Well, the campaign to make the FBI look like they’re bed with the Donald Trump campaign continues, with this piece from Abigail Tracy of Vanity Fair, who asks if the bureau went “full Breitbart” in their investigation of the Clinton Foundation. Why? Well, from reports, it appears as if the book Clinton Cash, which was written by Breitbart editor-at-large Peter Schweizer, was used as a source of evidence in their probe into the nonprofit, which many allege is guilty of a variety of unethical and conflict of interests dealings, especially when Hillary was secretary of state.
On Thursday, the Journal reported that last summer, shortly after Clinton Cash was published, a number of F.B.I. agents began investigating claims made against the Clinton Foundation in the book, ultimately prompting an internal battle between the agents and F.B.I. and Justice Department officials. The agents secretly recorded conversations with two informants—both of whom were involved in separate public-corruption investigations—about the Clinton Foundation, and believed that they had enough evidence to build a case. Senior officials in the F.B.I. and the Justice Department, however, were skeptical of the evidence and the primary source, Schweizer’s book. Public-integrity prosecutors reportedly “weren’t impressed” and “thought the talk was hearsay and a weak basis to warrant aggressive tactics, like presenting evidence to a grand jury, because the person who was secretly recorded wasn’t inside the Clinton Foundation,” according to the Journal’s report.
Despite a questionable source and orders from the Justice Department and senior F.B.I. officials to “stand down,” F.B.I. agents reportedly continued to investigate the Clinton Foundation. The Journal reports that the dispute reached a fever pitch on August 12, when a Justice Department official called the deputy director of the F.B.I., Andrew McCabe, to complain about the agents’ continued inquiry, prompting him to ask, “Are you telling me that I need to shut down a validly predicated investigation?” to which the official replied, “Of course not.” The F.B.I. agents, meanwhile, were reportedly furious that leadership seemed to be trying to rein them in…
The implications of an increasingly partisan F.B.I. are deeply troublesome. If Clinton becomes president, the bureau will likely become the primary tool of Republicans seeking to investigate her. The word “impeachment” is already on the lips of several lawmakers eager to resurrect the scandal-driven Clinton mania of the late 1990s. And if Trump becomes president, he may find in the bureau an army of sympathetic law enforcement officers ready to assist his political agenda—or vendetta, as the case may be. During interviews with The Guardian, published Thursday, a number of F.B.I. agents described an intensely anti-Clinton atmosphere at the F.B.I., with one characterizing it as “Trumpland.” Clinton, the agent said, is seen as “the antichrist personified” to many people within the bureau, and “the reason why they’re leaking is they’re pro-Trump.”
Yes, there is no direct evidence, but there are peculiar incidents when money has been given to the Clinton Foundation and good things happen to those donors, economically-speaking, somewhere down the timeline.
For example, Clinton was opposed to the Colombia Free Trade Agreement in 2008. Once Obama won the presidential election (he was against it too), and Clinton was secretary of state, a Canadian financier named Frank Giustra, who owned the energy company Pacific Rubiales, gave millions to the foundation through his company. He also personally wrote checks to the foundation. Rubiales was at the center of the controversy surrounding the country’s alleged intimidation of workers’ rights, which was one of the reasons why Democrats opposed the agreement. In the end, Clinton did a 180-degree turn on her opposition, the deal was approved, and Giustra eventually put on the Clinton Foundation’s board of directors.
Okay, here’s another example. It involves the sale of a mining company that had strategic value to the U.S. concerning uranium production. The Canadian mining company Uranium One was in the process of being bought by a Russian government corporation called Rosatom. The chairman of Uranium One at the time gave over $2 million from his charity to the Clinton Foundation; a Russian bank selling Uranium One stock paid Bill $500,000. Since the sale dealt with something in the U.S.’ national security interest, the Council on Foreign Investment, in which Clinton is one of the principals, were asked the review the deal. It went through, and Russians got closer to controlling the world’s uranium production, one-fifth of it in the U.S. alone, according to The New York Times.
Mr. Clinton, for example, collected $1 million for two appearances sponsored by the Abu Dhabi government that were arranged while Mrs. Clinton was secretary of state. His speeches there came during and after the State Department and the Department of Homeland Security were involved in discussions about a plan to open a U.S. facility in the Abu Dhabi airport to ease visa processing for travel to the U.S. The State Department supported the facility in the face of substantial opposition from unions, members of Congress and others.
The State Department got involved in the Abu Dhabi matter after the capital of the United Arab Emirates asked for a facility to clear travelers for U.S. entry before they boarded planes so they could avoid delays when arriving in the U.S. Only five countries in the world at the time had such an arrangement: Canada, Ireland and three Caribbean countries.
According to two former State Department officials who worked on the matter, the U.S. wanted to help an important ally. Mrs. Clinton’s spokesman said it was “a continuation of a Bush administration initiative to expand preclearance conducted abroad,” and that the Department of Homeland Security led negotiations.
U.S.-based airlines, which have no direct flights between Abu Dhabi and the U.S., opposed the idea as a giveaway to the government-owned airline, Etihad Airways. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the AFL-CIO and unions for pilots and flight attendants opposed it. More than 150 lawmakers from both parties ultimately opposed it.
While Mrs. Clinton’s State Department and the Department of Homeland Security were working out a “letter of intent” with Abu Dhabi for the facility, Mr. Clinton sought permission to give a paid speech in Abu Dhabi. The invitation came from the Abu Dhabi Global Environmental Data Initiative, a group created by Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, president of the United Arab Emirates and emir of Abu Dhabi, according to Mr. Clinton’s request to the State Department.
On Dec. 6, 2011, U.S. officials signed the letter of intent. One week later, Mr. Clinton gave a 20-minute talk on climate change to the Abu Dhabi government environmental gathering. He collected $500,000, his wife’s disclosure report shows.
In December 2012, Mr. Clinton sought approval for another speech in Abu Dhabi before the World Travel and Tourism Council, State Department emails show. The request said the speech was sponsored by three Abu Dhabi tourism agencies, all owned by the government. A conference sponsor was Etihad Airways, the chief beneficiary of the inspection facility, the group’s promotional materials said. An Etihad spokeswoman referred questions about the facility to the government of Abu Dhabi.
Mr. Clinton gave a keynote address on the value of tourism. He was paid $500,000, his wife’s disclosure filings say.
One week later, the U.S. and Abu Dhabi signed the final agreement for the facility. Etihad Airways operated its first flight from it last year.
There’s also the list of nations with terrible human rights records that gave millions to the Clinton Foundation, only to receive billions in arms deals, much more than under the Bush administration.
It may be that the FBI is “Trumpland”; we don’t know—and the source for that piece is the unabashedly left wing Guardian newspaper. There is no evidence to show that active FBI agents are in cahoots with Trump. The big thing Democrats are throwing a tantrum about is Rudy Giuliani’s less than subtle admission that he knew FBI Director James Comey was going to inform Congress that he found 650,000 Clinton-related emails from Hillary aide Huma Abedin. Yet, Giuliani did say that he only got that information from inactive FBI agents. Again, I refer you to Mr. Morrissey over at Hot Air who wrote how this charge that the FBI gave the Trump campaign a heads up about the Comey letter is nonsense.
Despite the Schweizer book, there are plenty of other incidents that should raise the eyes of authorities. Guy wrote yesterday that the country of Qatar gave the Clinton Foundation an undisclosed $1 million donation when Hillary was secretary of state. The Wikileaks dump that revealed a 13-page memo from top Bill Clinton aide Doug Band on how they can raise money from top donors for the Clinton Foundation, while also forging some relationships that could lead to consulting gigs and paid speaking engagements. All of this occurred while Hillary was secretary of state. The Wall Street Journal asked why isn’t the IRS investigating the Clinton Foundation for violating their nonprofit status. And MSNBC’s Morning Joe tore into this memo, and the Clintons, as being nothing but sleazy. Host Joe Scarborough described it as a $66 million shakedown. There’s certainly enough to warrant an investigation. The FBI isn’t going full Breitbart; they’re doing their job. Just because it’s related to a matter that casts the Clintons in a negative light doesn’t mean partisan politics are at play here. We know it’s not because Comey was beloved by the Left and the Democrats last July. And Democrats, this is what happens when you nominate someone who is under a criminal investigation.