— CNN (@CNN) October 29, 2016
On Saturday, Hillary Clinton struck back at the timing of FBI Director James Comey’s letter about her newly discovered emails. Comey had issued a Friday memo, which noted how the emails were revealed during an unrelated investigation, and the FBI wanted to determine whether any classified information was discussed within the messages. The emails in question were found on Anthony Weiner’s computer after Huma Abedin had used the machine for some of her communications with Clinton. At the above rally in Daytona Beach, Fla., Clinton didn’t mince words:
“It is pretty strange to put something like that out with such little information right before an election. In fact, it’s not just strange; it is unprecedented and it is deeply troubling.”
Clinton had already addressed the matter on Friday, when she called upon Comey to “explain this issue in question, whatever it is, without any delay.” She expressed confidence that the outcome would be no different than the July decision that saw Comey recommending no charges be brought by the Department of Justice (though he did call Clinton out as “extremely careless”).
This Saturday speech follows news that top DOJ officials disagreed with Comey’s release of the letter. He reportedly acted against Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s concerns about publicly commenting upon an investigation less than two weeks before an election. In doing so, Comey has been criticized for breaking “the tradition of acting with added discretion around elections.”
In addition, Clinton’s senior staff slammed the content of Comey’s letter as “short on facts, long on innuendo,” which could potentially sway some voters with little time to spare in this election. Clinton Campaign Chair John Podesta elaborated further: “By providing selective information, he’s allowed partisans to distort and exaggerate to inflict maximum political damage.” For his part, Comey has maintained that he released the letter in conjunction with his prior agreement to keep Congress informed of any developments:
“We don’t ordinarily tell Congress about ongoing investigations, but here I feel an obligation to do so given that I testified repeatedly in recent months that our investigation was completed. I also think it would be misleading to the American people were we not to supplement the record.”
Meanwhile, Yahoo is exclusively reporting that the FBI doesn’t have a warrant (as of Saturday night) to read Abedin’s messages in question: “We do not have a warrant. Discussions are under way [between the FBI and the Justice Department] as to the best way to move forward.” So, the FBI doesn’t even know what’s in these emails, and they may not be new.
You can watch Clinton’s full Daytona Speech rally speech — in which she calls out Donald Trump for spreading lies about her email — below. Trump openly celebrated the news of Comey’s letter by declaring Clinton to be guilty of “criminal action.” In this speech, she accuses Trump of telling lies “to confuse, mislead, and discourage the American people.”