Attorney General Loretta Lynch will accept whatever recommendation career prosecutors and the FBI director make in the Hillary Clinton email server investigation, a Justice Department official told the Associated Press Friday. The move assuages concerns that Lynch, a political appointee and a Democrat, might have overruled investigators.
“The Attorney General expects to receive and accept the determinations and findings of the Department’s career prosecutors and investigators, as well as the FBI Director,” the official said. According to the AP, Lynch is expected to address the matter further at the Aspen Ideas Summit on Friday.
Ms. Lynch said that the meeting with Mr. Clinton was unplanned, largely social and did not touch on the email investigation. She suggested that he walked uninvited from his plane to her government plane, both of which were parked on a tarmac at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.
“He did come over and say hello, and speak to my husband and myself, and talk about his grandchildren and his travels and things like that,” Ms. Lynch said at a news conference in Los Angeles on Wednesday, where she was promoting community policing. “That was the extent of that. And no discussions were held into any cases or things like that.”
Nevertheless, Republican lawmakers like Texas senator John Cornyn, a member of the Judiciary Committee, took the opportunity to raise questions about the integrity of the Justice Department’s investigation. “In light of the apparent conflicts of interest, I have called repeatedly on Attorney General Lynch to appoint a special counsel to ensure the investigation is as far from politics as possible,” he said in a statement.
Federal investigators have already interviewed top Clinton aides Cheryl Mills and Huma Abedin, the AP reports, although they have not questioned Clinton herself. FBI Director James Comey has said there is no timeline for concluding the investigation.