Judicial Watch claims, in a fundraising email, that the Trump administration’s Justice Department is obstructing Judicial Watch’s (JW) pursuit of records pertaining to last year’s tarmac meeting between then Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Bill Clinton.
The Lynch-Clinton meeting took place on June 27, 2016, while Hillary Clinton’s negligent handling of classified information during her tenure as Secretary of State was, ostensibly, being investigated by the FBI under the stewardship of then-FBI Director James Comey.
JW says talking points, composed by the Obama administration, regarding the Lynch-Clinton meeting were redacted by the current Justice Department under a legal exemption allowing the federal government to withhold deliberative information pursued by citizens via Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests.
JW President Tom Fitton explained the Trump administration’s de facto protection of the Clintons in a video published on September 29. Partial transcript below.
[Obama administration talking points regarding the Lynch-Clinton meeting] were blacked out by the Justice Department run by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, an appointee of President Trump. Isn’t that outrageous? …
If true, it’s really surprising, and frankly jaw-dropping that the Trump administration is blacking out this key information about that infamous Clinton-Lynch tarmac meeting. This information, these talking points, are how they spun the scandal; and we can’t get access to that under this Trump administration. They’re making a discretionary call to black out this information.
Frankly, President Trump should directly order the release of these records. …
We are in August, and the Justice Department is acting as if Hillary Clinton won the election, and acting in a way that continues to protect Hillary Clinton and the Obama administration. …
The fact that we are in court battling the Trump administration on Clinton scandal information, to me, is just unbelievable.
“The FBI is out of control,” wrote Fitton, following the FBI’s revelatory discovery of 30 pages of documents (the FBI previously claimed to be unable to locate any such documents) related to the Lynch-Clinton meeting.
Via the FOIA lawsuit, JW is seeking the following:
All FD-302 forms prepared pursuant to the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s investigation of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server during her tenure.
All records of communications between any agent, employee, or representative of the Federal Bureau of Investigation regarding, concerning, or related to the aforementioned investigation. This request includes, but is not limited to, any related communications with any official, employee, or representative of the Department of Justice, the Executive Office of the President, the Democratic National Committee, and/or the presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton.
All records related to the meeting between Attorney General Lynch and former President Bill Clinton on June 27, 2016.
JW notes the extension of immunity agreements to various Clinton confidantes by the Obama administration:
The Obama administration extended numerous immunity agreements, including: Clinton’s former Chief of Staff Cheryl Mills; John Bentel, former director of the State Department’s Office of Information Resources Management; Heather Samuelson, Clinton’s executive assistant; Brian Pagliano, an IT employee at the State Department who serviced the Clinton non-government server, and an employee at Platt River Networks, the company that maintained it. It is not clear whether Hillary Clinton received some type of immunity.
Watch Fitton’s commentary below:
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