The Strategist

Clinton's emails: new Watergate or great commotion about nothing?


10/31/2016 - 13:24



Presidential race in the United States is nearing the finish line, yet keeps surprising even most imperturbable observers. Federal Bureau of Investigation has brought back a case with official e-mails of Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton. The correspondence relates to times of her tenure in the State Department.



Gage Skidmore
Gage Skidmore
Public was surprised to learn that the FBI once again dove in clarifying circumstances under which the former secretary of state used personal mail server instead of a secured government one. After all, Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation James Comey himself previously admitted that thorough examination found no reasons to initiate a criminal case against the ex-secretary of state.

Resumption of the investigation was announced by congressional Republicans, who previously have made some efforts to make the scandal public. James Comey notified Heads of a number of committees that "during investigation in another case, the FBI learned of existence of e-mails, which are likely to be associated with the investigation" in respect of the Democratic candidate. As The New York Times found out, Head of the FBI meant writings of the former secretary of state’s assistant Huma Abedin and her husband Anthony Weiner. At the same time, official representatives gave no information. Even the State Department learned about everything from the journalists.

Meanwhile, The Washington Post and USA Today dug up some interesting details, like, for example, the fact that the FBI’s Director is acting on his own. This was disclosed after James Comey has notified the US Ministry of Justice, in charge of his department, on his intention to report discovery of new letters to Congress. "FBI Director independently decided to inform the Congress. He is acting irrespective of the Department of Justice" - confided sources of The Washington Post.

James Comey was previously a member of the Republican Party. This fact may give rise to conspiracy theories that he decided to try to help Donald Trump in exchange for a possible position in the new administration.

However, the reality is likely to be much easier. Newly emerged e-mails would have become public anyhow. If the FBI tried to go down this path, it could be accused of bias and attempts to hide the truth from the public. Credibility of the agency and its director James Comey would have suffered a heavy blow.

Meanwhile, Mrs. Clinton's headquarters decided to launch an offensive. The former Secretary of State, supported by Vice-President Joseph Biden, demanded to make all the new facts public. Mrs. Clinton termed the incident as "unprecedented", and accused the FBI in hesitating to immediately provide all the information. Democrats are exploding with indignation at the bare mention of James Comey.

Democratic senators said they needed to receive an explanation before October 31. They wrote a letter to James Comey, where they asked to specify whether the fuss is about new messages, or the old ones.

As expected, Donald Trump took up this topic at his rallies, saying that the scandal is louder than the "Watergate". According to a recent poll of ABC News/Washington Post, Mr. Trump managed to reduce the gap between him and his rival by 1%. 

source: washingtonpost.com, usatoday.com, nytimes.com




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