FBI to reopen Clinton email investigation in final days of campaign

Carlos Barria—Reuters
First lady Michelle Obama (L) and U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton wave after a campaign rally in Winston-Salem

WASHINGTON, D.C. — With just 11 days to go until the election, FBI Director James Comey announced Friday that he is re-opening the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails and private server.”In connection with an unrelated case, the FBI has learned of the existence of emails that appear to be pertinent to the investigation…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,” said Comey in a letter to lawmakers.According to the New York Times the unrelated case is the investigation into illicit text messages former Congressman Anthony Weiner sent to an underage girl from Gaston County, N.C. The FBI confiscated electronic devices shared by Weiner and estranged wife/Hillary Clinton aide, Huma Abedin, subsequently discovering the questionable emails relating to Clinton.The news sent Wall Street into a tailspin, posting its largest single-day slide since June at the closing bell on Friday. U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Paul Ryan also renewed calls for U.S. intelligence officials to stop giving Hillary Clinton classified briefing typically given to presidential candidates.”This decision, long overdue, is the result of her reckless use of a private email server, and her refusal to be forthcoming with federal investigators,” Ryan said.The FBI spent about a year investigating Clinton’s use of an unauthorized private email server for her work as U.S. secretary of state between 2009 and 2013 after it emerged that there were classified government secrets in some of her emails.The government forbids transmitting classified information outside secure channels. In July, Comey said there was evidence that Clinton and her staff may have broken laws, but that no reasonable prosecutor would bring charges. Now, that appears to be changing as more emails and information come to light.”In connection with an unrelated case, the FBI has learned of the existence of emails that appear to be pertinent to the investigation,” Comey wrote in the letter released on Friday. He provided no further details about the nature of the emails or the other case.The news comes on the heels of new Wikileaks emails released show that campaign manager John Podesta was blindsided by the depth of the Associated Press story that revealed her private server.”Who told Hillary she could use a private server,” he asked in email. “and has that person been drawn and quartered?”The Wikileak emails also indicated that President Obama may have known of the existence of the server based on emails that passed though his Blackberry. Still, First Lady Michelle Obama was front and center at rallies with Clinton during her visit to Winston-Salem and N.C. A&T on Thursday. Clinton, a former first lady who lost the 2008 Democratic nomination to then-U.S. Senator Barack Obama before becoming his secretary of state, praised Michelle Obama for standing up for the rights of girls and women worldwide, in a thinly-veiled dig at her opponent Republican nominee Donald Trump.”I wish I didn’t have to say this. … But indeed, dignity and respect for women and girls is also on the ballot in this election,” Clinton told an estimated 11,000 people at a N.C. A&T rally.The resurrection of the email issue, which has dogged Clinton’s campaign from the start, led Republican Donald Trump’s campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway to tweet that “a great day in our campaign just got even better,” and Trump to call for investigation of President Obama as well.