Comey: Loretta Lynch Requested Clinton E-mail Investigation Be Called a 'Matter'

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Former FBI director James Comey said Thursday he took the controversial decision to speak out publicly on the probe into Hillary Clinton's email a year ago because he thought his boss, the attorney general, had become politically compromised. "Maybe going forward I shouldn't stay up late watching the Diamondbacks night games", he said in a statement Thursday.

"In the case of Hillary Clinton, you made the statement that there wasn't sufficient evidence to bring a suit against her, although it had been very careless in their behavior, but you did reach a conclusion in that case that it was not necessary to further pursue her", McCain's line of questioning began.

McCain said he wants Comey to answer whether or not Trump's interactions with Comey constitute obstruction of justice.

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Comey's comments on the Clinton email investigation in July 2016, as the presidential election campaign was well underway, drew criticism from Republicans at the time. Comey said the alleged collusion led him "in an ultimately conclusive way" to hold a press conference to "separate" the investigation from A.G. Lynch's pressure. The President has said he fired Comey because the public had lost confidence in his leadership.

Comey said he made a decision to share his memo through another party after Trump wrote on Twitter days after Comey's abrupt dismissal that "James Comey better hope that there are no "tapes" of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press". McCain asked Comey why the FBI had concluded the investigation into former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's private email server, and yet was still investigating the Trump administration in regard to Russian Federation.

Mr Comey said he was concerned Ms Lynch was seeking to align the Justice Department with wording that Mrs Clinton's camp was using. "I think that's a double standard there, to tell you the truth". After Clinton and Lynch met as their planes were on the same tarmac, Comey said he decided he had to "protect the credibility of the investigation".

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He told lawmakers that Lynch had directed him to refer to the Clinton email probe as a "matter", which tracked the language used by her campaign, instead of an investigation.

"I think the American people have a whole lot of questions", McCain followed up. It appeared that McCain could not appreciate nor understand Comey's reply and kept repeating himself. But what came out was a confusing mess about Clinton and Russian Federation, with McCain even accidentally saying "President Comey" at one point. Didn't do it myself for a variety of reasons, but I asked him to because I thought that might prompt the appointment of a special counsel.

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