Trump is facing impeachment and desperate for a distraction. Luckily, his State Department has just given him one: reopening the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails.
Never mind the fact that Clinton was cleared twice by the FBI in 2016.
The State Department is currently focusing on as many as 130 officials who emailed Clinton during her time as secretary of state. This includes even those in low-level jobs whose emails were simply forwarded to Clinton.
Former officials and employees are also being informed that emails they sent have been retroactively deemed classified.
The probe was started in 2017 shortly after Trump appointed his first secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, but then appeared to go fallow. It was revived in August of this year when former employees and official started receiving letters about emails sent years ago.
Current Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is likely quite amenable to the probe. He was fixated on Benghazi as a member of the House of Representatives and aggressively went after Clinton over the issue.
This is all part of what both current and former officials call “an extraordinary crackdown” by an administration which has “left the security of its own information vulnerable to foreign surveillance.” The State Department has insisted that this is standard protocol and “nothing to do with who is in the White House.”
That claim is questionable at best. The current occupant of the White House routinely violates classified information protocols. He gave classified information to the Russian ambassador one day after firing former FBI head James Comey. He reportedly even rattled the CIA so much they had to extract a high-level spy from Russia for fear Trump would blow their cover.
And the Ukraine scandal that led to the current impeachment proceedings against him hinges, in part, on Trump officials improperly storing material on a classified server to hide the content of Trump’s phone calls with world leaders.
Trump isn’t the only one in this administration that has trouble with classified information. At least seven Trump administration officials have used their personal email accounts for official communications. Notably, that includes both son-in-law Jared Kushner and daughter Ivanka.
Specifically, Ivanka was found to have sent hundreds of emails about official government business to and from her personal email account. And Kushner was found to have used chat apps like WhatsApp to conduct official business, reportedly including conversing with foreign leaders like Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
Published with permission of The American Independent.
IMAGE: Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (left) and President Donald Trump (center).