tv Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer CNN November 6, 2016 2:00pm-3:01pm PST
good evening from washington. less than 48 hours from election day, i'm wolf blitzer. we want to welcome our view ier in the united states and around the world to a special edition of "the situation room." we start with breaking news on the fbi's surprising impact on this, the 2016 presidential electi election, here in the united states. it has now taken a very dramatic turn. with the fbi director james comey now saying the fbi has found nothing in those new e-mails that changes their original decision that there was no criminal activity on the part
of hillary clinton. this news comes as the candidates make a final push and a final plea to voters. take a look at this. you're looking at live pictures right now of a hillary clinton rally in cleveland. also a donald trump event that starts next hour in sterling heights, michigan. first, let's go to our justice correspondent, pamela brown. first of all, let me read a passage from the new letter from fbi director comey. quote, based on our review, we have not changed our conclusions that we expressed in july with respect to secretary clinton. pamela, this is shocking. the revelation, the timing, all of this happening two days before the election. tell us more about the letter and, specifically, about the timing of director co-my eor co conclusion. >> another curve ball from fbi director james comey. announcing today the review is complete of the additional e-mails. the fbi will not change its initial decision of no charges against hillary clinton. we're told from law enforcement sources the reason this was done
so quickly, in part, was because most of the new e-mails were duplicates. in other words, e-mails the fbi had already reviewed as part of its initial private server investigation. there were several personal e-mails, as well. there was a large volume, as director comey says in the letter to congress, thousands of e-mails the fbi had to go to. it is clear from talking to officials, the fbi was aware of how high the stakes were. we know that director comey's letter to congress about a week and a half ago really set off a political fire storm, especially among democrats. the fbi wanted to complete this review as quickly as possible. wolf, it is a surprise how quickly it was done. last week, my colleague, evan perez and i were hearing from fbi officials it wouldn't likely wrap up until after the election. of course, wolf, we're learning now from our sources that it didn't take as long as anticipated because most of the e-mails had already been reviewed and they were personal e-mails. of course, this raises the
question about director comey's initial action and why he sent that letter to congress without knowing the significance of these e-mails. we know the search warrant was issued after that letter was sent and then, of course, now we know the fbi has looked through the e-mails and determined there is nothing new to change its initial recommendation. no matter who is elected president come tuesday, it'll put director comey in an awkward spot, no matter if it is hillary clinton or donald trump, given all that has transpired recently especially, wolf. >> basically, over the past nine days, since the original letter was sent to the congress on october 28th, fbi agents, justice department officials, they worked around the clock to go through the hundreds of thousands of e-mails on anthony weiner's computer, to see if there was anything at all that could have incriminated hillary clinton. they came up with the same conclusion that comey recommended to the justice department, to congress back in july when he said she was
extremely careless in dealing with classified information. no reasonable prosecutor would recommend criminal charges. he's sticking to that original conclusion. >> that's right, wolf. i can tell you from talking to law enforcement officials, the fbi worked as quickly as it could, according to these people familiar with the matter. the bar was always high for this recommendation from july to be changed. in the new e-mails, there would have to be information about intent that secretary clinton at the time knowingly and willingly sent classified information. we know, wolf, from the prior investigation, that the fbi did uncover some classified information on the private server, but there was no recommendation of charges because the fbi director comey said there was no direct intent. in the newly discovered e-mails, we're learning they were from a laptop that was very old, we're told by sources. about a decade old. most of them, wolf, were
duplicates and personal. we know loretta lynch, the attorney general who disagreed with director comey's initial letter to congress about the findings was on the same page with the fbi about the findings in this case. and sending this letter to congress saying that the recommendation has not changed. one official told me tonight, wolf, everyone is on the same page in the fbi and the justice department, about how this has wrapped up. >> the political fallout will be significant. pamela brown, i know you're working your sources and we're getting information on the background, the story behind the story. i'm going to get back to you shortly. right now, we have more on the breaking news. the political impact of all of this. i want to bring in cnn's chief political analyst gloria borger and dana bash. ballots have already been cast early voting. this letter, how far does it go
in repairing the damage done to hillary clinton's campaign over the past nine days? >> i think it is a little bit late, wolf. and i think that donald trump is going to continue to talk about the e-mail issue. he'll continue to talk about the clinton foundation. republican national committee put out a statement where it mentioned the clinton foundation again. this argument against hillary clinton is not going to stop. i just got off the phone with a senior adviser to hillary clinton who said that they're not going to say anything else about this either. other than what they've been saying, which is that they're glad the issue is, quote, resolved, unquote. they want to go into the last 48 hours of this campaign with a positive message. they don't want to be talking about her e-mails or anybody else's e-mails. they're going to go to new hampshi hampshire. some of the surrogates will talk
about and it you can presume that republicans are going to say that the fbi is in cahoots with hillary clinton now. but i think that as for the clinton campaign, they're going to continue to try to make a positive message now for the last two days. >> we're standing by to speak with jason miller, the trump senior communications adviser. we'll get the trump campaign's official reaction to what has just unfolded. a major, major development. dana, republicans are already issuing some reaction. the rnc, the speaker of the house, to this announcement, this decision by the fbi director james comey, that his original conclusion back in july still stands after the nine days of reviewing all the e-mails on anthony weiner's computer. >> that's right. gloria mentioned the republican national committee's statement. we're hearing from other republicans. donald trump himself, although he didn't mention this. he kept the sort of story going in terms of hitting hillary
clinton on e-mails but also on the broader question of, as he says now, drain the swamp. from the republican perspective, they are saying that this doesn't change their overall message, that hillary clinton is an insider, that she is part of the problem and donald trump is not. he is obviously not a politician or hadn't been since he first ran for office a year and a half ago. so the question though is whether or not that is going to resonate given this news. i think the bad news for hillary clinton is probably yes. because at this point, the specific specifics might not matter as much as the noise. when i say noise, i mean people hear fbi, hillary clinton, e-mails. they've been hearing about it pretty intensely since a week ago friday.
it is never a good thing for a candidate, for the message and the subject to be about what she did or did not do. both sides will tell you that. the reality also is so many people, millions of people, have will ev already gone and voted. you can't put the toothpaste back in the tube. we'll see how this plays out and whether or not the fact that james comey did this with just, you know, 36 hours to spare, is going to make much of a difference in the minds of those who are reluctant to vote for somebody like hillary clinton because of the cloud that is over her. nevermind the specifics. >> i want both of you to stand by. gloria and dana, much more coming in. moments after the new fbi letter went public, we heard this from the clinton campaign. listen.
we have seen director comey's latest letter to the hill. we were glad to see that he has found, as we were confident he would, that he has confirmed the conclusions that he really reached in july. we're glad this matter is resolved. >> standing by. we'll be speaking live with jason miller, the trump senior communications manager. joining me now is the chairman of the black caucus, hillary clinton supporter. thank you, congressman, for joining us. >> good afternoon. >> what's your initial reaction to this new comey letter, just released today, saying the fbi's july conclusion stands? the conclusion that hillary clinton's use of a private e-mail server was careless, extremely carele lesless in the director's words but not criminal. he's standing by that after reviewing all the new e-mails discovered on anthony weiner's computer. your reaction?
>> wolf, i read director comey's letter a few minute ago. it is finally over. the distraction of the e-mails has distracted from the campaign but we are glad it is over. now we can get back to the central issues that faced this campaign. director comey could have done this weeks ago. rather than writing a better to congress and stirring up the presidential race, he could have taken the eight or nine days, reviewed the e-mails and made the pronouncements then. i was disappointed he stirred up the presidential election. the good news is this is now over. now the american people can concentrate on choosing the next president and commander in chief. >> does your confidence in the fbi director, has it been renewed? >> director comey has a good reputation and has been a law enforcement professional for many years. i'm still evaluating why he would send such a letter to congress. we'll put it aside for right now and concentrate on this election
and taking the american people in a positive direction. >> as you know, since the original letter came out at the end of october, a lot of ballots have been cast, about 40 million or so. maybe another 70 or 80 million will still vote between now and election day. does this new letter from comey, nine days after the original letter, does it really undo some of the damage that was done to the clinton campaign? >> i'm not sure the letter that comey sent to congress did any significant damage to the campaign. the american people saw it for what it was. right here in north carolina, we've had 2.8 million people to already cast their ballots here in our state. 42% of democrats have already voted compared to 32% for republicans. the voters of north carolina are engaged and involved in this election, as they are all across the country. we are poised to see one of the greatest turnouts america has ever seen. >> the reason i say it may have damaged the clinton campaign is because the polls in several
battleground states, as well as nationally, seem to have narrowed over these past few days. you've seen the polls, as well. i assume that the fbi letter may have had a negative impact on clinton campaign's but you're not confident of that? >> i'm not confident of that. may have had a modest effect on the polling but i think all presidential elections such as this narrow right at the end. we've seen that historically. there have been a few exceptions throughout the years. all presidential races are very close at the end. hillary clinton has a decided advantage now. the letter issue is no longer -- the e-mail issue is no longer a distraction. now we can get ready to turn out our base vote and to provide free public college education for our young people and to move this country forward and get all the division behind us. we're ready for tuesday. >> clinton campaign said they
always thought this would be the outcome. trump campaign chief, kellyanne conway, tweeted this. why did you, your candidate and colleagues attack comey and his credibility? respond to that. >> we knew this would be the outcome. this matter was closed back in july. the fact that director comey sent a letter to congress and stirred up the presidential race is a real confusing matter to me. that is behind us now. we're ready to move on. i talked to the campaign in brooklyn a few minutes ago. we're not giving a high-five on this. this is not what this is all about. should have never been a distraction in the beginning. we are moving forward. secretary clinton is continuing to travel the country. we're ready to face the american people on tuesday. i'm confident we will win this election. hillary clinton will be the next president of the united states. because people are excited about this campaign. >> congressman butterfield,
thanks for joining us. >> thank you. when we come back, what if the fbi's e-mail review influenced early voters, some 40 million americans already voted. has the damage been done to the clinton campaign? we'll talk about this, much more on the breaking news. our political experts are standing by. lots happening. we'll be right back. yeah. well, we gotta hand it thto fedex. glasses. they've helped make our e-commerce so easy, and now we're getting all kinds of new customers. i know. can you believe we're getting orders from canada, ireland... this one's going to new zealand. new zealand? psst. ah, false alarm. hey! you guys are gonna scare away the deer! idiots... providing global access for small business. fedex.
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we're following unexpected, major breaking news. another dramatic twist in the race for the white house less than two days before the election. the fbi director james comey has just told congress a review of newly discovered e-mails has turned up nothing new in connection with the investigation into hillary clinton's use of a private e-mail server while she was secretary of state. comey says he stands by his july decision that no criminal charges should be filed against hillary clinton and the case for all practical purposes right now is closed. this comes nine days after comey upended the white house race with his controversial revelation of the new e-mails before they were reviewed. it also gave new momentum to donald trump's campaign, which used the issue to clip away at hillary clinton's lead in the rolls. we're standing by at a trump rally. we want to hear what he has to say about the major new development. we're also going to be speaking momentarily with jason miller, the senior communications
director for the trump campaign. we'll get the reaction from the trump campaign, jason miller, joining us momentarily. let's bring in our panel. rebecca berg and david gregory, and mark preston. also with cnn political commentator, david. mark, this review, initial review nine day as ago seemed t have an impact in the polls. they tightened in battleground states as well as nationally. two days to go. 36 hours or whatever. what will be the impact of this final letter from comey saying case closed? >> couple things. one, i don't think we're expected to hear from hillary clinton on it. she duoesn't want to continue t talk about it. she'll let her surrogates do it. two things, there will be votes hillary clinton will never get back now that could be from republicans who were not necessarily enamored with donald trump, thinking of going to hillary clinton but saw the comey situation and said, i'll
cast an early ballot in a battleground state. interesting, three states to look at as we head to election day because of the news. new hampshire, michigan and new hampshire. they didn't allow early voting. the clinton campaign has hours to hammer home the fact she did nothing wrong, at least in the eyes of the fbi, when it comes to the e-mails. >> it is an extraordinary development. i don't remember a time when something like this has happened in the final few days of a campaign. the director of the fbi directly getting involved. >> it is extraordinary. the development today, i think, will confirm at least for a lot of democrats that maybe comey should not have sent the first letter in the first place. because there was nothing there. democrats, i think in the coming days, are going to drive home this message that he should have investigated the e-mails first, then updated congress, as was necessary. i think the development today makes it very difficult for the fbi and comey to defend the
decision they made initially. politically, from the perspective of hillary clinton, this is a week her campaign never gets back. a week when she wanted to be making her closing message, driving home the positive themes of her campaign. instead, democrats and hillary clinton were wrapped up, trying to defend themselves against this. so that's going to be seven critical days in the final stretch of the campaign. there is nothing they can do about the lost time. >> everybody stand by. jason miller is joining us now. the trump campaign senior communications adviser. jason, thanks very much for joining us. >> wolf, thank you for having me. >> so you know you've heard the letter. short letter from james comey. just released, sent to members of congress. republican chairman, democratic ranking members in the house of representatives and the senate. saying based on the fbi's review over the nine days, of all the e-mails on anthony weiner's computer, they haven't changed their initial conclusions back in july that, yes, hillary clinton acted extremely careless
in dealing with classified information, but no reasonable prosecutor would recommend criminal charges. i'd love to get the trump campaign's reaction. >> we don't think anything has changed here. we thought director comey and the fbi were wrong when they made the initial recommendation in july and think they're wrong now. unlike the democrats, who the heads spun so fast last week they caught whip lack, changing their positions, liking comey to disliking him to liking him again. let's look at the facts. there is still an active investigation into the clinton foundation. i think most americans have looked at this case and realized there is something corrupt. there is something shady with the entire clinton foundation and this outside server that was set up. going back to director comey's words of extremely careless and reckless. this was not done on the up and up, wolf. i think most americans get there is some serious ethical issues that will continue should secretary clinton, heaven
forbid, be elected president. these concerns and issues will run for a long time. this will be a cloud that will be hanging over her for quite a long time. there is only one option, and that is to vote for mr. trump, who will come in and bring a fresh, new slate and drain the swamp, as he talks about on the campaign trail. >> you're right that the democrats changed their tune from july when they were relieved, no criminal charges were recommended, to the end of october, when he said he'd take another look at the newly discovered e-mails on anthony weiner's computer. there was a very pro-comey comment back in july. anti-comey comment since then. but mr. trump also flipped on this. he was very critical in all the we weeks after the july conclusion. then he was welcoming to comey, expressing gratitude to him and the fbi agents. we saw a flip on both sides. you'll agree, right? >> no, not at all, wolf. mr. trump was very clear.
he said all along he thought the fbi got this wrong back in july. there's no way we could have all of these deleted e-mails. that we could have five different people taking the fifth in this investigation. clearly, we know all the e-mails weren't about yoga and wedding planning. then to find out -- i don't know how they went through 650,000 e-mails in one week. the fact we had sensitive information ending up on the laptop of anthony weiner is unconscionab unconscionable. the front page of the "washington post" showed clinton had her aide print off classified information. she was reckless, careless, disregard for top nation security information. it's not talking about the investigation that is clearly still going into the clinton foundation, where they used it as a pay to play operation to help them go from being worth nothing when they left the white house to being worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
>> is there also an fbi investigation underway now into the trump campaign -- or some officials from the trump campaign and their relationship with putin, with russia? >> no. wolf, no. that's been debunked by the "new york times," which is by no means a fan of mr. trump's. but, no, that's -- i think that is the best that the democrats and secretary clinton can do to try to take attention away from the fact they have this big, ethical cloud hanging over their campaign. as long as this investigation is still continuing into the clintons, and you can't act like it is finished wolf, because it is not, there is a serious issue. we saw the clinton inc. memo, how how the clintons could make $66 million in this whole pay to play operation. these are some real concerns, i think, the american people have heading into tuesday. >> does the trump campaign, specifically donald trump, have confidence in director comey? >> what we want to see is the fbi and the doj do their jobs.
we want to see justice being served, transparency and accountability of the process. i think what really is frustrating most americans, and this is part of the reason why mr. trump has been so successful on the campaign trail, is they view this as a rigged system. they see too much funny business. how do you go from all of this cloud and this pile of corruption to saying they're not going to recommend charges, even though they were extremely careless and reckless with activities, to saying 11 days out, we found these 650,000 e-mails from the spouse of a top aide, to going back to the fact that nothing is wrong, trying to put toothpaste back in the tube? it doesn't stack up. most americans look it this and shake their heads and say, you know what? we saw the drama with the clintons in the '90s. we don't need it again. let's bring in somebody new who will take us in a better direction. >> let me repeat the question. does the trump campaign, specifically mr. trump, have confidence in the fbi director james comey, that he is doing a
good job? >> it's not my claeys play to s director comey is doing a good job or not. it is clear the system is rigged and this investigation hasn't been handled well from the beginning. i think most americans would say, how do you get through 650,000 e-mails in a week? just because many of them were duplicates from before, i'm not sure it really stacks up that there is nothing that was concerning in them. going back to the fact that there is an active investigation into the clinton foundation, should be troubling. >> they say in the letter james comey wrote to the chairman and ranking members of all these congressional committees, they said the fbi investigator team has been working around the clock over the past nine days to process and review a large volume of e-mails from -- in connection with an unrelated criminal investigation, referring to the anthony weiner investigation. that he was sexting with a minor, a 15-year-old girl. they said that fbi officials had
all sorts of software to review the hundreds of thousands of e-mails. this is the bottom line conclusion. based on our review, we have not changed our conclusions that we expressed in july with respect to secretary clinton. so where does the trump campaign go from here, jason? are we going to hear directly from donald trump speak about this? he spoke an hour or so ago. didn't refer to it. in his next appearance, will we hear him say anything about this. >> i would expect mr. trump to bring this up on the campaign trail. i would expect mr. trump to bring up the fact there is an active, ongoing investigation into the clinton foundation. and the fact we have this rigged system. this has stunk from the beginning. there should have been charges brought against secretary clinton. one thing i'd ask is if this were to happen to anybody else, if there were a spouse of a state department staffer or employee who shared this confidential information or
sensitive information with other people, they'd be run out of town in a minute. we don't understand how secretary clinton can get away with this. i would say most people would probably agree and think the same thing. >> the fbi director and his team of fbi agents concluded, yes, she was extremely careless in dealing with sensitive, classified information, but he says that no reasonable prosecutor would go ahead and recommend criminal charges. he is sticking by that in this letter he just sent to the u.s. congress. jason miller -- >> they haven't cleared the other investigation. there is still an ongoing investigation into the clinton foundation. again, this isn't something that is going to get wrapped up any time soon. i really think the people do need to keep that in mind as they head into the voting booth on tuesday. this cloud will hang over the clintons for a long time. >> i just suspect we just heard some thoughts that donald trump will publicly relay when he goes public in his next address. jason, thanks very much. >> thank you, wolf.
>> let's bring back our panel and get some reaction. david gregory, what do you think about the trump campaign's reaction to this comey letter? >> i wonder how the trump campaign feels about chris christie, who is running their transition, whose aides were convicted in the bridgegate scandal, and whether he still has credibility in the role. mike pence said they stand by him. why? because christie has not been charged with any crime, which is similar to what the fbi director concluded about hillary clinton. jason miller is making a political argument. he is making an ethical argument against hillary clinton. many can and should make a determination on hillary clinton based on what we know thus far. here are the facts. comey, as head of the fbi, is not a person. it is an institution. but comey made this about him. going back to july, he had a revolt within the fbi. agents who hate the clintons, felt they should be charged with a crime, and he felt the need to
publicly justify why he didn't feel there should be charges to quell the result inside. everybody criticized him. he put his thumb on the scale nine days ago. could have investigated this and figured it out without impacting the election yet chose not to. that is the part that is unprecedented. if you are a republican or democrat, you have to look past this year's politics. you don't want an fbi director impacting an election. the rule of law is more important than this particular electi election. it seems to me, what jason miller is saying, they're not too concerned about that. that's a real problem. the fbi director allowed himself to be inserted into this. i covered the bush white house. i remember when a senior adviser was very close to being indicted. he was not charged with any crime but they were very anxious and critical of the media and the special prosecutor for so much scrutiny about the investigation when it didn't result in criminal charges. that is our american system. >> david, you've been watching this very, very closely.
as far as the fbi director is concerned, the clinton e-mail private server investigation, case closed. >> yeah, case closed. i think david makes a good point about going back to july when the -- when director comey initially said case closed. making the unprecedented speech, explaining why, for the reasons you said. i do think though once we got to where we are now, nine days ago, it could be argued either way that it would have been putting husband thumb on the scale again to not send the letter he sent nine days ago, just as it is being argued by democrats, and i think they have an argument, that he put his thumb on the scale by sending the letter to congress. >> you know, wolf, it is worth noting that once he came out last week and said this -- >> the fbi director. >> comey came out and said it. he had to come out today and say what the conclusion of what the investigation was, right? whether republicans are happy about it or democrats are unhappy about it, we're seeing quite a bit of reaction now.
comey is taking incoming from both sides now. he is caught in a cross fire and is going to have a difficult time, i think, after this election. whoever is elected president, in a new administration. the fact of the matter is he needed to come out and say what his investigators found. >> but there was no reason for him to come out in july and say no prosecutor would have filed charges. >> it's worth being consistent about it. this is not a pro or anti-hillary. he went beyond the scope. if you don't charge, you don't talk. >> right. >> that is what law enforcement does. it is what the legal community does. that is the standard. he had no reason to lean so far forward and say nobody would have charged her. he was trying to justify his decision to republicans who are critical and agents who are critical. once you start, you can't stop. >> right. >> he should have stayed quiet. if there were new embellishment -- e-mails, investigate that. >> what he promised members of congress after his initial conclusion, no criminal charges
should be filed, he said if something were to change in our investigation, i would report back to you. that's why he did nine days ago, report back and say, you know what, there is something that developed. we're taking a look at it. i'll get back to you. they worked over the nine days around the clock. who who knows how many fbi agents and justice department officials. who knows how much cold fro s h created to go through the thousands of e-mails on anthony weiner's computer. once he came up with the conclusion today, he had to inform congress. >> absolutely. as we've been saying, because he sent the letter roughly one week ago, giving them the first update, of course if they concluded their investigation or their e-mails prior to the election, they'd need to give another update. what democrats are arguing is even if he did pledge to keep congress updated, maybe it would have been prudent to wait until he knew whether anything was in the new batch of e-mails. the fbi could have pursued the
warrant behind the scenes to look into the e-mails. it's done is that correctly. they could have discovered whether there is anything in the new batch of e-mails. we see there was not. >> stay with us. we have a lot more coming up, including mike pence, the republican vice presidential running mate speaking right now. we'll see if he says anything on this major new development in the clinton e-mail affair. donald trump also has been using this e-mail review as an attack line since the news broke nine days ago. he's getting ready to speak in sterling heights, michigan. we'll see if he comments directly on the breaking news.
we're following the breaking news. the fbi director james comey has now confirmed the fbi found nothing in the new clinton e-mails that they've been combing through over the past nine days. republican vice presidential candidate mike pence, he is in hickory, north carolina, right now. he's just responded to the breaking news. listen to this. >> so while she was secretary of state of the united states, in charge of all the foreign policy of our country, she had a private server over here. excuse me, i skipped over it. a personal family foundation that -- thank you -- took millions of dollars from foreign governments. in between those two things, she had that private server. apparently, she had a private
server to kind of keep out of our reach whatever was going on when she was secretary of state and had a private foundation. and when it was discovered by the media that she had the private server, she used high technology and hammers to try and get rid of all of it. i mean, you know, the fbi last summer concluded that hillary clinton having classified documents on the private server was extremely careless. i guess today, i don't know if you heard, today they announced they had not changed that conclusi conclusion. well, i'll let you know, you know, mishandling classified information is a crime. and hillary clinton, let's remember what we know. hillary clinton said that she never sent or received any
classified information. the director of the fbi told the congress, classified information was sent. hillary clinton said there was nothing marked classified on her e-mails, sent or received. the fbi director told the congress that's not true. >> mike pence speaking in hickory, north carolina, moments ago, reacting to the fbi director's letter to congress. saying case close as far as the hillary e-mail server is concerned. the reaction from the trump campaign is coming in. we heard from jason miller and mike pence. soon, we'll be hearing from donald trump. >> if you want to make the case that she's unethical, untrustworthy, she did something, she was wrong, more power to you. a lot of people will agree with you and can go to the polls and vote against hillary clinton. what mike pence just said is dangerous. it is just like trump saying i will not accept the results of the election.
the fbi director has recommended no charges. we live in a society that's governed by the rule of law and by an independent fbi director who has a ten-year term. and an attorney general. for him to say that this is all rigged and you can't believe that, and he is going to pronounce, as a guy who is a former congressman and a governor, he knows what is legal and not legal. that is not just irresponsible, it is dangerous for our country. we've got to get beyond republican and democrat here. they will rue the day they are in a similar situation and you have somebody playing with the role of the fbi director or the attorney general. that's what they're doing there. vote against hillary clinton on the server, mine. bad judgment, mine. don't throw out american rule of law because the fbi director made that conclusion. it is dangerous. >> the reaction from the clinton campaign, rebecca, has been relatively muted. they've said, yes, they welcome the conclusion. they don't really want to talk that much about it. they're saying already that we're not going to hear much from hillary clinton director. >> no. that's not a huge surprise, at
least not to me, wolf. they did not want to be talking about this during the past week. they wanted to focus on the closing argument, close with a positive message. hillary clinton's case for why she should be president. not defending her and defending the state department over this issue. it was really a detour that none of them wanted. so they are trying to forge ahead during these last two days of the election. trying to refocus the campaign on what they wanted to be focused on for the past week in the first place. frankly, it's better for them. we've seen this reflected in the po polling. as long as this is out of the news and people are talking about this as little as possible, that tends to help hillary clinton in the polling. then we can return to talking about some of donald trump's setbacks and some of the flaws he has had throughout this campaign. >> historians, mark, will review this matter, depending on what happens tuesday. >> they'll say, wow. what a crazy election. >> yeah. >> i think back to david's point right now. i think it is incredibly dangerous to be politicizing the
federal bureau of investigation. both political parties. not just republicans but we saw hillary clinton supporters coming out and saying comey was doing it for political reasons. everything we know about comey is he is not necessarily political. we may be a republican but his tenure at the fbi hasn't been one of police -- he made an err. but it is dangerous. >> he is a former deputy attorney general, now the fbi director. until now, he's had a pretty good reputation. >> right. you've seen the politicization. democrats have been a little more critical. today, republicans are coming back and being critical. i agree with david though, that what governor pence said is dangerous for the reasons you stated. it is not just saying that, as a matter of politics, we want to focus on, as jason miller did, the ongoing investigation about
the clinton foundation. it is saying they don't accept the results of an investigation by the fbi. >> quickly, interesting challenge. if hillary clinton becomes president, there will be a temptation among those around her to go after comey, maybe seek to fire him, a political disaster. if she is president, does he call him in and publicly say, you know what, i disagree with how you handled the investigation, obama disagreed, but you are my guy, america's fbi director and i'll embrace you. if she tries to take action against him, the revolt within the bureau will be worse. >> we're getting a lot of reaction coming into the "situation room." democrats and republicans from both campaigns. we'll resume our special coverage right after this.
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we're standing by to hear directly from donald trump. he's about to hold a rally in michigan. we'll have special coverage of that. so far, no reaction from trump to the breaking news about the letter that fbi director sent congress, right? >> reporter: that's right. at his rally in minnesota donald trump didn't directly address it. his plane touching down and we heard nothing. scheduled in the next hour or so. the question is will he address it here. interestingly, kelly ann conway has not stayed silent.
she's taken to twitter twice. the establishment of that private e-mail server from hillary clinton was extremely careless in the words of james comey. that was the message that donald trump zeroed in on. >> hillary clinton will be under investigation for a long, long time for her many crimes against our nation, our people, our democracy. you have to understand, it's a rigged system and she's
protected. >> reporter: we're already hearing those chants of lock her up in michigan even though donald trump isn't here yet. some of the people not aware of those latest revelations, james comey second letter sayi ining e-mail review didn't reveal anything. the home of so-called reagan democrats, it could be crucial to him if he wants to take this state on tuesday. >> that crowd looks pretty excited right now. i assume it's a very large crowd. >> reporter: extremely large crowd. these people have been lined up to get in here since 1:00. they opened the door around 2:30. a very excited crowd. they have been chanting over and
over again, lock her up. the news just starting to trickle out here. they were inside this venue when word came out that the e-mail review had not uncovered anything. wolf. >> all right. we're standing by to hear from donald trump. we have some live pictures right now from hickory, north carolina. mike pence is holding rally. one of the key battleground states. right now it's a close race in our latest cnn poll of polls in north carolina. let's go our national correspondent in charlotte, north carolina.
what kind of enthusiasm are we seeing where you are? >> reporter: there are many people in north carolina who are not enthusiastic about the selection but not these people. they are getting ready to see jon bon jovi. they learned about the letter while they have been standing in line. there's a lot of very happy people. what did you think about the letter? >> i thought it was exactly the right timing. the investigation shouldn't have been re-opened in the first place. i was thrilled that it happened today. >> do you think it will make a difference? >> i think it will make a difference. it's really close to the election but i think it will
make a difference. how old are you? what's your first name? >> m rachel. i'm 20. >> this is your first presidential election? >> it is. >> what did you think? >> it's awesome. it's perfect timing. i agree as well. i haven't voted yet because i'm waiting for the full effect on election day. sdo r. >> do you think your friends might switch? >> i hope so. it's really down low. >> what's the down low? >> most of them are trump supporters. i don't talk about it. >> we have seen this all throughout the election for weeks and months there's a lot of antagonism for people who used to be friends who support trump and clinton. that's what happens in american
politics. there were still 50 people in line. back to you. >> has bon jovi performed or are they waiting for him to start? >> reporter: he performs an hour from now. >> thanks very much. gary tuckman joining us. it's all been leading up to this. election day in america. we'll have every day, every result. stay with cnn until the last vote is cast. all day coverage this tuesday. the next hour of our special situation room starts right now. good evening. i'm wolf blitzer in washington.
it's 6:00 p.m. in the nation's capitol. we're following breaking news in the race for president of the united states. the fbi director james comey announcing the latest review of hillary clinton's e-mail issue is that review is now complete. in a letter to congress, he said he's not changed his conclusion from july that there was no evidence of criminal activity in those documents. certainly, a sigh of relief for the clinton campaign. clinton, herself, did not respond to the news today at her rally in cleveland. telling cnn that this outcome is what the campaign expected. >> we have seen director comey's latest letter to the hill. we're dplad to see that as we were -- he's competent and that he has confirmed the conclusions that he reached in july. we're glad this matter is