FROM Patrice McDermott
E-Mail Gate: Is it Real or Politics as Usual? Hillary Clinton has joked about it, called it partisan and blamed it on turf wars between federal agencies, but questions about her use of private email as Secretary of State are not going away. Some intelligence officials say some messages should have been classified – two of them as Top Secret. The FBI is investigating a possible crime, and polls show serious damage to her credibility with the voters. Has Clinton’s damage-control effort backfired? Is the controversy creating an opening for Joe Biden to launch a campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination?
Is Our Government Keeping Too Many Secrets? Bill Clinton's Attorney General, Janet Reno, ordered that government agencies should tell American citizens what they wanted to know, as long as it would "do no harm." After September 11, John Ashcroft changed the standard to tell the public less, rather than more, saying he would defend in court any legal argument against releasing information. While the argument is that, especially in times of war, it's best to err on the side of caution, critics contend that too much secrecy is counterproductive and destroys the openness that leads to trust in representative government. Last week, the House passed what's called "sunshine" legislation . If it passes the Senate, the White House threatens a presidential veto. We talk about privacy, national security--and political embarrassment.
Is the threat from Russia missing from the Russia meddling probe? There's much being made about the Trump administration's possible ties with Russia. But the bottom line is Russia's effort to influence American democracy. Do the President and his aides care enough to take action before voters go back to the polls?
Ex-FBI Director Comey tells his side of the story Today, former FBI Director James Comey came close to calling the President who fired him a liar. The White House denied the claim and called it insulting, but Republican Senators did not challenge Comey’s truthfulness. Many questions remain: did the President try to obstruct a federal investigation? Later, we’ll go behind the “velvet rope” for a look at 5-Star health care for the richest Americans.