The race for the White House was jolted on Friday when FBI Director James Comey notified congressional leaders that the agency was investigating more emails as part of its probe into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email system. The emails were discovered as part of a probe into former Congressmember Anthony Weiner, the estranged husband of top Clinton aide Huma Abedin. Abedin reportedly stored hundreds of thousands of emails on Weiner’s computer, which was seized by the FBI after Weiner allegedly sent illicit text messages to a 15-year-old girl. Comey notified Congress before the FBI even obtained a warrant to look at Abedin’s email. A warrant was reportedly issued over the weekend. On the campaign trail, Donald Trump welcomed Comey’s announcement.
Donald Trump: “I have great respect for the fact that the FBI and the Department of Justice are now willing to have the courage to right the horrible mistake that they made. This was a grave miscarriage of justice that the American people fully understood, and it is everybody’s hope that it is about to be corrected. … The news this morning is—this is bigger than Watergate.”
Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton addressed the FBI’s actions during a campaign rally in Daytona Beach.
Hillary Clinton: “It’s pretty strange to put something like that out with such little information right before an election. In fact—in fact, it’s not just strange, it’s unprecedented. And it is deeply troubling, because voters deserve to get full and complete facts. And so, we’ve called on Director Comey to explain everything right away, put it all out on the table, right?”
The criticism of Comey has come from both Democrats and Republicans, who charge Comey may have violated the Hatch Act, which prohibits employees of the executive branch from engaging in political activity. We’ll have more on the FBI’s “October surprise” after headlines, when we’ll be joined by Michael Isikoff, chief investigative correspondent for Yahoo News.