The Corner

Politics & Policy

The Clintons, Forever Demanding Their Party Defend the Indefensible

From the first Morning Jolt of the week…

The Clintons, Forever Demanding Their Party Defend the Indefensible

Ah, now I remember that feeling – the combination of incredulity, disgust and embarrassment for another person that comes watching seemingly bright people tie themselves into knots in order to defend the indefensible and justify the unjustifiable in order to defend the Clintons.

This was a fine vintage of that feeling, from 1998:

Some Clinton defenders have stopped pretending he was truthful in favor of portraying dishonesty as not just a forgivable flaw but a positive virtue: a mark, in fact, of his noble character. Historian Arthur Schlesinger Jr., who knows something about presidential sex from working in the Kennedy White House, wrote in The New York Times this week, “Gentlemen always lie about their sex lives. Only a cad will tell the truth about his sexual affairs.”

Oh, really? I didn’t remember that part in the federal perjury statute. Wait, let me double check…. “any written testimony, declaration, deposition, or certificate by him subscribed, is true, willfully and contrary to such oath states or subscribes any material matter which he does not believe to be true…” Yeah, I don’t see any footnotes declaring that lying under oath is okay as long as it’s a “gentleman” discussing sex. The oath is traditionally, “Do you solemnly (swear/affirm) that you will tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, (so help you God/under pains and penalties of perjury)?” Have you ever heard any “as long as the topic isn’t sex”? I must have missed that episode of Law & Order.

Perjury, as in the sort of charge a person faces usually faces when she signs an official U.S. State Department document saying she has been briefed on the rules and laws for classified material and then tells the FBI that she cannot recall “any briefing or training by State related to the retention of federal records of handling of classified information.” Either she lied on the form or lied to the FBI, pick one.

We don’t know what’s in the 650,000 emails on a laptop used by former Rep. Anthony Weiner and his estranged wife Huma Abedin, It could be not much beyond the standard e-mails one would expect to find. Or one or some of the messages could contain classified information. The Wall Street Journal reports “underlying metadata suggests thousands of those messages could have been sent to or from the private server that Mrs. Clinton used while she was secretary of state, according to people familiar with the matter.”

As usual, almost every Democrat who hailed FBI Director James Comey as fair-minded paragon of integrity back in the summer now insists he’s a crazed partisan trying to throw the election to Trump. (If he really wanted to do that, wouldn’t it have been easier to recommend charges to the Department of Justice? Even if Attorney General Loretta Lynch refused to press the charges, the political damage would be done.) The New York Daily News is literally calling him a mad bomber.

What, exactly, did these furious critics want Comey to do? He finds out that there’s a new avenue of investigation, a giant trove of e-mails that were not turned over as required, and he’s supposed to just… avert his eyes and pretend his agents didn’t find it? He’s supposed to just not tell Congress, even though he pledged to them, under oath, he would keep them updated? Right now, the vast majority of Democrats are furiously angry that Comey did not withhold information from Congress, because it would be politically embarrassing to Hillary Clinton. That’s not supposed to be a priority of the FBI Director.

When Comey does what Democrats want him to do, they praise him as Eliot Ness, King Solomon, Frank Serpico, and Jesus all rolled into one. But the moment he follows procedure and brings up topics the Clinton campaign doesn’t want in the news, he’s Torquemada, Captain Queeg, Javert and Ahab rolled into one. Look, we get it, Democrats, you have absolute faith in Comey’s judgment as long as he’s ruling in your favor. If you guys were less invested in a emotionally-convenient narrative where all wisdom and virtue aligns with your political interests of the moment, you would have praised Comey’s summer decision but not put him up on a pedestal.

Instead, they had to insist that no reasonable person could question his summer decision.  I mean, it was just July that Hillary Clinton’s campaign was telling us how independent, thorough, respected and honest Comey was.

Throughout his long career in law enforcement, the independence of FBI chief James Comey has rarely been questioned. Comey is a well-respected Republican who served as George W. Bush’s Deputy Attorney General. And when President Obama tapped him to serve as Director of the FBI, he was confirmed by a 93-1 vote.

Donna Brazile – now the Democratic National Committee chair — said that attacking James Comey’s decision was attacking the rule of law itself.

Since Donna Brazile blocked me last night when I pointed out her former words, here’s a screenshot of her Tweet:

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