FBI director Comey defends handling of Clinton, Trump email probes

FBI Director James Comey on Wednesday defended his decision to tell Congress in October that he was revisiting the bureau's investigation into Hillary Clinton's emails.

"It makes me mildly nauseous to think that we might have had some impact on the election", Comey said during a four hour hearing before the US Senate Judiciary Committee. But he told the Senate Judiciary Committee the Federal Bureau of Investigation can not take into account how its actions might benefit or harm politicians.

"I can't consider for a second whose political futures will be affected and in what way", Comey said.

"The reason why I believe we lost were the intervening events in the last 10 days".

The New York Times reported that Comey's "misgivings" about Lynch were fueled by the discovery previous year of a document "written by a Democratic operative that seemed - at least in the eyes of Mr. Comey and his aides - to raise questions about her independence". Not doing so amounted to "concealment", which he said would have been "catastrophic". Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, right, and the committee's ranking member Sen.

Late Tuesday evening Trump posted tweets saying, among other things, "FBI Director Comey was the best thing that ever happened to Hillary Clinton in that he gave her a free pass for many bad deeds!"

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Meanwhile, at a historic first meeting between the leader of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, and the U.S. president at the White House, Mr Trump said his administration would "get it done" regarding a peace process with Israel. Dianne Feinstein, Comey revealed new details about how Clinton's private-server emails ended up on the shamed Weiner's computer - where they were discovered during a separate probe of Weiner's possible inappropriate communications with a minor, the Post reported.

But Comey said that other than confirming the Clinton investigation existed, he did not discuss it until after it concluded past year. Comey said if he finds out people leaked information about FBI investigations, "there will be severe consequences".

USA intelligence officials have blamed Russian intelligence services for interfering in the election through the hacking of Democratic email accounts.

Senators on Wednesday asked Comey why he made a decision to go public with the investigation of Clinton but not the investigation of whether Republican Donald Trump or his associates had inappropriate contact with Russian agents. He likened the site to "intelligence porn" and said it pushed out information to damage the United States.

Comey said the Russian Federation investigation at the time was in its early stages and classified, unlike the finished Clinton investigation. Last week, congressional officials said Michael Flynn, Trump's first national security adviser, appeared to violate federal law when he failed to seek permission or inform the US government about accepting tens of thousands of dollars from Russian organizations after a trip there in 2015.

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