During a line of questioning before the House Oversight Committee, Representative Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) brought up Hillary Clinton’s IT guy Paul Combetta. The FBI Director James Comey had granted Combetta immunity. Combetta’s actions – including going to Reddit and asking people how to delete the emails from a “very VIP” person’s account – didn’t seem to matter to Comey, who mostly played dumb during the questioning. Here’s how the exchange went, as reported by RCP:
Rep. Jim Jordan: Here’s the takeaway in my mind: [Cheryl] Mills gets a heads up in mid-summer of 2014. July 23, the day before Mr. Combetta’s Reddit post, the House Benghazi Committee and the State Dept. reached an agreement on production of documents. Mills has a conversation with Paul Combetta. He goes on Reddit then, and tries to figure out how he can get rid of all this email. Even though he is not successful then, he has to do it later on with BleachBit. And then the clincher: Just last week, he’s going online and trying to delete these Reddit posts. He’s trying to cover up his tracks. He’s trying to cover up the cover-up.
I guess the question is: In light of all this, are you thinking about reopening the investigation?
FBI Director James Comey: I may have misunderstood the question, I don’t understand that to be about deleting the emails, but rather deleting from the ‘from’ line the actual email address. Maybe I misunderstood you.
Jordan: The same guy later took BleachBit and did delete the emails. The guy you gave immunity to, the guy who took the Fifth in front of us, is online trying to figure out how to remove email addresses (change evidence). That guy who later used Bleachbit, who won’t testify in front of Congress, has correspondence with [Hillary Clinton chief of staff] Cheryl Mills, a subject of the investigation. Cheryl Mills, who also got some kind of immunity agreement. Cheryl Mills, who walked out for part of the questions during her interview with the FBI.
Seems to me that is pretty compelling, and the timeline is pretty compelling as well.
Comey: I’m not following. Compelling of what? There is no doubt that Combetta was involved in deleting emails.
Jordan: After conversations with Cheryl Mills?
Comey: He had the ‘Oh S-H-I-T’ moment as he told us. And that is why it was very important for us to interview this guy. To find out who told him to do that, why did you do that. That is why he was given immunity…
Jordan: The guy is trying to cover up the Reddit posts where he is trying to figure out how he can cover up the email addresses. I find that compelling, especially considering the day before he was talking to Cheryl Mills about how the State Dept. is on notice about how the Benghazi Committee wants these very documents. I find that compelling. Obviously the FBI didn’t.
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