The Interview: FBI Sits Down With Hillary Clinton
Signaling the closing chapter in their months-long investigation, FBI agents sat down Saturday morning for a 3 1/2 hour interview with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. At issue, of course, is whether or not Clinton violated federal law in her handling of classified information while working at the State Department. That she violated agency policy is beyond dispute. It remains to be seen, however, whether those violations will earn her an indictment.
“It is impossible for the FBI not to recommend criminal charges against Hillary Clinton,” said Donald Trump on Twitter. “What she did was wrong!”
Sadly, though, it’s far from impossible that the FBI will clear the presumptive Democratic nominee of all wrongdoing. In fact, if we’re being honest, we all know it’s the most likely scenario by far. Not because Hillary is clearly innocent – she’s not…not by a long shot – but because the political pressure is far too great. If the evidence calling for criminal charges is too overwhelming to ignore, the FBI will find a fall guy other than Hillary. Barack Obama is not going to sit back and watch his presidential legacy swirl down the drain.
In an interview with MSNBC, Hillary insisted that no one was more excited about the FBI interview than her. “I’ve been eager to do it,” she said, “and I was pleased to have the opportunity to assist the department in bringing its review to a conclusion.”
Yes, yes. Eager. Pleased. The words everyone under FBI investigation uses to characterize their interrogation.
Regardless of how this plays out, it shouldn’t be forgotten just how troubling it is to have the Democratic nominee under criminal scrutiny. RNC Chairman Reince Priebus reminded the public of this in a statement Saturday, saying that Hillary “has just taken the unprecedented step of becoming the first major party presidential candidate to be interviewed by the FBI as part of a criminal investigation surrounding her reckless conduct.”
Hillary’s defenders have said that she will not be charged, insisting that no matter what she might have done wrong, the FBI would not be able to find any willful intent to jeopardize national security.
The thing is, that’s not the standard. Federal law also prohibits “gross negligence” in these matters. And Hillary Clinton’s private server has negligence written all over it. She deserves to sit in a prison cell for her careless actions. But if that’s not politically feasible in these tumultuous times, she must at least be disqualified from becoming President of the United States.