Hamilton: Comey is horned by a dilemma
June 20, 2017
When a supposedly smart lawyer such as former FBI Director, James Comey, ends up being disliked by so many people of so many different political persuasions, you have to ask: How did that happen? Appointed by former President Obama, confirmed by the U.S. Senate to serve a ten-year term —unless dismissed by the President of the United States — James B. Comey was set for a decade of service. But then, on July 5, 2016, Comey held a highly unusual press conference.
Because of the "presumption of innocence," the FBI tries to keep secret the existence of a criminal investigation and, only after an investigation is complete, does the FBI hand the completed investigation over to the Department of Justice for disposition. It is not the role of the FBI to tell the Department of Justice what to do.
So why would a supposedly experienced lawyer such as James Comey reveal that a criminal investigation involving Democrat presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, had been on-going, reveal Mrs. Clinton acts of commission and omission as uncovered by FBI agents, and then usurp the role of the Department of Justice by declaring because Candidate Clinton did not "intend" any harm that he was recommending no charges be filed against Candidate Clinton?
Why? Director Comey was caught between the proverbial rock and a hard place. On June 27, 2016, former President Bill Clinton and Attorney General Lynch met privately on board Lynch's government jet. Candidate Clinton proclaims the FBI was conducting an "inquiry," not an investigation. Attorney General Loretta Lynch calls Director Comey to her office and tells Comey that Comey is looking into a "matter," not conducting a criminal investigation. Reports of President Obama using a pseudonym to exchange classified e-mails via Secretary Clinton's private, non-secure server were surfacing. Obviously, dangerous ground for someone who serves at the pleasure of the president and would like to keep his job.
A logical assumption is that Director Comey was aware of the polls predicting Hillary Clinton would be the next President of the United States and the official who could keep him or fire him. So, what was Comey, an FBI director caught in the crosshairs of the president, the attorney general, Candidate Clinton, and his own agents, to do? Ergo: Comey's dilemma.
What we do know is that Comey's press conference of July 5, 2016, went against previous FBI procedures and tradition. Did Director Comey do the right thing or not? We report. You decide.
Initially, Director Comey's July 5, 2016, closing of the Clinton "matter" pleased the Democrats and upset the Republicans. Then, new information caused Director Comey to reopen the "matter" on October 28, 2016. That pleased the Republicans and angered the Democrats, albeit Comey re-closed the "matter" almost immediately.
But wait. Maybe the decisive harm to the Democrat's presidential hopes occurred on July 5, 2016, when Comey "cleared" Candidate Clinton of wrong-doing. Had Mrs. Clinton been indicted in early July, there might still have been time for the Democrats to nominate a candidate who could have defeated Candidate Donald J. Trump. Think about it. We suggest. You decide.
Nationally syndicated columnist, William Hamilton, is a laureate of the Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame, the Nebraska Aviation Hall of Fame, the Colorado Aviation Hall of Fame, the Oklahoma University Army ROTC Wall of Fame, and is a recipient of the University of Nebraska 2015 Alumni Achievement Award. He was educated at the University of Oklahoma, the George Washington University, the U.S Naval War College, the University of Nebraska, and Harvard University. For more, see: http://www.central-view.com.