Former FBI Director James Comey said former Attorney General Loretta Lynch directed him to call the Hillary Clinton email probe a “matter,” not an investigation.
He claimed the request “confused and concerned” him and led him to the decision he needed to make his independent announcement last July to not recommend criminal charges. He said another deciding factor was reports about a secret meeting on a tarmac at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport between Bill Clinton and then-Attorney General Lynch.
“It gave me the impression the attorney general was willing to align the way we talk with a political campaign,” Mr. Comey said. “That gave me a very queazy feeling.”
The testimony confirms a critical piece of information in an exclusive inside look at the Clinton email probe on People’s Pundit Daily. On May 11, PPD reported:
The story told to PPD must be retold in the proper context.
In 2015, the FBI received a criminal referral from the Department of Justice (DOJ) after the House Select Committee on Benghazi discovered Mrs. Clinton had used personal servers to end-round public records-keeping laws. According to sources, the referral was sent to the Bureau along with strict private instructions to refer to the probe as a “matter,” not as a criminal investigation.
The career investigators at the Bureau immediately took notice. Their radars went off.
But Mr. Comey made it clear he wanted these instructions followed. In what some had perceived as an effort to appease their objections, he made his first disclosure blunder. He told reporters last summer the FBI wasn’t conducting a “security inquiry,” as Mrs. Clinton repeatedly told the American public.
However, that same reporting, based on the same sources, found other reasons Mr. Comey decided to hold that press conference and do what Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosentein describe as overstepping his authority.