President Donald Trump tweeted on Tuesday that there is a double-standard in play regarding the government’s treatment of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her former top aide Huma Abedin versus those guilty of far lesser offenses in the military, including a Navy sailor.
Trump wrote that Abedin should go to “jail” for forwarding classified information, including emails that contained passwords to government systems to her private Yahoo email account, The Washington Times reported.
“Crooked Hillary Clinton’s top aid, Huma Abedin, has been accused of disregarding basic security protocols,” the president tweeted.
He added, “She put Classified Passwords into the hands of foreign agents. Remember sailors pictures on submarine? Jail! Deep State Justice Dept must finally act? Also on Comey & others.”
Former Navy sailor Kristian Saucier “pleaded guilty to unlawfully retaining national defense information by taking the six photos inside the USS Alexandria with his cellphone in 2009, when he was 22 years old and working as a machinist mate in Connecticut,” The Washington Examiner reported.
The sailor, who served 11 years in the military, said the pictures were an innocent keepsake. One of the pictures was of the submarine’s nuclear reactor.
The photos were deemed “confidential” after they surfaced, when someone found Saucier’s phone in the trash.
Prosecutors argued Saucier’s conduct could have harmed the country, though offered no evidence it actually did, according to The Examiner.
The sailor was convicted of mishandling classified information and served a one year sentence in jail. Additionally, Saucier was dishonorably discharged from the Navy, meaning he is ineligible for veterans’ benefits and making it far more difficult to obtain gainful employment as a civilian.
He now works as a trash collector in Vermont.
“The home where Saucier lives with his wife and two-year-old daughter is in foreclosure and credit card debt collectors call frequently,” The Examiner reported. “His cars were repossessed while he was in prison and the family has a payment plan for their electricity bill.”
Saucier told the paper that he appreciated Trump’s tweet.
“Obviously with his tweet today he still recognizes my case, so hopefully he will do something about it. I think my family and I have been punished enough,” Saucier said. “I made an innocent mistake as a kid, it wasn’t planned like Hillary Clinton and them blatantly flouting the law.”
Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., grilled former FBI director James Comey on this very point days after the nation’s top law enforcement official announced Clinton would not be prosecuted in July 2016.
Gowdy contended there is a “double-tracked justice system” being exercised by the FBI in the case of what Comey described as Clinton’s “extremely careless” handling of “very sensitive, highly classified information.”
He observed, “If you are a private in the Army and you email yourself classified information, you will be kicked out. But if you are Hillary Clinton and you seek a promotion to commander-in-chief, you will not be.”
Trump often pointed to the example of former CIA Director David Petraeus, who allowed his biographer/mistress to review classified information for her book about him. She served in the military at the time as an Army intelligence officer with security clearance.
None-the-less, the celebrated general was prosecuted and ultimately pleaded guilty to the mishandling of classified information, leaving his life in “ruins,” Trump said.
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