On Wednesday’s broadcast of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” co-host Mika Brzezinski and Bloomberg Politics Managing Editors Mark Halperin and John Heilemann described the timing of former President Bill Clinton’s meeting with Attorney General Loretta Lynch, a report in the New York Times that the Clintons were considering keeping Lynch on as AG, the FBI’s decision not to pursue charges against presumptive Democratic presidential nominee former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and President Obama campaigning with Clinton as “rotten,” and not a coincidence.
Brzezinski said that it was “strange” that President Obama spoke out on the case back in April. After playing a clip of Obama’s statement on the case in April and October, co-host and former Republican Congressman Joe Scarborough said that the FBI agents working on the Clinton case were “absolutely outraged that the president of the United States tried to bigfoot the investigation all the way back in October. It was so inappropriate.”
Brzezinski then stated, “So, flash forward to eight day days ago when President Bill Clinton had a private meeting with Attorney General Loretta Lynch on a tarmac in Phoenix. He made a point of getting on her plane to talk to her. Lynch says they discussed personal issues like golf and grandkids, unrelated to the investigation of Secretary Clinton, only it was followed up, days later, in the New York Times, which reported that the Clintons appeared to dangle a job in front of the attorney general.”
Heilemann said that “This thing in the New York Times coming directly after that, in what appears to be a choreographed way, that they decided to leak through, cutouts to the New York Times the notion that Lynch might be retained in the administration, it just makes the whole thing stink. And, it makes the whole thing stink, and it just provides, again, such fodder to Trump’s arguments about, this is just a rigged system. It’s a corrupt elite, a corrupt establishment. Another — this whole thing is just rotten to the core. It — just, so, self — it’s just so, self-lacerating that they engage in this behavior.”
Brzezinski stated, “for like five days, you’ve got the meeting with Bill Clinton and Loretta Lynch. You have the New York Times article dangling the job. You have the secret meeting with the FBI, tucked away on a July 4th meeting, on a Saturday morning. It just happened to be on a Saturday morning July Fourth weekend. It just happened to be. And then, as the news breaks that there’s no charges. There’s no charges, but the president is live, at 5:00 pm, in North Carolina, with Hillary Clinton flying down on Air Force One, to step on the news cycle. Are you kidding me? I’m sorry. Are we this stupid?”
Halperin later added, “I agree with Mika. You can’t look at the timing of this series of events, and just — we — our role as journalists is to question people in government. It doesn’t mean we’re questioning their integrity. But, how could these things be a coincidence, from the meeting, to the Saturday interview, to Comey’s decision, to the day President Obama was campaigning with her? There’s something else going on here. There’s just too much coordination. And I don’t question Comey’s integrity. But his decision to do what he did, when he did it, and come out and claim –I think there needs to be transparency. There needs to be accountability. He answered no questions from the press. He decided what evidence he was going to cite. I can see the Clinton people being furious at that, but I also see Republicans, of course, are furious for the judgment he reached. There needs to be real transparency and accountability for something so important.”