The FBI has released 29 pages of documents that relate to the Bill Clinton-Loretta Lynch meeting on the tarmac of the Phoenix airport last year. The documents were given to the watchdog group Judicial Watch who had sued for them in federal court.
Perhaps it’s more interesting what isn’t in the documents than what is.
Conservative watchdog group Judicial Watch, which on Thursday released 29 pages of FBI emails related to the 2016 meeting, said the messages show officials were more concerned about the leak than the substance of the report.
“These new FBI documents show the FBI was more concerned about a whistleblower who told the truth about the infamous Clinton-Lynch tarmac meeting than the scandalous meeting itself,” Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said in a statement.
The FBI initially claimed it had no documents pertaining to the meeting, until uncovering the files later turned over to Judicial Watch.
The watchdog group, in releasing the files, said FBI officials sent a flurry of emails after the meeting was reported in New York’s Observer.
One email sent from an unidentified FBI account on July 3, 2016 said, “We need to find that guy” and bring him or her before a supervisor. Another said the source should be banned from working security details.
Officials speculated that the source of the leak was a Phoenix police officer. One official said they contacted the Phoenix office and would try to “stem any further damage.”
One official, in a July 2 email, said the article represented a “breach in security protocol” and the Phoenix division would be pressured to “identify the source of the breach.”
Judicial Watch said all names on the emails were redacted and there is no documentation showing concern over the meeting itself.
The tarmac meeting fueled Republican complaints at the time that Lynch had improperly met with the husband of an investigation subject, just before the probe into Hillary Clinton’s personal email use was completed with no charges filed.
Fired FBI Director James Comey, in Senate testimony, described the tarmac meeting as problematic. The tarmac meeting came days before Comey held a news conference informing the media that Hillary Clinton would not be charged.
The documents show an FBI that demonstrated a studied indifference to the potential impropriety of the spouse of the target of an FBI investigation meeting in total secrecy with the top law enforcement officer in the United States.
That meeting was never meant to become public, as evidenced by the scramble by the FBI to find the leaker. So why the secrecy if nothing untoward was discussed between the two?
That the FBI apparently never discussed among themselves the alarming juxtaposition of a powerful former president and their boss, the attorney general meeting to discuss an investigation about his wife is just plain weird. It makes you wonder if this is just another instance of a couple of swamp creatures scratching each other’s back.
If Lynch ends up working in a nice, cushy, well paying job at the Clinton Foundation in a couple of years, we’ll know what the payoff was.