Clinton blames Comey for defeat
HILLARY Clinton has blamed FBI director James Comey for her loss in the US presidential race, claiming that reopening the probe into her email use broke the momentum toward victory.
The former Democratic nominee told fundraisers and donors in a conference call that Mr Comey’s two letters to Congress on the probe had tilted crucial states towards Republican Donald Trump, US media reported.
“There are lots of reasons why an election like this is not successful,” Ms Clinton told her national finance committee, a person on the call told online magazine Quartz.
“But our analysis is that Jim Comey’s letter raising doubts that were groundless [and] baseless – and proven to be – stopped our momentum.”
On October 28 – less than two weeks before Election Day – Mr Comey dropped a bombshell by informing Congress the FBI was looking once more into Ms Clinton’s controversial email practices as secretary of state after new messages were uncovered.
His second letter, on November 6, just three days before the election, stated that the FBI’s review of the new emails had uncovered no wrongdoing, and that the bureau had not changed its July recommendation not to charge Ms Clinton.
While the first letter reopened old wounds and reminded voters of the controversy, the second letter, according to Ms Clinton, had the perverse effect of energising rival Donald Trump’s base, Quartz reported.
The letters came just as Ms Clinton was building momentum following strong performances at all three presidential debates, and after the release of a damaging recording of Mr Trump boasting about groping women.