October 18, 2016

Fox News is desperate for anything, anything at all, to blow out as a story in order to do some damage to Hillary Clinton since their preferred candidate has nothing to offer.

As usual, when in doubt, let Jason Chaffetz leak something from the FBI reports so they can talk emails. No one cares, but emails are the knee-jerk go-to these days for right wing sites. House Republicans even leaked the report to Fox News with a note that it is "a flashing red light of potential criminality." Just in case they didn't get the memo, I'm sure. He also said he hadn't read the documents himself, but he was sure there was evidence of a quid pro quo in them somewhere, by someone, just because.

Rachel Maddow's report above thoroughly debunks the claim that there was some quid pro quo offered and taken on classifications of her email, after the fact. That is the REAL story here -- that some emails were classified long after she had left the State Department. More importantly, there was no quid pro quo from State to the FBI.

Maddow explained how Fox spun it. "[The story is] basically this. As the State Department was releasing Hillary Clinton's e-mails from her private server, a senior State Department official went to the FBI and asked the FBI to not mark one of those e-mails classified. In exchange, the State Department would do the FBI a favor and secure additional space for FBI agents posted overseas," she explained.

" Quid pro quo, you do this for us, we'll do this for you. At least that is what Jason Chaffetz had heard."

Oh, I'm pretty sure that's what he heard. It's a shame that the chairman of the House Oversight Committee hadn't taken the time to actually read the documents, though. But hearings! Because that's what he does! He holds hearings!

Maddow observed, "I wonder if the hearings would be before or after he had time to read the documents."

Here's the problem. The offer for a quid pro quo went in the opposite direction than what Chaffetz claimed.

"And if the scandal was the State Department offering something to the FBI, well, it turns out the State Department never offered anything to the FBI. The FBI says it was actually one of their agents who brought up this issue of the space for FBI agents overseas and then that FBI agent suggested to a colleague that a quid pro quo might be possible," Rachel continued.

She concluded, "So it's not the state department asking the FBI for favors and offering actions in response, it's that backwards. An FBI official tells NBC news today the FBI has launched a serious internal investigation into its own agent who is now retired."

And with some emphasis on the point.

"To be clear, that e-mail in question, it stayed classified just as the FBI wanted and the State Department never gave the FBI anyvmore space for agents overseas. If any quid pro quo was ever offered, it certainly never took place and didn't come from Hillary Clinton's State Department. "

Oh. So, no hot "scoop" then. No story then. No there, there?

That didn't stop both Donald Trump and Paul Ryan from going on about it. How much more of this cynical lying and cheating are we going to put up with before we put the entire Republican Party in mothballs?

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