DOJ Says Clinton Had Authority to Delete Emails, Cornyn Calls for a Special Prosecutor Anyway

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

The Department of Justice told a federal court last week that Hillary Clinton had the authority as Secretary of State to decide which of her emails were personal and delete them from her system.

Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX) apparently didn't get the memo, however, because he's now calling on the Department of Justice to appoint a special prosecutor to the case because Clinton's staff "made their own determinations as to which of the emails on her server were government records and deleted the remainder."

Cornyn pointed to Justice Department regulations that allow for use of special prosecutors in “extraordinary circumstances.”

“The Attorney General has a special duty to pursue justice even when political considerations run counter to doing so. At critical times in our nation’s history, your predecessors have exercised that duty by appointing politically-independent individuals to investigate potential wrongdoing involving senior administration officials,” Cornyn wrote.

If the Department of Justice declines to appoint a special prosecutor, the fact that no crimes have been committed seems more influential to me than "political considerations."

"Political considerations" are the only reason why anyone is even talking about this. "Political considerations" are why the Select Solyndra IRS Committee to Investigate the Benghazi ACORN Birth Certificate Email Account was created; the reason why the Republican party has spent several years and millions of dollars investigating the same thing over and over.

Several Republican-controlled committees already issued conclusive reports on Benghazi as far back as the previous session of Congress, but we're still talking about it because politics. Because somewhere buried deep in Clinton's trove of personal emails is the smoking gun that proves she covered up... something. Who knows what? This entire charade is based on a series of conspiracy theories.

Republicans calling for a special prosecutor to investigate a Clinton over personal issues is very familiar in all the worst ways.

  • Phrenzi

    Another shining example of conservative spending on wasteful b.s. conspiracy theories…..Just like Planned Parenthood.

  • KABoink_after_wingnut_hacker

    I’m not too good at math, but I think I’ve stumbled onto and equation:
    (political theater + fear – facts = republican America divided by religious superstition)

  • muselet

    Oh. Good. Lord.

    “Secretary Clinton denied publicly that she transmitted classified information and violated government policy, both of which proved untrue. Secretary Clinton’s lawyers made their own determinations as to which of the emails on her server were government records and deleted the remainder — tens of thousands of documents,” Cornyn wrote Tuesday. “And the former campaign staffer who set up the server, who would subsequently be employed both by the State Department and Secretary Clinton privately, has invoked the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution to avoid providing information to government investigators.”

    There’s no evidence of any transmission of materials which were classified at the time, just as there’s no evidence of violation of law, or departmental rules or regulations. Hillary Clinton and her staff did what every previous Secretary of State did by clearing out personal messages from the email server. And given the desperation of the Rs to find someone, anyone to pressure into implicating Clinton, invoking the Fifth seems to this non-lawyer a sensible tactic (his lawyers seem to think so, too).

    I’d be surprised if John Cornyn doesn’t have Ken Starr’s phone number on speed dial.


    • Victor the Crab

      Hillary Clinton’s emails. The Planned Parenthood video. It doesn’t matter if any of this is a big, stinkin’ pile of bullshit, the right firmly believes that they must be up to SOMETHING!!! Therefore, they must be charged and prosecuted with the full extent of the law!

      Sentence first, verdict afterwards.

      • muselet

        The Queen of Hearts would be so proud of the modern Republican Party.


  • Nefercat

    This is a stupid and willfully wasteful witchhunt.

    That said, it would be interesting if it turned out to be one of those situations in which all sorts of other governmental record keeping activities no different than Clinton’s were brought into the investigation.

    Maybe it is not legally possible (I am certainly not a lawyer) but I do wish that it would turn out to be a case of the republicans not being careful about what they wished for.

    • Christopher Foxx

      … in which all sorts of other governmental record keeping activities no different than Clinton’s were brought into the investigation.

      Not going to happen. Because all those very similar record keeping activities are, according to the Republicans, actually very different. Because Clinton wasn’t involved in those, and it’s only a problem when she does it.

    • Scopedog

      This is a stupid and willfully wasteful witchhunt.

      Yep. But on the other hand, the GOP’s constant harping on the e-mails has contributed to the meme that Hillary is not “trustworthy” and that she must be up to something sneaky. That’s spreading across the MSM and even some supporters of Bernie Sanders are using it to justify why their candidate is awesome and isn’t a compromised, lying politician like Hillary (and Obama).