoping for any follow up on that comment about an insurance policy, it looks like you can forget it. That's a well-timed glitch. ..."
"... But it seems the DOJ did turn over some additional texts that are worth considering. One involves an early draft of the Comey memo clearing Hillary Clinton. Originally the draft pointed out that Clinton had exchanged emails with President Obama while she was "on the territory" of a hostile power. Eventually, Obama's name was scrubbed from the document and finally all reference to the incident was removed. So that's one more example of the statement being watered down over time. And finally there is this : ..."
"... In another exchange, the two express displeasure about the timing of Lynch's announcement that she would defer to the FBI's judgment on the Clinton investigation. That announcement came days after it was revealed that the attorney general and former President Bill Clinton had an impromptu meeting aboard her plane in Phoenix, though both sides said the email investigation was never discussed ..."
"... Strzok said in a July 1 text message that the timing of Lynch's announcement "looks like hell." And Page appears to mockingly refer to Lynch's decision to accept the FBI's conclusion in the case as a "real profile in courag(e) since she knows no charges will be brought ..."
"... Comey himself had suggested Lynch appeared biased in the email probe and that he felt the need to act independently from her. ..."
"... "And she said, 'Yes, but don't call it that, call it a matter,'" Mr. Comey continued. "And I said, 'Why would I do that?' And she said, 'Just call it a matter.'" ..."
"... Mr. Comey said the "conclusive" episode that persuaded him to make his own announcement in the Clinton investigation rather than leave it to Ms. Lynch came last June, when former President Bill Clinton spontaneously boarded her plane on a tarmac and sat down to talk with her. ..."
"... So the story was that Lynch was biased (she was) but that Comey acted to protect the independence of the investigation. In fact, Lynch knew what Comey was going to say days before he said it. ..."
Jan 22, 2018 | hotair.com

The Associated Press is reporting that the Department of Justice has given congressional investigators additional text messages between FBI investigator Peter Strzok and his girlfriend Lisa Page. The FBI also told investigators that five months worth of text messages, between December 2016 and May 2017, are unavailable because of a technical glitch .

... ... ...

[Jan 05, 2018] DOJ Will Not File Charges Against Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

Blast from the past. Now we know why Coney behaved this way and who was instrumental in exonerating Hillary. They wanted to derail both sanders and Trump.
Notable quotes:
"... Comey called her "extremely careless." That was highly charitable. But even by that standard, Hillary was grossly negligent with classified material. Comey says Hillary had no intent to transmit information to foreign powers. But that's not what the statute requires. ..."
"... The FBI said in their statement that they found documents classified as Secret and Top Secret on her personal server. ..."
"... That means she gets off if the Defense lawyer can convince the Jury it's reasonable to believe a sixty-something policy wonk had no fucking clue that a server in her basement was less secure then a government email account because she was not consciously choosing to be less secure. ..."
"... So in this case the FBI chose not to charge her for something we all know she did and is a clear violation of the law as written. ..."
"... Lack of legitimacy hasn't hampered her at all. The same goes for lack of morality, lack of patriotism, lack of decency, lack of conscience. Really at this point we need 7 dwarfs and a prince to rid us of her. ..."
"... More than 2,000 of the 30,490 emails Clinton turned over to the State Department in December 2014 contained classified information, including 110 emails in 52 email chains that contained classified information at the time they were sent or received , Comey said. ..."
"... For Hillary the 110 emails have all been verified by the owning agency that the information was classified at the time Hillary included it in her emails. Thus felonies, except that she is a Clinton and is thus exempt from the laws we peons are subject to. ..."
"... She moved, or caused to be moved, classified material off of a secure system onto an un-secure system. It would still be a felony if she had simply moved one of the 110 found documents to a thumb drive! The FBI basically said she broke the law 110 times and we are recommending to not prosecute! ..."
"... "the FBI itself, less than a year ago, charged one Bryan H. Nishimura, 50, of Folsom, who pleaded guilty to "unauthorized removal and retention of classified materials" without malicious intent, in other words precisely what the FBI alleges Hillary did" http://theantimedia.org/this-m... [theantimedia.org] ..."
"... What she did was illegal, and what she did should disqualify her from having a clearance. Far less connected people have done much the same and gotten 2 years probation and $7500 fine. Petraeus did much the same and got 2 years probation and $100,000 fine. There is plenty of evidence of her breaking the law. The problem is that no one will prosecute it because Hillary is rich enough to afford lawyers that could get her off, and it would just make it look political. ..."
"... She flatly violated a statute that only requires gross negligence (aka, "extreme carelessness"), but Comey dodged and said he wouldn't recommend prosecution because he could not prove intent - even though intent is not required by the statute. ..."
"... But the key point is that under the Espionage act (18 USC 793) you don't get to be careless with national secrets. You request a clearance you promise to not be careless under punishment of Law. ..."
"... She instructed her staff to "remove markings and send non-secure." Her defense was "they weren't -marked- classified when I sent them." ..."
"... I would say that her instruction "send non-secure" makes it pretty clear she knew it isn't secure, and was actively thinking of that fact when she told them to do it. At the same time, she was also setting her up defense, having them (illegally?) remove the classification markings so that she could later testify "they weren't marked classified when I forwarded them." Sounds like she knew it was illegal. ..."
"... That's pretty darn specific. If it was just the confidential stuff, I think your implication that the government classifies everything and this isn't a big deal would be very strong. Multiple accidental Top Secret information leaks is a bit different, though. In the last 15 years, we have sent many government workers to jail for leaking information like this, or even just having it stored at their house. [washingtonpost.com] ..."
"... Posting as AC for obvious reasons. If I had done anything remotely like what Hillary did when I was in the intelligence community, I would have gone to jail and never ever seen daylight again. But then again, I wasn't one of the "elite" and laws actually applied to me. ..."
"... In January 2015, officials reported the FBI and Justice Department prosecutors had recommended bringing felony charges against Petraeus for allegedly providing classified information to his biographer, Paula Broadwell (with whom he was having an affair), while serving as the director of the CIA Eventually, Petraeus pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor charge of mishandling classified information... On April 23, 2015, a federal judge sentenced Petraeus to two years' probation plus a fine of $100,000. The fine was more than double the amount the Justice Department had requested. ..."
"... You are correct: what he confirmed was that Clinton lied under oath to Congress, not to the FBI. (He also confirmed that she lied to the American people.) ..."
"... She couldn't have lied under oath to the FBI because she wasn't put under oath, and her interviews were neither recorded nor transcripts prepared, which really makes the whole investigation a farce. ..."
"... Comey will now be tasked with a formal investigation of her lying to Congress. If we're lucky, they'll still get her. ..."
"... I think Clinton is unsuitable for the job of president because she is dishonest, corrupt, and, above all, incompetent. ..."
"... Are you living under a rock? Her private E-mail server, the hundreds of millions of dollars of donations to the Clinton Foundation while she was in office, her nepotism, her speaking fees, her corporate cronyism, her lies about her stance on gay marriage, and her revisionist AIDS history alone ought to be enough to consider her profoundly dishonest, corrupt, and incompetent, and we haven't even gotten to the real political stuff that the Republicans always harp on about. Really, what kind of gullible fool are you? ..."
Jul 07, 2016 | politics.slashdot.org

acoustix ( 123925 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @09:38AM ( #52462645 ) Homepage

Re: Yawn ( Score: 5 , Informative)

18 USC 793.

This statute explicitly states that whoever, "entrusted with or having lawful possession or control of any document through gross negligence permits the same to removed from its proper place of custody or having knowledge that the same has been illegally removed from its proper place of custody.shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both."

Comey called her "extremely careless." That was highly charitable. But even by that standard, Hillary was grossly negligent with classified material. Comey says Hillary had no intent to transmit information to foreign powers. But that's not what the statute requires.

18 USC 1924.

This statute states that any employee of the United States who "knowingly removes [classified] documents or materials without authority and with the intent to retain such documents or materials at an unauthorized location shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for not more than one year, or both." Hillary set up a private server explicitly to do this.

18 USC 798.

This statute states that anyone who "uses in any manner prejudicial to the safety or interest of the United Statesany classified informationshall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both." Hillary transmitted classified information in a manner that harmed the United States; Comey says she may have been hacked.

18 USC 2071.

This statute says that anyone who has custody of classified material and "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." Clearly, Hillary meant to remove classified materials from government control.

Anonymous Coward writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @09:28PM ( #52467767 )
The FBI said in their statement that they found documents classified as Secret and Top Secret on her personal server.
NicBenjamin ( 2124018 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @05:12PM ( #52466115 )
Re: Yawn ( Score: 2 )
A clear-case of hate-reading. Which always gets more complicated when you add in legal English. Especially since we're talking about a defendant in a criminal case, and there's this "Reasonable Doubt" thing that means you can get off even if the Jury is pretty sure you did it. To counter your specific points:

18 USC 793:

"Gross negligence" is an extremely specific legal term. The definition [wikipedia.org] starts with extreme carelessness, but specifies that the carelessness must "shows a conscious and voluntary disregard of the need to use reasonable care, and likely to cause foreseeable grave injury or harm." Note all that shit about what's going on in the defendants head ("conscious and voluntary")?

That means she gets off if the Defense lawyer can convince the Jury it's reasonable to believe a sixty-something policy wonk had no fucking clue that a server in her basement was less secure then a government email account because she was not consciously choosing to be less secure.

18 USC 1924:

Good luck proving that beyond a reasonable doubt. She swore up and down she had no classified info on the server. Which means to prove that interesting "knowingly" word you have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that she was lying when she said that.

Moreover there's an equally interesting "without authority" clause. She's an OCA, and if her President gets called to the stand and asked "do you think she did something wrong?" he will say no. Moreover the fact that previous Secretaries did it without being charged, and that John Kerry felt he had to explicitly ban the practice of keeping info on your own server, strongly implies that it was authorized at the time.

18 USC 798:

Don't be ridiculous. You're seriously arguing that the Secretary of State, who serves at the pleasure of the person who defines the national interest of the United States, emailing some foreign leader or another is "using classified info to harm the United States?" Don't get me wrong I'm sure that in literal terms many cabinet officers have been fuck-ups who were hurting the country (looking at you Rummy), but that's not illegal.

18 USC 2071:

You see that pronoun "same?" The antecedent is "any record, proceeding, map, book, paper, document, or other thing, filed or deposited with any clerk or officer of any court of the United States, or in any public office, or with any judicial or public officer of the United States." The whole problem is that she failed to keep her emails in a governmental system, not that she went into some US Clerk's office, ransacked the files for her emails, and then ran away laughing evilly.

Anonymous Coward writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @09:28AM ( #52462567 )
Re: Yawn ( Score: 2 , Informative)

Comey didn't say that she leaked anything. He said that she didn't properly safeguard classified information.

However, there was no intent to leak information, nor is there evidence that anything was leaked. Comey searched high and low for a precedent which would allow him to bring charges, and he concluded that if he indicted Clinton, he would probably have to indict a significant portion of the federal bureaucracy.

Hard to bring criminal charges for utilizing a bad process. "Should have known better" isn't a criminal offense.

Actually, you are wrong, it is a criminal offense. Anyone given classified information is briefed on the proper use and handling of said classified information. The law, under 18 USC 793 subsection (f) actually states that any form of information that through gross negligence is removed from it's proper place of custody is subject to criminal fines or up to 10 years in prison.

https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/793

Information that the Secretary of State has that she transmits to her subordinates on an unsecured email server does meet the requirement of "gross negligence".

So in this case the FBI chose not to charge her for something we all know she did and is a clear violation of the law as written.

Bruce66423 ( 1678196 ) writes: on Wednesday July 06, 2016 @07:02PM ( #52459451 )
Sanders has an option ( Score: 5 , Interesting)

He asks the convention to vote that it is unwilling to select a person who has been shown to be 'careless about protecting government secrets' etc etc.

The delegates would be free to pass such a motion, despite being bound to vote for Hilary when the actual roll call occurs. If a large number of her delegates support the critical motion, her legitimacy is gone.

Here's hoping.

Crashmarik ( 635988 ) writes: on Wednesday July 06, 2016 @07:15PM ( #52459523 )
Hillary concerned about legitimacy ? ( Score: 4 , Funny)

Lack of legitimacy hasn't hampered her at all. The same goes for lack of morality, lack of patriotism, lack of decency, lack of conscience. Really at this point we need 7 dwarfs and a prince to rid us of her.

Anonymous Coward writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @06:36AM ( #52461905 )
Re: Sanders has an option ( Score: 1 )

Citation: https://oig.state.gov/system/files/esp-16-03.pdf

Sounds like it's more than a couple dozen to me.

Page 21: Secretary Powell did not employ a Department email account, even after OpenNet's introduction. He has publicly written: "To complement the official State Department computer in my office, I installed a laptop computer on a private line. My personal email account on the laptop allowed me direct access to anyone online. I started shooting emails to my principal assistants, to individual ambassadors, and increasingly to my foreign -minister colleagues...."

NicBenjamin ( 2124018 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @06:20PM ( #52466545 )

Re: Sanders has an option ( Score: 2 )

Much of the Bush White House used email addresses on Bush's private gwb43.com [wikipedia.org] server. This was originally set up by Rove and Dubya to coordinate the perfectly legal (and thus, by definition, legitimate) firing of eight Prosecutors who went after corrupt Republicans, and was designed to be FOIA and Records request immune. It auto-deleted all emails after a period of time.

While it's hard to find direct evidence of the server Powell used, he has admitted [politico.com] that a) he used a private address and b) he has no copies of the emails. He claims he never used it to discuss classified info, but that's more then a wee bit unlikely as much info is considered classified by somebody, and it's impossible to verify because all of them are gone. Nonetheless nonetheless [cnn.com] he did have some classified info sent to his email address. Many of the Hillary emails that were declared Classified after the fact would be impossible to find for Powell or Rice because they were discussions with people who did not have state.gov email addresses because at the time the whole state.gov email system was just being set up.

Anonymous Coward writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @07:05AM ( #52461955 )

Re: Sanders has an option ( Score: 1 )

Wrong

https://oig.state.gov/system/files/esp-16-03.pdf

"At a minimum, Secretary Powell should have surrendered all emails sent from or received in his personal account that related to Department business. Because he did not do so at the time that he departed government service or at any time thereafter, Secretary Powell did not comply with Department policies that were implemented in accordance with the Federal Records Act. In an attempt to address this deficiency, NARA requested that the Department inquire with Secretary Powell's "internet service or email provider" to determine whether it is still possible to retrieve the email records that might remain on its servers.

The Under Secretary for Management subsequently informed NARA that the Department sent a letter to Secretary Powell's representative conveying this request. As of May 2016, the Department had not received a response from Secretary Powell or his representative."

Anonymous Coward writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @02:10PM ( #52464787 )

Re: Sanders has an option ( Score: 1 )

A lot of people did the same thing and Colin Powell was one of them.

No. There's a difference here. From FBI director Comey and the State Department:

More than 2,000 of the 30,490 emails Clinton turned over to the State Department in December 2014 contained classified information, including 110 emails in 52 email chains that contained classified information at the time they were sent or received , Comey said.

The State Department inquiry identified 10 messages sent to Rice's immediate staff that were classified and two sent to Powell, according to Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland, the ranking member on the House Oversight and Benghazi committees.

The emails, Cummings said, appear to have no classification markings, and it is still unclear if the content of the emails was or should have been considered classified when the emails were originally written and sent.

It appears that Clinton sent / received over 100 Emails clearly marked "secret" in some form or another; Powell had 2 Emails retroactively classified. Seems like a very narrow distinction, but it's not. Clinton handled 110 messages (those that were found) that were unambiguously marked as classified, Powell did not.

dwillden ( 521345 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @05:01AM ( #52461735 ) Homepage
Re:Sanders has an option ( Score: 2 )

The external mail server is not the real problem. Her holding on to the email long after she was supposed to have turned it over is a minor problem. The 110 Classified emails (those containing information that was classified at the time that she sent the email) is the problem. Each of those emails is a felony. You don't put classified information on an unclassified network. Regardless of where the server is hosted from.

A review of Colin Powell's email which was turned over as required upon his departure from the office, (rather than two years later) found two emails that contained information the State Dept classified after he sent the information. That is not a crime. It was unclassified when he sent the information. He reviewed the two emails and disagrees that it should have been classified. And as the top Original Classifying Authority (an individual authorized to determine if information needs to be classified and at what level) for all of the Dept. of State during his tenure it is his call.

For Sec Rice they found about a dozen emails classified after the fact on her email that was also turned over when required. Again classified after the fact, so not a crime.

For Hillary the 110 emails have all been verified by the owning agency that the information was classified at the time Hillary included it in her emails. Thus felonies, except that she is a Clinton and is thus exempt from the laws we peons are subject to.

Colin Powell did NOT do the same thing.

cmiller173 ( 641510 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @09:56AM ( #52462747 )
Re:Sign the petittion... ( Score: 2 )

Are you seriously trying to make this about a FOIA compliance issue? This has nothing to do with FOIA. She moved, or caused to be moved, classified material off of a secure system onto an un-secure system. It would still be a felony if she had simply moved one of the 110 found documents to a thumb drive! The FBI basically said she broke the law 110 times and we are recommending to not prosecute!

Powell did not have a private server, and while he did have a personal address there is no evidence that any material that was classified at the time was ever sent to/from it. Politifact rates Clinton's statement that her predecessors did it as "Mostly false"

"the FBI itself, less than a year ago, charged one Bryan H. Nishimura, 50, of Folsom, who pleaded guilty to "unauthorized removal and retention of classified materials" without malicious intent, in other words precisely what the FBI alleges Hillary did" http://theantimedia.org/this-m... [theantimedia.org]

The Government Has Prosecuted Nearly Every Violator of Secrecy Rules Before Hillary Clinton. The Obama administration has filed more charges against those who leak classified information than all previous presidential administrations combined, according to a statement made by CNN's Jake Tapper that was marked "True" by Politifact. http://usuncut.com/politics/cl... [usuncut.com]

Coren22 ( 1625475 ) writes: on Friday July 08, 2016 @04:47PM ( #52474221 )

Journal http://www.politifact.com/trut... [politifact.com]

Re:I would daresay... ( Score: 2 )

What she did was illegal, and what she did should disqualify her from having a clearance. Far less connected people have done much the same and gotten 2 years probation and $7500 fine. Petraeus did much the same and got 2 years probation and $100,000 fine. There is plenty of evidence of her breaking the law. The problem is that no one will prosecute it because Hillary is rich enough to afford lawyers that could get her off, and it would just make it look political.

hsthompson69 ( 1674722 ) writes: on Wednesday July 06, 2016 @08:39PM ( #52460001 )

Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 5 , Informative)

18 U.S. Code 793 (f)

https://www.law.cornell.edu/us... [cornell.edu]

(f) Whoever, being entrusted with or having lawful possession or control of any document, writing, code book, signal book, sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, instrument, appliance, note, or information, relating to the national defense, (1) through gross negligence permits the same to be removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of his trust, or to be lost, stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, or (2) having knowledge that the same has been illegally removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of its trust, or lost, or stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, and fails to make prompt report of such loss, theft, abstraction, or destruction to his superior officer-
Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.

She flatly violated a statute that only requires gross negligence (aka, "extreme carelessness"), but Comey dodged and said he wouldn't recommend prosecution because he could not prove intent - even though intent is not required by the statute.

Now, you can argue 18 U.S. Code 793 (a), which requires intent, could not be prosecuted, but 18 U.S. Code 793 (f) clearly was violated.

Hillary is a criminal who the FBI declined to recommend prosecution for.

dwillden ( 521345 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @06:09AM ( #52461847 )

Homepage

Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 2 )

Handling classified information requires diligence. You don't get to be careless with it. Intent is not required because you promise to not be careless with it.

Cederic ( 9623 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @10:35AM ( #52463037 )
Journal 30k emails? About 10 months volume for me.

Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 2 )

If I allowed through omission, inattention, disregard for process or simple stupidity broke my employer's sensitive data policies ten times a month I'd have made it around three days before being sacked.

110 is nothing

Please tell me you don't work in IT.

hsthompson69 ( 1674722 ) writes: on Wednesday July 06, 2016 @10:20PM ( #52460475 )

Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 2 )

through gross negligence permits the same to be removed from its proper place of custody

Comey proved that. She was extremely careless (gross negligence), and she removed classified data from its proper place of custody (secure networks) and placed it on her private server.

This is beyond a reasonable doubt.

If you assert that Hillary actually ordered the building of a private server, then she's actually guilty of more - that proves intent :)

Sarten-X ( 1102295 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @12:01AM ( #52460869 ) Homepage

Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 2 )

The words "extremely careless" were chosen carefully to avoid saying "negligent". To be careless is to be ignorant of the required security procedures, while to be ignorant is to know what's proper and required, and choosing to not attempt to follow it. If you're going to go down that road, you'll need to establish that the sysadmins responsible for that server were aware of the that the system could hold classified information, and they knew the security requirements necessary to protect a system holding classified information, and chose willingly to leave it unsecured.

There are an awful lot of bad things here... certainly enough to say the handling was careless. Unfortunately, without an absolutely solid case for a particular and completely-provable allegation, a successful prosecution is extremely unlikely, and would not serve the cause of justice in any meaningful way.

dwillden ( 521345 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @06:27AM ( #52461887 )

Homepage

Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 2 )

This is not about what the sys-admins knew. The server was not on a classified network. It should never have had any classified on it.

You don't get to be careless with classified information.
The information was on her account that she held the password for. That means she put it on there, or is responsible for giving an aid her password to put the information on the account. She is only responsible for information she sends, something someone else sends to her would not be of interest but would result in charges against the other person. Where are those individuals?

This is about classified information put into emails sent from her personal account on her private server. That means she is responsible, and carelessness is not a valid excuse.

The Server was not intended to hold classified information, it was on the internet, not one of the physically separate classified networks.

But the key point is that under the Espionage act (18 USC 793) you don't get to be careless with national secrets. You request a clearance you promise to not be careless under punishment of Law.

mrchaotica ( 681592 ) * writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @07:25AM ( #52461997 )

Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 2 )

To be careless is to be ignorant of the required security procedures

SHE WAS TRAINED IN THE REQUIRED SECURITY PROCEDURES!

Sarten-X ( 1102295 ) writes: on Wednesday July 06, 2016 @11:57PM ( #52460841 ) Homepage

Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 2 )

That email about the fax proves only that a particular message was requested to be transmitted in an insecure manner. That does not mean the contents of the fax were sensitive or that removing the markings was improper. As I understand, the subject of the fax was a set of talking points for a speech, which were sensitive only in that they were not yet publicly released. If there was indeed a classified piece of information in the fax, it could have been sanitized prior to the insecure transmission. Without seeing the classified version, it is impossible to tell.

It's not "moving the goal post" to point out that your kick fell far short. Again, consider that a prosecution would be arguing before a court of law. Nothing is obvious, and nothing is beyond question. If you want to prove something, you have to show your entire case.

dwillden ( 521345 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @06:29AM ( #52461891 ) Homepage
Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 2 )

You don't just remove markings. The only exception to this is if the markings were all (U) Unclassified. Then and only then can they be removed without going through a formal declassification process.

Sarten-X ( 1102295 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @10:20PM ( #52468021 )

Homepage

Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 2 )

Actually, yes, you can usually just remove markings from (or more precisely, rewrite without markings) unclassified material that's on a secure system. The unclassified material doesn't need to be "declassified" because it was never classified to begin with. That includes unclassified parts of a larger document that's marked as containing classified information, and by the same extension it applies to unclassified data on computer systems that are marked as containing classified data.

What's important is that no classified information actually gets out of the secure environment. Nobody cares about other information, with a few exceptions.

h4ck7h3p14n37 ( 926070 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @10:30AM ( #52462993 )
Homepage

Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 2 )

How about that thumb drive of emails that she turned over to her attorney?

hsthompson69 ( 1674722 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @02:14AM ( #52461219 )

Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 2 )

"extreme carelessness" == "gross negligence"

They're literally synonyms in legal dictionaries.

dwillden ( 521345 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @07:26AM ( #52462011 ) Homepage

Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 2 )

They are equal as that is the description found in the relevant statute. You don't get to be careless with classified information. Being careless with classified information is Gross Negligence. This is because mishandled national secrets can cost lives.

Proving Gross negligence is easy. Did classified information get manually transcribed onto the unclassified system? (there is no software link between the various classified networks and machines and an unclassified network or machine) Yes it did. Was the intent to transfer to unauthorized persons to cause harm to the US? No, therefore we have Gross negligence.

raymorris ( 2726007 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @11:22AM ( #52463387 ) Journal
"Remove markings and send non-secure" ( Score: 2 )

She instructed her staff to "remove markings and send non-secure." Her defense was "they weren't -marked- classified when I sent them."

I would say that her instruction "send non-secure" makes it pretty clear she knew it isn't secure, and was actively thinking of that fact when she told them to do it. At the same time, she was also setting her up defense, having them (illegally?) remove the classification markings so that she could later testify "they weren't marked classified when I forwarded them." Sounds like she knew it was illegal.

hsthompson69 ( 1674722 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @08:38PM ( #52467483 )
Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 2 )

She consciously refused a state.gov email account.

She voluntarily setup a private email server.

Even a technologically illiterate grandma, when told by her sysadmins at the state department that what she was doing was wrong, makes is clear that it was likely to cause foreseeable harm.

tl;dr - a technophobic grandma doesn't know enough to ask for a private server, she just takes the state department blackberry and lives with whatever email it's configured with.

P. I. Staker ( 3958187 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @11:02AM ( #52463239 )
Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 1 )

I'm sure this is going to sound stupid, but I'm not sure it's appropriate to prosecute, even when the letter of the law has been definitively broken. Obviously, this is how it should work, but in many cases laws regarding handling of protected information are prosecuted with extreme discretion. In other words, charges are often not brought unless there is intent and/or aggravating factors, even when the law has clearly been broken as written.

Really we need someone with substantial legal experience in this specific area to comment (I won't hold my breath for that). Despite the fact that the above code is fairly straight forward, I don't feel qualified to assess the FBI's conclusion: "Although there is evidence of potential violations regarding the handling of classified information, our judgment is that no reasonable prosecutor would bring such a case," (James Comey).

I'm not addressing whether or not it makes sense to use discretion in these cases. Personally, I don't think it's appropriate and sets a double standard; it's not like someone selling drugs will not get prosecuted because there was no intent to cause addiction.

That said, I don't make the rules, and I really don't think most people in this forum are qualified to judge whether she is getting preferential treatment by applying the letter of the law, combined with the way that other laws are prosecuted (and the way laws should be prosecuted). The reality is that, right or wrong, this is not how laws regarding handling of sensitive information are applied. For the record, I despise Hillary & the Clintons and will not vote for her, even though the alternative is at least as terrible.

hsthompson69 ( 1674722 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @08:42PM ( #52467511 )
Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 2 )

I understand discretion - but if anything, we should hold our government leaders to a higher level of accountability.

Letting Johnny get off with a warning after his first shoplifting attempt, or sending Judy on her way after she's caught speeding with a warning, is discretion.

But if Johnny is a Congressman, or Judy is the president's daughter, you simply cannot afford to let them off the hook without damaging the perception of fairness. When the rich and powerful get away with something that we regularly impose upon the poor and weak, even if occasionally we let the poor and weak get by with just a warning, we destroy the sense of justice in the community.

dwillden ( 521345 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @06:09AM ( #52461843 ) Homepage

Re:FBI director announced she IS guilty, won't pro ( Score: 2 )

No the crime is to mishandle or fail to protect classified information. To do so is to be grossly negligent. It does not require intent, it does not require the act to be willful. Carelessness with classified information is Gross Negligence and is a felony.

Carelessness or willful, both are Gross negligence. Putting classified information into a vulnerable position is Gross Negligence. When you are granted a Clearance and access, you sign what is basically a Non-disclosure agreement where you acknowledge that if you have any role in the release or mishandling of classified information you are punishable under the law. She put 110 emails containing classified information onto an unclassified network. Considering the handling and marking processes of working with classified information, to describe her actions as careless is false, but that opinion aside, you don't get to be careless with classified information. Being careless with classified information gets people killed and is illegal.

Anonymous Coward writes: on Wednesday July 06, 2016 @07:33PM ( #52459649 )

Wrong ( Score: 3 , Informative)

He said Clinton and her staff sent 110 emails in 52 chains containing information that was classified at the time. Eight of those emails carried top secret information , eight contained classified information and 36 had secret info.

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/no-charges-clinton-emails-fbi-director-article-1.2699441

Goldsmith ( 561202 ) writes: on Wednesday July 06, 2016 @09:11PM ( #52460137 )

Re:No justice ( Score: 3 )

I don't think that's what the FBI statement is saying at all, and I think you're looking at something that's not the statement...

It's very clear that the FBI found that classified information was exposed, but not "in such a way as to support an inference of intentional misconduct; or indications of disloyalty to the United States; or efforts to obstruct justice." The FBI characterization of what was done is "extremely careless." This is interesting wording because that is not a legal term associated with disclosure of classified material; "grossly negligent" is the legal term associated with the threshold for felony mishandling of classified information.

The FBI statement is also very clear on the security classification of what they found, which is why I think you're reading something else.

110 e-mails in 52 e-mail 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 chains contained Secret information at the time; and eight contained Confidential information, which is the lowest level of classification.

That's pretty darn specific. If it was just the confidential stuff, I think your implication that the government classifies everything and this isn't a big deal would be very strong. Multiple accidental Top Secret information leaks is a bit different, though. In the last 15 years, we have sent many government workers to jail for leaking information like this, or even just having it stored at their house. [washingtonpost.com]

dwillden ( 521345 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @07:43AM ( #52462061 ) Homepage
Re:No justice ( Score: 2 )

It was on an unclassified server on the internet. It was exposed. It doesn't matter if anyone found it or not. It was exposed.

As to classified information there is Classified information marked Confidential, Secret and Top Secret (with additional caveats and Special access designations). That is classified information. That is what was found on her emails. It is all marked very clearly as to it's classification level. How is it marked? At the top and bottom of every page, the highest level of information on the page is marked. At the beginning of every paragraph it is marked. And on the first and last page of the document the overall (highest) level of classification is marked as well as who classified it and instructions as to when it is to be declassified. There is also sensitive but unclassified information that, unless on a classified system will most likely not be well marked. That is not what was found 110 emails containing classified information were found 8 instances had TOP SECRET info.

The Classification system for truly Classified information is not vague, it is clear, it is concise. There are specific and strict rules for marking it as such, and for handling it. That such information ended up on her private unclassified server exposes the information. Just being put onto an unclassified storage medium is a criminal act. It does not require intent, it does not require someone without authorization to access it. That the information was in her emails on the unclassified server on the internet is sufficient to meet the grounds for the Gross Negligence standard of 18, 793(f).

Anonymous Coward writes: on Wednesday July 06, 2016 @07:36PM ( #52459661 )
Re:No justice ( Score: 1 )

Posting as AC for obvious reasons. If I had done anything remotely like what Hillary did when I was in the intelligence community, I would have gone to jail and never ever seen daylight again. But then again, I wasn't one of the "elite" and laws actually applied to me.

argumentsockpuppet ( 4374943 ) writes: on Wednesday July 06, 2016 @09:56PM ( #52460371 )

Re:No justice ( Score: 2 , Insightful)

I support the NSA and I also support Snowden. Snowden did a brave and terrifying thing that needed to happen, that needed to be done, knowing the consequences he faced. The NSA is a good organization with many good people doing what they need to do with love for their countrymen in their hearts and honor in their actions. Some people in the NSA made bad, perhaps even evil decisions. Sometimes bad people get put in positions they shouldn't be, and sometimes people with power, even good people, make decisions that are bad.

Supporting the NSA doesn't mean I support all the decisions or people that are a part of it. I believe the NSA did some bad things, but that doesn't mean I think the organization is bad or comprised of bad people.

What Snowden did may have been illegal, but it was a choice to do what he believed was right. For what it's worth I believe it was right too. I think it is a terrible thing to have to choose between following the law and doing what is right when the two are mutually exclusive.

The US justice system was designed intentionally to have people determine not only whether the law was followed, but also whether the law should apply. Snowden should be able to face a court of his peers and plead his case and that jury should be able to make a judgement not based on the law, but on whether what he did was wrong or right. It disturbs and saddens me to realize I don't trust that he could receive such a fair trial.

hwstar ( 35834 ) writes: on Wednesday July 06, 2016 @09:25PM ( #52460195 )
We could always bring back Star Chambers ( Score: 2 )

From: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Star_Chamber

The Star Chamber was established to ensure the fair enforcement of laws against socially and politically prominent people so powerful that ordinary courts would likely hesitate to convict them of their crimes.

The constitution would need to be modified, however.

GPS Pilot ( 3683 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @08:27PM ( #52467409 )
You've not heard of the Petraeus case? ( Score: 2 )

The only times I've ever heard of an actual prosecution for mishandling has been when the person was suspected of actual spying, or in Manning's case, whistleblowing

I'm surprised that you've not heard of the David Petraeus case.

In January 2015, officials reported the FBI and Justice Department prosecutors had recommended bringing felony charges against Petraeus for allegedly providing classified information to his biographer, Paula Broadwell (with whom he was having an affair), while serving as the director of the CIA Eventually, Petraeus pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor charge of mishandling classified information... On April 23, 2015, a federal judge sentenced Petraeus to two years' probation plus a fine of $100,000. The fine was more than double the amount the Justice Department had requested.

cold fjord ( 826450 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @01:04AM ( #52461069 )

Re:I wonder if they'll cancel Petraeus's sentence ( Score: 1 )

Petraeus's mistress was an Army Reserve intelligence officer with Top Secret clearance and had served in the war zone. She used the information (much of which was Petraeus's notes/notbooks IIRC) to write his biography. I don't recall there being any allegation of the information going further than that. (It was still wrong.)

As to intent - Hillary Clintons servers were created and operated by her order. Messages were bulk erased by her order. Her intent of avoiding scrutiny is clear.

Where do you think Sid got the classified information? Why would he have it as an employee of the Clinton Foundation? Did he have a clearance, and what was his need to know? Who sent it to him? There is little doubt it was all on purpose.

Here Are The 23 Classified Memos Sidney Blumenthal Sent To Hillary Clinton [dailycaller.com]

dwillden ( 521345 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @10:21AM ( #52462927 ) Homepage
Re:I wonder if they'll cancel Petraeus's sentence ( Score: 2 )

Petreaus doesn't come anywhere near comparing to Snowden. Petreaus gave 8 binders of his notes (some classified some not) to his Mistress/biographer. She has a clearance, and referred to the notes in preparing the biography but no classified information was included in her product.

Snowden stole thousands of classified documents and released them without regard to who got them.

The scale and scope are not comparable. Snowden's crime was far worse and far more damaging.

IronOxen ( 2502562 ) writes: on Wednesday July 06, 2016 @10:32PM ( #52460523 )

Re:Not surprising ( Score: 1 )

https://www.fbi.gov/sacramento... [fbi.gov] How about that for president from last year? This guy just took some work home...

ooloorie ( 4394035 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @11:52PM ( #52468371 )
Re:I wonder if they'll cancel Petraeus's sentence ( Score: 2 )

You are correct: what he confirmed was that Clinton lied under oath to Congress, not to the FBI. (He also confirmed that she lied to the American people.)

She couldn't have lied under oath to the FBI because she wasn't put under oath, and her interviews were neither recorded nor transcripts prepared, which really makes the whole investigation a farce.

Comey will now be tasked with a formal investigation of her lying to Congress. If we're lucky, they'll still get her.

ooloorie ( 4394035 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @11:24AM ( #52463403 )

Re:I wonder if they'll cancel Petraeus's sentence ( Score: 2 )

She said that because nothing marked classified had been sent to her.

She has said that. She has also made the same statement without the word "marked".

I know this may be tough to believe, but a person can be wrong without actually lying.

The fact that she phrased her statement so carefully actually shows the opposite: even if literally true, that statement is intended to deceive.

Even if the person is question is someone you disagree with politically.

I don't disagree much with Clinton politically as far as I know (it's hard to know what she really believes); I actually used to be a registered Democrat until a few years ago.

I think Clinton is unsuitable for the job of president because she is dishonest, corrupt, and, above all, incompetent.

ooloorie ( 4394035 ) writes: on Thursday July 07, 2016 @09:20PM ( #52467721 )

Re:I wonder if they'll cancel Petraeus's sentence ( Score: 2 )

Are you living under a rock? Her private E-mail server, the hundreds of millions of dollars of donations to the Clinton Foundation while she was in office, her nepotism, her speaking fees, her corporate cronyism, her lies about her stance on gay marriage, and her revisionist AIDS history alone ought to be enough to consider her profoundly dishonest, corrupt, and incompetent, and we haven't even gotten to the real political stuff that the Republicans always harp on about. Really, what kind of gullible fool are you?

[Jan 05, 2018] FBI Chief FOIA Officer Every Single Memo Comey Leaked Was Classified

Jan 05, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

While Richman told CNN "No memo was given to me that was marked 'classified,' and James Comey told Congressional investigators he tried to "write it in such a way that I don't include anything that would trigger a classification," it appears the FBI's chief FOIA officer disagrees .

While we previously reported that Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) said four of the 7 Comey memos he reviewed were "marked classified" at the "Secret" or "Confidential" level - tonight we find out that every single Comey memo was classified at the time, per Judicial Watch director of investigations Chris Farrell - who has a signed declaration from the FBI's chief FOIA officer to that effect:

We have a sworn declaration from David Hardy who is the chief FOIA officer of the FBI that we obtained just in the last few days, and in that sworn declaration, Mr. Hardy says that all of Comey's memos - all of them, were classified at the time they were written, and they remain classified. - Chris Farrell, Judicial Watch

Therefore, Farrell points out, Comey mishandled national defense information when he "knowingly and willfully" leaked them to his friend at Columbia University.

It's also mishandling of national defense information, which is a crime. So it's clear that Mr. Comey not only authored those documents, but then knowingly and willfully leaked them to persons unauthorized, which is in and of itself a national security crime. Mr. Comey should have been read his rights back on June 8th when he testified before the Senate.

In closing, Farrell tells Dobbs "Recently retired and active duty FBI agents have told me - and it's several of them, they consider Comey to be a dirty cop ."

[Jan 01, 2018] Do Rosenstein and Mueller Have Conflicts of Interest in the Trump Investigation? by Jonathan Turley

Why Rosenstein does not investigate the DNC corruption instead or along with targeting Trump? "Who the hell cares if it was the Russians who hacked DNC emails that proved their hypocrisy, mendacity and the corruption of the media?" What was the crime committed by Trump that warrant opening the investigation ?
Notable quotes:
"... Mueller has a rather large conflict of interest: http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-06-19/hillary-clinton-told-fbis-mueller-deliver-uranium-russians-2009-secret-plane-side-ta ..."
"... Mueller participated in one of the greatest expansions of mass surveillance in human history. ..."
"... Mueller was even okay with the CIA conducting torture programs after his own agents warned against participation. Agents were simply instructed not to document such torture, and any "war crimes files" were made to disappear. Not only did "collect it all" surveillance and torture programs continue, but Mueller's (and then Comey's) FBI later worked to prosecute NSA and CIA whistleblowers who revealed these illegalities. ..."
"... There's much more about Mueller which makes it clear he's no friend of democracy. http://www.globalresearch.ca/special-prosecutor-robert-mueller-is-a-political-hack/5594943 ..."
"... Apparatchik /ˌɑːpəˈrɑːtʃɪk/ (Russian: аппара́тчик [ɐpɐˈratɕɪk]) is a Russian colloquial term for a full-time, professional functionary of the Communist Party or government "apparat" (apparatus) that held any position of bureaucratic or political responsibility, with the exception of the higher ranks of management called "Nomenklatura". James Billington describes one as "a man not of grand plans, but of a hundred carefully executed details."[1] It is often considered a derogatory term, with negative connotations in terms of the quality, competence, and attitude of a person thus described.[2] ..."
"... Rosenstein and Mueller's Excellent Adventure. Mr. Mueller's Day Off. Sorry, it is hard to take this unconstitutional special counsel in search of a crime seriously. ..."
"... Rosenstein and Goldilocks??? You know, like from Hamlet. . . ..."
"... When Comey testified that AG Loretta Lynch ordered him to call the criminal investigation of Hillary Clinton's violations of email-protocols on a private server & ignoring security classifications, putting our National Security at risk -- why didn't the Senate Intelligence Committee subpoena Ms. Lynch to testify ..."
"... Why did AG Loretta Lynch refuse to demand that the FBI put Hillary under oath & also record their questioning of her during Emailgate? Why was Hillary accorded special privileges in violation of FBI-protocols -- that citizens would never be accorded? ..."
"... Mueller is close to the Clintons -- he is close to Comey. In my opinion, a man of integrity would not have accepted the role of Special Counsel in this trumped-up coup d'etat. Shame on him. ..."
"... as long as the moronic brain-washed idiots on Broadway continue to give Hillary standing ovations just because she "tried" to break the glass ceiling .you know, the participation trophy ..then she will keep on thinking she is actually someone worth admiring. She is not. She is incompetent. She is corrupt. She is a criminal. She is unethical. She is, and always will be Crooked Hillary. A failed politician who should be in prison for the rest of her life. ..."
"... From Comey's statements regarding Hillary Clinton, I believe that should be reopened, especially regarding Bill Clinton's meeting with then Attorney General Lynch. Is Lynch so stupid not to think the public would see that for what it was, a cover-up. The Russia thing is a cloak to cover the Clinton/Lynch meeting. ..."
"... Rosenstein worked under Mueller for 3 years, early in Rosenstein's DOJ career: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rod_Rosenstein#Department_of_Justice You can argue appearance of impropriety on both sides. Mueller is friends with Comey, and he was Rosenstein's boss at the beginning of Rosenstein's DOJ career. ..."
"... "Hardcore anti-Trump Democrat Senator from Virginia and Russia conspiracy theorist, Mark Warner, made $6 million from Russian search engine and tech company Yandex back in 2012. GotNews reports that the $6 million he pocketed represents 10% of his entire net worth. This is corroborated by the Christian Science Monitor, which reported his net worth to be around $80 million." ..."
"... Let's think about Hillary and Bill that were "broke" when they left the White House and then trace their actions while following the money. The uranium sale to the Russians was just the tip of the iceberg. They enriched themselves on the backs of the American people and should be in jail. Trump acted within the law as far as we can see and the investigations don't stop. ..."
"... It's starting to look more like an insurrection than an investigation. Definition of insurrection : an act or instance of revolting against civil authority or an established government. ..."
"... I think Mueller is too close to Comey to investigate this whole thing. I know that I could not be completely fair if one of my friends was a witness. I would clearly give them more weight. ..."
"... "If he 'doesn't have a conflict of interest' it's because lawyers have turned that phrase into a term-of-art which allows them to go about their scuzzy ways blatant partiality notwithstanding. The man who has no conflict of interest has hired four lawyers who are part of the modest minority of the public who finance Democratic Party campaigns, of which 3 have given four figure sums to Democratic campaigns. It's not difficult to find attorneys who do not make political contributions of note. Only a single-digit minority of the public are campaign contributors ..."
Jun 19, 2017 | jonathanturley.org

Debbie Barnhart says: June 19, 2017 at 11:00 PM

This is getting so ridiculous! Let's have everyone recluse themselves and get down to the work of running the country! Who the hell cares if it was the Russians who hacked DNC emails that proved their hypocrisy, mendacity and the corruption of the media? Why aren't we "investigating" the DNC? Answer: because our "media" has been weaponized by them against it's "enemies."

Putin is an enemy because he didn't take kindly to Clinton's political weaponizing the press in it's sphere of influence. Can't say I blame him. If the CIA can't hack Putin, and the US is helpless to prevent further hacking, then we have a much bigger problem.

Trump's ham-fisted attempts to get actual government officials to "go public" to reduce the media heat he feels, is much ado about nothing. I wish he didn't care about the publicity, but then – if he didn't – he wouldn't be President now.

Jill says: June 19, 2017 at 8:59 PM

Mueller has a rather large conflict of interest: http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-06-19/hillary-clinton-told-fbis-mueller-deliver-uranium-russians-2009-secret-plane-side-ta

billmcwilliams says: June 19, 2017 at 7:34 PM

G.R. headline: "Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller Is a "Political Hack" -- note what JT said:

snippett: Unsure About Assassination of U.S. Citizens Living On U.S. Soil Rather than saying "of course not!", Mueller said that he wasn't sure whether Obama had the right to assassinate Americans living on American soil. Constitutional expert Jonathan Turley commented at the time: "One would hope that the FBI Director would have a handle on a few details guiding his responsibilities, including whether he can kill citizens without a charge or court order."

***

He appeared unclear whether he had the power under the Obama Kill Doctrine or, in the very least, was unwilling to discuss that power. For civil libertarians, the answer should be easy: "Of course, I do not have that power under the Constitution."

Mueller participated in one of the greatest expansions of mass surveillance in human history. As we noted in 2013:
FBI special agent Colleen Rowley points out:

Mueller was even okay with the CIA conducting torture programs after his own agents warned against participation. Agents were simply instructed not to document such torture, and any "war crimes files" were made to disappear. Not only did "collect it all" surveillance and torture programs continue, but Mueller's (and then Comey's) FBI later worked to prosecute NSA and CIA whistleblowers who revealed these illegalities.

There's much more about Mueller which makes it clear he's no friend of democracy.
http://www.globalresearch.ca/special-prosecutor-robert-mueller-is-a-political-hack/5594943

MLK's CoinTelPro says: June 19, 2017 at 4:03 PM
All parties involved swore a supreme loyalty oath to the U.S. Constitution, which includes fidelity to our Bill of Rights. All ignored the torture, illegal spying and abusing the Espionage Act but they did lock up those that had fidelity to their oath (i.e.: John Kiriakou).

Why has the Press lost interest in that disloyalty by most, not all, DOJ employees – they swore to protect Americans' constitutional rights.

Squeeky Fromm, Girl Reporter says: June 19, 2017 at 1:45 PM
Here is a good blog article on Mueller: http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2017/06/special-prosecutor-mueller-political-hack.html

This goes into some of Mueller's past, and is very informative.

Squeeky Fromm
Girl Reporter

billmcwilliams says: June 19, 2017 at 2:19 PM
Thanks, Ms. Fromm.

Whenever a member or supporter of the !% tells us that Mr. X is highly respected etc., you can be certain that Mr. X will not act contrary to the beliefs and aspirations of the established order.

Mr. Mueller is Mr.X.

Squeeky Fromm, Girl Reporter says: June 19, 2017 at 3:20 PM
You are exactly right! Mueller is an Apparatchik. Which wiki says is:

Apparatchik /ˌɑːpəˈrɑːtʃɪk/ (Russian: аппара́тчик [ɐpɐˈratɕɪk]) is a Russian colloquial term for a full-time, professional functionary of the Communist Party or government "apparat" (apparatus) that held any position of bureaucratic or political responsibility, with the exception of the higher ranks of management called "Nomenklatura". James Billington describes one as "a man not of grand plans, but of a hundred carefully executed details."[1] It is often considered a derogatory term, with negative connotations in terms of the quality, competence, and attitude of a person thus described.[2]

Members of the "apparat" were frequently transferred between different areas of responsibility, usually with little or no actual training for their new areas of responsibility. Thus, the term apparatchik, or "agent of the apparatus" was usually the best possible description of the person's profession and occupation.[3]

Not all apparatchiks held lifelong positions. Many only entered such positions in middle age.[4]

Today apparatchik is also used in contexts other than that of the Soviet Union or communist countries. According to Collins English Dictionary the word can mean "an official or bureaucrat in any organization".[5]

According to Douglas Harper's Online Etymology Dictionary, the term was also used in the meaning "Communist agent or spy", originating in the writings of Arthur Koestler, c. 1941.[6]

In Australia, the term is often used to describe people who have made their career as factional operatives and leaders in political parties, and who are therefore perceived to have little 'real-world' experience outside politics.

Squeeky Fromm
Girl Reporter

TBob says: June 19, 2017 at 2:56 PM
Every time I say the name Mueller, I can't help but think of Ferris Bueller. Mueller? Mueller? Anyone? Anyone find a crime yet?
TBob says: June 19, 2017 at 3:02 PM
Rosenstein and Mueller's Excellent Adventure. Mr. Mueller's Day Off. Sorry, it is hard to take this unconstitutional special counsel in search of a crime seriously.
Squeeky Fromm, Girl Reporter says: June 19, 2017 at 3:24 PM
Rosenstein and Goldilocks??? You know, like from Hamlet. . .

Squeeky Fromm
Girl Reporter

Gadfly M (@GadflyMorse) says: June 19, 2017 at 1:39 PM
When Comey testified that AG Loretta Lynch ordered him to call the criminal investigation of Hillary Clinton's violations of email-protocols on a private server & ignoring security classifications, putting our National Security at risk -- why didn't the Senate Intelligence Committee subpoena Ms. Lynch to testify regarding:
  1. Why did she advise Comey to call the investigation a "matter"? Why was she pressuring him to back-off and not indict Hillary? To what degree was POTUS Obama involved in Hillary's e-mail gate? What was in the 30,000 emails that Hillary deleted?
  2. What took place between Bill Clinton and Loretta Lynch on the airplane during Tarmac-gate in AZ? They didn't talk about their "grandkids" alone, did they ergo, did Bill Clinton promise that if AG Lynch & Comey refused to recommend an indictment that Hillary would recommend her to be nominated for the US Supreme Court? What, if any other, quid-pro-quos were offered by Bill on behalf of Hillary in order to obstruct justice?
  3. Why did AG Loretta Lynch refuse to demand that the FBI put Hillary under oath & also record their questioning of her during Emailgate? Why was Hillary accorded special privileges in violation of FBI-protocols -- that citizens would never be accorded? What was Obama-Lynch's role in aiding-and-abetting Hillary to avoid prosecution of crimes that other US citizens would endure for lesser crimes?

Let's be honest please: It wasn't Trump or the Russians who obstructed justice -- attempted to rig our elections -- who perverted the course of justice: -- It was Obama, Bill & Hillary Clinton, AG Loretta Lynch and Comey– all of whom thought that Hillary would be POTUS and were happy to help her out -- and whom were willing to turn a blind-eye -- to her crimes in order to enjoy the perks that she would provide in return for ignoring her blatant, willful & criminal activities.

Mueller is close to the Clintons -- he is close to Comey. In my opinion, a man of integrity would not have accepted the role of Special Counsel in this trumped-up coup d'etat. Shame on him.

TBob says: June 19, 2017 at 7:40 PM

Yes! But, as long as the moronic brain-washed idiots on Broadway continue to give Hillary standing ovations just because she "tried" to break the glass ceiling .you know, the participation trophy ..then she will keep on thinking she is actually someone worth admiring. She is not. She is incompetent. She is corrupt. She is a criminal. She is unethical. She is, and always will be Crooked Hillary. A failed politician who should be in prison for the rest of her life. The idiots on the left who continue to venerate her are true 'sycophants' -- emphasis on 'sick.'

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4619402/Bill-Hillary-Clinton-enjoy-date-night-Broadway-play.html

Sandi Hemming says: June 19, 2017 at 7:56 PM
From Comey's statements regarding Hillary Clinton, I believe that should be reopened, especially regarding Bill Clinton's meeting with then Attorney General Lynch. Is Lynch so stupid not to think the public would see that for what it was, a cover-up. The Russia thing is a cloak to cover the Clinton/Lynch meeting. It's a sham that DOJ has let go. My main complaint is -- how much is this going to cost the taxpayer? It has no basis in fact from anyone, so why are we here? Well, because the Dems are afraid of Donald Trump! Sessions should tell his Deputy to end this by terminating the whole thing. Hopefully Dems will,pay for this in 2018. We will not let Americans forget!

PeaceFrog says: June 19, 2017 at 10:37 AM

FWIW,

Rosenstein worked under Mueller for 3 years, early in Rosenstein's DOJ career: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rod_Rosenstein#Department_of_Justice You can argue appearance of impropriety on both sides. Mueller is friends with Comey, and he was Rosenstein's boss at the beginning of Rosenstein's DOJ career.

TBob says: June 19, 2017 at 8:17 AM

The Dems won't rest until they get Trump's tax returns. Next we'll see "leaks" coming out of the IRS because Trump hasn't cleaned house over there yet.

And, yes, if Trump is to reveal his tax returns, so should every member of Congress be under scrutiny and/or investigation. I'm sure we'd find some interesting information. Like this from Mark Warner's:

http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2017/05/report-anti-trump-senator-mark-warner-made-6-million-2012-russian-tech-business/

-- -- -- -- -- -- --

"Hardcore anti-Trump Democrat Senator from Virginia and Russia conspiracy theorist, Mark Warner, made $6 million from Russian search engine and tech company Yandex back in 2012. GotNews reports that the $6 million he pocketed represents 10% of his entire net worth. This is corroborated by the Christian Science Monitor, which reported his net worth to be around $80 million."

-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -

"As far as we know, President Donald J. Trump has made 0% of his net worth from Russian companies. Maybe Warner should investigate his own ties to Russia.

Virginia Democratic Senator Mark Warner, the ranking member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, is blocking the White House from appointing a Treasury Department official to oversee financial crimes committed by terrorists. Warner, worth over $80 million, is one of the Senate's richest members."

Allan says: June 19, 2017 at 9:02 AM
Let's think about Hillary and Bill that were "broke" when they left the White House and then trace their actions while following the money. The uranium sale to the Russians was just the tip of the iceberg. They enriched themselves on the backs of the American people and should be in jail. Trump acted within the law as far as we can see and the investigations don't stop.

The left is tribal and now even becoming openly violent.

Hempmeister says: June 19, 2017 at 7:48 AM

It's starting to look more like an insurrection than an investigation. Definition of insurrection : an act or instance of revolting against civil authority or an established government.
TBob says: June 19, 2017 at 7:15 AM
What a mess. Mueller has to recuse himself on anything Comey related, right? So, if Mueller opens an investigation into obstruction, then both he and Rosenstein have to step aside. So Trump is correct when he says he is not under investigation. Hasn't Comey, (and Coats and Rogers) all testified under oath that there was no obstruction? Hasn't it been determined that there is no 'collusion' (whatever that means) between Trump and Russia? So what is the special counsel investigating?

How about instead of obstruction, they take a look at sedition?

Paul Schulte says: June 19, 2017 at 7:30 AM
Tbob – is sedition still a crime?
TBob says: June 19, 2017 at 7:51 AM
18 U.S. Code § 2384 – Seditious conspiracy

If two or more persons in any State or Territory, or in any place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, conspire to overthrow, put down, or to destroy by force the Government of the United States, or to levy war against them, or to oppose by force the authority thereof, or by force to prevent, hinder, or delay the execution of any law of the United States, or by force to seize, take, or possess any property of the United States contrary to the authority thereof, they shall each be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both.

TBob says: June 19, 2017 at 8:04 AM
What exactly is the Democrat "RESIST Movement" if not perilously close to seditious conspiracy? Or 'insurrection'?
Paul Schulte says: June 19, 2017 at 8:18 AM
Tbob – I thought we had gotten rid of it when they overturned the Alien and Sedition Laws.
TBob says: June 19, 2017 at 8:50 AM
The 'Blind Sheikh' was convicted of seditious conspiracy in 1995.
Paul Schulte says: June 19, 2017 at 7:02 AM
Michael Aarethun – he is not going to find Diogenese in Washington, DC. I think Mueller is too close to Comey to investigate this whole thing. I know that I could not be completely fair if one of my friends was a witness. I would clearly give them more weight.

Don de Drain says: June 19, 2017 at 1:46 AM

Rosenstein has a clear conflict of interest. Mueller probably doesn't have a conflict of interest, but if I were in his shoes, I would hire an attorney whose sole job is to deal with conflict of interest issues and other ethical issues that are certain to come up. I would also take steps to see that this "ethics counsel" can't be fired without approval by the (acting) Attorney General -- whoever is sitting in for Sessions.
DesparatelySeekingSusan says: June 19, 2017 at 3:22 PM
"If he 'doesn't have a conflict of interest' it's because lawyers have turned that phrase into a term-of-art which allows them to go about their scuzzy ways blatant partiality notwithstanding. The man who has no conflict of interest has hired four lawyers who are part of the modest minority of the public who finance Democratic Party campaigns, of which 3 have given four figure sums to Democratic campaigns. It's not difficult to find attorneys who do not make political contributions of note. Only a single-digit minority of the public are campaign contributors. Comment dit-on Establishment stitch-up ?

[Dec 20, 2017] Peter Strzok's insurance text and the FBI's plot to stop Trump by Alexander Mercouris

Strzok's "insurance" text shows the FBI disregarded warnings that launching Russiagate was wrong and the reason of launching investigation was purely politcal
Notable quotes:
"... Over the course of this discussion Page expressed the view – commonplace in August 2016 – that Donald Trump had no prospect of winning the election. She therefore counselled that the proposed Russiagate investigation was unnecessary. Strzok responded that the FBI had no choice but to proceed with the Russiagate investigation because of the risk of not doing so was too great. ..."
"... The proposal to launch the Russiagate investigation clearly ran into resistance from some members of the FBI. Clearly they were unhappy because they were worried that it would amount to improper interference in the election. Undoubtedly they were also worried that it might violate the Hatch Act, which forbids misuse of public office to engage in partisan political activity especially during an election. ..."
"... The hardliners – and Strzok's text message clearly identifies Strzok as one of the hardliners – however overrode those objections. They insisted the Russiagate investigation had to be launched. They did so because the mere possibility of Trump winning the election, however remote, was too great a risk for them to accept. ..."
"... The key piece in the jigsaw is again the Trump Dossier. It is now known that Christopher Steele – the Trump Dossier's compiler – was in contact with the FBI in early July 2016, before publication of the DNC emails by Wikileaks on 22nd July 2016. The very first entry of the Trump Dossier dated 20th June 2016 and almost certainly seen by Strzok before Wikileaks published the DNC emails and therefore before the earliest possible date for the launch of the Russiagate investigation already claimed that the Russians had compromising material on Trump because of Trump's supposed orgy with Russian prostitutes in the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Moscow in 2013. ..."
"... Later entries in the Trump Dossier dated 19th July 2016, 30th July 2016, 5th August 2016 and 10th August 2016, and one entry incorrectly dated 26th July 2015 but which can be clearly dated to July 2016, not only claimed that the Russians were meddling in the election on Donald Trump's behalf – purportedly on the direct orders from President Putin himself – but also claimed that Trump's campaign was actively colluding with the Russians in doing this. Some of these entries would almost certainly have been seen by Strzok before the Russiagate investigation was launched, and he had probably seen all of them before he texted Page on 15th August 2016. ..."
"... It is now known that the FBI gave credence to the Trump Dossier in the summer of 2016 to the point where it used information obtained from the Trump Dossier to obtain FISA warrants, notably one authorising surveillance of Carter Page. ..."
"... There is one further possibility which is more speculative. It is now know that sometime in August 2016 the CIA forwarded to President Obama a report alleging that the Russians were meddling in the US election. All the facts show that this report was based on the Trump Dossier. Assuming that the FBI and the CIA were consulting each other and exchanging information about the Trump Dossier – as is highly likely – it is possible that the discussion in McCabe's office was also about the report the CIA was proposing to send to Obama, with some people within the FBI concerned that the Trump Dossier's unverified allegations were being used to compile a report for the President of the United States. Regardless of this second possibility, the Strzok text is key evidence because it shows that the FBI pressed ahead with the Russiagate investigation despite the objections of some of its members. ..."
Dec 20, 2017 | theduran.com

Strzok's "insurance" text shows the FBI disregarded warnings that launching Russiagate was wrong

The last few days the media has been buzzing with speculation about the precise meaning of a text message sent by the sacked FBI investigator Peter Strzok to his lover FBI lawyer Lisa Page on 15th August 2016. I am puzzled by this speculation. I don't think there is any mystery at all about this text. There is no doubt it refers to the Russiagate investigation and its meaning is perfectly clear. Let's look first at the text itself

"I want to believe the path you threw out for consideration in Andy's office that there's no way he gets elected -- but I'm afraid we can't take that risk. It's like an insurance policy in the unlikely event you die before you're 40 ."

"Andy" is FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe. "He" is Donald Trump. If that was not so someone by now would have said so. The text shows Strzok and Page took part in a discussion in McCabe's office in which Donald Trump and the election were discussed. Over the course of this discussion Page expressed the view – commonplace in August 2016 – that Donald Trump had no prospect of winning the election. She therefore counselled that the proposed Russiagate investigation was unnecessary. Strzok responded that the FBI had no choice but to proceed with the Russiagate investigation because of the risk of not doing so was too great.

The Russiagate investigation is obviously the "insurance" Strzok is talking about. Nothing else makes sense. Does the text message tell us anything else? The short answer is it does, and it is important.
The proposal to launch the Russiagate investigation clearly ran into resistance from some members of the FBI. Clearly they were unhappy because they were worried that it would amount to improper interference in the election. Undoubtedly they were also worried that it might violate the Hatch Act, which forbids misuse of public office to engage in partisan political activity especially during an election.

That there were discussions within the FBI about the Hatch Act over the course of the summer of 2016 we know because concern about a possible violation of the Hatch Act was the reason former FBI Director James Comey gave for his refusal to sign the US intelligence community's 7th October 2016 statement which blamed Russia for meddling in the US election.

It was clearly in response to these concerns about the possible unlawfulness of the Russiagate investigation and its possible impropriety that Page who is a lawyer suggested that there was no need to launch the Russiagate investigation because Trump was certain to lose the election anyway.

The hardliners – and Strzok's text message clearly identifies Strzok as one of the hardliners – however overrode those objections. They insisted the Russiagate investigation had to be launched. They did so because the mere possibility of Trump winning the election, however remote, was too great a risk for them to accept.

As to why this was so, the answer is that Strzok and the other members of the FBI who supported him had by this point clearly convinced themselves that the claims that Donald Trump was connected to the Russians were true.

The key piece in the jigsaw is again the Trump Dossier. It is now known that Christopher Steele – the Trump Dossier's compiler – was in contact with the FBI in early July 2016, before publication of the DNC emails by Wikileaks on 22nd July 2016. The very first entry of the Trump Dossier dated 20th June 2016 and almost certainly seen by Strzok before Wikileaks published the DNC emails and therefore before the earliest possible date for the launch of the Russiagate investigation already claimed that the Russians had compromising material on Trump because of Trump's supposed orgy with Russian prostitutes in the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Moscow in 2013.

Later entries in the Trump Dossier dated 19th July 2016, 30th July 2016, 5th August 2016 and 10th August 2016, and one entry incorrectly dated 26th July 2015 but which can be clearly dated to July 2016, not only claimed that the Russians were meddling in the election on Donald Trump's behalf – purportedly on the direct orders from President Putin himself – but also claimed that Trump's campaign was actively colluding with the Russians in doing this. Some of these entries would almost certainly have been seen by Strzok before the Russiagate investigation was launched, and he had probably seen all of them before he texted Page on 15th August 2016.

It is now known that the FBI gave credence to the Trump Dossier in the summer of 2016 to the point where it used information obtained from the Trump Dossier to obtain FISA warrants, notably one authorising surveillance of Carter Page.

That fact alone is sufficient to explain why hardliners within the FBI like Strzok were insisting in the summer of 2016 that the Russiagate investigation had to be launched despite the doubts about its lawfulness and propriety expressed by some people within the FBI.

It was in order to arrive at a decision whether or not to launch the Russiagate investigation despite the doubts some were expressing about it that the meeting in McCabe's office was called, with the decision being to proceed as Strzok wanted despite the doubts.

All this seems to me obvious from the wording of Strzok's text, from its date, and from the surrounding circumstances.

There is one further possibility which is more speculative. It is now know that sometime in August 2016 the CIA forwarded to President Obama a report alleging that the Russians were meddling in the US election. All the facts show that this report was based on the Trump Dossier. Assuming that the FBI and the CIA were consulting each other and exchanging information about the Trump Dossier – as is highly likely – it is possible that the discussion in McCabe's office was also about the report the CIA was proposing to send to Obama, with some people within the FBI concerned that the Trump Dossier's unverified allegations were being used to compile a report for the President of the United States. Regardless of this second possibility, the Strzok text is key evidence because it shows that the FBI pressed ahead with the Russiagate investigation despite the objections of some of its members.

Should there ever be an investigation by a second Special Counsel of the FBI's conduct during the election, and should criminal charges ever be brought against its top officials for the things they did during the election, this may prove to be important. It would show that they pressed ahead and did things disregarding warnings that what they were proposing to do was wrong.

[Dec 16, 2017] Congressman Tells Rod Rosenstein That James Comey BROKE THE LAW then Rosenstein Agrees!

Dec 15, 2017 | www.youtube.com

Congressman Tells Rod Rosenstein That James Comey BROKE THE LAW then Rosenstein Agrees! 12/13/17

Congressman Louie Gohmert brings up the fact that past FBI Director James Comey broke federal law and FBI employee policy by intentionally leaking a memo of his conversations with President Donald Trump to a friend to then leak to the press. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein then agrees with the Congressman.

[Nov 06, 2017] Early Comey Memo Accused Hillary Of Gross Negligence, Punishable By Jail

Notable quotes:
"... An early draft of former FBI Director James Comey's statement closing out the Hillary Clinton email case accused the former Secretary of State of having been 'grossly negligent" in handling classified information, new memos to Congress show. ..."
"... "There is evidence to support a conclusion that Secretary Clinton, and others, used the email server in a manner that was grossly negligent with respect to the handling of classified information," reads the statement, one of Comey's earliest drafts. ..."
"... Of course, Comey's final statement, while critical of Hillary's email usage, alleged that no prosecutor would pursue charges against actions which he described only as "extremely careless." ..."
"... Meanwhile, Section 793 of federal law states that "gross negligence" with respect to the handling of national defense documents is punishable by a fine and up to 10 years in prison ...so you can see why that might present a problem for Hillary. ..."
"... ...that said, we're going to go out on a limb and question whether it just might have had something to do with that infamous meeting between Bill Clinton and then Attorney General Loretta Lynch, Comey's boss, that happened just 6 days before Comey made his statement? ..."
Nov 06, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com

The Hill , early drafts of former FBI Director James Comey's statement on Hillary Clinton's email case accused the former Secretary of State of "gross negligence" in her handling of classified information as opposed to the "extremely careless" phrase that made its way into the final statement.

As The Hill further points out, the change in language is significant since federal law states that "gross negligence" in handling the nation's intelligence can be punished criminally with prison time or fines whereas "extreme carelessness" has no such legal definition and/or ramifications.

An early draft of former FBI Director James Comey's statement closing out the Hillary Clinton email case accused the former Secretary of State of having been 'grossly negligent" in handling classified information, new memos to Congress show.

The tough language was changed to the much softer accusation that Clinton had been "extremely careless" in her handling of classified information when Comey announced in July 2016 there would be no charges against her.

The draft, written weeks before the announcement of no charges, was described by multiple sources who saw the document both before and after it was sent to the Senate Judiciary Committee this past weekend.

"There is evidence to support a conclusion that Secretary Clinton, and others, used the email server in a manner that was grossly negligent with respect to the handling of classified information," reads the statement, one of Comey's earliest drafts.

Those sources said the draft statement was subsequently changed in red-line edits to conclude that the handling of 110 emails containing classified information that were transmitted by Clinton and her aides over her insecure personal email server was "extremely careless."

Of course, Comey's final statement, while critical of Hillary's email usage, alleged that no prosecutor would pursue charges against actions which he described only as "extremely careless."

"Although we did not find clear evidence that Secretary Clinton or her colleagues intended to violate laws governing the handling of the classified information, there is evidence that they were extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information."

"There is evidence to support a conclusion that any reasonable person in Secretary Clinton's position or in the position of those with whom she was corresponding about the matters should have known that an unclassified system was no place for that conversation."

Meanwhile, Section 793 of federal law states that "gross negligence" with respect to the handling of national defense documents is punishable by a fine and up to 10 years in prison ...so you can see why that might present a problem for Hillary.

"Whoever, being entrusted with or having lawful possession or control of any document, writing, code book, signal book, sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, instrument, appliance, note, or information, relating to the national defense, (1) through gross negligence permits the same to be removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of his trust, or to be lost, stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, or (2) having knowledge that the same has been illegally removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of its trust, or lost, or stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, and fails to make prompt report of such loss, theft, abstraction, or destruction to his superior officer -- shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both."

Unfortunately, The Hill's sources couldn't confirm the most important detail behind this bombshell new revelation, namely who made the call to the change the language...

The sources, who spoke only on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media, said the memos show that at least three top FBI officials were involved in helping Comey fashion and edit the statement, including Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, General Counsel James Baker and Chief of Staff Jim Rybicki.

The documents turned over to Congress do not indicate who recommended the key wording changes, the sources said. The Senate Judiciary Committee is likely to demand the FBI identify who made the changes and why, the sources said.

...that said, we're going to go out on a limb and question whether it just might have had something to do with that infamous meeting between Bill Clinton and then Attorney General Loretta Lynch, Comey's boss, that happened just 6 days before Comey made his statement?

NoVa -> hedgeless_horseman , Nov 6, 2017 3:53 PM

That memo was obviously written before Bill talked with Lynch on the Phoenix tarmac (about 115 degress) to discuss golf and their grandchildren...

NoVa

CuttingEdge -> GUS100CORRINA , Nov 6, 2017 4:12 PM

Ships deserting a sinking rat

Bastiat -> CuttingEdge , Nov 6, 2017 4:19 PM

Seems like Comey must have got zapped with a cattle prod no matter which way he went. Serves him right for giving up his soul for power.

pods -> GUS100CORRINA , Nov 6, 2017 4:16 PM

The mere presence of a private server that sent/received classified information is THE EVIDENCE that she intended to mishandle classified information. Jesus H. Christ on a cracker what are these people smoking? That's like saying that just because you were drunk and decided to drive that you didn't intend to drive drunk.

pods

2ndamendment , Nov 6, 2017 3:52 PM

And yet STILL no charges. Shocking, I know.

Christopher Steele must have some serious dirt on Comey that this has all been swept under the rug.

moneybots , Nov 6, 2017 4:20 PM

" ...early drafts of former FBI Director James Comey's statement on Hillary Clinton's email case accused the former Secretary of State of "gross negligence" in her handling of classified information as opposed to the "extremely careless" phrase that made its way into the final statement."

Extremely careless = gross negligence.

[Oct 24, 2017] House Launches Probe Into Comeys Handling Of Clinton Email Investigation

The neoliberal "the new class" to which Clintons belong like nomenklatura in the USSR are above the law.
Notable quotes:
"... After months of inexplicable delays, the chairman of the House Judiciary and Oversight committees, Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), announced moments ago a joint investigation into how the Justice Department handled last year's investigation into Hillary Clinton's private email server. ..."
"... Oh goody, Trey Gowdy doing another investigation. Isn't he 0 for many on his investigations. 0 as in zero, nada, nill, squat, zippo. He is another political empty suit with a bad haircut. ..."
"... Well said. The Clinton network leads to the real money in this game. Any real investigation would expose many of the primary players. It would also expose the network for what it is, that being a mechanism to scam both the American people and the people of the world. ..."
"... Perhaps a real investigation will now only be done from outside the system (as the U.S. political system seems utterly incapable of investigating or policing itself). ..."
"... You're probably right, but there's a chance this whole thing could go sidewise on Hillary in a hurry, Weinstein-style. ..."
"... We already know Honest Hill'rey's other IT guy (Bryan Pagliano) ignored subpoenas from congress...twice. ..."
"... Another classic case of "the Boy that cried wolf" for the Trumpettes to believe justice is coming to the Clintons. The House Judiciary and Oversight committees, will turn up nothing, apart from some procedural mistakes. A complete waste of time and tax payer money. Only the Goldfish will be happy over another charade. Killary is immune from normal laws. ..."
"... Potemkin Justice. Not a damn thing will come of it unless they find that one of Hillary's aides parked in a handicapped spot. ..."
"... The TV showed me Trump saying, "She's been through enough" and "They're good people" when referring to Hillary and Bill Clinton. ..."
"... Stopped reading at "they do not recognize wealth, power, or social status." ..."
Oct 24, 2017 | www.zerohedge.com
Hillary's former IT consultant Paul Combetta who admitted to deleting Hillary's emails despite the existence of a Congressional subpoena, it seems as though James Comey has just had his very own "oh shit" moment.

After months of inexplicable delays, the chairman of the House Judiciary and Oversight committees, Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) and Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), announced moments ago a joint investigation into how the Justice Department handled last year's investigation into Hillary Clinton's private email server.

Among other things, Goodlatte and Gowdy said that the FBI must answer for why it chose to provide public updates in the Clinton investigation but not in the Trump investigation and why the FBI decided to " appropriate full decision making in respect to charging or not charging Secretary Clinton," a power typically left to the DOJ.

"Our justice system is represented by a blind-folded woman holding a set of scales. Those scales do not tip to the right or the left; they do not recognize wealth, power, or social status. The impartiality of our justice system is the bedrock of our republic and our fellow citizens must have confidence in its objectivity, independence, and evenhandedness. The law is the most equalizing force in this country. No entity or individual is exempt from oversight.

"Decisions made by the Department of Justice in 2016 have led to a host of outstanding questions that must be answered. These include, but are not limited to:

???? #BREAKING : @RepGoodlatte & @TGowdySC to investigate #DOJ decisions made in 2016 to ensure transparency and accountability at the agency. pic.twitter.com/EOm4pnHbTG

-- House Judiciary ? (@HouseJudiciary) October 24, 2017

Of course, this comes just one day after Comey revealed his secret Twitter account which led the internet to wildly speculate that he may be running for a political office...which, these days, being under investigation by multiple Congressional committees might just mean he has a good shot.

Finally, we leave you with one artist's depiction of how the Comey 'investigation' of Hillary's email scandal played out...

AlaricBalth -> Creepy_Azz_Crackaah , Oct 24, 2017 1:03 PM

"Our justice system is represented by a blind-folded woman holding a set of scales. Those scales do not tip to the right or the left; they do not recognize wealth, power, or social status. The impartiality of our justice system is the bedrock of our republic..."

Spewed coffee after reading this quote.

Ghost of PartysOver -> AlaricBalth , Oct 24, 2017 1:10 PM

Oh goody, Trey Gowdy doing another investigation. Isn't he 0 for many on his investigations. 0 as in zero, nada, nill, squat, zippo. He is another political empty suit with a bad haircut.

nope-1004 -> Ghost of PartysOver , Oct 24, 2017 1:12 PM

LAMP POST!

Live stream for all to witness.

macholatte -> nope-1004 , Oct 24, 2017 1:17 PM

It's nice publicity to hear that the Congress is "investigating". It's NOT nice to know that the DOJ is doing nothing. Probably 50 top level people at the FBI need to be fired as well as another 50 at DOJ to get the ball rolling toward a Grand Jury. Until then, it's all eyewash and BULLSHIT!

Thought Processor -> Chupacabra-322 , Oct 24, 2017 2:11 PM

Well said. The Clinton network leads to the real money in this game. Any real investigation would expose many of the primary players. It would also expose the network for what it is, that being a mechanism to scam both the American people and the people of the world.

Perhaps a real investigation will now only be done from outside the system (as the U.S. political system seems utterly incapable of investigating or policing itself). Though in time all information will surface, as good players leak the info of the bad players into the open. Which of course is why the corrupt players go after the leakers, as it is one key way they can be taken down. Also remember that they need the good players in any organization to be used as cover (as those not in the know can be used to work on legit projects). Once the good players catch on to the ruse and corruption it is, beyond a certain tipping point, all over, as the leaked information goes from drop to flood. There will simply be no way to deny it.

Ikiru -> Creepy_Azz_Crackaah , Oct 24, 2017 2:02 PM

You're probably right, but there's a chance this whole thing could go sidewise on Hillary in a hurry, Weinstein-style. If the criminal stench surrounding her gets strong enough, the rats will begin to jump ship. People will stop taking orders and doing her dirty work. She's wounded right now, if there was ever a time to finish her, it would be now. Where the fuck is the big-talking Jeff Sessions? I think they got to him--he even LOOKS scared shitless.

jimmy c korn -> Richard Chesler , Oct 24, 2017 1:28 PM

a blind-folded woman with a hand in their pockets.

chunga -> Max Cynical , Oct 24, 2017 1:00 PM

It's just not possible to have any respect for these politician people.

We already know Honest Hill'rey's other IT guy (Bryan Pagliano) ignored subpoenas from congress...twice. Remember Chaffetz "subpoenas are not suggestions"? Yeah, well they are. Chaffetz turned around and sent a letter about this to "attorney general" jeff sessions and he's done exactly shit about about it. (Look it up, that's a true story)

Then we've got president maverick outsider simply ignoring Julian Assange and Wikileaks while he squeals daily about fake news. Wikileaks has exposed more fraud than Congress ever has.

shovelhead -> DirtySanchez , Oct 24, 2017 12:57 PM

First we need to get a US Attorney. Our last one seems to have gone AWOL.

DirtySanchez -> shovelhead , Oct 24, 2017 1:05 PM

Sessions is the Attorney General. Give the man some credit. He recused himself from the Russia/Trump collusion, and this decision may very well save the republic.

If Sessions was actively involved, half the nation would never accept the findings, no matter the outcome. With Sessions voluntarily sidelined, the truth will eventually expose the criminal conspirators; all the way to the top.

Wikileaks and Assange have documented proof of criminal behavior from Obama, Lynch, Holder, Hillary, W. Bush, and more. This will be the biggest scandal to hit the world stage. Ever.

waterwitch -> DirtySanchez , Oct 24, 2017 1:18 PM

Bigger than the Awan Spy ring in Congress?

IronForge , Oct 24, 2017 12:36 PM

About Fracking Time. Toss that Evidence Eraser into Black Sites hot during the Summer and Cold during the Winter Months.

To Hell In A Ha... , Oct 24, 2017 12:40 PM

lol Another classic case of "the Boy that cried wolf" for the Trumpettes to believe justice is coming to the Clintons. The House Judiciary and Oversight committees, will turn up nothing, apart from some procedural mistakes. A complete waste of time and tax payer money. Only the Goldfish will be happy over another charade. Killary is immune from normal laws.

E.F. Mutton , Oct 24, 2017 12:37 PM

Potemkin Justice. Not a damn thing will come of it unless they find that one of Hillary's aides parked in a handicapped spot.

ToSoft4Truth , Oct 24, 2017 12:38 PM

The TV said Comey will be running for president in 2020.

Akzed -> ToSoft4Truth , Oct 24, 2017 12:39 PM

Well then it must be true.

ToSoft4Truth -> Akzed , Oct 24, 2017 12:51 PM

The TV showed me Trump saying, "She's been through enough" and "They're good people" when referring to Hillary and Bill Clinton. Holograms?

E.F. Mutton -> Gerry Fletcher , Oct 24, 2017 12:57 PM

The Blind Justice Lady is real, she just has a .45 at the back of her head held by Hillary. And don't even ask where Bill's finger is

mc888 -> BigWillyStyle887 , Oct 24, 2017 1:24 PM

Congress can't do shit without DOJ and FBI, which are both compromised and corrupt to the core.

That should have been Sessions' first order of business.

He can still get it rolling by firing Rosenstein and replacing him with someone that will do the job.They can strike down the Comey immunity deals and arrest people for violating Congressional subpeona.

They can also assemble a Grand Jury to indict Rosenstein and Mueller for the Russian collusion conspiracy to commit Espionage and Sabotage of our National Security resources. Half of Mueller's staff will then be indicted, along with Clinton, Obama, Lynch, Holder, and Comey.

Replacement of Rosenstein is the crucial first step.

Dead Indiana Sky , Oct 24, 2017 12:43 PM

Stopped reading at "they do not recognize wealth, power, or social status."

[Jun 14, 2017] Strange Oversight by Comey tells us a lot by Ray McGovern

Notable quotes:
"... Given the stakes involved in the Russia-gate investigation – now including a possible impeachment battle over removing the President of the United States – wouldn't it seem logical for the FBI to insist on its own forensics for this fundamental predicate of the case? Or could Comey's hesitancy to demand access to the DNC's computers be explained by a fear that FBI technicians not fully briefed on CIA/NSA/FBI Deep State programs might uncover a lot more than he wanted? ..."
"... "In the case of the DNC, and, I believe, the DCCC, but I'm sure the DNC, we did not have access to the devices themselves. We got relevant forensic information from a private party, a high-class entity, that had done the work. But we didn't get direct access." ..."
"... "Isn't content an important part of the forensics from a counterintelligence standpoint?" ..."
"... "It is, although what was briefed to me by my folks – the people who were my folks at the time is that they had gotten the information from the private party that they needed to understand the intrusion by the spring of 2016." ..."
"... Burr demurred on asking Comey to explain what amounts to gross misfeasance, if not worse. Perhaps, NBC could arrange for Megyn Kelly to interview Burr to ask if he has a clue as to what Putin might have been referring to when he noted, "There may be hackers, by the way, in the United States who very craftily and professionally passed the buck to Russia." ..."
"... Given the congressional intelligence "oversight" committees' obsequiousness and repeated "high esteem" for the "intelligence community," there seems an even chance that – no doubt because of an oversight – the CIA/FBI/NSA deep-stage troika failed to brief the Senate "oversight committee" chairman on WikiLeaks "Vault 7" disclosures – even when WikiLeaks publishes original CIA documents. ..."
Jun 13, 2017 | original.antiwar.com

Given the stakes involved in the Russia-gate investigation – now including a possible impeachment battle over removing the President of the United States – wouldn't it seem logical for the FBI to insist on its own forensics for this fundamental predicate of the case? Or could Comey's hesitancy to demand access to the DNC's computers be explained by a fear that FBI technicians not fully briefed on CIA/NSA/FBI Deep State programs might uncover a lot more than he wanted?

Comey was asked again about this curious oversight on June 8 by Senate Intelligence Committee Chair Richard Burr:

BURR: "And the FBI, in this case, unlike other cases that you might investigate – did you ever have access to the actual hardware that was hacked? Or did you have to rely on a third party to provide you the data that they had collected?"

COMEY: "In the case of the DNC, and, I believe, the DCCC, but I'm sure the DNC, we did not have access to the devices themselves. We got relevant forensic information from a private party, a high-class entity, that had done the work. But we didn't get direct access."

BURR: "But no content?"

COMEY: "Correct."

BURR: "Isn't content an important part of the forensics from a counterintelligence standpoint?"

COMEY: "It is, although what was briefed to me by my folks – the people who were my folks at the time is that they had gotten the information from the private party that they needed to understand the intrusion by the spring of 2016."

Burr demurred on asking Comey to explain what amounts to gross misfeasance, if not worse. Perhaps, NBC could arrange for Megyn Kelly to interview Burr to ask if he has a clue as to what Putin might have been referring to when he noted, "There may be hackers, by the way, in the United States who very craftily and professionally passed the buck to Russia."

Given the congressional intelligence "oversight" committees' obsequiousness and repeated "high esteem" for the "intelligence community," there seems an even chance that – no doubt because of an oversight – the CIA/FBI/NSA deep-stage troika failed to brief the Senate "oversight committee" chairman on WikiLeaks "Vault 7" disclosures – even when WikiLeaks publishes original CIA documents.

Ray McGovern works with Tell the Word, a publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in inner-city Washington. He was an Army Infantry/Intelligence officer and CIA analyst for a total of 30 years and now servers on the Steering Group of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS). Reprinted with permission from Consortium News .

[May 16, 2017] FBI Agents Say Comey Stood In The Way Of Clinton Email Investigation

May 16, 2017 | www.eutimes.net
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."

The agent was also surprised that the bureau did not bother to search Clinton's house during the investigation.

"We didn't search their house. We always search the house. The search should not just have been for private electronics, which contained classified material, but even for printouts of such material," he said.

"There should have been a complete search of their residence," the agent pointed out. "That the FBI did not seize devices is unbelievable. The FBI even seizes devices that have been set on fire."

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."

He added, "The idea that [the Clinton/e-mail case] didn't go to a grand jury is ridiculous."

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."

Source

[May 15, 2017] Trump fires FBI director James Comey, Swamp Goes Wild

May 10, 2017 | www.eutimes.net

In the political swamp that is Washington, and in the press swamp, motor boats began speeding every which way in the wake of Trump's decision to fire FBI Director Comey.

People in the boats are holding up signs to explain the reason for the firing.

The first sign was: COMEY LIED. Comey lied the other day. He lied in testimony before Congress, when he said Huma Abedin, Hillary Clinton's long-time aide, had sent "hundreds and thousands" of emails to her husband, Anthony Weiner, some of which contained classified information. The truth was, the FBI says, contradicting Comey, a great many of those emails were merely "backed up" on Weiner's laptop via "backup devices." Huh? Does that actually mean something? Weiner obtained those emails out of the sky, delivered by a chariot, and not from Huma? Weiner's laptop was serving as a storage device, a personal little cloud? Somebody not connected to the Hillary campaign was using the social-media's porn star as a backup for classified data? Who would that be? Putin? Putin hacked the Hillary/DNC emails, and sent them to both WikiLeaks and Anthony Weiner? "Hi Anthony. Vlad here. Keep these thousands of emails for posterity."

The next motor boat running through the swamp featured a sign that said: COMEY SCREWED UP THE HILLARY INVESTIGATION. This sign can be interpreted several ways, depending on who is in the boat. One, Comey didn't press the investigation into Hillary's personal email server far enough last summer and fall. He stalled it. He didn't ask for an indictment. That's why Trump fired him yesterday. Trump didn't fire Comey right after he was elected president, when it would have been a simple bye bye. No, Trump waited five months and then lowered the boom. Sure.

The other meaning of COMEY SCREWED UP THE HILLARY INVESTIGATION is: Comey improperly told the world (last summer) that the FBI was investigating Hillary. His announcement influenced the election. The FBI is supposed to keep absolutely quiet about ongoing investigations. Comey didn't. Then he publicly closed the book on the investigation, opened it again, and closed it again. That's why Trump just fired him. Again, Trump waited five months after the election and then got rid of Comey. And of course, Trump was morally outraged that Comey exposed Hillary in the first place, when Comey should have remained silent. Sure. That makes a lot of sense.

The next motor boat speeding across the swamp held up a big sign that said, TRUMP FIRED COMEY TO STOP THE FBI FROM INVESTIGATING THE TRUMP-RUSSIA CONNECTION. You see, for five months, Trump happily left Comey in place, knowing Comey was investigating him, Trump, and yesterday Trump had enough of that, so he fired the FBI director. Right.

The next motor boat in the swamp held up a sign that said, THIS IS NIXON ALL OVER AGAIN, THIS IS TRUMP'S WATERGATE. The sign refers to the last sign, but ups the ante. And there is another sign that says, in the same vein, NOW WE CAN IMPEACH TRUMP. And another one that says, APPOINT AN INDEPENDENT COUNSEL TO INVESTIGATE THE TRUMP-RUSSIA CONNECTION.

I'm waiting for Bob Woodward of Watergate fame to step in and say, "It's all right, folks, I'm on the case. I'll handle it. I was just eating lunch and sipping a fine wine in my underground parking garage when a shadowy figure stepped out of the gloom and whispered, 'My throat is deep, and I'll spoon-feed you secrets for the next year, but you'll have to dig up the facts. Everybody is involved in the cover-up. Comey, Sessions, Pence, Bannon, Conway, Ivanka, Putin, Gorbachev, Yeltsin, Stalin."

So why did Trump fire Comey yesterday?

I don't know, but the short answer might be: Comey's boss, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, told Trump to get rid of Comey. Sessions made the call.

Sessions now has a specific plan to make the FBI over in the image he prefers. Sessions wants to shape the Bureau according to his agendas. Sessions has looked into the Bureau and he now knows which people he wants to fire. He wants to get rid of the Obama crowd. He wants loyalists. He doesn't want a Dept. of Justice that is going in one direction, while the FBI is going in another. Sessions wants a predictable FBI. His own.

Joel Pollak, writing at Breitbart, has a simpler answer to the question, why fire Comey now? Pollak writes :

"But why fire Comey now? The answer is simple. The day before, President Barack Obama's former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper repeated, under oath, what he told NBC News' Chuck Todd on Meet the Press on March 5 - that he had seen no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government. That gave the Trump administration the breathing room to dismiss Comey - which it simply did not have before."

In other words, now Trump can't be accused of firing Comey to stop "the truth" emerging about a Trump-Russia collusion, because there isn't any collusion.

Theoretically, that might be the case-but the spin machine doesn't care about the truth or who is right and who is wrong. The machine keeps running. Those motor boats keep moving across the swamp. Signs come out. People yell and scream.

Chuck Schumer may soon compare Trump to Benedict Arnold.

For the past 65 years, the CIA has been infiltrating media and promoting many messages. In certain cases, an op involves promoting CONFLICTING messages, because the intent is sowing discord, chaos, and division. In this instance (Comey/Trump), it's a walk in the park (or a ride in the swamp). All sorts of people on both sides already have steam coming out of their ears, without any nudging or provocation.

A child could run this spin counter-spin op.

And we're just getting started.

Source

[May 10, 2017] Will Trumps Firing of FBI Director James Comey Be His Saturday Night Massacre? (Updated)

Notable quotes:
"... More specifically, whether true or not, the Democrats are likely to use this move to claim that Comey was fired for digging too hard into Trump-Russia connections ..."
"... The official story is that attorney general Jeff Session and his deputy attorney general Rosenstein wanted Comey's head. And since the FBI does report to the Department of Justice, Sessions is within his rights to demand the firing of the head of the FBI and expect the President to respect his request. So if this proves to have been a reckless move, it will reflect Trump's poor judgment in selecting Sessions as his AG, who was a controversial pick from the outset. ..."
"... I support the firing of Comey, and would have supported it if done by Clinton, Obama, Sanders or Trump. His actions wrt "intent" in handling classified information, and his unilateral (in public at least) decision on leveling charges against Clinton (which was not his job) render him unfit for office. ..."
"... Both the Right and the Left are disinclined to believe in or care about any scandal involving Russia. And it was actually the Clinton partisans who demanded Comey's head in the first place–and we all know the Clinton history with independent prosecutors. So the Democrats who whine about this or call for an independent prosecutor just end up looking like the partisan hypocrites they are. ..."
"... What this does, after a few days, is get the Russian hacking investigation out of the news, so everyone can focus firmly on debating how many people need to lose their health care to satisfy the tax-cut gods. ..."
"... I'm already seeing Twitter Dems doubling down on the Russia stuff. The Russia hysteria is setting us up so that there will be absolutely no political incentive for future Presidents to be friendly with Russia. I wonder if they don't know (or just don't care) that they aren't going to be able to put this genie back in the bottle after Trump is gone. ..."
"... All it does is reinforce existing bias. Dems are even more convinced about Russian ties, Reps are even more concerned the wheels are off, TrumpNation is even more convinced there's an evil plot out to get their guy. And the media has a click frenzy to drive ad rates. ..."
"... being anti Russian is in the very DNA of the repubs. Would the repubs turn on Trump because Trump isn't fervently anti Russian enough? I very much think so .they have a good repub vice president that I am sure ALL of them much prefer .. ..."
"... Its important to remember the disdain the country has for Versailles in general. Trump became President despite universal support for Hillary and to a lesser extent Jeb on the shores of the Potomac.The Republican Id is dedicated to hating Democrats. Bill Clinton and Obama could play Weekend at Bernie's with Reagan corpse and kill Social Security, and Republicans would still hate them. ..."
"... Communists and other boogeymen of the past are secondary to this drive. The Versailles Republicans, a different breed, could never deliver Republican votes outside of Northern Virginia for one simple reason their base despises Democrats more than they might hate Stalin. They will never give credit to a Democrat. Remember the liberal whining about how Republicans never gave Obama credit for his right wing policy pushes. ..."
"... The other key point to the GOP voter relationship is Trump WON. He beat Jeb and his sheepdogs and then he beat Hillary (Hillary and the Dems lost). Trump is the their winner so to speak. As long as Trump is denounced by the usual suspects for bizarre reasons, Trump will maintain his hold. ..."
"... fbi sorta sat on gulen charter school investigation and it would certainly help emperor trompe and prince erdo relationship if Fethu found his old self on an express flight to Ankara considering the bean "kurd" thing recently added on the takeout menu ..."
"... People are fed up. Savings & Loan mess & Iran Contra & & & & yawn Wall Street destroys the economy & no one goes to jail, Medical Industrial Complex management bloodsuckers insure that sickness leads to penury ..."
"... I am no fan of Comey. I think his self-righteousness makes him a dangerous FBI Director and a loose cannon. However, people who think this is going to hurt Trump are likely wrong. If Trump knows there's nothing in the Russia story, but he continues to string out the Democrats with it, then they're the ones who are going to look foolish after having invested so much political capital in it. ..."
"... Since you can't prove a negative, the innuendo can continue ad nauseam. ..."
"... I suspect the Democrats are unaware they are indirectly insulting the Trump voters by the Russian influence story.. They are in effect saying Trump voters were played by the "evil" Russians into voting for Trump, despite the 1Billion spend by Clinton and her considerable support in the US media. I don't imagine the Trump voters like this message. ..."
"... If Trump indirectly destroys both the Democratic and Republican parties, he might rank as one of our more important Presidents, quite unintentionally. ..."
"... Why doesnt he fire the top 10 layers of CIA instead? They are wreaking havoc for real everywhere domestically and abroad. ..."
"... If this government ever became a tyranny, if a dictator ever took charge in this country, the technological capacity that the intelligence community has given the government could enable it to impose total tyranny, and there would be no way to fight back because the most careful effort to combine together in resistance to the government, no matter how privately it was done, is within the reach of the government to know. Such is the capability of this technology. ( ) ..."
May 09, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
Posted on May 9, 2017 by Yves Smith Trump's sudden and unexpected firing of FBI director James Comey is likely to damage Trump. The question is whether this move will simply serve as the basis for sowing further doubts in the mainstream media against Trump, or will dent Trump's standing with Republicans.

Comey made an odd practice of making moves that were arguably procedurally improper in his handling of the Clinton e-mail investigation, but some favored Clinton while others were damaging, given an impression of impartiality to the general public via getting both parties riled with Comey at various points in time. And regardless of what one thinks of his political and legal judgment, Comey had a reputation of being a straight shooter.

And more generally, the director of the FBI is perceived to be a role above the partisan fray. Firing him is fraught with danger; it has the potential of turning into in a Nixonian Saturday Night Massacre, where the firing of special prosecutor Archibald Cox led the press and public to see Nixon as desperate to stymie an investigation into Watergate charges. It was the archetypal "the coverup is worse than the crime".

To minimize risk, Trump's would have needed to have engaged in a whispering campaign against Comey, or least have notified some key figures in Congress that this was about to happen and give the rationale for the turfing out. And it appears he did do that to at least a degree, in that (as you will see below), Lindsay Graham, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, made a statement supporting the firing. But given the surprised reaction in the press, it looks like any ground-sowing for this move was minimal. Caution and preparation don't rank high as Trump Administration priorities.

More specifically, whether true or not, the Democrats are likely to use this move to claim that Comey was fired for digging too hard into Trump-Russia connections .

We'll know more in the coming hours and days. The official story is that attorney general Jeff Session and his deputy attorney general Rosenstein wanted Comey's head. And since the FBI does report to the Department of Justice, Sessions is within his rights to demand the firing of the head of the FBI and expect the President to respect his request. So if this proves to have been a reckless move, it will reflect Trump's poor judgment in selecting Sessions as his AG, who was a controversial pick from the outset.

From the Wall Street Journal :

In a letter to Mr. Comey, the president wrote, "It is essential that we find new leadership for the FBI that restores public trust and confidence in its vital law enforcement mission."

Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham, a top member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, in a statement thanked Mr. Comey for his years of service to the country but said that a change in leadership at the bureau might be the best possible course of action.

"Given the recent controversies surrounding the director, I believe a fresh start will serve the FBI and the nation well. I encourage the President to select the most qualified professional available who will serve our nation's interests," said Mr. Graham, a South Carolina Republican.

Note that Sessions himself had been fired from the attorney general's office in the Clinton Administration. Clinton's attorney Janet Reno, who was the first to engage in large-scale firings of attorneys in the Department of Justice, also fired the head of the FBI. From Bloomberg :

Comey, who has led an investigation into Russia's meddling during the 2016 election and any possible links to Trump aides and associates, is only the second FBI chief to have been fired. In 1993, President Bill Clinton and Attorney General Janet Reno dismissed William Sessions.

Trump's decision means that he will get to nominate Comey's successor while the agency is deep into the Russia inquiry. The move quickly intensified Democratic calls for a special prosecutor.

Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, a member of the Judiciary Committee, said in a statement that Trump "has catastrophically compromised the FBI's ongoing investigation of his own White House's ties to Russia. Not since Watergate have our legal systems been so threatened, and our faith in the independence and integrity of those systems so shaken."

The Financial Times confirms that the Trump Administration didn't lay much groundwork with Congress :

Mr Comey's sudden dismissal shocked Republicans and Democrats. Brendan Boyle, a Democratic congressman, said the "stunning" action "shows why we must have a special prosecutor like our nation did in Watergate".

The proof of the pudding is whether Trump and Sessions will be able to ride out demands for a special prosecutor. Given how much noise and how little signal there has been, I would have though it was possible for Trump to tough this out. With the Democrats having peripheral figures like Carter Page as their supposed smoking guns, all they had was innuendo, amplified by the Mighty Wurlitzer of the media. But that may have gotten enough to Trump and his team to distort their judgment. Stay tuned.

Update 5/10, 12:15 AM . The Hill reports Dems ask Justice Dept, FBI to 'preserve any and all files' on Comey firing / Despite much howling for blood in the comments section, some readers there were able to provide what I was looking for, which is whether Congress had any basis for getting the info. Here are the two key remarks:

cm , May 9, 2017 at 7:42 pm

I support the firing of Comey, and would have supported it if done by Clinton, Obama, Sanders or Trump. His actions wrt "intent" in handling classified information, and his unilateral (in public at least) decision on leveling charges against Clinton (which was not his job) render him unfit for office.

Anyone opposing this firing should note they share opinions w/ John McCain, which ought to give any non-neocon pause

WeakendSquire , May 9, 2017 at 7:44 pm

Both the Right and the Left are disinclined to believe in or care about any scandal involving Russia. And it was actually the Clinton partisans who demanded Comey's head in the first place–and we all know the Clinton history with independent prosecutors. So the Democrats who whine about this or call for an independent prosecutor just end up looking like the partisan hypocrites they are.

What this does, after a few days, is get the Russian hacking investigation out of the news, so everyone can focus firmly on debating how many people need to lose their health care to satisfy the tax-cut gods.

Jim Haygood , May 9, 2017 at 8:01 pm

The Scream:

Senate Minority Whip Richard Durbin (D-IL) made the biggest impression, going to the Senate floor about an hour after the announcement to clearly outline the stakes.

"Any attempt to stop or undermine this FBI investigation would raise grave constitutional issues," he told colleagues.

http://www.mcclatchydc.com/news/politics-government/congress/article149589289.html#storylink=cpy

Constitutional issues ? HA HA HA HA

What is "Senator" Durbin doing about the war escalation in Afghanstan and Syria? My point exactly.

We've got a problem in politics
So few Richards, so many dicks

screen screamer , May 9, 2017 at 8:02 pm

Interestingly, Fed directors have a term of ten years and since Hoover, there has been only one to make it the full term. That would be Mr. Mueller who went twelve years as director directly following 911.

I must confess that I do not know why the others were let go or retired. I think it would make an interesting study.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Director_of_the_Federal_Bureau_of_Investigation

NotTimothyGeithner , May 9, 2017 at 11:02 pm

FBI Director is one of those jobs where if you do a good job you should suffer burnout regardless of who you are. A 10 year term is bizarre if you expect a quality job. I would expect resignation and early retirement if the job is being taken seriously. Then you have to consider the quality of staff and team work arrangements at any given time and how much workload a FBI Director or Cabinet Secretary has to deal with.

Matt , May 9, 2017 at 8:06 pm

I'm already seeing Twitter Dems doubling down on the Russia stuff. The Russia hysteria is setting us up so that there will be absolutely no political incentive for future Presidents to be friendly with Russia. I wonder if they don't know (or just don't care) that they aren't going to be able to put this genie back in the bottle after Trump is gone.

jo6pac , May 9, 2017 at 8:29 pm

Thanks I love it and they just don't care and hoping the lame stream corp. owned media will carry their propaganda. Demodogs message is we didn't fail but those looser didn't vote for us the party of corp. Amerika. Double down

John Zelnicker , May 9, 2017 at 9:51 pm

@Matt – I don't think the Twitter Dems can conceive of the notion that there is a genie or even a bottle in this situation. They are so caught up in the Russia!, Russia! hysteria that there is no room in their thinking for any kind of rational thought or any consideration of consequences.

Matt , May 9, 2017 at 10:39 pm

You're more hopeful that I am. I think the more militaristic among them are so cavalier about conflict with Russia because of the Hitler-level delusions many of them have about the military capacity of Russia.

"Just kick in the door, and the whole rotten structure will come down"

"We'll be greeted as liberators when we defeat the tyrant Putin!"

Just look at that SNL sketch that aired a few months ago. They think these people are frozen, ignorant peasants.

marym , May 9, 2017 at 8:08 pm

Nixon Library weighs in: https://twitter.com/NixonLibrary/status/862083605081862145

RichardNixonLibrary‏2Verified account? @NixonLibrary
FUN FACT: President Nixon never fired the Director of the FBI #FBIDirector #notNixonian

MyLessThanPrimeBeef , May 9, 2017 at 8:37 pm

Nixon was smart enough to avoid Russia and the USSR, and instead, worked with China that would help suppress US wages for decades.

AbateMagicThinking but Not mone y , May 9, 2017 at 8:39 pm

Personally I would be no good at power. My reading has led me to believe that you need a very strong stomach to endure what you have to deal with, whether it be human gore, hypocrisy, or the dark side of any civilization. I don't have that stomach, and if you take Comey's words at face value neither does he.

So I think you can take that as a thumbs-up.

JTMcPhee , May 9, 2017 at 10:40 pm

Nah, ask Obomber. Once you get past a little queasiness, getting "pretty good at killing folks" is a piece of cake. It's just business as usual. Ask any Civil War or WW I general officer, or Bomber Harris, or Lemay or the young guy, farm boy from Iowa who was a door gunner I knew on Vietnam. Just no problem killing gooks. His moral line was killing the water buffalo. "I know how I'd feel if someone blew away my John Deere."

AbateMagicThinking but Not money , May 9, 2017 at 11:39 pm

Re: The youg guy with the agricultural machinery sensibilities:

Although he was the manipulator of terrible power, I see him as a victim (in the scheme of things), not a member of the power-elite. And the other military you mention, were they in the power-elite? Eisenhower should have been on your list, as he straddled the divide.

Occasional Delurker , May 9, 2017 at 8:49 pm

I'm curious how this will be interpreted by people who get their news mostly via headlines. (I also wonder what proportion of the voting population that is.)

The headlines I've seen so far, if they give a reason, just make reference to the Clinton email investigation. I sort of think this will be interpreted by many mostly-headline news gatherers as meaning that Trump fired Comey because he did not, in fact, lock her up. Indeed, even those who dig deeper may still believe that this is the real reason.

So, like so many things raged about in the media, I'm not sure this really hurts Trump amongst his voters. Probably helps, really.

And for something completely different, Snowden is not a fan:

https://twitter.com/Snowden/status/862069019301601281

Art Eclectic , May 9, 2017 at 9:00 pm

All it does is reinforce existing bias. Dems are even more convinced about Russian ties, Reps are even more concerned the wheels are off, TrumpNation is even more convinced there's an evil plot out to get their guy. And the media has a click frenzy to drive ad rates.

Something for everyone.

fresno dan , May 9, 2017 at 8:54 pm

"Trump's sudden and unexpected firing of FBI director James Comey is likely to damage Trump."

How neutral or unconcerned with what the Establishment views as the requisite dogma regarding Russia is Trump? Articles about Trump being unhappy about McMaster gives the impression that Trump still believe he (Trump) is the boss.

Yes, the dems have ridiculous notions about Russians as an excuse for Hillary. But being anti Russian is in the very DNA of the repubs. Would the repubs turn on Trump because Trump isn't fervently anti Russian enough? I very much think so .they have a good repub vice president that I am sure ALL of them much prefer ..

Huey Long , May 9, 2017 at 9:00 pm

You're right, the red party is a virulently anti-red outfit. I can see the die hard GOPers turning on the Trumpster, but will his base stand for it? The Trumpster does have a bit of a cult of personality going on in some circles.

NotTimothyGeithner , May 9, 2017 at 10:25 pm

Its important to remember the disdain the country has for Versailles in general. Trump became President despite universal support for Hillary and to a lesser extent Jeb on the shores of the Potomac.The Republican Id is dedicated to hating Democrats. Bill Clinton and Obama could play Weekend at Bernie's with Reagan corpse and kill Social Security, and Republicans would still hate them.

Communists and other boogeymen of the past are secondary to this drive. The Versailles Republicans, a different breed, could never deliver Republican votes outside of Northern Virginia for one simple reason their base despises Democrats more than they might hate Stalin. They will never give credit to a Democrat. Remember the liberal whining about how Republicans never gave Obama credit for his right wing policy pushes.

The other key point to the GOP voter relationship is Trump WON. He beat Jeb and his sheepdogs and then he beat Hillary (Hillary and the Dems lost). Trump is the their winner so to speak. As long as Trump is denounced by the usual suspects for bizarre reasons, Trump will maintain his hold.

Carolinian , May 9, 2017 at 10:13 pm

They still have to have a case to make and there is none. Impeachment is just as much a fantasy as it was several months ago. In fact they no longer even have the argument that Trump must be stifled and prevented from doing all his crazy promises since they don't seem to be happening anyway.

Frankly I say good for Trump rather than letting Comey go all Janet Reno on him. If this country is going to be run by the NYT and the WaPo and CNN then we are truly sunk. He had it right when he was attacking this bunch rather than kowtowing to them.

Huey Long , May 9, 2017 at 8:57 pm

Although the Mighty Wurlitzer is going to take this firing and run with it, I wonder if anyone's really going to care outside of folks that watch a ton of CNN and MSNBC. I think scalping him at this point in his administration is likely to generate more protests and demonstrations than not scalping him.

Alex Morfesis , May 9, 2017 at 9:00 pm

Well don trumpioni may have stepped in it although, maybe this has less to do with russia perhaps fbi sorta sat on gulen charter school investigation and it would certainly help emperor trompe and prince erdo relationship if Fethu found his old self on an express flight to Ankara considering the bean "kurd" thing recently added on the takeout menu

Can easily imagine potus & his not ready for prime time players wanting to use the hoover building as a bludgeon against people who dont fall in line the blob counterforce

comey the straight shooter methynx is a bit of a "legend" but even the most slick and corrupt have certain lines they wont cross

Huey Long , May 9, 2017 at 9:39 pm

Can easily imagine potus & his not ready for prime time players wanting to use the hoover building as a bludgeon against people who dont fall in line the blob counterforce

The FBI would be the preferred outfit for this sort of thing due to their many decades of experience bludgeoning those who don't fall in line.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/COINTELPRO

alex morfesis , May 10, 2017 at 1:49 am

oh come one now that stuff never happened all you have is proof how can that stand up to narratives

oho , May 9, 2017 at 9:18 pm

"Will Trump's Firing of FBI Director James Comey Be His Saturday Night Massacre?'

It would be interesting to take a poll on what percentage of citizens know that "Saturday Night Massacre" is not a horror film.

I'd be willing to bet a beer that this kerfuffle will be confined to the Beltway media and Sunday talk shows and will fade from the news cycle/Facebook feeds rather quickly.

People are tapped out mentally with political talk.

seabos84 , May 9, 2017 at 9:41 pm

People are fed up. Savings & Loan mess & Iran Contra & & & & yawn Wall Street destroys the economy & no one goes to jail, Medical Industrial Complex management bloodsuckers insure that sickness leads to penury

1973 was 28 years after 1945. 1973 was 44 years ago. The post WW2 psuedo consensus is looooooooong gone.

I thought we hated Comey cuz of what he did to HRC? Today we hate Trump cuz Comey was going after the Russians? Crap I hate missing the 2 minute hate.

rmm

Anonymous , May 9, 2017 at 10:23 pm

I am no fan of Comey. I think his self-righteousness makes him a dangerous FBI Director and a loose cannon. However, people who think this is going to hurt Trump are likely wrong. If Trump knows there's nothing in the Russia story, but he continues to string out the Democrats with it, then they're the ones who are going to look foolish after having invested so much political capital in it. It may be the Russian story will be proven to be nonsense about October, 2018.

DJPS , May 9, 2017 at 11:02 pm

Since you can't prove a negative, the innuendo can continue ad nauseam.

John Wright , May 10, 2017 at 12:30 am

I suspect the Democrats are unaware they are indirectly insulting the Trump voters by the Russian influence story.. They are in effect saying Trump voters were played by the "evil" Russians into voting for Trump, despite the 1Billion spend by Clinton and her considerable support in the US media. I don't imagine the Trump voters like this message.

It is truly remarkable, the Russians spend about 10% of what the USA does on "Defense" and are able to influence a US electorate that is largely unaware and unconcerned about world affairs.

I believe enough voters know that Clinton played fast and loose with the email server to avoid FOIA and the Clinton Foundation pulled in a lot of money from foreign governments as payment in advance to President Hillary Clinton..

The harping on the "Russia influenced the election enough to elect Trump" will bite the Democrats as they avoid the jobs, medical and economic issues that actually influenced the voters for Trump.

If Trump indirectly destroys both the Democratic and Republican parties, he might rank as one of our more important Presidents, quite unintentionally.

Loblolly May 10, 2017 at 1:11 am

That would require us to be rational actors rather than the cartoon idiots the media portrays us as.

djrichard , May 10, 2017 at 1:25 am

I've taken to using doge speak in my comments on Yahoo articles and WaPo articles. I figure that's about as much intelligence the publishers are investing into the articles and into the audience, that I therefore tune my intelligence accordingly.

Kim Kaufman , May 9, 2017 at 10:41 pm

CNN exclusive: Grand jury subpoenas issued in FBI's Russia investigation

By Evan Perez, Shimon Prokupecz and Pamela Brown, CNN

http://www.cnn.com/2017/05/09/politics/grand-jury-fbi-russia/index.html

What seems to me to be most problematic for Flynn is not so much Russia but that he was getting paid by Turkey as a lobbyist while heading the NSA.

Art Eclectic , May 9, 2017 at 10:52 pm

Nice. Team Trump managed to get out ahead of that story with their own. That's some ninja level media mastery.

readerOfTeaLeaves , May 9, 2017 at 11:53 pm

The plot thickens.

juliania , May 9, 2017 at 11:04 pm

If it has to do with the Russian electorial witch hunt stupidity, then yes, I think Comey ought to have been fired. For crying out loud, enough already! Delicate matters are being attempted in the Middle East, and there is no sense in pursuing that craziness. I don't understand why that shouldn't be a perfectly acceptable reason to change direction and start attending to real issues with someone in the office who would support Trump's legitimate claim (and Putin's) that there was no there there.

Wrong Letters , May 9, 2017 at 11:12 pm

Why doesnt he fire the top 10 layers of CIA instead? They are wreaking havoc for real everywhere domestically and abroad.

Huey Long , May 10, 2017 at 1:26 am

I would imagine the CIA/Intel guys are way harder to get rid of. To quote the late, great Sen. Frank Church:

If this government ever became a tyranny, if a dictator ever took charge in this country, the technological capacity that the intelligence community has given the government could enable it to impose total tyranny, and there would be no way to fight back because the most careful effort to combine together in resistance to the government, no matter how privately it was done, is within the reach of the government to know. Such is the capability of this technology. ( )

Toolate , May 9, 2017 at 11:27 pm

So not one poster here thinks the Russia story has any merit whatsoever? With those odds, the contrarian in me says hmmm

Yves Smith Post author , May 10, 2017 at 12:31 am

Because people here are smart enough to be skeptical of hysterical MSM headlines with no real goods, you act as if you are some sort of smart contrarian, when you are just echoing a Democratic party/media narrative?

You do not seem to recognize that extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof. The idea that billionaire, who was already famous in the US by virtue (among other things) of having a TV show that ran for 14 years and got billions of free media coverage during his campaign, is somehow owned by Putin, is astonishing on its face. Trump had to have been the focus of extensive Republican and Democratic party opposition research while he was campaigning.

And perhaps most important, the night he won, Trump clearly did not expect to win. His longstanding friend Howard Stern stated a view similar to ours, that Trump ran because it would be good PR and the whole thing developed a life of its own. And before you try saying politics doesn't work that way, the UK is now on a path to Brexit for the same reasons.

All the Dems and the media have come up with are some kinda-sorta connections to Russia. Trump as a very rich man who also has assembled a large team of political types in short order, would have people who knew people in all corners of the world. "X has done business with Y" is hardly proof o of influence, particularly with a guy like Trump, who is now famous for telling people what they want to hear in a meeting and backstabbing them the next day.

We've been looking at this for months. The best they can come up with is:

1. Manafort, who worked for Trump for all of four months and was fired. Plus his Russia connections are mainly through Ukraine. Podesta has strong if not stronger Russia ties, is a much more central play to Clinton and no one is making a stink about that. And that's before you get to the Clinton involvement in a yuuge uranium sale to Russia, which even the New York Times confirmed (but wrote such a weedy story that you have to read carefully to see that).

2. Carter Page, who was even more peripheral

3. Flynn, again not a central player, plus it appears his bigger sin involved Turkey

4. The conversation with the Russian ambassador, which contrary to the screeching has plenty of precedent (in fact, Nixon and Reagan did far more serious meddling)

5. The various allegations re Trump real estate and bank loans. Trump did have a really seedy Russian involved in a NYC development. One should be more worried that the guy was a crook than that he was Russian. Third tier, not even remotely in the oligarch class. There are also vague allegations re money laundering. The is crap because first, every NYC real estate player has dirty money in high end projects (see the big expose by the New York Times on the Time Warner Center, developed by the Related Companies, owned by Steve Ross). But second, the party responsible for checking where the money came from, unless it was wheelbarrows of cash, is the bank, not the real estate owner. Since the NYT expose there have been efforts to make developers/owners responsible too, but those aren't germane to Trump since they aren't/weren't in effect.

So please do not provide no value added speculation. If you have something concrete, that would be interesting, but I've been looking and I've seen nothing of any substance.

Huey Long , May 10, 2017 at 1:07 am

+1 on the Time Warner Center

Very few condos there are occupied for more than a few days per year, and most of the residents I encountered during my tenure there were not US citizens.

We were all very entertained when the Times broke the story.

Just FYI, Ross does not own the TWC outright, he only has a stake in the place albeit a sizable one since aquiring TIme Warner's office/studio unit.

LT , May 10, 2017 at 1:50 am

Trump a crook, but not any other oligarchs? The old saying goes something like behind every great fortune is a great crime.

They clean up the image with a few rewrites and something like public office or foundations. The Presidency is Trump's ca-ching. And the pauses on the promises and the falling in line (bombs away!). He'll be right in the club.

George Phillies , May 10, 2017 at 12:40 am

Mr Comey also made some statements recently about Clinton emails and Mr Wiener, statements that seemed to be in need of significant reinterpretation. That might also have been the cause.

VietnamVet , May 10, 2017 at 12:56 am

Corporate Government messaging has fallen apart. The description of Anthony Weiner's laptop went from "explosive" to "careless but not criminal" to "just several" Clinton e-mails on it.

Democrats are generally supported by Wall Street, GOP by military contractors; but, together they are one war party. The new Saturday Night Massacre shows that with Donald Trump's triumph, the government has split apart into nationalist and globalist factions. No doubt the James Comey firing buries the Russian interference investigation. However, with the wars in Syria and Afghanistan re-surging; this episode shows that nothing the government says or the media reports is near the truth.

Loblolly , May 10, 2017 at 1:25 am

This is ostensibly the full memo from Deputy AG Rosenthal recommending the removal of Director Comey.

Link is to an imgur album consisting of three images.

<

[May 10, 2017] Trump Fires FBI Boss James Comey - Its About Time

Notable quotes:
"... But the political dimension of the dismissal is not about the Clinton email affair at all. It is about the "Russia interfered with the election" nonsense Clinton invented as excuse for her self-inflicted loss of the vote. The whole anti-Trump/anti-Russia campaign run by neocons and "Resistance" democrats, is designed to block the foreign policy - detente with Russia - for which Trump was elected. The anti-Russia inquisition is dangerous groupthink . ..."
"... He could have been sacked early on while the media's attention was focused on Trump's choices to fill the various Cabinet posts. ..."
"... It's likely the world will witness the POTUS get his wings clipped. Mr. Trump has never been confronted with existential adversity, his wealth has always protected him from that prospect. He is now captive in a golden cage of political power and has neither the personal experience, resources nor the capacity to conduct governance. Be prepared to watch Trump's Götterdämmerung. Put a fork in, Trump is done. ..."
"... Curiously I've come to the opposite conclusion: Hillary Clinton is done. Mark my words. ..."
"... This sort of stuff barely registers with me any more, since the one fact we can all rest assured isn't fakey is that long before an apparatchik such as Comey gets anywhere near the top trough, they will have been 'vetted' to ensure that they aren't the type of person to ever place principle ahead of self interest. ..."
"... But The Demorats -> Schumer in tears , Warren in war paint, et al and Snowden! - all have selective memories and are exceptional hypocrites. ..."
"... President Clinton today dismissed William S. Sessions, the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, who had stubbornly rejected an Administration ultimatum to resign six months after a harsh internal ethics report on his conduct. ..."
"... Who said it will make such a difference who sits in the FBI? A new guy will just show up saying the same stuff Comey have said. Just look at the new leaders at CIA, NSA, same warmongering hysterical stuff as under Obama. ..."
"... Fox News reporter Catherine Herridge says this is one of the biggest headlines out of the hearing today with the FBI director, pointing out that the FBI had found an email was obtained by Russian hackers that indicated that former DOJ hack Loretta Lynch would do everything she could to protect Hillary from prosecution: (VIDEO) ..."
"... Of course Comey wouldn't reveal who sent the email and to whom it was sent. But it sounds like it was sent from someone who worked closely with Lynch, and sent to someone who was very worried about Clinton going down in flames, probably someone very close to Clinton. At the end of the segment, Herridge pointed out that Comey suggested he was boxed in by Lynch and here is what she's talking about:[..] ..."
"... Reminds me of a little passage I read somewhere about a dish served cold. ..."
"... Some wonder why a guy like Trump, who made his bones telling people mano a mano that they were fired on prime time TV, wouldn't have picked up a phone to advise Comey he was done. Comey learned of his dismissal while giving a speech in LA. Presidential historian Douglas Brinkley says that was done so the president's people could access Comey's documents in his office while he was safely out of town. ..."
"... The assault on the wealth of the working classes will continue unabated. Mr. Trump is here to represent the wealthy elites, and is doing a fine job at that. Welcome to the new age of feudalism. ..."
"... Comey also gave immunity to 5 of Hillary's closest aids, including Huma. This insulated Hillary as these people could not be pressured to testify against her. ..."
"... Not to mention, jackrabbit, Hillary was never sworn in during her Saturday interview with the FBI. ..."
"... Trump fires Comey due to his political meddling but ... Trump won't prosecute Clinton about her email server. ..."
"... Clinton's Benghazi was treasonous covering up for Islamic terrorist/email means espionage not electronic mail/Clinton Foundation is treason for hire by the Secretary of State (who ruled America during the Great Interregnum when there was no President, 2009-2117, except when John Kerry was Secretary of State but it was still actually Clinton running things because everyone knows the Secretary of State doesn't make foreign policy) fake scandals were kept alive by Comey to intervene in the US election. (Whether it was his eager doing or he was pressured is irrelevant. ..."
"... Regarding "impromptu meeting b/w Clinton and Lynch on the tarmac", Comey was giving cover "to" Lynch, IMO. "no reasonable prosecutor". He was protecting the deal Lynch had already made with Clintons. ..."
"... Did you by chance listen/watch his testimony last week? If not, I recommend it as must watch especially after his being fired. He added more detail to the email investigation and his thinking at the time. ..."
"... The BBC running a live on Comey's end-of-contract?! Color revo any? Lavrov in Washington, guns for the Kurds, the US going for al-Nusra's head scalp... ..."
"... so treasonable Obama's scumbucket FBI director Comey gets fired. wowie zowie. nevermind the perjury, the obstruction of justice, the accessory to Clinton's sedition... ..."
"... Does Russia interfere in U.S. politics more than Israel does? ..."
"... Yes, caught part of the hearings. Just proved to me that deal was in stone before any tarmac meeting took place. And I bet Comey might not have even known Lynch would expose them so stupidly, how dumb was that. Did a FBI person leaked the meeting to the press?? ..."
"... I've been surprised that Russia doesn't release "white papers" that show what the NED and IRI have done including in places like Russia, Ukraine, and Georgia. ..."
May 10, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org
President Trump dismissed the Director of the FBI James Comey on recommendation of the Deputy Attorney General, who had served under Obama, and the Attorney General. The dismissal and the recommendation memos can be read here.

Comey is accused of usurping the Attorney General's authority on several occasions. In July 2016 Comey decided and publicly announced the closing of the Clinton email-investigations without a recommendation of prosecution. He publicly announced the reopening of the investigation in October only to close it again a few days later.

At the first closing of the investigation Comey held a press conference and said:

"our judgment is that no reasonable prosecutor would bring such a case."

That, by far, exceeded his competency, Since when can a police officer decide how "reasonable" a prosecutor may or may not be, and make public announcements about that? Clinton's running of a private email server broke several laws. Anyone but she would have been prosecuted at least for breaching secrecy and security regulations.

It is not the job of the police to decide about prosecutions. The police is an investigating agent of the public prosecutors office. It can make recommendations about prosecutions but not decide about them. Recommendations are to be kept confidential until they are decided upon by the relevant authority - the prosecutor. There are additional issues with Comey. His agents used sting or rather entrapment to lure many hapless idiots into committing "ISIS terror acts". A full two third of such acts in the U.S. would not have been though about without FBI help. Comey himself had signed off on Bush's warrantless wiretapping program.

The formal dismissal of Comey is, in my view, the right thing to do. It should have been done earlier.

But the political dimension of the dismissal is not about the Clinton email affair at all. It is about the "Russia interfered with the election" nonsense Clinton invented as excuse for her self-inflicted loss of the vote. The whole anti-Trump/anti-Russia campaign run by neocons and "Resistance" democrats, is designed to block the foreign policy - detente with Russia - for which Trump was elected. The anti-Russia inquisition is dangerous groupthink.

There is no evidence - none at all - that Russia "interfered" with the U.S. election. There is no evidence - none at all - that Russia colluded with the Trump campaign. The Democratic Senator Dianna Feinstein, who sits on the Judiciary Committee as well as the Select Committee on Intelligence, recently confirmed that publicly (vid) immediately after she had again been briefed by the CIA:

Blitzer mentioned that Feinstein and other colleagues from the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence had visited CIA headquarters on Tuesday to be briefed on the investigation. He then asked Feinstein whether she had evidence, without disclosing any classified information, that there was collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 presidential campaign.

"Not at this time," Feinstein said.

Jen | May 10, 2017 4:52:32 AM | 1
It would be interesting to know why James Comey was sacked now and not earlier before the "Russia interfered in the elections" narrative had much chance to damage Trump's presidency. He could have been sacked early on while the media's attention was focused on Trump's choices to fill the various Cabinet posts.
Formerly T-Bear | May 10, 2017 5:32:00 AM | 4
It's likely the world will witness the POTUS get his wings clipped. Mr. Trump has never been confronted with existential adversity, his wealth has always protected him from that prospect. He is now captive in a golden cage of political power and has neither the personal experience, resources nor the capacity to conduct governance. Be prepared to watch Trump's Götterdämmerung. Put a fork in, Trump is done.

Had Madam Clinton won the election, this would not have been possible. The organisation she headed would have taken immediate control of all available power bases and would not have created such opportunity for attack.

Quentin | May 10, 2017 5:53:23 AM | 5
@ 4

Curiously I've come to the opposite conclusion: Hillary Clinton is done. Mark my words.

Anon | May 10, 2017 5:59:52 AM | 6
The next one will be "Operation Gaslight ". The storyline will be that Trump is unstable and needs to be removed by his cabinet. Trumps many enemies will never stop. There is too much at stake.
Debsisdead | May 10, 2017 6:01:23 AM | 7
All this appointments soap opera is just distraction for the masses. The next appointee will just like Comey, do as he/she is told.

This sort of stuff barely registers with me any more, since the one fact we can all rest assured isn't fakey is that long before an apparatchik such as Comey gets anywhere near the top trough, they will have been 'vetted' to ensure that they aren't the type of person to ever place principle ahead of self interest.

If perchance there was any motive other than inspiring yet more vapid chatter, we can be equally certain that is not going to rate a mention from any of the hack pols or their media enablers until long after this storm in a teacup has subsided.

A | May 10, 2017 6:04:42 AM | 8
Put a fork in, Trump is done.

Out of curiosity: does anyone know the very first time this was said about Trump? I'm sure we can all agree this much though: don't hold your breath on it being the last time it's said about Trump..

likklemore | May 10, 2017 6:23:54 AM | 11
@FTB 4 and thank you A @ 8

I endorse b. Excellent.

Recall Trump was written off through the Primaries as he offed 16 candidates. In the election cycle down to the wire HRC had a 90% chance. Newsweek published edition cover page Madame President. (Dewey anyone?) I dislike that the Trump presidency is a family affair -- Jared Kushner will be the stick and fork; the second high profile firing that should have been done.

But The Demorats -> Schumer in tears , Warren in war paint, et al and Snowden! - all have selective memories and are exceptional hypocrites.

Flashback: New York Times - July 19, 1993 -> President William J. Clinton fires FBI Director

WASHINGTON, July 19- President Clinton today dismissed William S. Sessions, the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, who had stubbornly rejected an Administration ultimatum to resign six months after a harsh internal ethics report on his conduct.

Mr. Clinton said he would announce his nominee to replace Mr. Sessions on Tuesday. He was expected to pick Judge Louis J. Freeh of Federal District Court in Manhattan; officials said Judge Freeh had impressed Mr. Clinton favorably on Friday at their first meeting.

Mr. Clinton, explaining his reasons for removing Mr. Sessions, effective immediately, said, "We cannot have a leadership vacuum at an agency as important to the United States as the F.B.I. It is time that this difficult chapter in the agency's history is brought to a close." Defiant to the End

But in a parting news conference at F.B.I. headquarters after Mr. Clinton's announcement, a defiant Mr. Sessions -- his right arm in a sling as a result of a weekend fall -- railed at what he called the unfairness of his removal, which comes nearly six years into his 10-year term.

"Because of the scurrilous attacks on me and my wife of 42 years, it has been decided by others that I can no longer be as forceful as I need to be in leading the F.B.I. and carrying out my responsibilities to the bureau and the nation," he said. "It is because I believe in the principle of an independent F.B.I. that I have refused to voluntarily resign."

Mr. Clinton said that after reviewing Mr. Sessions's performance, Attorney General Janet Reno had advised him that Mr. Sessions should go. "After a thorough review by the Attorney General of Mr. Sessions's leadership of the F.B.I., she has reported to me in no uncertain terms that he can no longer effectively lead the bureau

Despite the President's severe tone, he seemed to regret having to force Mr. Sessions from his post. He said he had hoped that the issue could be settled at the Justice Department without the necessity of using his authority to dismiss the Director, who has a 10-year term but may be removed by the President at any time.

But Mr. Sessions's intransigence had festered into an awkward situation for Mr. Clinton.

A Republican stranded in a Democratic Administration, Mr. Sessions was appointed to head the F.B.I. by President Ronald Reagan in 1987 amid the turmoil of the Iran-contra affair. Mr. Sessions arrived as a respected judge from San Antonio, but after five and a half years in office, he leaves with his star fallen, his agency adrift and his support at the F.B.I. all but drained away. Troubled Tenure."[.]

in lieu of the "fake-news" rag content at the fly

Anon | May 10, 2017 6:47:39 AM | 13
Who said it will make such a difference who sits in the FBI? A new guy will just show up saying the same stuff Comey have said. Just look at the new leaders at CIA, NSA, same warmongering hysterical stuff as under Obama.

Trump has a bad temper and demonstrates erratic behavior, like Hillary. The handlers keep it covered up until they no longer keep it covered up. They let it slip that Hillary frequently blew up and used the F word vigorously as she berated her underlings (which are everyone including Clenis). Trump is, likewise, a genuine asshole. He's not faking that part.

Marko | May 10, 2017 7:30:14 AM | 16
If McCabe is next to go , as he should be , this could represent a significant swamp-draining accomplishment for Trump. Depending on who replaces them , of course.

The Rosenstein letter provided considerable legitimacy to Trump's move , considering the bipartisan support Rosenstein achieved. It wouldn't be a bad move for Trump to choose a replacement for Comey that comes with Rosenstein's strong endorsement. A Sessions endorsement would be about one-half as valuable.

jfl | May 10, 2017 7:46:50 AM | 17
did, 'All this appointments soap opera is just distraction for the masses. ... '

well, amend that to are pushed as a distraction for the masses and i'll certainly agree. there are so many levels at "arms' length" now that they're really just filling in the alibis for the 'historians' ... schlesinger types who'll connect all the dots once the deeds are done and show us the tragi-comedy in five acts. the masses are undistracted. people know it's all pure bullshit. that they're being played and sold down the river. it would be really great if we did something about it. just for the hell of it.

ProPeace | May 10, 2017 8:10:27 AM | 18
Interesting: Inside Trumps War with Robert David Steele

Also White House Petition for Unity Act Against the Deep State, Meeting with Ron Paul, Dennis Kucinich, Cynthia McKinney, & Robert Steele

Hoarsewhisperer | May 10, 2017 8:32:02 AM | 19
Obama and Hillary, however, addressed us in whole sentences and presented clearly structured concepts and arguments. Trump spits out 140-character tweets at us from the early hours of the morning.
I see a keen distinction there.
Posted by: ralphieboy | May 10, 2017 7:23:56 AM | 15

... forgetting, of course, that most politicians (and an only slightly smaller proportion of ordinary folks) start talking, or writing, or dialing, before they've decided precisely what they intend to say.Trump, and probably Putin, thinks before he communicates. And if the result isn't worth saying, he shuts up. Same as Putin.

Anon | May 10, 2017 8:34:53 AM | 20
ralphieboy

Then you are naive if you belive that Trump fire people through Twitter. Sure the stupid anti-Trump MSM want us to believe that.

likklemore | May 10, 2017 8:51:26 AM | 21
Marko @ 16

Agree. McCabe should follow Comey out the door. Patience grasshopper, one-at-a- time. If I were Hillary, (thank G-d for small mercies), after reading Rosenstein's Memo for the Attorney General, I 'd be lawyering up with my wet work gang.

This excerpt is a tell; confirming indeed there was some simmering mutiny within the FBI house. Judge Nap called it.

[..] As you and I have discussed, however, I cannot defend the Director's handling of the conclusion of the investigation of Secretary Clinton's emails, and I do not understand his refusal to accept nearly universal judgement that he was mistaken. Almost everyone agrees that the Director made serious mistakes; it is one of the few issues that unites people of diverse perspectives.[.]

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

full Memo deserves a re- read. OMG, someone is setting the table for dinner. Comey was cleaning the Clintons' cess-pool and he was helpfully assisted by the not so honorable, Obama's Attorney General, Lowrenta Lynch

Under-reported: May 03, 2017

Fox News reporter Catherine Herridge says this is one of the biggest headlines out of the hearing today with the FBI director, pointing out that the FBI had found an email was obtained by Russian hackers that indicated that former DOJ hack Loretta Lynch would do everything she could to protect Hillary from prosecution: (VIDEO)

Of course Comey wouldn't reveal who sent the email and to whom it was sent. But it sounds like it was sent from someone who worked closely with Lynch, and sent to someone who was very worried about Clinton going down in flames, probably someone very close to Clinton.
At the end of the segment, Herridge pointed out that Comey suggested he was boxed in by Lynch and here is what she's talking about:[..]

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

in the district of criminals, (aka D.C.), we find not only a swamp, but a few deep cess-pools.

Morongobill | May 10, 2017 9:19:59 AM | 22
Reminds me of a little passage I read somewhere about a dish served cold.
peter | May 10, 2017 9:49:52 AM | 23
So Trump includes in his firing letter that he appreciates the fact that Comey told him personally on three separate occasions that he was not the subject of investigation. What's that doing there?

Some wonder why a guy like Trump, who made his bones telling people mano a mano that they were fired on prime time TV, wouldn't have picked up a phone to advise Comey he was done. Comey learned of his dismissal while giving a speech in LA. Presidential historian Douglas Brinkley says that was done so the president's people could access Comey's documents in his office while he was safely out of town.

The Senate investigation just got started. This business about six months of investigation failing to produce a shred of evidence and therefore the whole matter should be dropped isn't going to fly. The same people who natter on about how we masses, like mushrooms kept in the dark and nurtured with bullshit, should disregard all this bafflegab about impropriety also say we should accept their conclusion that there's nothing to see here and that it's time to move on. That ain't happening.

Senator Al Franken, who's insipid alter-ego George Smiley on Saturday Night Live was the epitome of insecurity, has turned out to be a formidable poser of very tough questions to anyone unfortunate to be summoned before the senate panel. These senate guys don't fuck around and will not be stonewalled. We're in for some very interesting television.

BRF | May 10, 2017 10:00:13 AM | 25
Comey will land on his feet in some corporate gig, from whence he came. The only interesting aspect is whether or not his replacement will restore any smidgen of credibility to the FBI by acting on a basis of law or if the political games will continue. My guess would be that the plutocracy will see that their candidate is installed as FBI Director and at a minimum this person will remain at least neutral to the plutocracy's rule, silence being consent. That would be the big big silence on the Clinton criminality as it is intertwined with plutocratic rule. More of the same only more so as the FBI and co-conspirators keep the plot to assassinate any public leaders dusted off in case another Martin Luther King, another Occupy movement or some such should arise.
ben | May 10, 2017 10:46:59 AM | 26
DiD @ 7 said: "All this appointments soap opera is just distraction for the masses. The next appointee will just like Comey, do as he/she is told."

Well said, an IMO, absolutely spot on.

I think there are people above the Law, history proves that. HRC AND Mr. Trump are part of that group. I fully expect that nothing will happen to either. As DiD said, " A distraction for the masses( sheep)."

The assault on the wealth of the working classes will continue unabated. Mr. Trump is here to represent the wealthy elites, and is doing a fine job at that. Welcome to the new age of feudalism.

lysias | May 10, 2017 10:54:14 AM | 27
Was a weekend fall the real reason why William Sessions's arm was in a sling?
WorldBLee | May 10, 2017 11:21:16 AM | 29
The musical chairs show in Washington is meaningless. The Democrats hated Comey but now that he's fired they love him because they can use it to attack Trump. It's all political theatre and should be regarded as such. As others have said, another chump willing to take orders will replace Comey and will surely carry out the same bad policies at the FBI.
Circe | May 10, 2017 12:25:57 PM | 31
Trump was just in the Oval Office with that imperial criminal punk, Kissinger, ironically, Nixon's NSA and Trump blurted out that he fired Comey because he wasn't doing a good job.

The pot calling the kettle black is an understatement.

I don't give a damn one way or another who Trumpster fires; what I do give a damn about is abuse of power and manipulation of the truth and Trump is repeatedly guilty of both.

No such dictatorial power should ever again be vested in that position and in a person who is prone to exceed his competencies. And that's exactly how I would describe Herr Drumpf, danke!

Here's a great example of integrity. Try it sometime!:

https://twitter.com/Snowden/status/862069019301601281

https://twitter.com/Snowden/status/862067649748119553

Tinpot Trump:

https://theintercept.com/2017/05/10/after-james-comeys-firing-who-will-stop-trumps-tinpot-dictatorship/

This has nothing to do with Comey incompetence or the man himself. This is only about Trump abusing power as he's been doing since DAY ONE. He just took it to the next level...that's all!

Willy2 | May 10, 2017 12:44:39 PM | 32
- Wolf Blitzer was once employed by AIPAC.
- Comey simply stepped on too many (sensitive) toes, both Republican & Democratic. In that regard it was a matter of time that he was fired. It would have happened as well if Hillary Clinton had been elected to become the new president.
- But I also fear that a new FBI director (as appointed by one Jeff Sessions) will be as rightwing as one Jeff Sessions or even worse.
SlapHappy | May 10, 2017 1:12:56 PM | 33
@BRF #25

I'd add Aaron Swartz, Pat Tillman, and the DC Madam to the list of people who threatened the cabal and were assassinated for their efforts.

h | May 10, 2017 1:37:10 PM | 34
Great post, b, and likklemore, your comments are appreciated.

What is troubling to me with all of this is how politicized Obama's Cabinet/team became. It is becoming more and more obvious his appointments were made to serve him NOT the country and the public is witnessing the fallout from such authoritarian style of leadership.

Comey is both a victim and beneficiary of this politicization. His testimony last week was more forthcoming than in previous hearings, but what spoke volumes was his reaction to the impromptu meeting b/w Clinton and Lynch on the tarmac in Arizona. He suggested his concerns about Lynch being compromised regarding the Clinton email investigation were confirmed during that meeting while stating it was the last straw so to speak.

This pattern of politicization was obviously meant to continue under Hillary's leadership by cementing a permanent political class in DC who would serve the president rather than all of us outside of Washington. Some term this as the 'UniParty' - a majority of R and D's working in tandem to re orient DC machinations into a global governing body.

The neo's - libs and cons - are giddy over resigning the U.S. Constitution and the rest of America's founding papers into the trash heap of history. Their march toward globalization is hindered by those pesky documents. But what these globalists never counted on was a Trump win and, more importantly, conservatives gaining power in 28 states, six states shy of holding a Constitutional Convention.

Now that Hillary lost, Obama and team are pulling together an organizational structure to stave off wins in those six states while also trying to peel away those few who turned red in 2016.

This is the new political battleground - conservatives fighting for a constitutional convention and neo's fighting to remain relevant. With Comey being gone, and soon McCabe and et al, the FBI has a shot at shedding the politicization of the department and returning to its investigative roots.

This is the reason for Robby Mook's 'terrified' comment when learning of Comey's firing. He and his globalist cohorts should be concerned, but it's Hillary who really needs to be terrified.

From The Hague | May 10, 2017 1:37:54 PM | 35
#15 ralphieboy
Obama and Hillary, however, addressed us in whole sentences and presented clearly structured concepts and arguments.

Oh, that's your definition of lying and warmongering, idiot.

Jackrabbit | May 10, 2017 1:40:00 PM | 36
Comey also gave immunity to 5 of Hillary's closest aids, including Huma. This insulated Hillary as these people could not be pressured to testify against her.
h | May 10, 2017 1:46:44 PM | 37
Not to mention, jackrabbit, Hillary was never sworn in during her Saturday interview with the FBI.
Jackrabbit | May 10, 2017 1:54:06 PM | 38
Trump fires Comey due to his political meddling but ... Trump won't prosecute Clinton about her email server.
xor | May 10, 2017 2:07:46 PM | 41
I read that he was fired while giving some speech in Los Angeles or so and when he was asked to comment he thought it was a joke. Now that's funny!
Anon | May 10, 2017 2:09:54 PM | 42
Why is it such a big thing? Some people here seems to take talking points from neocon media. He was fired because Trump didnt have confidence in him, simply as that.
RUKidding | May 10, 2017 2:32:04 PM | 45
Not sad to see Comey go. I didn't think he was doing a good job, albeit he was put in a position where he had to tread carefully. I guess he did "ok" with that careful treading. Unsure of Trump's motivations to fire him but not that surprised. As others have posited here, Clinton would have done the same. Comey was probably at least partially prepared and possibly has a sinecure lined up as I type this.

IMO, this isn't the worst of Trump's alleged "offenses" by a long shot. It certainly does provide a distraction from all the other sh*t swirling around Trump, like Kushner selling US citizenships to high priced Chinese gangsters, like Trump's various cabinet picks arresting citizens for questioning them the "wrong way" or laughing at them, like Trump's decisions to ruin the environment and give away public lands to his rich pals, like the travesty of TrumpDon'tCare AHCA (which could end up even worse after the Senate gets done with it - No women on the Senate committee, just great).

Yes a nifty distraction while Trump and his plutocrat cronies rob us all blind. Duly noted the Democrats engage in their own dog 'n pony sideshow distractions re russia, Russia RUSSIA hysteria. All to avoid having to, you know, DO something about their own disaster of a corporate-bought-off "party" and avoid having to do one d*mn thing that benefits their traditional constituents, as opposed to ensuring that their Plutocratic masters are happy.

Like Comey's my biggest "concern" du jour... not.

steven t johnson | May 10, 2017 2:48:34 PM | 46
Every analysis of any current US political events that says anything about Clinton losing the election is deranged or dishonest. There are no exceptions.

Clinton's Benghazi was treasonous covering up for Islamic terrorist/email means espionage not electronic mail/Clinton Foundation is treason for hire by the Secretary of State (who ruled America during the Great Interregnum when there was no President, 2009-2117, except when John Kerry was Secretary of State but it was still actually Clinton running things because everyone knows the Secretary of State doesn't make foreign policy) fake scandals were kept alive by Comey to intervene in the US election. (Whether it was his eager doing or he was pressured is irrelevant.) The thing for Comey, and his natural human need to at least pretend to be a genuine human being, is, the Russia hacks the election is exactly the same kind of fake scandal, something arcane with dark, dark hints of treason! treason! Comey can't suddenly discover sanity when the BS is flying at Trump, after having vociferously claimed those were really Clark bars for the years prior.

The OP doesn't quite have the nerve to explain clearly how the supposed loser has the clout to make Comey dish on Trump. Or the effrontery to clearly avow Benghazi/email server/Clinton cash/pizzagate were all gospel. Nonetheless it is still Trumpery.

sl | May 10, 2017 3:39:47 PM | 49
@ h:

Regarding "impromptu meeting b/w Clinton and Lynch on the tarmac", Comey was giving cover "to" Lynch, IMO. "no reasonable prosecutor". He was protecting the deal Lynch had already made with Clintons.

Just read about Comey history with Clintons. He has been giving them cover a long time.

h | May 10, 2017 4:01:37 PM | 50
sl - Yep, I concur. And I think he had to protect whatever deal was agreed to b/w Lynch, Obama and Clinton. I'm not even sure I'd call it a deal, but rather an order. I'm sure if he didn't adhere there would have been some hefty consequences to pay.

Did you by chance listen/watch his testimony last week? If not, I recommend it as must watch especially after his being fired. He added more detail to the email investigation and his thinking at the time.

ProPeace | May 10, 2017 4:04:59 PM | 51
SlapHappy | May 10, 2017 1:12:56 Add to the long list:

Seth Rich, sen. Paul Wellstone, JFK jr, princess Diana, Michael Hastings, mysterious deaths of 9/11 witnesses, Phillip Marshall with family, Michael Connell, that policeman from the WTC 1993 bombing investigation, Clinton body count, that German press insider, Gary Webb ...

Mina | May 10, 2017 4:25:10 PM | 52
The BBC running a live on Comey's end-of-contract?! Color revo any? Lavrov in Washington, guns for the Kurds, the US going for al-Nusra's head scalp...
john | May 10, 2017 4:40:17 PM | 55
so treasonable Obama's scumbucket FBI director Comey gets fired. wowie zowie. nevermind the perjury, the obstruction of justice, the accessory to Clinton's sedition...

there's probably a multi-million dollar book deal in the pipeline. - Trump DOES have some very "interesting" connections to Russia and some shady Russian persons. But this is the result of his own "wheeling & dealing".

SlapHappy | May 10, 2017 5:04:12 PM | 60

Does Russia interfere in U.S. politics more than Israel does?
sl | May 10, 2017 5:09:13 PM | 61
@ h. Yes, caught part of the hearings. Just proved to me that deal was in stone before any tarmac meeting took place. And I bet Comey might not have even known Lynch would expose them so stupidly, how dumb was that. Did a FBI person leaked the meeting to the press??
h | May 10, 2017 7:14:03 PM | 66
Hey sl - here's a link to a post by RightScoop titled - FBI found email that Lynch would do everything she could to protect Hillary from CRIMINAL CHARGES - Catherine Herridge reported recently on this find - http://therightscoop.com/revealed-fbi-found-email-that-lynch-would-do-everything-she-could-to-protect-hillary-from-criminal-charges/

Yep, Rosenstein is a law man. I won't be the slightest bit surprised to learn Grand Jury indictments handed down sometime in the coming months for Hillary's arrest. Mr. Comey served as an obstacle to the DOJ to prosecute. Now that Sessions/Rosenstein, both law men, are heading the DOJ nothing will surprise me. Nothing.

Curtis | May 10, 2017 7:47:42 PM | 68
SlapHappy 60

Does Russia interfere in the elections and governing institutions of others as much as the US does?

I've been surprised that Russia doesn't release "white papers" that show what the NED and IRI have done including in places like Russia, Ukraine, and Georgia.

[May 10, 2017] Why Was Comey Fired by Philip Giraldi

It sounds like Hillary Clinton boxed Comey in – in more ways that just that the meeting Lynch had with Bill Clinton. If that new email is any indication, she very likely coerced him directly, pushing him to play the 'no intent' defense for Clinton and her aides.
Notable quotes:
"... The first is Comey's unprofessional handling of the Hillary Clinton email investigation, where he first decided not to prosecute her over the mishandling of classified information and then subsequently revealed to the public that the investigation had been reopened shortly before the election, possibly influencing the outcome. This is a serious matter, as Comey broke with precedent by going public with details of bureau investigations that normally are considered confidential. One might argue that it is certainly an odd assertion for the White House to be making, as the reopening of the investigation undoubtedly helped Trump, but it perhaps should be seen as an attempt to create some kind of bipartisan consensus about Comey having overreached by exposing bureau activities that might well have remained secret. ..."
"... As for the Russians, we are still waiting for the evidence demonstrating that Moscow intended to change the course of the U.S. election. Further investigation will likely not produce anything new, though it will undoubtedly result in considerable political spin to explain what we already know. It is unimaginable that Michael Flynn, for all his failings, agreed to work on behalf of Russian interests, while other names that have surfaced as being of interest in the case were hardly in a position to influence what the Trump administration might agree to do. There is no evidence of any Manchurian Candidate here. ..."
"... I am surprised that Dir. Comey didn't resign on his own terms after the election. The only other issue is it would have been less media convulsive and polite to allow him a graceful resignation and some departure time. ..."
May 10, 2017 | www.theamericanconservative.com
The statements by the White House and Sessions cite two issues. The first is Comey's unprofessional handling of the Hillary Clinton email investigation, where he first decided not to prosecute her over the mishandling of classified information and then subsequently revealed to the public that the investigation had been reopened shortly before the election, possibly influencing the outcome. This is a serious matter, as Comey broke with precedent by going public with details of bureau investigations that normally are considered confidential. One might argue that it is certainly an odd assertion for the White House to be making, as the reopening of the investigation undoubtedly helped Trump, but it perhaps should be seen as an attempt to create some kind of bipartisan consensus about Comey having overreached by exposing bureau activities that might well have remained secret.

The second issue raised by both Sessions and the White House is Comey's inability to "effectively lead the Bureau" given what has occurred since last summer. That is a legitimate concern. When the Clinton investigation was shelved, there was considerable dissent in the bureau, with many among the rank-and-file believing that the egregious mishandling of classified information should have some consequences even if Comey was correct that a prosecution would not produce a conviction.

And the handling of "Russiagate" also angered some experienced agents who believed that the reliance on electronic surveillance and information derived from intelligence agencies was the wrong way to go. Some called for questioning the Trump-campaign suspects who had surfaced in the initial phases of the investigation, a move that was vetoed by Comey and his team. It would be safe to say that FBI morale plummeted as a result, with many junior and mid-level officers leaving their jobs to exploit their security clearances in the lucrative government contractor business.

There has been considerable smoke about both the Clinton emails and the allegations of Russian interference in last year's election, but I suspect that there is relatively little fire. As Comey asserted, the attempt to convict a former secretary of state on charges of mishandling information without any ability to demonstrate intent would be a mistake and would ultimately fail. No additional investigation will change that reality.

As for the Russians, we are still waiting for the evidence demonstrating that Moscow intended to change the course of the U.S. election. Further investigation will likely not produce anything new, though it will undoubtedly result in considerable political spin to explain what we already know. It is unimaginable that Michael Flynn, for all his failings, agreed to work on behalf of Russian interests, while other names that have surfaced as being of interest in the case were hardly in a position to influence what the Trump administration might agree to do. There is no evidence of any Manchurian Candidate here.

I believe that the simplest explanation for the firing of Comey is the most likely: Donald Trump doesn't like him much and doesn't trust him at all. While it is convenient to believe that the FBI director operates independently from the politicians who run the country, the reality is that he or she works for the attorney general, who in turn works for the president. That is the chain of command, like it or not. Any U.S. president can insist on a national-security team that he is comfortable with, and if Trump is willing to take the heat from Congress and the media over the issue he certainly is entitled to do what he must to have someone he can work with at the FBI.

Philip Giraldi, a former CIA officer, is executive director of the Council for the National Interest.

Brian, May 10, 2017 at 10:39 am

Jul 7, 2016 Justice Vs. "Just Us": Of Course the FBI Let Hillary off the Hook. The only thing that surprises me is that anyone is surprised by this.

https://youtu.be/tmcox43ErRA

Investment Watch Blog

"Mr. Comey's appointment will be for an initial three-year term which, subject to re-election by shareholders, will expire at the conclusion of the 2016 Annual General Meeting."

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/feb/10/hillary-clinton-foundation-donors-hsbc-swiss-bank

"Clinton foundation received up to $81m from clients of controversial HSBC bank"

It's like a revolving door of money and special projects that the bank and the CF are involved in.

https://www.clintonfoundation.org/search/node/HSBC

EliteCommInc. May 10, 2017 at 11:38 am

" . . . but there was a certain inevitability about it given the bureau's clear inability to navigate the troubled political waters that developed early last summer and have continued ever since."

I am surprised that Dir. Comey didn't resign on his own terms after the election. The only other issue is it would have been less media convulsive and polite to allow him a graceful resignation and some departure time.

But that he is gone, I think he was surprised only by the manner certainly not the inevitability.

Blind sided by the manner certainly not the course.

Mark Thomason, May 10, 2017 at 12:06 pm

True. But it is also true that NOBODY likes Comey much or trusts him at all. He has no defenders.

Trump has attackers. That is very different. They'd attack him for anything he does, they attack every day. This outrage is only the latest, and will be repeated at every hint of opportunity.

Here they agree the guy needed to be fired and said themselves that Hillary was going to do it. But Trump did it, and that is the problem.

Kurt Gayle, May 10, 2017 at 12:46 pm

Please consider the that the explanation for the Comey firing is simpler:

(1) The Deputy Attorney-General is the FBI Director's boss.

(2) Trump's nominee for the position of Deputy Attorney-General, Rod Rosenstein, although nominated on January 13th, was only confirmed by the Senate on April 25th. Rosenstein took the oath of office the following day, Wednesday, April 26th, two weeks ago today.

(3) Immediately upon assuming his duties as the Justice Department official directly responsible for the FBI, Mr. Rosenstein determined that there were major problems concerning the FBI. Rosenstein reported his finding in a letter to his boss, Attorney-General Sessions:

(4) "Over the past year the FBI's reputation and credibility have suffered substantial damage, and it has affected the entire Department of Justice. That is deeply troubling to many Department employees and veterans, legislators and citizens."

(5) "The director was wrong to usurp the Attorney General's authority on July 5, 2016, and announce his conclusion that the case should be closed without prosecution. It is not the function of the Director to make such an announcement. At most, the Director should have said the FBI had completed its investigation and presented its findings to federal prosecutors."

(6) "Compounding the error, the Director ignored another longstanding principle: we do not hold press conferences to release derogatory information about the subject of a declined criminal investigation. Derogatory information sometimes is disclosed in the course of criminal investigations and prosecutions, but we never release it gratuitously "

(7) "The goal of a federal criminal investigation is not to announce our thoughts at a press conference. The goal is to determine whether there is sufficient evidence to justify a federal criminal prosecution, then allow a federal prosecutor who exercises authority delegated by the Attorney General to make a prosecutorial decision, and then – if prosecution is warranted – let the judge and jury determine the facts."

(8) "Concerning his letter to the Congress on October 28, 2016, the Director cast his decision as a choice between whether he would 'speak' about the FBI's decision to investigate the newly-discovered email messages or 'conceal' it. 'Conceal' is a loaded term that misstates the issue. When federal agents and prosecutors quietly open a criminal investigation, we are not concealing anything; we are simply following the longstanding policy that we refrain from publicizing non-public information. In that context, silence is not concealment."

(9) "My perspective on these issues is shared by former Attorneys General and Deputy Attorneys General from different eras and both political parties."

(10) "I agree with the nearly unanimous opinions of former Department officials. The way the Director handled the conclusion of the email investigation was wrong. As a result, the FBI is unlikely to regain public and congressional trust until it has a Director who understands the gravity of the mistakes and pledges never to repeat them. Having refused to admit his errors, the Director cannot be expected to implement the necessary corrective actions."

With respect to Deputy Attorney-General Rosenstein's heading of the investigation into possible Russian interference in the November election, the fact that Mr. Rosenstein would head the investigation (Attorney-General Sessions having recused himself) was known to the Senate - and the Senate committee questioned him on his views on the matter - for a full week before the Senate confirmed Mr. Rosenstein by a 94-6 vote.

MM, May 10, 2017 at 1:00 pm

I'm pleased to see this vociferous call by high-level Democratic officials for a U.S. Independent Counsel to investigate this matter. It's a relief that these same officials are taking this stance from a position of principled consistency, as they were the loudest in calling for independent investigations of the previous administration's questionable activities.

For example: NSA mass domestic surveillance, gun-running and associated false statements to Congress, IRS targeting of conservative groups, and influence peddling in the State Department under Secretary Clinton, all of which the Justice Department at the time was either directly involved in or responsible for burying any serious inquiries

Ellimist000, May 10, 2017 at 2:55 pm

MM,

"NSA mass domestic surveillance, gun-running and associated false statements to Congress, IRS targeting of conservative groups, and influence peddling in the State Department under Secretary Clinton "

You're not wrong, but the reason nothing happened was that stuff of this nature has gone on from both sides since the Cold War started (different names and techniques, of course). If you really wanted the Dems to suddenly see the light, under the 1st black president no less, then I hope you are awaiting the GOP's ethics censure on Trump with great anticipation

Otto Zeit, May 10, 2017 at 4:02 pm

What baffles me is, why would the Democrats want the "Russiagate" inquiry to be left in the hands of a man who has already shown himself to be blown by the winds of political partisanship?

MM, May 10, 2017 at 4:17 pm

Ellimist000,

I'd love to see any President censured by Congress, for anything, especially by his or her own party. But even that won't cause the Hypocritical Old Party to see the light. The universal philosophy in a 2-party system like this one is to 1) never admit any wrongdoing of one's own nor hold any objective ethical standard of behavior; and 2) declare the other party pure evil, all the time.

[Jan 14, 2017] Comey Letter on Clinton Email Is Subject of Justice Dept. Inquiry

NYT tries to hide one interesting nuance: whether emails in Huma computer contained the set of emails deleted by Hillary from her.
Notable quotes:
"... The inspector general's office said that it was initiating the investigation in response to complaints from members of Congress and the public about actions by the F.B.I. and the Justice Department during the campaign that could be seen as politically motivated. ..."
"... Republicans, who made her use of a private email server a centerpiece of their campaign against Mrs. Clinton, attacked Mr. Comey after he decided there was not sufficient evidence she had mishandled classified information to prosecute her. ..."
"... In the end, the emails that the F.B.I. reviewed - which came up during an unrelated inquiry into Anthony D. Weiner, the estranged husband of a top Clinton aide, Huma Abedin - proved irrelevant to the investigation's outcome. ..."
"... Inspectors general have investigated F.B.I. directors before, but rarely. The most high-profile example was the investigation of William S. Sessions, who was fired by President Bill Clinton after an internal inquiry cited him for financial misconduct. In recent years, the inspector general has investigated accusations of wrongdoing by the F.B.I. involving some of its most sensitive operations, including a number of surveillance and counterterrorism programs. ..."
"... Mr. Horowitz said he would also investigate whether the Justice Department's top congressional liaison, Peter Kadzik, had improperly provided information to the Clinton campaign. A hacked email posted by WikiLeaks showed that Mr. Kadzik alerted the campaign about a coming congressional hearing that was likely to raise questions about Mrs. Clinton. ..."
"... Investigators will be helped in gathering evidence by a law that Congress passed just last month, which ensures that inspectors general across the government will have access to all relevant agency records in their reviews. ..."
"... Mr. Trump has not indicated whether he intends to keep Mr. Comey in his job. When he cleared Mrs. Clinton of criminal wrongdoing during the campaign, Mr. Trump accused him of being part of a rigged system. ..."
Jan 14, 2017 | economistsview.typepad.com

Peter K. : January 13, 2017 at 06:17 AM

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/12/us/politics/james-comey-fbi-inspector-general-hillary-clinton.html

Comey Letter on Clinton Email Is Subject of Justice Dept. Inquiry

By ADAM GOLDMAN, ERIC LICHTBLAU and MATT APUZZO
JAN. 12, 2017

WASHINGTON - The Justice Department's inspector general said Thursday that he would open a broad investigation into how the F.B.I. director, James B. Comey, handled the case over Hillary Clinton's emails, including his decision to discuss it at a news conference and to disclose 11 days before the election that he had new information that could lead him to reopen it.

The inspector general, Michael E. Horowitz, will not look into the decision not to prosecute Mrs. Clinton or her aides. But he will review actions Mr. Comey took that Mrs. Clinton and many of her supporters believe cost her the election.

They are: the news conference in July at which he announced he was not indicting Mrs. Clinton but described her behavior as "extremely careless"; the letter to Congress in late October in which he said that newly discovered emails could potentially change the outcome of the F.B.I.'s investigation; and the letter three days before the election in which he said that he was closing it again.

The inspector general's office said that it was initiating the investigation in response to complaints from members of Congress and the public about actions by the F.B.I. and the Justice Department during the campaign that could be seen as politically motivated.

For Mr. Comey and the agency he heads, the Clinton investigation was politically fraught from the moment the F.B.I. received a referral in July 2015 to determine whether Mrs. Clinton and her aides had mishandled classified information. Senior F.B.I. officials believed there was never going to be a good outcome, since it put them in the middle of a bitterly partisan issue.

Whatever the decision on whether to charge Mrs. Clinton with a crime, Mr. Comey, a Republican former Justice Department official appointed by President Obama, was going to get hammered. And he was.

Republicans, who made her use of a private email server a centerpiece of their campaign against Mrs. Clinton, attacked Mr. Comey after he decided there was not sufficient evidence she had mishandled classified information to prosecute her.

The Clinton campaign believed the F.B.I. investigation was overblown and seriously damaged her chances to win the White House and resented Mr. Comey's comments about Mrs. Clinton at his news conference. But the campaign was particularly upset about Mr. Comey's two letters, which created a wave of damaging news stories at the end of the campaign, when Mrs. Clinton and her supporters thought they had put the email issue behind them.

In the end, the emails that the F.B.I. reviewed - which came up during an unrelated inquiry into Anthony D. Weiner, the estranged husband of a top Clinton aide, Huma Abedin - proved irrelevant to the investigation's outcome.

The Clinton campaign said Mr. Comey's actions quite likely caused a significant number of undecided voters to cast ballots for President-elect Donald J. Trump.

F.B.I. officials said Thursday that they welcomed the scrutiny. In a statement, Mr. Comey described Mr. Horowitz as "professional and independent" and promised to cooperate with his investigation. "I hope very much he is able to share his conclusions and observations with the public because everyone will benefit from thoughtful evaluation and transparency," Mr. Comey said.

Brian Fallon, the former press secretary for the Clinton campaign and the former top spokesman for the Justice Department, said the inspector general's investigation was long overdue.

"This is highly encouraging and to be expected, given Director Comey's drastic deviation from Justice Department protocol," he said. "A probe of this sort, however long it takes to conduct, is utterly necessary in order to take the first step to restore the F.B.I.'s reputation as a nonpartisan institution."

Mr. Horowitz has the authority to recommend a criminal investigation if he finds evidence of illegality, but there has been no suggestion that Mr. Comey's actions were unlawful. Rather, the question has been whether he acted inappropriately, showed bad judgment or violated Justice Department guidelines. It is not clear what the consequences would be for Mr. Comey if he was found to have done any of those things.

The Justice Department and the F.B.I. have a longstanding policy against discussing criminal investigations. Another Justice Department policy declares that politics should play no role in investigative decisions. Both Democratic and Republican administrations have interpreted that policy broadly to prohibit taking any steps that might even hint at an impression of partisanship.

Inspectors general have investigated F.B.I. directors before, but rarely. The most high-profile example was the investigation of William S. Sessions, who was fired by President Bill Clinton after an internal inquiry cited him for financial misconduct. In recent years, the inspector general has investigated accusations of wrongdoing by the F.B.I. involving some of its most sensitive operations, including a number of surveillance and counterterrorism programs.

As part of the review, the inspector general will examine other issues related to the email investigation that Republicans have raised. They include whether the deputy director of the F.B.I., Andrew G. McCabe, should have recused himself from any involvement in it.

In 2015, Mr. McCabe's wife ran for a State Senate seat in Virginia as a Democrat and accepted nearly $500,000 in political contributions from Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a key ally of the Clintons. Though Mr. McCabe did not assume his post until February 2016, months after his wife was defeated, critics both within the agency and outside of it felt that he should have recused himself.

The F.B.I. has said Mr. McCabe played no role in his wife's campaign. He also told his superiors she was running and sought ethics advice from F.B.I. officials.

Mr. Horowitz said he would also investigate whether the Justice Department's top congressional liaison, Peter Kadzik, had improperly provided information to the Clinton campaign. A hacked email posted by WikiLeaks showed that Mr. Kadzik alerted the campaign about a coming congressional hearing that was likely to raise questions about Mrs. Clinton.

Investigators will be helped in gathering evidence by a law that Congress passed just last month, which ensures that inspectors general across the government will have access to all relevant agency records in their reviews.

The law grew out of skirmishes between the F.B.I. and the Justice Department inspector general over attempts by the F.B.I. to keep grand jury material and other records off limits. The new law means Mr. Horowitz's investigators should have access to any records deemed relevant.

Mr. Trump has not indicated whether he intends to keep Mr. Comey in his job. When he cleared Mrs. Clinton of criminal wrongdoing during the campaign, Mr. Trump accused him of being part of a rigged system.

Although the president does not need cause to fire the F.B.I. director, a critical inspector general report could provide justification to do so if Mr. Trump is looking for some.

[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 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.

[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.

[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 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.

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