Nigel Austin 

author of The Robin Gibson series

​Posted 6th July 2016

When Guilt is not enough

​​Unfathomably but perhaps predictably, following protracted and exhaustive investigations, the FBI has decided not to recommend criminal charges against Hillary Clinton for her use of her private email server while Secretary of State ....and to disappoint those hoping she would be forced to withdraw her candidacy. The decision is unfathomable because the case against Clinton is strong, as FBI Director James Comey himself explained in what has been described as a blistering review of her actions.

"Although we did not find clear evidence that Secretary Clinton or her colleagues intended to violate laws governing the handling of classified information, there is evidence that they were extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information," he said. Surely, if someone knowingly breaks the rules, despite warnings, that demonstrates ‘intent’? Maybe I’m used to working with a different dictionary and I seem to have mislaid my copy of the Lexicon of Expedience and Double-Speak (if I ever had one). I’m not predisposed to agree with Trump about anything but I think he’s right to maintain that the system is rigged.

In the UK, the merest whiff of impropriety has often been sufficient to see off the most prominent of politicians and none would have survived the sustained attacks on Clinton’s competence and integrity that this case has seen. But in the US, where brash and brazen regularly define the defence tactics of the accused and justice is something the rich and powerful seek but seldom receive, no such moral decency can be expected. And we must remember HRC is the anointed one; this is her time and no one is going to be allowed to ruin her chances of finally turning unbridled ambition into reality. That she has demonstrated throughout her arrogance and a systematic lack of cooperation in the face of a legal investigation can’t possibly indicate a flaw in her character or disdain for the rules. That she is used to getting what she wants and amassing a fortune in the process are testaments to her strength rather than venality and a worship of wealth.

Assuming she emerges from the Democratic Convention later this month with the nomination, her hubris will continue to dog her campaign. Her opponents and many decent people with a set of moral values not for sale will continue to question her fitness for office and the rectitude of the decision not to prosecute. Having another Clinton in the White House may be a stretch too far for the electorate come November and the Democratic party may well find that their blind allegiance to such a liability, in the face of logic and the odds, will give them a minimum of 4 years to regret their stupidity.