NEW YORK – The Clinton “spin machine” appears to be behind a report claiming Director of National Intelligence James Clapper has overruled the finding of Intelligence Community Inspector General Charles McCullough that two Hillary Clinton emails sent on her private server contained highly classified information, investigative author Ed Klein told WND.
“It’s not true that Director of National Intelligence Clapper has overruled Inspector General Charles McCullough,” Klein said after a careful reading of news articles regarding the FBI’s probe of Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server while secretary of state.
The FBI is investigating whether she violated the Espionage Act’s subsection pertaining to “gross negligence” in the safekeeping of national defense information, a source familiar with the investigation told Fox News in October.
“I’m assuming the Obama response team has gone to work, as they always do, and made the phone calls needed to make, including, I’m sure, to the office of the director of national intelligence, James Clapper,” said Klein, known for his exposes of the Kennedys, Clintons and Obamas.
“This would be in keeping with the Clinton response-team method of operation,” said Klein, whose latest book is “Unlikeable: The Problem with Hillary.”
The controversy traces back to a Sept. 7 New York Times story reporting a special intelligence review endorsed a finding by Inspector General McCullough that two emails Clinton received as secretary of state on her personal email server emails contained highly classified information when Clinton received them. One of the emails was about North Korea’s nuclear weapons program.
Last Friday, however, Politico’s Josh Gerstein reported the U.S. intelligence community “has retreated from claims that two emails in Hillary Clinton’s private account contained top-secret information.”
Gerstein cited an unnamed source “familiar with the situation” who said Clapper had resolved a dispute between McCullough’s finding and the State Department in favor of the State Department.
But Gerstein reported a spokesman for Clapper said the review of the emails has not been completed.
The Office of the Director of National Intelligence “has made no such determination and the review is ongoing,’ Clapper spokesman Brian Hale said.”
On Sunday, the New York Post editorial board, in an opinion piece titled “Whitewashing Hillary – step one in shutting down the FBI’s probe,” wrote that Clapper’s office had ”reportedly drawn” the conclusion that the two Clinton emails in dispute contained no classified information, apparently overruling McCullough’s determination to the contrary.
Klein said, however, that if Clapper’s office “had indeed done an official review of McCullough’s conclusions, and come to a different conclusion, that would be made public.”
Klein noted that the Politico story was based on an unnamed source and that the New York Post editorial board qualified its analysis by inserting “reportedly drawn” to indicate the information was not coming from Clapper himself or from any official statement from Clapper’s office.
“Had Clapper overruled McCullough, this would be so important that we would have an official statement form Clapper or from his office,” Klein said. But I don’t believe that all we would have is a leak.
“So, I really believe that Clapper’s office has not yet really resolved the issue, but that what we have from the Politico article and the New York Post editorial is Clinton spin at this point.”
To indict or not to indict
Klein told WND he now has two sources who are presenting him with conflicting views of the current thinking of President Obama regarding whether or not the FBI investigation should be allowed to proceed to its conclusion without political interference from the White House.
“On the one hand, several of my sources tell me that President Obama has, in fact, instructed Valerie Jarrett to make sure that investigation by the FBI and by whatever other parts of the government go on unimpeded and find whatever is legitimate,” he said. “In other words, several of my sources say President Obama is encouraging a thorough and complete investigation.
“On the other hand, I have sources who tell me that President Obama and his advisers, especially Valerie Jarrett, are very concerned that if Hillary were to be indicted in the next few months, it would convulse the American political system to such a degree that it would overwhelm the remainder of Barack Obama’s presidency,” Klein said.
In that case, he said, “virtually every front page story for weeks and weeks would be about this indictment and what it means for Hillary, for the political system, for the Democratic Party, for the next president, that President Obama would become virtually an after-thought.”
“President Obama does not want that to happen,” Klein stressed.
He said Obama “wants to go out of office with a bang, and of course, to continue to have influence over the direction of the Democratic Party after he leaves the White House.”
Klein said that in the simplest terms, Obama, “since he dislikes Hillary and the Clintons so much, probably would like to see Hillary pay the price for ignoring his orders about not using a private email server.”
However, according to those sources, he said, Obama “thinks it would be better for him if all this investigation of Hillary’s emails just passed away without an indictment, so he could end his presidency on an up note.”
“My sources very close to the White House say the president and Valerie Jarrett have actually talked about whether President Obama would give Hillary Clinton a presidential pardon, if she were indicted,” Klein said. “I’m not saying they are planning to do that; I’m just saying the subject has come up in their conversations.
“I’m sure many things come up in their conversations,” Klein said. “So, I don’t want to overemphasize the importance of this. It might just be a passing thought that would never happen. But President Obama and Valerie Jarrett have actually discussed the possibility of giving Hillary a presidential pardon, should she be indicted.”