The culmination of the Hillary Clinton email investigation was a farce, and we’re beginning to know that for a fact (as opposed to the near-certainty that it already was at the time). Thanks to the text messages between Lisa Page and Peter Strzok that have been released to the public, we now know that when Attorney General Loretta Lynch told the American people that she would go along with whatever recommendation was made by the FBI, she was putting on a show. Nothing more. It was a decision she could make without fear…because she already knew what FBI Director James Comey was going to say.
The timeline goes like this: On June 27, 2016, Lynch met with Bill Clinton on an airport tarmac in Phoenix, Arizona. Since Clinton’s wife was, at the time, under an FBI investigation regarding her misuse of classified material, this impromptu, secret meeting attracted a great deal of confusion and anger. Clinton and Lynch both insisted that they merely chatted about recipes and grandchildren while on the plane and away from the cameras, but that was a jagged pill for the public to swallow. This wasn’t just “bad optics,” as Obama liked to blame; this was a staggering lapse in judgement.
A few days later, Lynch told the Washington Post that she would not be involved in determining whether or not to prosecute Hillary Clinton. “This matter will be handled by the career people who are independent,” she said. “They live from administration to administration. Their role is to follow the facts and follow the law and make a determination as to what happened and what those next steps should be.
“This case, as you know, has generated a lot of attention,” she continued. “I will be informed of those findings as opposed to never reading them or never seeing them. But I will be accepting their recommendations and their plan for going forward.”
In other words, she wasn’t going to recuse herself from the case, but she would accept whatever recommendation the FBI director made. Implied, but not said, of course, is the idea that Lynch did not know at the time what that recommendation would be.
However, that’s not what Page indicated in a message to her lover on July 1, when she wrote sarcastically: “It’s a real profile in courage [for Lynch to step back], since she knows no charges will be brought.”
It’s another drip of injustice that has become a veritable flood. We already know that Comey began drafting the exoneration speech months before the end of the investigation – months before Hillary had even been interviewed by the FBI. Now we know that the top woman at the Justice Department (and, apparently, many lawyers and agents within the Bureau) knew that Clinton was not going to be prosecuted long before Comey announced it to the public. And what concerns us at this point is not what we’ve already learned, but what might be the next shoe to drop.
And, frankly, whether or not anyone in the Justice Department (or Congress) is going to do anything about it.