Speaker Paul Ryan orders House Oversight Chairman Jason Chaffetz not to launch an investigation into Hillary Clinton’s private email system. Ryan wants to leave the investigation to the FBI so as to avoid the appearance of a partisan witchhunt.
House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Jason Chaffetz has been quietly planning a probe into the federal government’s record keeping — an investigation he acknowledges could put Hillary Clinton in the cross hairs.
In an interview with POLITICO published Tuesday, Chaffetz said the probe wouldn’t focus on Clinton, but “when she creates her own private email system, she’s ensnarled herself.”
But on Wednesday evening, Speaker Paul Ryan and House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy summoned Chaffetz (R-Utah) to the Capitol to let him know that he is not permitted to launch an investigation that involves Clinton in any way.
On Thursday, Chaffetz said he had no comment.
Ryan and McCarthy have been clear from the beginning: They believe the FBI and Justice Department should handle the investigation into Clinton’s use of personal email for government business, and that congressional involvement could disrupt the criminal probe and give the appearance of a GOP witch hunt.
Ryan, however, had given Chaffetz a green light to proceed — with caution — investigating systematic problems within his committee’s broad jurisdiction, while making clear his preference that Chaffetz steer clear of Clinton personally.
Now, following the POLITICO story, GOP leadership says he may not even investigate systematic issues if they involve Clinton.