ON AIR NOW

LISTEN NOW

Weather

heavy-rain-night Created with Sketch.
67°
Overcast
H 75° L 62°
  • heavy-rain-night Created with Sketch.
    67°
    Current Conditions
    Sct Thunderstorms. H 75° L 62°
  • partly-cloudy-tstorms-day Created with Sketch.
    69°
    Afternoon
    Sct Thunderstorms. H 75° L 62°
  • clear-day Created with Sketch.
    74°
    Evening
    Sunny. H 78° L 49°
LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Krmg news on demand

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Krmg traffic on demand

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Krmg weather on demand

00:00 | 00:00

National Govt & Politics
Clinton emails: State official accused of offering FBI 'quid pro quo' to unclassify email
Close

Clinton emails: State official accused of offering FBI 'quid pro quo' to unclassify email

Clinton emails: State official accused of offering FBI 'quid pro quo' to unclassify email
Photo Credit: Mark Wilson
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (L) and Patrick Kennedy (R) under secretary for managment State Department, participate in a town hall meeting at the State Department July 10, 2009 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Clinton emails: State official accused of offering FBI 'quid pro quo' to unclassify email

A top State Department official offered the FBI a "quid pro quo" in exchange for unclassifying one of Hillary Clinton's emails amid a probe into the former secretary of state's use of a private email server, according to documents released Monday by federal investigators.

>> Read more trending stories

The allegation was detailed in notes from an interview that took place in July 2015 with an unnamed official in the FBI's Records Management Division.

"(Redacted) received a call from (redacted) of the International Operations Division (IOD) of the FBI, who 'pressured' him to change the classified email to unclassified. (Redacted) indicated he had been contacted by PATRICK KENNEDY, Undersecretary of State, who had asked his assistance in altering the email's classification in exchange for a 'quid pro quo,'" according to the interview notes.

"(Redacted) advised that, in exchange for marking the email unclassified, STATE would reciprocate by allowing the FBI to place more Agents in countries where they were presently forbidden."

>> Related: WikiLeaks emails: Trump questions whether DOJ, Clinton 'colluded' on email probe

The call was allegedly made as authorities reviewed five of Clinton's emails in response to a Freedom of Information Act request.

At a later all-agency meeting, "a participant specifically asked whether any of the emails in question were classified. Making eye contact with (redacted) KENNEDY remarked 'Well, we'll see,'" according to the interview notes.

The interviewee believed the comment was in reference to the email Kennedy, who is not related to the late Sen. Ted Kennedy, was attempting to get unclassified.

Kennedy argued for unclassifying the email during a 15-minute exchange at the meeting, although authorities declined to change its status. Kennedy asked to speak with someone else about the classification and was referred to Michael Steinbach, assistant director of the Counter-Terrorism Division.

>> Related: WikiLeaks emails: Apologies Clinton's 'Achilles' heel,' adviser says

During a subsequent conference call, "KENNEDY continued to pressure the FBI to change the classified markings on the email to unclassified. STEINBACH refused to do so," the interview notes state.

The interview subject told investigators that he "believes STATE has an agenda which involves minimizing the classified nature of the CLINTON emails in order to protect STATE interests and those of CLINTON."

In a statement released to Politico, State Department deputy spokesman Mark Toner denied that State officials requested a "quid pro quo" from federal investigators.

"This allegation is inaccurate and does not align with the facts," he said.

"To be clear: the State Department did upgrade the document at the request of the FBI when we released it back in May 2015. Under Secretary Kennedy sought to understand the FBI's process for withholding certain information from public release. As has been reported, there have been discussions within the interagency on issues of classification. Classification is an art, not a science, and individuals with classification authority sometimes have different views."

However, another interviewee appeared to corroborate the initial report in an interview with the FBI in September 2015.

The unnamed official, who works for the FBI's International Operations Division, said he found a note on his desk in late May or early June that asked him to contact Kennedy. The official said he was surprised, because his colleagues had been trying to get in touch of Kennedy for months, without success.

>> Related: FBI: No charges recommended in Clinton email investigation, Clinton responds

"When (redacted) returned KENNEDY's call, KENNEDY asked (redacted's) assistance in changing a classification of FBI information contained in an e-mail," according to interview notes.

"KENNEDY told (redacted) that the FBI's classification of the e-mail in question caused problems for KENNEDY and KENNEDY wanted to classify the document as 'B9.' KENNEDY further stated that the 'B9' classification would allow him to archive the document in the basement of DoS never to be seen again. (Redacted) was not sure of what KENNEDY meant by a 'B9' classification."

The interviewee told investigators that the email was classified by the FBI's Counter-Terrorism Division and related to the 2012 attacks on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi.

He initially agreed to look into the email's classification "if KENNEDY would provide authority concerning the FBI's request to increase its personnel in Iraq." It was later determined that the email could not be declassified.

>> Related: Fact-checking Hillary Clinton: Did FBI director say Clinton was 'truthful' about emails?

House Speaker Paul Ryan pointed to the newly released documents as evidence of Clinton's "complete disregard for properly handling classified information."

"A senior State Department official's attempt to pressure the FBI to hide the extent of this mishandling bears all the signs of a cover-up," he said.

In a Tweet, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump called the allegation "unbelievable."

The documents released Monday comprise the fourth batch of documents released by the FBI in relation to its investigation into Clinton's private email server. In all, authorities have released more than 250 pages of documents related to the email probe.

>> Related: Donald Trump to Hillary Clinton: If I were president, 'you'd be in jail'

Clinton, the Democratic nominee for president, served as secretary of state from 2009 to 2013. Her use of a private email server has been a recurring campaign issue; critics point to her use of an unsecured server as evidence of her questionable judgment.

In July, FBI director James Comey said no charges should be filed against Clinton because, despite her "extremely careless" handling of potentially sensitive information, no "clear evidence" existed to show Clinton intended to break the law.

Trump has promised that, if elected, he will appoint a special prosecutor to investigate Clinton's emails.

Read More
VIEW COMMENTS

There are no comments yet. Be the first to post your thoughts. or Register.

  • A bill that would require insurance carriers to consider the use of FORTIFIED construction techniques when determining premiums is moving forward in the Oklahoma legislature. The standards are set by the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety. House Bill 1720 does not mandate lower premiums - but Insurance Commissioner John Doak is confident the increased use of the stronger building techniques will drive down the cost of insurance for homeowners. Basically, FORTIFIED construction involves strongly connecting the roof to the walls and the walls to the foundation, greatly increasing the structure’s resistance to high winds. The bottom line, proponents say, is that Oklahomans will suffer storm damage every year, no matter what. But, “there’s going to be less damage for those consumers that embrace this program,” Doak told KRMG Tuesday. He hopes someday to possibly mandate lower premiums, but starting with a voluntary program is the best way to encourage wider use of FORTIFIED construction, he said. It’s not only for new homes, he added. “You can retrofit an older home,” Doak said, and the process doesn’t take very long. Habitat for Humanity has committed to building dozens of homes in Oklahoma using the new techniques. While such a home won’t withstand an EF-5 tornado, the great majority of damage in Oklahoma comes from straight-line winds and smaller tornadoes in the EF-1 to EF-2 range. HB 1720 passed unanimously in the Oklahoma House, by a vote of 93-0, and now goes to the Senate. Here is a video demonstrating the advantages of FORTIFIED construction:
  • At the request of four Democrats in the Congress, the Government Accountability Office has agreed to formally review how much money the feds spend, and what security precautions are taken, when President Donald Trump takes a weekend away at his Mar-a-Lago retreat in Palm Beach, Florida. The request for a GAO review came from three Democratic Senators and one House member – the GAO says it will “review security and site-related travel expenses related to the President’s stays outside the White House at Mar-a-Lago. The lawmakers who made the request were Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM), Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), and Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD). On 2/16, @RepCummings @SenWarren @SenWhitehouse & I wrote @USGAO & asked they review Mar-a-Lago security procedures & taxpayer funded travel — Tom Udall (@SenatorTomUdall) March 28, 2017 This is not new territory for the GAO, which from time to time is asked by one party or the other to review the costs of travel. When the White House was under the control of Democrats, Republicans a few years ago were the ones asking about costs – as they had the GAO look at a February 15-18, 2013 trip made by President Barack Obama. In that review, the GAO estimated that an official speech in Illinois, followed by a golf weekend in Florida, cost about $3.6 million. This GAO report will look at more than just the cost of the weekend trips to Trump’s resort in Mar-a-Lago, as it will also review security matters there. (CBSMiami/AP) — A government watchdog will investigate the taxpayer-funded travel costs of President Donald Trump’s trips to Mar-a-lago. — Liz Quirantes (@lizquirantes) March 28, 2017 Democrats raised those concerns during a trip that Mr. Trump took with the Japanese Prime Minister, when the two men were seen with aides in a public dining area, speaking about a developing national security issue with regards to North Korea. One question from the four Democrats centers on whether those who are at the Trump club have gone through normal security and clearance procedures, including any foreign nationals who might be there. White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer has downplayed the costs of the Mar-a-Lago visits, saying that’s ‘part of being President.’ “That is a vast reach,” Spicer told one reporter, who cast the question of the cost of the Mar-a-Lago visits, versus proposed cuts in the federal budget. Before he became President, Mr. Trump often criticized his predecessor for taking weekend golf trips to Florida and other parts of the country. While our wonderful president was out playing golf all day, the TSA is falling apart, just like our government! Airports a total disaster! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 21, 2016 The GAO will now be in charge of determining how much Mr. Trump’s own weekend getaways are costing taxpayers.
  • J is not OK, as a name according to a Swiss court. The Zurich administrative court said in a ruling released Tuesday it had upheld a local registry's office decision to reject the letter as a given name in the best interests of the child, Switzerland's 20 Minuten news website reported. The court rejected the parents' argument they wanted to honor their daughter's great-grandparents Johanna and Josef with the initial as one of her middle names, saying they could have chosen the already-accepted Jo instead.  Though the parents wanted to pronounce the name 'Jay,' the court noted the letter is pronounced 'Yott' in German, creating confusion. The court also said people would be inclined to put a period after the J, though it wasn't an abbreviation.
  • A new study by the Mayo Clinic found that certain workouts can reverse the aging process. The study found that a high-intensity interval training workout, combined with resistance training, can turn back time. >> Read more trending news 'You're essentially slowing down that aging process, (which) I think is amazing, because we didn't have those things before,' said Dr. Vandana Bhide, of the Mayo Clinic. The study was conducted by researchers in Rochester, Minnesota, and targeted two age groups -- 18 to 30-year-olds and 65 to 85-year-olds. As we age, we lose muscle mass. Researchers found that a combined workout increases muscle mass, and on the cellular level, reverses some of the adverse effects of aging. 'For older people, it allows them to be more functional, to be able to do as much as they can at whatever age,” Bhide said. Researchers tracked data over 12 weeks. 'It's not overnight, but we think of it taking years,' Bhide said. Florida-based fitness franchise Orange Theory Fitness focuses on these types of workouts. 'It kind of just reaffirms what we already believe here,' head coach Justin Hoffman said. 'We've seen tremendous strength gain, even (at) 70 years plus, with just 3 to 4 days of interval training.” Bhide said older people who are interested in these workouts should check with their doctor before starting. And as with any exercise program, everybody is different and may not get the same results.
  • The American Geosciences Institute will host a free webinar, “State Responses to Induced Earthquakes,” on Friday 14 April at 1:00 PM CT. The surge in recent years of earthquakes associated with some oil and gas operations, especially the deep underground injection of wastewater, has spurred a range of actions and responses from geoscientists, regulators, and operators. This webinar will explore state-level activities in Oklahoma, Texas, and Ohio to monitor and reduce induced earthquakes. SEG is a co-sponsor of the webinar. The webinar will feature Jeremy Boak (Director of the Oklahoma Geological Survey), Michael Young (Associate Director for Environment at the Texas Bureau of Economic Geology), and Steven Dade (Geologist 2 at the Ohio Department of Natural Resources), focusing on several key topics: Improved monitoring networks for detecting small earthquakes Regulations and their effects Collaborations between government, industry, and other groups to reduce induced earthquakes Outreach and education to improve public awareness Attendees will have the chance to ask questions of the speakers in a live question and answer session during the webinar. For more information and to register for the webinar, visit http://bit.ly/induced-eq-webinar. This webinar is co-sponsored by the American Association of Petroleum Geologists, the American Energy Society, the American Geophysical Union, the American Institute of Professional Geologists, the Association of American State Geologists, the Association of Environmental & Engineering Geologists, the Environmental and Engineering Geophysical Society, the Environmental Defense Fund, the Society of Exploration Geophysicists, and the U.S. Geological Survey.