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Thursday, August 31, 2017
Comey Drafted Announcement Closing Hillary Clinton Probe Before Key Witnesses Interviewed: Senators
‘Conclusion first, fact-gathering second — that’s no way to run an investigation’ Now we know there was Collusion to let Hillary Slide. It's why the Democrats are accusing everyone that breaths of Collusion. Offense is the best Defense! ...tmiraldi Andrea Noble
Two Republican senators say they’ve reviewed evidence that indicates former FBI Director James Comey began drafting a statement to announce the closure of the bureau’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server before key witnesses, including Mrs. Clinton, were interviewed.
Sen. Chuck Grassley and Sen. Lindsey Graham wrote to FBI Director Chris Wray asking for information related to Mr. Comey’s announcement, saying they’ve reviewed partially redacted interview transcripts that indicate Mr. Comey was drafting a statement on the closure of the case months before the July 5, 2016 announcement.
The interview transcripts are from an investigation the Office of Special Counsel was conducting that looked into whether Mr. Comey’s actions were a violation of the Hatch Act, which prohibits government employees from using their positions to influence an election. The investigation was closed after President Trump fired Mr. Comey in May.
But partially redacted transcripts of interviews with James Rybicki, Mr. Comey’s chief of staff, and Trisha Anderson, the FBI’s principal deputy general counsel of national security and cyberlaw, were turned over to to Mr. Grassley after he requested the information.
Last July, Mr. Comey announced the closure of the Clinton probe and publicly described why the FBI opted not to bring charges against Mrs. Clinton or any of her State Department aides. The FBI director testified earlier this year before he was fired that he took the unusual step because he believed that a June 2016 airport tarmac meeting between Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch and Mrs. Clinton’s husband, former President Bill Clinton, had undermined the Justice Department’s credibility to independently investigate the case.
The transcripts cited by the Republican lawmakers indicates that a draft statement about the conclusion of the investigation was being circulated among a select group of FBI officials as early as April 2016.
The senators said that was before 17 key witnesses, including Mrs. Clinton, were interviewed by the FBI.
“Conclusion first, fact-gathering second—that’s no way to run an investigation. The FBI should be held to a higher standard than that, especially in a matter of such great public interest and controversy,” the senators wrote in a letter sent Thursday to Mr. Wray.