“There is no denying that foreign actors actually had access to the server,” Meadows told The Epoch Times at a conservative political conference in Australia on Aug. 10. “The question is, to what extent. And I think there are several members of Congress who believe that [it] was a lot more invasive than perhaps the original inspector general’s report.”
Meadows made the statement while responding to a question about a supplementary report that Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz sent to lawmakers. In testimony before Congress in 2018, Horowitz promised to update the House Judiciary and Oversight committees on what steps the FBI took to investigate a lead from the Intelligence Community Inspector General (ICIG).
The ICIG told the FBI that an anomaly in the metadata of Clinton’s email messages suggested that a foreign third-party received a copy of virtually every email that passed through the server.
Despite the alarming nature of the ICIG’s lead, it wasn’t included in the 568-page report by the inspector general on the handling of the Clinton email case. The report also doesn’t address what digital forensic efforts the FBI undertook to determine whether an unauthorized third party accessed Clinton’s server. Horowitz’s supplemental report was meant to rectify that gap. His findings on the matter left some lawmakers feeling that the Justice Department (DOJ) didn’t do enough to investigate the possibility the server was hacked.
“The inspector general did respond to our committee in terms of foreign infiltration into the Hilary Clinton server. Some members of Congress felt that the analysis done by the DOJ was less than robust and didn’t go far enough into the potential for some of the infiltration that whistleblowers had indicated to us had actually occurred.”
Peter Strzok, the FBI agent who led the Clinton email investigation, expressed intense bias against then-candidate Donald Trump and believed that Clinton should win the presidential election “100,000,000-0.” Horowitz concluded that Strzok’s bias cast a cloud over the investigation.
According to Meadows and Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas), Strzok was one of the four FBI officials who attended a meeting with two members of the ICIG’s office—investigator Frank Rucker and attorney Jeanette McMillian. During that meeting, Rucker informed the FBI about the metadata anomaly. Meadows and Gohmert have suggested that Strzok ignored the lead.
The FBI declined to comment. Charles McCullough, who served as the ICIG during the FBI’s Clinton email investigation, didn’t respond to a request for comment.
According to a transcript of the closed-door testimony by Strzok reviewed by The Epoch Times, Strzok told members of Congress in June 2018 that he didn’t remember a meeting with the ICIG during which a discussion about changes in the metadata occurred. Strzok added that he wasn’t aware of anything in the Clinton email investigation that his team didn’t pursue.
Several other FBI and DOJ witnesses questioned by Congress about the matter claimed to have no memory of it.
When then-FBI Director James Comey exonerated Clinton in 2016, he stated that while the FBI was unable to find direct evidence of an intrusion into Clinton’s server, sophisticated foreign adversaries wouldn’t have left discoverable traces on the server. The bureau determined that “hostile actors” gained access to the private email accounts of people Clinton regularly communicated with. As secretary of state, Clinton sent and received work-related emails on the territories of foreign adversaries, Comey said.