It’s just been discovered that an attorney in the Justice Department who helped edit press statements about the tarmac meeting between Bill Clinton and Loretta Lynch is now working for Democrats in the Senate Judiciary Committee, which is currently investigating Lynch over concerns she may have tried to influence the FBI’s investigation into Hillary Clinton.
The Washington Free Beacon first reported the connection on Wednesday, after hundreds of pages of emails about the infamous “tarmac” meeting were released by two conservative watchdog groups who had filed Freedom of Information Act requests for documents about the meeting from the Justice Department.
Paige Herwig was a counselor to then-Attorney General Lynch in 2016 when the airplane meeting between Clinton and Lynch took place. According to her LinkedIn profile and other sources, she now serves as the deputy general counsel for the minority in the Senate Judiciary.
Now, it turns out that Herwig is one of the several lawyers who will have access to and knowledge of how the Senate Judiciary’s investigation of Lynch is proceeding, with many of those other attorneys being Republicans who serve Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley and the other GOP members of the committee.
The Senate Judiciary Committee is investigating Lynch’s role in the Clinton email investigation because of recent testimony from former FBI Director James Comey who said Lynch asked him to use the word “matter” when referring to the investigation.
“That language tracked the way that the campaign was talking about the FBI’s work, and that’s concerning,” Comey said under questioning on June 8. “I don’t know whether it was intentional or not, but it gave the impression that the attorney general was looking to align the way we talked about our work with the way a political campaign was describing the same activity, which was inaccurate. We had a criminal investigation open, and so that gave me a queasy feeling.”
Many of the tarmac emails in which Herwig was involved were heavily redacted by the Justice Department before they were turned over.
President Trump reacted to this news on Tuesday, tweeting, “E-mails show that the AmazonWashingtonPost and the FailingNewYorkTimes were reluctant to cover the Clinton/Lynch secret meeting in plane.”
E-mails show that the AmazonWashingtonPost and the FailingNewYorkTimes were reluctant to cover the Clinton/Lynch secret meeting in plane.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 8, 2017
Trump was referring to a batch of emails released by the American Center for Law and Justice which showed an initial reluctance by reporters from the Washington Post and The New York Times to cover the meeting between Bill Clinton and Lynch.
Other emails confirmed that Lynch had used an email alias to conduct much of her government business while attorney general, a practice that isn’t illegal but can sometimes present ethical issues with regards to FOIA and legal discovery.
Judicial Watch and the American Center for Law and Justice investigated all 413 pages of documents provided to them by the Department of Justice (DOJ) under the Freedom of Information Act. What they found is that former Attorney General Loretta Lynch used the alias “Elizabeth Carlisle” for official emails.
Elizabeth Carlisle is Lynch’s maternal grandmother’s name.
While investigating the documents, Judicial Watch and the American Center for Law and Justice found numerous emails sent by an Elizabeth Carlisle, all of which reportedly had references to the attorney general.
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