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Former U.S. Attorney in Seattle calls on FBI director to clarify Clinton email probe

SEATTLE —  Fallout continues over the decision of FBI Director James Comey to make public a new investigation into the Hillary Clinton email controversy just days before the presidential election.

Comey has been blasted over the timing of the announcement, with some questioning whether his motives were political.

Around 100 former Department of Justice officials penned a letter calling on Comey to provide additional information about the emails to the public ahead of November 8.

“Many of us have worked with Director Comey; all of us respect him. But his unprecedented decision to publicly comment on evidence in what may be an ongoing inquiry just eleven days before a presidential election leaves us both astonished and perplexed,” the letter read, in part.

Those who signed the letter, including former Attorney General Eric Holder, expressed concern over whether Comey’s actions will have an undue influence on the outcome of the election.

"We cannot recall a prior instance where a senior Justice Department official – Republican or Democrat – has, on the eve of a major election, issued a public statement where the mere disclosure of information may impact the election’s outcome, yet the official acknowledges the information to be examined may not be significant or new.”

Michael McKay, a former U.S. attorney for the Western District of Washington, served under President George H. W. Bush. McKay is among those who signed his name to the letter.

McKay told “Q13 News This Morning” that while he believes Clinton would make a “horrible” president, she has a right to the same protections as everyone else.

“If you’re investigated by the federal government, they will not let that fact be known unless and until you should be charged – and that’s when it becomes public,” McKay said. “Because a lot of innocent people are investigated and those people should not have their reputation harmed simply because they’re being investigated. All of us are innocent until proven guilty, including Hillary Clinton.”

Another former U.S. attorney for the Western District of Washington, Jenny Durkan, also signed her name to the letter. Durkan served under President Obama until she retired in 2014.