Comey broke from Federal Bureau of Investigation procedures in Clinton probe, watchdog finds

15 June, 2018, 04:32 | Author: Bert Pena
  • Comey 'deviated' from standard procedure in Clinton probe, report finds; Trump responds

Hillary Clinton's email scandal dominated the coverage of her 2016 campaign for president, even though no criminal wrongdoing was ever uncovered after a thorough investigation.

I am alarmed, angered, and deeply disappointed by the Inspector General's finding of numerous failures by DOJ and FBI in investigating potential Espionage Act violations by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Comey also wrote an opinion piece in The New York Times responding to the report's findings.

Horowitz said Comey should have sought approval from senior Justice Department officials before announcing in July 2016 that while Clinton's decision to keep a private email server at her home was "extremely careless", he did not recommend charges against her.

He especially criticized an August 2016 text message exchange where Peter Strzok, an investigator for both the probes into Hillary Clinton's emails and Russian meddling in the 2016 election, tells Federal Bureau of Investigation lawyer Lisa Page "we'll stop" Trump from winning the White House.

Newly discovered text exchanges between two officials working on the Clinton email investigation suggests an attempt to stop then-candidate Donald Trump from becoming president.

The report also includes previously unreported text messages between two FBI officials, Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, who privately criticized Trump and previously worked on the bureau's Russian Federation investigation.

In messages exchanged on November 9, 2016 and documented starting on page 417 of the report, FBI Attorney 2 and other FBI employees discuss their distress over the results of the presidential election and insult Trump supporters.

Strzok responded, "I'm not anxious about them".

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The White House said the report confirmed Mr Trump's "suspicions" about Mr Comey and about the "political bias among some of the members of the FBI".

Horowitz's investigation concluded that Comey's actions damaged the FBI's image of being impartial and not motivated by politics.

The IG report strongly criticizes the decision. "And nothing in the inspector general's report makes me think we did the wrong thing".

"I respect the DOJ IG office, which is why I urged them to do this review", Comey tweeted following the news.

Despite being able to track the number of times agents communicated with reporters, the IG cites two reasons for being unable to identify individual leakers. The report also noted that once McCabe did officially step back from all Clinton-related probes on November 1, 2016, he "did not fully comply with his recusal in a few instances".

The FBI obtained a warrant nine days before the presidential election to review those emails, found on the laptop of former Rep. Anthony Weiner, and ultimately determined there was nothing in them that changed its original conclusion.

The inspector general's conclusions were viewed through a political lens and seen by most Republicans as somewhat helpful in uncovering evidence, but little more than that.

The inspector general's inquiry has focused on public statements made by Comey about Democrat Clinton's use of a private email server, instead of a State Department server, while she was secretary of state.

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