Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton seems to have settled into her latest talking points about her email scandal, professing to have owned up to her poor judgment, but maintaining what she did was “allowed at the time.” And, furthermore, that the emails she was sending and receiving were “not classified at the time.”
Well, even IF what the Democrat presidential hopeful says is true (and y’all know I’m certainly not putting any stock in Clinton’s veracity), that may not be enough to keep Clinton out of jail.
A new report released Thursday from Fox News indicates the FBI’s investigation of Hillary Clinton’s private email server is focusing on whether she violated the Espionage Act – especially the statute’s ‘gross negligence’ provisions. The law applies to ‘any document, writing, code book, signal book, sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, instrument, appliance, note, or information, relating to the national defense’ – even if it’s not considered ‘classified.’ It calls for a 10-year prison sentence.
Essentially, the question is did Clinton’s ‘gross negligence’ or serious carelessness — e.g., her use of an insecure private computer network — permit national defense information to be removed or abstracted from its proper, secure location?
And there’s more. Today, a former FBI agent suggested what President Obama said in his recent ‘60 Minutes‘ interview could be enough to land her in prison.
Via The Daily Mail:
Hillary Clinton could be prosecuted in federal court for failing to tell President Barack Obama about her private email server at the time she was running it, according to a veteran FBI agent.
Obama said flatly during a ‘60 Minutes‘ interview on Sunday that ‘No,’ he did not know Clinton sidestepped security protocols with her a home-brew email setup while she was his secretary of state.
The FBI agent who spoke with DailyMail.com has had a 20-year career in federal law enforcement and serves in a supervisory capacity in a domestic FBI field office.
He said on Friday that failing to put Obama in the loop could be enough to send her to prison for ten years.
The federal Espionage Act includes a provision that criminalizes ‘gross negligence’ by officials charged with safeguarding national defense information.
Separately, the law’s text makes a criminal of any security clearance holder who fails to notify his or her ‘superior officer’ when a breach of security occurs through such negligence.
‘If investigators conclude that the former secretary [Clinton] was criminally careless in how she approached the security of the sensitive documents in her possession, then this part of the law could be used to prosecute her,’ the agent said, on condition of anonymity.
‘”Gross negligence” just means “serious carelessness”,’ he clarified.
His voice became more deliberate and quiet when DailyMail.com asked him to address the notification clause in what is technically known as ‘18 USC 793.’
‘The secretary’s superior is the President of the United States,’ the FBI agent noted.
‘So unless he were aware of what she was doing when she was doing it, it seems there could be a legal problem [for her].’
Interesting that on the one hand, in his “60 Minutes” interview, President Obama appeared to be dismissing Clinton’s actions as a non-issue, saying “I don’t think it posed a national security problem.” Yet on the other, he clearly stated “No,” he wasn’t aware Clinton sidestepped security protocols. Was the president aware how potentially damning this statement was to Clinton? Hmmm…
Even if there was cheering in the liberal echo chamber at Tuesday night’s Democrat debate when Bernie Sanders suggested Americans were sick of hearing about Clinton’s emails, I get the feeling somebody forgot to tell the FBI. And the majority of the American people.
The FBI doesn’t show signs of letting up on its investigation. And that’s good news for Americans who believe our leaders should be held accountable when they violate the responsibilities of their office — and, indeed the very security of the nation they’ve sworn to protect.
[Note: This article was written by Michelle Jesse, Associate Editor]