Networks Ignore LAT, WashPost Stories Providing New Information on Hillary’s E-Mail Scandal

On Monday night, the “big three” networks of ABC, CBS, and NBC found it pertinent to keep their viewers in the dark of stories from the Los Angeles Times and Washington Post that each provided new information on the massive scale of the FBI’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s e-mail server scandal as she continues her presidential campaign.

The Fox News Channel (FNC) evening newscast Special Report with Bret Baier chose to take the high road as chief White House correspondent Ed Henry incorporated these articles into the conclusion of his segment on the Democratic presidential race. 

Henry mentioned the Los Angeles Times piece in context of Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) responding to a speech Clinton gave late Monday afternoon blasting his handling of the Supreme Court vacancy:

Now, in this speech that just wrapped up, Clinton ripped the Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley for blocking the President’s Supreme Court nomination. Grassley, fired back that given this report in the Los Angeles Times that Clinton may soon face an interview with the FBI, Grassley said she should focus on changing the tone of her campaign.

As for the other article, host Bret Baier asked Henry for more details and he cited the Washington paper as having reported that Clinton’s server “was operating without basic encryption and that State Department officials were initially concerned that Clinton wanted to use an unsecure Blackberry inside a very secure area of the State Department.”

Before tossing back to Baier, Henry brought up what’s arguably the most significant piece of information from The Post:

The Post also suggesting that up to 147 FBI agents are working on this case. Others reports are suggesting that number is overblown. The bottom line is, it appears this long investigation may be coming to a head at a very critical time in this campaign.

In the Los Angeles Times article, reporter Del Quentin Wilber revealed that the FBI has been scheduling interviews with Clinton confidants that had a hand in and/or knowledge of Clinton’s private e-mail server while secretary of state. 

Wilber explained that the interviews mark an escalation of the FBI’s review of Clinton and “will continue to dog Clinton’s presidential campaign through most, if not all, of the remaining presidential primaries.”

While “[n]o dates have been set,” Wilber added that the inquiries “will play a significant role in helping them better understand whether Clinton or her aides knowingly or negligently discussed classified government secrets over a non-secure email system when she served as secretary of State.”

Turning to The Washington Post, the front-page story by correspondent Robert O’Harrow detailed how Clinton found it “frustrating” that she wasn’t allowed to take her unsecured Blackberry with her to send/receive e-mails whenever she was in “her seventh-floor suite of offices, a secure space known as Mahogany Row.”

Here’s more from O’Harrow on the number of FBI agents now working the case:

The FBI is now trying to determine whether a crime was committed in the handling of that classified material. It is also examining whether the server was hacked.

One hundred forty-seven FBI agents have been deployed to run down leads, according to a lawmaker briefed by FBI Director James B. Comey. The FBI has accelerated the investigation because officials want to avoid the possibility of announcing any action too close to the election.

The Washington Post reviewed hundreds of documents and interviewed more than a dozen knowledgeable government officials to understand the decisions and the implications of Clinton’s actions. The resulting scandal revolves around questions about classified information, the preservation of government records and the security of her email communication.

The relevant portion of the transcript from FNC’s Special Report with Bret Baier on March 28 can be found below.

FNC’s Special Report with Bret Baier
March 28, 2016
6:23 p.m. Eastern

ED HENRY: Now, in this speech that just wrapped up, Clinton ripped the Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley for blocking the President’s Supreme Court nomination. Grassley, fired back that given this report in the Los Angeles Times that Clinton may soon face an interview with the FBI, Grassley said she should focus on changing the tone of her campaign. Bret?

BRET BAIER: And, Ed, some new revelations today on Clinton’s e-mail scandal and the investigation. What can you tell us?

HENRY: Yeah, well, The Washington Post reporting that her e-mail system was operating without basic encryption and that State Department officials were initially concerned that Clinton wanted to use an unsecure Blackberry inside a very secure area of the State Department. The Post also suggesting that up to 147 FBI agents are working on this case. Others reports are suggesting that number is overblown. The bottom line is, it appears this long investigation may be coming to a head at a very critical time in this campaign. Bret?

BAIER: Ed Henry live in Madison. Ed, thanks.

Curtis Houck
Curtis Houck
Curtis Houck is the Managing Editor of NewsBusters for the Media Research Center