By: Roger Aronoff | Accuracy in Media
A recently revealed connection between Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, a local Virginia politician and the FBI exposes, at the very least, another deceptive conflict of interest that was likely intended to help protect the viability of Hillary Clinton’s presidential ambitions. These politicians believe they can get away with such actions because they trust that they can count on a complicit mainstream media to cover for their corruption.
A case in point is the funding McAuliffe arranged for Dr. Jill McCabe, the wife of the future deputy director of the FBI, Andrew McCabe. McAuliffe steered nearly $500,000 from his political action committee, Common Good VA, and another approximately $200,000 from the Virginia Democratic Party to Mrs. McCabe for her state senate campaign in 2015. Her campaign had a total budget of $1.8 million, and according to The Washington Post, in 2015 the state allowed candidates to use campaign funds for personal expenses so long as the campaign was operating.
“No, it’s not at all a normal amount [of money],” said State Senator Dick Black, the incumbent who defeated McCabe in 2015 and kept the seat, on the Steve Batton Show. “In fact, the amount that was involved is comparable to what you would have in a full congressional, a hotly contested congressional race.” Black, who served as a pilot for the Marines during the Vietnam War, was later the head of the Criminal Law Division at the Pentagon.
“The amount of money that was put in was astounding,” Black continued. “It was four times as much as the Democrats had put into the former race when this was an open seat.” At the time that Jill McCabe announced her campaign, her husband Andrew was running the Washington, D.C. field office of the FBI. He was later promoted to the number three position, and then promoted to deputy director. His wife’s campaign failed, and, according to The Washington Post, Andrew McCabe avoided handling Virginia public corruption cases during her campaign and didn’t “participate in” campaign events.
Yet, given that the main funder of his wife’s campaign, Governor McAuliffe, is a long-time Clinton ally who chaired Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign and chaired the Democratic National Committee, Andrew McCabe should have recused himself from the Hillary Clinton investigation—no matter at what level he was serving.
According to a cutting Wall Street Journal editorial, “All of this asks voters to believe that Mr. McCabe as the No. 3 official at the FBI had nothing to do with the biggest, most sensitive case at that agency. This strains credulity.” It was the Journal that broke the story this week about McAuliffe steering money to McCabe.
The editorial continues, “Before he became No. 3 at the FBI Mr. McCabe ran the bureau’s Washington, D.C. field office that provided resources to the Clinton probe. Campaign-finance records show that 98% of the McAuliffe donations to Mrs. McCabe came after the FBI launched its Clinton probe.”
Three months after McCabe’s defeat, her husband became the FBI deputy director helping to oversee the Clinton email case. Not only does this have the appearance of impropriety—it doesn’t pass the smell test.
“So the Democratic Party actually suspected that this woman was a Republican because she hadn’t been active in any politics,” said Black. “She came out of the blue, which was quite mysterious. Why this woman, why was she chosen?” Black described how another Democratic Party operative had already filed to run for the state senate seat, but the party decided that Jill McCabe would be the candidate—without holding a primary.
As we have reported, the whole FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of classified email and private server stinks—and the fix was clearly in. Not only did the FBI grant immunity to five people deeply involved in the case, it also made a deal to destroy evidence on two witnesses’ computers once it finished reviewing material found on them. “Sources said the arrangement with former Clinton chief of staff Cheryl Mills and ex-campaign staffer Heather Samuelson also limited the search to no later than Jan. 31, 2015,” reported Fox News. “This meant investigators could not review documents for the period after the email server became public—in turn preventing the bureau from discovering if there was any evidence of obstruction of justice, sources said.”
In addition, the FBI failed to empanel a grand jury to look into the case, instead relying on non-aggressive interviews which were not recorded.
We have long maintained that EmailGate is not just about hiding information from the public, but is also a national security scandal. The Obama administration is clearly using political considerations to determine who receives punishment for mishandling the nation’s secrets. Among the latest WikiLeaks revelations is further proof that President Obama was well aware that Mrs. Clinton was doing government business from a private, unsecured server, though he denied it, and that staff members were scrambling to figure out how to contain the fallout.
The Washington Post reports that another government official who mishandled classified information, leaking it to the press, failed to escape judgment. Former Joint Chiefs of Staff Vice Chairman General James E. Cartwright’s “greatest mistake was not talking to reporters or lying about it; he failed to play the Washington game skillfully enough to avoid becoming a scapegoat for a system in which senior officials skirt the rules and then fall back on their political power to save them,” writes Josh Rogin for the Post. He describes how Cartwright “was a pariah to many of the Very Important People in Washington’s national security elite.”
Cartwright “pleaded guilty to the felony charge of lying to the FBI during its investigation into the leaking of classified information about covert operations against Iran to two journalists” and could face up to five years in jail and a $250,000 fine, writes Rogin.
Before that, Cartwright was known as “Obama’s favorite general.” But clearly that is no longer the case, or presumably he would have gotten off scot-free, just like Hillary, from the highly politicized Obama Justice Department. Hillary’s mishandling of classified material was part of her daily routine for years—far more egregious than anything that Cartwright did.
As Rogin pointed out in the Post article, Cartwright spoke to The New York Times’ David Sanger about the Stuxnet program designed to slow down Iran’s quest for nuclear weapons. Sanger had previously “had meetings on Iran with several other high-profile administration officials, including National Security Adviser Tom Donilon, Deputy Secretary of State Bill Burns and even Clinton herself. There’s no evidence of any other Stuxnet leak investigations of high-level officials.”
But only Cartwright is taking the fall. “In his statement taking responsibility for lying to the FBI,” writes Rogin, “Cartwright asserted his motivations were patriotic. ‘My only goal in talking to the reporters was to protect American interests and lives; I love my country and continue to this day to do everything I can to defend it.’” We may have to wait for Cartwright’s memoir to find out the rest of this story.
In 2013, the Times’ Sanger said that the Obama administration was the “most closed, control-freak administration” he’d ever covered. But Hillary got a pass, in order to run for the White House to succeed President Obama. We have reported on how this administration has systematically and to an unprecedented level targeted leakers and journalists.
But the whitewash of an FBI investigation into Mrs. Clinton’s email practices is looking more and more like a cover-up. That the McCabes felt indebted to Clinton associate McAuliffe cannot be definitively proven, but it defies common sense to assume that they both were purely impartial about the investigation into Hillary. If only the mainstream media would do their job and report on the facts of this case, instead of simply lambasting Donald Trump and his supporters for his inartful comments. If only.
Roger Aronoff is the Editor of Accuracy in Media, and a member of the Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi. He can be contacted at [email protected]. View the complete archives from Roger Aronoff.