Prepare to be shocked. Regardless of what turns up in Hillary Clinton’s emails in the weeks and months to come, you won’t need to worry about the Justice Department coming along and dragging the former Secretary of State off in handcuffs. Deleting all of those emails was, in the opinion of the nation’s top cops, absolutely fine and dandy. (ABC News)
The Justice Department is affirming that former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton had the right to delete personal emails from her private server.
Government lawyers made the assertion in a court filing this week in a public records lawsuit filed by Judicial Watch, an advocacy group. The legal filing says “there is no question” that Clinton could have deleted personal emails without agency supervision and could have done so even if she’d been using a government server.
Some additional coverage at Buzzfeed turns up this nugget. (Emphasis added)
The back-and-forth over the preservation order, as part of a narrow FOIA case, does not address the classification issues that still command sustained political coverage about Clinton.
But in terms of the email submission itself, the lawyers argue that, without reason to believe that Clinton was not honest and forthcoming in selecting and turning over her federal records, no government agency would be required to “recover deleted material based on unfounded speculation that responsive information had been deleted.” Such was the case with Clinton, the lawyers say.
That’s a fairly amazing argument summed up in only a few words. On the one hand they offer a nod to the fact that Clinton repeatedly lied about sending and receiving classified data on this account. (Classified? Why would you think that satellite photos of North Korean nuclear installations were classified?) But in the very next breath they argue that retention of all of the emails to sort out what was or wasn’t of value was not required because there was no reason to believe that Clinton was not honest and forthcoming.
The mind doth boggle.
Say… I wonder if the IRS would be willing to allow me to go through all of my tax documents, decide which ones were “relevant” and just toss the rest in the old burn barrel? I mean, there’s no reason to think I wasn’t being honest and forthcoming, so pesky little details such as those should be left to my discretion. Even more to the point, if something of interest to the police takes place on my property and it’s captured by my security cameras, I suppose I can decide which footage is relevant and worthy of retention. This is truly wild.
I’m sure it’s just my suspicious nature cropping up again, but doesn’t it seem like there are some folks in the Justice Department who prefer to take a decidedly hands off approach when it comes to Clinton? It was only this week when we discovered that they had been handed a case which seemed to clearly argue that Clinton’s aide Huma Abedin was going down for embezzlement, but they decided that prosecuting her would be more trouble than it was worth. One has to wonder just how far Clinton can push her luck before their interests are roused to the point of taking action.