The State Department released approximately 3,800 documents making up the final batch of Hillary Clinton’s e-mails on Monday, marking the end of a nearly year long review and release process of roughly 55,000 pages of e-mails that Clinton turned over from the private e-mail server she maintained while serving as secretary of state.
While the end of the monthly e-mail dumps might be the source of some relief to the Clinton campaign and its supporters, it by no means signals an end to the issue that has hounded Clinton almost from the moment she announced her candidacy over a year ago.
Just last week, Attorney General Loretta Lynch told Congress that career Justice Department attorneys are working with FBI agents on a criminal investigation into Clinton’s use of the private e-mail server and the handling of classified material.
“[The Clinton e-mail] matter is being handled by career independent law enforcement agents, FBI agents as well as the career attorneys in the Department of Justice. They follow the evidence, they look at the law and they’ll make a recommendation to me when the time is appropriate,” Lynch told Congressman John Carter at the hearing last Wednesday.
While it is not possible to know exactly what charges the FBI might recommend at the conclusion of its investigation if any, LawNewz has previously detailed several of the possible legal consequences that Clinton may face based on the information currently available, including:
- Unauthorized Retention of Classified Material
- Possible “Pay-for-Play” Corruption Allegations Between the Clinton Foundation and the State Department
- Unauthorized Disclosure of Classified Information/Information Relating to the National Defense
- FBI Leveraging Clinton Aides to Testify Against Her
Despite all of this potential baggage, DNC party leaders and the majority of Democratic Party primary voters seem to be willing to support Clinton for the party’s nomination for president. If the polls on the eve of the “Super Tuesday” primaries are correct, it looks like Clinton will close door on Bernie Sanders maybe as soon as tomorrow night — all but making her the presumptive Democratic Party nominee.
In an article posted on Real Clear Politics on Monday, University of Chicago Political Science Professor Charles Lipson sums up the dilemma that Attorney General Loretta Lynch will likely face if FBI Director James Comey recommends charging Clinton once she is the party’s presidential nominee:
“If the FBI recommends felony charges, as is likely, the DOJ’s choices are damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don’t. For Loretta Lynch, it will make for a painful final year. For her party, the stakes are the presidency. For her country, they are the impartial rule of law.”
According to a Reuters report carried by Yahoo News on Monday, State Department Spokesman John Kirby told reporters a few hours ahead of the release that an additional e-mail between Clinton and President Obama was being withheld in full, bringing the total of withheld e-mails between Obama and Clinton to 19. It was also reported that at least one additional e-mail was also being withheld, in full, at the request of an unspecified law-enforcement-agency
Late on Monday Politico reported that there were no “Top Secret” email designations in the final release after intelligence agencies agreed to provisionally downgrade an e-mail related to North Korea’s nuke program to “Secret” ahead of the Monday night release.
At least 261 e-mails in the final release contained “Secret” or “Confidential” level classified information, according to Fox News. This brings the total number of classified e-mails uncovered during the Clinton e-mail review to 2,050.
We are going through the emails so stick with LawNewz for updates on this story throughout the evening.
[screengrab via shutterstock]
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