Wednesday, August 26, 2015 Disqualified?

I had meant to do this one with yesterday's grand catch up post, but somehow it slipped through the cracks.

Former Attorney General: Clinton may have “disqualified herself for elected office”
. . . But then, in response to one question from Scarborough, Mukasey went a step further and said that Clinton may have disqualified herself from elected office if the allegations prove to be true. . . . But when the former AG was pressed on the question, he informed the panel that he was speaking specifically of federal statute. Joking that it was a common subject around his family’s breakfast table, he said, “Title 18. Section 2071.”

Let’s take a look at what he’s talking about. The statute starts out like this in paragraph (a):
Whoever willfully and unlawfully conceals, removes, mutilates, obliterates, or destroys, or attempts to do so, or, with intent to do so takes and carries away any record, proceeding, map, book, paper, document, or other thing, filed or deposited with any clerk or officer of any court of the United States, or in any public office, or with any judicial or public officer of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.
That’s along the same lines as things we’ve been discussing all along. But the big news is in paragraph (b). (Emphasis added)
Whoever, having the custody of any such record, proceeding, map, book, document, paper, or other thing, willfully and unlawfully conceals, removes, mutilates, obliterates, falsifies, or destroys the same, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both; and shall forfeit his office and be disqualified from holding any office under the United States. . . .
Wouldn’t wiping classified records (assuming that’s proven by the FBI) from your private server, or directing others to do that to the server while it’s sitting in a bathroom in Colorado, qualify as removing, obliterating or destroying said records?
But then Ace comes along to bust the bubble:
But Charles Cooke suggested to me that would be hard to "litigate" in court. In fact, actually, I think it might be too easy to litigate -- and dispose of. The Supreme Court has ruled the qualifications listed in the Constitution (age, natural born citizen) are the exclusive qualifications that may be imposed on a candidate, and may not be added to by a mere act of Congress no more than they can be set aside by an act of Congress. It would take an Amendment to add to, or subtract from, those constitutional qualifications, and thus this law would be ruled, I think, to not apply in the case of La Hillary.*

Which actually you can see the sense of -- otherwise an Obama-type president, with a Holder-type AG, might attempt to make mischief by making up and prosecuting the opposing party's best candidates for laws which claim to "disqualify" people from US office, should such laws be claimed to have been violated.
Oh well; it might be fun to litigate anyway. Hillary's defense would have to be that only the constitution can make being a corrupt, dirtball who played fast and loose with national security ineligible for office and it hasn't.

Speaking of compromising national security: Did a hacked Hillary email set up the ambush of Ambassador Christopher Stevens?
ISIS has proven itself adept enough at information technology that a successful hack of Hillary Clinton’s server at her Chappaqua mansion cannot be ruled out, no matter how many Secret Service members stood guard. Apparently unbeknownst to the former secretary of state who boasted of the server’s security because of the guards outside, it is so easy to hack a garden variety server set up by a mom-and-pop operation that an ISIS (and Russian intelligence and Chinese and Romanian and many other agencies) hack is well within the realm of possibility.

Now consider what the New York Post reported yesterday, six paragraphs into a story. Paul Sperry writes:
US intelligence officials so far have determined that at least four — and as many as 305 — of the more than 30,000 e-mails Clinton and her aides have printed out and turned over to investigators were classified at the time they were written.
They include a 2011 message from Clinton’s top aides that contains military intelligence from United States Africa Command gleaned from satellite images of troop movements in Libya, along with the travel and protection plans for Ambassador Christopher Stevens, who was later killed in a terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya. Another staff ­e-mail sent to Clinton in 2012 contained investigative data about Benghazi terrorist suspects wanted by the FBI. (emphasis added)
I think we can safely assume that anything on the servers was read by multiple foreign intelligence agencies. Was it passed on to ISIS? I wouldn't put it past Putin. My guess is that we'll never know for sure, unless we waterboard a few top ISIS operatives. And even then, I doubt a Democratic administration would cop to it.

Video: Obama EO required Hillary to follow classification of originating agencies

So was it Huma that filed off the Top Secret marks before passing it on to Hillary?

GOP senator accuses Clinton of improperly passing state secrets to her lawyer
In a “serious risk” to national security, Hillary Clinton gave her State Department emails containing Top Secret and other classified information to her lawyer, who lacked sufficient clearances to possess it and who kept it for as long as eight months, the Republican Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee charged Tuesday.

In a letter to her successor Secretary of State John Kerry, Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa said when she turned over thumb drives containing her official emails to her lawyer, “it appears Secretary Clinton sent (Top Secret/Sensitive Compartmented Information) to an unauthorized person.”

Grassley, who has sent multiple demanding letters in the controversy over Clinton’s use of a private email server, said: “The transmission of classified material to an individual unauthorized to possess it is a serious national security risk (and) it raises legitimate questions as to whether the information was properly secured from foreign governments and other entities.”

David Kendall, the prominent Washington attorney who has represented Clinton for 20 years or more, had written Grassley just a day earlier that when Clinton turned over her 30,490 official emails to the State Department on Dec. 5, 2014, “none of those emails was classified.”
These are the 30,000 work related emails that Hillary admits to having sent and received on a private, unsecured server, and which she turned over to the State Department (as printed copies, to make indexing and searching as hard as possible) and not the other 30,000 she determined too dangerous personal to turn over to the government, and had destroyed (although a back up may exist, and the FBI might be able to resurrect some of the files from the wiped server).

We know, of course, that Kendall is lying wrong. At least 300 of the emails (out of the first 6000 checked) contained classified information.

Kiss of death for Hillary? Obama reportedly gives Biden his blessing to run for president
The President is enough of a cold-blooded politician to know that a considerable part of his legacy will depend on whether a Democrat succeeds him in the Oval Office. Above personal feelings, he wants a Democratic nominee who can win in 2016.

Mr. Biden ran for President in 1988 and 2008 and lost, so why would he be a better candidate now? The Veep would be starting late, and most Democratic officeholders and donors are already committed to Hillary and Bill. Mr. Biden might figure he can run as a more authentic tribune of the middle class, but Bernie Sanders has a head start running as the economic populist. On paper at least, Mr. Biden would still be a long shot to defeat the Clinton machine.

Which leads us to wonder what Mr. Biden and Mr. Obama know about Mrs. Clinton’s mishandling of classified information on her personal email server while running the State Department. The FBI is now investigating, and it’s hard to believe the White House wouldn’t have some inkling about the seriousness of that probe.
Watchdog: US Ambassador Kennedy used private email
Senior staff at the U.S. Embassy to Japan, including Ambassador Caroline Kennedy, have used personal email accounts for official business, an internal watchdog said in a report Tuesday. Some emails contained sensitive information.

The State Department's Office of Inspector General said that it identified instances where emails labeled "sensitive but unclassified" were sent from or received by personal email accounts. Department policy is that employees generally should not use such accounts for official business, the watchdog's office said.

"Employees are also expected to use approved, secure methods to transmit sensitive but unclassified information when available and practical," says the report.

State Department spokesman John Kirby said that although Kennedy did "infrequently" use private email, there was no indication she violated department policy, which allows its sparing and careful use if the information sent or received is then archived in a government system. He said classified information was not sent by private email, and that Kennedy did not use a personal email server.
I don't find this one an especially big deal. Sometimes using the government mail system is just really inconvenient, and if you need to send something that you run across at home, it makes sense to send it from a home account. It sounds like she stayed within bounds. But it is another example of the entitled mentality of our semi-hereditary ruling class.

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