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IG report: Comey broke Protocol
Comey’s decisions have had a disastrous impact on the 2016 campaign; Catherine Herridge reports from the Ministry of justice.
Justice Department inspector General Michael Horowitz, in a comprehensive and in-times report on the handling of the Hillary Clinton E-Mail investigation, destroy unusual text message from a top FBI suspended officials vowing to “stop,” Donald Trump — during the call, then-Director James Comey’s actions in the case of “undue.”
The long-awaited report Thursday afternoon, was released, almost 600 pages and looked at the actions of the numerous characters that played an important role in the Ministry of justice and the FBI in the investigation. It is the product of an 18-month report, with the involvement of dozens of witness interviews and hundreds of thousands of documents.
But one of the most beautiful insights concerns the texts between agent Peter Strzok and office-colleague Lisa page.
According to the report, page Strzok texted in August 2016 and said: “[the trombone] not to ever become President, right? Right?!”
“No. No he is not. We will finish it,” Strzok answered.
Strzok was a senior investigator in the Clinton case, and later the Russia-investigation, before notification of the assignment.
“In particular, we were concerned about text messages exchanged, the said FBI Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok and Lisa page, Special Counsel, Deputy Director, that, potentially, specified, or created the appearance that the investigative decisions were influenced by bias or improper considerations,” the IG report.
Nevertheless, the report said, investigators found “no evidence that the conclusions of the prosecutors were concerned that bias or other improper considerations.”
Months, Horowitz revealed other anti-Trump texts between the two FBI officials who were in a relationship. The “stop” trump the text goes even further, and fuelled claims from the White house that the office was biased against him.
Press-Secretary Sarah Sanders said the report “reaffirmed the President’s assumptions about Comey’s behavior and the political bias of some of the members of the FBI.”
The FBI, in its response to the criticism, said the inspector general “found no evidence of a connection, the political views of the employees with the specific investigative decisions.”
But the general said the-inspector, five employees has called for the investigation, whether the messages against the FBI, the Offence code and penalty guidelines.
Three takeaways from the IG report
Horowitz’s study looked at a variety of other allegations, including the question of whether it was inadmissible for Comey to recommend a public notice against an indictment on the Clinton E-Mail arrangement, while calling their actions “extremely reckless.”
“We have found that it was exceptional and undue to hide for Comey and his intentions of his superior, the attorney General and Deputy attorney General, to prevent the for the approved purpose that you told him to make the statement, and instruct his subordinates in the FBI, to do the same,” says Horowitz of the report.
CLICK TO READ THE FULL REPORT
Comey responded to the report on Thursday Via Twitter that he believes that the “conclusions are appropriate, although I don’t agree with some of them.”
I respect the DOJ IG office, which is the reason why I pushed you to do this review. The conclusions are appropriate, although I do not agree with some. People of good faith, an example can be seen, the wireless situation is different. I pray none of the Directors faces. Thanks to all the IG people for the hard work.
— James Comey (@Comey) June 14, 2018
“People can see in good faith, an unprecedented situation differently,” Comey said.
Trump fired Comey in may 2017, citing the Clinton-E-Mail-probe — although he was cited later on the Russia-probe as well.
The report also faults the FBI – and specifically Strzok – for action not quickly enough, after the discovery of the Clinton-E-Mails on the laptop of the ex-Rep. Anthony Weiner, who in the fall of 2016. The report says concerted Strzok, and other argument that the investigation was a “higher priority” to the time when the review of the laptop.
“We found this explanation is not convincing and concerning,” the report said, noting that the FBI had a search warrant by the end of September, but waited more than a month to do this-ultimately, it is a again the case days before the election. Clinton has long said the announcement contributed to their defeat. But the report also suggested that Strzok, ironically, may have acted out of bias for Clinton in slow-walking the laptop.
On the basis of the Strzok SMS messages, the report said, “we decided that We trust that this decision of Strzok was free from bias.”
In the report, Horowitz also criticized then-attorney General Loretta Lynch, the infamous meeting on an Arizona tarmac with former President Bill Clinton a few days before the FBI decided it would not recommend criminal charges against Hillary Clinton.
The report said, investigators “found no evidence” that an “inappropriate discussion.” But it was determined that Lynch ‘ s “error, which occurs the problem, created by former President Clinton’ s meeting attendance and actions that cut the visit short is an error in judgment.”
House oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy, R-S. C., said in a statement the report shows “alarming and destructive levels of the animus displayed by top officials at the FBI.”
Other Republican lawmakers pounced on the newly revealed Strzok text.
“In Louisiana, we call this tendency, which we call the target,” sen. John Kennedy, R-La., said on Fox News’ “outnumbered Overtime” on Thursday.
Strzok Robert Mueller were assigned to counsel is a special probe, but since it was assigned. Page resigned later.
A lawyer for Strzok, Aitan Goelman, denied the agent’s personal political views influenced his work. “His dedication to the unbiased service, a fact that would be said, generally, of the thousands of people who have worked with Pete during his 26 years of service in the FBI, and the U.S. army,” Goelman.
The final report could have an impact on some in the DOJ and FBI.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a statement that the report “shows a number of serious mistakes from the top management of the Department of Justice and the FBI, during the previous administration.”
In an interview with The Hill’s new web-show “Rising” on Wednesday, sessions said the possibility of “termination” on the table for the accused of serious misconduct. Some of the key figures, but have already been fired or left the government.
A related criticism has already put the former top FBI official Andrew McCabe in legal difficulties. The Ministry of justice’s internal watchdog sent a criminal referral for McCabe in April to the U.S. attorney’s office in Washington.
This was in response to Horowitz’s determination that McCabe passes a lie leaked information to the press and later, over to Comey, and Federal investigators, prompting sessions to fire him in March. The Washington Post reported that Comey has asked the U.S. attorney’s office as part of a McCabe-examination.
In its report on Thursday, Horowitz, the circumstances reviewed, whether McCabe should have recused himself earlier from the Clinton probe, because of his family ties to the Democratic party.
McCabe’s wife took campaign money from a group tied to then-democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a Clinton ally, during her unsuccessful run for office in Virginia in the year 2015. McCabe does not recuse himself until a week before the election in 2016.
Horowitz said McCabe “do not fully comply with his recusal in a couple of cases” in connection with the Clinton Foundation study. He also said that the FBI will appreciate the ethics of officials and lawyers “in the full extent of the potential significant effects of” McCabe and the FBI of campaign contributions to his wife’s campaign.
A lawyer McCabe, Michael Bromwich, said in a Thursday statement that “all claims that are affected by a policy direction or political influence, Mr. McCabe’s actions” and “completely unfounded.”
In a New York Times op-ed on Thursday, Comey, was not his decision to recommend prosecution of Clinton over their E-Mails during the Secretary of state.
“The report also demonstrates an overwhelming that there was no prosecutable case against Mrs. Clinton, as we already concluded,” Comey. “Although this will probably not stop to say something more, the opposite is true, this independent evaluation will be useful to thoughtful people, and an important contribution to the historical record.”
Fox News’ Catherine Herridge, Judson Berger, Bill Mears, Jake Gibson and Brooke Singman contributed to this report.
Alex Pappas is a political reporter at FoxNews.com. Follow him on Twitter at @Alex Pappas.