In a letter sent by Hillary Clinton’s campaign on Sunday night, former Attorney General Eric Holder as well as dozens of former DOJ officials slammed FBI director James Comey’s decision to reopen the FBI prove into Hillary Clinton just days ahead of the election. Comey wrote a letter to members of Congress announcing the decision, prompting criticism from Democrats and former high-ranking Justice officials, now including ex-Attorney General Eric Holder, suggesting a major ideological and political schism has formed between the DOJ – which as the WSJ reported last night stifled a similar probe into the Clinton Foundation – and the FBI.
Joining a similar letter penned by Harry Reid on Sunday, the letter said that “Justice Department officials are instructed to refrain from commenting publicly on the existence, let alone the substance, of pending investigative matters, except in exceptional circumstances and with explicit approval from the Department of Justice officials responsible for ultimate supervision of the matter.”
“They are also instructed to exercise heightened restraint near the time of a primary or general election because, as official guidance from the Department instructs, public comment on a pending investigative matter may affect the electoral process and create the appearance of political interference in the fair administration of justice.”
Democrats are furious about what they see as political meddling on the part of the bureau and its director so close to Election Day.
“Many of us have worked with Director Comey; all of us respect him. But his unprecedented decision to publicly comment on evidence in what may be an ongoing inquiry just eleven days before a presidential election leaves us both astonished and perplexed,” the letter continues.
“We cannot recall a prior instance where a senior Justice Department official—Republican or Democrat—has, on the eve of a major election, issued a public statement where the mere disclosure of information may impact the election’s outcome, yet the official acknowledges the information to be examined may not be significant or new.”
The problem is that no matter what happens now, the criminal probe has been reopened and there are nearly 650,000 emails to sift through, as reported by the Wall Street Journal; as such it is unlikely that the FBI make further comment on the matter before Election Day.
“We do not question Director Comey’s motives. However, the fact remains that the Director’s disclosure has invited considerable, uninformed public speculation about the significance of newly-discovered material just days before a national election” the letter says.
It concludes by calling for the release of “information that provides a full and complete picture regarding the material at issue.”
Full letter below.
— ABC News (@ABC) October 31, 2016
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