Former Attorney General Michael Mukasey called the Hillary Clinton email scandal “troubling” and assessed the various laws that may have been broken by her conduct during an appearance on Morning Joe Thursday.
Co-host Mika Brzezinski asked Mukasey, who served under President George W. Bush, the implications of what granting immunity to Clinton aide Bryan Pagliano, who set up the server, meant and whether this was really “much ado about nothing.”
“Given what else there is, not likely,” he said. “Understand there are 16, 17, 1,800 classified emails on a nonclassified server. Somebody put them on there, and they didn’t all start off that way. The notion that somehow they weren’t marked when they were put on the server is a half-truth, and it’s one that is peculiarly designed to irritate anybody who knows the other half.”
Brzezinski asked what laws that could be broken here, and Mukasey said there were several, such as putting classified information in a non-classified setting.
“There’s one that says you can’t expose national secrets through gross negligence. Then there’s one that says you can’t destroy government information,” he said. “Then there’s one that you can’t obstruct justice.”
Liberal columnist Mike Barnicle wondered if over-classification was an issue, but Mukasey reminded him that 22 of Clinton’s emails were deemed “top-secret.”
Fellow co-host Willie Geist wondered what Mukasey found most disturbing about the saga.
“What troubles me most is the way the stuff got from what’s called the SIPR-net, the secret network within the government, and that network doesn’t talk to any other network,” Mukasey said. “So what has to have happened is somebody took it off there, and either transcribed it or summarized it, and then put it on her server. That’s very troubling.”
Brzezinski, at one point, noted Mukasey was smiling when she relayed the Clinton campaign’s spin that they “wanted” Pagliano to talk to authorities and for the investigation to move along.
“I was smiling, because what else would they say?” Mukasey asked. “What else would they say? ‘Well, we’re really worried about this.’ Of course, they’re going to say we want him to talk, we want all this stuff disclosed. It’s classified. It can’t be disclosed.”