Why things are about to get a lot worse for Hilary
FOR weeks she was able to sit back and watch as controversy after controversy washed over Donald Trump, but now Hillary Clinton is facing a fresh wave of potential scandals of her own. Worse, they threaten to climax just as the country votes in November.
The two sources of her problems are beginning to merge. One is the well-trodden matter of her use of a private email server while Secretary of State. The other is whether donors to the Clinton Foundation received preferential access to her while she was in that post.
Two bombs dropped on the Clinton campaign together on Monday. It emerged that the FBI has delivered to the State Department almost 15,000 emails not seen before and a judge ordered the department to accelerate their release to the public. Plus a conservative group called Judicial Watch released details of emails detailing how foundation donors sought her attention.
Mrs Clinton will continue to rely on Mr Trump to step on his own campaign. But she knows before election day she will be forced into some damage control.
The first of the new emails could be made public in October within weeks of the vote. Should any smoking gun emerge showing national security was seriously compromised by Mrs Clinton's reliance on a private server, the damage could be severe.
Questions have been swirling for weeks about whether she gave special favours in return for gifts to the charitable foundation her husband set up after leaving the presidency. Judicial Watch unveiled details that showed how that might have happened thanks to emails it had accessed through the courts sent to and from Huma Abedin, a close Clinton confidante and her deputy chief of staff during her four years at the State Department.
One email shows Doug Band, a senior figure at the foundation, pushing Ms Abedin for a meeting between Ms Clinton and Salman bin Hamad al-Khalifa, crown prince of Bahrain while he was in Washington DC in June 2009.
"Good friend of ours”, Mr Band said of him. His government had given $50,000 to the foundation and the prince had participated in one of its annual gatherings in New York, the Clinton Global Initiative.
There is nothing in the emails released on Monday that would appear to establish a direct link between a donor and any favours extended to them by the State Department.
Mr Trump is taking full advantage and demanded a special prosecutor look into her email affairs and the relationship between the State Department under her watch and the foundation.