According to FBI agents who spoke to Fox News off the record, the agency’s investigation into the Clinton Foundation – now moving into its second year – has become a “very high priority” matter within the Bureau.
“There is an avalanche of new information coming in every day,” a source told the network. They said that some of the relevant information has been gleaned from WikiLeaks and the hacked emails of Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta.
The question at the heart of the investigation: Did Hillary Clinton run a pay for play scheme while serving as Obama’s secretary of state? Official State Department visitor logs show that major donors to the Clinton Foundation received special access to Hillary.
The Fox News story broke in conjunction with another report from the Wall Street Journal, which shows that the FBI and the Justice Department have been at odds for months regarding the inquiry into the Clinton’s charity.
“Secret recordings of a suspect talking about the Clinton Foundation fueled an internal battle between FBI agents who wanted to pursue the case and corruption prosecutors who viewed the statements as worthless hearsay, people familiar with the matter said,” reported the Wall Street Journal.
According to insiders at the Bureau, Justice Department prosecutors have been skeptical of the investigation, largely because it was initiated on the basis of Peter Schweizer’s book, Clinton Cash. They felt the book’s evidence was thin and provided little cause for a deeper investigation.
But FBI sources say that while the DOJ might have had a point about the book, subsequent interviews and revelations gave the agency plenty of reasons to move forward.
The FBI had secretly recorded conversations of a suspect in a public-corruption case talking about alleged deals the Clintons made, these people said. The agents listening to the recordings couldn’t tell from the conversations if what the suspect was describing was accurate, but it was, they thought, worth checking out.
These insider revelations come at a time when many are deeply concerned about the role politics is playing inside the FBI and the Justice Department. Republicans and Democrats alike have sharply criticized both departments over the last year, each claiming at different times that officials are letting bias color what should be an objective investigation into Hillary Clinton’s activities.
But for many voters, the mere fact that a presidential candidate is under not one but two FBI investigations is enough to make her ineligible for the presidency.