Just when it looked like Hillary Clinton was poised to win the 2016 election, the FBI has thrown a game changer into the mix. On Friday, FBI Director James Comey announced that his agency has discovered new emails related to Hillary Clinton’s mishandling of classified information that they had not previously seen.
According to the Associated Press, the newly discovered emails “did not come from her private server”, but instead were found when the FBI started going through electronic devices that belonged to top Clinton aide Huma Abedin and her husband Anthony Weiner. The FBI has been looking into messages of a sexual nature that Weiner had exchanged with a 15-year-old girl in North Carolina, and that is why they originally seized those electronic devices.
According to the Washington Post, the “emails were found on a computer used jointly by both Weiner and his wife, top Clinton aide Huma Abedin, according to a person with knowledge of the inquiry”, and according to some reports there may be “potentially thousands” of emails on the computer that the FBI did not have access to previously. Even though there are less than two weeks to go until election day, this scandal has the potential to possibly force Clinton out of the race, and if that happens could Barack Obama delay or suspend the election until a replacement candidate can be found?
Let’s take this one step at a time. On Friday, financial markets tanked when reports of these new Clinton emails hit the wires.
After recommending earlier this year that the Department of Justice not press charges against the former secretary of state, Comey said in a letter to eight congressional committee chairmen that investigators are examining newly discovered emails that “appear to be pertinent” to the email probe.
“In connection with an unrelated case, the FBI has learned of the existence of emails that appear pertinent to the investigation,” Comey wrote the chairmen. “I am writing to inform you that the investigative team briefed me on this yesterday, and I agreed that the FBI should take appropriate investigative steps designed to allow investigators to review these emails to determine whether they contain classified information, as well as to assess their importance to our investigation.”
At this point, we do not know what is contained in these emails. But without a doubt, Huma Abedin is Hillary Clinton’s closest confidant, and I have always felt that she was Clinton’s Achilles heel. Journalist Carl Bernstein (of Watergate fame) is fully convinced that the FBI would have never made this move unless something significant had already been discovered
From Real Clear Politics:
We don’t know what this means yet except that it’s a real bombshell. And it is unthinkable that the Director of the FBI would take this action lightly, that he would put this letter forth to the Congress of the United States saying there is more information out there about classified e-mails and call it to the attention of congress unless it was something requiring serious investigation. So that’s where we are…
Is it a certainty that we won’t learn before the election? I’m not sure it’s a certainty we won’t learn before the election.
One thing is, it’s possible that Hillary Clinton might want to on her own initiative talk to the FBI and find out what she can, and if she chooses to let the American people know what she thinks or knows is going on. People need to hear from her…
If the FBI has indeed found something explosive, would they actually charge her with a crime right before the election?
It is possible, but we also have to remember that government agencies (including the FBI) tend to move very, very slowly. If there are thousands of emails, it is going to take quite a while to sift through them all. And of course, Barack Obama has lots of ways that he could influence, delay or even shut down the investigation.
So those that are counting on this to be the miracle that Donald Trump needs should not count their chickens before they hatch.
But if Hillary Clinton were to be forced out of the race by this FBI investigation, the Democrats would have to decide on a new candidate, and that would take time. The following is from a U.S. News & World Report article that examined what would happen if one of the candidates was forced out of the race for some reason…