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WASHINGTON – The State Department must make a good-faith effort to recover outstanding Benghazi-related emails sent by three of Hillary’s Clinton’s closest aides during her tenure as the nation’s top diplomat, a federal judge has ruled.
“The court finds that State’s search was inadequate insofar as it did not search the official state.gov e-mail accounts of Secretary Clinton’s three aides, and orders State to conduct a supplemental search of those accounts,” United States District Judge Amit Metha wrote Tuesday in the 10-page judgment.
The ruling lists the former Clinton aides as Huma Abedin, former chief of staff Cheryl Mills and ex-deputy chief of staff Jake Sullivan, and requires the State Department to report back to the court with a status update by Sept. 22.
The search was ordered via Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) litigation initiated by the conservative-leaning transparency advocacy group Judicial Watch.
Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said in a Tuesday statement that the ruling might help lead to answers about what Clinton knew about the Sept. 11, 2012 terror attack in which four Americans – including Ambassador Christopher Stevens – were killed.
“This major court ruling may finally result in more answers about the Benghazi scandal-and Hillary Clinton’s involvement in it – as we approach the attack’s fifth anniversary,” Fitton said.
Judicial Watch successfully sued the State Department last year to obtain the expedited release of thousands of potentially Benghazi-related Clinton emails.
Clinton blamed the attack on an anti-Muslim video that stirred up protesters, but simultaneously told her daughter, Chelsea Clinton, and other governments that it was a terrorist endeavor.
Clinton told the House Select Committee on Benghazi in October 2015 that she neither sent nor received classified information on the private email server she had used.
Former FBI Director James Comey later told the House Oversight Committee that Clinton had not been entirely truthful when making that statement.
WASHINGTON- House Judiciary Committee Republicans on Thursday requested the appointment of special counsel to probe potential misconduct by Democrats and former FBI Director James Comey during last year’s presidential election.
“We call on you to appoint a second special counsel to investigate a plethora of matters connected to the 2016 election and its aftermath, including actions taken by previously public figures like Attorney General Loretta Lynch, FBI Director James Comey, and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton,” said the letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.
Rosenstein in May following intense political fallout resulting from President Donald Trump’s decision to fire Comey-appointed Robert Muller III to investigate allegations of collusion between members of the Trump campaign and high-ranking Russian officials.
Mueller is not tasked with investigating Hillary Clinton and former Obama Administration officials.
Lynch last summer met privately with former president Bill Clinton aboard a private plane on the tarmac of the Phoenix Airport. Lynch was heavily criticized for creating what appeared to be an impression of impropriety given that meeting took place just days after Comey had announced that the Bureau would not charge Clinton for having sent and received classified information on a private email server.
Lynch later said that she and the 42nd president had merely engaged in a social visit in which they discussed their grandchildren.
Comey last month told the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence that the revelation of the private meeting is what motivated him to tell the public that the Bureau would not pursue charges.
Lynch concurred with Comey’s recommendation that Clinton should not be charged.
However, 11 days before the 2016 presidential election, Comey sent a letter to several Congressional committees announcing that the FBI was reopening the Clinton email investigation after having discovered more than 600,000 emails of interest in an unrelated probe.
Two days before the election, Comey announced that the second probe reaffirmed his original decision not to charge Clinton.
Clinton has blamed Comey and many others for her defeat to Trump.
WASHINGTON—Former presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush delivered a veiled prod to Donald Trump Thursday night, both emphasizing that whoever is Commander-in-Chief should display humility in office.
Joining Clinton on stage at the George W. Bush Presidential Center in Dallas, Texas for a conversation, Bush praised his predecessor for being “humble in victory” after winning 1992’s election against his father, George H.W. Bush.
The quality, Bush said, helped Clinton deal with others while serving.
While neither of the former presidents mentioned Trump by name, Clinton landed a more on-the-nose critique.
“You don’t want to say: ‘God, look at all the people I beat. The people I worked over,’” Clinton said. “I think the most important thing is to be humble, to listen, to realize everyone has a story.”
Trump has repeatedly boasted about his surprise 2016 election win since taking office in interviews and public appearances.
While coming from other sides of the aisle and representing opposing political legacies, both former presidents emphasized their friendship.
Bush, at one point, described Clinton as a “brother from another mother.”
WASHINGTON—Al Baldasaro, a New Hampshire State Representative who said during the 2016 campaign that Hillary Clinton should be “shot for treason,” was seen at the White House Friday at a bill signing ceremony.
Baldasaro, who served as co-chair of the Trump campaign’s veterans coalition, said during a July appearance on the Jeff Kuhner Show that “Clinton should be put in the firing line and shot for treason” over her handling of the 2012 Benghazi attacks.
The Secret Service ultimately ended up investigating Baldasaro following the remarks.
Friday’s signing ceremony was for the Department of Veterans Affairs Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act of 2017.
Baldasaro, a veteran, tweeted a photo of himself from the White House’s East Wing prior to the event.
— Rep Al Baldasaro (@Al_Baldasaro) June 23, 2017
In addition, he was seen sitting within the first two rows.
Baldasaro’s appearance in the executive mansion comes as the White House pushes back against violent rhetoric from the left, an effort that included a statement Friday morning condemning actor Johnny Depp for commenting that “maybe it’s about time” for an actor to assassinate the president.
“President Trump has condemned violence in all forms and it’s sad that others like Johnny Depp have not followed his lead,” the unsigned statement reads.
When asked Friday how Baldasaro’s appearance sits with the White House’s call for a more civil tone, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer appeared to be unaware of Baldasaro’s remarks, but condemned violent rhetoric in all forms.
This is not the first time an individual who has used violent language was invited to the White House under Trump’s presidency.
Musician Ted Nugent joined former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin and musician Kid Rock for dinner with the President in April.
Nugent had said during a 2012 concert that President Barack Obama should “suck on my machine gun.”
When asked about the appearance in May, Spicer said that he was unaware of Nugent’s remark.
WASHINGTON- Former FBI Director James Comey said the revelation of former President Bill Clinton’s private meeting with then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch motivated him to tell the public that the Bureau would not charge Hillary Clinton.
“Yes in an ultimately conclusive way… that I had to do something separately to protect the credibility of the investigation, which meant both the FBI and Justice Department,” Comey said in response to a question from Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Richard Burr (R-N.C.) during a hearing on Thursday.
Comey explained that Lynch directed him “not to call it an investigation and call it a matter—which confused me.”
He explained later that he was concerned Lynch was aligning herself with similar comments made by Hillary Clinton’s campaign to describe the probe. “That gave me a queasy feeling,” he said.
Comey had called the Clinton case a criminal investigation.
Several days before Comey’s announcement, Lynch met with the 42nd president aboard a private plane on the tarmac of the Phoenix Airport. Lynch was heavily criticized for creating what appeared to be an impression of impropriety and later said that she and the former president had merely engaged in a social visit, talking about grandchildren.
Lynch concurred with Comey’s recommendation that Clinton should not be charged for having sent and received classified information on a private server and that decision was believed to have been the end of the matter.
However, 11 days before the 2016 presidential election, Comey sent a letter to several Congressional committees announcing that the FBI was re-opening the Clinton email investigation after having discovered more than 600,000 emails of interest in an unrelated probe.
Two days before the election Comey announced that the second probe reaffirmed his original decision not to charge Clinton.
Clinton as of late has blamed Comey and host of other parties for her defeat at the hands of President Donald Trump.
WASHINGTON- Former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said she is not the reason she lost the White House to President Donald Trump, but instead put the blame on nearly everyone from the DNC to Netflix.
“I take responsibility for every decision I make -but that’s not why I lost,” Clinton told the California Recode’s Code Conference on Wednesday.
Clinton told the conference that then-FBI Director James Comey’s decision to reopen her email investigation 11 days before the election after having discovered Clinton-related emails in an unrelated probe may have distracted voters from Russian election meddling.
“Comey was more than happy to talk about my emails, but he wouldn’t talk about the Russians,” she complained.
Clinton went on to dismiss her email scandal as: “the biggest nothing-burger ever.”
Comey two days before the election closed the second Clinton email investigation.
Clinton blamed the Democratic National Committee for what she perceived to be an ineffective campaign operation.
“I inherited nothing from the Democratic Party,” she said. “I mean, it was bankrupt, it was on the verge of insolvency, its data was mediocre to poor, nonexistent, wrong.”
Former Democratic National Committee data science director Andrew Therriault in a series of Wednesday afternoon Tweets that have since been removed-refuted Clinton’s assertion.
“DNC data folks: today’s accusations are f*******g b******t, and I hope you understand the good you did despite that nonsense.”
“Private mode be d****d, this is too important,” Therriault continued in a corresponding Tweet. “I’m not willing to let my people be thrown under the bus without a fight.”
Clinton in part attributed her defeat to the release of damaging information following WikiLeaks’ publications of hacked campaign emails that suggested she had used her family’s foundation as a vehicle to trade favors in exchange for access while serving as the nation’s top diplomat.
Clinton said that WikiLeaks is orchestrated by Russian intelligence and she indirectly accused Trump campaign aides of having colluded with Moscow to undermine her campaign.
“The Russians, in my opinion, and based on the intel and counterintel people I’ve talked to, could not have known how best to weaponize that information unless they had been guided,” she alleged. “Guided by Americans. And guided by people who had polling and data and information.”
Clinton also blamed the entertainment industry, social media, the mainstream media and even said Netflix had a role in her defeat.
“Eight of the top 10 political documentaries on Netflix, last time I checked, were screeds against President Obama and myself,” she said.
“If you look at Facebook, the vast majority of the news items posted were fake. They were connected to, as we now know, the 1,000 Russian agents who were involved in delivering those messages,” she alleged.
“They covered it like it was Pearl Harbor,” she said in reference to The New York Times’ coverage of the unexpected October revelation that Comey had decided to reopen the investigation into her email scandal.
Clinton said she is writing a book about her presidential campaign and how the email scandal affected her candidacy.
Polling data suggests Clinton’s defeat can largely be attributed to her failure to gain sufficient support among white working-class voters. Although that demographic has for the most part voted Republican since the Reagan-era, Clinton was the first Democratic presidential candidate in a generation to lose the rust-belt states of Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin.
Clinton did not even campaign in Wisconsin whereas Trump zeroed in on that state as well as others that had experienced a chronic loss of manufacturing jobs. She blamed her failure to win Wisconsin on Gov. Scott Walker.
President Trump in a Wednesday evening Tweet called on Clinton to take responsibility for her election loss.
Crooked Hillary Clinton now blames everybody but herself, refuses to say she was a terrible candidate. Hits Facebook & even Dems & DNC.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 1, 2017
WASHINGTON—Former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton gave her clearest and most public criticism of Donald Trump’s presidency since the end of the election during a commencement speech at Massachusetts’ Wellesley College Friday.
While avoiding a direct mention of Trump, Clinton targeted the current administration on policy grounds, particularly its recently unveiled budget.
“Look at the budget that was just proposed in Washington. It is an attack of unimaginable cruelty,” Clinton said. “It grossly underfunds public education, mental health and efforts even to combat the opioid epidemic and in reversing its commitment to fight climate change it puts the future of our nation and our world at risk.”
Clinton went on to invoke what critics have said is “double counting” in the budget, a charge based in the administration saying that economic growth will both balance the budget and pay for tax cuts.
“It is shrouded in a trillion dollar mathematical lie. Let’s call it what it is, it’s a con, they don’t even try to hide it,” Clinton said.
Clinton’s argument was based on a broader theme of what she described as “full-fledged assault on truth and reason.”
“Just log on to social media for 10 seconds, it will hit you right in the face, people denying science, concocting elaborate, hurtful conspiracy theories about child abuse rings operating out of pizza parlors,” Clinton said, referencing an alt-right conspiracy theory that claimed that Clinton’s campaign chair John Podesta was overseeing a child trafficking operation out of a D.C. restaurant.
“Some are even denying things we see with our own eyes, like the size of crowds. And then defending themselves by talking about alternative facts,” Clinton continued, a nod to the White House’s push against those noting that the president’s inauguration crowd was smaller than previous presidents.
Earlier in the speech, Clinton also gave a thinly-veiled comparison between Trump and Nixon.
“[When I graduated] we were furious about the past presidential election
of a man whose presidency would eventually end in disgrace for his impeachment for obstruction of justice after firing the person running the investigation into him at the Department of Justice,” Clinton said. “We got through that tumultuous time.”
Clinton told the class of 2017 that they must be prepared for “trolls galore” that will await them in a coming year.
“They may even call you a ‘nasty woman,’” Clinton said, raising a term that Trump had used against her during a presidential debate.
Clinton has largely reserved her criticism of Trump to Twitter, but Friday’s speech has been her most public return to the public stage to-date.
Last week Clinton launched Onward Together, a political action group focused on progressive policy.
WASHINGTON- When President Trump appoints a new FBI Director it could not only impact the direction of the Russia investigation but it could also trigger the reopening of Hillary Clinton’s email investigation.
But will the new FBI director go after Clinton?
“It is entirely appropriate for a new director to reconsider whether the investigation was complete and the evidence was evaluated fully and fairly,” said former federal prosecutor Jacob Frenkel.
Recently fired FBI Director James Comey decided to reopen the Clinton email investigation 11 days before the 2016 presidential election after having discovered Clinton-related emails in an unrelated probe. Comey then proceeded to shutdown that investigation just two days before the election.
The FBI’s decision not to charge Clinton following back-to-back probes raised questions among some critics as to whether the Bureau prioritizes holding accountable high-ranking government officials who mishandle sensitive information.
More recently, former acting Attorney General Sally Yates suggested to a Senate Judiciary subcommittee that the FBI did not intend to investigate the source of recent media leaks that led to the resignation of White House National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.
The Washington Post in February reported that Flynn had diplomatically engaged Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak prior to President Donald Trump taking office and that Flynn misled Vice President Mike Pence about that conversation.
The reports suggested that Flynn may have given Kislyak the impression that the incoming Administration might be willing to consider lifting sanctions that were imposed on Moscow following Russia’s 2014 annexation of Crimea from neighboring Ukraine.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from the Russia investigation following media reports that he had twice met with Kislyak while a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee.
Nick Akerman, a former assistant U.S. Attorney who was also a member of the Watergate special prosecution team, said he does not believe Comey’s successor will reopen the Clinton email investigation.
“I would say there is a zero chance of this happening for the same reason no case was brought in the first instance,” Akerman told TMN.
“There was not a single email found on the Clinton server that was marked as Classified, i.e. “confidential,” “secret” or “top secret.” There was also no evidence in any of the emails that showed any intent to misuse classified information,” he said.
Sean M. Bigley, an attorney specializing in national security cases, said the FBI should reopen the Clinton email investigation but cautioned that doing so could result in unintended consequences.
“However, there are also public policy implications involved in reopening the Clinton case now – namely, the potential appearance of retribution,” Bigley said.
WASHINGTON- FBI Director James Comey defended his decision to reopen the Clinton email investigation less than two weeks before last year’s presidential election.
“It makes me mildly neausous to think that we might have had some impact on the election but honestly it wouldn’t change the decision,” Comey said in response to a question from the Ranking Democrat on Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday
“Everybody that disagrees with me has to go back to October 28 with me and stare at this and tell me what you would do. Would you speak or would you conceal?” he asked.
Eleven days before the 2016 presidential election, Comey sent a letter to several Congressional committees announcing that the FBI was re-opening the Clinton email investigation after having discovered more than 600,000 emails of interest on the computer of former New York Congressman Anthony Weiner.
Weiner was married to senior Clinton advisor Huma Abedin. The couple has since separated.
The FBI discovered the emails while investigating allegations that Weiner had been sexting with a 15-year-old girl in North Carolina.
Comey explained that the discovered emails reaffirmed his prior decision not to charge Clinton for having sent and received classified information on a private server and that that was why he announced that the Clinton investigation was officially closed two days before the election.
Many Democrats have blamed Comey for Clinton’s defeat at the hands of President Donald Trump.
WASHINGTON – Hillary Clinton said Tuesday that she supported President Donald Trump’s decision to strike a Syrian government air base last month, but that she’s unsure of whether the one-off strike will have much of a lasting effect.
Clinton had advocated hours before the April 6 strike that Trump take out the Syrian government’s air fields to stop President Bashar al-Assad from using them in the Syrian civil war.
Trump opted for a more measured approach, and chose to fire 59 missiles from naval ships in the Mediterranean at a Syrian air base where a chemical attack against the Syrian people is believed to have been launched from two days earlier.
“I didn’t publicly support it because there was, you know, that wasn’t my role, but I did support it,” Clinton told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour at a Women for Women International event in New York. “But, I am not convinced that it really made much of a difference.”
Clinton said she is concerned there were “backroom deals” made with Russia ahead of the strike. The U.S. military said that it notified Russia of the impending strike hours before over an established deconfliction communications line in order to prevent Russian and Syrian casualties.
“I mean, we later learned that the Russians and the Syrians moved jets off the runway, that the Russians may have been given a heads-up before our own Congress was. I think there’s a lot we really don’t fully know about what was part of that strike,” Clinton said. “And, if all that it was was a one-off effort, it’s not going to have much of a lasting effect.”
During the appearance, Clinton said she takes blame for losing the 2016 presidential race but said that had the vote happened earlier she would have emerged the victor.
She pointed to the timing of a vague letter FBI Director James Comey wrote to Congress announcing that the agency was re-opening the investigation of her private email server and Russian interference that led to the release of private communications via Wikileaks as major contributors to her loss.
“If the election had been on October 27, I would be your president,” she said.
“It wasn’t a perfect campaign, there is no such thing, but I was on the way to winning until a combination of Jim Comey’s letter on October 28 and Russian WikiLeaks raised doubts in the minds of people who were inclined to vote for me and got scared off.”
“The evidence for that intervening event is, I think, compelling, persuasive, and so we overcame a lot in the campaign … The reason I believe we lost was because of events of the last 10 days.”
Clinton noted that within hours of the leak of the 2005 Access Hollywood tape of Trump making vulgar remarks about touching women, Wikileaks published private communications from her campaign chairman, John Podesta.
She said she believes misogyny played a role in her loss, but didn’t dwell on the idea when asked by Amanpour.
Clinton touted that she won more votes that Trump, beating him in the popular vote by some 3 million tallies.
Clinton said to applause that she was taking the appearance to “publicly request that this administration not end our efforts making women’s rights and opportunities central to American foreign policy and national security.”
CNN reported Monday that the Trump administration was ending former First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let Girls Learn initiative, a diplomatic program established in 2015 to facilitate educational opportunities for adolescent girls in developing countries.
Trump in January reinstating the “Mexico City” policy, barring U.S. aid funds from any group that provides or gives abortion counseling overseas.
Clinton praised Defense Secretary Jim Mattis for supporting foreign aid funding, which Trump has proposed to cut by 28 percent.
Clinton cautioned that the U.S. should approach negotiations with North Korea in the context of a broader strategic framework with China, Japan, Russia and South Korea. Trump has said he is ready to take on North Korea’s weapons program unilaterally if China proves to to be unwilling collaborator.