This week Donald Trump has indicated that he has no wish to pursue criminal charges against Hillary Clinton stating something to the effect that “she needs to heal.” Understandably, many of his supporters are disappointed. After the apparent “fix” under President Obama’s Justice Department, many were hoping that a Trump administration and a new attorney general (Jeff Sessions) would unleash the FBI and DOJ to bring forth the evidence of criminal wrongdoing over the email scandal as well as the financial irregularities of the Clinton Foundation. I too share those feelings.
But will it happen?
Notwithstanding the rhetoric of candidate Trump about “crooked Hillary,” President Trump will be faced with some political realities. Any effort to prosecute Mrs. Clinton will be labeled as a political witch hunt by a Republican president, Congress and Justice Department. Ultimately, he will be faced with a choice of pushing through his agenda vs. expending political capital in pursuing charges against Mrs. Clinton. The easy choice is to drop it all and let the Clintons fade into the sunset.
But what about the principle that everybody is subject to the law?
It is my belief that Mrs Clinton is guilty of the following:
- Violating security laws with her use of a private email server. Based on the information that has become public, I think a prima facia case is there.
- That leads to possible perjury violations against Mrs. Clinton based on her testimony to Congress. After FBI Director James Comey made his public declaration that no charges would be presented to DOJ, he testified before Congress. Answering specific questions from Trey Gowdy (R-SC), he refuted specific statements made by Mrs. Clinton under oath about her use of a private server during her tenure as Secretary of State. Congress has already referred the issue of Mrs. Clinton’s possible false testimony to the FBI for investigation.
- The Clinton Foundation – It is reported that the FBI is still investigating the Clinton Foundation and the charges of “pay for play.”
As president, Trump’s official position should be that the FBI and DOJ should follow the leads wherever they take them. It would not be proper for the president – any president – to push for someone to be charged or not charged. In the case of high-ranking government officials, past or present, a special prosecutor should be appointed. (This should have happened long ago in the investigations of Mrs. Clinton.)
On the email issue, it could be argued that the federal justice system had their bite at the apple – and failed. While it would be within the letter of the law to re-open the email case, it might not be within the spirit of the law.
However, if Mrs. Clinton committed perjury before Congress, that is fair game. In addition, if the FBI comes up with criminal wrongdoing within the Clinton Foundation, that should also be fair game. The FBI will be charged with following the leads and providing the information to the independent counsel. I am sure they will happily comply.
That is why Trump should have Jeff Sessions appoint a special prosecutor. Remove the White House and the new DOJ from the case. Let an independent counsel settle the issue of Clinton wrongdoing once and for all.
The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com