The FBI’s shield is forever tarnished. James Comey’s handling of the whole Clinton email affair wreaks of partisan political abuse of authority and certainly raises questions about his integrity and judgment. From his original convoluted press conference in July where he made unprecedented comments about the results of an investigation to his final pronouncement there was nothing relevant to the additional emails they reviewed on the Friday before the election is dismaying. I believe his attempts to try to please everyone ended up pleasing no one and compromised a national presidential election. His original press conference tried to pander to Republicans in Congress who hung their hat on criminal behavior in the email controversy. He found no criminal intent on Hillary Clinton’s part but then went on to convict her in the court of public opinion in a rambling, contradictory oratory.
With just 11 days to go before the election he created huge controversy by needlessly sending a letter to Congress in violation of Justice Department protocols and gave Donald Trump everything he needed to skewer Clinton while early voting went on for nine days while the FBI conducted its review. Who knows how much damage was done by way of changing votes of people who may have believed a criminal indictment was imminent. Comeys's stonewalling and thumbing his nose at the world while the election drew closer and closer without any answers was unacceptable and a pretty good indicator of what his true motives were.
Comey's lack of commitment to basic principles of fundamental fairness raises serious questions about whether he should be at the helm of the bureau. We must guard against the FBI becoming a rogue agency spinning out of control and dangerous to our democracy. News reports of "conservatives" in the bureau who were upset that the Clinton Foundation wasn't investigated is an eye opener. Conservatism, liberalism or any other political bent has no place in the FBI. The FBI has to be apolitical to be fair and impartial to anyone who is investigated. Anything less puts it in the same mode of the KGB. It is a sign of the poisonous political climate that exists in Washington DC.
This is not something new resulting from the Directors deliberate and malicious influence of the outcome of the presidential election. The FBI has always acted with contempt toward any effort to reign it in. The FBI should have been rolled into the Department of Homeland Security along with other law enforcement agencies when DHS was created following 9/11 in my opinion. The FBI Director should have been made answerable to the Secretary of Homeland Security to ensure clear lines of authority and accountability and to break the culture of secrecy, lack of interagency cooperation and political manipulation. Unchecked power in democracy is malignant and needs to be removed. The FBI Director has proven that power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.