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Inspector General Debunks Trump's Political Bias Claims Against Comey

15 June 2018

In messages exchanged on November 9, 2016 and documented starting on page 417 of the report, FBI Attorney 2 and other FBI employees discuss their distress over the results of the presidential election and insult Trump supporters. The report also notes that then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch repeatedly raised concerns about leaks from NY.

President Donald Trump has repeatedly asserted that the FBI botched the Clinton email investigation.

Horowitz had a similar assessment for Comey, whose particular actions leading up to the election have been the subject of intense debate due in large part to his reopening of the federal investigation into Clinton's emails just 11 days before Americans went to the polls.

Horowitz' report found no "documentary or testimonial evidence" that the lovebirds' political bias affected their work, but conceded that "the conduct by these employees cast a cloud over the entire FBI investigation".

"Absent an outright confession, they're not going to be able to draw that conclusion", Johnson said.

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Horowitz criticized Comey for failing to consult with Attorney General Loretta Lynch and other senior Justice Department officials before taking the unusual step in July 2016 of announcing on national TV the FBI's decision not to refer the Clinton case for prosecution.

The Inspector General notes that the FBI had already prioritized the Russian Federation investigation - i.e. targeting Trump - over the Clinton investigation. Lynch came under scrutiny during the campaign for meeting with former President Bill Clinton on a tarmac in Arizona in late June 2016. The inspector general has previously unearthed an exchange of pro-Clinton, anti-Trump texts between the two. Trump will nearly certainly use the report to validate his firing of Comey previous year. According to Comey, his decision to announce the reopening publicly was based on the assumption Clinton would win the election, and motivated by a desire not to be seen as helping her. Another Democrat, Sen. Chris Coons of DE, tweeted that the report is not proof of a conspiracy and that Mueller's investigation into Russian interference in the election should be allowed to proceed without interference. Lawmakers on Capitol Hill also will get briefings ahead of the report's public release, aides said. "And I could be wrong, but we honestly made a decision between those two choices that even in hindsight - and this has been one of the world's most painful experiences - I would make the same decision". So, too, the witch hunt accusations slung Robert Mueller's way, for his ongoing failures to tie anything "Russia Collusion" to Team Trump - or "Russia Conflict of Interest", for that matter.

The report comes 18 months after Horowitz announced that his office would look into alleged misconduct surrounding Comey's handling of the investigation into Clinton's emails, including allegations that DOJ and FBI policies or procedures were not followed.

John Lavinsky, a spokesman for the Office of the Inspector General, said in a statement this week that the office occasionally gives pre-release briefings to Congress and the media, adding that "for the Justice Department to brief the White House in the same manner and at the same time as the OIG briefs Congress and the press is consistent with this process".

Overseen by Mueller, the probe is examining whether members of the Trump campaign colluded with Moscow to tilt the 2016 election in his favor.

Inspector General Debunks Trump's Political Bias Claims Against Comey