John Podesta, former campaign chairman for Hillary Clinton, said Monday that “forces within the FBI' may have been the reason Clinton lost the election.
Podesta, however, offered no proof of the claim when he spoke to John Heilemann in an interview that was hosted by NewCo, Politico reported.
“There are at least forces within the FBI that wanted her to lose,” Podesta said. “I’m not sure they really understood the alternative, but they wanted her to lose. I think that’s one possibility."
FBI Director Jim Comey came under fire from Democrats when, 11 days before the election, he announced that the agency was evaluating a batch of Clinton’s emails.
Clinton was investigated for using a private email server kept in her New York home to send and receive emails while she was secretary of state. Comey announced on July 5 that he will not recommend criminal charges in the case, but that he felt she had used poor judgement in setting up and using the private server.
Podesto said he felt Comey was pressured to make the statement in October, and that the campaign never recovered from it.
“He made a bad judgment, and I think virtually anybody who has opined on the topic…. have said it was a terrible mistake of judgment,” Podesta said. “And I think it did terrible damage to us. If you look at the polling at that period time, that’s when the race began to tighten in that week.”