Economy

Sessions on IG report: 'We're not going to be defensive'

Sessions on IG report: 'We're not going to be defensive'

President Donald Trump said the inspector general's report on the Hillary Clinton email investigation proves that the FBI and the Justice Department acted out of bias against him, but the report itself does not back up his claims.

John Podesta, who ran the Clinton campaign, said "the (Horowitz) report demonstrates beyond doubt" that Comey was unfair to Clinton by announcing developments in the e-mail investigation during the campaign while not revealing the separate probe, beginning in July 2016, into the Trump campaign and Russian Federation. "We're going to confront any problems and we're going to deal with them one by one in a proper, fair and appropriate way", Sessions said Friday during an address to law enforcement at Lackawanna College in Scranton, Pennsylvania.

TRUMP: "I mean there was total bias".

It also disputed the Trump talking point that the Federal Bureau of Investigation favored Clinton over him, saying, "We found no evidence that the conclusions by the prosecutors were affected by bias or other improper considerations; rather, we determined that they were based on the prosecutors' assessment of the facts, the law and past department practice".

Strzok was removed from that investigative team in the summer of 2017 once the text messages came to the attention of the special counsel's office, according to media reports. "The FBI handled the investigation in a way that was very problematic for Clinton and complicated her life immensely". In one case, a male agent and a female agent who are now married exchanged messages in which the female agent called Trump's OH supporters "retarded" and later messaged, "f-- Trump".

It also criticized him for violating Justice Department policies and accused him of usurping the authority of Attorney General Loretta Lynch when in July 2016 he announced there would be no charges against Clinton for her email use as secretary of state.

"There was no collusion, no obstruction", Trump told reporters in a wild press scrum Friday.

Comey, days before the election, announced he would revisit the probe after the discovery of new emails, a move that the Clinton camp has blamed for her loss.

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FBI Director Christopher Wray said that "conduct in the report" had already been referred to the department's disciplinary arm, but he would not say which employees had been referred or for what conduct. Strzok then prioritized the investigation into Russian election meddling, putting off Clinton-related emails found on the computer of disgraced former congressman Anthony Weiner, who was married at the time to top Clinton aide Huma Abedin.

The inspector general's report did note that the texts display "a willingness to take official action to impact a presidential candidate's electoral prospects". It represents the culmination of an 18-month review into one of the most consequential FBI investigations in recent history.

"If you look at the fruit of the poisoned tree, you can't have that kind of bias in somebody wanting to make sure the president gets defeated leading an investigation", Meadows said.

These and other missteps by Comey and other FBI and Justice Department officials damaged the FBI's credibility, Horowitz concluded in his 500-page review of the investigation, which took 18 months to complete.

Trump himself said he had "reservations" about a sit-down with the investigators. He'd tell Trump what he wanted to hear in private, while misleading him - failing, for example, to tell him that impetus for the collusion investigation was a document paid for by Democratic operatives.

It also accuses Comey of getting ahead of the DOJ on the final decision on whether to prosecute Clinton. And its existence was a dominate thread of the 2016 presidential campaign.

The revelation was made public last week in the Department of Justice's much-anticipated inspector general's report.

Mueller is looking into the alleged Russian interference in the 2016 USA presidential election and any potential collusion between the Trump campaign and Moscow, among other matters that may arise from the investigation.