Posts Tagged ‘Democratic National Committee’

Hillary Clinton Needs to Move On

February 12, 2018

Why is one of the most qualified leaders in the world continuing to let Trump define her, when she could be changing the subject?

 By JOANNA WEISS

February 11, 2018

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It’s tough to lose an election for student council, let alone for president. So it made sense that, after November 2016, Hillary Clinton would have spent some time wallowing in the past, howling at the universe with a side of Chardonnay. That’s the frame of mind she described in What Happened, her post-campaign memoir that came out in September, which was more of an angry play-by-play of how she was wronged than a clear-headed self-assessment of the race. Now, five months after the book came out, 15 months after the election, Clinton’s been spotted promoting family friend Lanny Davis’ new book, The Unmaking of the President 2016: How FBI Director James Comey Cost Hillary Clinton the Presidency.

We just passed Groundhog Day on the calendar, but it feels like we’re still living it; we can’t break free from the gnashing and rehashing of the 2016 election. It’s not just the Mueller probe and legitimate questions about Russian influence. It’s the emotional notes of triumph and defeat. President Donald Trump hasn’t dropped the subject, which is as perplexing as anything else Trump has done. But Clinton hasn’t dropped it, either. And at this point, she should.

I feel little nervous saying that, knowing what backlash will come: Clinton won the popular vote, she made history, she’s double-ultra-accomplished, and suggesting that she sing a different tune is really just trying to silence her. Her fans are highly sensitive about critiques, and their fury reached a crescendo in December, when Vanity Fair posted a snarky video suggesting New Year’s resolutions for Clinton—including “put away your James Comey voodoo doll” and take up knitting—and then, after a Twitter frenzy, sort of apologized.

Knitting was a little much—I’m not suggesting Clinton retreat from public life to a domestic one, unless that’s what she wants. But let’s put the video in context: The media are often unkind to losing candidates of every gender. In March 2013, four months after he lost to Barack Obama, the Atlantic ran a snarky piece about the “Bizarre Post-Election Life” of Mitt Romney, caught in such shocking acts as pumping his own gas, ordering McDonald’s and going to Costco. Around that time, Romney did his first major post-election interview on “Fox News Sunday”; a Washington Post story about it began, “One hundred seventeen days later, Mitt Romney still isn’t over it.” Ever since his gut-piercing loss in 2000, writers have pop-psychologized over Al Gore’s weight gain and post-election facial hair. “It is the beard of the hermit,” one Guardian columnist wrote, “a former warrior sorely done by and meditating in his manly cave until the people realise their folly.”

What Gore and Romney have managed to do, though, is move on—or at least make it look like they have—and reinvent. Romney has made his way back to the arena, after finding a new state in which to run for office and distinguishing himself as a rare Republican politician who criticized Trump flat out (with a brief interlude when he tried to position himself to be Trump’s secretary of state). Gore turned the 2000 race into a throwaway punch line and embarked on a second act as an investor, climate-change Cassandra and Nobel laureate. This is what many of Clinton’s critics want for her: Not to be silent, but to say something different. She’s missing an opportunity to define herself beyond being the candidate who—fairly, unfairly, or both—lost a seemingly winnable election to Trump.

Self-definition, reinvention, self-improvement; those ideas sound like the stuff of Oprah, the potentially-though-probably-not-but-hell-who-knows 2020 presidential candidate. In fact, the internet is clogged with advice about what to do after a painful defeat. A 2016 piece of aggregated wisdom in Business News Daily, “How Successful Leaders Recover from Failure,” wraps it up in bullet points: “Apologize quickly and own up,” “Analyze what went wrong,” and “Move on.” The job search website Ladders recently posted a list of “10 things smart people never say,” from “It’s not my fault” to “It’s not fair” to “He’s lazy/incompetent/a jerk.”

How is it that Clinton, who is successful and smart, hasn’t followed the most basic, Goop-like advice? For one thing, self-reflection isn’t easy or natural, which is why there are so many of these lists in the first place. Plus, it’s harder to let go when a mob of people—from inner-circle loyalists like Lanny Davis to the internet hordes—are egging you on while rending their garments over Trump.

But the irony is that Clinton has done it right before, handling past adversity in ways that were productive and inspired. In one of the feminist triumphs of modern politics, she refused to lock herself into the “wronged wife” story line, launched an ambitious bid for U.S. Senate from New York, and began a soaring political career. In 2008, after a tight loss to Obama in the Democratic primary, she graciously accepted his offer to be secretary of state, where she oversaw Washington’s “reset” with Moscow, managed sanctions in Iran and crises in Pakistan, and launched the Global Hunger and Food Security Initiative.

Perhaps Clinton was able to bounce back so quickly because she knew the presidency was still within reach. Now that goal is off the table, and she has yet to fully embrace a cause or future that can separate her from her loss. Finding the right path, among many possible options, is surely a challenge. But if she does commit herself to reinvention, Clinton will find that she is better-positioned than ever to make a difference. She’ll be free from the daily trench warfare of Washington. Her every move will still attract attention. And her experiences as senator and secretary of state have prepared her for roll-up-your-sleeves work on policy issues, from the child-welfare matters that started her career to the status of women worldwide. Clinton has taken baby steps in that direction: Last week, at a Georgetown University event, she spoke about how climate change will disproportionately affect women.

She could dive into the private sector, creating a market solution for any number of problems. She could follow Gore’s path and take on a single cause as a public advocate. Naysayers be damned, she could run for office again. She’s the same age as Romney—and younger than Joe Biden.

The point is to drop any public grumbling about the past, or calling out of Trump in outraged tweets, or stirring up partisan fury by mocking Trump in public. (Though at least her cameo at the Grammys, reading a passage from “Fire and Fury,” redeemed itself with a self-deprecating joke: “The Grammy’s in the bag?”) There are plenty of people willing and able to analyze the 2016 race and point out the absurdities of Trump. Clinton doesn’t need to be a voice in that mix. She has the chance to go down in history as much more than the almost-first-woman-president. It starts with changing the subject.

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Top Intel Committee Democrat Adam Schiff says Trump’s hypocrisy on the memos ‘reaches out and grabs you by the throat’ — But Polls show Republicans winning

February 12, 2018

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  • Kellyanne Conway said President Donald Trump refused to release the Democratic memo responding to Rep. Devin Nunes controversial Russia investigation memo because it contained improper information about confidential “sources and methods” that need to be redacted.
  • Trump had previously authorized the Nunes memo, against the warnings of intelligence agencies, reportedly without even reading it.
  • Ranking Democrat on the committee Rep. Adam Schiff criticized Trump’s apparent double standard, saying “the hypocrisy of this just kind of reaches out and grabs you by the throat.”
  • Trump had previously attacked Schiff on Twitter, saying he need to be “stopped.”

Counselor Kellyanne Conway defended President Donald Trump’s refusal on Friday to release a Democratic rebuttal to the controversial memo on the Russia investigation, authored by House Intelligence Committee chairman Rep. Devin Nunes, despite Trump’s decision to release Nunes’ memo last week.

Speaking on ABC’s “This Week”, Conway told host George Stephanopoulos that the Democratic memo includes classified information that needs to be redacted.

“The Democratic memo is much longer,” she said. “It’s much more involved. And those who are in a position to know national security and lawyers have said that it contains sources and methods that could be very compromising. So they want to make sure that that is cured before it is released to the public.”

The week before, Trump authorized the release of the the Nunes memo that details alleged misconduct on the part of the FBI and Justice Department in the Russia investigation. The FBI had released a rare public statement urging against its release, cautioning that it could reveal intelligence methods.

The first memo claims that the FBI and DOJ misled a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance court in order to obtain and renew a so-called FISA warrant on former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page, and that they used the largely uncorroborated Trump-Russia dossier as the primary source of evidence in their application.

The Democratic rebuttal memo pushes back against the Nunes memo’s claims, in particular criticizing its assertion that the dossier was the sole basis for the Page FISA application, two sources on the House Intelligence Committee told Business Insider.

Trump declined to declassify the Democratic memo, and sent it back to the committe for revisions.

The ranking Democrat on the committee, Rep. Adam Schiff, had some harsh words on the White House’s measured response to the Democratic memo. Speaking on CBS’s Face the Nation, he accused Trump of putting “his own personal interest above the national security interest of the country.”

“The hypocrisy of this just kind of reaches out and grabs you by the throat,” Schiff said. “Here the Republicans write a memo the FBI quite accurately describes as misleading and omitting material facts, the Department of Justice says it would be ‘extraordinary reckless’ to release this. And what does the president do? He says ‘I’m going to release it, before I even read it, 100% I’m going to release it.'”

Despite Trump’s initial refusal to release Schiff and the Democrats’ memo, Conway said he was open to doing so once the appropriate redactions were made.

“This is serious business,” she said, “and if it takes a little bit of extra time to get the transparency and accountability out there, we should all respect that. The president is inclined to declassify as he did the other memo.”

She told Stephanopoulos that Schiff is complying with the redaction process.

Trump throws his weight behind Nunes, against Schiff

Donald TrumpPresident Donald Trump. AP

Trump attacked Schiff on Twitter Monday.

“Little Adam Schiff, who is desperate to run for higher office, is one of the biggest liars and leakers in Washington, right up there with Comey, Warner, Brennan and Clapper!” Trump tweeted. “Adam leaves closed committee hearings to illegally leak confidential information. Must be stopped!”

Trump has stated that the Nunes memo “totally vindicates” him in the special counsel’s investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and the Trump campaign’s potential collusion in the Kremlin’s efforts.

But Rep. Trey Gowdy, a Republican on the House Intelligence Committee who helped author the Nunes memo, pushed back against this claim.

“I’m sure the president is frustrated,” Gowdy said after Trump released the first memo. “So I’m sure that that instructs some of what he said. I actually don’t think it has any impact on the Russia probe for this reason.”

The Nunes memo fell short of expectations

devin nunesRep. Devin Nunes . Jonathan Ernst/Reuters

The memo itself, which Nunes had promised would be a bombshell, proved largely underwhelming after its release.

Blasting the memo in a tweet the day the memo was released, former FBI director James Comey wrote, “That’s it?”

Critics of the Nunes memo have pointed out that it does not even come close to answering the key question it was supposed to address — whether the warrant application was obtained illegally — because it does not include any other supporting information that investigators presented to the court.

In addition, the memo seemed to undercut the idea that Nunes insisted it casts doubt on the validity of the Russia investigation as a whole.

The application to surveil Page was filed in October 2016. But the memo notes the FBI opened its  investigation into links between Trump and Russia in July 2016, on account of “Papadopoulos information.”

This is a reference of former Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos, who reportedly told an Australian ambassador that Russia had “dirt” on 2016 Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton during a night out in London in May 2016.

In addition to his first memo, Nunes is looking to possible release as many as five more memos. These memos reportedly allege misconduct at the State Department.

Intelligence experts warned against the precedent that releasing memos could set.

“Dishonest and misleading memo wrecked the House intel committee, destroyed trust with Intelligence Community, damaged relationship with FISA court, and inexcusably exposed classified investigation of an American citizen,” Comey said. “For what? DOJ & FBI must keep doing their jobs.”

http://www.businessinsider.com/trump-memos-hypocrisy-schiff-kellyanne-defense-2018-2

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Peeling back the layers of Hillary Clinton’s deceit

February 11, 2018

By Michael Goodwin
New York Post

February 10, 2018

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For law enforcement, Congress and even journalists, exposing misdeeds is like peeling an onion. Each layer you remove gets you closer to the truth.

So it is with the scandalous behavior of the FBI during its probe into whether President Trump’s campaign conspired with Russia in 2016. One layer at a time, we’re learning how flawed and dirty that probe was.

A top layer involves the texts between FBI lawyer Lisa Page and her married lover, Peter Strzok, the lead agent on the Hillary Clinton e-mail probe. They casually mention an “insurance policy” in the event Trump won the election and a plan for Strzok to go easy on Clinton because she probably would be their next boss.

Those exchanges, seen in the light of subsequent events, lead to a reasonable conclusion that the fix was in among then-Director James Comey’s team to hurt Trump and help Clinton.

Another layer involves the declassified House memo, which indicates the FBI and Justice Department depended heavily on the unverified Russian dossier about Trump to get a warrant to spy on Carter Page, an American citizen and briefly a Trump adviser.

The House memo also reveals that Comey and others withheld from the secret surveillance court key partisan facts that would have cast doubt on the dossier. Officials never revealed to the judges that the document was paid for by Clinton’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee or that Christopher Steele, the former British spy who compiled the dossier, said he was “desperate that Donald Trump not get elected.”

A third layer of the onion involves the revelations in the letter GOP Sens. Charles Grassley and Lindsey Graham wrote to the Justice Department. They urge a criminal investigation into whether Steele lied to the FBI about how much and when he fed the dossier to the anti-Trump media.

The letter is compelling in showing that Steele said one thing under oath to a British court and something different to the FBI. The contradictions matter because the agency relied on Steele’s credibility in both the FISA applications and its actual investigation. Strangely, even after it fired him for breaking its rule forbidding media contact, the FBI continued to praise his credibility in court.

If that were all the senators’ letter accomplished, it would be enough. But it does much more.

It also reveals that two former journalists linked to Clinton, separately identified as the odious Sidney Blumenthal   and a man named Cody Shearer, created and gave a State Department official additional unverified allegations against Trump.

The official passed those documents to Steele, who passed them to the FBI, which reportedly saw them as further evidence that Trump worked with Russians. But as Grassley, head of the Judiciary Committee, and Graham write, “It is troubling enough that the Clinton Campaign funded Mr. Steele’s work, but that these Clinton associates were contemporaneously feeding Mr. Steele allegations raises additional concerns about his credibility.”

The State Department official involved in the episode, Jonathan Winer, wrote an Op-Ed in the Washington Post Friday in which he confessed to the senators’ chronology while offering a benign description of his motives. Winer also admitted he shared all the unverified allegations from the Clinton hitmen with other State Department officials.There are many more layers of the onion to peel, but here’s where we are now: It increasingly appears that the Clinton machine was the secret, original source of virtually all the allegations about Trump and Russia that led to the FBI investigation.

In addition, the campaign and its associates, including Steele, were behind the explosion of anonymously sourced media reports during the fall of 2016 about that investigation.

Thus, the Democratic nominee paid for and created allegations against her Republican opponent, gave them to law enforcement, then tipped friendly media to the investigation. And it is almost certain FBI agents supporting Clinton were among the anonymous sources.

In fact, the Clinton connections are so fundamental that there probably would not have been an FBI investigation without her involvement.

That makes hers a brazen work of political genius — and perhaps the dirtiest dirty trick ever played in presidential history. Following her manipulation of the party operation to thwart Bernie Sanders in the primary, Clinton is revealed as relentlessly ruthless in her quest to be president.

The only thing that went wrong is that she lost the election. And based on what we know now, her claims about Trump were false.

Of the charges against four men brought by special counsel Robert Mueller, none involves helping Russia interfere with the election.

And neither the FBI nor Mueller has vouched for the truthfulness of the Blumenthal and Shearer claims or the Steele dossier. ­Instead, the dossier faces defamation lawsuits in the US and England from several people named in it.

In fairness, one person besides Steele has been cited as justification for the FBI probe. George Papadopoulos, a bit but ambitious player in the Trump orbit, met with a professor in Europe early in 2016 who told him the Kremlin had Clinton’s private e-mails.

In May 2016, Papadopoulos told the story to an Australian diplomat and two months later, in July, the Australian government alerted the FBI.

However, a full timeline convincingly points to Steele as the initial spark. He was hired by a Clinton contractor in June of 2016, and filed his first allegations against Trump on June 20. Two weeks later, on July 5, he met with an FBI agent in London, The Washington Post reported, and filed three more allegations that month, including one about Carter Page.

At any rate, it is certain that Steele and other Clinton operators provided all the allegations about Trump himself that the FBI started with and that Mueller inherited.

For Clinton, creating a cloud over Trump’s presidency and helping to put the nation through continuing turmoil is a victory of sorts. America is fortunate it’s her only victory.

 

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https://nypost.com/2018/02/10/peeling-back-the-layers-of-hillary-clintons-deceit/
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GOP memo proves the ‘deep state’ is real

February 4, 2018

By Michael Goodwin
The New York Post
February 3, 2018

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James Comey. Credit Getty Images

Now that we know what the declassified House memo says about government misconduct, we also know what it means: The Washington swamp — the deep state — is bigger, more vicious and more dangerous to American liberty than even a cynic could have imagined.

Because of the memo and previous revelations, we know that swamp creatures are embedded in the top of the FBI and the Department of Justice. Some used their power to try to tip a presidential campaign based on their personal politics.

They conducted a sham investigation of the Democratic candidate and misled federal judges to spy on at least one associate of her Republican challenger.

To block exposure of their misdeeds, these officials falsely claimed that national security would be damaged. Add that despicable lie — issued in the name of the FBI itself — to their shameful records.

Thanks to the battle over the memo, we also know with 100 percent certainty that the mainstream media is part of the swamp. The efforts by The New York Times and The Washington Post, among others, to keep the memo from ever seeing sunshine were appalling.

Before it saw the memo, the Times’ editorial page called it proof of “The Republican Plot Against the FBI.” A Washington Post columnist warned President Trump he would be making a historic mistake in releasing it.

“Presidents don’t win fights with the FBI,” Eugene Robinson wrote, seemingly endorsing the blackmailing habits of the disgraced J. Edgar Hoover.

Oddly, the campaign by those papers coincided with the celebration of their roles in releasing the Pentagon Papers nearly 50 years ago, as heroically depicted in the movie “The Post.”

Then, those papers took great risks in standing up for the First Amendment in the face of government threats and financial pressures. Now, those same papers take the side of butt-covering secrecy and demonize those who demand transparency.

Those organizations are betraying their legacies and their duties as journalists. They share with corrupt officials a hatred of Donald Trump and believe that ending his presidency justifies any and all means.

Their motives are as partisan as that of the Democrats who fought tooth and nail to scuttle the memo.

alk about being on the wrong side of history.

The details of the memo make a strong case that current and former officials committed crimes by misleading FISA court judges in seeking four surveillance warrants against Carter Page, a bit player in the Trump campaign ­orbit.

Those details seal the sordid legacy of former FBI Director James Comey. He signed off on three warrant requests, reportedly without informing the judges that the essential piece of evidence against Page was the infamous Russian dossier paid for by Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee.

Months later, Comey himself told Congress the dossier was “salacious and unverified,” yet was secretly willing to use it in court against Page.

Its author, Christopher Steele, a former British spy, never went to Russia to interview his paid sources, some of whom were Kremlin officials. Did the judges know any of that before letting the FBI read Page’s e-mails and listen to his phone calls?

Steele was hired by the FBI, then fired when he shared his dossier with the press and lied about it. He also confided to an agent that he loathed Trump and “was passionate about him not ­being president.”

Did the agent, Bruce Ohr, whose wife worked for the same firm as Steele, Fusion GPS, tell the judges that? Did Comey? The memo says no.

Without knowing that partisan link, the court was deprived of evidence that would have called into question the surveillance request. Indeed, the memo claims that Andrew McCabe, the former deputy FBI director removed for his conduct during the separate Clinton investigation, testified that no warrant would have been sought “without the Steele dossier information.”

Not incidentally, current FBI Director Christopher Wray and his team read the memo before it was released, and did not dispute ­McCabe’s claim.

To the Trump haters, these facts don’t matter. He is, in their minds, unfit to be president, so nothing short of assassination is out of bounds.

Yet it is a mistake to view the memo’s revelations through the lens of whether you like Trump, or what you think of Carter Page. The ultimate issues are no more limited to them than were other landmark moments in American history limited by the personal ­interests of the parties involved.

The case in which Nazis were permitted to march in the Jewish neighborhood of Skokie, Ill., was not an approval of Nazis. The issue was whether repugnant speech has the same rights as popular speech.

The Supreme Court effectively said it did in a 1977 ruling that strengthened First Amendment rights for all Americans.

Similarly, the “Miranda warning” that allows a suspect in police custody to remain silent to avoid self-incrimination stems from a case involving a hideously violent criminal. Ernesto Miranda ultimately was convicted of kidnapping and rape, yet all suspects, innocent and guilty, benefit from the 1966 Supreme Court ruling in his favor.

Rulings like those weave the Founders’ ideals of equality into the fabric of contemporary life and make America the beacon of hope to the world.

Something even larger is now at stake. Trump is the great disrupter who has overthrown the established political order like no one in modern history, and many opponents have lost their bearings in resisting his presidency.

In their rage and bigotry, they are willing to abandon fundamental principles. We only know this because he won the election; none of this shocking misconduct would have been revealed under a Hillary Clinton presidency.

The claims in the memo that FBI and Justice officials acted corruptly should concern all fair-minded Americans, regardless of political preference. Those claims force us to ask whether we are a nation of laws that apply equally to all.

If not, we are no longer America. We are a banana republic where it’s acceptable for the government to use its police powers against political opponents.

The choice we face is especially stark given that the case at hand potentially implicates other top aides to former President Barack Obama. Recall that Page and others linked to Trump were accused of having ties to Russia, then their names were leaked to the media in a bid to sway the election and then to topple the president. There may be other flimsy FISA applications covering other Trump associates we don’t yet know about.

The memo is a giant step in ­uncovering what appears to be an unprecedented conspiracy, but it is not the endgame. More documents, congressional hearings, investigations and criminal prosecutions are unavoidable.

Hysterical Trump haters greeted the memo’s release by declaring that we face a constitutional crisis. They are right — and they are creating it.

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https://nypost.com/2018/02/03/the-gop-memo-proves-the-deep-state-is-real/?utm_campaign=iosapp&utm_source=mail_app

Trump claims memo ‘totally vindicates’ him in Russia probe

February 3, 2018

A congressional memo alleges the FBI abused its surveillance powers during an investigation into possible Russia ties surrounding Donald Trump’s presidential campaign. (AFP)
WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump on Saturday claimed complete vindication from a congressional memo that alleges the FBI abused its surveillance powers during the investigation into his campaign’s possible Russia ties. But the memo also includes revelations that might complicate efforts by Trump and his allies to undermine special counsel Robert Mueller’s inquiry.
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The four-page document released Friday contends that the FBI, when it applied for a surveillance warrant on a onetime Trump campaign associate, relied excessively on an ex-British spy whose opposition research was funded by Democrats. At the same time, the memo confirms that the investigation into potential Trump links to Russia actually began several months earlier, and was “triggered” by information involving a different campaign aide.
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Christopher Steele, the former spy who compiled the allegations, acknowledged having strong anti-Trump sentiments. But he also was a “longtime FBI source” with a credible track record, according to the memo from the House Intelligence Committee chairman, Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., and his staff.
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The warrant authorizing the FBI to monitor the communications of former campaign adviser Carter Page was not a one-time request, but was approved by a judge on four occasions, the memo says, and even signed off on by the second-ranking official at the Justice Department, Rod Rosenstein, whom Trump appointed as deputy attorney general.
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Trump, however, tweeted from Florida, where he was spending the weekend, that the memo puts him in the clear.
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“This memo totally vindicates ‘Trump’ in probe,” he said. “But the Russian Witch Hunt goes on and on. Their (sic) was no Collusion and there was no Obstruction (the word now used because, after one year of looking endlessly and finding NOTHING, collusion is dead). This is an American disgrace!“
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The underlying materials that served as the basis for the warrant application were not made public in the memo. As a result, the document only further intensified a partisan battle over how to interpret the actions of the FBI and Justice Department during the early stages of the counterintelligence investigation that Mueller later inherited.
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Some Republicans are citing the memo, released over the objections of the FBI and Justice Department, in their arguments that the Mueller investigation is politically tainted.
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A closer read presents a far more nuanced picture.
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“Having decided to cherry-pick, the Nunes team picked a bunch of the wrong cherries for its own narrative,” Matthew Waxman, a Columbia University professor and former Bush administration official, wrote in an email.
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The memo’s central allegation is that agents and prosecutors, in applying in October 2016 to monitor Page’s communications, failed to tell a judge that the opposition research that provided grounds for the FBI’s suspicion had been partially funded by Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign and the Democratic National Committee.
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Page had stopped advising the campaign sometime around the end of that summer.
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Republicans say a judge should have known that “political actors” were involved in allegations that led the Justice Department to believe Page might be an agent of a foreign power — an accusation has consistently and strenuously denied.
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Steele’s research, according to the memo, “formed an essential part” of the warrant application. But it’s unclear how much or what information Steele collected made it into the application, or how much has been corroborated. Steele’s opposition research effort was initially funded by the conservative Washington Free Beacon.
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The FBI this week expressed “grave concerns” about the memo and called it inaccurate and incomplete. Democrats said it was a set of cherry-picked claims aimed at smearing law enforcement and that releasing the memo would damage law enforcement and intelligence work.
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For one, Democrats said Friday that it was misleading and incorrect to say a judge was not told of the potential political motivations of the people paying for Steele’s research.
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Beyond that, though, the memo confirms the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation into the Trump campaign began in July 2016, months before the surveillance warrant was sought, and was “triggered” by information concerning campaign aide George Papadopoulos. He pleaded guilty last year to lying to the FBI and is cooperating with Mueller’s investigation.
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The timing makes clear that other Trump associates beyond Page, who was part of the election effort for only a short period and was not in Trump’s inner circle, had generated law enforcement scrutiny. The memo also omits that Page had been on the FBI’s radar a few years earlier as part of a separate counterintelligence investigation into Russian influence.
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The memo focuses on Page, but Democrats on the House committee said “this ignores the inconvenient fact that the investigation did not begin with, or arise from Christopher Steele or the dossier, and that the investigation would persist on the basis of wholly independent evidence had Christopher Steele never entered the picture.”
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Other details in the memo could also challenge Republican claims of bias. The warrant requested was renewed on three additional occasions, meaning that judges approved it four times. One of the Justice Department officials who signed off on it was Rosenstein, a Trump appointee.
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Trump, who lambasted the FBI and Justice Department on Twitter, was asked if he was more likely to fire Rosenstein and if he still had confidence in the official. The president simply said, “You figure that one out.”
The memo had been classified because it deals with warrants obtained from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. The White House declassified it Friday and sent it to Nunes for immediate release.
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That disclosure is extraordinary because it involves details about surveillance of Americans, national security information the government regards as among its most highly classified. The release is likely to further escalate the conflict between the White House and Trump’s law enforcement leaders.
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Rosenstein and FBI Director Christopher Wray had personally lobbied against the memo’s disclosure, arguing it could set a dangerous precedent.
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The memo’s release also comes amid an effort by Trump and congressional Republicans to discredit Mueller’s investigation. His probe focuses not only on whether the Trump campaign coordinated with Russia but also on whether the president sought to obstruct justice.

Obama and the FISA Court

February 3, 2018

Both of their reputations cannot survive the collusion investigation.

Former President Barack Obama in Chicago in December.
Former President Barack Obama in Chicago in December. PHOTO: MAURY/EPA/SHUTTERSTOCK

This column is trying to imagine how an editor at The Wall Street Journal would treat a draft article alleging a political campaign adviser was secretly working for a foreign government if the story featured uncorroborated opposition research paid for by a rival campaign. If the writer of the draft article assured the editor that readers would not be told where the information originated, it’s a safe bet this would not increase the chances of publication.

This column is also trying to imagine the conversation that would ensue if a reporter or writer then tried to persuade the editor by appealing to the authority of Yahoo News.

Of course the Journal isn’t the only media outlet that enforces standards. Many organizations strive to ensure basic accuracy and fairness. Can it possibly be true that the evidentiary standards for obtaining a federal warrant allowing the government to spy on the party out of power are significantly lower than in a professional newsroom?

Today the American people are finally able to see the memo from the majority staff of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence alleging abuse of government surveillance powers during the last presidential campaign. Many will be appalled that, at least according to the memo, on October 21, 2016 the Department of Justice and the FBI obtained a court order authorizing electronic surveillance on a Trump campaign volunteer without telling the court that Hillary Clinton and the Democratic National Committee had paid for at least some of the research presented.

The memo further states that according to the head of the FBI’s counterintelligence division, corroboration of the research was in its “infancy” at the time the government requested and received approval for this surveillance. Is it that easy to spy on the party out of power?

Today a number of libertarians and liberals are pointing to a blog post by USC law professor Orin Kerr, who says that failure to disclose the interests of the source is often a non-issue:

Part of the problem is that judges figure that of course informants are often biased. Informants usually have ulterior motives, and judges don’t need to be told that. A helpful case is United States v. Strifler, 851 F.2d 1197, 1201 (9th Cir. 1988), in which the government obtained a warrant to search a house for a meth lab inside. Probable cause was based largely on a confidential informant who told the police that he had not only seen a meth lab in the house but had even helped others to try to manufacture meth there. The magistrate judge issued the warrant based on the informant’s detailed tip. The search was successful and charges followed.

The defendants challenged the warrant on the ground that the affidavit had failed to mention the remarkable ulterior motives of the informant. The affidavit didn’t mention that the “informant” was actually a married couple that had been in a quarrel with the defendants; that the couple was facing criminal charges themselves and had been “guaranteed by the prosecutor that they would not be prosecuted if they provided information”; and that they had been paid by the government for giving the information. The affidavit didn’t mention any of that. A big deal, right?

According to the court, no. “It would have to be a very naive magistrate who would suppose that a confidential informant would drop in off the street with such detailed evidence and not have an ulterior motive,” Judge Noonan wrote. “The magistrate would naturally have assumed that the informant was not a disinterested citizen.” The fact that the magistrate wasn’t told that the “informant” was guaranteed to go free and paid for the information didn’t matter, as “the magistrate was given reason to think the informant knew a good deal about what was going on” inside the house.

If this is accurate, and if it’s also acceptable to include uncorroborated information in warrant applications, this means that the bar for approving government spying against domestic political opponents is significantly lower than most Americans have been led to believe.

A former government official, having read the Kerr argument, writes via email:

In meth cases, the judges all know the informants are dirtbags. But as Kerr admits, context is everything in these fact determinations. It’s hardly irrelevant that one presidential campaign is being spied on with the collusion of the existing administration and its candidate. Perhaps prosecutors should be mindful of their high ethical obligations in such a unique case. After all, there is the small matter of the credibility not only of law enforcement but the entire democratic process riding on it.

The Democrats on the Intelligence committee seem eager to release their own memo so perhaps we’ll learn more, but based on today’s release it appears either that the Obama administration engaged in historic abuse or that the FISA court cannot be trusted to protect our liberties, or perhaps both.

Readers concerned about the government’s surveillance authority may be interested to know about one current member of the Intelligence committee who began focusing on this issue all the way back in the George W. Bush administration.

In March of 2007, he announced that he was “deeply troubled” by what he called “abuses of authority” by the FBI in acquiring personal information on U.S. citizens. Over the years, he urged various restrictions on the ability of the executive branch to get information on Americans’ phone calls. In order “to protect privacy and increase transparency” he sought in various ways to reform the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court—the very court that approved the electronic surveillance of a Trump associate for reasons that are still not entirely clear.

Way ahead of the news, this particular lawmaker specifically introduced the “Ending Secret Law Act” which according to a press release from his office, “would require the Attorney General to declassify significant Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) opinions, allowing Americans to know how the Court has interpreted” its legal authorities.

This lawmaker said that his legislation “will help ensure we have true checks and balances when it comes to the judges who are given the responsibility of overseeing our most sensitive intelligence gathering and national security programs.”

His name is Adam Schiff, and he is now the ranking member on House Intelligence. But oddly he doesn’t seem to want to take credit for his early concern for civil liberties.

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 https://www.wsj.com/articles/obama-and-the-fisa-court-1517608555

House Intel votes to release controversial surveillance memo — Said to show government abuse of surveillance procedures — Dems say memo release risks compromising intelligence gathering

January 30, 2018

The House Intelligence Committee on Monday evening voted to release a classified memo circulating in Congress that purportedly reveals government surveillance abuses.

The vote was announced to reporters by California Rep. Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the committee, who called it a “very sad day, I think, in the history of this committee.” The motion passed on a party-line basis, he said.

President Trump now has five days to decide whether he has any objections before the memo can be publicly released.

GOP LAWMAKERS DEMAND THAT ‘ALARMING’ MEMO ON FISA ABUSES BE MADE PUBLIC

Last week, a top Justice Department official urged House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes not to release the memo, saying it would be “extraordinarily reckless” and could harm national security and ongoing investigations.

The four-page memo has being described by GOP lawmakers as “shocking,” “troubling” and “alarming,” with one congressman likening the details to KGB activity in Russia.

Those who have seen the document suggest it reveals what role the unverified anti-Trump “dossier” played in the application for a surveillance warrant on at least one Trump associate.

Schiff said the GOP-majority committee also voted against releasing a counter memo written by Democrats.

“Today this committee voted to put the president’s personal interests, perhaps their own political interests, above the national interests,” the Democrat said.

Another Democratic member, Mike Quiqley of Illinois, described the GOP memo as “a book report by a high school kid at 1 a.m. on two Red Bulls who hasn’t read the book.”

Tea Party Patriots CEO Jenny Beth Martin provides insight on 'Fox & Friends First.'

“It’s a contravention of the facts,” he added. “Today was a demonstration that there are no more rules.”

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said in a statement that the committee’s Republicans had “crossed from dangerous irresponsibility and disregard for our national security into the realm of cover up” and “disregarded the warnings of the Justice Department and the FBI.”

“Chairman Nunes’ memo contains significant inaccuracies and omissions that misrepresent the underlying intelligence and jeopardize the effectiveness of our intelligence and law enforcement communities,” Pelosi added.

The vote came the same day that it was reported that FBI official Andrew McCabe has left his post as deputy director.

The White House seems to favor the memo’s release, but wouldn’t explicitly say whether the president will back the effort.

“We want full transparency,” White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said Monday. “That’s what we have said all along.”

Sanders said they were letting the process play out before officially weighing in.

FBI DEPUTY DIRECTOR ANDREW MCCABE ‘REMOVED’ FROM THE BUREAU

On Sunday, FBI Director Christopher Wray went to the Capitol on Sunday to view the four-page memo, sources told Fox News.

According to one source, Wray was asked to point out inaccuracies or other issues with the wording — and said he would need “his people to take a look at it.” The source said the review is ongoing.

South Carolina GOP Rep. Trey Gowdy, who helped write the four-page memo, said Sunday he wants it made public.

He also suggested the memo indeed addresses whether the FBI relied at least in part on the dossier — paid for partially by Democrats and the Clinton campaign during the 2016 presidential election — to apply to a secret federal court to get a surveillance warrant, purportedly on then-Trump adviser Carter Page.

“If you … want to know whether or not the dossier was used in court proceedings, whether or not it was vetted before it was used. … If you are interested in who paid for the dossier … then, yes, you’ll want the memo to come out,” Gowdy told “Fox News Sunday.”

The dossier was compiled by former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele and contained opposition research on Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign. Steele was hired by the U.S. firm Fusion GPS, which commissioned the research with funding from the Democratic National Committee and the campaign of Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. At the same time, the firm was allegedly doing work to help the Russian government fight sanctions.

Requests for surveillance warrants are made through the U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, also known as the FISA court, and target suspected foreign spies inside the United States.

Responding to reports the U.S. extended surveillance on him last spring, Carter Page told Fox News that U.S.-Russia relations have been “dominated by misunderstandings throughout much of the past 70 years, since the original McCarthy era. I harbor no ill will towards anyone for past xenophobic biases and only hope that justice is eventually served.”

Fox News’ Pamela K. Browne, Joseph Weber and Catherine Herridge contributed to this report.

Alex Pappas is a politics reporter at FoxNews.com. Follow him on Twitter at @AlexPappas.

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2018/01/29/house-intel-votes-to-release-controversial-surveillance-memo-to-public.html

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Representative Adam B. Schiff, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, said on Monday that it has been a “sad day” for the committee and that Republicans had voted “to politicize the intelligence process.” Credit Al Drago for The New York Times

WASHINGTON — Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee, disregarding Justice Department warnings that their actions would be “extraordinarily reckless,” voted Monday evening to release a contentious secret memorandum said to accuse the department and the F.B.I. of misusing their authority to obtain a secret surveillance order on a former Trump campaign associate.

The vote, made along party lines, threw fuel on an already fiery partisan conflict over the investigations into Russia’s brazen meddling in the 2016 presidential election. Republicans invoked a power never before used by the secretive committee to effectively declassify the memo that they had compiled. It was an extraordinary maneuver, cheered on by President Trump, who has repeatedly dismissed the Russia investigation as a “witch hunt” and a sham.

Committee Republicans said the memo’s release would shed useful light on potential political bias that may have warped the early stages of the Russia investigation without compromising intelligence gathering. Representative K. Michael Conaway of Texas, a senior Republican on the committee, said on Monday that he was confident the Republican memo itself would not present a national security risk and was complete and fair as written.

Democrats called the three-and-a-half-page document a dangerous effort to build a narrative to undercut the department’s continuing Russia investigation, using cherry-picked facts assembled with little or no context. Speaking to reporters after the closed-door vote, Representative Adam B. Schiff of California, the committee’s top Democrat, said Republicans had voted “to politicize the intelligence process.”

“Sadly, we expect that the president of the United States will not put the national interest over his own personal interest,” Mr. Schiff said. “But it is a sad day indeed when that is also true of our own committee.”

Mr. Schiff said the committee had opened new avenues to investigate the Justice Department and F.B.I., a characterization disputed by Mr. Conaway.

What comes next was less clear. Under the obscure House rule invoked by the committee, Mr. Trump now has five days to review the document and decide whether to try to block it from going public. The White House has repeatedly indicated that it wants the memo out, but Mr. Trump’s Justice Department had been working to slow or block its release.

Shortly after Monday’s vote, the memo was taken to the White House, where it was being reviewed by White House lawyers, according to a person familiar with the review.

Voting as a bloc, Democrats tried to advance a series of motions on Monday that they said would help put the Republican memo in context. All but one of those motions failed along party lines. The committee did make a Democratic memo rebutting the Republican version available to the full House, but Republicans said they wanted time for members to review the document before considering its public release.

The Republican memo, which was made available to all members of the House, is said to contend that officials from the two agencies were not forthcoming to a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court judge. Republicans accuse the agencies of not properly disclosing that the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign helped finance research that was used to obtain a warrant for surveillance of Carter Page, a Trump campaign adviser. The research presented to the judge was assembled by a former British intelligence officer, Christopher Steele.

NYT:https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/29/us/politics/release-the-memo-vote-house-intelligence-republicans.html?action=click&module=Top%20Stories&pgtype=Homepage

Evidence suggests a massive scandal is brewing at the FBI

January 24, 2018

By Michael Goodwin
New York Post
January 23, 2018

Image may contain: 3 people, suit and closeup

During the financial crisis, the federal government bailed out banks it declared “too big to fail.” Fearing their bankruptcy might trigger economic Armageddon, the feds propped them up with taxpayer cash.

Something similar is happening now at the FBI, with the Washington wagons circling the agency to protect it from charges of corruption. This time, the appropriate tag line is “too big to believe.”

Yet each day brings credible reports suggesting there is a massive scandal involving the top ranks of America’s premier law enforcement agency. The reports, which feature talk among agents of a “secret society” and suddenly missing text messages, point to the existence both of a cabal dedicated to defeating Donald Trump in 2016 and of a plan to let Hillary Clinton skate free in the classified email probe.

If either one is true — and I believe both probably are — it would mean FBI leaders betrayed the nation by abusing their powers in a bid to pick the president.

More support for this view involves the FBI’s use of the Russian dossier on Trump that was paid for by the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee. It is almost certain that the FBI used the dossier to get FISA court warrants to spy on Trump associates, meaning it used the opposition research of the party in power to convince a court to let it spy on the candidate of the other party — likely without telling the court of the dossier’s political link.

Even worse, there is growing reason to believe someone in President Barack Obama’s administration turned over classified information about Trump to the Clinton campaign.

As one former federal prosecutor put it, “It doesn’t get worse than that.” That prosecutor, Joseph ­diGenova, believes Trump was correct when he claimed Obama aides wiretapped his phones at Trump Tower.

These and other elements combine to make a toxic brew that smells to high heaven, but most Americans don’t know much about it. Mainstream media coverage has been sparse and dismissive and there’s a blackout from the same Democrats obsessed with Russia, Russia, Russia.

Partisan motives aside, it’s as if a scandal of this magnitude is more than America can bear — so let’s pretend there’s nothing to see and move along.

But, thankfully, the disgraceful episode won’t be washed away, thanks to a handful of congressional Republicans, led by California Rep. Devin Nunes, chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. After he accused the FBI of stonewalling in turning over records, the bureau relented, at least partially.

The result was clear evidence of bias against Trump by officials charged with investigating him and Clinton. Those same agents appear to have acted on that bias to tilt the election to Clinton.

In one text message, an agent suggests that Attorney General Loretta Lynch knew while the investigation was still going on that the FBI would not recommend charges against Clinton.

How could she know unless the fix was in?

All roads in the explosive developments lead to James Comey, whose Boy Scout image belied a sinister belief that he, like his infamous predecessor J. Edgar Hoover, was above the law.

It is why I named him J. Edgar Comey last year and wrote that he was “adept at using innuendo and leaks” to let everybody in Washington know they could be the next to be investigated.

It was in the office of Comey’s top deputy, Andrew McCabe, where agents discussed an “insurance policy” in the event that Trump won. Reports indicated that the Russia collusion probe was that insurance policy.

The text was from Peter Strzok, the top investigator on the Trump case, and was sent to Lisa Page, an FBI lawyer and also his mistress.

“I want to believe the path you threw out for consideration in Andy’s office — that there’s no way he gets elected — but I’m afraid we can’t take that risk. It’s like an insurance policy in the unlikely event you die before you’re 40 . . .,” Strzok wrote.

It is frightening that Strzok, who called Trump “an idiot,” was the lead investigator on both the Clinton and Trump cases.

After these messages surfaced, special counsel Robert Mueller removed Strzok and Page from his probe, though both still work at the FBI.

Strzok, despite his talk of an “insurance policy” in 2016, wrote in May 2017 that he was skeptical that Mueller’s probe would find anything on Trump because “there’s no big there there.”

Talk about irony. While Dems and the left-wing media already found Trump guilty of collusion before Mueller was appointed, the real scandal might be the conduct of the probers themselves.

Suspicions are hardly allayed by the fact that the FBI says it can’t find five months of messages between Strzok and Page, who exchanged an estimated 50,000 messages overall. The missing period — Dec. 14, 2016, through May 17, 2017 — was a crucial time in Washington.

There were numerous leaks of classified material just before and after Trump’s inauguration on Jan. 20.

And the president fired Comey last May 9, provoking an intense lobbying effort for a special counsel, which led to Mueller’s appointment on May 19.

Jeff Sessions, the attorney general, has emerged from his hidey hole to notice that the FBI has run amok, and said Monday he would “leave no stone unturned” to find the five months of missing texts.

Fine, but the House is racing ahead of him. Nunes has prepared a four-page memo, based on classified material that purportedly lays out what the FBI and others did to corrupt the election.

A movement to release the memo is gaining steam, but Congress says it might take weeks. Why wait? Americans can handle the truth, no matter how big it is.

https://nypost.com/2018/01/23/evidence-suggests-a-massive-scandal-is-brewing-at-the-fbi/

Australian diplomat’s tip led to Trump Russia probe: New York Times

December 31, 2017

A Trump campaign adviser’s revelations to the UK-based diplomat eventually prompted the FBI to open an investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election, a US newspaper reports.

Trump and Putin (picture-alliance/dpa/AP)

A tip from a top Australian diplomat helped persuade US authorities to investigate Russian attempts to intervene in the 2016 US presidential election, the New York Times reported on Saturday.

Australian officials passed on information to the FBI that the diplomat, Alexander Downer, had allegedly received from George Papadopoulos, a former campaign adviser to Donald Trump, during what the Times described as “a night of heavy drinking at an upscale London bar” in May 2016.

Papadopoulos, an ex-foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign who is now a cooperating witness in the investigation, reportedly told Downer that Russia had thousands of emails that would embarrass Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton. Downer, a former foreign minister, is Australia’s top diplomat in Britain.

“The hacking and the revelation that a member of the Trump campaign may have had inside information about it were driving factors that led the FBI to open an investigation in July 2016,” the newspaper said.

Alexander Downer (Getty Images/AFP/D. Leal-Olivas)Alexander Downer has been Australia’s High Commissioner to the UK since 2014

The new revelation means that it was not just the so-called Steele dossier — allegations compiled by British intelligence agent Christopher Steele that Russia had collected damning information on Trump — that led to the probe, but also direct information from one of the US’s closest allies.

Read more: Donald Trump’s presidency: Taking stock and looking ahead

Closely guarded secret in the FBI

White House lawyer Ty Cobb declined to comment, saying in a statement that the administration was continuing to cooperate with the investigation now led by special counsel Robert Mueller “to help complete their inquiry expeditiously.”

Court documents unsealed two months ago show that in April 2016 Papadopoulos met with Joseph Mifsud, a professor in London who told him about Russia’s cache of emails — before the Democratic National Committee became aware of the intrusion into its email systems by hackers later linked to the Russian government.

The New York Times said that once the information from the Australian diplomat had reached the agency, the FBI kept it as one of their “most closely guarded secrets,” and avoided issuing subpoenas in the run-up to the election in November 2016, for fear of disrupting the campaigns.

Former Trump campaign adviser Michael Caputo dismissed Papadopoulos as a volunteer “coffee boy” only marginal to the Trump campaign, though it has since emerged that the foreign policy aide brokered a meeting between Trump and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi before the election.

bk/se (AP, dpa)

http://www.dw.com/en/australian-diplomats-tip-led-to-trump-russia-probe-us-paper/a-41982452

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George Papadopoulos was working as an energy consultant in London when the Trump campaign named him a foreign policy adviser in early March 2016. Credit via Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

WASHINGTON — During a night of heavy drinking at an upscale London bar in May 2016, George Papadopoulos, a young foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign, made a startling revelation to Australia’s top diplomat in Britain: Russia had political dirt on Hillary Clinton.

About three weeks earlier, Mr. Papadopoulos had been told that Moscow had thousands of emails that would embarrass Mrs. Clinton, apparently stolen in an effort to try to damage her campaign.

Exactly how much Mr. Papadopoulos said that night at the Kensington Wine Rooms with the Australian, Alexander Downer, is unclear. But two months later, when leaked Democratic emails began appearing online, Australian officials passed the information about Mr. Papadopoulos to their American counterparts, according to four current and former American and foreign officials with direct knowledge of the Australians’ role.

The hacking and the revelation that a member of the Trump campaign may have had inside information about it were driving factors that led the F.B.I. to open an investigation in July 2016 into Russia’s attempts to disrupt the election and whether any of President Trump’s associates conspired.

If Mr. Papadopoulos, who pleaded guilty to lying to the F.B.I. and is now a cooperating witness, was the improbable match that set off a blaze that has consumed the first year of the Trump administration, his saga is also a tale of the Trump campaign in miniature. He was brash, boastful and underqualified, yet he exceeded expectations. And, like the campaign itself, he proved to be a tantalizing target for a Russian influence operation.

While some of Mr. Trump’s advisers have derided him as an insignificant campaign volunteer or a “coffee boy,” interviews and new documents show that he stayed influential throughout the campaign. Two months before the election, for instance, he helped arrange a New York meeting between Mr. Trump and President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi of Egypt.

Read the rest:https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/30/us/politics/how-fbi-russia-investigation-began-george-papadopoulos.html

FBI Agent, Lawyer Disparaged Trump and Supported Clinton — Then Appointed By Mueller Team To Investigate Trump, Russia Ties — Raises specter of bias in the investigation

December 13, 2017

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks during a fundraising event for Big Sister Association of Greater Boston, Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017, in Boston. (AP)

Senior FBI officials who helped probe Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign told a colleague that Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton had to win the race to the White House, the New York Times reported on Tuesday.

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Peter Strzok, a senior FBI agent, said Clinton “just has to win” in a text sent to FBI lawyer Lisa Page, the Times reported.
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The messages showed concern from Strzok and Page that a Trump presidency could politicize the FBI, the report said, citing texts turned over to Congress and obtained by the newspaper.
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Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz is investigating the texts in a probe into FBI’s handling of its investigation into Clinton’s use of a private email server for official correspondence when she was Secretary of State under former President Barack Obama, the report added.
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Strzok was removed from working on the Russia probe after media reports earlier this month suggested he had exchanged text messages that disparaged Trump and supported Clinton.
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Strzok was involved in both the Clinton email and Russia investigations.
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Republicans, including Trump, have in recent weeks ramped up their attacks on the FBI and questioned its integrity.
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Special Counsel Robert Mueller and congressional committees are investigating possible links between Donald Trump’s campaign and Russia. Russia denies meddling in the 2016 US elections.
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The FBI, the Democratic National Committee and the White House did not respond to a request for comment outside regular business hours.
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Reuters was unable to contact Peter Strzok and Lisa Page for comment.
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