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Johnson writes: "The Justice Department's watchdog has launched a sweeping review of conduct by the FBI director and other department officials before the presidential election, following calls from Congress and members of the public."

FBI Director James Comey, shown here testifying on Capitol Hill on Tuesday, has told friends and employees he had few good choices in the investigation into Clinton's handling of classified information on her private email server. (photo: Cliff Owen/AP)
FBI Director James Comey, shown here testifying on Capitol Hill on Tuesday, has told friends and employees he had few good choices in the investigation into Clinton's handling of classified information on her private email server. (photo: Cliff Owen/AP)


DOJ Watchdog to Review Pre-Election Conduct of FBI, Other Justice Officials

By Carrie Johnson, NPR

13 January 17

 

he Justice Department's watchdog has launched a sweeping review of conduct by the FBI director and other department officials before the presidential election, following calls from Congress and members of the public.

Top advisers to Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton have blamed FBI Director James Comey, in part, for her loss in November. Now, federal investigators say they will examine whether public statements by Comey in July, October and November 2016 ran afoul of policies that caution officials not to influence the outcome of an election and to avoid making derogatory comments about people who haven't been formally charged with wrongdoing.

Comey has previously told friends and employees that he had few good choices in the investigation into Clinton's handling of classified information on her private email server.

In a statement Thursday, Comey said, "I am grateful to the Department of Justice's IG for taking on this review. He is professional and independent and the FBI will cooperate fully with him and his office. I hope very much he is able to share his conclusions and observations with the public because everyone will benefit from thoughtful evaluation and transparency regarding this matter."

Inspector General Michael Horowitz said he would not "substitute" his judgment on the declination to prosecute Clinton for that of prosecutors and the FBI. And he said the review could expand based on what his investigators encounter along the way.

Among the issues the IG will scrutinize:

  • Allegations that Justice Department and FBI staffers improperly leaked details about investigations before the election.

  • Claims that some "underlying investigative decisions were based on improper considerations."

  • Allegations that the deputy director of the FBI and the chief congressional liaison at the Justice Department should have recused themselves from the Clinton investigation.

  • How the FBI release of information about an old investigation of Bill Clinton's last-minute presidential pardons happened only days before the election and how an FBI Twitter account came to publicize the documents.

Former Clinton press secretary Brian Fallon called the inspector general's announcement "highly encouraging and to be expected given Director Comey's drastic deviation from Justice Department protocol."

Fallon said the probe is "utterly necessary in order to take the first step to restore the FBI's reputation as a nonpartisan institution."

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Comments   

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+7 # HowardMH 2017-01-13 10:46
About 6 Months to late.
 
 
+7 # tedrey 2017-01-13 12:14
To "restore the FBI's reputation as a nonpartisan institution." Is the CIA a nonpartisan institution? Is the White House? Is the current Justice Department? Is any House or Senate Comittee? I'm hard put to thuink of any nonpartisan institution in DC except a couple like the Ethics Commitee that the repubs are tryng to get rid of.
 
 
+4 # librarian1984 2017-01-13 12:25
I hope some truth will emerge, but the story is larger than what is stated in this article.

Who was calling the shots throughout the email investigation? What is the evidence timeline, who were the sources, what actions did Clinton take? Because Comey was not operating in a vacuum. For every action he took there was a reaction from Clinton which led to Comey's next action etc. So, necessarily, this investigation may also shed light on what Clinton was doing. We've heard hardware was lost or destroyed, that subpoenaed documents were destroyed, etc. I would like to know the truth about what was going on -- not just with Comey but with the AG's office and Clinton.

At a higher remove, I'd like to learn about intra-agency activities. It seems clear there is a rivalry between the CIA and FBI playing out in front of our eyes. The CIA seems to be anti-Trump and the FBI pro. What does that mean? Is the CIA using disinformation to disenfranchise the citizenry? Is the FBI using its power to attack civilians? Details, please.

This investigation could go on and on. Trump may have decided not to go after HRC but Congress hasn't. They can expand the scope of this inquiry as much as they want, which should set up some remarkable YouTube moments. Will Facebook support free speech -- or the establishment?

We've become used to voting and then going back to sleep, but that can't happen this time. Much will be revealed and we must be ready to act.
 
 
+12 # Texas Aggie 2017-01-13 13:00
to restore the FBI's reputation as a nonpartisan institution."

How can your restore something that never existed? Since the very beginning with J Edgar the FBI has been a partisan institution of the worst kind. Their attacks on Civil Rights leaders while denying the very existence of organized crime wasn't an accident. Their investigations of antiwar groups like the Quakers while ignoring the militias wasn't an accident either.

Those boys never have been bipartisan and aren't even familiar with the concept.
 
 
+7 # CL38 2017-01-13 13:59
I'd like to see a real investigation into the voting irregularities that went on by the DNC and the Clinton campaign to stop voting for --and prevent -- Bernie Sanders from winning the nomination.

If all of Sanders votes had been counted, he would be our next President, not Trump. And our country's political system and media wouldn't be working so hard to ignore and duck the truth.
 
 
0 # librarian1984 2017-01-13 17:14
So good to see you on here! How are you?
 
 
-1 # ericlipps 2017-01-13 21:01
Quoting CL38:
I'd like to see a real investigation into the voting irregularities that went on by the DNC and the Clinton campaign to stop voting for --and prevent -- Bernie Sanders from winning the nomination.

If all of Sanders votes had been counted, he would be our next President, not Trump. And our country's political system and media wouldn't be working so hard to ignore and duck the truth.

Sigh . . .

I learned the hard way long ago not to argue with a person's religion. Sometimes, though, it's hard not to.

If "all of Sanders' votes had been counted," then ACCORDING TO HIM he'd still have lost to Hillary Clinton.

And if somehow he had ended up as the Democratic nominee, Trump would have used anti-Semitism, combined with Sanders' public self-identifica tion as a socialist, to grind him into the dust. Then the Don really would have won the popular-vote victory he claims he did except for those annoyingly nonexistent three million illegal voters.
 
 
+1 # ronnewmexico 2017-01-14 00:10
Any polling done when Bernie was still a candidate showed him winning handily any match up with Trump and Hillary loosing.

So we can conjecture but my conjecture is Bernie would have won. The Dems rely on old politics of the nineties. This is a new political reality. Till they geet it they will continue to loose quite unfortunately. The only good new right now is Bernie and his drug bill.
 
 
0 # candida 2017-01-14 21:28
Quoting ericlipps:
I learned the hard way long ago not to argue with a person's religion.


I agree. But this argument that Bernie would've won really is irkesome for its denial of reality! There are so many historical examples of polls changing over the course of a campaign, let alone six and more months out from an election. And Bernie wasn't even the actual candidate! Just look at the most recent election in which polls changed within a week!

The argument also doesn't account for the GOP stealing the election through Crosscheck and other voter suppression methods. In which case, most likely, IT DOESN'T MATTER WHO WAS THE DEM CANDIDATE! Can we give this "Bernie would've won" a rest already! It is pure speculation and not even based in logic or reason. Like many others on RSN, I voted for Bernie and am disappointed he didn't win and that the DNC manipulated the primary elections, but I also don't believe in fantasies of my own making just because they feel good or anything else.

Let's get real and focus on what we're going to do to make future elections (primary and general) fair, open and democratic. It means opening our eyes to all the ways by which the elections were manipulated or, at the very least, guarding against all the methods alleged by domestic and foreign actors, even if we don't agree they actually happened.
 
 
0 # Robbee 2017-01-14 10:50
if it's not too much trouble? would "DOJ Watchdog" - review the impact, if any, of repugs in 27 states to disenfranchise 7 million voters? - LOCK THEM UP!
 
 
0 # candida 2017-01-14 21:11
Agreed, Robbee. This is far more important than an investigation into DNC shenanigans, although add them to the list to be investigated, why not?
 

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