Posted: 10:48 pm Sunday, October 30th, 2016
By Jamie Dupree
A short letter delivered to Congress on Friday by the FBI Director about a possible new angle in the probe of Hillary Clinton’s email server swiftly escalated into a full-blown partisan brawl over the weekend, with Republicans cheering on a further FBI review of Clinton, while a top Democrat in Congress accused the FBI chief of “partisan actions” that might violate federal law.
In a letter sent Sunday, Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) said FBI Director James Comey was guilty of a “disturbing double standard,” as Reid charged the FBI chief was “tarring Secretary Clinton with thin innuendo.”
Reid also used that letter to demand an update from the FBI on any links between Donald Trump and the Russian government.
One Republican Senator swung right back at Reid, as Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) called Reid a disgrace.
Harry Reid is a disgrace to American politics, among worst men ever in Senate. He can't go soon enough, & many Democrats privately agree. https://t.co/4lCKx5pKi4
— Tom Cotton (@TomCottonAR) October 30, 2016
That was just the tip of the iceberg, as Republicans and Democrats in Congress quickly stepped up their own verbal broadsides at the other party.
“If you don’t want the FBI involved in elections, don’t nominate someone who’s being investigated by the FBI!” said Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-SC) on Twitter.
— Mark Meadows (@RepMarkMeadows) October 30, 2016
“As the FBI reopens its investigation, Hillary Clinton has no one but herself to blame,” Speaker Paul Ryan chimed in.
But Democratic lawmakers were having none of that.
“FBI Director James Comey’s letter to Congress doesn’t give us any useful information — it just serves Republican attacks against Hillary,” said Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) – Clinton’s running mate.
“Just ten days before a Presidential election, the American people deserve more disclosure without delay,” a group of Democratic Senators wrote in a letter to the FBI chief.
Comey FBI letter is shocking interference with US democracy. GOP over exaggerating its meaning. Comey should release all info immediately.
— Lois Frankel (@LoisFrankel) October 29, 2016
In Florida, Hillary Clinton told voters that she was not going to be “knocked off course” by the renewed focus on her emails.
“You know, there’s a lot of noise and distractions,” Clinton said on Sunday, as she vowed to stay focused on the concerns of voters.
But the email story was eating up most of the political oxygen over the weekend, and Trump was more than happy to pile on, calling the emails on a laptop held by ex-Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY), the “mother lode.”
“We only have Crooked Hillary to beat,” Trump said to cheers at a stop in New Mexico on Sunday night.
“I think the least of her problems right now is this race,” as the crowd chanted, “Lock her up!”
About the Author
Jamie Dupree is the Radio News Director of the Washington Bureau of the Cox Media Group and writes the Washington Insider blog. A native of Washington, D.C., Jamie has covered Congress and politics in the nation’s capital since the Reagan Administration, and has been reporting for Cox since 1989.