There has been a great deal of reporting on Hillary’s E-Mail scandal. Bits and pieces of information have come out almost day by day after another batch of E-Mails is released by the State Department. The latest news is that Hillary had on her server human spy people and programs that if they fell into the hands of the enemy could mean that lives will be lost. When you out an undercover CIA Agent you put that Agent’s life in peril. Hillary’s actions are not only illegal and immoral but life threatening.
So with all this publicity and the FBI investigating why is there no action being taken against Hillary? Well that would be because Obama has not allowed the DOJ to cooperate with the FBI. So no Grand Jury will convene until he does. This is a classic move of a politician who wants to play both ends and the middle at the same time.
The FBI routinely conducts major investigations in collaboration with Justice Department prosecutors — usually from the U.S. attorney’s office in the district where potential crimes occurred. That is because the FBI needs the assistance of a grand jury. The FBI does not have authority even to issue subpoenas, let alone to charge someone with a crime. Only federal prosecutors may issue subpoenas, on the lawful authority of the grand jury. Only prosecutors are empowered to present evidence or propose charges to the grand jury. And the Constitution vests only the grand jury with authority to indict — the formal accusation of a crime. In our system, the FBI can do none of these things.
No Justice Department, no grand jury. No grand jury, no case — period. As a technical matter, no matter how extensively the FBI pokes around on its own, no one can be a subject of a real investigation — i.e., one that can lead to criminal charges — unless and until there is a grand jury. That does not happen until the Justice Department hops on board.
Alas, regular criminal-justice procedures have been suspended by the explosive politics of the Clinton investigation. The FBI is doing its professional, apolitical best to investigate the presumptive Democratic nominee for president of the United States. The high stakes rattle not only the Clinton campaign but also the Democratic administration in which Mrs. Clinton worked when she engaged in the work-related conduct being investigated. On the one hand, the Obama administration does not want to be seen by the public as obstructing the FBI; on the other hand, President Obama does not want to be seen by his base as tanking the Democrats’ best shot at retaining the White House — the likely fallout if the Obama Justice Department signals that a formal, very serious criminal investigation is underway.
So Obama is hedging his bets. He is letting the FBI investigate, but on its own, without Justice Department prosecutors and the grand jury. This frees the administration and the Clinton campaign to be, by turns, ambiguous and disingenuous about whether there really is a formal investigation going on. As long as it is only the FBI doing the digging, everyone can play along with the farce: The investigation is very “preliminary,” it doesn’t even have “subjects,” and it may even be a Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy sabotage (in which, somehow, the saboteurs are Obama appointees and non-political law-enforcement agents).
I don’t think it’s going to work.
The FBI may not have a Justice Department prosecutor convening a grand jury, but it so happens that Director James Comey (whom I have known since we were pup prosecutors under Rudy Giuliani nearly 30 years ago) is a more accomplished government lawyer than anyone at the Justice Department. In fact, his own decorated DOJ career includes a term as deputy attorney general of the United States under President George W. Bush. Besides working under administrations of both parties, he has overseen prosecutions of both Republicans and Democrats. I’ve known no one in law enforcement more capable of navigating through a political maelstrom. Jim is tough, he is smart, and if there is a case to be made here, he will make it. And if he makes it, it will be bulletproof.
Of course, making the case would not mean the FBI could force attorney general Loretta Lynch — and the president to whom she answers — to pursue the case. The FBI cannot convene a grand jury and present an indictment. But you’d best believe the FBI can make the Obama administration look very bad if it shrinks from doing so. Then it will be a matter of how far Barack Obama is willing to stick his neck out for Hillary Clinton.
I’m betting: not that far