FBI’s top lawyer believed Hillary Clinton should face charges, but was talked out of it

Not surprised.

FBI’s top lawyer believed Hillary Clinton should face charges, but was talked out of it

For most of the past three years, the FBI has tried to portray its top leadership as united behind ex-Director James Comey's decision not to pursue criminal charges against Hillary Clinton for transmitting classified information over her insecure, private email server.

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The revelation is contained in testimony Baker gave to House investigators last year. His testimony has not been publicly released, but I was permitted to review a transcript.

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"So, I had that belief initially after reviewing, you know, a large binder of her emails that had classified information in them," he said. "And I discussed it internally with a number of different folks, and eventually became persuaded that charging her was not appropriate because we could not establish beyond a reasonable doubt that - we, the government, could not establish beyond a reasonable doubt that - she had the intent necessary to violate (the law)."

Asked when he was persuaded to change his mind, Baker said: "Pretty late in the process, because we were arguing about it, I think, up until the end."

Baker made clear that he did not like the activity Clinton had engaged in: "My original belief after - well, after having conducted the investigation and towards the end of it, then sitting down and reading a binder of her materials - I thought that it was alarming, appalling, whatever words I said, and argued with others about why they thought she shouldn't be charged."

https://thehill.com/opinion/white-house/430881-fbis-top-lawyer-believed-...

Wonder who it was who finally ‘convinced’ him. And to be honest, I don’t believe him anymore than I do the rest of those jackals.

But the admission of how there REALLY were plenty of secret docs is interesting.

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Pricknick's picture

to be the queen.

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7 users have voted.

Regardless of the path in life I chose, I realize it's always forward, never straight.

snoopydawg's picture

She deliberately made the decision to use her private email server for various reasons including not having to abide by the freedom of information act and so that people who did not have security clearances could access her emails. The law is very clear on how people who have security clearances should have to handle classified information. Nope. If Baker and others saw that she had sent classified emails through her private email server then she broke the law. Period.

"So, I had that belief initially after reviewing, you know, a large binder of her emails that had classified information in them," he said. "And I discussed it internally with a number of different folks, and eventually became persuaded that charging her was not appropriate because we could not establish beyond a reasonable doubt that - we, the government, could not establish beyond a reasonable doubt that - she had the intent necessary to violate (the law)."

This puts to rest that she didn't send classified information through her server as people who believe that she is innocent like to say.

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Damn right her emails!

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I'm sure that the guy who took a picture of the inside of his submarine would have thought to say that he didn't intend to break the naval laws. Yup? Grade A BS!

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25 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

Bisbonian's picture

@snoopydawg . If you go over 25 mph in a school zone, you get a ticket. If you park in a no parking zone, you get a ticket. It's the same with Security information. If I reveal to you some of the classified information I was given access to, I am guilty of breaking the law...period.

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20 users have voted.

"I’m a human being, first and foremost, and as such I’m for whoever and whatever benefits humanity as a whole.” —Malcolm X

gulfgal98's picture

@Bisbonian I always thought that the intent excuse was very weak. If I broke the same law, I would be rotting away in prison right now even if I did not intend to break that law.

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13 users have voted.

"I don't want to run the empire, I want to bring it down!" ~Dr. Cornel West

"There is no instance of a nation benefitting from prolonged warfare." Sun Tzu

"Propaganda is one hell of a drug." Abby Martin

"Politicians are cowards." Mike Gravel

Bisbonian's picture

@gulfgal98 , before being issued the clearance, and you are supposed to know what you are doing. Of course, Hillary skipped and pencil-whipped the training...

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9 users have voted.

"I’m a human being, first and foremost, and as such I’m for whoever and whatever benefits humanity as a whole.” —Malcolm X

@gulfgal98 law that is broken that determines whether intent is relevant or not.

For example, fraud convictions require intent. The law that HRC violated requires intent. (or scienter)

And I don't see how going through the hoops of setting up your own internal server at your house, etc, rather than using the official government provided technology wouldn't indicate intent.

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9 users have voted.

dfarrah

Amanda Matthews's picture

@dfarrah

And I don't see how going through the hoops of setting up...

Exactly!

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3 users have voted.

I'm tired of this back-slapping "Isn't humanity neat?" bullshit. We're a virus with shoes, okay? That's all we are. - Bill Hicks

Politics is the entertainment branch of industry. - Frank Zappa

gulfgal98's picture

@snoopydawg What a weak excuse for letting her get off. She either intended to break the law because she has always seen herself above the law or she is the dumbest person ever to hold such a high office.

From all the information that has been made public, her intent to circumvent the law was clearly there from the first day she became SoS. She fought against transparency as Secretary of State. She did everything she could to ensure that there was no documentation of her email correspondence while serving as SoS. And only a willfully blind person would fail to see why she was hiding those emails. To characterize it as carelessness is insulting to the American people who paid their taxes and deserve to have the right to FOIA and review the correspondence she had while SoS. Thank goodness, Judicial Watch persisted.

We must remember that there was money to be made from the selling of information. And much of that money was laundered through the Clinton Foundation. The Mafia can only envy the scam operation that the Clintons were running.

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13 users have voted.

"I don't want to run the empire, I want to bring it down!" ~Dr. Cornel West

"There is no instance of a nation benefitting from prolonged warfare." Sun Tzu

"Propaganda is one hell of a drug." Abby Martin

"Politicians are cowards." Mike Gravel

dystopian's picture

Is it too late? Can't we still do it?

Hillary should have faced charges, but it would have meant Obama was guilty, and it would have blown their whole 2016 plans for America. Moar woar. The whole "intent" thing is pure BS. And not something an FBI director determines or announces publicly, but something judges and juries decide. She willfully intentionally did not take the basic 101 SOS security course the commander in chief was supposed to make sure she took and abided by. They both knew it. She went on to lose state secrets to people considered enemies of the state. This egregious act has been characterized as "but oh the emails" by idiots that think others are as ignorant as they. Yet still she was Obama's recommendation for us. Cause he cared so much about the countries future, safety and security.

Ooops, sorry.

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18 users have voted.

We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.
Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.
both - Albert Einstein

snoopydawg's picture

His boss, Comey, announced on July 5, 2016, that he would not recommend criminal charges. He did so without consulting the Department of Justice (DOJ), a decision the department's inspector general (IG) later concluded was misguided and likely usurped the power of the attorney general to make prosecutorial decisions. Comey has said, in retrospect, he accepts that finding but took the actions he did because he thought "they were in the country's best interest."

Okay, if Comey went outside the lines and made that decision without being the person who usually decides these things then why didn't the IG overrule him? The status of limitations hasn't passed yet so she can still be charged and prosecuted under the espionage act which Obama loved to try people with. As the article states Graham or Barr could still prosecute her which IIRC Trump said he was going to do.

Baker's account also shed light on revelations I first reported more than a year ago that the original draft of Comey's announcement concluded Clinton had been "grossly negligent" in handling her classified emails. That is the term in espionage statutes for criminality, but the language later was softened.

On what grounds was that done? Wasn't it Strzok who changed the wording of the report because that would make it so that she wasn't charged? Yep. This has stinky fish smell all over it.

And as Bisbonian says, breaking the law is just that. Breaking the law. How many people didn't see the no parking sign, and came out before the cop wrote the ticket, but got it anyway after saying that you didn't mean to park in a no parking zone? She knew the rules. She broke them anyway. She too broke the emoluments clause during her tenure as SOS when she put her foundation in the way of her duties. Bad Hillary!

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18 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

Amanda Matthews's picture

@snoopydawg
freaking BILLION DOLLARS to lose.

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4 users have voted.

I'm tired of this back-slapping "Isn't humanity neat?" bullshit. We're a virus with shoes, okay? That's all we are. - Bill Hicks

Politics is the entertainment branch of industry. - Frank Zappa

snoopydawg's picture

@Amanda Matthews

Her campaign. There's supposed to have been a lawsuit filed on this, yet I can't find anything current on it. Oh well..if a Pakistani couple could hack into democrats' computers and many other nefarious things then why should we be concerned that Hillary broke election laws? Moving on... skedaddling.

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3 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

Raggedy Ann's picture

laws are written for the 99%. Her heinous broke no law written for the 1%.

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14 users have voted.

Women are human beings, not prey.
(I forgot where I read it although it might have been in The Intercept)

If nothing else, her treatment of classified info was incredibly careless. Forget the private server. Hillary's assistant was sending everything home to Weiner for him to copy, after Democrats had forced Weiner was forced out of the House. I can't believe that, during some hearing or other, I saw Senator Graham smile and say something like "I think we can all agree that should not have happened." Someone agreed with him and then they both LEFT IT AT THAT.

I demand to know who allowed George Carlin to pass away.

ETA. And the coordination between the Clinton Foundation and the Department of State should have put all three Clintons in a federal pen along with anyone who knowingly aided and abetted them. Maybe the son in law, too, but I'd have to do some research before I say anything definite about him.

Two Americas and Hillary and I are not in the same one. In my America, laws exist, right along with punishment for breaking them.

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15 users have voted.
detroitmechworks's picture

It would be really embarrassing for her to have to execute the FBI for treason after she became president. Americans don't like openly destroying their political enemies.

/snark

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8 users have voted.

I do not pretend I know what I do not know.