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FBI chief rebuts GOP: Petraeus case was worse that Clinton

The Hill

By Julian Hattem – 07/07/16 10:58 AM EDT
FBI Director James Comey on Thursday rejected the argument from Republicans that the mishandling of classified information by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was worse than the abuses committed by former CIA Director David Petraeus.

Despite “great carelessness,” Clinton never gave off signs that she intentionally violated the law through the use of a series of email servers housed in the basement of her New York home, Comey testified before the House Oversight Committee.

But Petraeus clearly did show evidence of intentionally violating the law, Comey said.
Not only was Petraeus caught on tape telling his mistress and biographer that there was “code word stuff” in the “highly classified” material he slipped to her. The retired general also lied about a cache of classified material he had hidden in his attic, Comey said, comprising obstruction of justice and further evidence that he “knew what he was doing was a violation of the law.”

“We found [the classified materials] in a search warrant hidden under the insulation in his attic, and then he lied to us about it during the investigation.”

“That is the perfect illustration of the kind of cases that get prosecuted,” Comey said. “In my mind, it illustrates perfectly the distinction between this case.”

Petraeus was charged with misdemeanor crimes not including obstruction of justice, in what has been described as Justice Department prosecutors’ overruling of FBI officials’ push for felony charges. Legal experts have pointed to the former CIA director’s example as a lowering of the bar for criminal charges for mishandling classified information.

Comey’s claims were a rebuttal to allegations from presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump and other Republicans that Clinton got off scot-free, while Petraeus suffered the heavy hand of justice.

“General Petraeus got in trouble for far less,” Trump said on Twitter this week, after Comey announced that he would not recommend charges against Clinton. “Very very unfair! As usual, bad judgment.”

Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.) suggested that “Gen. David Petraeus is due an apology.”

Source: The Hill

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