Before entering into the New Year, the House Republicans decided to end their investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email scandal, during the 2016 presidential elections. The unceremonious announcement came just days before January 1, when the Democrats are poised to take over the House.
On Friday, Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) released a set of major findings and observations from the investigation, and notified the top leaders of the FBI and Department of Justice (DOJ) — FBI Director Christopher Wray and acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker — that the probe has concluded.
The investigation was initiated last Fall, by the House Oversight and Government Reform and Judiciary committees to look into the allegations that FBI and DOJ favored Clinton’s candidacy, and were biased against President Donald Trump during the last presidential elections.
In a letter to Whitaker and Wray, Bob Goodlatte wrote, “With the 115th Congress coming to a close, the investigation into decisions made by DOJ and FBI and related interviews conducted by the House Committee on the Judiciary and Committee on Oversight and Government Reform have, at least for the time being, been concluded.”
The major conclusion of the probe matched the accusations Republicans have targeted through the investigation: FBI and DOJ treated Donald Trump unjustly.
“Our 2016 presidential candidates were not treated equally,” Bob Goodlatte wrote, claiming the “DOJ and FBI’s investigation of Secretary Clinton was over before it began.”
In a press release, the Chairman also praised the committees’ accomplishments with the probe, including the firings of “multiple high-ranking Justice Department employees”.
He particularly focused on the firing of former FBI counterintelligence agent Peter Strzok — who came under the intense probe for sending scornful text messages about Trump during the election period — along with the March firing of FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe.
“Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok, and others were fired or resigned during the Committees’ investigation, after the investigation and the [inspector general] Report exposed their bias during their investigations,” Bob Goodlatte wrote.
The letter also compared the two simultaneous probing against both the candidates of 2016 presidential elections. It stated that the former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton received a far more warm treatment during the probe into her email use, as compared to Trump during the beginning of the counterintelligence investigation into Russian meddling.
While the House Republicans have taken a smart move by concluding the investigation abruptly before the Democrats come into power, the investigations by Special Counsel Robert Mueller against the Russian interference in the 2016 elections is still in progress, where the outcome is still uncertain.