Politics

Report: Lynch Will Accept FBI Recommendations in Clinton Email Investigation

Loretta Lynch
Loretta Lynch / AP

Attorney General Loretta Lynch will announce Friday that she will accept the recommendations of the FBI and career prosecutors over whether to file charges against Hillary Clinton in the private email server case, the New York Times reports.

Lynch faced pressure after she set off a political uproar this week with a private meeting with former president Bill Clinton on her airplane. She insisted their chance encounter on the tarmac of the Phoenix airport was innocent, but both sides of the aisle decried the appearance of impropriety, given Clinton's spouse being under federal investigation.

A Department of Justice source said Lynch will make her announcement Friday in Colorado, The Times reports:

Republicans said the meeting, which took place at the Phoenix airport, had compromised the independence of the investigation as the F.B.I. was winding it down. Some called for Ms. Lynch to recuse herself, but she did not take herself off the case — one that could influence a presidential election.

Ms. Lynch plans to discuss the matter at a conference in Aspen, Colo., on Friday. The Justice Department declined to comment. The official who confirmed the discussion did so on the condition of anonymity because the internal decision-making process is normally kept confidential.

The F.B.I. is investigating whether Mrs. Clinton, her aides or anyone else broke the law by setting up a private email server for her to use as secretary of state. Internal investigators have concluded that the server was used to send classified information, and Republicans have seized on the matter to question Mrs. Clinton’s judgment.

For the Justice Department, the central question is whether the conduct met the legal standard for the crime of mishandling classified information.

Lynch has known the Clintons for decades. She has insisted there was no conflict of interest in her handling of the case, in spite of President Obama's endorsement of Hillary Clinton for president.