Gowdy: Clinton should be prosecuted

U.S. Rep. Trey Gowdy said he once again disagrees with FBI director James Comey’s decision not to prosecute Hillary Clinton over her handling of classified emails.

Comey on Sunday sent a letter to Congress saying the agency hadn’t changed its conclusions regarding its investigation into Secretary Clinton’s private email server. The letter was a follow up to a letter Comey sent on Oct. 28 the FBI had found additional emails during an unrelated investigation.

“I disagreed with director Comey in July and I disagree with him today,” Gowdy said in a statement released Sunday evening.

“There is sufficient evidence, both direct and circumstantial, upon which a jury could conclude an intent to violate the law. This evidence includes concealment of evidence, destruction of evidence and false exculpatory statements – all of which fall under the general heading of consciousness of guilt.”

Gowdy, who represents South Carolina’s 4th congressional district, serves on the House judiciary, ethics, oversight and reform committees, and chaired the select committee on Benghazi. He is running for a fourth term in Congress.

Gowdy’s main opponent Tuesday, Democrat Chris Fedalei, said he agreed with Comey’s decision to lay the Clinton email controversy to rest.

“It confirms what we already knew, that there was nothing,” Fedalei said. “It was a non-issue. It only served to distract the public from the real issues that affect people.”

In July, Comey announced he would not file charges against the former secretary of state and Democratic presidential nominee over her and her aides’ handling of classified information sent in personal emails.

Gowdy agreed with the FBI conclusion that Clinton and her top aides were “extremely careless” in their handling of classified information. But he criticized what he called a two-tier justice system and questioned Comey on his interpretation that a lack of specific criminal intent was the primary reason not to prosecute Clinton.

On Sunday, Comey announced the new investigation reached the same conclusion as the original probe.

“It would appear the investigation is back to the status quo ante, which means Director Comey believes Secretary Clinton was indeed extremely careless in her handling of classified material, yet there is insufficient evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt to prove Secretary Clinton had specific intent to violate a statute which specifically provides for the lower statute which specifically provides for the lower scienter standard of gross negligence,” Gowdy said in his statement.