Despite ultimately recommending no charges for former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, FBI Director James Comey sure laid out a helluva case against her. If she won’t be officially labeled a criminal, the only alternative to take from Comey’s evidence is that the presumptive Democrat nominee is entirely incompetent to handle our nation’s classified material.
So, wouldn’t it seem logical then that someone incompetent in handling our nation’s classified material, at the very least, be barred from handling it again?
That’s what GOP Speaker of the House Paul Ryan is calling for in the wake of yesterday’s revelations. As the Washington Times reports, Ryan is calling for Hillary to be stripped of her access to classified information:
House Speaker Paul D. Ryan said Wednesday that Congress could step in and try to deny Hillary Clinton access to classified information during the presidential campaign, if the Obama administration doesn’t take that step itself.
Given that the FBI found Mrs. Clinton “careless” in handling top secret information, Mr. Ryan said Director of National Intelligence James Clapper should deny her the regular intelligence briefings a party’s presidential and vice presidential nominees get.
But he said if Mr. Clapper doesn’t do that, Congress could step in.
“We’re not going to forego any options,” he said — though he insisted the administration should do it “on its own.”
FBI Director James Comey said Tuesday that Mrs. Clinton and her aides were “extremely careless” with classified information, and may well have broken the law, though he doubted, based on precedent, that a prosecutor would try to make a criminal case against her.
Mr. Comey said such behavior is usually punished by administrative action or by having security clearances limited — and Mr. Ryan said that’s a good idea.
A former White House counsel agrees, As the Washington Free Beacon reports:
C. Boyden Gray, who worked in the White House as legal counsel for both President Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, said that Clinton should no longer receive daily intelligence briefings after FBI Director James Comeythe agency’s finding from its investigation that she was “extremely careless” with “very sensitive, highly classified information.”
“I don’t recall ever giving a security clearance to somebody that has been found to have been extremely careless in the handling of sensitive material,” Gray said to the Washington Free Beacon. “It would be impossible to do.”
It just makes perfect sense. So, naturally, the White House is already pooh-poohing the idea, as Josh Earnest cites the “longstanding tradition” for major party presidential nominees to receive such briefings and suggesting the practice will almost certainly continue with Hillary.
Yeah, and we also had a longstanding tradition in this republic of expecting our leaders to hold our nation’s classified information in the highest security and uphold their oath to support and defend against all enemies, foreign and domestic. Not to mention the longstanding tradition of our nation’s rule of law applying equally to all citizens — without special favor to a “ruling class” as President Obama and Hillary Clinton seem to think they are.
Tragically, this administration seems to very clearly pick and choose which of our republic’s “traditions” they want to uphold — use to their political advantage — and which they trash — again for their own political advantage.
Looks like Paul Ryan’s going to have to put his money where his mouth is on this one and get Congress to act.
[Note: This article was written by Michelle Jesse, Associate Editor]