Republican Congressman from Utah Jason Chaffetz caused a shockwave in the media and in the 2016 presidential election Friday, when he tweeted that the FBI had “reopened” the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails.
FBI Dir just informed me, “The FBI has learned of the existence of emails that appear to be pertinent to the investigation.” Case reopened
— Jason Chaffetz (@jasoninthehouse) October 28, 2016
Across the board, major media jumped on this tweet, blasting out headlines using Chaffetz’s phrasing that the FBI was “reopening” its investigation. This was untrue for several reasons. Informing Congress about the discovery of three possibly related emails while investigating Anthony Weiner‘s communications in a totally unrelated case was a routine clerical matter. As experts were quick to point out, the FBI had not used the word “reopened” and had yet to assess whether there was anything to investigate at all. The emails were not sent to or from Hillary Clinton, and there was no possible way that they could result in new charges being filed against her.