Former FBI Director James Comey doesn’t believe anyone in the government brought politics into the Hillary Clinton email investigation — aside from then-President Obama and Attorney General Loretta Lynch, who he believes “jeopardized” the Department of Justice.
In his upcoming book, A Higher Loyalty, due out on Tuesday, Comey defends the FBI investigators who were charged with investigating Clinton’s private email server and her mishandling of classified information. The Washington Examiner obtained a copy of the book Sunday.
“I never heard anyone on our team — not one — take a position that seemed driven by their personal political motivations. And more than that: I never heard an argument or observation I thought came from a political bias. Never,” Comey writes in his book. “Instead we debated, argued, listened, reflected, agonized, played devil’s advocate, and even found opportunities to laugh as we hashed out major decisions.”
Instead, the people who complicated the investigation the most with their political statements were Obama and Lynch.
Comey said Obama’s public statements about the investigation “jeopardized” the investigation’s credibility in multiple interviews and seemed to absolve Clinton of any crime before FBI investigators completed their work.
“Contributing to this problem, regrettably, was President Obama. He had jeopardized the Department of Justice’s credibility in the investigation by saying in a 60 Minutes interview on Oct. 11, 2015, that Clinton’s email use was “a mistake” that had not endangered national security,” Comey writes. “Then on Fox News on April 10, 2016, he said that Clinton may have been careless but did not do anything to intentionally harm national security, suggesting that the case involved overclassification of material in the government.”
“President Obama is a very smart man who understands the law very well. To this day, I don’t know why he spoke about the case publicly and seemed to absolve her before a final determination was made. If the president had already decided the matter, an outside observer could reasonably wonder, how on earth could his Department of Justice do anything other than follow his lead.”