A change of pace from the Democrats' full-court-press damage control spin, which seeks to blame FBI Director James Comey for having the temerity to inform Congress of his agency's decision to revisit Hillary Clinton's email probe, in light of newly-discovered information. At the behest of the Clinton campaign, a slew of former DOJ and federal law enforcement officials have come forward to voice their displeasure with Comey's call (which sources say he fully stands behind), and the obviously servile mainstream media has been running heavily with their preferred narrative:
Mainstream media meltdown! Big 3 networks turn Clinton scandal story into a Comey scandal story pic.twitter.com/fRhC4kCVNH— FOX & Friends (@foxandfriends) November 1, 2016
In this case, partisan reaction to the story became the story, as opposed to the actual story -- namely, that Mrs. Clinton's closest aide apparently failed to turn over a laptop computer full of tens of thousands of emails that were routed through Hillary's unsecure, improper, national security-compromising server. And that federal agents only stumbled upon this new evidence while in the process of investigating a former Democratic Congressman's sexts with underage girls. Despite the hue and cry against Comey for doing his job (the "unprecedented" line is garbage, as we established on Sunday), the faux outrage against him is not shared by many relevant officials. Former US Attorney General William Barr has penned a Washington Post op/ed strongly defending the FBI Director's decision:
The continuing refrain from Hillary Clinton supporters and other observers that FBI Director James B. Comey’s action was “contrary” to Justice Department policy is flatly wrong. Given the particular circumstances facing Comey, it is absurd. While I do not agree with everything done and said over the summer in connection with the email investigation, I think that, last week, Comey had no choice but to issue the statement he did. Indeed, it would have violated policy had he not done so...The FBI [has now] discovered that the investigation had not, in fact, been a complete one. It appears that thousands of emails exist on a computer belonging to former congressman Anthony Weiner and Clinton aide Huma Abedin that had not been turned over during the investigation. The failure of the Clinton camp to provide all pertinent evidence rendered Comey’s July announcement misleading. The FBI’s investigation was not comprehensive and not complete, and the conclusions announced by Comey three months ago were therefore premature. If the FBI remained silent about the newly discovered incompleteness of its earlier investigation, it would be deliberately leaving uncorrected a misleading statement being used by the Clinton campaign to its political advantage. Thus, failure to correct the record would have been deceitful and would have represented a political decision to influence the election by leaving in place a misleading statement. At this point, the right choice was honesty — explaining that new emails had been found and would have to be reviewed.
Former Democratic Governor and Clinton supporter Ed Rendell also conceded this morning that Comey probably did what he had to do, given the circumstances. Meanwhile, another former US Attorney General and widely respected federal judge, Michael Mukasey, is sharply condemning Comey. But not under the about-face pretext being used by so many of these pop-up critics. He believes that the latest controversial developments are a headache of Comey's own making, given his questionable previous actions in this saga. Via the Wall Street Journal:
Friday’s announcement had a history. Recall that Mr. Comey’s authority extends only to supervising the gathering of facts to be presented to Justice Department lawyers for their confidential determination of whether those facts justify a federal prosecution. Nonetheless, in July he announced that “no reasonable prosecutor” would seek to charge her with a crime, although Mrs. Clinton had classified information on a private nonsecure server—at least a misdemeanor under one statute; and although she was “extremely careless” in her handling of classified information such that it was exposed to hacking by hostile foreign nations—a felony under another statute; and apparently had caused the destruction of emails—a felony under two other statutes. He then told Congress repeatedly that the investigation into her handling of emails was closed...Those decisions were not his to make, nor were the reasons he offered for making them at all tenable: that prosecutions for anything but mishandling large amounts of classified information, accompanied by false statements to investigators, were unprecedented; and that criminal prosecutions for gross negligence were constitutionally suspect. Members of the military have been imprisoned and dishonorably discharged for mishandling far less information, and prosecutions for criminal negligence are commonplace and entirely permissible. Yet the attorney general, whose decisions they were, and who had available to her enough legal voltage to vaporize Mr. Comey’s flimsy reasons for inaction, told Congress she would simply defer to the director.
Mukasey writes that even despite a string of bizarre side deals and grants of immunity, there was ample evidence with which to move forward with a potential prosecution -- and that Comey should have insisted upon referring the case to a grand jury, then made that request public or resigned if the politicized Loretta Lynch rebuffed his recommendation. The erstwhile judge and top federal law enforcement official argues that the events of the last few days are a side drama that misses the larger point: That Comey's original decision was wrong, and that his assertion that "no reasonable prosecutor" would ever have moved forward under the same set of facts was preposterous. A separate line of criticism -- most prominently championed by the cretinous liar and shameless hypocrite Harry Reid -- is that Comey is trying to swing the election by notifying Congress of new developments about Hillary's scandal, but remaining mum on Donald Trump's ties to Russia. While Trumpworld's relationship with the Kremlin is a source of non-imaginary concern, the New York Times poured cold water on a burgeoning Lefty oppo dump last night. Perhaps that's why Comey chose not to jump the gun and go public on this front. And perhaps this is why Comey felt compelled to update his prior testimony before Congress regarding Mrs. Clinton's mess:
Fox News just now: “Source: ‘Certainty’ new Clinton records are on Weiner’s laptop & likely contain classified material"— Hadas Gold (@Hadas_Gold) October 31, 2016
As I initially wrote as this story was breaking, I'd be quite surprised if Comey decided to reactivate this probe -- and share that decision with Congress and voters -- based on virtually nothing. It would make a lot more sense if there was a clear indication that the unsecure device Huma Abedin failed to turn over contained classified material. This would constitute another potential crime, and Abedin could well be guilty of perjury, too. And wouldn't you know it, the State Department happened to discover and release hundreds of additional pages of emails between Clinton and Abedin just yesterday, including classified messages. What timing:
I'll leave you with an...interesting piece Hillary Clinton tweeted out to her followers yesterday:
Wait, she actually tweeted this? A rare moment of honesty... ?? pic.twitter.com/87VvgGI1iG— Guy Benson (@guypbenson) October 31, 2016