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November 12, 2012

Claim: FBI Was Just Following The Rules By Not Informing Obama

I don't believe they didn't inform Obama. This seems to me, then, to be an explanation of how such a nondisclosure to the president would be borderline plausible.

But I still find it implausible.

The FBI withheld its findings about Gen. David Petreaus' affair from the White House and congressional leaders because the agency considered them the result of a criminal investigation that never reached the threshold of an intelligence probe, law enforcement sources said today.

The sources said agents followed department guidelines that generally bar sharing information about developing criminal investigations. The FBI is also aware of its history under former director J. Edgar Hoover of playing politics and digging into the lives of public figures. As one official said, the rules are designed to protect people (both private and elected officials) when negative information about them arises in the course of a criminal investigation that is not a crime.

The FBI's focus was on whether laws were broken, in this case whether federal cyber-harassment statutes were violated. The sources emphasized that Petraeus himself was never the focus of the investigation, nor did it turn up evidence he broke any law.

So no one ever told the president because the rules, allegedly, said that people couldn't share the information.

Meanwhile, everyone is leaking all over the place on this story, and to reporters, not the president. So we're to believe that "key sources" don't mind a little bit of leaking to reporters, but they observed their obligation to keep criminal probes strictly secret when it came to letting the President know?


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posted by Ace at 06:49 PM

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