Buried deep in a Freedom of Information Act document release last week to a conservative group were a series of emails that pertained to how the Justice Department handled questions from reporters about a 2016 airport tarmac meeting between former President Bill Clinton and then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch - the emails included a recipient named, "Elizabeth Carlisle," which reports now indicate was the email alias for President Obama's Attorney General.
"The ACLJ has unmasked former Obama Attorney General Loretta Lynch's alias email account," the American Center for Law and Justice announced on its website, showing off details of how the Justice Department crafted a "Talking points/statement" - though those internal deliberations were redacted (blacked out).
Todd spoke to Judge Ken Starr, a former U.S. solicitor general and federal judge who served as independent counsel in the Whitewater and Monica Lewinsky investigations.
Todd Starnes: I'm anxious to hear your opinion about about these, emails many of which were redacted regarding the meeting between Loretta Lynch and former President Clinton. What does that tell you?
Ken Starr: It tells us that there is a lot to be explored. I was very distressed, loving the Justice Department as I do, I served two tours of duty there and we want the Justice Department to do the right thing and to do it in the right way. We do not want in this country a politicized Justice Department. This is not Venezuela; this is the United States of America. We've got to keep the Justice Department as pure as humanly possible. This was a colossally bad judgment blunder on the part of the Attorney General of the United States. She never should have agreed to, I mean he is the former president but let's face it, there was a very important investigation underway and for that meeting, and to know that it was forty five minutes long on the tarmac at a minimum creates a huge issue of the independence and the integrity of the Justice Department. We need to know everything.
TS: Do you think that they were talking about more than just grandchildren and golf scores?
KS: It doesn't take forty five minutes to tell someone, especially the Attorney General of the United States, who's busy and who's on a tarmac. She's either ready to go to a meeting or she's ready to go in to resume her official duties. I just think forty five minutes suggests that, just the suggestion, we don't know, we need to know, that it was much more than a courtesy call and totally and just social. The appearance is horrible.
TS: Why is it that the FBI is so interested in Paul Manafort that they actually just showed up unannounced at his doorstep? What do you think is going on there?
KS: Well we don't know, we can only speculate. But I will tell you this. When the decision is made to go to a judge, a magistrate judge, supported by an affidavit saying this is why we need to go into Mr. Manafort's residence and we need to do it quickly, efficiently and when he's not expecting it, that tells me that there is information. We don't know the the full extent of it, but there is information that is obviously very worrisome to justify going into a home.
TS: Is it possible that what happened on that tarmac could in fact be the bigger story?
KS: It could very well be. We need to get to the bottom of that because if there was, if, it's a big if, but if there was an effort by the former President of the United States to impede an investigation or to narrow the investigation, then that is extremely serious indeed.
Listen to the full interview below: