Did Comey Just Hand Trump the Election?
Ah, the cesspool that we all know as Washington. After listening to FBI Director Comey’s briefing yesterday where he said he was not recommending charges be pressed, reading through the complete transcript and then eviscerating him falling for political intimidation, I’m stepping back now and wondering if Comey doesn’t have a Machiavellian side to him.
If we accept for a moment that Comey is a “straight arrow” and is a man of “integrity,” as his friends and colleagues refer to him, then the first question that comes to mind is how can he not recommend at least a grand jury based upon the evidence that he has. After all, he did detail quite succinctly the evidence the FBI found that that refuted so much of what the Clinton meme has been since March 2015 — that Clinton did, in fact, send and receive classified documents on an unsecured servers, (make that plural) and then fully lied about it for months.
However, while Comey may well be that straight arrow, he’s also not stupid. He doesn’t hold the position of FBI Director only because of his record and integrity, but because he can also read the political tea leaves. He knows the iron-clad evidence that he has, as well as the circumstantial evidence that could be spun into innuendo by the Clinton attack machine, which has wreaked havoc with countless lives.
Comey had to weigh the impact of recommending indictment of Clinton, and then possibly having that recommendation stalled for months by the DOJ as the evidence would be “under review.” From the President’s first 60 Minutes interview on the subject, the signal was sent, and then resent over the last two weeks. The politicized DOJ most likely kept the White House and Lynch informed of exactly the kind of evidence the FBI had, which is why Clinton visited Lynch on her plane, and Obama sent word of his campaigning with Hillary in the key swing state of North Carolina.
So what were Comey’s options? Do the right thing, indict, and then watch his FBI’s year-long investigation be dragged through the mud and characterized/politicized as a witch hunt, with the names and reputations of many of his agents tarnished and skewered. Or, would he try and beat the Clintons at their own game. He, himself, would take the blame for a non-indictment, but he would do it his own way. He would detail the FBI’s findings that refuted all of Hillary’s months and months of comments captured on video, showing her to be the corrupt liar, who was responsible for more than likely endangering US national security.
“We do assess that hostile actors gained access to the private commercial e-mail accounts of people with whom Secretary Clinton was in regular contact from her personal account. We also assess that Secretary Clinton’s use of a personal e-mail domain was both known by a large number of people and readily apparent. She also used her personal e-mail extensively while outside the United States, including sending and receiving work-related e-mails in the territory of sophisticated adversaries. Given that combination of factors, we assess it is possible that hostile actors gained access to Secretary Clinton’s personal e-mail account.”
And then finally, probably Comey’s most pointed comment:
“To be clear, this is not to suggest that in similar circumstances, a person who engaged in this activity would face no consequences. To the contrary, those individuals are often subject to security or administrative sanctions.”
We have Comey throwing down the gauntlet to the voters. He’s basically said, ‘We (FBI) know that Hillary is guilty, but we also know that we can’t touch her because she’s ‘protected.’ In November, it’s up to you voters do the work that the FBI can’t do and the DOJ won’t do.’
Yes, in November, we’ll see who has the last laugh, or tears.