Republicans signaled they're not done with election-year investigations of Hillary Clinton and whether she lied to Congress, even after a House committee signed off Friday on its report into the deadly 2012 attacks in Benghazi, Libya.
"Let me repeat what I have repeated for many months now", Clinton said.
"I am appalled that there are high-level policymakers in this country who still fail to recognize the serious national security implications of the use of a personal email server by Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonTrump: Clinton answering "softball questions" on "day of national tragedy" Clinton: Dallas shootings "deeply troubling" Clinton rebuts Federal Bureau of Investigation charge of recklessness MORE when she was Secretary of State".
For most of the hearing, Comey kept his cool. "I say that under oath; I stand by that".
"Before this investigation, I'd have probably said yes", Comey said. Conversely, many were saying before Comey even announced his decision that the investigation was rigged to exonerate Clinton. They will at least understand how the decision was made. "I have said many times, and I repeat clearly today, it was a mistake for me to use personal e-mail and I regret that".
One telling exchange in that regard happened when Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC), a former prosecutor and the leader of the Select Committee on Benghazi, confronted Comey with numerous false statements made by Clinton before Congress. Gowdy then asked Comey, "In interest of time ..." We call bovine excrement on that: After all, why would Barack Obama be campaigning with Hillary on the very day she was cleared if he didn't know the fix was in? I think she was negligent.
Comey, a registered Republican for years though he said he now is not registered in a political party, served as deputy attorney general in the George W. Bush administration. Chairman Trey Gowdy of SC says lawmakers may seek a federal investigation into whether Clinton lied to the committee in testimony past year. She's not going to go to jail or suffer a penalty for anything she does.
We've chosen to look at Clinton's claim again with the information that was available to her when she spoke but only became available publicly Tuesday.
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We previously found that Clinton was spinning what was publicly known about the FBI investigation and Clinton's emails. He suggested that Comey had contributed to that by leaving "a perceived gap" between his public criticism of Clinton and his conclusion not to prosecute.
"I certainly did not believe that I received or sent any material that was classified", she said, adding that emails containing classified information were "not marked or were marked inaccurately".
"He admitted he knew that was the wrong thing to do", Comey said.
"In their eyes, you had one job - and one job only - to prosecute Hillary Clinton", the Committee's ranking Democrat, Rep. Elijah Cummings, told Comey. That is a flawless illustration of the kind of cases that get prosecuted.
In almost five hours of testimony, Comey sought to explain the Justice Department's decision ending an investigation that has dogged Clinton's presidential campaign and raised fresh questions among voters about her trustworthiness. Lynch is likely to face questions of her own next week at a separate oversight hearing of the House Judiciary Committee.
Given these concerns, it's reasonable to give Clinton a little benefit of the doubt regarding how she treated classified information that landed in her inbox unlabeled, said Steven Aftergood, director of the Project on Government Secrecy at the Federation of American Scientists.
And in what has been a week of defense for Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee has reacted to his use of an image in a tweet that has been criticized as anti-Semitic, telling supporters it should not have been taken off his feed.
While Comey has let Hillary off the hook, his decision can not wash her clean of the indelible impression among a majority of voters that she is untrustworthy.