NEW YORK CITY, New York — A pair of reports out on Wednesday evening from two of the nation’s biggest broadcasters brings gloomy news for the already hurting presidential campaign of Democratic nominee Hillary Rodham Clinton: The FBI has been “aggressively investigating” the Clinton Foundation for a year.
All of this comes as a third report, from the Wall Street Journal, walks through how “secret recordings” have “fueled” the FBI’s criminal investigation into the Clinton Foundation—a separate but parallel probe from the Hillary Clinton email scandal.
Pamela Brown, CNN’s Justice Department correspondent, announced on air on Wednesday:
My colleague Evan Perez and I have spoken to more than a dozen officials and agents and have learned that agents in the FBI wanted to aggressively investigate the Clinton Foundation several months ago. Earlier in the year, the Justice Department told the FBI essentially you don’t have enough evidence here for predication to get more tools such as warrants and subpoenas. ‘Go back and see what else you can dig up.’ We are told that after the Clinton email probe initially wrapped up in July that those agents wanted to continue their work on the case and again DOJ said ‘you don’t have enough evidence here to really investigate’ and so things are sort of on hold and this has sort of caused tensions to flare in the FBI and the Department of Justice. Some of those agents feel like those roadblocks are politically-driven.
WATCH PAMELA BROWN’S CNN REPORT ON CLINTON FOUNDATION CORRUPTION PROBE:
Similarly, over on Fox News, Special Report anchor Bret Baier dropped another bombshell on Wednesday night:
Two separate sources with intimate knowledge of the FBI investigations into the Clinton emails and the Clinton Foundation tell Fox the following: The investigation into the Clinton Foundation, looking into possible pay-for-play interaction between Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the Foundation has been going on for more than a year led by the White Collar Crime Division, Public Corruption Branch of the Criminal Investigative Division of the FBI. The Clinton Foundation investigation is a ‘very high priority.’ Agents have interviewed and re-interviewed multiple people about the Foundation case and even before the WikiLeaks dumps these sources said agents had collected a great deal of evidence. Pressed on that, one source said ‘a lot of it, and there is an avalanche of new information coming in every day—some of it from WikiLeaks, some from new emails.’ The agents are actively and aggressively pursuing this case and they will be going back and interviewing the same people again, some for the third time. As a result of the limited immunity deals to top aides including Cheryl Mills and Heather Samuelson, the Justice Department had tentatively agreed that the Justice Department would destroy those laptops after a narrow review. We are told definitively that has not happened and those devices are currently in the FBI field office here in Washington, D.C., and are being exploited. The source points out any immunity deal is null and void if any subject has lied at any point in the investigation.
Baier also had new information on the investigation—a separate but parallel criminal probe—into Hillary Clinton’s emails. Baier reported:
Meanwhile, the classified email investigation is being run by the National Security Division of the FBI. They are currently combing through former Democratic Congressman Anthony Weiner’s laptop. They have found emails they believe came from Hillary Clinton’s server and that also appear to be new—as in, not duplicates. Whether they contain classified material or not is not yet known, but will likely be known soon.
WATCH BRET BAIER ANNOUNCE THE BOMBSHELLS ON FOX NEWS
The Wall Street Journal on Wednesday night also broke a big story on this front.
“Secret Recordings Fueled FBI Feud in Clinton Probe,” read the headline from the Wall Street Journal’s Devlin Barrett and Christopher Matthews, with a sub-headline reading: “Agents thought they had enough material to merit aggressively pursuing investigation into Clinton Foundation.”
“Secret recordings of a suspect talking about the Clinton Foundation fueled an internal battle between FBI agents who wanted to pursue the case and corruption prosecutors who viewed the statements as worthless hearsay, people familiar with the matter said,” Barrett and Matthews wrote.
In the wake of Breitbart News Editor at Large and Government Accountability Institute President Peter Schweizer’s bombshell spring 2015 book Clinton Cash, the Wall Street Journal reported that FBI agents “using informants and recordings from unrelated corruption investigations, thought they had found enough material to merit aggressively pursuing the investigation into the foundation.”
Agents wanted to pursue a more aggressive investigation, they reported, but officials at the politically tainted Department of Justice wouldn’t let them. The Wall Street Journal reporters wrote:
Starting in February and continuing today, investigators from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and public-corruption prosecutors became increasingly frustrated with each other, as often happens within and between departments. At the center of the tension stood the U.S. attorney for Brooklyn, Robert Capers, who some at the FBI came to view as exacerbating the problems by telling each side what it wanted to hear, these people said. Through a spokeswoman, Mr. Capers declined to comment. The roots of the dispute lie in a disagreement over the strength of the case, these people said, which broadly centered on whether Clinton Foundation contributors received favorable treatment from the State Department under Hillary Clinton. Senior officials in the Justice Department and the FBI didn’t think much of the evidence, while investigators believed they had promising leads their bosses wouldn’t let them pursue, they said.
But more importantly, FBI agents actually presented the case to prosecutors—after which they were told by officials in the politically controlled DOJ to “stand down.” Barrett and Matthews wrote:
As 2015 came to a close, the FBI and Justice Department had a general understanding that neither side would take major action on Clinton Foundation matters without meeting and discussing it first. In February, a meeting was held in Washington among FBI officials, public-integrity prosecutors and Leslie Caldwell, the head of the Justice Department’s criminal division. Prosecutors from the Eastern District of New York—Mr. Capers’ office—didn’t attend, these people said. The public-integrity prosecutors weren’t impressed with the FBI presentation, people familiar with the discussion said. ‘The message was, ‘We’re done here,’ ‘ a person familiar with the matter said. Justice Department officials became increasingly frustrated that the agents seemed to be disregarding or disobeying their instructions. Following the February meeting, officials at Justice Department headquarters sent a message to all the offices involved to ‘stand down,’ a person familiar with the matter said.
Most damning for the Clintons, however, is the revelation that according to the Wall Street Journal report, even FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe confirmed that the FBI investigation into the Clinton Foundation was a “validly predicated investigation” to some people at the Justice Department who tried to shut down the case.