Following weeks of being coy about it, the FBI officially confirmed Monday that they are investigating Hillary Clinton in relation to her use of a private email server while secretary of state. The Justice Department filed a letter in court this week from FBI General Counsel James Baker, who acknowledged that the inquiry was still being conducted. Baker’s letter, written in response to a State Department request for details, reads in part: “We remain unable to provide the requested information without adversely affecting ongoing law enforcement efforts.”
While Baker’s letter confirms the FBI’s active involvement, it sheds little light on the nature of the investigation. “The FBI has not, however, publicly acknowledged the specific focus, scope, or potential targets of any such proceedings,” he wrote.
Even so, the “potential target” of the investigation is obvious. Clinton was the one who decided to sacrifice security for convenience, and it is on her shoulders that rests this unacceptable mistake. As of now, more than 1,500 classified emails have been found on her unsecured server, including 22 which have been marked at the highest level of government secrecy. Clinton’s excuse that these emails were marked classified after the fact may convince voters, but it shouldn’t be enough to shield her from the law.
Speaking of the law, there is mounting pressure on Attorney General Loretta Lynch to step aside and let an independent prosecutor decide whether or not to press charges against Clinton. Not only is Lynch a member of the Obama administration, she was appointed U.S. Attorney in New York by former president Bill Clinton. Not to mention that she served in that capacity while Hillary was senator of that state.
In a statement to The Hill newspaper, Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla) said, “That Hillary Clinton could be the Democratic nominee and the potential next president represents an extraordinary circumstance that commends the appointment of a special counsel.”
This isn’t necessarily about questioning Lynch’s objectivity, but the Justice Department owes the American people an investigation unhindered by the perception of political bias. As DeSantis said, this situation is virtually unprecedented and Lynch can’t afford to treat this like any other case. Even if she is thoroughly transparent, it will be impossible for her to avoid the stench of favoritism.
Alas, keeping the next president out of jail comes with its own rewards and they may be too tempting for Lynch to pass up. Clinton’s reputation can never fully recover from this scandal; we’ve already learned too much about how she endangered national security. But you can bet that she will take a presidency mired in public outrage over a stint in prison. And considering how willing Obama is to ignore the law, it will probably be the voters alone who can keep Hillary from realizing that dream.