House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) told reporters Tuesday he was seriously disappointed by FBI Director James Comey’s decision not to recommend criminal charges against Hillary Clinton, the presumptive Democratic nominee for president.
“To me, this is still very troubling,” McCarthy said. The majority leader did not have official or unofficial notice of Comey’s decision prior to hearing it for the first time today when the director made the announcement shortly before noon. “I am just now hearing about it and I will have a fuller comment later.”
McCarthy questioned the precedent this recommendation sets for the future: “If this is the bar of how we move forward, how about other individuals that may take the same actions? There are many questions.”
McCarthy said Clinton behaved recklessly in the handling of her electronic correspondence. He also said that the Secretary of State’s recent statements about her emails being free of classified information were not true, since the FBI director said there were in fact 110 emails with classified information.
“There is no way of knowing that her servers were not breached by foreign entities or anyone else, because the protections were not there,” he said.
The majority leader said he did not think it was appropriate that President Bill Clinton met with Attorney General Loretta Lynch June 27 aboard Lynch’s plane in Phoenix, Ariz., while this decision was pending.
But, McCarthy said he was not ready to call for congressional investigations into the Clinton-Lynch tarmac meeting, saying, “I haven’t put enough thought into it.”
“The Democrats? I hear them saying the same thing. No one thinks it was an appropriate time for those two to have met. This is not about politics. This is about the safety and judgement of somebody in government, being the secretary of state and others in that process,” he said.
The Californian said he was not in a position to disagree with the director.
“I don’t have the facts,” he said. “I didn’t interview her. I leave that to the FBI. That’s the role of the FBI.”