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    U.S. appeals court revives Clinton email suit


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    U.S. appeals court revives Clinton email suit

    Post  sinister_midget on Tue Dec 27, 2016 8:05 pm

    U.S. appeals court revives Clinton email suit

    In a new legal development on the controversy over former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's emails, an appeals court on Tuesday reversed a lower court ruling and said two U.S. government agencies should have done more to recover the emails.

    The ruling from Judge Stephen Williams, of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, revives one of a number of legal challenges involving Clinton's handling of government emails when she was secretary of state from 2009 to 2013.

    Clinton, the 2016 Democratic presidential nominee, used a private email server housed at her New York home to handle State Department emails. She handed over 55,000 emails to U.S. officials probing that system, but did not release about 30,000 she said were personal and not work related.

    The email case shadowed Clinton's loss to Republican Donald Trump in the Nov. 8 presidential election. Trump, who had repeatedly said during the bruising campaign that if elected he would prosecute Clinton, said after the election he had no interest in pursuing investigations into Clinton's email use.

    While the State Department and National Archives took steps to recover the emails from Clinton's tenure, they did not ask the U.S. attorney general to take enforcement action. Two conservative groups filed lawsuits to force their hand.

    A district judge in January ruled the suits brought by Judicial Watch and Cause of Action moot, saying State and the National Archives made a "sustained effort" to recover and preserve Clinton's records.

    But Williams said the two agencies should have done more, according to the ruling in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Since the agencies neither asked the attorney general for help nor showed such enforcement action could not uncover new emails, the case was not moot.

    "The Department has not explained why shaking the tree harder - e.g., by following the statutory mandate to seek action by the Attorney General - might not bear more still," Williams wrote. "Absent a showing that the requested enforcement action could not shake loose a few more emails, the case is not moot."

    Judicial Watch or no, this isn't going away. Even if Trump really did say - and mean - he's not interested in prosecuting The Wicked Biotch, it's a legal thing. The new AG can still go after her with or without Trump's agreement if evidence is that a crime was committed. (Even 90% of the left knows there was one or more crimes, but they thought she should be let go for supposedly good intentions.)

    Her only real escape is exile to a country without an extradition treaty with us. I'd suggest moving to the Ecuadoran embassy in Britain and asking for asylum. Maybe down or across the hall from Assange.

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    Re: U.S. appeals court revives Clinton email suit

    Post  sinister_midget on Tue Dec 27, 2016 8:24 pm

    OK. Here's another out. But even it has more holes in it than swiss cheese.

    Will Obama pardon Clinton? And if he does, will she accept?

    In dashing through his last few weeks in office, will one of Obama's final acts be to pardon Hillary Clinton for any violations of federal law she might have committed while she was secretary of State?

    It's an interesting and complex question.

    We should first note that the Obama administration's decision not to prosecute Clinton would not bind the Trump administration. Until relevant statutes of limitations have expired, she could still be prosecuted by the new administration. It is possible, in my opinion, for Clinton to be prosecuted for either her improper handling of classified information on her "home brew" email server or allegations of "pay to play" arrangements between the secretary of State and donors to the Clinton Foundation, which could constitute bribery.

    The statute of limitations for most federal crimes is five years from the commission of the offense; that would apply to the two categories relevant to Clinton. Her tenure as secretary of State ended Feb. 1, 2013, so it is possible that the statute of limitations will not run until Feb. 1, 2018, more than a year after Donald Trump takes office.

    What looks like one question — will the president pardon Clinton? — turns out, on analysis, to be two. The first question is: Would Clinton wish to receive a pardon?

    That question seems to be a proverbial no-brainer. Surely, any person who had been in federal government would be eager to receive a presidential pardon, because it eliminates even the possibility of federal prosecution. That looks like all upside and no downside.

    But there is a downside, and it isn't trivial. A pardon must be accepted by the person who is pardoned if it is to effectively stymie any prosecution.

    Furthermore, there is solid legal precedent that acceptance of a pardon is equivalent to confession of guilt. A U.S. Supreme Court case from 1915 called Burdick v. U.S. establishes that principle; it has never been overturned.

    If acceptance of a pardon by Clinton would amount to confession of guilt, would she nevertheless accept it? A multitude of factors would go into her decision.

    She, together with her attorneys, would have to decide how likely it is that the Trump administration would prosecute her, and, if it did decide to prosecute, how likely the administration would be able to prove she had committed crimes.

    Since being elected, Trump has been remarkably warm towards the person he used to call "Crooked Hillary." But how confident could Clinton be that the Justice Department, under a Trump administration, would not prosecute?

    Prosecutorial decisions are supposed to be independent of political considerations, so Trump's recent friendliness should not be controlling once the new attorney general is in office.

    If Clinton believes prosecutors might be able to make a strong case against her, the value to her of a pardon increases. If she is confident that any case against her would be weak or even futile, the pardon has less value.

    If Clinton decides that, everything considered, she would prefer to receive a pardon, she would no doubt be able to convey that message to Obama, and then the ball would be in his court. Thus, the second question is: Would Obama grant Clinton's request for a pardon?

    From Obama's perspective, the decision to grant or withhold a pardon is a political and a personal one. Legal considerations do not directly arise.

    Like all presidents at the end of their terms, he is concerned about the legacy he leaves for history. Does he want his legacy to include a pardon of the secretary of State who served under him during the entirety of his first term in office?

    Because acceptance of a pardon amounts to a confession of guilt, the acceptance by Clinton would, to a degree, besmirch both Clinton and also Obama. After all, Clinton was Obama's secretary of State. If she was committing illegal acts as secretary, it happened literally on his watch.

    On the other hand, if the new administration were to prosecute and convict Clinton of crimes committed while she was secretary, that might be an even greater embarrassment for Obama post-presidency.

    In addition to calculations regarding his legacy, Obama and Clinton surely have developed over many years, both as opponents and as teammates, a personal relationship. If Clinton were to ask Obama for a pardon, how would that personal relationship play into his response? I cannot say.

    Days after Trump won the election, the White House press secretary was asked by Jordan Fabian of The Hill whether Obama would consider pardoning Clinton. He carefully avoided a direct answer.

    Instead, the press secretary said that, in cases where Obama had granted pardons, "[w]e didn’t talk in advance about those decisions." He also expressed hope that the new administration would follow "a long tradition in this country of people in power not using the criminal justice system to exact political revenge."

    Of course, there is also a long tradition in this country that no one is above the law, no matter how high a position in government he or she might have formerly occupied.

    Let's say he pardons her. What does that mean?

    It means crimes that happened while she was in office would be forgiven. It would  be an admission of guilt if she accepts it. I'm not sure she'd want that, but that's her only choice.

    But that still leaves all of the other crimes. The Clinton Crime Foundation is being investigated in several states, most of them independently. It's also being investigated by the FBI (a real tiger of a prosecution team against corruption at that). None of that would be touched by a pardon. Some of it targets William Jefferson Rodham specifically. But she's going to be connected even there. And some of the others are more general, meaning she's being looked at, too.

    So, she gets pardoned for crimes she claims weren't crimes, accepts it, thereby admitting guilt, then ends up being prosecuted anyway for other crimes.

    Not a good option for her, though it would allow Emperor Hussein's blatant lies about not knowing until he heard it on the news escape scrutiny. Plus she could always turn state's evidence in that area later anyway since she wouldn't be prosecutable and she might be able to reduce other charges in exchange. Paying Barry back for his pardon by selling him out if you will.

    Of course, there's still the elephant in the room. She could leave the country for good (for the good of all of us) and never have to worry about any of that if she goes to one that won't extradite her. She has enough crooked money she could probably even keep Webb's daughter, Chelsea, safe for the rest of her life. But if she decides to go this route she'd better make up her mind soon. After 12PM January 20 it may be too late. (There's also the question of getting Bubba to escape. But I really don't think she cares in that regard because she's already used him for everything she could get out of him and he's no longer needed.)

      Current date/time is Mon Jun 18, 2018 12:43 am