Patterico's Pontifications

5/16/2017

NYT Reports On F.B.I. Memo: “I Hope You Can Let This Go”

Filed under: General — Dana @ 4:00 pm

[guest post by Dana]

From the New York Times:

President Trump asked the F.B.I. director, James B. Comey, to shut down the federal investigation into Mr. Trump’s former national security adviser, Michael T. Flynn, in an Oval Office meeting in February, according to a memo Mr. Comey wrote shortly after the meeting.

“I hope you can let this go,” the president told Mr. Comey, according to the memo.

Mr. Comey wrote the memo detailing his conversation with the president immediately after the meeting, which took place the day after Mr. Flynn resigned, according to two people who read the memo. The memo was part of a paper trail Mr. Comey created documenting what he perceived as the president’s improper efforts to influence a continuing investigation. An F.B.I. agent’s contemporaneous notes are widely held up in court as credible evidence of conversations.

Mr. Comey shared the existence of the memo with senior F.B.I. officials and close associates. The New York Times has not viewed a copy of the memo, which is unclassified, but one of Mr. Comey’s associates read parts of the memo to a Times reporter.

“I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go,” Mr. Trump told Mr. Comey, according to the memo. “He is a good guy. I hope you can let this go.”

Mr. Comey did not say anything to Mr. Trump about curtailing the investigation, only replying: “I agree he is a good guy.”

(Questions: If the memo is unclassified, why wouldn’t the Times be allowed to see it? Was it offered, did they decline? More importantly, why wouldn’t the Times demand to see it to confirm its existence? And why wouldn’t the F.B.I. officials want the paper of record to view it to corroborate the F.B.I.’s version? Wouldn’t that only lend credence to their story, given that there were only two people in the room at the time – Comey and Trump? Moreover, if we are uncomfortable with media relying on anonymous sources, shouldn’t we be even more so when the issue involves an unseen memo of significant importance? Someone enlighten me.)

The White House released a statement pushing back on the report:

“While the president has repeatedly expressed his view that General Flynn is a decent man who served and protected our country, the president has never asked Mr. Comey or anyone else to end any investigation, including any investigation involving General Flynn,” the statement said. “The president has the utmost respect for our law enforcement agencies, and all investigations. This is not a truthful or accurate portrayal of the conversation between the president and Mr. Comey.”

But hey, maybe President Trump will release the tapes to which he has alluded, and if they do exist, perhaps they would bring some clarity to the matter, and either back up Comey’s memo or the President’s denial.

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)

–Dana

UPDATE BY PATTERICO: So, if this is true, is it an impeachable offense? My gut reaction is yes. Why is that wrong?

393 Responses to “NYT Reports On F.B.I. Memo: “I Hope You Can Let This Go””

  1. This is exhausting.

    Dana (023079)

  2. I’m glad he’s fired, but this is messy since the firing. An example of how to not do it.

    MeHappy (21ea5d)

  3. Good gosh! This is not an order a Boss gives directly to a caporegime. He uses a cut-out, either the Underboss or the Consigliere.

    nk (dbc370)

  4. Trump Pron!

    It takes a special kind of stupid to turn the New York Times and Washington Post into the journalistic truth equivalent of Penthouse Forum.

    Steven Malynn (4c1400)

  5. comey and the new york times together have the integrity of a thai tranny hooker what’s behind on the rent

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  6. And here we go. It’s well-known that Trump’s own lawyers will not meet with him one-on-one because Trump has a habit of “misremembering” what was said or agreed to if it’s just his word against yours – and Trump’s already set up the story that Comey’s a liar and can’t be trusted with that tweet about how Comey better hope there’s no tape of what was said before he goes leaking to the press. Trump’s the one worried there might be a tape, but he knows if he pre-emptively accuses Comey of lying it puts Comey on the defensive. If Comey was stupid enough to meet with Trump one-on-one without recording the meeting he deserved to get fired for that alone. Heck, the FBI itself doesn’t record interviews just so that their notes become the official record and there’s nobody to say otherwise, and the head of the FBI let Trump use the same trap on him?

    Jerryskids (3308c1)

  7. you can tell how bogus this is by how predictably on cue meghan mccain’s disgusting coward of a daddy is burbling his assigned lines

    “The reports that the president shared sensitive intelligence with Russian officials are deeply disturbing,” said the Arizona senator, who is notably hawkish on Russia.

    “Reports that this information was provided by a US ally and shared without its knowledge sends a troubling signal to America’s allies and partners around the world and may impair their willingness to share intelligence with us in the future.”

    lol

    the inane babblings of a filthy torture victim

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  8. Captain!

    Is that the typhoon on the horizon?

    “Make all preparations for sailing! Make all preparations for heavy weather!” – “The Caine Mutiny” 1954

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  9. measure twice cut once

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  10. President Trump should pardon Flynn.

    mg (31009b)

  11. Hey – look what I found – a fresh memo – that stinks

    mg (31009b)

  12. @10. President Trump should have a Coke and a smile:

    =burp= “Pardon me.”

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  13. What happened to Comey’s dignified departure memo? It was only days ago he said no one should question his dismissal, wasn’t it?

    crazy (d3b449)

  14. “You cannot attack the stellar reporters of CNN!”, she exclaimed.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  15. Crazy – at the moment it’s not clear if Comey *today* had anything to do with this. He wrote the memo in February, and poking around online suggests that he has long had a habit of writing such memos (one of them came up, for example, in the Valerie Plame investigation). He circulated the memo to some friends inside the FBI *then*, and one of those friends leaked it to the NYT.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  16. No-trumper hysteria about to reach max speed.

    mg (31009b)

  17. This is someone who determined no one wld ever prosecute red queen, who accepted a phony dossier and a deeply flawed third-party contractor as evidence

    narciso (ae786b)

  18. I’m no lawyer, but I would expect the defense would be there’s a difference between hoping Comey can let it go and ordering him to do it.

    IF it happened. And what do you have when Comey didn’t advise the DOJ that it had happened? A hole load of crap.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  19. I can tell you where Trump went wrong. (Besides misestimating how compromised and malleable Comey was.) When he tried to get Comey to do for Flynn what he had done for Hillary in July.

    Trump is no Loretta Lynch. A guy like Comey is not going to let another guy push him around. He is an alpha male and his reflex will be to push back. But he will be putty in the hands of a plump, motherly, sweet-faced woman. He just won’t be able to say no. But I don’t think that Trump even has any women like that around.

    nk (dbc370)

  20. “As Yogi Bear says, too much of a coincidence to be a coincidence.”

    — Nancy Pelosi

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  21. I’m still wondering how you can investigate Wikileaks describing a vile ugly corrupt Hillary Campaign in excruciatingly exact details without presenting the Seth Rich laptop for inspection?

    Where’s the laptop Jimmy?

    papertiger (c8116c)

  22. So the fbi cleared Flynn on January 24th? Why would trump be asking two weeks later about this.

    narciso (ae786b)

  23. Cruz’s dad took it?

    nk (dbc370)

  24. President Trump should pardon Flynn.

    I doubt he will need to. I think this is more anti-Trump hysteria on the left and a touch of it here.

    The whole story is that Flynn “lied” to Pence. I’m not at all sure that is true. Even if he did, that is not a crime.

    This is just part of the cold civil war that is going on between the bureaucracy/media/Democrats and the rest of us.

    Mike K (f469ea)

  25. The innuendo, as we have come to understand, serves their interests more than the actual and complete evidence. People will speculate and infer meaning to coincide and confirm their expectations. Then it’s another round and round until the Asses bray again. The baby hunt will continue.

    n.n (4df49c)

  26. Just more stuff the more gullible among us will eventually have to walk back. Me? I want no part of this mindless nonsense, and F**K the media in their pie holes, the passive-aggressive little sissies.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  27. yes yes in their pie holes

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  28. Yes I went to watch guardians 2, in some ways more plausible than the current news although Kurt russell’ s 1980 look was unpossible.

    narciso (ae786b)

  29. UPDATE BY PATTERICO: So, if this is true, is it an impeachable offense? My gut reaction is yes. Why is that wrong?

    Patterico (115b1f)

  30. P. Bump
    lmao

    mg (31009b)

  31. Listening to Jake Tapper on Anderson Cooper’s CNN show tonight — Tapper acting as reporter, not host or co-anchor or panelist — it’s very, very obvious that his confidential source is Comey himself.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  32. Not impeachable because…
    1) Comey did not report it to the DOJ
    2) McCabe testified under oath there was no impediment to the investigation
    3) there’s a difference between expressing hope that Comey can let it go and ordering him to do it

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  33. @30. Dershowitz keeps whining it’s all a matter of “tone.” But then, he’s on the teevee which makes for great entertainment.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  34. @ Patrick (#29), re your question of “Why is that wrong?,” at this point I’m still curious exactly why you think it — i.e., that if the NY Times story quoted above is true, Trump has committed an impeachable offense — is right.

    It’s not immediately obvious to me that this evidence could survive an early-stage defense motion to dismiss on an obstruction of justice count. “See your way clear to” in particular sounds to me like a direct quote, so for purposes of this discussion let’s assume that Comey will so testify and the prosecution for obstruction of justice would so allege. That’s not a threat of firing or other retaliation; that’s not a promise of a bribe or promotion. It’s literally aspirational. It does come from Comey’s boss, who also, coincidentally, has unchallengeable constitutional power to pardon Flynn. Even if you got a jury to ignore the lack of further proof and convict on that “see your way clear” statement alone, I don’t think it could stand up on appeal to a “no-evidence” challenge.

    I’m not suggesting this was in any way proper, if true. But neither am I yet seeing Watergate or Monicagate levels of official obstruction from this one conversation, even taking into account the entire context (including election-related criticisms of Comey). How exactly would the language in the indictment for the “high crime [or] misdemeanor” read?

    Beldar (fa637a)

  35. @32. You noticed that, too. He came awfully close to letting that slip a few times, too.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  36. Or the article of impeachment.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  37. Why is it not impeachable? Because it is a G-D house of cards. One lie built upon two half-truths after another and another. There is nothing of any substance in any of the speculation about Russia.

    There was whole more undue influence in the decision to not prosecute Hillary.

    Mike s (b66709)

  38. Cruz’s dad took it?
    nk (dbc370) — 5/16/2017 @ 5:59 pm

    Cruz’s great grandfather suicide-bombed the USS Maine.

    No. Really.

    It’s why I hate him.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  39. I guess if you can proved a phony dossier and a similar bogus dhs finding you think you can get away with anything

    https://mobile.twitter.com/ThomasWictor/status/864622486763085824?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Etweet

    narciso (ae786b)

  40. @ Mike K,

    I think this is more anti-Trump hysteria on the left and a touch of it here.

    Can you point to an exampled of “the hysteria” here?

    Dana (023079)

  41. @ Col H, who wrote (#18):

    And what do you have when Comey didn’t advise the DOJ that it had happened?

    This is a good question that I’ve heard many people ask. I’ll offer you my speculation:

    Everyone at this level in Washington surely knows and is constantly reminded of their job vulnerability. Comey has been in law enforcement for decades now, always subject to being fired, and he has a track record of being very self-righteous and prickly, unctuously so, at any challenge to him — hence his compulsive need to keep talking to the American public about Hillary’s emails.

    I would be astonished if he isn’t about 20 times more experienced in writing “cover-my-ass” memos than anyone in the Trump White House, which has basically blundered now into almost every mistake an employer can make in handling a high-level personnel matter.

    So my guess is that tucked away in Comey’s cover-my-ass memo is his best explanation, pre-spun in anticipation of you and others asking that exact question someday.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  42. @32. In fact, Tapper said a/my “source close to Comey’ so many times and was so resolute on the validity of his “source” you got the impression they were sharing pajamas.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  43. Col. @33 sums it all up.

    Someone at the music forum I belong to suggested that what Trump ought to be wary of are criminal investigations of his business dealings, and those of his kids. Admittedly the suggestion came from someone who would love to see Trump driven from office, but in the hands of an imaginative prosecutor, who knows what might rise from the debris of Trump U.?

    kishnevi (4db2c4)

  44. If he were really cunning, for example, the memo might conclude:

    I am highly troubled by this deeply inappropriate, if unsuccessful, by the POTUS acting in his official capacity to attempt to compromise an ongoing federal criminal investigation. However, obstruction of justice is a crime of specific criminal intent that typically can only be deduced after the fact from a pattern of circumstantial evidence over time. Perhaps the POTUS lacks sufficient intent; in any event, there is not, as of now, sufficient circumstantial evidence to oblige me to make an official report beyond this internal memorandum to my files. I will certainly be alert to future developments, though, which might further evidence the sort of “guilty mind” that would be necessary to prove obstruction of justice.

    This would, of course, fairly drip with irony, given Comey’s public statements about Hillary and proof of her criminal intent, of course. But it would be a pretty good come-back to the question you ask, Col. H.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  45. Not impeachable because in the context of speaking to Mr. Comey, Trump knew his hope couldn’t rise to the level of “intent” required in all cases that have come before the esteemed former FBI director. In particular, that standard requires a videotaped confession by perpetrator admitting to intent in front of the witnesses, plus an MRI brain scan certified by a Nobel prize winner in neurology and psychology confirming the intent was subjectively felt. At least that’s the HRC standard.

    Proud Prolifer (51f225)

  46. @ Patrick (#29), re your question of “Why is that wrong?,” at this point I’m still curious exactly why you think it — i.e., that if the NY Times story quoted above is true, Trump has committed an impeachable offense — is right.

    Like I say: it was a gut reaction. To be more accurate, it was an unresearched gut reaction made by someone who is engaged in a multi-week trial and has not had time to keep up with the news or research the details of obstruction of justice. I just ran across this link which might be worth a read. But again, my gut is that we’re not just talking about the firing, and we’re not just talking about the admission that he had the Russia investigation on his mind when he made the decision to fire Comey, and we’re not just talking about a statement by a President to an FBI Director saying “I hope you let this go” — but instead, we’re talking about all three things together.

    And when you put them all together, it feels like obstruction of justice to me. But this is as tentative an unresearched as an opinion can get, under the circumstances.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  47. I am highly troubled by this deeply inappropriate, if unsuccessful, by the POTUS acting in his official capacity to attempt to compromise an ongoing federal criminal investigation. However, obstruction of justice is a crime of specific criminal intent that typically can only be deduced after the fact from a pattern of circumstantial evidence over time. Perhaps the POTUS lacks sufficient intent; in any event, there is not, as of now, sufficient circumstantial evidence to oblige me to make an official report beyond this internal memorandum to my files. I will certainly be alert to future developments, though, which might further evidence the sort of “guilty mind” that would be necessary to prove obstruction of justice.

    No reasonable prosecutor would file charges!!!

    Patterico (115b1f)

  48. Col H also argues (#33):

    Not impeachable because…
    1) Comey did not report it to the DOJ
    2) McCabe testified under oath there was no impediment to the investigation
    3) there’s a difference between expressing hope that Comey can let it go and ordering him to do it

    I think I agree with your third point, but not the first two. He can probably explain his failure to report, given the timeline. And I definitely disagree with your #2 point: The fact that his attempt was unsuccessful does not automatically mean that there was no obstruction of justice. It nevertheless is a relevant factor in the prosecutor’s charging discretion. But recall that Scooter Libby was convicted of obstruction of justice and false statements even though no one was charged with any crime from the underlying investigation.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  49. What does it mean for something to be “an impeachable offense”?

    No, really.

    The constitution uses a notoriously vague phrase, “high crimes and misdemeanors”. The constitution does NOT give the courts the authority to hear an appeal from conviction by the Senate.

    So … as far as I can tell, “high crimes and misdemeanors”, *in practice*, means anything that 51% of the House and 67% of the Senate want it to mean.

    It’s not a *legal* question. It’s a *political* question.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  50. Yes an unscrupulous prosecutor and a corrupt judge can wreak great damage.

    narciso (ae786b)

  51. “Dear Diary,

    I try to remind myself that there are other people out there that have it worse, but I’m starting to wonder if that’s true. I seriously can’t imagine a life or job harder than mine. It’s hard living in a world when you know you’re smarter than everyone around you. It’s okay though. I’m confident that one day the world will recognize my genius.

    Yours truly,

    James”

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  52. It’s a political question where people clothe themselves in legalities to justify their political positions.

    There is a precedent that obstruction of justice is an impeachable offense. I remember this. It happened in my lifetime.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  53. @ Patrick (#48), yes, exactly. “No reasonable prosecutor would have charged then, based just on that,” he’ll say, “but my firing was the additional circumstantial evidence needed to establish the criminal intent.”

    Beldar (fa637a)

  54. 51 – No truer words have been written, narciso.

    mg (31009b)

  55. Would it be obstruction of justice for Trump to send Comey a letter saying: “I told you not to investigate Flynn, but you did, so you’re fired”?

    If so, how far off of that are we? If Trump said he hoped Comey would let it go, and Comey did not, and then Trump fired Comey, and later explained: “when I decided to just do it [fire Comey], I said to myself, I said, you know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story.” How different is that?

    Patterico (115b1f)

  56. @ Patrick (#48), yes, exactly. “No reasonable prosecutor would have charged then, based just on that,” he’ll say, “but my firing was the additional circumstantial evidence needed to establish the criminal intent.”

    This is one way of putting what I am saying, yes.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  57. Washington D.C. Police offer $25K for information leading to the solving of a murder automatically, everytime.

    Julian Assange offered an additional $20 thousand for information concerning the murder of Seth Rich.

    Republican lobbyist Jack Burkman offered another $105K, bumping the total up to $150K.

    The Clinton Campaign used the Rich murder as a tool in a speech on gun control.

    The DNC named a bike rack outside their D.C. office the Seth Rich bike rack.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  58. 56… Yeah, perhaps it would… if Comey hadn’t acted the jackass and given his disturbingly histrionic testimony in front of congress a week or so before.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  59. You can consider fits and Walton, whoever handled Conrad black’ s case ted Stevens, ronnie eagle’s ahab routine against delay.

    narciso (ae786b)

  60. The entire thing might not stink so bad if Comey hadn’t looked the other way so often during the Obama years…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  61. Comey has a friend read the memo like a mean girl. “Alpha male” my ass.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  62. But if animus can considered pretext in lieu of law, why can’t it serve as basis for indictment

    narciso (ae786b)

  63. Do we know he didn’t report it to DoJ?

    Details of Comey’s notes have been shared with a very small circle of people at the FBI and Justice Department, these people said.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/notes-made-by-former-fbi-director-comey-say-trump-pressured-him-to-end-flynn-probe/2017/05/16/52351a38-3a80-11e7-9e48-c4f199710b69_story.html?utm_term=.6543f3e89cc4

    What we don’t know (yet) is when.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  64. Why would Trump stick his neck out for Flynn? Just because he’s a decent man? Or because Flynn might take others with him?

    nk (dbc370)

  65. The key would be Trump’s specific intent. And yes, the fact that there have been authorized published statements of his intent, and statements by him of his intent, that are all inconsistent with one another is indeed circumstantial evidence that his real intention in firing Comey was not the promotion of good constitutional government but instead to impede an investigation for improper purposes.

    There’s thus a better argument that the firing last week was an obstruction of justice than that Trump’s alleged statements to Comey last spring were an obstruction of justice — more context, better circumstantial evidence.

    For reference, here are the obstruction of justice particulars in Article II of the Articles of Impeachment as passed by the House:

    In his conduct while President of the United States, William Jefferson Clinton, in violation of his constitutional oath faithfully to execute the office of President of the United States and, to the best of his ability, preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States, and in violation of his constitutional duty to take care that the laws be faithfully executed, has prevented, obstructed, and impeded the administration of justice, and has to that end engaged personally, and through his subordinates and agents, in a course of conduct or scheme designed to delay, impede, cover up, and conceal the existence of evidence and testimony related to a Federal civil rights action brought against him in a duly instituted judicial proceeding.

    The means used to implement this course of conduct or scheme included one or more of the following acts:

    (1) On or about December 17, 1997, William Jefferson Clinton corruptly encouraged a witness in a Federal civil rights action brought against him to execute a sworn affidavit in that proceeding that he knew to be perjurious, false and misleading.

    (2) On or about December 17, 1997, William Jefferson Clinton corruptly encouraged a witness in a Federal civil rights action brought against him to give perjurious, false and misleading testimony if and when called to testify personally in that proceeding.

    (3) On or about December 28, 1997, William Jefferson Clinton corruptly engaged in, encouraged, or supported a scheme to conceal evidence that had been subpoenaed in a Federal civil rights action brought against him.

    (4) Beginning on or about December 7, 1997, and continuing through and including January 14, 1998, William Jefferson Clinton intensified and succeeded in an effort to secure job assistance to a witness in a Federal civil rights action brought against him in order to corruptly prevent the truthful testimony of that witness in that proceeding at a time when the truthful testimony of that witness would have been harmful to him.

    (5) On January 17, 1998, at his deposition in a Federal civil rights action brought against him, William Jefferson Clinton corruptly allowed his attorney to make false and misleading statements to a Federal judge characterizing an affidavit, in order to prevent questioning deemed relevant by the judge. Such false and misleading statements were subsequently acknowledged by his attorney in a communication to that judge.

    (6) On or about January 18 and January 20, 21, 1998, William Jefferson Clinton related a false and misleading account of events relevant to a Federal civil rights action brought against him to a potential witness in that proceeding, in order to corruptly influence the testimony of that witness.

    (7) On or about January 21, 23, and 26, 1998, William Jefferson Clinton made false and misleading statements to potential witnesses in a Federal grand jury proceeding in order to corruptly influence the testimony of those witnesses. The false and misleading statements made by William Jefferson Clinton were repeated by the witnesses to the grand jury, causing the grand jury to receive false and misleading information.

    In all of this, William Jefferson Clinton has undermined the integrity of his office, has brought disrepute on the Presidency, has betrayed his trust as President, and has acted in a manner subversive of the rule of law and justice, to the manifest injury of the people of the United States.

    Both in this count and in Article I (perjury), the House was quite specific in alleging the “high crime [or] misdemeanor” in language that would, indeed, have stood up in a criminal indictment. Before you can begin to dream about having a whiff of a hope that a Republican House and Senate are going to impeach a Republican POTUS, you need to be able to put together a more compelling specification of the crime than anything the Left has yet attempted.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  66. “This would, of course, fairly drip with irony, given Comey’s public statements about Hillary and proof of her criminal intent, of course. But it would be a pretty good come-back to the question you ask, Col. H.”

    Beldar (fa637a) — 5/16/2017 @ 6:33 pm

    I think Comey is a self-serving, narcissistic incompetent. Trump’s behavior is rash and buffoonish, but he is benign compared to the entrenched deep state and their surrogate operatives in the media. I condemn their plotting, their dishonesty and sincerely hope they get much worse than what they try to dish out.

    Beldar (fa637a) — 5/16/2017 @ 6:33 pm

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  67. Sweet jaysus, if it isn’t CNN, it’s the WaPo and if it isn’t the WaPo, it’s the NYT.

    I don’t believe a word they write or say.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  68. Drip……drip

    Dana Bash now reporting Congressional Rs debating between supporting independent prosecutor or independent commission. Major development.

    Spartacvs (595d8e)

  69. Huh? I don’t see that second comment.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  70. Col H. made an editing error in #68 above. He was quoting an earlier comment from me, but then he was giving his own views in the last paragraph and accidentally duplicated the attribution line from my earlier quote. He wasn’t putting words in my mouth. 😀

    Beldar (fa637a)

  71. Everyday I despise republicans in office more and more.
    Not enough bad things can happen to the GOP. For these hacks to take sides with the media and the dems is appalling.

    mg (31009b)

  72. It seems nothing short of a insurrection to drag these polecats out on the street will make them pay attention

    narciso (ae786b)

  73. So how will the media savvy Trump tweet this fire out…

    “Road trip.” – ‘Animal House’ 1978

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  74. 68… Lol, Beldar. My mad cut and paste skillz!

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  75. It’s mildly noteworthy that the new story of Comey’s memo emphasizes that it was not “classified.”

    That’s probably right. But it surely was “confidential.”

    From which I infer that Comey’s quite certain that Tapper has his back and that whoever’s looking into improper leaking isn’t going to be jumping through the hoops to force Tapper to give up his source.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  76. all those years of law school out the window with one misquote!

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  77. The rizzotto tray group always has room for an extra chair

    https://pjmedia.com/instapundit/265084/#respond

    narciso (ae786b)

  78. DCSCA, imagine that.

    http://www.businessinsider.com/ships-get-supplies-in-middle-of-nowhere-2014-3

    A black guy with gun. And racist me I didn’t worry about it.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=40qeK5BZy-w

    UNREP WESTPAC ’06-’07 on the way home!

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  79. So this is like those telltale intercepts that have never been published because it would be a busted flush.

    narciso (ae786b)

  80. If Comey kept book on Trump, he must have many memos on Obama and Lynch. Congress should get all the Comey memos.

    AZ Bob (f7a491)

  81. Click on the links. A beautiful day. On the other hand a bad day.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=b7pRfix_sNg

    US Navy Ship loses anchor and chain

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  82. And Obama and Holder

    mg (31009b)

  83. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IBBoQzPq69k

    TOP Ships Anchor Drop Failure 2017

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  84. Run away!

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  85. Dana Perino, in introducing Bret Baier tonight for a brief segment in “The Five” on Fox News, asked him if he’d heard anything to the effect that Sessions and Rosenstein had read Comey’s memo of the February 14 meeting with Trump before Rosenstein wrote his memo evaluating Comey last week.

    Baier didn’t respond to that part of her intro one way or another, and I haven’t heard it come back up.

    However, I’ve been wondering about whether it really was accidental that Comey was out of town, across the country, when he was fired. Some executive terminations are deliberately timed for such occasions, despite the hard feelings and bad optics it engenders, when the employer wants to clean out the ex-employee’s office, computers, files, etc.

    Someone will likely ask Rosenstein about this when he testifies before the Senate on Thursday.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  86. Why I live in North Texas, about as far away I can get from the ocean.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vq4pvsAJ5KE

    Warship vs Big Waves-2

    That’s not a USN man-o-war, BTW.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  87. Was fan dancer Sally one of those, she’s been acting uncharacteristically quiet, then again she may just have a busted flush as well.

    narciso (ae786b)

  88. “I hope you can let this go,”

    What’s this?

    The only invstigationn that Donald Trump knew of Michael Flynn at the time was of Michael Flynn lying about whether the subject of sanctions came up in the conversation he had with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.

    Donald Trump had the transcript – there was no real problem with what he said vs a vs the Logan Act and such issues. He didn’t step out of bounds. He might even have done some good. Of course Flynn was cautious in what he said because he was going rogue.

    Trump forgave him and publicly said that if Flynn had asked he would told him to say what he said (more plausible is agreed to that).

    But the problem was, he might have lied, not just to Mike Pence, but to the FBI. Trump was saying he hoped the FBI Director could see his way through to letting that slide. Assuming this memo is authentic.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  89. A picture too beautiful not to share.

    http://farm6.staticflickr.com/5014/5451830256_30c8ce19bb_z.jpg

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  90. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fndZpGGuN9c

    Ray Charles – What A Wonderful World

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  91. This easily rises to an impeachable offense. The standard is not set out constitutionally. Whatever the standard may be, it is nowhere near “beyond a reasonable doubt.” However, I’d be surprised if the GOPe would really want DJT out now that he is virtually castrated (assuming the memo exists as reported). I know for certain the Dems do not want a placeholder DJT to go away as the prime villain in the next election.

    Let’s just see if the Dems begin to tone down their rhetoric now that more than a few GOP pols are beginning to turn.

    Ed from SFV (3400a5)

  92. Generals and presidents do not ever suggest. Everything is regarded as an order.

    Ed from SFV (3400a5)

  93. I expect CNN and the NYT to jointly report tomorrow that Trump, while composing his 4 a.m. tweets, is walking the halls of the White House and delivering speeches to the portraits of various previous Presidents. Expect some Al Haig references.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  94. Stick a fork in him:

    A senior official in the Trump administration, who previously worked on the president’s campaign, offered a candid and brief assessment of the fallout from that string of bad press: “I don’t see how Trump isn’t completely fucked.”

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2017/05/16/trump-officials-on-comey-memo-dont-see-how-trump-isnt-completely-fcked

    Spartacvs (2db708)

  95. What part of this do you miss, this isn’t about conventional politics. This is the unelected and unaccountable blackguards of one administration, ‘none care cAll it treason, or treason doth prosper’ the offenses are like the opening to the declaration.

    narciso (ae786b)

  96. @ Ed from SFV, who said (#97):

    Let’s just see if the Dems begin to tone down their rhetoric now that more than a few GOP pols are beginning to turn.

    I don’t think they’re capable, individually or as a group, of toning down their rhetoric. Their base won’t let them. Schumer surely knew, for instance, that it was a strategically catastrophic decision to try to filibuster Gorsuch, as moderate and mainstream a SCOTUS nominee as any GOP POTUS is going to propose and therefore someone around whom McConnell could readily enforce party discipline in going nuclear. It was the wrong time and wrong nominee to have that fight. But Schumer and other Dems in the Senate simply could not be seen to turn the knobs below 11, lest the tottering skeleton of the Democratic Party collapse altogether.

    In fact, Trump and GOP leaders on the Hill ought to be looking for ways to drive Dems further out onto more tenuous limbs, a la the Gorsuch victory, by taking advantage of this reflexive and unvarying hyper-partisanship across the board.

    Instead, Trump is feeding the Dems their dream narrative, whether through ineptitude (which I still think most likely) or worse (which is admittedly consistent with the way he’s acting).

    Beldar (fa637a)

  97. Beldar,

    In all this hypothesizing, at what point will the existence of the memo need to be confirmed and verified, and by whom?

    Also, to any commenters, how do you think this playing out to the general makes, not necessarily just. Trump supporter, but people who may not follow these things closely, are busy living their lived, or have already written off mainstream news?

    Dana (023079)

  98. Ok, Ed. Then where were you?

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  99. @ Dana (#102), who asked:

    In all this hypothesizing, at what point will the existence of the memo need to be confirmed and verified, and by whom?

    Jason Chaffetz is already being quoted as saying he’s considering subpoenaing the memo and has his “subpoena pen” ready. I think the exact timing will depend on whether Comey distributed back-up/confirmation copies of the memo to sources who can plausibly and deniably leak it because they’re unlikely to be asked to testify themselves.

    Or there may be copies of it left behind in the FBI’s official files — Comey, like other government employees and more than most, probably, is under heavy restrictions regarding what records he could duplicate or store off-site, and is responsible for ensuring that all official memoranda (which this surely was, and a confidential one even if not classified) are in the government’s possession when he departs. If so, then perhaps Acting Director Andrew McCabe will release it to Congress, confidentially or otherwise, and assuredly only after consultation with and approval from the DoJ — surely Deputy AG Rosenstein.

    It wouldn’t surprise me if it’s in the public domain, then, before the week’s out, possibly in connection with Rosenstein’s Senate testimony, which is shaping up to be … rather important.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  100. Dana, there were like 35 or 40 smoking guns under Obama. And they couldn’t give a f***. But now I’m supposed to care about Trump. Now, all of a sudden, propriety matters. I don’t care. I’m not giving them the scalp they demand.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  101. It won’t matter as soon as a Republican is no longer President. You know it and I know it.

    I am having difficulty, Dana, understanding your dedication to losing.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  102. I don’t like Trump. But screw the Democrats.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  103. Trump losing is not conservatives losing. We lost the second the GOP nominated him. Carrying water for Trump is choosing to lose, because he opposes conservatism, not only on bumper sticker politics, but in the essential concepts of equality before the law, minimal interference, transparency, and ordered liberty.

    Binary choice: Pence or Trump. I’m with Pence.

    Dustin (ba94b2)

  104. Now there is a call for Comey’s memo on Bill Clinton meeting with Loretta Lynch in PHX.

    AZ Bob (f7a491)

  105. The key word in those obstruction of justice counts above (#67) from Article II of Clinton’s Articles of Impeachment, and likewise in the somewhat less specific articles of impeachment voted out of the House Judiciary Committee during Watergate (but never taken up by the full House, due to Nixon’s resignation), is corrupt.

    We’ve all refreshed our educations recently about criminal statutes that require no intent at all, statutes that require a generalized intent, and statutes that require specific intent. Under one of the national security statutes under which Hillary should have been prosecuted, intent is irrelevant because the statute in explicitly based on a gross-negligence standard. In another, her generalized intent to “transmit” something classified to an unauthorized recipient was sufficient, even if she didn’t realize doing so would break the law or be improper. And under yet other statutes, including those relating to espionage, a successful prosecution would have had to show a very high degree of specific criminal intent to damage national security.

    Well, obstruction of justice is like that last category of national security statutes. Through that word “corrupt,” the statutes get directly to the question of personal, venal motivation. But such specific intentions can only be proven, absent a confession, by circumstantial evidence, so you need a really strong set of circumstantial evidence of intent, supported by really strong evidence of motive, which need not be circumstantial at all.

    With Clinton, evidence of motive was right there on Monica’s blue dress. That physical evidence not only proved Clinton a perjurer, but explained everything else he did to try to cover up and impede, because it tied directly and obviously to him.

    But the Dems don’t yet have — even in their most fevered fantasies — anything remotely as concrete and damning as Monica’s blue dress. And without it, the rest of the case against Clinton would likely have never have been developed.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  106. Dana:

    (Questions: If the memo is unclassified, why wouldn’t the Times be allowed to see it?

    the Times also wasn’t allowed to, or able, to see the email that James Comey wrote to members of the FBI the day after he was fired, and had it read to it over the phone, although both CNN and the Wall street Journal obtained a copy.

    Maybe the problem is that the leaker might leave traces. Maybe the NYT reporter is in New York, and the CNN and WSJ reporters were in Washington and coud meet their souurce in person. Anywaqy it has something to do with the leaker.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  107. Now there is a call for Comey’s memo on Bill Clinton meeting with Loretta Lynch in PHX.

    AZ Bob (f7a491) — 5/16/2017 @ 9:44 pm

    You know there probably is one, and it’s probably juicy.

    I’m just curious if Comey shared these with friends as some sort of insurance policy, or if he’s actively leaking them through an intermediary.

    Let’s just get it out on the table, all of it, about how both parties are fundamentally weak, fundamentally screwed up, and we need some reforms.

    Dustin (ba94b2)

  108. only replying: “I agree he [Mike Flynn] is a good guy.”

    That wasn’t a safe thing for Comey to agree to.

    There’s a very very big question about that.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  109. Of course Trump said also that the close to dictator of China is a good guy, too. And even if he really wanted to help with North Korea, that’s not true.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  110. I heard or read the other day that Comey didn’t want to testify in closed session, but was willing to testify in public. I’d certainly like to hear what he has to say. (Congressional committees don’t like hearing from witnesses in public without prior private interviews – that may be slowing things down.)

    That sounds like Comey may have some sort of surprise in mind.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  111. @ Steve57,

    I am having difficulty, Dana, understanding your dedication to losing.

    How am I dedicated to losing? I’m not jumping to any conclusions but am trying to understand what’s happening here. None of us knows for sure. Also, I’m not compelled to give anyone the benefit of the doubt, although you might be.

    Dana (023079)

  112. In federal court, jury instructions would say that an “act is ‘corruptly’ done if it is done intentionally with an unlawful purpose.” The verdict form on a typical obstruction of justice count might read:

    The defendant is charged in [Count _______ of] the indictment with obstruction of justice in violation of Section 1503 of Title 18 of the United States Code. In order for the defendant to be found guilty of that charge, the government must prove each of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

    First, the defendant influenced, obstructed, or impeded, or tried to influence, obstruct, or impede the due administration of justice; and

    Second, the defendant acted corruptly, or by threats or force, or by any threatening communication, with the intent to obstruct justice.

    The government need not prove that the defendant’s sole or even primary intention was to obstruct justice so long as the government proves beyond a reasonable doubt that one of the defendant’s intentions was to obstruct justice. The defendant’s intention to obstruct justice must be substantial.

    That’s why “obstruction of justice” is all about specific criminal intent.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  113. narciso @100.

    I think the quotation or poem goes something like this:

    Treason doth never prosper.
    What’s the reason?
    Because if treason prosper
    None dare call it reason.

    This poem dates from the time when it was treason to want to replace the king. But it had happened a few times. And most notably with King Charles I.

    In the U.S. constitution treason is limited to levying War against the United States, or adhering to its enemies, giving them aid and comfort, and, on top of that, testimony of two witnesses to the same overt zct is needed, or confession in open court. They’d have probably have eliminated the concept altogeher if they thought it would fly, but if they had, people would assert it.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  114. How J. Edgar Hoover-like of Comey to come up with a document he can blackmail Trump with. And he brought in his cronies as part of his cabal.

    A square shooter would have immediately spoken up, but that’s not who Comey is.

    Trump’s intuition about Comey was right on the money.

    Let’s see the entire diary of which this letter is allegedly a part.

    ThOR (c9324e)

  115. http://auto.howstuffworks.com/the-grasshopper-custom-car.htm

    Johnny Law and the 53

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jbzjC0O3H9k

    I recentlyh read Don Stratton’s book, “All the Gallant men.”

    About the heroes who had ships like the Oklahoma shot out from underneath them. But damn. They put up a fight.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  116. Here’s a question. Are there other letters in the diary? On who else did he have blackmail material?

    ThOR (c9324e)

  117. How J. Edgar Hoover-like of Comey to come up with a document he can blackmail Trump with. And he brought in his cronies as part of his cabal.

    A square shooter would have immediately spoken up, but that’s not who Comey is.

    Trump’s intuition about Comey was right on the money.

    Let’s see the entire diary of which this letter is allegedly a part.

    ThOR (c9324e) — 5/16/2017 @ 10:12 pm

    I owe you an apology. I really did not realize you were joking around until that comment. Very good!

    Dustin (ba94b2)

  118. I meant tt say Arizona. Feel free to give me all kinds of shii, uhh nonsense.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  119. Beldar @99.

    Trump, while composing his 4 a.m. tweets,

    They’re really 7 a,.m. tweets.

    His account, or maybe Twitter itself, like Patterico, seems to be on Pacific time. .

    Twitter’s headquarters is at 1355 Market Street in San Francisco, California.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  120. What I am trying to say, Dana, is that since my enemies are committed to fighting unfairly I don’t feel it necessary to tie my hands.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  121. Second, the defendant acted corruptly, or by threats or force, or by any threatening communication, with the intent to obstruct justice.

    Does that mean lying, or even destroying or creating evidence, is not obstruction of justice?

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  122. I could have meant Oklahoma.

    Four hundred and twenty nine men were killed on the USS Oklahoma on December 7 1941.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  123. http://www.omaha.com/news/military/hansen-donald-stratton-survived-uss-arizona-bombing-and-got-a/article_de682c03-24e3-5c21-b552-39f080ae064c.html

    Omaha World Herald Hansen: Donald Stratton survived USS Arizona bombing and got a new lease on life thanks to a man with a rope

    The man who threw Don Stratton that rope didn’t think he’d live. Then he went about his business.

    Don Stratton is, last I checked, in his nineties.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  124. Trey Gowdy tonight:

    GOWDY: Obviously want to see the memo, Obviously want to talk to Director Comey to determine how contemporaneous his recording of the conversation was. Also, importantly, not just what was said, but what did Director Comey hear? How did he take it? And that can only be done, with all due respect to the New York Times, that can only be done by looking at the memo and talking to Director Comey.

    MCCALLUM: Yeah, The New York Times in this report, does not have the memo in their hands. it was read to them over the phone. So that, in and of itself … as you point out, it’s very difficult to get the context if you can’t read the whole thing.

    GOWDY: Well if you go back to criminal procedure, which is my background, there is a doctrine called Rule of Completeness. Whenever part of the document is introduced, you got to be able to look at the entire document. Your viewers and my fellow citizens deserve to see the entire context of whatever conversation may or may not have taken place. And, quite frankly, Director Comey deserves an opportunity to come tell us how he heard it, what he heard, how pervasive it was, and how much of the conversation that segment consumed.

    Dana (023079)

  125. 75 years later, Pearl Harbor survivor recalls horrors of “burning alive”

    I signed up for this.

    Because I’m stupid.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  126. http://www.omaha.com/news/military/hansen-donald-stratton-survived-uss-arizona-bombing-and-got-a/article_de682c03-24e3-5c21-b552-39f080ae064c.html

    Hansen: Donald Stratton survived USS Arizona bombing and got a new lease on life thanks to a man with a rope

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  127. Did Gowdy read my comment at 120?

    I think it would be helpful for Gowdy to speak to Comey’s confederates and review their contemporaneous inter-communications, as well.

    ThOR (c9324e)

  128. Patterico, at 53: fair enough. The political custom is to cloak it in the appearance of legal formality.

    But I’m enough of a lawyer to be irritated by the fake legalism, even so.

    [Also, I remember the same event, and oddly enough – while I thought questioning Clinton about his sex life was unseemly and unnecessary and I didn’t actually care about it, I reluctantly endorsed the impeachment because *even if you think the questions shouldn’t be asked*, you don’t get to lie about them.]

    aphrael (3f0569)

  129. Beldar, at 101:

    > It was the wrong time and wrong nominee to have that fight.

    I spent weeks trying to convince liberals of this, and could not. Collectively they are *furious* about Garland, and unable to set their fury aside for their own political good. :{

    aphrael (3f0569)

  130. So not only are you using WaPo as a credible source, but now NYTimes. Sad.

    Joel Walbert (19982d)

  131. Dustin, at 113:

    I’m having a really difficult time with part of this. I don’t like Trump, and I think it is more likely than not that he acted to interfere with the investigation, and many other things that shore up my anti-Trump credentials. And yet: this leak, combined with the leak of the Manafort subpoena, really make it look like unelected employees of the state are deliberately manipulating the public in order to interfere with the *elected* head of state.

    That *isn’t ok*; it’s a terrible precedent to set and if it sets in as precedent, it is incredibly corrosive to our democracy.

    Which is part of why I really badly want some order imposed on the process. A special prosecutor. An independent Congressional committee. *something* that creates a process which allows this information to come forward in a legal, controlled way – because it’s *going* to come forward, it’s just a question at this point of whether it comes forward in a way which badly harms our systems and governing norms, or not.

    aphrael (3f0569)

  132. Joel Walbert – I’ve said in a conversation on the Book of Faces that it’s possible that the memo is a hoax, and that the reading of the memo to a NYTimes reporter is not “evidence”.

    That said, Fox is reporting that Rep. Chaffetz is ready to subpoena this and other memos (http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2017/05/16/chaffetz-to-seek-copies-comeys-memos-saying-have-my-subpoena-pen-ready.html), which somewhat implies that Chaffetz thinks they exist.

    aphrael (3f0569)

  133. After the Ken Starr fiasco, you want another special prosecutor? Better that it be out in the open. Impeachment is a political act, after all. Hiding behind a special counsel is asking for trouble.

    ThOR (c9324e)

  134. Steve57 – I was a volunteer for Ted in his last stand, Indiana. That’s where I was. What on earth does that have to do with the merits, or lack thereof, of my posts in here?

    Beldar – I most certainly hope the Left’s hatred of DJT, and us, causes them to overplay their hand, as they did with Gorsuch.

    Ed from SFV (3400a5)

  135. That *isn’t ok*; it’s a terrible precedent to set and if it sets in as precedent, it is incredibly corrosive to our democracy.

    Partisanship has been getting worse since Bush V Gore, and now I’m not sure people really understand what you’re saying. Most of it is driven by politics, some desperation at a system that won’t do anything about anything. But the damage will prove long lasting.

    Dustin (ba94b2)

  136. 118 days in. So here’s the drill. 18 months ’til 2018 elections which is increasingly shaping up to be a Democratic wave. If Congress wants to press on w/t GOP “agenda” while majorities are still in place the forced move to clear the decks is appointing the SP for this mess and leave the Captain on the bridge to navigate the typhoon on his own. The drama would be quite the show, too. ‘Course given his fast food diet and stress levels, we could all wake up one morning to learn the Captain’s been found face down in his piece of chocolate cream pie between two melted scoops of vanilla ice cream and we’d have a President Pence. A SP is a patriot’s fig leaf move to be sure but brings focus back to legislating. Because after the 2018 midterms, it’ll be over for’em anyway. But it’s already mid-May and with more shoes surely to drop, time’s a-wastin’.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  137. I doubt I will ever vote again, but I will go well out of my way to make darn sure no republican is ever elected again. These people don’t deserve to take air into their lungs. Pence is a joke.

    mg (31009b)

  138. One of the news talkers mentioned a time Comey had threatened to quit a political office on principle, in the context of showing how great a guy Comey is.

    The President he threatened to quit on was G,W, Bush,and the office he occupied was due to Dubya’s mistaken penchant for keeping holdovers from the Clinton admin.

    Anyhow I do the Bing search for “Comey threatens to resign”

    Here’s what I got for returns.

    Rod Rosenstein reportedly threatened to resign after James …
    businessinsider.com/rod-rosenstein-james-comey-firing-2017-5
    May 10, 2017 · Trump’s deputy attorney general reportedly threatened to resign after being painted as the mastermind behind Comey’s firing

    Rosenstein Threatened to Resign Over Comey – newsmax.com
    newsmax.com
    5 days ago
    May 11, 2017 · Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein threatened to quit after his letter was staged by the White House as the death knell to FBI Director James Comey …

    Rod Rosenstein reportedly threatened to resign after Comey …
    New York Daily News · 6 days ago
    May 11, 2017 · Rod Rosenstein reportedly considered resigning when he was cast as the person behind the recommendation to fire former FBI director James Comey.

    Deputy AG Threatened to Quit Over Comey Blame
    huffingtonpost.com/entry/rod-rosenstein-quit-comey_us_5913eb36…
    May 11, 2017 · Rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general tasked with drafting a memo to explain the removal Tuesday of FBI Director James Comey, threatened to resign …

    Rosenstein Threatened to Resign over Portrayal of Comey …
    The National Review Online
    5 days ago
    There are some jaw-dropping tick-tocks out this morning on the Comey … is stunning — Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein threatened to resign yesterday over …

    Rod Rosenstein Threatened To Resign After Comey Firing …
    dailycaller.com/2017/05/11/report-rod-rosenstein-threatened-to…
    May 11, 2017 · Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein threatened to resign after he was portrayed by the White House as the catalyst for President Trump’s decision to …

    Deputy AG Rosenstein was on the verge of resigning, upset …
    abcnews.go.com/Politics/deputy-ag-rosenstein-verge-resigning-upset…
    May 11, 2017 · Deputy AG was on the verge of resigning after WH pinned Comey firing on … Rosenstein was contemplating his resignation. … threatens to cancel press …

    Rod Rosenstein ‘threatened to resign’ over Comey memo …
    Daily Mail · 6 days ago
    Trump’s story unravels: Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein ‘threatened to resign’ after his recommendation was cited as the reason that Trump fired Comey

    DOJ official who recommended Comey’s firing threatened to …
    The Hill · 5 days ago
    Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein reportedly threatened to quit after he was cites as the reason FBI Director James Comey was fired.

    WP: Rosenstein threatened to resign – dailykos.com
    dailykos.com/…/5/10/1661116/-WP-Rosenstein-threatened-to-resign
    May 10, 2017 · Rod Rostenstein threatened to resign on Tuesday night after realizing the White House was putting former FBI Director James Comey’s dismissal on him …

    Report: Deputy Attorney General Threatened To Resign Over …
    Report: Deputy Attorney General Threatened To Resign Over Comey Firing Narrative
    wbur.org/hereandnow/2017/05/11/rod-rosenstein-comey-firing
    May 11, 2017 · The Washington Post reports that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein threatened to resign Wednesday after White House …

    Author of memo about Comey ‘threatened to resign …
    webgrio.com/news/32556-author-of-memo-about-comey-threatened…
    May 11, 2017 · Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein threatened to resign in protest over the White House citing him as the driving force behind President Donald …
    Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein threatened to resign after White …

    Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein threatened to resign after White House said he was impetus for Comey decision
    The Post and Courier · 5 days ago
    May 11, 2017 · Comey, Trump figured, was … Rosenstein threatened to resign after the narrative emerging from the White House on Tuesday …

    A.M. Links: Rosenstein Threatened to Resign Over Handling …
    reason.com/blog/2017/05/11/am-links-rosenstein-threatened-to-resign
    May 11, 2017 · Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein reportedly “threatened to resign after the narrative emerging from the White … Comey and that the president …

    Deputy AG Rosenstein Threatened To Resign Over Being …
    Uproxx
    5 days ago
    Report: Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein Threatened To Resign Over Being Blamed For Comey’s Firing

    Author of memo about Comey ‘threatened to resign’
    news2read.com › US
    Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein threatened to resign in protest over the White House citing him as the driving force behind Trump’s decision to fire James Comey.

    More Drama: WaPo Says Deputy AG Threatened To Resign …
    zerohedge.com · 5 days ago
    Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein threatened to resign after the narrative emerging from the White House on Tuesday evening cast him as a prime mover of the decision …

    DOJ official who recommended Comey’s firing threatened to …
    The Hill
    5 days ago
    Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein reportedly threatened to quit after he was cites as the reason FBI Director James Comey was fired.

    Rod Rosenstein reportedly threatened to resign after James …
    businessinsider.com/rod-rosenstein-james-comey-firing-2017-5
    May 10, 2017 · Trump’s deputy attorney general reportedly threatened to resign after being painted as the mastermind behind Comey’s firing

    Deputy AG Rosenstein denies he threatened to quit over …
    CNBC
    6 days ago
    Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein denied on Thursday that he threatened to quit over President Donald Trump’s firing of James Comey. When asked by a Sinclair …

    White House not ‘aware’ of whether Deputy Atty. General …
    Washington Examiner
    5 days ago
    A White House spokeswoman on Thursday declined to confirm or deny a report that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein threatened to resign his post after the …

    That’s what you call an orgy of malicious failure.

    Notice that CNBC got the story right a day before all the rest of the media got it wrong.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  139. Dear God,
    Please let Isis invade the homes of all republican hacks in d.c.
    Trump is not a republican. Pence is.

    mg (31009b)

  140. That search engine return reminds me of the news reports you get 15 minutes after a mall shooting.

    It has sort of a [Edit] it all… We’ve got the story we want!!!, feel to it.
    All of it based on anonymous sources. (the Wapo claimed 30 anonymous sources. THIRTY!)

    All of this latest bull[edit] it’s the same thing.

    Don’t start tossing the Republicans with the bathwater. They’ve been getting fed bull[edit] like it was momma’s cobbler.
    “You have any room for dessert honey?” no I’m stuffed. “Oh no. Here. Have some more!”

    Here’s the story you should measure the GOP by.

    WASHINGTON — A House Republican wants to see the entire memo from former FBI Director James Comey on President Trump asking him to drop the investigation of Michael Flynn, as well as any memo Comey might have composed on the infamous meeting Bill Clinton had with Obama Attorney General Loretta Lynch.

    http://dailycaller.com/2017/05/16/republican-asks-for-comey-memo-on-clinton-meeting-with-loretta-lynch/

    That’s from Texas Republican Rep. Pete Sessions >>>That’s my boy right there. Yes sir.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  141. If Comey is righteous he’ll have a memo about Clinton obstructing justice on the tarmac.

    But he isn’t. He’s a back stabbing son of a [edit] low life scum.

    You know it. I know it. Everybody knows it.

    If they say different they’re lying.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  142. True, paper tiger, but the republicans have no clue. They want to polish the babyruth in a pool.

    mg (31009b)

  143. Yeah. But them fudge-packers have a strong union.

    [jpg]

    papertiger (c8116c)

  144. 149: Thank God Gephardt never got in and Ferguson scuttled the faux blue dog dreams of Jay Nixon and Claire McCaskill. That’s how the shirt gets Brown.

    urbanleftbehind (def4d8)

  145. “It was thoughtful of the Democrats to warn us of this “fake news” phenomenon in November, as they unleashed it.”

    — Glenn Reynolds

    Colonel Haiku (d3e242)

  146. Was Comey in the plane in Phoenix with Billy and Loretta?

    nk (dbc370)

  147. The left has no scruples, we know the soon and Schumer and obama and red Quebec’s view on this, they are ravagers or necromongers but they see them as the sovereigns and elementals

    narciso (ae786b)

  148. Cause those kind of threesomes seem to be more common with Trump’s people.

    nk (dbc370)

  149. Show us some actual evidence, we used to actually wait and see, except macho hrande.

    was that about ms Delgado, the Latina wannabe version of coulter?

    narciso (ae786b)

  150. “The ‘motor of fake news is not inaccuracy. It’s malice.’”

    — Roger Kimball

    Colonel Haiku (d3e242)

  151. ‘Cry havoc and let loose the dogs of war’ yes Shakespeare had a way of putting words in the mouths of those he despised, but there is also the st. Crispin’s day speech.

    narciso (ae786b)

  152. Old man Hoover was a poker compared to what comey had at his command. But you see he had most of the new classes prejudices

    narciso (ae786b)

  153. Poker, he was schumer’s creature, so he did what he was told. He complained about trailblazer the data mining software yet headed a much greater apparat.

    narciso (ae786b)

  154. You did a kick ass Jim, both of you:

    https://mobile.twitter.com/BrianHubbs1/status/864685201519030272

    narciso (ae786b)

  155. I’m not a fan of Turley but he’s not the lying hack that Too in is:

    http://legalinsurrection.com/2017/05/professor-jonathan-turley-i-dont-think-this-makes-out-an-obstruction-case/

    SPQR (a3a747)

  156. Beldar,

    I’m not sure about the timeline. When did this meeting between Trump and Comey occur? Specifically, was it before or after Flynn stepped down as Trump’s NSA adviser?

    If after, this sounds like Trump trying to protect Flynn from investigations because he didn’t want them to hurt a “good guy.” If before, it suggests Trump was trying to protect himself and his Administration, including Flynn, from wherever the investigations led.

    DRJ (15874d)

  157. Dana (023079) — 5/16/2017 @ 10:54 pm

    MCCALLUM: Yeah, The New York Times in this report, does not have the memo in their hands. it was read to them over the phone.

    no, only part of it. https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/05/16/us/politics/james-comey-trump-flynn-russia-investigation.html?_r=0

    The New York Times has not viewed a copy of the memo, which is unclassified, but one of Mr. Comey’s associates read parts of it to a Times reporter. If they’d had the whole thing read to them, they would have had the whole thing. They could record it, too you know.

    As of this point, I don’t think anybdy has the whole memo. I haven’t read one story where the news organization made that claim. Some of them got part of it in visual form, not audio.

    None of us has the context, but we can guess. And since the claim is the memo was written the day after the meeting, it would have to pertain to the state of the investigation of Mike Flynn at that time and at that time, that probably concerned lying to the FBI about the matter of sanctions not being discussed during the telephone conversation he had with Kislyak on December 28, and how many conversations he had.

    Or at least that’s all that Donald Trump knew about at that time, and it was probably the oly allegaton that was discussed during that conversation. Quite possibly, Donald Trump didn’t want Comey to take his firing of Flynnn as an invitation to indict him for the same bit of lying.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  158. General Flynn is a stand up guy, he stood up to Obama, when he was ignoring Islamic state’s rise, because brennan assured him the caliphate was a figment, I’m sure there were byzantine counselors in the 8th century, who believed the same thing

    narciso (d1f714)

  159. people who speak truth to power, whether general Flynn, or colonel west or the huntress, are less appreciated then one might expect, yes the Turkish contract, as opposed to what Obama actually did for Erdogan, and I hold no brief for gulen, he helped turn turkey into what it is today,

    narciso (d1f714)

  160. DRJ, Flynn “resigned” Feb 13

    crazy (d3b449)

  161. GOWDY: Well if you go back to criminal procedure, which is my background, there is a doctrine called Rule of Completeness. Whenever part of the document is introduced, you got to be able to look at the entire document. Your viewers and my fellow citizens deserve to see the entire context of whatever conversation may or may not have taken place.

    And that’s exactly what we haven’t got, although all this leaking to all sorts of different outlets is creating the impression that the whole document is available to the public.

    NOBODY HAS IT!

    Except some people in the FBI, maybe.

    The context would probably make the whole matter look a lot less serious. And nk has said, but I haven’t checked out to see what news stories say, that the FBI had already closed its investigation of Michael Flynn’s statements by that point. (Trump may not have known the status of the investigation, though, and to Comey this request by the president would be just as serious whether an ongoing investigation existed or not. And also, of course that investigation could be re-opened if Mike Flynn contionued to talk to the FBI. )

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  162. and should have added Comey/Trump meeting was Feb 14

    crazy (d3b449)

  163. crazy,

    The report says the Comey-Trump meeting was in February, too. Which came first, the meeting or Flynn resigning?

    DRJ (15874d)

  164. Take field of battle, his brief on the war on terror, coauthored with ledeen, who was the gorka of his day, it wastes little time with the backslapping reassurances of podesta and gates, who in the end failed their test, speaking truth to power, in Afghanistan and Iraq,

    narciso (d1f714)

  165. Trump is that he has shown no ability to handle pRobles like this, except by changing the subject. But he can’t keep doing that. He will get crushed by the rising tide of unresolved problems, and the best he can hope for is that he becomes a lame duck.

    DRJ (15874d)

  166. pRobles can handle his own damn self!

    Colonel Haiku (d3e242)

  167. I’ll tell you another thing nobody has:

    Comey’s version of he conversation where he was supposedly asked about his loyalty. According to the New York Times, Comey made notes of that:

    Mr. Comey created similar memos — including some that are classified — about every phone call and meeting he had with the president, the two people said.

    Just this president, or the previous president, too? What about the Attorney General, or any superior?

    Anyway, Donald Trump tweets that Comey better hope there are not “tapes” before he starts leaking to the press.

    And the memo about that conversation is NOT leaked.

    Now that could maybe because it’s not incriminating, but in the memo that was leaked Comey mentions a possible crime on the part of Donald Trump. (Deciding, however, that perhaps he lacks sufficient intent, and he hasn’t got enough evidence of that anyway.)

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  168. Trump asked Comey to Stop Investigating Flynn

    Comey wrote the memo immediately after the meeting, which took place the day after Flynn resigned under pressure for lying to Vice President Pence about his contacts with the Russian ambassador, the paper reported, citing two sources who read the memo.

    crazy (d3b449)

  169. Flynn resigned the day before, if I recall correctly.

    Colonel Haiku (d3e242)

  170. So does Comey have notes on his meetings with Obama’s leadership while Obama was giving Iran billions and the bomb?

    NJRob (520017)

  171. DRJ (15874d) — 5/17/2017 @ 7:27 am

    The report says the Comey-Trump meeting was in February, too. Which came first, the meeting or Flynn resigning?

    Flynn resigning.

    https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/05/11/us/politics/100000005093509.mobile.html

    Feb. 13

    Mr. Flynn resigns as national security adviser after it became public that he misled Vice President Mike Pence over his communications with the Russian ambassador to the United States.

    Feb. 14

    Mr. Trump asks Mr. Comey to drop the F.B.I. investigation into Mr. Flynn, according to two people who read a memo that Mr. Comey wrote shortly after the meeting. Mr. Flynn is being investigated for his communications with the Russian ambassador, as well as for his business dealings with people associated with the Russian and Turkish governments.

    So, did Trump know about the investigation into whether he should have registered as a foreign agent?

    And why did James Comey agree Mike Flynn was a good guy. If he was on the take, would he still be a good guy?

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  172. If Comey was that kind of guy, surely he would’ve written many other memos regarding the activities he was involved in during the Obama administration.

    Supoena teh Comey diary!!!

    Colonel Haiku (d3e242)

  173. If being on “the take” was criteria, Washington DC would be a ghost town, Sammeh.

    Colonel Haiku (d3e242)

  174. This New York Times web page, although dated May 11, was updated May 16 (yesterday)

    But it still doesn’t go pasy May 11.

    “It makes me mildly nauseous to think that we might have had some impact on the election” was said with partcular reference to Oct 27, and there are some hints that Donald Trump took that as Comey saying he regretted Trump was elected, or that he felt Comey wasn’t being nonpartisan. [Because Comey wasn’t regretting what he did July 5 (which helped Hillary despite later Democratic claims that it hurt her because he went into detail about the pros and cons of prosecution) but it seemed to Trump he was regretting what he did on Oct 27 (which hurt Hillary and therefore helped Trump)]

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  175. I’m not giving them the scalp they demand.

    – Steve57

    Scalps aren’t given. They’re taken.

    Leviticus (3934cb)

  176. It’s not immediately obvious to me that this evidence could survive an early-stage defense motion to dismiss on an obstruction of justice count. “See your way clear to” in particular sounds to me like a direct quote, so for purposes of this discussion let’s assume that Comey will so testify and the prosecution for obstruction of justice would so allege. That’s not a threat of firing or other retaliation; that’s not a promise of a bribe or promotion. It’s literally aspirational. It does come from Comey’s boss, who also, coincidentally, has unchallengeable constitutional power to pardon Flynn. Even if you got a jury to ignore the lack of further proof and convict on that “see your way clear” statement alone, I don’t think it could stand up on appeal to a “no-evidence” challenge.

    Furthermore, President Trump currently has all Article II powers. The FBI exercises its powers on behalf of the President.

    To be sure, the President obviously does not have the power to order the FBI to defy a court order, or to order an agent to commit perjury. Shutting down an FBI investigation is within the President’s plenary powers.

    Michael Ejercito (462fbe)

  177. And the memo about that conversation is NOT leaked.

    That’s probably going to come up in testimony to a congressional committee in open session.

    And about those ‘tapes':

    https://newrepublic.com/article/142719/trump-really-screwed-james-comey-tapes-memo

    By contrast, ever since Trump tried to blackmail Comey into silence, suggesting he’d secretly recorded their conversations, the White House has been relatively consistent, if completely vague. At his daily briefing on Monday, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer repeatedly deflected questions about the tapes by insisting “the president has made it clear” that he “has nothing further” to say on the matter. The president’s own response about the tapes is slightly more revealing than Spicer’s: He doesn’t simply say that he won’t talk about them; he says that he “can’t.”

    For a White House as undisciplined as this one, the tape stonewalling scans less as a political position than a legal one. White House counsel Don McGahn, or someone else who understands the potential gravity of the situation, may well have told everyone to keep their mouths shut. If the White House were to acknowledge that there are no tapes, Trump would be caught in a very troubling fabrication to intimidate a witness, but if the White House confirms that tapes exist, Trump would face the legal obligation to preserve them and perhaps even surrender them to Congress.

    Spartacvs (2db708)

  178. October 30, 2016 CNN: Comey channels J. Edgar Hoover

    October 31, 2016 NYT: James Comey Role Recalls Hoover’s FBI, Fairly or Not

    Today he’s Saint Jim. Facts will reveal whether Trump has engaged in wrongdoing or not if the weaponized criminal leaks, score-settling, innuendo, political animus and cowardice don’t topple him first.

    crazy (d3b449)

  179. ah beutler, someone not worthy of vox, but likely msnbc

    narciso (d1f714)

  180. 180. NJRob (520017) — 5/17/2017 @ 7:40 am

    So does Comey have notes on his meetings with Obama’s leadership while Obama was giving Iran billions and the bomb?

    The FBI wasn’t involved with that, only the Department of Justice.

    Well, there was another thing. Besides freeing seven Iranians from prison (and downplaying what they were convicted of) 14 investigations of other Iranians were dropped, or at least their names were removed from an Interpol “most wanted” list.

    And before that their investigations had been slow walked. These Iranians were not in the United States, but the FBI had ideas for luring them to third countries wehere they could be arrested and extradited, or for attempting extradition in places they were or regularly visited.

    As time went on, additional levels of approval were required for any request to extradite or lure them from safety, and when requests were made they never got a yes or no answer – they didn’t get any answer at all. The actual FBI agents investigating these crimes (basically or mostly sanctions violations but very, very, serious ones) were quite discouraged, according to leaks.

    At the time of the prisoner swap I wouldn’t know if Comey wrote any memoes the 14 investigations of citizens of Iran but he probably didn’t speak directly to Obama about that. Or even Loretta Lynch.

    182, Colonel Haiku (d3e242) — 5/17/2017 @ 7:43 am

    Supoena teh Comey diary!!!

    I think you get into the issue of “executive privilege” amade up privilege, but still theer) which is still Obama’s to invoke, and it may be invoked by the White House counsel’s office on general principles.

    These memos are probably not in Comey’s perrsonal possession, but are government documents.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  181. 141. Dustin (ba94b2) — 5/17/2017 @ 12:53 am

    Partisanship has been getting worse since Bush V Gore,

    Bush V Gore was a symptom, not a cause.

    It goes back to the 1980s. Remember the October Surprise?

    But it’s been getting worse.

    It probably goes back to 1976 or maybe Watergate, actually. Maybe the Vietnam War except then it wasn’t partisan – it was Democrat vs Democrat, and started about 1966.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  182. “Be skeptical”, says the retired Navy Seal… “Be quiet!”, rages the 33 year old CNN “newsperson”/model…

    the media are nothing but crack wh*res now…

    https://www.google.com/amp/insider.foxnews.com/amp/article/55899

    Colonel Haiku (d3e242)

  183. the treehouse piece that had dates, names of officials, and their conflicts was not legit enough but this tripe from carlos slims is,

    https://www.conservativereview.com/articles/levin-behold-the-media-double-standard-on-trump

    narciso (d1f714)

  184. Perspective from far outside the beltway. CFP: The Bloodless Coup. Re-ordering society through doublespeak, collectivism, indoctrination over the decades. Comey is just today’s cause for action.

    crazy (d3b449)

  185. Yeah, narciso… and what’s given WaPo, CNN, etc. no skepticism at all.

    Colonel Haiku (d3e242)

  186. The FBI cleared Mike Flynn on January 24th why would Donald Trump ask the FBI to drop the investigation 3 weeks later on Feb 14th? And a day after Flynn resigned.

    Someone’s not paying attention to the time line of events.

    Steven Malynn (4c1400)

  187. Maybe Flynn wasn’t “cleared-cleared”.

    Steven Malynn (4c1400)

  188. Following the money, another shoe drops:

    From the WSJ: Russian State-Run Bank Financed Deal Involving Trump Hotel Partner
    Russian-Canadian developer put money into Toronto project after receiving hundreds of millions from deal involving VEB
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/russian-state-run-bank-financed-deal-involving-trump-hotel-partner-1495031708

    Tillman (a95660)

  189. Back away from teh pipe, tilly.

    Colonel Haiku (d3e242)

  190. Can you point to an exampled of “the hysteria” here?

    I usually leave when I see TDS here but, OK.

    1. And when you put them all together, it feels like obstruction of justice to me. But this is as tentative an unresearched as an opinion can get, under the circumstances.

    2. So, if this is true, is it an impeachable offense? My gut reaction is yes. Why is that wrong?

    Flynn did nothing that is a crime. If so, why is it “obstruction of justice to ask Comey to leave him alone ?

    If they were to indict Flynn and go to trial, the jury would acquit him in less time than it took for Billy Dale, the last political victim.

    Mike K (f469ea)

  191. Comey has been running interference for the Clinton crew for 20 years. It is good that he’s gone.

    And I hope someone primaries Amash.

    Colonel Haiku (d3e242)

  192. Let me mention something that has not been discussed — and I think Beldar’s analysis to this point has been on the money — but IIRC at the point in time that this conversation took place, the only “investigation” that was taking place involving Flynn was the counter-intelligence investigation of his contact with the Russian Ambassador during the transition.

    The criminal investigation into Flynn that is now underway involves payments of money to his firm prior to him coming back into the government, and whether he properly disclosed those payments when he re-applied for his security clearance as a retired Army General.

    I would need to research this a bit more, but I suspect that an intelligence investigation, the purpose of which is to only gather information for intelligence purposes, does not fit within the framework of Sec. 1503, which covers “corrupt” attempts to influence, corrupt or impede, the “due administration of justice.”

    So, unless there was an active criminal investigation of Flynn being conducted by the FBI, and Trump was aware of the criminal investigation, then there is no obstruction.

    And his statements that he had intended to fire Comey all along BECAUSE OF THE RUSSIAN INVESTIGATION could likely be exculpatory since the Russian investigation is a “counter-intelligence” investigation and not a criminal investigation.

    shipwreckedcrew (56b591)

  193. Thank you, crazy 178.

    DRJ (15874d)

  194. And his statements that he had intended to fire Comey all along BECAUSE OF THE RUSSIAN INVESTIGATION could likely be exculpatory since the Russian investigation is a “counter-intelligence” investigation and not a criminal investigation.

    shipwreckedcrew (56b591) — 5/17/2017 @ 9:18 am

    That may be legally correct but politically I think taking that position would be a disaster.

    DRJ (15874d)

  195. Steven Malynn :

    The FBI cleared Mike Flynn on January 24th why would Donald Trump ask the FBI to drop the investigation 3 weeks later on Feb 14th? And a day after Flynn resigned.

    This was a limited ‘clearance’ specifically regarding the intercepted telephone discussions he had with the roosky ambassador. Counterintelligence investigation ongoing.

    Spartacvs (2db708)

  196. The American Public has a love/hate relationship with divorce court:
    Love the drama (like watching a train wreck in slo-mo) – hate the “facts” and the abusive legal process. Now that the US culture is where it is today, everyone has seen first hand (or learned second hand) the fling poo against the wall, burn everyone, no rules enforced, no logic followed all emotion “legal process.”

    The Trump hate inspired trial in the media is a National Divorce. I’m going to try to keep my anger out of my responses, but all I see is garbage – and hateful emotion.

    Steven Malynn (4c1400)

  197. that’s not at all clear, this is the problem, we have emanations and diktats from deep state, whereas serious offenses like say Jennifer greene’s dalliance with cuspert, get swept under the bed,

    narciso (d1f714)

  198. Sparky, the SWC is spot on, and Beldar is providing legal analysis on the wrong statutes.

    Steven Malynn (4c1400)

  199. Even if the “Memo” states what the NYTimes claims, it is not Obstruction, says the NYTimes.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/17/opinion/trumps-fbi-comey-statements-are-not-an-obstruction-of-justice.html?smid=tw-share&_r=1

    Ok, Elizabeth Price Foley, hattip Instapundit.

    Steven Malynn (4c1400)

  200. I’m surprised they would allow so much crimethink, well they’ll make it up in volume

    narciso (d1f714)

  201. Steven Malynn:

    Even if the “Memo” states what the NYTimes claims, it is not Obstruction, says the NYTimes.

    By itself, no. But when you combine that with firing the guy?

    Spartacvs (2db708)

  202. aphrael @ 50 hits the core point, in my opinion:

    Impeachment isn’t a legal question – it’s a political one. At this point, I suspect impeachment is going to be a big issue in the midterms.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  203. Whether or not any of this constitutes “obstruction of justice” in a criminal sense is beside the point, I think. The question at this juncture is whether or not the pro-impeachment crowd will be able to generate enough energy between now and the mid-terms to make impeachment a reality.

    I can see this leading to some interesting coalitions – some anti-impeachment Dems who want to leave Trump to embarrass and humiliate and cripple the Republicans for as long as possible, and some pro-impeachment Republicans who want to get Pence into the driver’s seat asap.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  204. pipe down saul goodman, the fact is this memo is as real as Cibola, whereas the press ignored Rosenstein presence and the memo, as they mostly did the emails that categorized multiple offenses,
    just as they gave short shrift to Flynn’s department’s Salafist principle memo, or the case study on Libya, produced a month before Benghazi, and predictive of what would follow,

    narciso (d1f714)

  205. It will take some more time before Trump’s supporters realize that he is not a leader but merely a panderer.

    nk (dbc370)

  206. Impeaching Trump, over this codswallop would end the Republican Party and cement the Democrats into government for our lifetimes.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  207. Whatever, man. Whether you agree that they’ve given adequate credence to your theories or not, “the press” reaches a wider audience than you do, and makes its points way more clearly. And you’re going to be hearing a lot about impeachment in the coming months.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  208. UPDATE BY PATTERICO: So, if this is true, is it an impeachable offense? My gut reaction is yes. Why is that wrong?

    It’s wrong because nothing was obstructed simply because Trump made a comment.

    I’m losing track over how many investigations Trump supposedly fired Comey over. Every single one, though, continues. How is this obstruction?

    Where’s the obstruction?

    And oh by the way, Trump is actually restrained compared to Obama, who demanded publicly specific outcomes from specific investigations and specific trials.

    http://www.outsidethebeltway.com/military-judge-obamas-comments-on-military-sex-abuse-an-undue-command-influence/

    A military judge presiding over the Court Martial of two members of the United States Navy on charges related to the hot-button issue of sexual assault has ruled that recent statements by President Obama and others in the chain of command constituted undue influence over the proceedings:

    Two defendants in military sexual assault cases cannot be punitively discharged, if found guilty, because of “unlawful command influence” derived from comments made by President Barack Obama, a judge ruled in a Hawaii military court this week.

    Navy Judge Cmdr. Marcus Fulton ruled during pretrial hearings in two sexual assault cases — U.S. vs. Johnson and U.S. vs. Fuentes — that comments made by Obama as commander in chief would unduly influence any potential sentencing, according to a court documents obtained by Stars and Stripes.

    On Wednesday and Thursday, Fulton approved the pretrial defense motions, which used as evidence comments that Obama made about sexual assault at a May 7 news conference.

    …“A member of the public would not hear the President’s statement to be a simple admonition to hold members accountable,” Fulton stated. “A member of the public would draw the connection between the ‘dishonorable discharge’ required by the President and a punitive discharge approved by the convening authority.

    “The strain on the system created by asking a convening authority to disregard [Obama’s] statement in this environment would be too much to sustain public confidence.”…

    Service chiefs picked up on Obama’s signalling. Charges were also dropped against Marines because the Commandant, and normally the Marines are exemplary in resisting this sort of politics but they’re clearly not entirely immune, demanded harsh sentences.

    As it began trickling down everyone got the message. Any naval or military judge, every potential juror, knew what sort of decision Obama expected. And consequently their seniors expected. And they had to worry about adverse effects on their careers is they didn’t deliver. If this isn’t obstruction of justice I don’t know what is. I can cite numerous examples of Obama prejudging matters. And his prejudgement was, as I’ve shown here, consequential. Women may actually have been assaulted by some of these men. He really did derail the course of justice.

    Perhaps, Pat, you could link to your posts on the subject of Obama obstructing justice and that he therefore should be impeached.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  209. the press is in large part a cause of many of our problems, distracting with ephemera, while ignoring pressing problems, because their favored mouthpiece is in power,

    narciso (d1f714)

  210. yes it was a rolling purge, which fit the new class’s gender prejudices, as it was removing mccrystal for patently made up statements, removing Petraeus and mattis, for other thought crime

    narciso (d1f714)

  211. nk,

    I realized that over a year ago, but we are WAY past that point now. Impeachment isn’t a viable option. Resignation, the 25th Amendment and a heart attack are better plans.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  212. One has to remember that these charges are quite literally trumped up. NONE of them would rise to the level of any half-dozen issues of the last administration. If no one would prosecute Hillary for gross carelessness with TS:SCI documents, then this is beneath notice.

    There IS no Trump-Russia connection. It is a fantasy cooked up by the Democrat war rooms in the MSM offices. For Trump to say “stop it” is not an obstruction of justice, it’s a positive good. Even if we get better info that the Post’s hearsay about Comey’s hearsay as “proof”, it will still be a nothingburger except for the media that seems intent on bringing Trump down.

    The Deep State has a lot of power.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  213. It will take some more time before Trump’s supporters realize that he is not a leader but merely a panderer.

    If we’re going to start a pool on when this will happen, I’ll take “after the sun burns out”.

    Chuck Bartowski (bc1c71)

  214. Comey had to be fired because he was acting out politically. He had pissed the Dems off with the Hillary investigation and he was doing this to get back on their good side. Comey was obstructing justice by misusing FBI resources that could have been assigned to something productive.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  215. Thanks for the link to the NYT piece, Steven. It is by Elizabeth Price Foley, one of my favorite contributors over at Instapundit.

    Price Foley does a commendable job of putting the claim of obstruction in the proper perspective.

    ThOR (c9324e)

  216. “the press” reaches a wider audience than you do, and makes its points way more clearly. And you’re going to be hearing a lot about impeachment in the coming months.

    Never mind that the last President could have been impeached for over a dozen things. Freedom dies with the Press becomes a partisan puppet. If you polled Americans today about whether there was a free press in America, I suspect the result would surprise you.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  217. “I suspect impeachment is going to be a big issue in the midterms.”

    Yep. It’s the whip which will be used just as the ‘Culture of Corruption’ was used in 2006 to take the House. It has the enhancement of providing an outlet for lefties visceral hate of President Emmanuel Goldstein. OTOH – Saving Private Goldstein will become the Red Team mantra and the Blue Team has ten Senators at peril should the wind shift.

    I’m not at all sure ratings for the Great Clown Soap Opera of 2018 will be very good at all.

    Rick Ballard (6f7e69)

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    Sprat77t (48f8fa)

  219. I see where this is heading, so let me be the first:

    Trump could do better.

    Next squirrel, please.

    ThOR (c9324e)

  220. Impeaching Trump, over this codswallop would end the Republican Party and cement the Democrats into government for our lifetimes.

    I agree. And it would be a horrible precedent for the institution of the Presidency.

    nk (dbc370)

  221. I see where this is heading, so let me be the first:

    Trump could do better.

    No, on both counts. You are not the first to say that Trump is constantly f***ing up if that’s what you mean by “could do better. And he could not do better. He lacks the intellect and temperament to be anything better than we have seen. Trump will be Trump. If he changes, it will be for the worse as his faculties naturally deteriorate.

    nk (dbc370)

  222. Impeaching Trump, over this codswallop would end the Republican Party and cement the Democrats into government for our lifetimes.

    Kevin M (25bbee) — 5/17/2017 @ 10:13 am

    Concur. Moreover, I agree with Leviticus that impeachment will be an issue in the midterms. And I believe I’m in a unique position to say what I’m going to say because I was never a Trump supporter. Go back and look at my comments about Trump.

    It’s going to look to the average voter that the only reason impeachment is on the table is because he tried to deliver on his campaign promises. This is going to be true if you’re a leftist who thinks his Muslim immigration policy and his border wall is racist and bigoted. Or if you voted for him to get that Muslim immigration policy and the border wall.

    But everyone will know that no actual crimes were committed, or were even necessary as a pretense.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  223. Amashole from Michigan wants impeachment, in a way ok, do it. Good-bye GOP.
    Nothing could be better than no GOP. lying sacks of worm castings.

    mg (31009b)

  224. A good question for Pat would be “Has any superior ever requested that you be lenient in the course of your work and were they obstructing justice?”

    ThOR (c9324e)

  225. Followed, of course, by “was that superior the President of the United States?”

    Leviticus (efada1)

  226. 196. Steven Malynn (4c1400) — 5/17/2017 @ 8:58 am

    The FBI cleared Mike Flynn on January 24th

    What Flynn was cleared of was of violating the Logan Act (negotiating on behalf of the United States while not in the government) a law which is really, really hard to violate, and of doubtful constitutionality, unless it’s egregious.

    http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/01/officials-nothing-sketchy-going-on-with-flynns-russia-call.html (article dated January 24, 2017 01/24/2017 4:48 pm)

    http://nypost.com/2017/01/24/fbi-clears-michael-flynn-in-probe-linking-him-to-russia (this article says it was updated January 24, 2017 at 4:24am, which would mean he was really cleared before that.)

    However, somebody wasn’t satisfied. Apparently, after clearing him, FBI agents went to the White House to interview Mike Flynn, and he probably lied about that December 29 conversation so that what he said would be consistent with what he’d told Mike Pence and others and with what the public had been told, and so that he would not be accused of exceeding his authority and perhaps he was still worried about the Logan Act although he was more likely afraid of getting fired. Flynn did not know the FBI had a transcript and knew exactly what had been said.)

    A referral – it’s not clear exactly what it said, was then passed on to the White House by Acting Attorney General Sally Yates on January 26. The referral claimed that Flynn maybe could be blackmailed by the Russians because what he’d said about that conversation wasn’t true. That doesn’t make much sense, although it would make sense to say he could be blackmailed by people in the United States government!

    The referral probably did not state that criminal charges could ensue from the January 24, 2017 FBI interview – just that he could be blackmailed because what he said wasn’t true. Maybe in the FBI interview Flynn pleaded he had a bad memory, which would make prosecution problematic.

    The White House counsel’s office investigated and White House counsel Donald F. McGahn II didn’t see a Logan Act problem either, and, as a matter of fact he, or someone else, concluded that maybe he’d done some good in preventing retaliatory Russian expulsions of U.S. diplomats in Russia by leaving the door open to Trump reversing the latest sanctions on Russia (for hacking and meddling in the election) Flynn had said something to Kislyak like it would be easier for Trump to reverse the sanctions if Russia didn’t impose any of its own.

    Trump didn’t fire Mike Flynn, as Sally Yates and company had intended, so the contents of the December 29, 2016 conversation with Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak were leaked to the Washington Post, and this time the article mentioned that sanctions had been discussed. (The January 12 leak had only mentioned that a conversation took place)

    Flynn was caught in a web of lies combined with varying claims of memory failure, and his explanatons weren’t making any sense, and then Trump fired him.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  227. Don’t bring the host’s work into this. You wouldn’t want anyone to bring your private information online, would you?

    DRJ (15874d)

  228. If we don’t impeach Trump, then every future President will feel free to bully our FBI Director. A slap on the wrist won’t do. We need to make an example of this president to ensure that this doesn’t happen again. Our government has worked well since it has functioning checks and balances. Let’s not create a Banana Republic, especially just for Captain Chaos.

    Tillman (a95660)

  229. Impeaching Trump, over this codswallop would end the Republican Party and cement the Democrats into government for our lifetimes.

    No, it would end both parties and let the administrative state, also known as The Deep State, take over and run the government for its own purposes, mostly cash and pensions.

    Some history reading would do a lot of you good. Read about how Athens lost the Peloponnesian War and why Democracy usually ends as tyranny.

    We did pretty well for 250 years.

    Mike K (f469ea)

  230. If we don’t impeach Trump, then every future President will feel free to bully our FBI Director.

    Ignorance is strong in this one. Do you even know who Mark Felt was ?

    Mike K (f469ea)

  231. This has to be the stupidest “scandal” anyone could concoct.

    If Trump tried to intimidate Comey, it sure didn’t work. And it couldn’t work if tried. All Comey would have to do is go public. Or, rather, go before the Senate and House intel committees. That would be job security for a thousand years, not just ten. There’s nobody in a better position to do something about obstruction of justice than the FBI director. J. Edgar Hoover was the FBI director since it was first formed in 1935 until he died in 1972. In that time there were Presidents who wanted to fire him, but they were scared to.

    In fact, as a law enforcement officer Comey would have had the responsibility to do something about it. All he did was write a memo to file. Which tells me not even Comey thought Trump was trying to influence the course of any investigation.

    This is the world’s most self-refuting story. The LHMFM outlets that are trying to play up this memo as evidence of “obstruction” of justice have to ignore their own reporting. Both Comey and now acting director McCabe have testified under oath that nobody from the Trump administration tried to interfere with their investigations. All Comey or McCabe would have had to testify is that Trump was trying to block an investigation and the impeachment hearings would have started the next day.

    Trump’s comment only constitutes obstruction if you’re capable of ignoring the fact there has been no obstruction of justice. Which apparently encompasses a large number of people.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  232. Depleted uranium strength dense, doc, of course the film with Liam neeson will cement the narrativr

    narciso (ae786b)

  233. Mark Felt sez it’s OK for our President to bully our FBI Director? You’re out there in left field Mike K.

    Tillman (a95660)

  234. Whatever, man. Whether you agree that they’ve given adequate credence to your theories or not, “the press” reaches a wider audience than you do, and makes its points way more clearly. And you’re going to be hearing a lot about impeachment in the coming months.

    Leviticus (efada1) — 5/17/2017 @ 10:14 am

    So You admit the press is nothing but a fifth column that is trying to destroy the government because it’s run by the other side.

    NJRob (2cc6d2)

  235. Nothing could be better than no GOP. lying sacks of worm castings.

    Because then a real patriot party would rise from the ashes? No. The Dems would split into socialist and communist camps, and THAT would be our two-party system going forward.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  236. It’s by the director of concussion, and it has Tom Sizemore as one of felts rivals, so caveat emptor

    narciso (ae786b)

  237. What Flynn was cleared of was of violating the Logan Act (negotiating on behalf of the United States while not in the government) a law which is really, really hard to violate, and of doubtful constitutionality, unless it’s egregious.

    Consider Jimmy Carter’s trip to North Korea in the 90’s.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  238. Impeachment will be a recurring theme for the left simply because the GOP controls Congress. It’s a winning argument for the Democrats because they can’t do anything more than talk about it. Hoever, that’s also why this is bad for Trump and the GOP. Trump was foolish to give the Democrats so much impeachment ammunition to talk about and they will talk about it, endlessly.

    DRJ (15874d)

  239. Price-Foley makes the argument that prosecutors are routinely asked to be lenient. I presume that is true, but I’m no prosecutor so I really don’t know. Is she right? Are there commenters here who can answer that question? I’d like to know because it would help put the President’s comments in the proper perspective.

    The next time I’m pulled over, am I obstructing justice if I say to the officer, “I’m a good guy. Can’t you just let this go?” I hope not.

    The problem with this entire line of attack on Trump is that, coming the day after Trump had fired Flynn, Trump’s comments sound more like the words of a compassionate boss and not malfeasance. You have to be pretty deep in the #NeverTrump tank to see Trump’s compassion as an impeachable offense.

    ThOR (c9324e)

  240. Read about how Athens lost the Peloponnesian War

    Yeah, yeah. They said the same thing in 1937. But the dictators didn’t win. Even Stalin’s system lost eventually.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  241. 202. shipwreckedcrew (56b591) — 5/17/2017 @ 9:18 am

    Let me mention something that has not been discussed….at the point in time that this conversation took place, the only “investigation” that was taking place involving Flynn was the counter-intelligence investigation of his contact with the Russian Ambassador during the transition.

    I think that maybe it was not just a counter-intelliigence investigation. There was also the Logan Act.

    I mentioned @92 that that was the only investigation, but it hasn’t been mentioned enough. It is god for more than one person to bring that up.

    However, @181, I quoted from the New York Times chronology of May 11/16 which seems to imply that on Feb 14, there were also investigations of his business dealings with people associated with the Russian and Turkish governments, but I don’t know if the New York Times has that right, or in any case, whether Trump knew about it. This is also, I think, something different from whether he properly obtained a security clearance or filled out all the forms correctly after the election which is what’s most active now. They may not be looking into the idea that Flynn took payments to work as a flack for Russia.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  242. Trump was foolish

    Can we all just stipulate that Trump is suboptimum?

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  243. I think there was an active criminal investigation of Flynn being conducted by the FBI at the time of the Tuesday February 14, 2017 conversation between Donald Trump and FBI Director James Comey, (on the question of lying to the FBI) and Donald Trerump knew there was, or could be, and also that two days after that conversation, the FBI officially cleared Mike Flynn, as Donald Trump had hoped would happen:

    http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/02/flynn-lied-fbi-wont-face-charges.html (article dated February 17, 2017 02/17/2017 5:19 am)

    Another confusing, though predictable, layer was added to the saga of National Security Adviser Michael Flynn’s firing on Thursday when reports said he denied to FBI investigators that he discussed sanctions with Russia’s ambassador to the U.S. in December, though intercepted communications show that he did. It’s unclear if Flynn’s sanctions talk violates an obscure law banning private citizens from negotiating with foreign governments, but lying about it to the FBI is definitely a felony offense.

    So why is CNN reporting that the FBI isn’t expected to pursue charges against Flynn? It appears Flynn may avoid legal trouble thanks to his faulty memory, and misunderstanding of what “sanctions” means. According to CNN, during a January 24 interview with the FBI, Flynn backtracked when pressed on whether he discussed sanctions. Interviewers believe he was legitimately unsure of what he said:

    Flynn initially told investigators sanctions were not discussed. But FBI agents challenged him, asking if he was certain that was his answer. He said he didn’t remember.

    The FBI interviewers believed Flynn was cooperative and provided truthful answers. Although Flynn didn’t remember all of what he talked about, they don’t believe he was intentionally misleading them, the officials say.

    So Comey did indeed do for Mike Flynn what he had done for Hillary’s people.

    And he’d really set out to do that from the start, not becasuse Donald Trump talked to him on Feb 14, but because he didn’t want to bring charges that resulted in out of proportion political changes. The FBI interviewers offered Flynn a lifeline, and he took it.

    Although maybe they actually do that most of the time when they know somebody is lying to them because they are not really interested that much in bringing such cases.

    This New York Magazine article links back to a CNN article:

    http://www.cnn.com/2017/02/16/politics/fbi-not-expected-to-pursue-charges-against-flynn/index.html

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  244. If we don’t impeach Trump, then every future President will feel free to bully our FBI Director. A slap on the wrist won’t do. We need to make an example of this president to ensure that this doesn’t happen again. Our government has worked well since it has functioning checks and balances. Let’s not create a Banana Republic, especially just for Captain Chaos.

    Tillman (a95660) — 5/17/2017 @ 11:04 am

    OMFG!! The President did something that was squarely within the four corners of the powers of the presidency. He fired someone who expressly serves at the pleasure of the President. This can not stand! As James Comey himself said:

    http://thehill.com/policy/national-security/fbi/332876-comey-a-president-can-fire-an-fbi-director-for-any-reason

    “I have long believed that a President can fire an FBI director for any reason, or for no reason at all,” he wrote, according to CNN. “I’m not going to spend time on the decision or the way it was executed.”

    You are definitely onto something. It’s called mental illness.

    Do you really want more Trump? This is how you get more Trump.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  245. “Trump was foolish to give the Democrats so much impeachment ammunition to talk about and they will talk about it, endlessly.”

    – DRJ

    And his ego won’t allow him to ignore them, and his incompetence will inevitably result in his attempted refutations being counterproductive, which will give them further ammunition…

    And in the meantime, he will be getting absolutely nothing done.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  246. Well any hot war that lasts forty years probably is unsustainable but KagaN Pere’s study of Thucydides is instructive

    narciso (ae786b)

  247. 253. Kevin M (25bbee) — 5/17/2017 @ 11:28 am

    Can we all just stipulate that Trump is suboptimum?

    We should.

    Of course if he is suboptimum, he’s suboptimum also when it comes to coverups, so he couldn’t have colluded with the Russians, but rather, the Russians may have planted some people in his campaign, notably, of course, Mike Flynn.

    Trump is also suboptimum on character.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  248. Thor:

    You have to be pretty deep in the #NeverTrump tank to see Trump’s compassion as an impeachable offense.
    So by your logic, Trump asked the AG and deputy AG to leave the room because he didn’t want them to witness his ‘compassion’ for Flynn?

    Lol

    Spartacvs (2db708)

  249. Trump was foolish

    Can we all just stipulate that Trump is suboptimum?

    Kevin M (25bbee) — 5/17/2017 @ 11:28 am

    I’ve been calling the proprietor of Trump University suboptimum since before calling the proprietor of Trum University suboptimum was cool.

    Trump has exceeded my expectations, mostly because I had none. And I still don’t see any impeachable offenses.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  250. ThOR 250,

    You can express your opinion regarding what you think a fair and just result would be, and to back that up with relevant facts. But there is always a chance that the relevant authority (for exzmple, the police officer) might believe — based on the totality of the circumstances — that your goal is a corrupt result.

    For instance, what if you told the officer you know the Police Chief and imply you might ask him to fire the officer if he gives you a ticket? Now, what if you simply said you knew the Police Chief? Or what if you are the Mayor so the officer knows you know the Police Chief? The circumstances make the difference.

    DRJ (15874d)

  251. On February 14, 2017, James Comey and Donald Trump were talking about a crime that had been manufactured by the FBI, and if we had the whole memo, we’d know that right away. (We’d know right away that it wasn’t any of the other things Mike flynn may be under investigation for.)

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  252. I usually try to keep my mouth shut. I’ll keep doing that. Thanks DRJ.

    ThOR (c9324e)

  253. I think our situation is more like late Roman republic, which has some unreliable chronicler like sallust.

    narciso (ae786b)

  254. NeverTrump is Instapundit’s favorite meme. Why would that threaten him so much? The GOP and the Democrats have had times in the past when they could not wholeheartedly support a nominee or a President. Some Clinton supporters never liked Obama and there were plenty of Reagan people who didn’t like Ford. It used to be American to decide for yourself, but this socialist-style pressure to conform is no different than the teachers who hate dissent.

    DRJ (15874d)

  255. Steve57:

    Trump has exceeded my expectations, mostly because I had none. And I still don’t see any impeachable offenses.

    Impeachable offences defined………whatever the House/Senate may ultimately decide it means. In other words, not necessarily a decision distilled from legal argument…..but a political decision of the moment.

    Spartacvs (2db708)

  256. THOR,

    Perhaps you misunderstood my comment. When I said “You can express your opinion regarding what you think a fair and just result would be, and to back that up with relevant facts,” I was talking about what might happen when you talk to officers or prosecutors. I was not suggesting that you should not comment, only that what you say to the authorities might be construed as perfectly innocent or as vorrup, depending on the circumstances.

    DRJ (15874d)

  257. Corrupt, not vorrup. Sorry

    DRJ (15874d)

  258. I have a hard time believing that the electorate will see this as an impeachable offense. Not even close.

    ThOR (c9324e)

  259. DRJ, at 249: there’s a debate going on in certain liberal circles about whether it’s better to really push for Trump to be impeached (under the theory that his instability is a danger to the republic and he’s already shown a willingness to obstruct justice so what else would he do) or whether it’s better to keep him around and use him as a cudgel to help retake Congress in 2018 (under the theory that retaking Congress is per se good, and under the theory that Pence would be more effective and therefore more harmful to liberal interests).

    I’m on the “remove Trump” side of the argument, and honestly find the other side of the argument profoundly immoral (“so what you’re saying is that you think that Trump is a serious danger to the republic but you want to keep him around for your own personal political gain? wtf?”), AND if you weren’t aware of the argument, I wanted to point it out, because its existence somewhat reinforces some of the things you’re saying.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  260. Thanks DRJ.

    ThOR (c9324e)

  261. Let’s make a list of the government officials who should be bullied, stymied, circumscribed, or curtailed.

    Somewhere on that list there better be a guy, who if you absolutely have to converse with them in the course of your profession and those statements can later be twisted, construded, or reinterpreted in the fashion of an ex-wife trying to win a custody battle, and that malicious perversion of a half remembered comment can be used as fodder for a court case either in the media or a court, then that guy needs to be bullied. At least a little bit.
    Beating short of murder would probably do that guy a world of good.

    Fewer “Ronnie Earl”s in the world.

    Also any CIA operatives whose significant others like to brag about their spouses job just before during or after they write an op/ed in the New York Times, and yet insist that it’s the reporters or newspaper consumers fault that their top secret identity is blown.
    Nope. If you marry a blabber mouth, you need to turn in your secret identity decoder ring as you sign the marriage certificate.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  262. Mark Felt sez it’s OK for our President to bully our FBI Director? You’re out there in left field Mike K.

    I find it hard to believe that anyone would post a snarky reply like that showing you DON’T know who Mark Felt was.
    This might help.

    Jeeez ! How dull can some people be ?

    Mike K (f469ea)

  263. Mikey, It doesn’t matter who Felt is, when my point is that the FBI should not be a political arm of the Presidency. So, Felt leaked, therefore, we want a Banana Republic? Non sequitur, dude.

    Tillman (a95660)

  264. With apologies to the prosecutors and defense counsel here who know way more about this, here’s an announcement of conviction in case brought by the EDNY US Attorney against a powerful NY State Senator (Nelson) who abused his office, obstructed the FBI’s investigation and lied about it looks like.

    New York State Senator John Sampson Convicted of Obstruction of Justice and False Statements.

    Regardless of what “J. Edgar” Comey may have felt compelled to document for history after his Trump meeting(s) is there any indication that any prosecutor took note or was even contacted? Without that, this seems like trumped-up outrage over sour grapes. The difference between Nelson and Trump seems massive.

    Disclaimer. Trump’s a jackass who does frustrating and foolish things. I’m no lawyer and am in no way trying to argue points of law with the experts I come here to learn from.

    crazy (d3b449)

  265. I’ve been calling the proprietor of Trump University suboptimum since before calling the proprietor of Trum University suboptimum was cool.

    Trump has exceeded my expectations, mostly because I had none. And I still don’t see any impeachable offenses.

    I agree with this right down to the spelling of Trum University.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  266. 265… I think it may be because the guy who has held office for a little over 109 days has been under an unprecedented attack on all sides and he may hold a visceral dislike of those he sees as colluding with Democrats and their operatives with bylines.

    Colonel Haiku (d3e242)

  267. Shorter 217… https://youtu.be/pWdd6_ZxX8c

    Colonel Haiku (d3e242)

  268. “Mikey, It doesn’t matter who Felt is, when my point is that the FBI should not be a political arm of the Presidency.”

    Meh. This is a newfound belief by the Democrats. As will be the usual things that they and their media surrogates ignore during Democrat administrations.

    Colonel Haiku (d3e242)

  269. Impeachable offsense:

    * Firing a holdover FBI Director willing to go on a fishing expedition against the administration.

    Not an impeachable offense:

    * Using the IRS to hogtie opposition political groups
    * Coercing gun store owners into giving guns to Mexican criminals, then announcing that evil gun store owners were giving guns to Mexican criminals.
    * Refusing to support soldiers defending an embassy, resulting in several deaths.
    * Lying about a deal with out enemies
    * Lying about Obamacare.
    * Promising Russia “flexibility” after you’ve put [another] one over on the People.
    * Giving your putative successor a pass for her multiple felonies

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  270. Just peruse these comments… what a show!

    Awesome, Donald!

    “Well done… Keep it up.” – Arthur Jensen [Ned Beatty] ‘Network’ 1976

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  271. Comey has a history of asshattery…

    “I told my security detail that I needed to get to George Washington Hospital immediately. They turned on the emergency equipment and drove very quickly to the hospital,” Comey testified. “I got out of the car and ran up — literally ran up the stairs with my security detail.”
    “I was concerned that, given how ill I knew the attorney general [Ashcroft] was, that there might be an effort to ask him to overrule me when he was in no condition to do that,” Comey said.

    Comey’s use of the phrase “overrule me” is especially noteworthy, given that the authority he referenced belongs not to the deputy attorney general, but to the attorney general himself. However, unbeknownst to anyone at the White House on that day, Comey had assumed for himself the authorities attendant to Ashcroft’s position. Rather than personally informing anyone at the White House, including the president, the vice president, the White House chief of staff, or the White House counsel, the Department of Justice sent a mere fax to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue noting the change in power. For some reason, the newly designated acting attorney general didn’t feel compelled to personally inform any of his superiors that he was now a cabinet official.”

    http://thefederalist.com/2017/05/17/former-attorney-general-on-comeys-integrity-jims-loyalty-was-more-to-chuck-schumer/

    Colonel Haiku (d3e242)

  272. I think we can also all stipulate that the established Press is controlled by Democrat partisans, and that their interest in policing government is entirely one-sided.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  273. Congress should pass a law requiring news media to hire without a political or religious test, and provide legal recourse for instances of discrimination. Statistical evidence to be accepted as proof of intent.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  274. I think we can also all stipulate that the established Press is controlled by Democrat partisans, and that their interest in policing government is entirely one-sided.

    Kevin M (25bbee) — 5/17/2017 @ 12:37 pm

    OK, there’s a lot of truth in this. Everyone who reads Patterico understands the ‘oh that liberal media’ meme.

    But what about Rush Fox News, Breitbart.com, Drudge, etc? You could say they don’t really compare to the NYT and the big three networks, but then what about Trump being president?

    It’s a more complicated problem. Not only is the legacy media as biased as you say, but the alternative to them is even more biased, and more ridiculous. They are a symptom of a weakened American psyche. Everyone wants their bubbles.

    Dustin (ba94b2)

  275. Mikey, It doesn’t matter who Felt is, when my point is that the FBI should not be a political arm of the Presidency. So, Felt leaked, therefore, we want a Banana Republic? Non sequitur, dude.

    Tillman (a95660) — 5/17/2017 @ 12:17 pm

    What fingers in the Tillman means is prefers that the FBI remain a political arm of the Democratic party. Flying cover for their crime lord candidates to continue murdering, doing wrong, and importing strife to the four corners of the Earth.

    It’s just if he came out and said it that way people might circumvent the FBI’s “proper” role in their minds eye.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  276. Link at 282.

    Gonzales was taken aback by Comey’s appearance and testimony. It turns out that was by design. Comey kept secret his pre-hearing planning with Schumer and his staff to maximize the fallout of the bomb he planned to drop on Gonzales and the Bush administration. In a significant breach of protocol, Comey also refused to share with the White House or the Department of Justice that he had planned to testify about his work at DOJ, a move which made it impossible for the White House to consider whether it needed to assert executive privilege over portions of Comey’s planned testimony.

    As fate would have it, the Schumer staffer who spearheaded the entire spectacle was none other than Preet Bharara, a former employee of Comey’s in the U.S. attorney’s office in New York. Bharara, like Comey, was fired by President Donald Trump earlier this year. And Bharara, like Comey, owes his most recent position of authority in the U.S. government to Schumer and President Barack Obama.

    The only person involved in this who is in the Trump Administration who might know any of thsi is Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

    I think we can’t exactly figure out Comey’s motives for doing things, but it is not straightforward.

    Now maybe Comey wanted to avoid exective privilege being claimed could explain why he surprised people in the Bush Administration with his testimony. (He did this at a hearing on a basically unrelated matter) That actually would be OK. Gonzales says though, Comey lied about what happened at that meeting in the hospital with Ashcroft.

    According to Gonzales, rather than sitting directly next to Ashcroft, Comey and his two deputies, Goldsmith and Pat Philbin, never made their presence known, and neither Gonzales nor Andy Card, Bush’s chief of staff, had any clue they were there during the 10-minute meeting. To the contrary, Gonzales noted in his book that he assumed the small handful of people in the hiding in the periphery of a darkened room were actually Ashcroft’s security detail doing their best to stay out of the way.

    More important, in Gonzales’ telling, Ashcroft never even mentioned Comey, let alone pointed him out to Gonzales as being physically present in the room.

    There is (or was) something else going on here that Comey is not telling.

    But in any case, let Comey testify and tell surprises (the surprises will also have surprising ways of being proven false, if a lie. This is going on anyway.

    And also let’s get the transcript of the meeting Trump had with Lavrov and Kislyak from Putin, if he is really willing to supply it. If there are any impartial people left, we’ll know if and where Putin’s version lies or omits things.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  277. But what about Rush, Fox News, Breitbart.com, Drudge, etc?

    A recent reaction to the increased level of partisanship. But none of these is network TV, and none of them is a national or regional newspaper, ALL of which are as I said.

    The internet may allow many voices, but it also allows people to cocoon.

    In the real world, people on the Tight cannot cocoon — there is an incessant liberal voice, constantly in their ear. It’s unavoidable. But I can fully ignore liberal media online.

    OTOH, liberals CAN cocoon in the real word — that voice that is constantly in their ear is telling them that they’re RIGHT. Just so long as the avoid Fox News and Rush, which isn’t so hard to do. That these sometimes intrude on their ignorant bliss is one of the reasons they hate them so.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  278. *Right not Tight.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  279. If there are any impartial people left, we’ll know if and where Putin’s version lies or omits things.

    How will you hear them through the cacophony of lies?

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  280. Looking pAst the cave shadows
    http://romesentinel.com/news/media-l
    aunch-another-salvo-at-trump/QBqqeq!P4Y93OFIfoLpfe6MmYGZpQ/

    narciso (ae786b)

  281. Mikey, It doesn’t matter who Felt is, when my point is that the FBI should not be a political arm of the Presidency.

    I’m curious to know what Tillman had to say when Obama was using the IRS as a political arm of the Presidency. I’m pretty sure he wasn’t very critical of it.

    Chuck Bartowski (bc1c71)

  282. One question the mentally handicapped republicans will never ask comrade comey is – Have you met with anyone about making a book deal?
    He will be getting some large up front money for his memory…

    mg (31009b)

  283. The irony that I observed, is felt undermined his side I in a fit of pique, brought downbmuch of what remained of bureau and consequently the rest of the security estsblishment

    narciso (ae786b)

  284. So, Felt leaked, therefore, we want a Banana Republic? Non sequitur, dude.

    OK. I guess this is not the place for intelligent discussion. You sound like a troll.

    Felt brought about a coup that took down Nixon.

    Only an idiot would call that a “leak.”

    Mike K (f469ea)

  285. One might compare the breakin in media Penn, to wikileaks

    narciso (ae786b)

  286. Felt brought about a coup that took down Nixon.

    I remember things, Nixon resigned because he was about to be impeached. Impeachment is a constitutional remedy, you can look it up.

    Spartacvs (2db708)

  287. ROSENSTEIN APPOINTS ROBERT MULLER “SPECIAL COUNSEL” TO OVERSEE RUSSIA INVESTIGATION.

    Told ya.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  288. Felt provided the roadmap for Woodward and Bernstein, pottinger the acting atty (played by Noah wylie) identified the leaks from the grand jury

    narciso (ae786b)

  289. Three scoops of vanilla w/t chocolate cream pie tonight, eh Donald.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  290. Fox is announcing that Rosenstein is appointing former FBI Director Robert Mueller as Special Counsel for the FBI probe into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. elections.

    I assume Rosenstein will be testifying tomorrow to brief the Senate; if so, this might be one of the subjects.

    Fox speculates that the WH signed off on this decision. I very, very much doubt that — surely they are being very careful by now in avoiding any appearance of trying to influence Rosenstein, who has, by regulation, exclusive and unappealable discretion to make this appointment. I suspect instead that the POTUS may go ballistic about this.

    As I heard this news I was about to post a link to this April 2016 story about the Prince George County, Md., county executive Jack Johnson, whom Rosenstein (as U.S. Attorney for Maryland) successfully prosecuted for official corruption in 2011. The new story was about Johnson’s newer claims that law enforcement officials were mailing threats to him and his family, including “Monopoly money with handwritten notes on the back urging Johnson to ‘Rot in Jail.'”

    Beldar (fa637a)

  291. One thing is clear: Cleaving to right/left, conservative/liberal, Republican/Democrat tribes in a world in which more and more people define themselves as libertarian isn’t going to work. Neither will falling for fake-news narratives about Trump’s historical badness. We need a new politics that is ultimately based on policy, not personalities; policy, not politics; and policy, not partisanship. We need to demand more of our elected representatives and we need to start yesterday.

    http://reason.com/blog/2017/05/17/all-this-impeachment-talk-is-pure-trump
    All This Impeachment Talk Is Pure Trump Derangement Syndrome
    That man in the White House is vulgar, disrespectul, maybe even dangerous. So what?

    Steven Malynn (4c1400)

  292. @302. =yawn= . Old news Beldar. 5 minutes earlier they were whining about Tim Allen’s showgetting cancelled by Fx because of “conservative” values.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  293. Per 28 C.F.R. § 600.9, entitled Notification and reports by the Attorney General:

    (a) The Attorney General will notify the Chairman and Ranking Minority Member of the Judiciary Committees of each House of Congress, with an explanation for each action –
    (1) Upon appointing a Special Counsel;

    (2) Upon removing any Special Counsel; and

    (3) Upon conclusion of the Special Counsels investigation, including, to the extent consistent with applicable law, a description and explanation of instances (if any) in which the Attorney General concluded that a proposed action by a Special Counsel was so inappropriate or unwarranted under established Departmental practices that it should not be pursued.

    (b) The notification requirement in paragraph (a)(1) of this section may be tolled by the Attorney General upon a finding that legitimate investigative or privacy concerns require confidentiality. At such time as confidentiality is no longer needed, the notification will be provided.

    (c ) The Attorney General may determine that public release of these reports would be in the public interest, to the extent that release would comply with applicable legal restrictions. All other releases of information by any Department of Justice employee, including the Special Counsel and staff, concerning matters handled by Special Counsels shall be governed by the generally applicable Departmental guidelines concerning public comment with respect to any criminal investigation, and relevant law.

    Bret Baier was just reading from the announcement, probably made pursuant to these regs, and I’ll see if I can find a link.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  294. Rosenstein wants to get his rep back; events were boxing him I– this was the only smart move. Buys time.

    Next episode: look for the Donald to ty to appoint the weakest FBI Director he can sucker to take the gig.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  295. WSJ link: “Former FBI Director Robert Mueller Named Special Counsel for Russia Probe: Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein cites ‘public interest’ in naming Mr. Mueller.”

    Still looking for a .pdf link.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  296. Yep. Mueller being reported elsewhere.

    Also, Putin has offered a transcript of the meeting between Trump and Russians last week.

    Now all we need is Joe Lieberman to be nominated as FBI Director by Friday and we’ll have a trifecta for the week.

    shipwreckedcrew (56b591)

  297. ‘Baier’ in mind, 21st Century Fox is a media and entertainment conglomerate, not a news outlet.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  298. Benefit of having Mueller — career-long reputation for not letting things stagnate. He gets in, gets stuff done, and gets out.

    If there isn’t any substance to the Russian investigation with regard to colluding with the Trump campaign, it won’t take him a year to say so.

    shipwreckedcrew (56b591)

  299. The Donald best hire hizself an outside councel– one which excelsat at throwing chaff.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  300. Kevin @280, you left quite a bit off your list.

    How about exposing the fact that stuxnet existed, and that the Israelis were a key player, thus letting Iran know it had a problem with the centrifuges and enabled them to fix it.

    How about exposing the fact that the NSA had developed the ability to access computers that were not connected to the internet. Somebody had to gain access to the computer, but if they could they could install tiny transmitters in the keyboard or motherboard.

    Ho about exposing the identity of the Pakistani doctor who played a critical role in locating Bin Laden. And was therefore convicted of high treason and rots in a Pakistani prison to this day.

    How about Obama administration officials exposed the fact that we had what was once and should have remained a secret drone base in Saudi Arabia.

    How about Obama administration officials exposed the fact that U.S. special forces had expanded their counter-terror operations into equatorial Africa and they along with select contractors were building what once was and should have remained a secret base on the military side of the international airport in the capital city of Burkina Faso. The government of Burkina Faso was appalled. The foreign minister was shocked at this leak and said, “This cooperation should be very, very discreet. We should not show to al-Qaeda that we are now working with the Americans.”

    And how as this for a headline: “US Officials Say Libya Approved Commando Raids.” That was on the front page of the NYT on 9 October 2009. US special forces had captured a high ranking al Qaeda commander in Tripoli. And no one knew the Libyan government had cooperated. Until Obama officials told the NYT, and the NYT told the world. Which led to AQ kidnapping the Libyan PM in retaliation.

    And then there’s this.

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2012/may/11/underwear-bomb-plot-mi6-cia-leaks

    Detailed leaks of operational information about the foiled underwear bomb plot are causing growing anger in the US intelligence community, with former agents blaming the Obama administration for undermining national security and compromising the British services, MI6 and MI5.

    The Guardian has learned from Saudi sources that the agent was not a Saudi national as was widely reported, but a Yemeni. He was born in Saudi Arabia, in the port city of Jeddah, and then studied and worked in the UK, where he acquired a British passport.

    Mike Scheur, the former head of the CIA’s Bin Laden unit, said the leaking about the nuts and bolts of British involvement was despicable and would make a repeat of the operation difficult. “MI6 should be as angry as hell. This is something that the prime minister should raise with the president, if he has the balls. This is really tragic,” Scheur said.

    He added: “Any information disclosed is too much information. This does seem to be a tawdry political thing.”

    …Gregory Johnsen, a US expert on Aqap, pondered on his blog whether the group would now reveal the identity of the undercover agent. “Undoubtedly, Aqap recorded a marytrdom video of the undercover agent before giving him the bomb,” Johnsen wrote. “The US and Saudis won’t divulge his identity for obvious reasons, but will Aqap?”

    Obama exposed the identity of a double agent working for MI-6, which spent a great deal of time and money infiltrating Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula. Poof, Obama and people working for Obama blew the whole operation out of the water because they couldn’t keep their pie holes shut.

    It’s interesting; the more I read about this the more it’s clear to me that the Israelis (if Israel is the source) were extremely worried about Obama and his flunkies leaking. Because according the Obama administration operatives feeding this story to the press, Israel warned them several times that they would stop sharing intelligence with the U.S. if their intel was “too widely shared.”

    Sharing Israeli intel with the NYT, WaPo, et all most definitely meets the definition of “too widely shared.” It’s not at all clear to any of us that what Trump may have said to Lavrov constitutes “too widely shared.” Here’s a newsflash. When governments share intelligence with other governments it’s because they’ve decided it’s in their national interest to do so. And if it isn’t they don’t share. It’s not all that complicated. I alluded to that fact earlier because despite the fact we have an extremely close relationship with Australia I’ve been asked to leave the room because, “Sorry, mate. This is ‘no Yanks.'”

    I expect Congress will investigate. I can’t imagine anything more pointless. What are they going to do, subpoena the heads of Shin Bet, Mossad, and the IDF military intelligence directorate and demand to know who exactly originated the information what conditions did they impose on its use? As if, assuming the reporting is true and that’s a big if, they’d cooperate and confirm they were the source and potentially expose their sources and methods. It’s impossible for any of us on the outside to know if there’s any truth to the allegation that what Trump may have said damaged US national security or an intelligence sharing relationship. We don’t know exactly what the details of the conversation even were. McMaster said nothing of the sort happened, and Trump said that as President he had the right to share whatever he shared. Without knowing anything else, and I lump the anonymously sourced “former administration officials” garbage under the classification of not having any other knowledge, we simply can’t know.

    Steve57 (0b1dac)

  301. Next episode: look for the Donald to ty to appoint the weakest FBI Director he can sucker to take the gig.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

    Well, Comey is a pretty reliable tool.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  302. As far as that goes.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  303. @313. Among the stooges he’s seeing today, he’s interviewing Lieberman today for the gig. A Shemp among Shemps.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  304. Still looking for Rosenstein’s statement or other documentation, but as puportedly quoted by the Dog Trainer:

    My decision is not a finding that crimes have been committed or that prosecution is warranted,” Rosenstein said. “I have made no such determination.”

    But Rosenstein said that “based on the unique circumstances, the public interest requires me to place this investigation under the authority of a person who exercises a degree of independence from the normal chain of command.”

    He said a special counsel is necessary in order for the “American people to have full confidence in the outcome.”

    The order from Rosenstein, which takes effect immediately, gives Mueller authority to investigate “any links and/or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign of President Donald Trump,” along with “any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation.”

    Mueller also will have full authority to prosecute any federal crimes arising from the investigation, Rosenstein’s order says.

    “Our nation is grounded in the rule of law and the public must be assured that government officials administer the law fairly,” he wrote.

    So this story is going to be with us for months yet, best case for the POTUS.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  305. @Colonel Haiku 282. 287.

    The New York Times says that the reason that James Comey was believed over Alberto Gonzales and several other people in 2007 was notes from then FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/17/us/politics/james-comey-memos-fbi-culture.html

    In 2007, the typewritten notes of Robert S. Mueller III, the F.B.I. director at that time, helped resolve a dispute over the Bush administration’s warrantless surveillance program.

    Mr. Comey, as it happens, was also involved. He testified in 2007 before a congressional committee about a series of meetings and phone conversations about the surveillance program he had in 2004, when he was deputy attorney general.

    Mr. Comey, who had opposed the surveillance program, had different recollections than senior White House officials, and Mr. Mueller’s notes provided key corroboration of Mr. Comey’s version of events.

    That links to another article from 2007:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/08/17/washington/17inquire.html

    Notes taken by Director Robert S. Mueller III of the F.B.I. say that Attorney General John Ashcroft was “barely articulate,” “feeble” and “clearly stressed” shortly after a hospital-room meeting in March 2004 in which two top White House aides tried to persuade him to sign an extension for eavesdropping on Americans without warrants.

    Otherwise, it was heavily redacted, and maybe it didn’t back uopp Comey on other things but Democrats said it did.

    Comey himself actually claimed Ashcroft was in command of the facts.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  306. Mueller is the guy who may have fasley backed up Comey, or allowed himself to be used that way

    Now we have to investigate whether Mueller is credible (or whether his notes indeed proved Comey right)

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  307. Cleavon Clarke got dissed as in offered an undersecretary job at DHS instead.

    urbanleftbehind (b0f744)

  308. It’s a shame but this was a self-inflicted wound by Trump, just like the travel ban. Trump is not smart and doesn’t learn. That’s a bad combination.

    DRJ (15874d)

  309. Yes and I pointed out this little exchange was on March 10, 2004, the next day trains exploded in madrid.

    narciso (ae786b)

  310. This same language is quoted in several other sources. From it, I’m inferring that Rosenstein relied only on the “other extraordinary circumstances” provision in 28 C.F.R. § 600.1(b), rather than upon any claim that he or others within the DoJ have a conflict of interest.

    I personally don’t think that every investigation, or even most investigations, of high government officials should be considered an “extraordinary circumstance” sufficient to justify a special counsel. As one of Rosenstein’s predecessors as U.S. Attorney for Maryland demonstrated in investigating and securing a guilty plea (with resulting resignation) from sitting Vice President Spiro Agnew, there’s no automatic conflict of interest every time the DoJ investigates affiliates or members of an Administration.

    Re my comment above (#302), Baier just said the WH has already contacted them to deny any knowledge of the appointment until after Rosenstein announced it. Thank goodness for that much.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  311. I wish he were smarter. This election was about change and so far, Obama’s policies are still largely intact.

    DRJ (15874d)

  312. I think Trump is already on his way overseas, Beldar, so wiser heads at the White House are handling this.

    DRJ (15874d)

  313. @324. No, he’s still interviewing stooges for the FBI gig. Shemp Lieberman just left the WH w/his classic, Droopy, hangdogged gait– was caught on camera.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  314. Why did Rosenstein take the job as DAG if he was going to punt on the principle reason he was chosen? It didn’t take a very strong wind to blow him over.

    crazy (d3b449)

  315. @320- C’Mon, DRJ. This is a great show! Larry Hagman couldn’t have played this better! If only The Donald could have gotten Comey to sign a Trump Organization non-disclousure agreement. 😉

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  316. @326. Cuz after the way Trump seduced and abandoned him, he realized that dirt on his skirts ain’t ‘dirt.’ He wants his rep back.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  317. Trump Tweets to come: “Wasting taxpayer $. No Russia deals. Jobs, jobs, jobs! Trump/Pence2020!”

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  318. @ DRJ (#324): Maybe Tillerson can bribe the Air Force 1 pilots to release the “gentle sleepy gas” in the POTUS sleeping chamber, or at least fake a temporary WiFi/Twitter outage.

    Sigh. But of course they won’t.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  319. Beldar, Beldar, Beldar. Dontcha know it’s carbohydrates that make ‘ya sleepy?! Teo slices of chocolate cream pie with four scoops of vanilla ice cream and The donald will snooze into the Middle Eastern dawn.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  320. @323. DRJ, this is like taking 9 months of news events from the Watergate era and compressing them into 9 days. Helluva show.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  321. Re today’s interviewees with Trump & Sessions for the FBI Director post — former Sen. Joe Lieberman (who, contrary to press reports, does have “law enforcement experience” as CT-AG), acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe, former OK Gov. Frank Keating, and former senior FBI official Richard McFeely:

    I think three of these are “courtesy” interviews. Lieberman being interviewed is an oblique gesture to Israel and American friends of Israel still arguably miffed about Trump’s intelligence breach. But his appointment would not be perceived by the Left as Trump appointing “one of them” — the Hard Left thinks Lieberman sold out not long after the 2000 election (when he was Gore’s running mate). I see no upside and tons of downside in picking him.

    McCabe being interviewed is intended to soothe some ruffled FBI feathers over the way Trump fired Comey. If Trump didn’t at least pretend to consider McCabe as a possibility, that might have been taken by career FBI people as another slight to the Bureau. But given the past controversy about McCabe’s wife and Terry McAuliffe’s PAC, that appointment would upset a lot of Trump’s base, and I can’t imagine that Trump would trust him.

    I don’t know how Keating got on this list.

    But Richard McFeely, who was the lead FBI agent on the Oklahoma City bombing and who’s been a Bureau guy his whole career (without being a DoJ guy too, like Comey was), is probably the real finalist and, I now predict, will be the new FBI Director.

    (NB: My success rate in predicting Trump’s actions is below 20%, but I think that’s actually a pretty good track record relative to most predictions.)

    Beldar (fa637a)

  322. What you are saying is some people, are utterly unaccountable and some can have anything done to them, just so we’re clear.

    narciso (ae786b)

  323. In the real world, people on the Tight cannot cocoon — there is an incessant liberal voice, constantly in their ear. It’s unavoidable. But I can fully ignore liberal media online.

    OTOH, liberals CAN cocoon in the real word — that voice that is constantly in their ear is telling them that they’re RIGHT. Just so long as the avoid Fox News and Rush, which isn’t so hard to do. That these sometimes intrude on their ignorant bliss is one of the reasons they hate them so.

    Kevin M (25bbee) — 5/17/2017 @ 1:13 pm

    Interesting distinction, but as time goes on, I think the distinction becomes less and less. I get all my news on the internet, via newspaper websites, discussion, blogs, and podcasts. I never watch TV or listen to radio. I make a lot of effort to hear the other points of view, but it’s an effort, and most people don’t want to do this. They just want to know they are right, as you’re saying.

    Dustin (ba94b2)

  324. And here’s the full text of the accompanying statement, also with a .pdf of the order.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  325. 324. Trump doesn’t leave, or doesn’t get to Saudi Arabia till Friday. Its’a 9-day trip. Trump wanted to know if it could be shortened to five.

    Next controversy: In Saudi Arabia, Trump may speak to indicted war criminal Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir (not to be confused by the unindicted war criminal Syrian president Bashar al-Assad.)

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  326. (NB: My success rate in predicting Trump’s actions is below 20%, but I think that’s actually a pretty good track record relative to most predictions.)

    Beldar (fa637a) — 5/17/2017 @ 4:00 pm

    That’s superhuman actually.

    I believe Trump will appoint someone who has promised loyalty to Trump, and will be responsive to demands to shut down investigations that are harmful to Trump. Multiple Trump fans have explained this is completely OK for a president to do. Trump will simply say this is his being decisive and badass.

    I’d rather McCabe just stick with it as deputy. We’re not going to get someone better from Trump.

    Dustin (ba94b2)

  327. DAG Comey appointed Patrick Fitzgerald to investigate who outed Valerie the NOC Plame. Learned quickly it was DepSecState Armitage and then kept looking for bigger scalps. At the time there was bipartisan agreement in Fitzgerald’s integrity as we hear today about Mueller. Maybe Mueller will get in and get out and end the 2016 election hangover before we all grow old(er). As a political matter both decisions seem cowardly to me no matter how much both DAGs stress the need to restore confidence in the Justice Department which was their job. Who needs them?

    crazy (d3b449)

  328. On the upside, this may save a lot of WH staff their jobs as it’ll be better if the Captain keeps them aboard rather than cut them loose w/a SC on the prowl.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  329. “based on the unique circumstances…,

    A carefully calculated and planned series of leaks.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  330. James commey may or may not testify on Wednesday, but if he deoes, it’ll be without any kind of prior official discussion with the committee.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  331. 332. DCSCA (797bc0) — 5/17/2017 @ 3:52 pm

    this is like taking 9 months of news events from the Watergate era and compressing them into 9 days. Helluva show.

    No, it’s only about six weeks worth. A factor of maybe four or five.

    One thing to consider: If Hillary Clinton had been elected, we would be a whole lot worse off, because we wouldn’t be wallowing in Watergate.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  332. Watch for Trump to do a “yuuuge” Summer Rally Tour and go right to the base to fire up support.

    “Let others wallow in Watergate, we’re gonna do our job…” – Big Dick Nixon, 1972

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  333. Hmm. Look at the exact language of the appointment, because it matters a lot:

    (b) The Special Counsel is authorized to conduct the investigation confirmed by then-FBI Director James B. Comey in testimony before the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence on March 20, 2017, including:
    (i) any links and/or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign of President Donald Trump; and

    (ii) any matters that arose or may arise directly from the investigation; and

    (iii) any other matters within the scope of 28 C.F.R. § 600.4(a).

    So the authorization is very specific about the class of individuals being investigated: “individuals associated with the campaign of President Donald Trump.” That potentially includes Trump himself, but it doesn’t necessarily or automatically include him, and could be consistent with what Trump claims (and Grassley and Feinstein seem to kinda-confirm) when he says he’s been told he’s not a target (which always comes with an implied “yet”). Note, however, that by referencing the “campaign of President Donald Trump,” that implies a pre-election time focus.

    Likewise, it’s specific as to the matters being investigated — “links and/or coordination between the Russian government” and individuals associated with the Trump campaign. Again, that implies a focus on campaign events, not anything Trump’s done since the election or since taking office.

    BUT: Subparagraph (ii) is specific yet open-ended, to include, basically, any additional individuals and matters that might be turned up during the investigation. And even more emphatically, the reference to section 600.4(a) is surely to pick up and reemphasize this language from it (italics mine):

    The jurisdiction of a Special Counsel shall be established by the Attorney General. The Special Counsel will be provided with a specific factual statement of the matter to be investigated. The jurisdiction of a Special Counsel shall also include the authority to investigate and prosecute federal crimes committed in the course of, and with intent to interfere with, the Special Counsel’s investigation, such as perjury, obstruction of justice, destruction of evidence, and intimidation of witnesses; and to conduct appeals arising out of the matter being investigated and/or prosecuted.

    So the Dems have no grounds to complain that Mueller is being handcuffed or impeded by the appointment language. And this could go pretty much anywhere Mueller chooses to take it.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  334. One thing to consider: If Hillary Clinton had been elected, we would be a whole lot worse off, because we wouldn’t be wallowing in Watergate.

    Sammy Finkelman (

    I wonder if that spy embedded in ISIS, or his agency, agrees. Russia certainly agrees.

    Dustin (ba94b2)

  335. Bob Mueller has seen a hell of a lot in his career.

    This is good news. Trump fans should rest assured he’s not going to frame Trump. Trump critics should rest assured Mueller is smart, connected, and will give us the truth.

    We can all relax a bit and just let him do his thing, and wait for his results.

    Dustin (ba94b2)

  336. The Washington Post reported, says the CBS Evening News, that last year House Majority Leader
    Kevin McCarthy told colleagues that he thought Vladimir Putin was paying off Donald Trump.

    At first his staff denied it, but then they were confronted with an audio tape. Then Kevin McCarthy said he was joking.

    At least they thought he was joking. This was on June 15, 2016. McCarthy also thought (or said) Dana Rohrabacher was getting money from Putin.

    House Speaker Paul Ryan stopped him. No word on who did the taping, and how long the Washington Post (or Democrat operatives?) have had the tape. Ryan told everyboody not to leak.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  337. We;d be having all kinds of things going on, but no investigation.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  338. Mueller is OK and was probably the best Trump and Sessions could do.

    I;m sorry to see DRJ on the Trump hater bandwagon.

    This is our last chance to save the country.

    The Administrative State is not our friend.

    Mike K (f469ea)

  339. Further re #346 above, with a little bit of lawyerly paranoia added:

    The primary description of the “matter” as to which Mueller is being appointed is the “the investigation confirmed by then-FBI Director James B. Comey in testimony before the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence on March 20, 2017,” with a further specification in numbered subparagraph (i) of at least some of the things that were “includ[ed]” within that investigation.

    But this doesn’t purport to be an exhaustive or even a reasonably thorough description of that investigation. Indeed, by using this cross-reference back to Comey’s public testimony, Rosenstein is artfully — in a lawyer-like fashion that makes most of humanity envious, nauseated, or both — avoiding making a more thorough specification of the scope of the investigation.

    So if there’s still some aspect of this ongoing investigation that hasn’t leaked yet — including something that has Trump’s fingerprints on it, as opposed to affiliates/advisors like Flynn or Manafort — that would be included in Mueller’s responsibility, even though not directly disclosed in this appointment.

    Realistically, I think that’s highly improbable. But I can’t help spotting those potential loopholes.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  340. I;m sorry to see DRJ on the Trump hater bandwagon.

    This is our last chance to save the country.

    The Administrative State is not our friend.

    Mike K (f469ea) — 5/17/2017 @ 4:35 pm

    We had a heck of an opportunity in 2016 when Trump started his ‘Lyin’ Ted’ bully thing, smeared Cruz’s family, and got a lot of idiots on board. The opportunity has passed. I do not know if we’ll get another, but it’s gone. Trump hasn’t done much… not sure what you think you’re defending.

    Dustin (ba94b2)

  341. In other words, I think the cross-reference back to Comey’s testimony is a backhanded way for Rosenstein to avoid doing any more damage to the investigation by blabbing about it in public any more than is absolutely necessary. This is consistent with his criticism of Comey for doing just that — and probably not Rosenstein creating a language loophole to keep quiet some aspect of the investigation that hasn’t yet been leaked.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  342. Trump hasn’t experienced anything close to this kind of bitch-slap since the banks ordered him to live on an allowance back in the 90s– or Ol’Dead Fred packed him off to military school. The SC should put him on notice that his WH is ‘on probation.’ What a show!

    “Well, as of this moment, they’re on DOUBLE SECRET PROBATION!” – Dean Wormer [John Vernon] ‘Animal House’ 1978

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  343. National Security
    White House mistakenly identifies CIA chief in Afghanistan
    By Greg Miller May 25, 2014
    The CIA’s top officer in Kabul was exposed Saturday by the White House when his name was inadvertently included on a list provided to news organizations of senior U.S. officials participating in President Obama’s surprise visit with U.S. troops.

    The White House recognized the mistake and quickly issued a revised list that did not include the individual, who had been identified on the initial release as the “Chief of Station” in Kabul, a designation used by the CIA for its highest-ranking spy in a country.

    The disclosure marked a rare instance in which a CIA officer working overseas had his cover — the secrecy meant to protect his actual identity — pierced by his own government. The only other recent case came under significantly different circumstances, when former CIA operative Valerie Plame was exposed as officials of the George W. Bush administration sought to discredit her husband, a former ambassador and fierce critic of the decision to invade Iraq.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  344. Too late to catch the guy who taught Comey his manners, but we can still get some of Obozo’s appointees.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  345. I;m sorry to see DRJ on the Trump hater bandwagon.
    Since when is pointing out that Trump seems to be floundering badly, and that none of the policy changes and “swamp draining” Trump promised are happening right now because everyone is fixated on Russiagate, and that is in part because Trump, the supposed master of showmanship, can’t master the showmanship involved in politics–how is that “hating Trump”?

    The Left is doing all it can to keep Trump from doing what he says he wants to do. But Donald does not need to make that easier for them. And that’s what he is doing, through what seems to be sheer incompetence.

    kishnevi (871225)

  346. Tell your republicans can friends we won’t be paying for Trumps wall, but we will pitch-in for his impeachment proceedings

    El norte (2db708)

  347. Wrong on both count. Already building a test portion of the wall in California.

    You’ll be getting a bill in the mail, El norte. Muchas gracias.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  348. If you check the optional box, for a dollar more, we’ll spray paint a name of your choosing on one side.
    Perhaps a cherished ancestor? Whomever you want to commemorate.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  349. 44 years ago to the day, the Senate Watergate hearings began.

    Captain! History does rhyme after all. Drop the remote and pick up a book some time.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  350. I can see Trump calling in his queer and his DACA chits to slow down any impeachment fever in the corresponding Democrat caucuses, a variation of Leviticus’ post #213. Pence better know which bread to butter.

    urbanleftbehind (847a06)

  351. Like the epa and nea saved nixon.

    narciso (ae786b)

  352. @363. Pence is doing his Gerald Ford: he’ll keep his hat and coat at the ready.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  353. Mike K at comment 25:

    President Trump should pardon Flynn.

    I doubt he will need to. I think this is more anti-Trump hysteria on the left and a touch of it here.

    Me at comment 30:

    UPDATE BY PATTERICO: So, if this is true, is it an impeachable offense? My gut reaction is yes. Why is that wrong?

    Mike K says what he meant by “hysteria” in comment 25 was my comment 30.

    I want Mike K’s crystal ball, or at least some good stock tips.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  354. I did not say Trump should be impeached if this were shown to be true, or that he would be, but that I think it’s an impeachable offense.

    I.e. something that would have been good enough for this crowd had Obama done it.

    If shown to be true, will he be impeached? Nah, not without more.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  355. Well if we’re defining deviance down, by all means impeach, it will clarify the notion that politics must be pursued by other means. Like the slalom depicted in sallust and plutarch

    narciso (ae786b)

  356. It’s not as if there are issues of significance, we may get that nuclear war we avoided at the end of the Tom Kippur war, yay.

    narciso (ae786b)

  357. Mueller is OK and was probably the best Trump and Sessions could do.

    Sessions recused himself from this decision– unless he’s a liar. This is a Rosenstein call. Sessions would never have appointed a SC, let alone Mueller, in the first place.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  358. How many years during the Obama presidency were both houses of Congress under GOP control?

    How many articles of impeachment were passed by the House during those years?

    Does anyone think the GOP will be more likely to impeach their own guy?

    kishnevi (871225)

  359. I’m on the despair bandwagon, Mike K. This is such a waste. Trump is acting like a successful CEO who takes risks, and cuts his losses and moves on when the risks don’t work out. Being President is not like being a CEO of a comoany. There are downsides to making mistakes as President that CEOS don’t face. He apparently can’t grasp this.

    DRJ (15874d)

  360. May 17, 2017
    More #FakeNews from the National Laughingstock: Washington Post Dresses Up Old Silly Joke as Allegation that Trump Is Being Paid By Russia
    —Ace

    Oh my.

    Here’s what the National Laughinstock claimed happened:

    “There’s two people I think Putin pays: Rohrabacher and Trump,” McCarthy (R-Calif.) said, according to a recording of the June 15, 2016 exchange, which was listened to and verified by The Washington Post. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher is a Californian Republican known in Congress as a fervent defender of Putin and Russia.
    House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) immediately interjected, stopping the conversation from further exploring McCarthy’s assertion, and swore the Republicans present to secrecy.

    Sworn to secrecy? Oh, my.”

    Compare that to the actual transcript… http://ace.mu.nu/archives/369808.php

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  361. Be careful what you ask for.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  362. “I.e. something that would have been good enough for this crowd had Obama done it.”

    As if it would ever be followed up on…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  363. You must be joking.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  364. @372. DRJ, big difference is he’s only been a ‘CEO’ of a family business– his business.

    In a publicly traded firm, w/a BoD, stockholders and so forth, the Board would have likely dismissed him by now. The closest times in his life he’s faced any kind of ‘disciplinary action’ was the time he was sent off to military school or when the banks forced him to live on an allowance back in the 1990’s.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  365. The Democrats play for keeps and they don’t get played or rolled like a bunch of sissies.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  366. No they accuse those who would accuse them of being sex crazed or corrupt or senile, paging gerald wall in and it stinks the gasping body of ambassador Stevens ‘a,speed bump’ in our fmr presidents verbiage

    narciso (ae786b)

  367. What’s the point of pardoning someone who hasn’t done a crime, hasn’t been accused of a crime, and was cleared of any problem in his background check?

    If you want us to give Flynn a get out of jail free card, in the unlikely event he ever choose a life of crime in the future, I think that only works with Monopoly, or in Chicago (if you’re a democrat).

    papertiger (c8116c)

  368. Maybe you could petition Rahm Emanuel?

    papertiger (c8116c)

  369. Rahm Eamanuel couldn’t fix a parking ticket. (But he might carry the bag with the payoff to the guys who can.) Richie Daley was the guy to know if you had killed someone.

    nk (dbc370)

  370. I’ll defer to nk’s unique expertise regarding the democrat conspirator’s mind.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  371. Read that story I linked.

    nk (dbc370)

  372. Gonzales’s belief, expressed in the book, that Comey and Bharara colluded in secret with Schumer in an attempt to take down a top Bush administration official is no unsupported conspiracy theory, as Bharara himself confirmed Gonzales’s suspicions about Comey’s scheme in a 2016 interview with The New Yorker‘s Jeffrey Toobin:

    As Bharara recalled, ‘Jim told me the whole story on the phone, and the hair stood up on the back of my neck, because I realized what a significant story this was, and I was sworn to secrecy and nobody knew about it. I told Chuck. He was, like, ‘Whoa!’ ” In the days leading up to the hearing, Bharara and Schumer told no one about the revelation that was coming. ‘I was afraid that if the story got out of what Jim was going to say the Bush Administration would figure out a way to prevent him from testifying,’ Bharara said. ‘We needed to preserve the element of surprise.’

    The two faced conniving son of a [edit] has always been a two faced conniving son of a [edit], it’s just I never paid attention up til now. Oh MY GOD, in bed swapping spit with Shumer.

    I so want to give Comey a flying atomic elbow in the slats.

    Off the TOP rope.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  373. nk It’s almost like they invented the voluntary manslaughter charge special for in case the mayor or speaker of the assembly has a relative with the itch to kill somebody.

    papertiger (c8116c)

  374. It was pretty raw all the way around. Among other things, they tried to make the case dissipate with the passage of time by delays that totaled nine years, nine months and three days from the killing to Vanecko’s plea. That’s unheard of.

    nk (dbc370)

  375. Trumps words fall short of intent… which Comey canonized as the new standard

    steveg (b66960)

  376. So the guy who ran away from the scene of the crime was not the prime suspect, shirey.

    narciso (ae786b)

  377. 351. Mike K (f469ea) — 5/17/2017 @ 4:35 pm

    Mueller is OK and was probably the best Trump and Sessions could do.

    He wasn’t picked by them, so the word “do” is he wrong word. The best that they could hope for, maybe. But that’s not true. The best for them, maybe, is someone who would rotect Trumpp’s reputation, but that’s not what we need.

    But what we don’t need is someone trying to frame the accusations as something maybe Trump did, and not what other people did – we don’t need someone investigating whether Trump was bribed with money, which is almost implausible, rather than someone else being bribed with money; and we don’t need someone interested in protecting other people’s reputations, (like people in the FBI or Department of Justice, or other career people in Washington); and we need someone more interested in getting to the truth than in prosecuting anyone.

    The “special prosecutor” should have been someone with no history in Washington- and no problems or suspicions in his own state, and with the ability to pick apart lies. And he’d be attacked sooner or later by Democrats, and that would be a good sign.

    Sammy Finkelman (be6791)

  378. “The Democrats play for keeps and they don’t get played or rolled like a bunch of sissies.”

    – Colonel Haiku

    I couldn’t have said it better.

    For all the years the stupid-corrupt argument has raged on, I’ve thought the best explanation is simple incompetence. Gingrich was the last competent Republican; it’s been a very long drought.

    It is difficult not to admire the competence of the Left.

    ThOR (c9324e)

  379. Beldar @104

    Jason Chaffetz is already being quoted as saying he’s considering subpoenaing the memo and has his “subpoena pen” ready. </blockquote. Chaffetz, who had previously said he would not run for re-election, and then indicated he would probably leave before his term is up, now says he will leave Congress on June 30.

    (members of Congress leaving Congress in the middle of a term isis a relatively new thing, although theer have been cases now for more than 20 years I think. Senator David L. Boren of Oklahooma was an early example, leaving the Senate two years before hs term was up, and Jim Dimint, now ousted at the Heritage Foundation, was a recent example. They've always leeft to take other government positions, either Cabinet members or state elective office, but leaving for just ajob is a new thing.)

    I think a very example of quitting before a term was up was New York's Govenor Nelson Rockfeller, who quit in December 1973, with just ayear left in his term, although Gerald Ford brought him back into public office, as vice president, in 1974. Sarah Palin also quit, but probably she had had her hands tied from defending herself on ethics charges – lawyers couldn't work for freee, and she also could not raise money for them.

    Sammy Finkelman (0e8c82)


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