I’m not sure what the darkest day in FBI history was, but Thursday had to be up there. That’s when Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz released his 500-odd page report on the Clinton email investigation and the Bureau’s handling of it. And, as it turns out, it’s pretty much the best long-form argument for conservatism since “The Fountainhead,” if only inadvertently.
There was plenty of meat to chomp on, particularly when it came to James Comey, Peter Strzok and Lisa Page. However, James Comey was quick to say that the report had been a vindication of his tenure at the FBI.
In an Op-Ed for The New York Times, Comey wrote that “the inspector general’s team went through the F.B.I.’s work with a microscope and found no evidence that bias or improper motivation affected the investigation, which I know was done competently, honestly and independently.”
There’s only one possible response to that: Did he actually read the report?
Never mind the misconduct spelled out in there. There were multiple examples of bias throughout, including the infamous Peter Strzok. But now he and Lisa Page have another infamous FBI texter joining them, one who called Trump’s voters “poor to middle class, uneducated, lazy POS.” I’m going to assume he didn’t mean “point of sale.”
The text was assumedly after Trump’s election, with an attorney and an employee texting about how awful it all is.
“I am numb,” the attorney said, while the employee said that they “can’t stop crying.” The subject then turned to whether or not the FBI was to blame for this, given that they re-opened the investigation into Hillary’s email shortly before the election. The employee tried to reassure the attorney it made no difference.
“All the people who were initially voting for her would not, and were not, swayed by any decision the FBI put out,” the message read.
“Trump’s supporters are all poor to middle class, uneducated, lazy POS that think he will magically grant them jobs for doing nothing. They probably didn’t watch the debates, aren’t fully educated on his policies, and are stupidly wrapped up in his unmerited enthusiasm.”
"No bias at the FBI" or something. This exchange is nuts. pic.twitter.com/uUj0NlYNAf
— Katie Pavlich (@KatiePavlich) June 14, 2018
I know there’s an Obama joke in here, but I just can’t seem to find it …
There were other fun parts of the inspector general’s report that seem to disprove Comey’s assessment. Take, for instance, where the IG “identified numerous FBI employees, at all levels of the organization and with no official reason to be in contact with the media, who were nevertheless in frequent contact with reporters.”
The report also expressed “profound concerns bout the volume and extent of unauthorized media contacts by FBI personnel that we have uncovered our review.”
Oh, and then there was the part about Strzok’s texts; the IG report noted that “these text messages also caused us to assess Strzok’s decision in October 2016 to prioritize the Russia investigation over following up on the Midyear-related investigative lead discovered on the Weiner laptop. We concluded that we did not have confidence that this decision by Strzok was free from bias.” (Emphasis ours.)
Or there was this gem: “Nevertheless, we found that Page’s statement, on its face, consisted of a recommendation that the Midyear team consider how Clinton would treat the FBI if she were to become President in deciding how to handle Clinton’s interview. Suggesting that investigative decisions be based on this consideration was inappropriate and created an appearance of bias.”
In other words, treat Clinton how Clinton would have treated Clinton. Given Hillary Clinton’s opinion of herself — which is very forgiving of any misdeeds by Hillary Clinton — one can pretty much imagine how this would go.
And then there was this: “when one senior FBI official, Strzok, who was helping to lead the Russia investigation at the time, conveys in a text message to another senior FBI official, Page, that ‘we’ll stop’ candidate Trump from being elected — after other extensive text messages between the two disparaging candidate Trump — it is not only indicative of a biased state of mind but, even more seriously, implies a willingness to take official action to impact the presidential candidate’s electoral prospects. This is antithetical to the core values of the FBI and the Department of Justice.”
“No evidence that bias or improper motivation.” Righty-o, Jim. And this is why you’re no longer in the employ of the FBI — an FBI where employees could safely say that one of the individuals they were investigating was only supported by “poor to middle class, uneducated, lazy POS.”
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