Yesterday morning, in the the House Oversight Committee, Congressman Ken Buck had the opportunity to question FBI Director James Comey on his organization’s weak handling of the Hillary Clinton email scandal. We later learned that the FBI didn’t put Hillary under oath and didn’t record the interview
Putting his prosecutor hat back on, Buck walked through the statute – almost word for word – that Clinton violated with her personal server that contained classified information. Buck pressed Comey on two critical elements of the law: whether he agreed that Clinton “knowingly removed classified material without authority,” and “with the intent to retain such material in an unauthorized place.”
Buck does an outstanding job flushing out three critical elements proving Clinton’s intent to break the law. That:
- Clinton knew that she was not authorized to have that server in her basement
- Clinton knew that she was receiving information in connection with her employment on that server
- Clinton knew that as the Secretary of State, some of that information would be classified
Buck also was sharp to point out that the statute did not contain the word “willfully” anywhere in the law, suggesting that there is a lower standard of intent to be present. In other words, according to the law, there does not have to be intent to violate this statute to be in violation of the law. In many environmental crimes, for example, no intent to break the law is necessary to obtain a conviction. Amazingly, Comey disagreed with Buck, and asserted that his organization imputes that the element of intent needed to be there to break the law, even though Congress specifically omitted that from the statute.
Check out Buck’s YouTube channel for his five minute exchange with Comey.