Hillary Clinton blamed her defeat on FBI Director James Comey, telling top campaign contributors the October letter he wrote to Congress about a probe of her emails halted her momentum and that the second letter recommending no criminal charges galvanized Republicans days before the election.
In a conference call with supporters on Saturday, Clinton said she was “heartbroken” by the defeat to Republican Donald Trump and deeply concerned about his campaign promises, according to one person on the call.
“I am deeply saddened we’re going to have to face this,” she told the donors, according to the participant on the call. “We have to stand together for the country.”
The participant said she pointed to outgoing Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid’s letter as a call to action urging the donors to stay involved in Democratic politics. In the letter, Reid called Trump a “sexual predator who lost the popular vote and fueled his campaign with bigotry and hate.”
The conference call was among her first comments since a Wednesday concession speech following her stunning loss to Trump. It echoes a memo her staff leaked about the loss that also cites Comey’s role as the deciding factor.
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