The Obama administration’s White House counsel was directly involved in deliberations over the release of Hillary Clinton emails as early as spring 2015, according to handwritten FBI agent notes released by the bureau late Friday.
The notes read: “Pat Kennedy (early May ’15) calls interagency MTG (meeting) re: scheduled release by JAN ’16, asking quick turnarounds – WH Counsel, CIA, etc…OSD, DNI, NSC and (redacted)”
The notes offer a raw account of the case from the perspective of FBI agents. Much of the content already had been documented in previously released FBI interview summaries, called 302s. The reference to “Counsel,” however, appears to be the earliest confirmation of White House involvement.
From the outset, the White House tried to put distance between itself and the former secretary of state’s personal email controversy. The records were also released to Judicial Watch which sued in federal court.
On March 7, 2015, then-President Barack Obama told CBS News that he learned about Clinton’s private server for government business from the media. “The same time everybody else learned it, through news reports,” he said. But an email sent from Clinton aide Cheryl Mills later that day, and published by WikiLeaks, shows she told Clinton Campaign Chairman John Podesta otherwise: “We need to clean this up. He has emails from her — they do not say state.gov.”
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