The private email scandal just got much worse for Hillary Clinton, politically.
At first glance, the news that the FBI has expanded their probe to a second tech company involved with Hillary’s email system may seem like mere “piling on,” but the details of the story indicate that this expansion may be what ultimately uncovers a fatal political wound for Hillary in connection with this story.
The basic gist of the story is that the FBI is now examining the servers of a company called Datto, Inc., a Connecticut based company that provided data backup services for the Platte River company (which was responsible for maintaining Hillary’s server). Most people are focusing on the fact that this means it is more likely that the FBI will obtain access to the email records that Hillary attempted to delete on the basis that they were “personal.” That is definitely true, and it’s certainly possible that this batch of emails will indeed contain material that is incriminating to Clinton.
However, I have always maintained that the one development in this story that could turn this email scandal from an annoyance into a campaign destroyer would be the revelation that Hillary’s email system was compromised by hackers. It’s one thing to say, in the abstract, that what Hillary did was irresponsible and reckless because it exposed sensitive information to potential attacks; it’s quite another to say that classified information was actually accessed by unauthorized parties; particularly foreign governments.
Reading between the lines of this particular story, it looks appallingly likely that this happened:
The cooperation of a second tech company raises new questions about whether the FBI is now obtaining any of the emails that Clinton says she and her attorneys deemed to be personal and deleted, as Republican critics have demanded to know if any of those emails were really work-related emails that should have been turned over to the State Department along with other federal records.
Datto’s cooperation also raises more questions about whether anyone at the company, where employees do not have security clearances, had access to classified information that was in Clinton’s server. The source familiar with the investigation said that like all major tech companies on the front lines, Datto has faced cyberattacks, another subject of great interest to the FBI in its probe of Clinton’s server.
These two pieces of information alone would be enough to doom any Republican candidate for President. With respect to Hillary, they merely raise the chances that this scandal will grow to the point that it will finally topple her. When and if the day finally comes that some hacker or a foreign government is able (and willing) to parade around a document that it actually obtained from Hillary’s email records, the damage will officially have been done.
Right now, Hillary’s team has to be basically holding their breath that this didn’t happen.