President Obama took to national airwaves on Sunday to assure the American people the investigation into Hillary Clinton and her private email server would continue without any politicking on his part – despite the fact that just moments earlier he stated his unequivocal belief the former secretary of state was not guilty of actions that put the American people at national security risk.
“Here’s what I know,” Obama said to Fox News host Chris Wallace. “Hillary Clinton was an oustanding secretary of state. She would never intentionally put America in any kind of jeopardy.”
He then added: “I continue to believe she has not jeopardized America’s national security. Now what I also said is that, and she’s acknowledged, that there’s a carelessness in terms of managing emails that she has owned. And she recognizes that. But I also think it is important to keep this in perspective. This is somebody who served her country for four years as secretary of state and did an outstanding job and no one has suggested that in some ways as a consequence of how she’s handled emails that that detracted from her excellent ability to carry out her duties.”
Wallace then raised the issue of politics and the investigation into Clinton, and whether the former would influence the latter.
He asked: “Can you guarantee to the American people [it won’t]? Can you direct the Justice Department to say, Hillary Clinton will be treated as the evidence goes, she’ll not be in any way protected?”
And Obama’s response?
“I can guarantee,” he said. “I can guarantee that not because I give Attorney General [Loretta] Lynch a directive, that is institutionally how we have always operated. I do not talk to the attorney general about pending investigations. I do not talk to FBI directors about pending investigations. We have a strict line and always have maintained it. I guarantee it. I guarantee that there is no political influence in any investigation conducted by the Justice Department or the FBI, not just in this case but in any case. Period.”
Obama also added this, the news outlet reported: “Nobody gets treated differently when it comes to the Justice Deparmtnet because nobody is above the law.”
Wallace then asked if Clinton “ends up as the Democratic nominee,” if that would water down that vow.
“How many times do I have to say it, Chris? Guaranteed,” Obama said.