Patterico's Pontifications

12/9/2019

Reactions To The IG Report Released Today

Filed under: General — Dana @ 11:43 am



[guest post by Dana]

If you’re interested, consider this an open thread about the release of the IG Report, which can be found here.

The voluminous report, released Monday by Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz, identified 17 separate inaccuracies across three surveillance applications, effectively inflating the justification for monitoring former foreign policy adviser Carter Page starting in the fall of 2016.

Horowitz, nevertheless, concluded the FBI was legally justified in launching its inquiry into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election and that there was no “documentary or testimonial evidence that political bias or improper motivation influenced the FBI’s decision to conduct these operations.”

Reactions:

Attorney General William Barr on Monday rejected a key conclusion of an investigation conducted by his own agency’s watchdog that a probe into Russian interference into the 2016 election was justified.

Barr…called the FBI’s investigation into Moscow’s interference “intrusive” and said it had been launched “on the thinnest of suspicions” — even though the Justice Department’s inspector general report released Monday concluded that the overall probe was justified and not motivated by politics.

“The Inspector General’s report now makes clear that the FBI launched an intrusive investigation of a U.S. presidential campaign on the thinnest of suspicions that, in my view, were insufficient to justify the steps taken,” Barr said.

Barr added that “the evidence produced by the investigation was consistently exculpatory.”

***

U.S. Attorney John Durham said Monday he disagrees with the Justice Department inspector general’s conclusion that the FBI was justified in 2016 when it launched an investigation into President Trump’s campaign.

Mr. Durham was tasked by Attorney General William P. Barr earlier this year to oversee a separate investigation into the origins of the Russia probe. His investigation is covering much of the same territory as Justice Department Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz.

[…]

Mr. Durham says he’s reached a different conclusion.

“Based on the evidence collected to date, and while our investigation is ongoing, last month we advised the Inspector General that we do not agree with some of the report’s conclusions as to predication and how the FBI case was opened,” Mr. Durham said in a statement.

Mr. Durham noted the inspector general’s authority was limited to information within the Justice Department, while his investigation found information from “other persons and entities both in the U.S. and outside of the U.S.”

***

President Trump said Monday the findings of an inspector general’s report on the FBI’s surveillance of his 2016 campaign were “far worse than what I ever thought possible.”

The president told reporters at the White House that he’s been briefed on Justice Department Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz’s conclusions. The report found multiple errors and uncorroborated claims in the FBI’s applications for surveillance warrants, but said there was no political bias evident.

“It’s a disgrace what’s happened with the things that were done to our country,” Mr. Trump said. “They fabricated evidence and they lied to the courts. This was an attempted overthrow and a lot of people were in on it, and they got caught.”

He called it “a very sad day … probably something that’s never happened in the history of our country.”

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)

–Dana

UPDATE BY PATTERICO: I thank Dana for writing this post. I lack the energy to weigh in at length. I think Allahpundit sums up the whole thing best: “Today the dominant emotion in every major player in this saga should be humility, but we can’t find an ounce of it among them collectively.”

I predicted long ago that the IG would find the investigation was properly predicated. I also predicted that it would find mistakes by the FBI, because (as I said) an IG always finds mistakes. But I admit to being surprised and dismayed at the extent of the FBI’s failures to disclose important information in the Page FISA applications.

This reminds me in some ways of the Mueller report. Because of the wild and absurd heightened expectations by partisans (Trump was engaged in an active criminal conspiracy with Russia! The FBI planned a coup), the big headline ends up being that the absurd expectations didn’t pan out. If the media gave us the “collusion hoax” then Trump gave us the “coup hoax” and even though no sane person believed either, the big story ends up being that the hoax is a hoax. But in each case, the big dopey headline obscures what should be the real story. For the Mueller report, the real story should have been Trump’s rampant corrupt obstruction. For the IG report, the real story should be an incredibly slipshod and unprofessional handling of a critical FISA application — and that description is being very charitable.

Trump has spent three years undermining the rule of law. If the IG is to be believed, the FBI just contributed its own heaping helping of reasons to worry about the rule of law.

Where, again, is the humility?

217 Responses to “Reactions To The IG Report Released Today”

  1. Hello.

    Dana (643cd6)

  2. IG Report is out. Haven’t read the entire thing yet, but theconclusions is pretty clear.

    The first is below but summarizes as “The investigation was properly predicated as was not started based on the steele dossier”
    The 2nd is that the FBI really stacked the deck for the Fisa application.
    The 3rd is that there’s no evidence it was politically motivated.

    The decision to open the Crossfire Hurricane investigation was made by the
    FBI’s then Counterintelligence Division (CD) Assistant Director (AD), E.W. “Bill”
    Priestap, and reflected a consensus reached after multiple days of discussions and
    meetings among senior FBI officials. We concluded that AD Priestap’s exercise of
    discretion in opening the investigation was in compliance with Department and FBI
    policies
    , and we did not find documentary or testimonial evidence that political bias
    or improper motivation influenced his decision.
    While the information in the FBI’s
    possession at the time was limited, in light of the low threshold established by
    Department and FBI predication policy, we found that Crossfire Hurricane was
    opened for an authorized investigative purpose and with sufficient factual
    predication.

    I look forward to seeing some procedural changes to address the issues in the 2nd point above and protect all of our civil liberties. But I don’t expect that will happen. It’s sad really. Barr could issue guidance to the FBI today to address some of these issues.

    Time123 (a7a01b)

  3. The Durham statement really bothers me.
    If he has evidence put it forward where we can see it.
    if he doesn’t he has no business speaking.

    Making a vague statement at this point that’s not supported by available facts serves no purpose beyond the administrations political goals.

    Any of the lawyers / LEO here available to weigh in on if his statement was proper?

    Time123 (a7a01b)

  4. Durham and Barr(Barr also issued a statement) are saying that the investigation was based on a thin record.

    Sammy Finkelman (fb61e5)

  5. Sammy, i’ll take that seriously when the people who say it take it seriously. AFAIK neither Sessions nor Barr have taken any steps to address the DOJ procedures around what constitutes a reasonable suspicion. Since Barr doesn’t act like he means it, I don’t think Barr means it.

    Time123 (a7a01b)

  6. It’s like when some celebrity takes a private Jet to a conference on climate change. Why would I believe they mean what they say when they don’t act like it?

    Time123 (a7a01b)

  7. Simple thought experiment (which, of course, can never be proven one way or the other).

    If the exact same quantum of evidence implicated the Hillary Clinton campaign, would an investigation have been launched? Would a FISA warrant have been sought?

    Bored Lawyer (998177)

  8. Comey’s big speech about emails right before the election makes me think it would. Mcabe’s big leak was actually damaging to Hillary…doesn’t look to me like the FBI loved her. Looks to me like she was very good at being corrupt.

    Time123 (a7a01b)

  9. BTW, I have not read the report, but what about the part regarding the FISA warrant application and leaving out critical information?

    That, in my mind (maybe because I am a lawyer) is serious. Misleading a court, especially a secret court, to get a warrant is a more serious problem than starting an investigation based on flimsy evidence.

    Bored Lawyer (998177)

  10. BTW, I have not read the report, but what about the part regarding the FISA warrant application and leaving out critical information?

    Hammered them about that, rightfully so. But I see it that starting an investigation on a pretext and without proper basis is bad. Also, for all the loud noises about spying, no one has alleged that the information gathered was misused in some way.

    It looks like the FBI really thought they had a legitimate need for an investigation, followed the rules for the most part, and didn’t present a full picture to the FISA court.

    Time123 (c9382b)

  11. Hammered them about that, rightfully so.

    If I was a judge on the FISA court, I would be plenty steamed.

    Bored Lawyer (998177)

  12. The Dow is up; unemployment is down; the holidays are here and the folks in flyover country are fat and happy– but what’s with this 10-cent light bulb…

    See Eastern Air Lines Flight 401 for details.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  13. Why? From what I know they almost never turn down a warren request.

    Time123 (de0f5d)

  14. “McCabe’s big leak was actually damaging to Hillary…doesn’t look to me like the FBI loved her.”
    Time123 (a7a01b) — 12/9/2019 @ 12:04 pm

    McCabe sat on the emails found on Carlos Danger’s laptop, and more honest types in the FBI took note. This forced the leak, so as to get ahead of a storyline that McCabe was covering for her.

    At the conclusion of the FBI interview with Hillary, one agent called her “Mrs. President.”

    Munroe (4ae3dd)

  15. Why? From what I know they almost never turn down a warren request.

    Because the courts trust the government to be professional. Same thing happens when they apply for a regular warrant.

    If it turns out that the trust was misplaced, then they are going to have a problem.

    Bored Lawyer (998177)

  16. @14, bold claim. I missed that in the last IG report. Can you quote the relevant passage?

    Time123 (a7a01b)

  17. BL, my point is that the trust is misplaced and the system does not protect our right to privacy. My evidence for the assertion is the extremely low rate of rejection by the FISA court. It’s not actually zero, but it’s very close.

    Time123 (a7a01b)

  18. 10. Time123 (c9382b) — 12/9/2019 @ 12:25 pm

    Also, for all the loud noises about spying, no one has alleged that the information gathered was misused in some way.

    This is very important. Also, they didn’t get any politically useful information.

    And were trying to avoid getting that.

    The FBI wanted to get along with both political parties.

    Sammy Finkelman (fb61e5)

  19. James Comey
    @Comey
    So it was all lies. No treason. No spying on the campaign. No tapping Trumps wires. It was just good people trying to protect America. https://washingtonpost.com/opinions/james-comey-the-truth-is-finally-out-the-fbi-fulfilled-its-mission/2019/12/09
    __ _

    Stephen Miller
    @redsteeze
    “James Comey did nothing wrong” – A Washington Post Perspective by James Comey.
    __ _

    Laurence Watkins
    @thelarrywatkins
    ·
    Worked for Katie Hill
    __ _

    4MANGANG
    @garyjf75
    ·
    We thought they spied on two Americans, we now know it was FOUR. James Comey’s FBI ignored guidelines and rules in spying on Trump’s campaign in 2016. Within one week of the investigation opening, the FBI was surveilling the campaign and four specific individuals associated

    _

    harkin (337580)

  20. https://twitter.com/realdonaldtrump/status/837996746236182529

    Donald J. Trump
    ‏Verified account @realDonaldTrump

    How low has President Obama gone to tapp my phones during the very sacred election process. This is Nixon/Watergate. Bad (or sick) guy!
    4:02 AM – 4 Mar 2017

    Good times.

    Davethulhu (fab944)

  21. I think Durham needs to wait until all his work is wrapped up in a bow before he will release his full findings
    If you read his statement carefully, he points towards the fact that his investigation is wider and deeper than the IG’s report. The IG plays slow pitch softball and Durham is Major League hardball.
    When the IG says he couldn’t find x,y or z, it only means that x,y,z weren’t where his rules allowed him to look. Durham can follow his leads as far and as deep as the evidence requires.

    steveg (354706)

  22. This IG report is pretty damning. There must be institutional overhauling to prevent this sort of thing from happening again.

    whembly (fd57f6)

  23. @22 going on three years without so much as talking about reforms to the FISA court.
    But at least the investigation was properly founded and not influenced by political bias.

    Time123 (d54166)

  24. Looks like more CYA! The deep state knows how to protect its own.

    asset (037eeb)

  25. 23

    @22
    But at least the investigation was properly founded and not influenced by political bias.

    On technical basis, there was a low bar to initiate the investigations.

    Why?

    Because there were no policies to address opening up an investigation of a rival political opponent.

    The issue is if was properly predicated…not that all the “i’s” and t’s” were dotted/crossed.

    The former is sorely lacking and deeply troubling… the latter re-enforces the mantra that any prosecutor can indict a ham sandwich.

    How’s this for a conundrum?

    If you have issues with Trump asking foreign powers to investigate is political rival for what you believe for political purposes…why aren’t you outraged by the Obama administration investigating their political rivals based on the flimsiest of “evidence”?

    At least with Ukraine, you have strong evidence in Hunter Biden’s role and Joe Biden’s public admission. Whereas the massive counterintel investigation by the Obama administration against political comapaing of opposing party was started solely on tip from foreign government, and nothing else according from the IG report. Within days of that , 4 campaign officials targeted and picked because they’d been to Russia or talked to Russians. Talk about flimsy evidence!!

    Yes, the IG stated that it was technically possible thanks to the “low threshold” the FBI has for counterintel investigations. He did state that he was “concerned” and about the “intrusive investigation” techniques that could impact constitutionally protect activiy”.

    I mean, think about where the IG is coming from… he’s not going to throw bombs and left and right on his own agency. But, what’s stated there is really bloody damning and I’m still trying to absorb it all.

    whembly (fd57f6)

  26. I give it a 6 out of 10
    and expect nothing from barr and his cronies from ruby ridge

    mg (8cbc69)

  27. @25

    1. The IG exists specifically to investigate and criticize their own agency.
    2. According the IG that evidence you don’t like is sufficient to start an investigation. If we don’t like that we can change the laws, or the DOJ procedures. I keep pointing out that Trump has not even tried to do so.
    3. Your formulation that this was against political comapaing of opposing party ignores that the IG found no evidence that political bias impacted the investigation.
    4. At least with Ukraine, you have strong evidence in Hunter Biden’s role and Joe Biden’s public admission. This is not a factually accurate characterization. The prosecutor in question was fired because he was corrupt and was not investigating wrongdoing.
    5. The ask wasn’t to investigate, it was to announce an investigation.
    6. There’s no evidence submitted yet that the white house was actually interested in fighting corruption. They’ll say it on the news, but no one has testified to it under oath.

    Time123 (d54166)

  28. @25, you’re right that there are no special protections for people associated with political campaigns. They’re covered by the same rules as your or I. As they should be.

    Time123 (d54166)

  29. Barr and Dunham are right to disagree. The IG Report is narrowly focused and didn’t want to say the FISA warrant was not justified UNLESS they had a specific clear evidence to the contrary.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  30. IG Report was like this:

    Mr. Comey and Mr. McCabe did you let politics influence your decisions?

    No.

    Well, there you have it. No evidence of political bias!

    rcocean (1a839e)

  31. “why aren’t you outraged by the Obama administration investigating their political rivals based on the flimsiest of “evidence”?”

    This didn’t happen, the report explicitly says so.

    Davethulhu (fab944)

  32. @25

    1. The IG exists specifically to investigate and criticize their own agency.

    True. But the IG report is very pendandent and very dry report. There’s not going to be a section in there that says “Bombshell Here!!” “Bombshell There!!”.

    2. According the IG that evidence you don’t like is sufficient to start an investigation. If we don’t like that we can change the laws, or the DOJ procedures. I keep pointing out that Trump has not even tried to do so.

    I’m not arguing otherwise.

    3. Your formulation that this was against political comapaing of opposing party ignores that the IG found no evidence that political bias impacted the investigation.

    He found political bias… but couldn’t prove that the actions taken was caused by bias. That’s the distinction. Furthermore, the IG isn’t best equipped to determine that as he could only interview current officials in the DOJ. (ie, no interview with McCabe/Strozk/Comey/etc). Durnham would have to be the individual to ascertain that.

    4. At least with Ukraine, you have strong evidence in Hunter Biden’s role and Joe Biden’s public admission. This is not a factually accurate characterization. The prosecutor in question was fired because he was corrupt and was not investigating wrongdoing.

    The prosecutor *was* looking into Burisma.

    So, yes, that is a factually accurate charaterization.

    It’s factually accurate that Hunter Biden was on the board of director. That, in itself, isnt that a big deal.

    The big deal was that Joe Biden was the point person of all things Ukraine under Obama. THAT, at the very least, appears to have corrupt conflict of interest, even if he does nothing that impacted his son’s company. Hell, several states department reported that “this looks bad”.

    5. The ask wasn’t to investigate, it was to announce an investigation.

    It was both.

    Sonland/Rudy wanted the public announcement as a means to hold Ukraine accountable.

    6. There’s no evidence submitted yet that the white house was actually interested in fighting corruption. They’ll say it on the news, but no one has testified to it under oath.

    Time123 (d54166) — 12/9/2019 @ 3:28 pm

    We have their words… up to us to determine if we believe them.

    @25, you’re right that there are no special protections for people associated with political campaigns. They’re covered by the same rules as your or I. As they should be.

    Time123 (d54166) — 12/9/2019 @ 3:29 pm

    There ought to be some policy that says “make damn sure that you have something, or there will be a political backlash” to some effect.

    whembly (c30c83)

  33. “why aren’t you outraged by the Obama administration investigating their political rivals based on the flimsiest of “evidence”?”

    This didn’t happen, the report explicitly says so.

    Davethulhu (fab944) — 12/9/2019 @ 3:45 pm

    Um… report says the investigation was opened by a tip from friendly foreign power and FISA warrants was sourced by Steele Dossier.

    Yeah… those are the flimsiest of evidences possible.

    whembly (c30c83)

  34. Whembly, I appreciate the discussion but i think we’re making a mistake to keep adding points. So I’m gong to pick 1 thing and dive into that. I just wanted to be clear about why so you didn’t think I was ignoring your other comments for no good reason.

    1. The IG exists specifically to investigate and criticize their own agency.

    True. But the IG report is very pendandent and very dry report. There’s not going to be a section in there that says “Bombshell Here!!” “Bombshell There!!”.

    2. According the IG that evidence you don’t like is sufficient to start an investigation. If we don’t like that we can change the laws, or the DOJ procedures. I keep pointing out that Trump has not even tried to do so.

    I’m not arguing otherwise.

    3. Your formulation that this was against political comapaing of opposing party ignores that the IG found no evidence that political bias impacted the investigation.

    He found political bias… but couldn’t prove that the actions taken was caused by bias. That’s the distinction. Furthermore, the IG isn’t best equipped to determine that as he could only interview current officials in the DOJ. (ie, no interview with McCabe/Strozk/Comey/etc). Durnham would have to be the individual to ascertain that.

    The IG report is supposed to be dry, factual and thorough. That’s not a bug, it’s a feature. The point is to hold people who break internal rules accountable and identify where there are gaps in the rules & procedures. The IG stated clearly several times that they had no evidence of political bias.

    Here’s what the IG said about interviews. It looks like they were able to talk to almost everyone they wanted to.

    The OIG examined more than one million
    documents that were in the Department’s and FBI’s
    possession and conducted over 170 interviews involving
    more than 100 witnesses. These witnesses included
    former FBI Director Corney, former Attorney General
    (AG) Loretta Lynch, former Deputy Attorney General
    (DAG) Sally Yates, former DAG Rod Rosenstein, former
    Acting AG and Acting DAG and current FBI General
    Counsel Dana Boente, former FBI Deputy Director
    Andrew McCabe, former FBI General Counsel James
    Baker, and Department attorney Bruce Ohr and his
    wife. The OIG also interviewed Christopher Steele and
    current and former employees of other U.S.
    government agencies. Two witnesses, Glenn Simpson
    and Jonathan Winer (a former Department of State
    official), declined our requests for voluntary interviews,
    and we were unable to compel their testimony.

    Time123 (6e0727)

  35. @43 I don’t disagree with you regarding that the IG is supposed to be dry, factual and thorough.

    Here’s the caveat, he only has jurisdiction within the DOJ and only with those still working. Those outside of the DOJ the IG doesn’t have subpoena power to compel testimony.

    Comey and Strokz refused to request continuation of security clearance, so the interviews with those two would be incomplete as the IG wouldn’t be able to interview them on classified information.

    So, while the whole report is pretty damning, it’s not a criminal investigation. That will come if/when Barr/Durnham continue their investigation, and both their statements today alludes that the IG will not have the last word. (which I don’t think anything will happen to be honest, but they’re prosecutors who does have subpoena power and can empanel grand jury).

    But from what I’ve read, and seen online, this report is really damning and it’s unfortunate. It’ll take a generation, at least, for the FBI/DOJ to clean this stain off their reputations.

    whembly (c30c83)

  36. “Um… report says the investigation was opened by a tip from friendly foreign power and FISA warrants was sourced by Steele Dossier.”

    “investigating their political rivals” implies bias. “Obama administration” implies direction from Obama himself or senior leadership.

    Beyond that, I have the same opinion as Time123, there’s been no initiative to curtail the power of these sorts of warrants, so it sure feels like it’s only a problem when the “wrong” people get investigated.

    Davethulhu (fab944)

  37. From what I’ve read in the report the investigation was proper and the fisa application was badly done. If there’s evidence to support the claims of a “coup” or the “deep state” being out to get Trump it still hasn’t been provided.

    Haven’t read much online because I expect most pundits had their conclusions written beforehand and don’t

    Time123 (ded883)

  38. In 2016 what the FBI was actually trying to do was to satisfy the Democrats while doing nothing to anger the Republicans if they won.

    Sammy Finkelman (fb61e5)

  39. Wasn’t the first FISA rejected? For a court that almost never rejects anything. Then the FBI put their “sourced” material into the application to get it approved, neglecting to mention where and how it came about.

    NJRob (8fe6b0)

  40. The Appendix identifies a total of 51 Woods procedure violations from the FISA application the FBI submitted to the court authorizing surveillance of former Trump campaign aide Carter Page starting in October 2016.

    A whopping nine of those violations fell into the category called: “Supporting document shows that the factual assertion is inaccurate.”…

    And the appendix shows the FBI made another nine factual assertions that did not match the supporting evidence in the file. In another words, the bureau was misleading on nine other occasions.

    Walter Cronanty (f48cd5)

  41. So my take from this is that

    1. The FBI met the standards.
    2. The standards are low.
    3. The Trump administration and Congress have done nothing to attempt to increase the required standards.

    Which leads me to…

    4. The outrage isn’t based on the low standards (though they may be), it’s entirely based on who was being investigated, so it’s just the usual political noise.

    Nic (896fdf)

  42. Barr’s rejection of the IG conclusion smells like the misleading spin he put on the Mueller report before it came out. . I don’t trust this lapdog AG.

    Paul Montagu (c32cf0)

  43. @12…
    The stock market seems like a strange metric. It has gone up under every President in the last 60 years except for the younger Bush. It did pretty good under Obama.

    Fred (056bb0)

  44. “bold claim. I missed that in the last IG report. Can you quote the relevant passage?”
    Time123 (a7a01b) — 12/9/2019 @ 12:51 pm

    Pages 7-9. Dig for it yourself.
    https://oig.justice.gov/reports/2018/o20180413.pdf

    https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/04/andrew-mccabe-collusion-obama-justice-department-clinton-campaign/

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  45. ‘If there’s evidence to support the claims of a “coup” or the “deep state” being out to get Trump it still hasn’t been provided.’
    Time123 (ded883) — 12/9/2019 @ 4:38 pm

    Viva le Obliviousness.

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  46. Time123
    The IG report noted it could not question Comey because Comey was no longer an employee of the FBI and he decided not to renew his security clearance so the IG had no power to compel him to answer questions or take the 5th. The US Attorney can

    steveg (354706)

  47. Couple the violations found in the Appendix of the report with the NSA violations of privacy rights of US citizens as set forth in the FISA Court’s April 26, 2017 order and opinion which the Court characterized as “widespread” and which created a “very serious Fourth Amendment issue,” and you’ve got some serious shenanigans going on.

    Walter Cronanty (f48cd5)

  48. @47, thank you, i’d missed that in my first read.

    Time123 (653992)

  49. The IG report noted it could not question Comey because Comey was no longer an employee of the FBI…

    Where did it note that? Comey said he cooperated with the IG. The report said that Comey was interviewed. The weird thing in the report is that you can do all kinds of word searches, but not for “Comey”.

    Paul Montagu (c32cf0)

  50. Never mind. Found it. Still weird about the word searches.

    Paul Montagu (c32cf0)

  51. No sentient being wants the corrupt criminal traitor cretin Trump for President. If Deep State was out to deep-six him, I praise them and thank them for all their efforts on behalf of our country and for the human race. I am only sorry that they did not succeed.

    (I apologize for the double post, but everybody on this thread seems to be missing the forest for the trees.)

    nk (dbc370)

  52. Proof that this report is damning: My local left wing newspaper totally ignored it. Not one news article.

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  53. “ If Deep State was out to deep-six him, I praise them and thank them for all their efforts”

    I praise you for admitting it.
    __ _

    Robby Soave
    @robbysoave
    The FBI got important information wrong over and over again but still spied and snooped as much as it wanted… How is this good news for the FBI?
    __ _

    Kris Kinder
    @kris_kinder
    ·
    “Mistakes were made we will do better”
    __ _

    Libertarian Film
    @libertarianfilm
    ·
    It was the same with the Lois Lerner using the IRS to go after conservative groups, and experiencing “crashes” on six servers that destroyed the evidence. It was just a lot of “mistakes,” that’s all, no cover-up.
    __ _

    Jerry Bohl, Jr.
    @jr_bohl
    .
    …. and the Progressives STILL want to put them in charge of confiscating guns?

    __

    harkin (337580)

  54. Kim Strassel’s tweetstorm:

    1) Key findings of Horowitz report:
    –Yup, IG said FBI hit threshold for opening an investigation. But also goes out of its way to note what a “low threshold” this is. Durham’s statement made clear he will provide more info for Americans to make a judgment on reasonableness.

    2) The report is triumph for former House Intel Chair Devin Nunes, who first blew the whistle on FISA abuse. The report confirms all the elements of the February 2018 Nunes memo, which said dossier was as an “essential” part of applications, and FBI withheld info from FISA court

    3)Conversely, report is an excoriation of Adam Schiff and his “memo” of Feb 2018. That doc stated that “FBI and DOJ officials did NOT abuse the [FISA] process” or “omit material information.” Also claimed FBI didn’t much rely on dossier.

    4)In fact, IG report says dossier played “central and essential role” in getting FISA warrants. Schiff had access to same documents as Nunes, yet chose to misinform the public. This is the guy who just ran impeachment proceedings.

    5) Report is a devastating indictment of Steele, Fusion GPS and the “dossier.” Report finds that about the only thing FBI ever corroborated in that doc were publicly available times, places, title names. Ouch.

    6)IG finds 17 separate problems with FISA court submissions, including FBI’s overstatement of Steele’s credentials. Also the failure to provide court with exculpatory evidence and issues with Steele’s sources and additional info it got about Steele’s credibility.

    7) Every one of these “issues” is a story all on its own. Example: The FBI had tapes of Page and Papadopoulos making statements that were inconsistent with FBI’s own collusion theories. They did not provide these to the FISA court.

    8) Another example: FBI later got info from professional contacts with Steele who said he suffered from “lack of self awareness, poor judgement” and “pursued people” with “no intelligence value.” FBI also did not tell the court about these credibility concerns.

    9)And this: FBI failed to tell Court that Page was approved as an “operational contact” for another U.S. agency, and “candidly” reported his interactions with a Russian intel officer. FBI instead used that Russian interaction against Page, with no exculpatory detail.

    10)Overall, IG was so concerned by these “extensive compliance failures” that is has now initiated additional “oversight” to assess how FBI in general complies with “policies that seek to protect the civil liberties of U.S. persons.”

    11) Report also expressed concerns about FBI’s failure to present any of these issues to DOJ higher ups; its ongoing contacts with Steele after he was fired for talking to media; and its use of spies against the campaign without any DOJ input.

    12) Remember Comey telling us it was no big deal who paid for dossier? Turns out it was a big deal in FBI/DOJ, where one lawyer (Stuart Evans) expressed “concerns” it had been funded by Clinton/DNC. Because of his “consistent inquiries” we go that convoluted footnote.

    13) IG also slaps FBI for using what was supposed to be a baseline briefing for the Trump campaign of foreign intelligence threats as a surreptitious opportunity to investigate Flynn.

    14) Finally, intriguing just how many people at the FBI don’t remember anything about anything. Highly convenient.

    15)Last point. When IG says he found no “documentary” evidence of bias, he means just that: He didn’t find smoking gun email that says “let’s take out Trump.” And it isn’t his job to guess at the motivations of FBI employees. Instead…

    16) He straightforwardly lays out facts. Those facts produce a pattern of FBI playing the FISA Court–overstating some info, omitting other info, cherrypicking details. Americans can look at totality and make their own judgment as to “why” FBI behaved in such a manner.

    Her oped is here (behind paywall):
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/a-trail-of-fbi-abuse-11575938300?shareToken=st64c149b436bb463e8aa02a65e112095a

    whembly (c30c83)

  55. “The Inspector General’s report now makes clear that the FBI launched an intrusive investigation of a U.S. presidential campaign on the thinnest of suspicions that, in my view, were insufficient to justify the steps taken,” Barr said.

    The funny thing is, at the time, the Trump campaign denied, in the strongest possible terms, that Carter Page had anything to do with them:

    Trump camp backs away from adviser suspected of Kremlin ties

    Donald Trump’s campaign is denying any connection to a man that it previously named as a foreign policy adviser, who is reportedly being investigated for alleged ties to the Kremlin.

    Trump in March included Carter Page — an investment banker who had worked in the Moscow branch of Merrill Lynch for several years — on a list of foreign policy advisers.

    But Friday, after Yahoo News reported that Page was being investigated for allegedly meeting with Kremlin officials over the summer, a Trump campaign spokesman denied that Page had ever been part of the campaign.

    “Mr. Page is not an advisor and has made no contribution to the campaign,” the campaign’s communications director Jason Miller said in an email to The Hill. “I’ve never spoken to him, and wouldn’t recognize him if he were sitting next to me.”

    Presented with a statement from a campaign spokesperson in August that characterized Page as an “informal adviser,” albeit one who “does not speak for Mr. Trump or the campaign,” Miller doubled down.

    “He’s never been a part of our campaign. Period,” he said.

    Another spokesman, Steven Cheung, said Page “has no role” in the campaign.

    “We are not aware of any of his activities, past or present,” Cheung added.

    (emphasis added)

    If you were trying to “investigate a U.S. presidential campaign,” wouldn’t you investigate someone who was actually, uh, involved with it?

    In truth, Barr’s description of this as “an investigation of a political campaign” is a flat-out lie whose sole purpose is to keep the faithful in the desired state of perpetual grievance and perceived persecution.

    Dave (1bb933)

  56. Rachel Bovard
    @rachelbovard
    ·
    Today we learned that the gov’t can easily manipulate info to justify surveillance on you. And also, the gov’t lied to us for years about the war in Afghanistan while spending a trillion dollars and sending our friends and family to die there.

    Banner day.
    __ _

    Meanwhile……

    Paul Sperry
    @paulsperry_
    BREAKING: ABC, NBC and CBS all switch back to regular programming, stop covering impeachment hearings live as Republican committee members show video evidence of Biden & son’s quid pro quo and lay out reasons House is investigating the wrong man

    __ _

    harkin (337580)

  57. ‘The funny thing is, at the time, the Trump campaign denied, in the strongest possible terms, that Carter Page had anything to do with them
    ….
    In truth, Barr’s description of this as “an investigation of a political campaign” is a flat-out lie whose sole purpose is to keep the faithful in the desired state of perpetual grievance and perceived persecution.’
    Dave (1bb933) — 12/9/2019 @ 6:55 pm

    It’s a lie, because the Trump campaign is truthful. Awesome!

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  58. …. and the Progressives STILL want to put them in charge of confiscating guns?

    Why should a man who has a gun worry about somebody confiscating it? If you’re scared that somebody can take your gun away, you’re probably not the kind of person who should have one in the first place.

    And let me tell you something else, folks. Until 2016, the corrupt criminal traitor cretin Trump believed that the only people who should have guns are the ones who could afford to “donate” $100,000 to the New York Police Department Athletic League, and that’s a fact you can take to Deutsche Bank.

    Cute squirrel, though.

    nk (dbc370)

  59. What’s this– the third multi-hundred page report this year from these bureaucratic jerkoffs?

    Imagine. The tale of a trillion dollar, now 18 year long war, sold to Americans AGAIN by a pack of lying jackals being relegated to a below-the-fold story– thanks to the paper jockeying, idiotic infighting between two major political parties who fail to compromise and which fewer and fewer voters actually belong to. Neither representing the best interests of the U.S., just the few special interests who bought them. Imagine no more. They’ve done more damage to America in the past four decades than any adversary could have dreamed. This year Pair-Of-Deuces-Putin isn’t just smiling– he’s laughing.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  60. 54/@59. Apparently neither of you have seen that video of the real nutty squirrel doing dry mass shooting runs in San Diego who was tipped to the coppers. ‘Course he hasn’t actually committed any shooting crime — he insists the video, made in a SD hotel room- was just “art” — from his jail cell after arrest.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  61. Gun laws are a filter for the harmless.

    nk (dbc370)

  62. “16) He straightforwardly lays out facts. Those facts produce a pattern of FBI playing the FISA Court–overstating some info, omitting other info, cherrypicking details. Americans can look at totality and make their own judgment as to “why” FBI behaved in such a manner.”

    lol

    Davethulhu (fe4242)

  63. I agree with you about the “bureaucratic jerkoffs” and their make-work to justify their phony-baloney jobs, at the same time that the corrupt criminal traitor cretin is cutting off food stamps to the unemployed.

    nk (dbc370)

  64. Nobody calling this a complete exoneration of the FBI yet?

    Jerryskids (702a61)

  65. Comey has proven himself to be either a liar or a fool. Reading the IG report, he’s the most clueless Director of the FBI – ever. Just signed off on FISA warrants without even reading them. So he says.
    Just let his low level staffers investigate Trump without really caring what was going on. So he says. Steele dossier? Never heard of it.

    To Comey that’s vindication.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  66. Yeah the FBI are “Bureaucrats” Like the Army and Navy. Just Government workers – with guns. Fat, lazy soldiers. They need the discipline of the Free Market. And If only we had a private enterprise FBI looking for a “for profit” everything would be OK.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  67. UPDATE BY PATTERICO: I thank Dana for writing this post. I lack the energy to weigh in at length. I think Allahpundit sums up the whole thing best: “Today the dominant emotion in every major player in this saga should be humility, but we can’t find an ounce of it among them collectively.”

    I predicted long ago that the IG would find the investigation was properly predicated. I also predicted that it would find mistakes by the FBI, because (as I said) an IG always finds mistakes. But I admit to being surprised and dismayed at the extent of the FBI’s failures to disclose important information in the Page FISA applications.

    This reminds me in some ways of the Mueller report. Because of the wild and absurd heightened expectations by partisans (Trump was engaged in an active criminal conspiracy with Russia! The FBI planned a coup), the big headline ends up being that the absurd expectations didn’t pan out. If the media gave us the “collusion hoax” then Trump gave us the “coup hoax” and even though no sane person believed either, the big story ends up being that the hoax is a hoax. But in each case, the big dopey headline obscures what should be the real story. For the Mueller report, the real story should have been Trump’s rampant corrupt obstruction. For the IG report, the real story should be an incredibly slipshod and unprofessional handling of a critical FISA application — and that description is being very charitable.

    Trump has spent three years undermining the rule of law. If the IG is to be believed, the FBI just contributed its own heaping helping of reasons to worry about the rule of law.

    Where, again, is the humility?

    Patterico (115b1f)

  68. I don’t know if he is still reading, but I just unmoderated Haiku and narciso. Haiku asked a while back where I would be when the IG report came out. I’m right here, and you can be too. I made some correct predictions but so did he. We both got some things wrong too. If Comey and Trump can’t show humility, or even basic honesty, let’s show them we can do better here.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  69. This place sure is more enjoyable with the Col. and narciso.

    mg (8cbc69)

  70. And happyfeet.

    mg (8cbc69)

  71. I’d bet dollars to donuts horrowitz and wray have finished a couple bottles of 1959 Dom Perignon after releasing the report.

    mg (8cbc69)

  72. rip Pete Frates
    ice bucket challenge for ALS was a huge hit

    mg (8cbc69)

  73. Patterico, good comment on the post.

    Time123 (b0628d)

  74. @45,

    You said “McCabe sat on the emails found on Carlos Danger’s laptop, and more honest types in the FBI took note. This forced the leak,”

    it’s clear that McCabe leaked information. There’s no evidence that it was to cover up misdeeds on his part and it’s just as likely he was motivated to protect his reputation at the expense of Hillary Clinton.

    Once again, your claims are backed up by available evidence.

    Time123 (b0628d)

  75. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is introducing the Chairs of various committees. I think she called Adam Schiff the Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee! C BS started pre-coverage; NBC, which had te TODAY show on, a regular segment, did not break in until later.

    There will be two impeachment articles; Abuse of power, meaning that Donald Trump used the powers of
    his office for personal gain, and Obstruction of Congress.

    Nadler speaks first. He says Trump sees himself as above the law.

    Sammy Finkelman (fb61e5)

  76. Nadler spoke alittle and introduced Schiff, who spoke a little, in general terms about what the aticles were and how they can’t wait (court proceedings take time and then other privilege can be claimed and more delay) and this would allow Trump to cheat in another election by seeking foreign help.

    And then, when Schiff finished speaking, they left the room. The other chairs didn’t speak – they were just there for decoration. And they didn’t take any questions.

    Sammy Finkelman (fb61e5)

  77. 75. Time123 (b0628d) — 12/10/2019 @ 4:52 am

    it’s clear that McCabe leaked information. There’s no evidence that it was to cover up misdeeds on his part and it’s just as likely he was motivated to protect his reputation at the expense of Hillary Clinton.

    That’s what it was. He wanted to pretend to have wanted a further investigation of Hillary. But that could have been to cover up the fact that his attitude was the exact opposite.

    Sammy Finkelman (fb61e5)

  78. 27. Time123 (d54166) — 12/9/2019 @ 3:28 pm

    The prosecutor in question was fired because he was corrupt and was not investigating wrongdoing.

    That’s probably correct – Viktor Shokin had already stalled investigations related to Burisma (and much else) but it isn’t solidly established as true. And of course the spin given to Trump (and accepted by the Wall Street Journal editoral board within the past few days) was that he was. Although he told Giuliani in a phone call on January 23, 2019 that he’d stopped the investigations the previous year (2015) because of the pre-Yovanovich U.S. Ambassador, Geoffrey R. Pyatt, who told him to be very careful (that it had to be handled with kid gloves) and he says he decided to just do nothing because of that.

    https://nypost.com/2019/10/02/ex-ukraine-prosecutor-claims-he-was-told-to-back-off-biden-linked-firm-probe-report

    This is kind of different from contemporary reports

    https://www.rferl.org/a/us-ambassador-upbraids-ukraine-over-corruption-efforts/27271294.html

    He called for an investigation of officials within the Prosecutor-General’s Office who he says stymied efforts to pursue tens of millions of dollars in “illicit assets” that former Ukrainian official Mykola Zlochevskiy held in Britain.

    Giuliani went to Ukraine this past week to see him to get an update or clarification of his story.

    Sammy Finkelman (fb61e5)

  79. It could have been. But no evidence of that has been presented. No peers told the IG that they had confronted him about sitting on the laptop. No text messages between other agents stating that suspicion or even complaining that it was taking too long.

    Time123 (b0628d)

  80. President Trump tweets today:

    “I don’t know what report current Director of the FBI Christopher Wray was reading, but it sure wasn’t the one given to me. With that kind of attitude, he will never be able to fix the FBI…”

    Once again…. if he can’t turn you into his vampire, he will just have to eliminate you.

    noel (f22371)

  81. For an Administration that endlessly claims that they aren’t being treated “fairly”, they sure do like to demand that investigations align with their pre-determined results. Or else.

    AG Barr is a quick study.

    noel (f22371)

  82. I don’t know what report current Director of the FBI Christopher Wray was reading, but it sure wasn’t the one given to me.

    Ha, ha, ha ……ha!
    You don’t know what report ANYBODY was reading, you corrupt criminal traitor, because YOU did not read it either, you illiterate cretin.

    nk (dbc370)

  83. Barr said: “The F.B.I. launched an intrusive investigation of a U.S. presidential campaign on the thinnest of suspicions that, in my view, were insufficient to justify the steps taken,”

    Thinnest of suspicions? Now that’s funny. Barr and Rudy have spent a year running around the world trying to validate Russian conspiracy theories.

    noel (f22371)

  84. ”Once again, your claims are backed up by available evidence.”
    Time123 (b0628d) — 12/10/2019 @ 4:52 am

    Thanks for the kudos!

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  85. It wasn’t Russia. It was Ukraine! That is what they want us to believe.

    Because a couple leaders in Ukraine didn’t care for Trump’s pro-Russia political campaign? Somehow that is equivalent to Russia systematically interfering in the 2016 election. All of the Trump Administration’s own intelligence agencies say Russia did it but no… it’s Ukraine!

    noel (f22371)

  86. The more I think about it, the focus of most of the commentary is on the wrong issue.

    An “investigation” can mean no more than searching through public records (of which there are now plenty easily available because of the internet), and talking to people willing to talk to you. Journalists can conduct an “investigation.” You could investigate me by reviewing my firm’s website, Googling my name, and reviewing the cases I have been involved in. The standard for that is appropriately low.

    It is where you get a warrant to tap someone’s phones and otherwise go through their private affairs – which, let us not forget, is protected by the Fourth Amendment – that there is a heightened need for scrutiny and honesty. That is in fact what the Fourth Amendment demands “probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation” and issued by a neutral magistrate.

    The FBI mislead a secret court to get information protected by the Fourth Amendment. If that is not viewed as serious wrongdoing, regardless of whether they were out to get the Orange man or just overzealous, then our Constitutional system is in trouble.

    Bored Lawyer (998177)

  87. noel @86. Thing is, noel, you see, the daffodil can take on Ukraine which is already under attack by Putin. The cowardly bully boy cannot take on Putin. Heck, he (and it’s doubtful ze deserves the pronoun) can’t even take on Putin, Erdogan, Kim, or the Taliban. Because he is an overcooked noodle, a cowardly weakling who knows that the secret to winning is to pick fights only with those who are weaker than you.

    nk (dbc370)

  88. The more I think about it, the focus of most of the commentary is on the wrong issue.

    It is. That’s because Trump and his army of idiots oversold the likely conclusion: THEY WILL PROVE IT WAS A COUP!!!

    As I said, it’s like the folks in the media who wildly oversold Mueller’s likely conclusion as TRUMP IS A KNOWING AND PAID RUSSIAN AGENT!! Then, when the report details areas of troubling behavior, people ignore it because the headline is: Your Wild Speculation About What This Report Would Show Turned Out To Be Wrong.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  89. “It is. That’s because Trump and his army of idiots oversold the likely conclusion: THEY WILL PROVE IT WAS A COUP!!!”

    Viva le Straw Man.

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  90. Even if they could get all Senate Democrats and half of Republican Senators to vote to convict and remove Trump, there’d still be a President Pence in the White House.

    That’s one stupid “coup”.

    noel (f22371)

  91. Forget Trump for a moment. I know, I know, it’s like the ache of hemorrhoids. But focus.

    Look at what this report, and the earlier OIG report, say about the FBI. Look at the blatant errors (if not actual bias). The IG report is talking about doing an audit on Woods procedures, going back fifteen years. FIFTEEN YEARS. Do you think that looks good for the fibbies?

    Whether you have Donald Trump’s face tattooed on your chest or you use a picture of him for a dartboard, the damage done to the FBI’s credibility is astonishing. Couple this with the Whitehurst lab scandal, and I’m amazed we get any convictions with fed involvement.

    Capsaicin Addict (041266)

  92. 5. The ask wasn’t to investigate, it was to announce an investigation.

    The ask on July 25 was most definitely for an investigation.

    https://www.whitehouse.gov/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/Unclassified09.2019.pdf

    The other thing: There’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great. Biden went around bragging that he stopped the prosecution so if you can look into it [mentions a recording, according to Vindman] … It sounds horrible to me.

    And it was pointed out yesterday by the Democratic counsel that Zelensky had actually agreed to this in the call, as I have been saying. In fact he said before the call (and I should say to everything that Trump seemed to want)

    I will personally tell you that one of my assistants spoke with Mr. Giuliani just recently and we are hoping very much that Mr. Giuliani will be able to travel to Ukraine and we will meet once he comes to Ukraine. I just wanted to assure you once again that you have nobody but friends around us. I will make sure that I surround myself with the best and most experienced people. [because Trump had a third issue, besides 2016 and Biden, the issue of bad people in the Ukrainian government, which has been mostly overlooked, although the Republican Intelligence committee counsel stated to get into it yesterday] I also wanted to tell you that we are friends. We are great friends and you Mr. President have friends in our country so we can continue our strategic partnership. I also plan to surround myself with great people and in addition to that investigation, I guarantee as the President of Ukraine that all the investigations will be done openly and candidly. Trump wanted investigations – not announcements!

    Where does that come from? You see, on August 12/13 Giuliani was asking for an announcement but not as a substitute for an actual investigation. The idea, if anythng was just to lock the Ulrainian government into doing an investigation (not necessarily or at all criminal) of the Ukraine 2016 intervention and Biden-fired-the-prosecutor-investigating-Burisma allegations.

    It was only in early September that Gordon Sondland came up with the idea of an announcement as sufficient.

    The Democrats have to say that Trump didn’t want an actual investigation because they want to remove the defense that he had a sincere, if possibly or probably mistaken, belief that Joe Biden had acted corruptly to protect Burisma.

    If true, that then would be of more than personal interest to Donald Trump. And sincere belief is a defense.

    Sammy Finkelman (fb61e5)

  93. @90 you’ve been commenting for a while now about how they’re out to get Trump and Misurd and it’s a political hit job. At no point has any investigation backed up your claims. They’ve showed the FBI to be bad at protecting our rights, but haven’t found the animus that you’ve been alleging.

    Time123 (a7a01b)

  94. Hey Dana, a request:

    Please do a post about the news media’s collective meltdown on the new Eastwood film Richard Jewell.

    There seems to be an orchestrated attempt to convince people not to watch it.

    harkin (337580)

  95. @Patterico & BL, another problem is that Trump, his allies, and their supporters don’t seem to care, at all, about systemic reform. The abuses of process by the FBI are a problem ONLY so far as they negatively impact Trump. Absent that, Trump is silent and his supporters are fine with the complete lack of action in this area.

    also, sorry about my Typo in 94.

    Time123 (a7a01b)

  96. Now we have to ask another question: If President Zelensky was so ready to agree to an investigation into Burisma, why then didn’t he go ahead?

    The answer is that Acting Ambassador William Taylor intervened and said Ukraine had, and needed to keep, bipartisan support in the United States, and they shouldn’t anger the Democrats.

    So now Zelensky has stopped, for the moment, any inquiry into Burisma:

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/ukraine-president-holds-back-on-probe-linked-to-impeachment-inquiry-11575490990

    Ukraine President Holds Back on Probe Linked to Impeachment Inquiry
    Politicians, officials say

    Volodymyr Zelensky wants to avoid getting country more caught up in U.S. politics

    By Thomas Grove
    Dec. 4, 2019 3:23 pm ET

    … For the Zelensky administration, Burisma and the allegations around it have become so wound up in U.S. politics that it has decided to hold off taking any actions for now, fearing proceeding would damage Ukraine’s bipartisan support in Washington, according to officials and other politicians.

    “Burisma has become so political, that unlike other similar situations, upholding the rule of law has its costs,” said Igor Novikov, adviser to Mr. Zelensky on U.S. affairs.

    Members of the Hose Judiciary Committee seem to get the New York Times, but they don’t look so much at the Wall Street Journal. They;’re slow, all of them, and the counsels also, at getting the facts.

    Sammy Finkelman (fb61e5)

  97. Time123 @96. This is correct. Of course they may think people associated with Trump were the only ones ever harmed by a bad FISA process. The FBI Director though, seems to be thinking of making a few modifications in what they do.

    Sammy Finkelman (fb61e5)

  98. 6. There’s no evidence submitted yet that the white house was actually interested in fighting corruption. They’ll say it on the news, but no one has testified to it under oath.

    According to Sondland, Trump told him in early September that Zelensky himself should want these investigations.

    Sammy Finkelman (fb61e5)

  99. 91. noel (f22371) — 12/10/2019 @ 8:05 am

    That’s one stupid “coup”.

    But it might help Joe Biden.

    Sammy Finkelman (fb61e5)

  100. Sammy, you wrote

    Where does that come from? You see, on August 12/13 Giuliani was asking for an announcement but not as a substitute for an actual investigation. The idea, if anythng was just to lock the Ulrainian government into doing an investigation (not necessarily or at all criminal) of the Ukraine 2016 intervention and Biden-fired-the-prosecutor-investigating-Burisma allegations.

    Is there evidence submitted to support the part in bold? Testimony or documentary evidence? It contradicts sworn testimony and while it might be plausible, if it’s true there should be supporting evidence. Absent that I’m gong to place credence on sworn testimony when there’s a conflict. rump has in the past praised subordinates for stating that it’s OK to lie to the media. Given that there’s no reason to accept un-sworn statements when there’s no good reason they couldn’t testify under oath.

    I’m not trying to be snarky, you have a lot of detail about these issues. But from what I’ve seen the evidence supports that the request for an investigation was a pretext to get an announcement that would be damaging to Trump’s political rival.

    Look at what the big theme the low bar to start an investigation in the FBI is in the IG report? You’re telling me that you actually believe that if Trump wanted an investigation for legitimate reasons he couldn’t get the DOJ to start one?

    Time123 (a7a01b)

  101. It is. That’s because Trump and his army of idiots oversold the likely conclusion: THEY WILL PROVE IT WAS A COUP!!!

    @Patterico & BL, another problem is that Trump, his allies, and their supporters don’t seem to care, at all, about systemic reform. The abuses of process by the FBI are a problem ONLY so far as they negatively impact Trump. Absent that, Trump is silent and his supporters are fine with the complete lack of action in this area

    This may all be true, but why should that matter. Is everything now to be evaluated on whether it helps or hurts Trump? Is the agenda set by Trump and his coterie?

    As far as I can see, the Constitution was raped. That should be cause for alarm, whether or not bias against Trump was involved.

    Bored Lawyer (998177)

  102. @102 BL, I think we agree. My point is that Trump and his supporters don’t care about that.

    Time123 (b0628d)

  103. Hey Dana, a request:

    Please do a post about the news media’s collective meltdown on the new Eastwood film Richard Jewell.

    There seems to be an orchestrated attempt to convince people not to watch it.

    harkin (337580) — 12/10/2019 @ 8:15 am

    I’ll be seeing it this weekend. First movie I’ve gone to see in a while.

    NJRob (4d595c)

  104. There was also a book written about the Richard Jewell case, reviewed in the Wall Street Journal

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-suspect-review-collateral-damage-11573515975

    Intensively reported and fluidly written, “The Suspect” details the yearslong search for the real killer. It’s the work of Kent Alexander, who was the U.S. attorney in Atlanta at the time of the crime, and Kevin Salwen, a former Wall Street Journal correspondent, and it is a cautionary tale about the fallibility of the storied feds, the role of luck in breaking big cases, and the conflicted choices faced by the media even at the dawn of the digital age.

    Sammy Finkelman (fb61e5)

  105. “As far as I can see, the Constitution was raped. That should be cause for alarm, whether or not bias against Trump was involved.”

    This sort of thing happens all the time. Why wasn’t it a problem before now? What remedies have been proposed? Trump and Trump supporters only care because Trump was caught up, and will cease to care once things have moved on.

    Davethulhu (fab944)

  106. “ the role of luck in breaking big cases,”

    I will never forget the neighborhood dragnet and search for the Boston Marathon Bomber, with cops screaming at locals while they worked house to house, to not drop their hands or they would shoot them.

    Meanwhile, outside the search perimeter, the bomber was caught because a lady looking out her window saw someone climbing in to a covered boat in her backyard.

    harkin (337580)

  107. ”This sort of thing happens all the time.”
    Davethulhu (fab944) — 12/10/2019 @ 10:26 am

    Like, for example….?

    Munroe (4ae3dd)

  108. “Like, for example….?”

    The vast majority of FISA warrants are granted. Do you think the government was uniquely sloppy in regards to Carter Page?

    Davethulhu (fab944)

  109. ”The vast majority of FISA warrants are granted. Do you think the government was uniquely sloppy in regards to Carter Page?”
    Davethulhu (fab944) — 12/10/2019 @ 12:09 pm

    Yes — but let’s assume No.

    The point, of course, which you’ve just verified is that they didn’t necessarily need to be sloppy.

    And sorry, but FISA warrants that get an opposition campaign “caught up” (your words) do not “happen all the time.”

    Munroe (4ae3dd)

  110. @110

    I think you missed this part

    We concluded that AD Priestap’s exercise of
    discretion in opening the investigation was in compliance with Department and FBI
    policies, and we did not find documentary or testimonial evidence that political bias
    or improper motivation influenced his decision
    . While the information in the FBI’s
    possession at the time was limited, in light of the low threshold established by
    Department and FBI predication policy, we found that Crossfire Hurricane was
    opened for an authorized investigative purpose and with sufficient factual
    predication
    .

    Time123 (cd2ff4)

  111. Barr’s full statement said not one word about Putin and his “sweeping and systematic” efforts to attack our election, which is why his statement is fundamentally misleading. It was less an investigation into the Trump campaign and more about Putin and whether or not he infiltrated the Trump campaign, and it’s fairly incredible that he would say “no” to something like Operation Crossfire Hurricane, given the breadth of Putin actually. Barr has only made it clearer that he’s prioritizing Trump over our national security.
    And Barr only made it worse when he contradicted the IG by insinuating that the FBI did its work in bad faith, undermining and bad-mouthing an organization and its 37,000 employess. It’s contemptible and condemnable. Barr is a sh*tty American.

    Paul Montagu (055027)

  112. Time123 (cd2ff4) — 12/10/2019 @ 1:04 pm

    That’s the fun and exciting part of prosecutorial discretion, isn’t it?

    You have a low threshold that would justify investigations of a vast pool of individuals, and you get to pick and choose. And if you choose person A, and take a pass on person B — hey, threshold met, no bias!

    Tell me Time123, go back three years (before all the texts, the dossier, etc.) and tell me what you would’ve said a biased investigation would look like. I’m truly interested.

    Munroe (4ae3dd)

  113. Ben Wittes reminds us that the complaints–from Trump on down–about the FBI’s work wasn’t about procedural errors and the sloppy use of evidence, it was a LOT worse (link).

    They were about whether the FBI’s Russia investigation was a malicious “WITCH HUNT!”:
    ● The president repeatedly accused FBI officials of “treason”—and of plotting a coup.
    ● Citing a text from Peter Strzok to Lisa Page, he declared that the Russia investigation was an “insurance policy” against his election—and that the texts between them revealed the deep political bias that drove the entire investigation.
    ● The attorney general warned darkly of FBI “spying” on the Trump campaign and publicly questioned whether the Russia investigation was properly predicated.
    ● A veritable industry arose suggesting that the investigation began earlier than the FBI acknowledged, an industry the attorney general personally helped cultivate.
    ● The president suggested that his wires had been tapped, even as Devin Nunes insisted that the FBI was engaged in illegal surveillance of Carter Page.
    ● We were assured of scandal related to the FBI’s use of confidential informants, just as we were assured that the entire investigation was predicated on the “dossier” of Christopher Steele.

    All of that was debunked by the IG.

    Paul Montagu (055027)

  114. “All of that was debunked by the IG.”
    Paul Montagu (055027) — 12/10/2019 @ 1:47 pm

    If only.

    But hey… exoneration(!!), eh? You with me, Paul?

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  115. “Tell me Time123, go back three years (before all the texts, the dossier, etc.) and tell me what you would’ve said a biased investigation would look like. I’m truly interested.”

    Let me turn this around on you. Knowing all the contact that Trump campaign officials had with Russia, what would an unbiased investigation look like?

    Davethulhu (fab944)

  116. @113, The bias you asked about? They didn’t find evidence of it. If the evidence comes up later I’m happy to change my opinion, but if there was a conspiracy against trump for political reasons I’d expect some evidence.

    Are you open to the possibility that this is how Cops treat people (in this case Carter Page) that they think are guilty and not anything special about Trump?

    Honestly trying to answer your question with limited time.

    Time123 (d54166)

  117. ”Let me turn this around on you. Knowing all the contact that Trump campaign officials had with Russia, what would an unbiased investigation look like?”
    Davethulhu (fab944) — 12/10/2019 @ 2:22 pm

    So, now this sort of thing doesn’t “happen all the time”? Make up your mind.

    They could’ve found a pretext to investigate any campaign, certainly Clinton’s and Sanders’. An unbiased investigation would not focus on one only.

    You can answer my question now.

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  118. ‘Trump has spent three years undermining the rule of law…’

    Three years??

    Where ‘ya been? Trump’s been undermining, circumventing, bending, compromising and breaking the ‘rule of law’ in all walks of life – be it in civil society or simple family discipline dictums from Daddy, military school commandants or banking regs– even wedding vows, all his life.

    He’s “the bad boy everybody loves or to loves to hate:” JR Ewing. Better people than those who work in Congress have tried to reign him in.

    Catch him if you can– but he’s gonna beat the rap[s.] And remember, he carries grudges.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  119. But hey… exoneration(!!), eh? You with me, Paul?

    Well, if I had to choose between your whatabouting and you putting words in my mouth, I’ll take the former, because then at least you’re not making sh*t up.

    Paul Montagu (055027)

  120. @118, the did investigate Clinton’s campaign and they did so in a way that likely impacted the election.

    Time123 (d54166)

  121. “So, now this sort of thing doesn’t “happen all the time”? Make up your mind.”

    I’ll use small words.
    1) The Trump campaign was in contact with Russia.
    2) The FISA courts are rubber stamps.
    3) FISA court actions are secret.
    Therefore
    4) It’s routine to surveil anyone who has “questionable” contacts, because the bar is low and nobody will find out if you’re wrong.

    “They could’ve found a pretext to investigate any campaign, certainly Clinton’s and Sanders’. An unbiased investigation would not focus on one only.
    You can answer my question now.”

    You are assuming that launching an investigation is inherently biased, which isn’t true.

    Davethulhu (fab944)

  122. ”the did investigate Clinton’s campaign and they did so in a way that likely impacted the election.”
    Time123 (d54166) — 12/10/2019 @ 3:16 pm

    This is a tired argument, and a whaddabout.

    (And anyway, the choices were 1) indict or 2) announce “no prosecutor would bring such a case”. Which one worked out better for Hillary? Was there a third choice?)

    We’re talking about foreign ties to campaigns, and an investigation predicated on that. This was focused on one campaign when any or all could’ve been investigated.

    You haven’t answered my question about what a biased investigation would look like. Paint me a picture.

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  123. All this “How many angels can dance on the head of a pin?”, or is it “How many Cossacks can dance on an orange?” Convicted international money launderer Manafort and cretin Junior bringing Russian government agent Natalia Veselnnitskaya to Trump Tower in hopes of getting dirt on Hillary gave the FBI probable cause to stage a full-out SWAT raid on “the Trump campaign”. And shoot its dog.

    nk (dbc370)

  124. This is a tired argument, and a whaddabout.

    No, it’s a direct reply to the question you asked about investigating Clinton or Sanders. You asked, I answered.

    I’ll answer your question.

    You haven’t answered my question about what a biased investigation would look like. Paint me a picture.

    It would have testimony and / or documentary evidence showing bias.
    It would fail to meet the standards to start an investigation.
    It would show that the biased investigators fabricated the evidence upon which the investigation was predicated or that there was no such evidence.

    Now, my question was; “Are you open to the idea that this is how cops treat you when they think you’re guilty and not specific to Trump?” Meaning they cut corners and ignore holes in their case / exculpatory evidence.

    Time123 (d54166)

  125. David French, per The Dispatch (no link):

    The first three years of the Trump era have featured two lengthy investigations that sought to answer two previously unthinkable questions. First, did a Republican presidential campaign actively conspire with a hostile foreign power in the quest to win an election? Second, did the nation’s leading law enforcement agency engineer a bad-faith, politicized criminal investigation of that Republican candidate in the effort to depose him if he won?
    According to the Mueller Report, the answer to the first question is, “No, but his team did try to obtain the help of Russians and Russian assets.” And now, according to the Horowitz report, the answer is “No, but the investigation process was so flawed that we need to audit the entire FBI FISA process.”
    Feel better?

    It’s not a good thing when the errors are so bad in a “profoundly sensitive and high-profile investigation” that the IG’s next job is to audit the “entire FBI FISA process”. We can actually thank the Mueller investigation that started all this.

    Can we learn any lessons from this debacle? For one, I have renewed gratitude for Rod Rosenstein’s decision to appoint a special counsel. The FBI was floundering. By putting the investigation in Mueller’s hands, Rosenstein was able to establish a credible process that was largely free of the taint of the FBI’s misdeeds.
    In fact, Carter Page was ultimately an afterthought in the Mueller report. He was a minor figure in the campaign. The truly troubling conduct came through much more senior people: Manafort, Donald Trump Jr., Michael Cohen, and Trump’s longtime friend and informal adviser, Roger Stone.
    It’s also time to consider FISA reform. Americans should be alarmed at the FBI’s errors, and we have no grounds to merely trust that law enforcement agencies will consistently safeguard civil liberties. Yes, there are many, many good people in the FBI who do their jobs with excellence. But the inspector general report demonstrates that this is not always the case. Greater legal restriction is necessary.
    Finally, can America’s primary voters please choose better nominees? During the 2016 campaign season, both Hillary Clinton and the Donald Trump campaign were under valid, lawful FBI investigations. This placed the FBI in a terrible bind (though that does not excuse its missteps) and guaranteed a toxic beginning to a new presidency no matter who won. Character matters, and voters should impose character tests on candidates.

    There’s not a lot to like when it comes to Rosenstein, but he did land the plane. The GOP made its bed on our 2020 nominee, and I’m not optimistic about who the Dems will pick. It’ll be Giant Douche v. Turd Sandwich 2.0.

    Paul Montagu (00daa1)

  126. ‘Now, my question was; “Are you open to the idea that this is how cops treat you when they think you’re guilty and not specific to Trump?” Meaning they cut corners and ignore holes in their case / exculpatory evidence.’
    Time123 (d54166) — 12/10/2019 @ 3:56 pm

    No. Since you don’t think the Hillary investigation is a whaddabout: Was the reason they cut corners for her because they didn’t think she was guilty?

    The IG investigated both. In a vacuum, they can both be contorted into unbiased investigations. Taken together, that stance is ludicrous.

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  127. David French at The Dispatch = Treadmill To Oblivion by Fred Allen.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  128. @129

    1. I think we’re using ‘whatabout’ differently. When I use the term I mean it in this way

    Whataboutism, also known as whataboutery, is a variant of the tu quoque logical fallacy that attempts to discredit an opponent’s position by charging them with hypocrisy without directly addressing, refuting or disproving their argument.

    2. The latest IG report needs no analysis or contortion to say that if found no bias in the decision to launch the investigation. It makes that conclusion directly more than once.

    3. Your position seems un-falsifiable. Two separate investigations failed to prove your assertion. Now you’re combining them and saying that together they support your assertion.

    Time123 (d54166)

  129. Time123 (d54166) — 12/10/2019 @ 5:57 pm

    You didn’t answer my question.

    Was the reason they cut corners for her because they didn’t think she was guilty?

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  130. I don’t know and I don’t feel like researching to come up with an opinion.

    Time123 (d54166)

  131. time123,

    I can’t recall a single instance Munroe answered one of my questions directly, and not with some sarcastic whatabout. It’s very amusing to see Munroe assume the mantle of Grand Inquisitor.

    Trump will certainly not be convicted by the GOP, and then we get to hear that he was ‘exonerated’. Same crap we heard when Mueller’s report showed Trump committed so many crimes but couldn’t be indicted.

    Dustin (cafb36)

  132. ”I don’t know and I don’t feel like researching to come up with an opinion.”
    Time123 (d54166) — 12/10/2019 @ 6:22 pm

    Yeah, that would be a tough one.

    Strzok altered the language so as to justify dismissing the charges against Hillary.

    Kevin “Viva le Resistance” Clinesmith altered a document on a Carter Page FISA renewal.

    Hard to square both with your @127. Best not to try.

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  133. “Strzok altered the language so as to justify dismissing the charges against Hillary.”

    Is Strzok responsible for Hillary not being indicted? Was Comey powerless to change it back?

    “Kevin “Viva le Resistance” Clinesmith altered a document on a Carter Page FISA renewal.”

    Would the FISA warrant have been refused if Clinesmith didn’t make the change?

    Davethulhu (fe4242)

  134. Why is it eternally “But Hillary…” with you guys.

    Why didn’t Trump indict Hillary like he promised?

    Davethulhu (fe4242)

  135. ”Is Strzok responsible for Hillary not being indicted? Was Comey powerless to change it back?
    Would the FISA warrant have been refused if Clinesmith didn’t make the change?”
    Davethulhu (fe4242) — 12/10/2019 @ 7:06 pm

    Comey wasn’t powerless. In fact, he went along. Your point?

    Hard to answer about the FISA warrant. If a cop plants evidence, does it matter whether the perp would’ve been arrested anyway? Why would you ask this?

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  136. @137: We’re back to whaddabout now. Sorry, lost track.

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  137. “In fact, he went along. Your point?”

    What’s your point? If Comey went along, what difference does it make who made the change?

    “Why would you ask this?”

    Try to keep up, I made this point @122.

    Davethulhu (fe4242)

  138. 2. The latest IG report needs no analysis or contortion to say that if found no bias in the decision to launch the investigation. It makes that conclusion directly more than once.

    Time123 (d54166) — 12/10/2019 @ 5:57 pm

    This is spin.

    Horowitz did not exonerate the Deep State at all… he merely found no documentary or testimonial evidence of an admission of bad faith or political bias, while finding oodles of other serious problems.

    That’s not the same as there is no bias…ever.

    I mean, the Obama DOJ leadership under investigation are not stupid. There isn’t going to be a smoking gun or documentary evidence that says “of course we’re doing this for political reasons”. I mean, give them some credit here…they wouldn’t straight-up admit to conspiracy to the IG. Ergo, the IG simply stated “No evidence found.”

    But the IG doesn’t “draw conclusions” in the same way as a prosecutor does using subpoenas and impaneled grand juries.

    But you and I (including Barr and Durnham for that matter!) can look at this and say: Man… if it walks like a duck… acts like a duck… then by golly its a duck!

    whembly (c30c83)

  139. “This is spin.

    Horowitz did not exonerate the Deep State at all… he merely found no documentary or testimonial evidence of an admission of bad faith or political bias, while finding oodles of other serious problems.”

    No, this is spin.

    Davethulhu (fe4242)

  140. 123. Munroe (dd6b64) — 12/10/2019 @ 3:31 pm

    (And anyway, the choices were 1) indict or 2) announce “no prosecutor would bring such a case”…Was there a third choice?)

    Yes, of course. Choice 3) would be: Don’t recommend a prosecution and don’t announce it.

    That would have allowed it to be speculated she could be indicted after the election – in fact that she could be elected and indicted after the election but before the inauguration.

    Choice 4) was announce the investigation is closed without saying anything more. That would have suggested a cover-up which would also be suspected of having been ordered from on high.

    Choice 2) was highly irregular. But Comey and Loretta Lynch pretended it was regular. This was what Bill and Hillary Clinton wanted, unless the investigation could not be closed. Then they’d prefer 5) continue the investigation in secret. Bill Clinton devised a test to tell him whether or not there was a RICO investigation going on: He’d arrange to accidentally get an opportunity to meet the Attorney General, and if she avoided him like the plague, it meant there was a RICO investigation going on (in which he would be a target of the investigation.) If she didn’t, it meant there was not because she would not have been warned not to meet him.

    A planned meeting she would always avoid, while a meeting at some event, she couldn’t avoid. Their planes being at an airport at the same time was perfect.

    It having been established that there was no RICO investigation going on, Hillary quickly agreed to an interview (this was just before it would be too close to the election to say anything) and Comey went public with his planned speech which had bee awaiting her FBI interview which she had constantly postponed till then.

    Later on, when Hillary emails were discovered t be on Anthony Weiner’s laptop (which got looked at because he was sexting with a North Carolina girl under 16) Comey was trapped by his promise to inform Congress if the investigation was re-opened. He re-opened it and then closed it again 3 days before the election. The emails were scanned without any human being looking at them, so if there was evidence of a crime there no one would see it.

    Then in May, 2017 Comey testified that the emails had been put on Anthony Weiner’s laptop by Huma Abedin in preparation for printing. This was not true: The FBI had to correct the testimony and the next thing you knew Trump fired Comey. But this turned out to be a coincidence.

    Sammy Finkelman (f1bb90)

  141. No, this is spin.

    Davethulhu (fe4242) — 12/10/2019 @ 8:46 pm

    IGs are not prosecutors. It isn’t his job to guess at the motivations of FBI employees. Only that he didn’t find smoking gun/documented evidence that says “we’re politically motivated to take out Trump.”

    Unfortunately only prosecutors could do that (ie, indictments) and a court trial to convict.

    So, yes, it *is* spin to to claim that the IG said there were no bias. It’s just that the IG (who doesn’t have subpoena power) didn’t find any documented bias.

    whembly (c30c83)

  142. #143

    Yes, of course. Choice 3) would be: Don’t recommend a prosecution and don’t announce it.

    Sammy Finkelman (f1bb90) — 12/10/2019 @ 9:16 pm

    That’s the proper action.

    Only reason to announce anything is to indict that subject of the investigation, and let the indictment tell the story. Otherwise… shut up.

    whembly (c30c83)

  143. “Yes, of course. Choice 3) would be: Don’t recommend a prosecution and don’t announce it.”
    Sammy Finkelman (f1bb90) — 12/10/2019 @ 9:16 pm

    Not possible. Everyone knew there was an investigation, the outcome of which was highly anticipated st the time.

    To announce nothing and not prosecute would’ve fed speculation, which would’ve helped no one.

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  144. “IGs are not prosecutors. It isn’t his job to guess at the motivations of FBI employees. Only that he didn’t find smoking gun/documented evidence that says “we’re politically motivated to take out Trump.””

    What, other than documentation or testimony, would constitute evidence of bias?

    “Unfortunately only prosecutors could do that (ie, indictments) and a court trial to convict.”

    Convict of what? Felony Bias?

    Davethulhu (fe4242)

  145. Whembly wrote

    IGs are not prosecutors. It isn’t his job to guess at the motivations of FBI employees. Only that he didn’t find smoking gun/documented evidence that says “we’re politically motivated to take out Trump.”

    Unfortunately only prosecutors could do that (ie, indictments) and a court trial to convict.

    So, yes, it *is* spin to to claim that the IG said there were no bias. It’s just that the IG (who doesn’t have subpoena power) didn’t find any documented bias.

    1. The IG can compel testimony from DOJ employees who can be fired/disciplined for a ‘lack of candor’ which, from my understanding penalizes withholding information.
    2. The IG can, and do, recommend prosecution if if the find reasonable suspicion that a law has been broken.

    They we very clear that they didn’t fine evidence of what you’re asserting. You’re free to continue asserting it, but I have to ask if there’s any level of investigation that will satisfy you?

    Trump made the claim that ‘Obama Spied on him and tapped his phones’ because the “deep state” was out to get him.

    We now know from the IG report that Obama and DOJ leaders weren’t involved in the decision making, that the investigation targeted Carter page, that the investigation was properly predicated, that there is no evidence of political bias in the decision to investigate and that the FISA process was not followed properly.

    We also know that the tip that started the investigation came after the hack of the DNC and there was reason to believe Russia was interfering in our election and that the FBI didn’t make their investigation into Carter Page public, or leak anything about it.

    It’s fine if you want to continue to believe things without evidence, but it puts you in the same intellectual camp as the Trump critics who say that Trump did conspire with Russia and Mueller just didn’t find the evidence.

    Time123 (d54166)

  146. ”I don’t know and I don’t feel like researching to come up with an opinion.”
    Time123 (d54166) — 12/10/2019 @ 6:22 pm

    Yeah, that would be a tough one.

    Strzok altered the language so as to justify dismissing the charges against Hillary.

    Kevin “Viva le Resistance” Clinesmith altered a document on a Carter Page FISA renewal.

    Hard to square both with your @127. Best not to try.

    Munroe (dd6b64) — 12/10/2019 @ 6:52 pm

    You didn’t ask “What happened” you asked “Why”

    Your comment here addresses “what.” Out of courtesy i answered your question. You’re now changing the question and implying that I’m being intellectually dishonest for not answering what you didn’t ask.

    Do you have any evidence that there’s a deep state conspiracy out to get Trump?

    Time123 (d54166)

  147. 148

    Whembly wrote

    IGs are not prosecutors. It isn’t his job to guess at the motivations of FBI employees. Only that he didn’t find smoking gun/documented evidence that says “we’re politically motivated to take out Trump.”

    Unfortunately only prosecutors could do that (ie, indictments) and a court trial to convict.

    So, yes, it *is* spin to to claim that the IG said there were no bias. It’s just that the IG (who doesn’t have subpoena power) didn’t find any documented bias.

    1. The IG can compel testimony from DOJ employees who can be fired/disciplined for a ‘lack of candor’ which, from my understanding penalizes withholding information.

    Key point here: IG cannot compel testimony from former employees. It can only be voluntary.

    Fusion GPS refused to participate.

    Hell. James Comey explicitly refused to re-up his security security so that the IG would be prevented to investigate certain aspect under classified setting (note here IG could NOT compel Comey).

    So, right there you know the IG’s investigations is at the very least, incomplete.

    Only a real prosecutor (ie, Durham) could compel Comey.

    2. The IG can, and do, recommend prosecution if if the find reasonable suspicion that a law has been broken.

    Of course. But both of your points here supports my assertions that IGs are not prosecutors with the full bevy of investigatory powers with subpoena and grand juries.

    They we very clear that they didn’t fine evidence of what you’re asserting.

    Either I’m not doing a good job making my point, or you are willfully being pedantic to deflect. I really hope its the former…

    Let me try again: IG could not find bias doesn’t mean there wasn’t any…especially in light of the fact that the IG couldn’t not subpoena the subjects of the investigation. More importantly, and both Barr and Durham took the extrodinary step to publicly announce that they disagreed with the IG’s conclusion of no bias. Both Barr and Durham has access to far more information than the IG would dream of.

    You’re free to continue asserting it, but I have to ask if there’s any level of investigation that will satisfy you?

    Simply an investigation from a proper prosecutor.

    Trump made the claim that ‘Obama Spied on him and tapped his phones’ because the “deep state” was out to get him.

    We now know from the IG report that Obama and DOJ leaders weren’t involved in the decision making, that the investigation targeted Carter page, that the investigation was properly predicated, that there is no evidence of political bias in the decision to investigate and that the FISA process was not followed properly.

    We also know that the tip that started the investigation came after the hack of the DNC and there was reason to believe Russia was interfering in our election and that the FBI didn’t make their investigation into Carter Page public, or leak anything about it.

    It’s fine if you want to continue to believe things without evidence, but it puts you in the same intellectual camp as the Trump critics who say that Trump did conspire with Russia and Mueller just didn’t find the evidence.

    Time123 (d54166) — 12/11/2019 @ 2:17 am

    whembly (fd57f6)

  148. ***crap press submit by accident and previous post is all jacked up…sorry!***
    148

    Whembly wrote

    IGs are not prosecutors. It isn’t his job to guess at the motivations of FBI employees. Only that he didn’t find smoking gun/documented evidence that says “we’re politically motivated to take out Trump.”

    Unfortunately only prosecutors could do that (ie, indictments) and a court trial to convict.

    So, yes, it *is* spin to to claim that the IG said there were no bias. It’s just that the IG (who doesn’t have subpoena power) didn’t find any documented bias.

    1. The IG can compel testimony from DOJ employees who can be fired/disciplined for a ‘lack of candor’ which, from my understanding penalizes withholding information.

    Key point here: IG cannot compel testimony from former employees. It can only be voluntary.

    Fusion GPS refused to participate.

    Hell. James Comey explicitly refused to re-up his security security so that the IG would be prevented to investigate certain aspect under classified setting (note here IG could NOT compel Comey).

    So, right there you know the IG’s investigations is at the very least, incomplete.

    Only a real prosecutor (ie, Durham) could compel Comey.

    2. The IG can, and do, recommend prosecution if if the find reasonable suspicion that a law has been broken.

    Of course. But both of your points here supports my assertions that IGs are not prosecutors with the full bevy of investigatory powers with subpoena and grand juries.

    They we very clear that they didn’t fine evidence of what you’re asserting.

    Either I’m not doing a good job making my point, or you are willfully being pedantic to deflect. I really hope its the former…

    Let me try again: IG could not find bias doesn’t mean there wasn’t any…especially in light of the fact that the IG couldn’t not subpoena the subjects of the investigation. More importantly, and both Barr and Durham took the extrodinary step to publicly announce that they disagreed with the IG’s conclusion of no bias. Both Barr and Durham has access to far more information than the IG would dream of.

    You’re free to continue asserting it, but I have to ask if there’s any level of investigation that will satisfy you?

    Simply an investigation from a proper prosecutor.

    Trump made the claim that ‘Obama Spied on him and tapped his phones’ because the “deep state” was out to get him.

    We now know from the IG report that Obama and DOJ leaders weren’t involved in the decision making, that the investigation targeted Carter page,

    That’s incorrect. The IG points out that Comey and McCabe knew about it. The IG mentioned that there were communication to the whitehouse.

    The IG clearly supports the claim that the Trump campaigned was spied on.

    that the investigation was properly predicated,

    Yes, the IG said that only because because the bar was very LOW. That’s not an endorsement that opening the investigation was kosher. The IG commented multiple “concerns” of that standard.

    that there is no evidence of political bias in the decision to investigate

    which I already commented earlier.

    and that the FISA process was not followed properly.

    My big beef with this part is that the government knew by Jan 2017 that the Steele dossier was unsubstantiated, and yet they allowed that to cloud the Trump administration to this day.

    Furthermore, the question no one seems to be asking that I think it’s vitally important: Is this normal? Or is this unique and we got bit hard by Murphy’s Law?

    We also know that the tip that started the investigation came after the hack of the DNC and there was reason to believe Russia was interfering in our election and that the FBI didn’t make their investigation into Carter Page public, or leak anything about it.

    It’s fine if you want to continue to believe things without evidence, but it puts you in the same intellectual camp as the Trump critics who say that Trump did conspire with Russia and Mueller just didn’t find the evidence.

    Time123 (d54166) — 12/11/2019 @ 2:17 am

    The fact that Carter Page was targetted, while at the same time a different agency was using him as an asset and that the FBI knew about that and yet chose to NOT disclose it to the courts? Please tell me what you think about that?

    I’m going to purposely ignore your last paragraph…otherwise, our host would have no choice but to delete my post.

    whembly (fd57f6)

  149. Whembly, thank you for the reply. I appreciate the time and I’m not trying to be obstinate. I’m gong to focus on what seems to be the heart of our disagreement.

    you wrote

    Let me try again: IG could not find bias doesn’t mean there wasn’t any…especially in light of the fact that the IG couldn’t not subpoena the subjects of the investigation. More importantly, and both Barr and Durham took the extrodinary step to publicly announce that they disagreed with the IG’s conclusion of no bias. Both Barr and Durham has access to far more information than the IG would dream of.

    We agree with the portion in bold. Lack of evidence doesn’t prove something didn’t happen.

    Here’s where we disagree. I feel that given the amount of work that’s gone into investigating it’s reasonable to assume that some evidence would have been found. A lot of time and energy by competent investigators has gone into finding the wrongdoing alleged by Trump and his supporters. So far they’ve come up with almost nothing malicious (This investigation found a significant wrongdoing by a lawyer who helped prepare the FISA warrant but that’s it.). Given the severity of the accusations I expect there to be some evidence to support them.

    Also, we know that some of the things that were alleged have been disproved by this investigation. For instance Trump claimed that the Steele dossier was the basis for the investigation into members of his campaign. This report disproves that. It was a tip from an Ally. Trump alleged that this investigation was unprecedented and baseless. The IG confirmed that starting this investigation was consistent with past investigations and properly predicated. Trump alleged that this was fabricated by Strzok and Page. The IG confirms that they were part of the team, but that there was consensus on how to proceed. Trump alleged that Obama was involved. The IG actually faults the FBI for not making leadership in the DOJ aware of what they were doing. The report shows that the FBI did not respect the rights of the subject in applying for a FISA warrant and that members of the team weren’t even aware of the what the rules were. If also found a (hopefully soon to be prosecuted) lawyer falsified information.

    you wrote

    Both Barr and Durham has access to far more information than the IG would dream of.

    What I think you mean by this is that the prosecutor has more and better tools to conduct their investigation. I don’t think this is completely correct. I think they have different tools. but IANAL and welcome feedback if I’m wrong.

    My understanding is that the IG can compel active employees to give a statements and that they can be punished for failing to be forthright. Spin, obfuscation, holding back information can all be punished as a lack of candor. Further the IG’s findings will include information not just about wrongdoing, but also about if people performed their duties in a way that differences for process and/or past practice as well as flaws in the institutional processes.

    A prosecutor can’t compel the subject of an investigation to give a statement if they’re in legal jeopardy and there’s no expectation that they will volunteer information even if they do. A prosecutor is supposed restrict their statements to an indictment. This means that if the investigation were legal, but didn’t follow existing processes for starting an investigation, the IG would identify that, but a prosecutor would not. This means that they can’t force Comey to make a statement if he’s the subject of an investigation.

    I’m fine with having both investigations, I think there’s enough to substantiate a criminal investigation. But given how much of what’s alleged has been shown false I think it’s more likely than not that we won’t find evidence of any deep state conspiracy from Durham.

    Time123 (daab2f)

  150. We cross posted.

    Time123 (daab2f)

  151. Finished reading your edit, and it doesn’t change my point. Few things to respond to.

    That’s incorrect. The IG points out that Comey and McCabe knew about it. The IG mentioned that there were communication to the whitehouse.

    The IG clearly supports the claim that the Trump campaigned was spied on.

    McCabe and Comey were both FBI not DOJ.

    I don’t want to parse words, but when you say ‘spied’ I assume you mean something consistent with “monitored for illicit purposes”. If you don’t can you help me understand what you do mean? If you do, why do you say that? The purpose of the surveillance was in furtherance of a lawful investigation.

    Going back to who knew what here’s what the IG said in the exec summary.

    We were concerned,
    however, that Department and FBI policies do not
    require t hat a senior Department official be notified
    prior to the opening of a particularly sensitive case such
    as t his one, nor do they place any additional
    requirements for SIMs beyond the approval and
    notification requirements at the time of opening, and
    therefore we include a recommendation to address this
    issue.

    This is from Page 76 of the report. Apparently the IG was able to interview Comey.

    Lynch told us that in her interactions with the White House in 2016, she did
    not recall substantive discussions about the Crossfire Hurricane investigations but
    did recall discussions about the broader topic of Russian interference in the 2016
    U.S. elections
    . Lynch said that the FBI, and not the Attorney General, would brief
    the White House on the investigation if the FBI was able to share information it
    received, but she did not recall that occurring. Yates also told us she did not attend
    any White House briefings where Crossfire Hurricane or the Carter Page FISA
    application was briefed or discussed, and she had no knowledge of whether any
    such meetings occurred.

    So, Lynch and Yates answered question to the IG about this and made statements that could be refuted with 3rd party evidence. I believe it’s a crime to lie to the IG.

    When we asked Corney about meetings with the White House concerning
    Crossfire Hurricane, he said that although he did not brief the White House about
    the investigation, he did mention to President Obama and others at a meeting in
    the Situation ·Room that the FBI was trying to determine whether any U.S. person
    had worked with the Russians in their efforts to interfere in the 2016 U.S.
    election. 194 Corney said he thought it was important that the President know the
    nature of the FBI’s efforts without providing any specifics. Corney said although he
    did not recall exactly what he said, he may have said there were four individuals
    with “some association or connection to the Trump campaign.” Corney stated that
    after he provided this information, no one at the meeting responded or followed up
    with any questions.
    Corney did not recall specifically when this meeting took place,
    but believed it may have been in August 2016. We were unable to determine
    whether this meeting was part of the same meeting reflected in McCabe’s notes
    discussed above.

    Time123 (b87ded)

  152. Yes, the IG said that only because because the bar was very LOW. That’s not an endorsement that opening the investigation was kosher. The IG commented multiple “concerns” of that standard.

    I didn’t see the IG address any concerns about the standard. Only that they wanted to make sure the reader knew it was a low one. Haven’t read it all so I may have missed it. Can you point me to it?

    Time123 (b87ded)

  153. My big beef with this part is that the government knew by Jan 2017 that the Steele dossier was unsubstantiated, and yet they allowed that to cloud the Trump administration to this day.

    Furthermore, the question no one seems to be asking that I think it’s vitally important: Is this normal? Or is this unique and we got bit hard by Murphy’s Law?

    I think this is how law enforcement will roll when they think you’re guilty. I don’t think they did something special against Carter Page.

    Time123 (b87ded)

  154. The fact that Carter Page was targetted, while at the same time a different agency was using him as an asset and that the FBI knew about that and yet chose to NOT disclose it to the courts? Please tell me what you think about that?

    I think it’s crap and that the system needs to be reformed.

    Time123 (b87ded)

  155. It’s fine if you want to continue to believe things without evidence, but it puts you in the same intellectual camp as the Trump critics who say that Trump did conspire with Russia and Mueller just didn’t find the evidence.

    Time123 (d54166) — 12/11/2019 @ 2:17 am

    I’m going to purposely ignore your last paragraph…otherwise, our host would have no choice but to delete my post.

    I’m sorry for the way I worded that. I was rude. The point I was trying to make is that the bar of proving something didn’t happen is incredibly high and people can always modify the theory like this to claim “It happened, they just hid the evidence.”

    Time123 (daab2f)

  156. You didn’t ask “What happened” you asked “Why”
    Time123 (d54166) — 12/11/2019 @ 2:24 am

    You posed this @127:

    “Are you open to the idea that this is how cops treat you when they think you’re guilty and not specific to Trump?” Meaning they cut corners and ignore holes in their case / exculpatory evidence.

    In one instance, for pol#1, they go out of their way to cut corners to push the case forward, as you describe.

    In another instance, for opponent of pol#1, they go out of their way cutting corners to dismiss.

    What or Why — don’t care. Can you jibe that with your @127? In what world does this not point to bias?

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  157. @Time123, thank you for that.

    I think you’re right about our disagreement.

    Maybe this will help where I’m coming from…

    I really don’t care about Trump. I know he’s imperfect and I know he exhibit qualities that shouldn’t go anywhere near the oval office. However, both the Kavanaugh hearing and the Covington Kid fiasco simply broke me. So, I’m transactionally(sp?) supporting Trump (and the GOP really) because I don’t believe the current crop of Democrats deserves to be anywhere near to levers of power. I’ve accepted that Trump will be the presidential candidate going forward as there’s no good way to put that genie back in the bottle.

    That’s why, I’m sure, it looks like I’m a MAGA-frothing cultist to you. That’s fine.

    But, honestly, what I really care about is this: what norms are being destroyed in the zeal to stop Trump?

    I’m seeing the following:
    -Court is being weaponized with the use of nationwide injunctions
    -The rage mob (riots after elections, dog-piling on Convington kids)
    -despicable bad-faith accusations during SCOTUS hearings
    -weaponized Advise & Consent to stringing out appointed positions
    -advocating to criminalize gutter politics
    -now the bad faith impeachment inquiry
    -I’m sure there are others, but all of this coming inbound “stream of consciousness” style.

    Trump will not be POTUS forever… but, the precedents will remain. Just imagine the above being used on Democrat administrations when those rules are applied to them.

    And it *will* be applied to them. Bad-faith crap begets bad-faith. That’s fundamental in all politics.

    Just look at the Reid Rule.

    Its amazing that anything gets done in government… doesn’t it?

    whembly (fd57f6)

  158. 155

    Yes, the IG said that only because because the bar was very LOW. That’s not an endorsement that opening the investigation was kosher. The IG commented multiple “concerns” of that standard.

    I didn’t see the IG address any concerns about the standard. Only that they wanted to make sure the reader knew it was a low one. Haven’t read it all so I may have missed it. Can you point me to it?

    Time123 (b87ded) — 12/11/2019 @ 8:12 am

    I remember reading it. I’ll see if I can find it. I’m watching the Horowitz hearing, and he restated his concerns about the low standard about opening such investigation with no governing policies to notify leadership that an investigation was opened on a political compaign.

    whembly (fd57f6)

  159. 156

    My big beef with this part is that the government knew by Jan 2017 that the Steele dossier was unsubstantiated, and yet they allowed that to cloud the Trump administration to this day.

    Furthermore, the question no one seems to be asking that I think it’s vitally important: Is this normal? Or is this unique and we got bit hard by Murphy’s Law?

    I think this is how law enforcement will roll when they think you’re guilty. I don’t think they did something special against Carter Page.

    Time123 (b87ded) — 12/11/2019 @ 8:13 am

    In Jan 2017 they literally knew that the dossier was unsubstantiated, so none of the FISA warrants should’ve ever by issued. They literally knew Page wasn’t guilty, the report lists out numerous exculpatory information.

    whembly (fd57f6)

  160. @159,
    Okay I’ll bite.

    wrt to the investigation of Carter Page I think the people who worked at the FBI honestly thought people in the Trump campaign were working with Russia around the stolen DNC emails. I think this was a very reasonable suspicion at the time. If they wanted to use the carter page investigation to harm Trump I would expect them to have leaked it to the press or used the information gathered to harm Trump is some way. So far as I know they did neither.

    wrt to the Clinton email server I think the people doing the investigation didn’t feel they had a case they could prove in court but wanted to insulate the FBI from claims of bias so they made an announcement about what a corrupt secretive dumb ass she is. Remember the alleged crime wasn’t using a private server to evade transparency, it was mishandling classified information. If they wanted to help Clinton i don’t think Comey would have made the statement he did. Also, if they were dishonest that they didn’t have a case I would expect Session, Whitaker, or Barr to have brought charges. I take the lack of charges as an admission that the initial decision not to charge was correct.

    I’m open to the idea that there was a conspiracy to help Clinton and harm Trump. But i need some evidence beyond a plausible theory of how the facts fit together.

    I might agree with you if the IG had said that the investigation of carter page
    -was opened based without a proper basis.
    -was run by a single person, or small group that had a clear bias.
    -had ignored internal objections that it was not proceeding properly
    -had passed information gained in the investigation to the Clinton Campaign
    -had been used in ways that harmed the Trump campaign
    -had testimony or documentary evidence that decisions were made for biased reasons

    So far as I know the IG report has none of these things, and makes clear that some of them didn’t happen.

    Time123 (b87ded)

  161. That’s why, I’m sure, it looks like I’m a MAGA-frothing cultist to you.

    You seem like a reasonable person that disagrees with me but is honest about why. I suspect I’d like you if we ever met.

    Time123 (b87ded)

  162. Trump will not be POTUS forever… but, the precedents will remain. Just imagine the above being used on Democrat administrations when those rules are applied to them.

    Trump will not be POTUS forever… but, the precedents will remain. Just imagine the norms he violated being used by Democrat administrations and how they will use that to push their agenda.

    Trump is dramatically increasing the power of the president and not accomplishing many conservative goals while he does it. Mostly culture war stuff that isn’t that important to me. I’m really worried about what someone competent might do under the new norms.

    Also, fwiw, i think the impeachment is fully justified based on the evidence provided to date.

    Time123 (b87ded)

  163. We can deal with our domestic squabbles. It’s all in the family. It’s our foreign enemies, rivals, and competitors that the orange is selling us out to, in a shrinking and increasingly more dangerous world, that we need to really worry about.

    nk (dbc370)

  164. @165

    Trump will not be POTUS forever… but, the precedents will remain. Just imagine the above being used on Democrat administrations when those rules are applied to them.

    Trump will not be POTUS forever… but, the precedents will remain. Just imagine the norms he violated being used by Democrat administrations and how they will use that to push their agenda.

    Trump is dramatically increasing the power of the president and not accomplishing many conservative goals while he does it. Mostly culture war stuff that isn’t that important to me. I’m really worried about what someone competent might do under the new norms.

    Touché.

    However, I don’t view Trump’s transgressions any worst than prior presidencies… and he’s even CHECKED by the courts quite a bit. I’m not really seeing any major “precedent” setting actions that are problematic.

    One that is up in the air, for me, is his withdrawl from the Paris Accord and the Iran Deal. Yes, that does make future efforts harder when the following administration can rescind it. My hope is that it signals to everyone that such agreement ought to go through Senate ratification process for legitimacy. But, what it does as far as norms, I’m not sure we’ve fully scoped it out.

    Also, fwiw, i think the impeachment is fully justified based on the evidence provided to date.

    Time123 (b87ded) — 12/11/2019 @ 8:54 am

    Well… I disagree.

    Back to the IG, care to look at this? The author hits on the stuff I’ve been banging about:
    https://thefederalist.com/2019/12/11/the-ig-report-didnt-come-close-to-debunking-the-idea-the-fbi-was-politically-biased/

    whembly (fd57f6)

  165. “Former FBI Director James Comey said this week that your report vindicates him. Is that a fair assessment?” Sen. Lindsey Graham asks.

    “I think the activities we found here don’t vindicate anybody who touched this,” IG Horowitz replies. https://t.co/c868WmzANb pic.twitter.com/PMjysJBnGm

    — ABC News (@ABC) December 11, 2019

    That’s a solid hit.

    whembly (fd57f6)

  166. @Time123
    Please also read this:
    https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/political-commentary/horowitz-report-steele-dossier-collusion-news-media-924944/
    Author is definitely not a Trump supporter…

    whembly (fd57f6)

  167. Back to the IG, care to look at this? The author hits on the stuff I’ve been banging about:

    If political bias is enough of a reason to shut down an investigation, then why is Durham, or anyone selected by Barr, being allowed to investigate?

    kishnevi (496414)

  168. Back to the IG, care to look at this? The author hits on the stuff I’ve been banging about:

    If political bias is enough of a reason to shut down an investigation, then why is Durham, or anyone selected by Barr, being allowed to investigate?

    kishnevi (496414) — 12/11/2019 @ 9:44 am

    …and the bias is what?

    whembly (fd57f6)

  169. Barr is not investigating people who he thinks committed crimes.
    Barr is investigating people who he thinks are enemies of Trump.

    kishnevi (496414)

  170. @169

    Thank you for that link. He makes a lot of excellent points.

    One of the things I saw there in the comments is that “bias” has two meanings. It could mean (a) political bias to get Trump and/or Republicans and (b) policing bias to “get the perp” regardless of the facts.

    It appears that the latter form of bias is what happened.

    Bored Lawyer (998177)

  171. @172

    Barr is not investigating people who he thinks committed crimes.
    Barr is investigating people who he thinks are enemies of Trump.

    kishnevi (496414) — 12/11/2019 @ 9:59 am

    That’s what you think…but you’ve yet to provide anything to substantiate that.

    whembly (fd57f6)

  172. No I didn’t miss that.

    I want the DOJ to investigate how the Russian-collusion counter-intel was conducted.

    The IG’s report by Horowitz was just over the FISA applications, which is a small part of the whole ordeal.

    whembly (fd57f6)

  173. W, thank you for the links.
    I think I look at it like this:
    There’s reasonable cause to suspect political bias against Trump on the part of the DOJ.
    That justifies investigation.
    Some of those investigations have been completed and have not produced evidence to support the theory. Some of what’s been revealed has refuted specific parts of the alleged wrongdoing. This weakens the overall theory of the case.

    Time123 (b87ded)

  174. Whembly, Barr is asserting there was “bad faith” without any evidence there was bad faith.

    Kishnevi (ac9a89)

  175. 178

    Whembly, Barr is asserting there was “bad faith” without any evidence there was bad faith.

    Kishnevi (ac9a89) — 12/11/2019 @ 1:28 pm

    How do you know he doesn’t have the evidence?

    whembly (c30c83)

  176. How do you know he doesn’t have the evidence?

    If there was, it would have been found by the IG.

    But notice, “bad faith” presumes that there was no real basis for the investigation. Whereas in reality there was ample justification for it.

    Kishnevi (ac9a89)

  177. How do you know he doesn’t have the evidence?

    If there was, it would have been found by the IG.

    No, the IG necessarily wouldn’t have found it. The IG isn’t a prosecutor.

    But notice, “bad faith” presumes that there was no real basis for the investigation. Whereas in reality there was ample justification for it.

    Kishnevi (ac9a89) — 12/11/2019 @ 2:55 pm

    There’s a distinction I’m trying to make.

    Yes, there’s an extremely low bar that allows the FBI to open up a counter-intel investigation. That doesn’t mean that there was “ample justification”.

    That’s where Barr/Durham will get to make that determination.

    whembly (c30c83)

  178. It better be the determination Trump wants them to make because with “[any other] kind of attitude, [they] will never be able to fix the [DOJ], which is badly broken despite having some of the greatest men & women working there!”

    nk (dbc370)

  179. Whembly, what was publicly known about Trump’s business ties with Russia was more than enough justification. If the FBI thought it had to go through hoops and contortions to justify an investigation, then the FBI is truly incompetent and full of fools.

    Barr of course is doing his best make everyone forget that pertinent fact.

    Kishnevi (dc4324)

  180. Ted Cruz: “A lawyer at the FBI creates fraudulent evidence, alters an email, that is in turn used as the basis for a sworn statement to the court that the court relies on. Am I stating that accurately?”

    IG Horowitz: “That is correct, that is what occurred.”

    NJRob (97461f)

  181. 183

    Whembly, what was publicly known about Trump’s business ties with Russia was more than enough justification. If the FBI thought it had to go through hoops and contortions to justify an investigation, then the FBI is truly incompetent and full of fools.

    Barr of course is doing his best make everyone forget that pertinent fact.

    Kishnevi (dc4324) — 12/11/2019 @ 6:13 pm

    But we’re not talking about Trump’s business ties…we’re talking about Carter Page’s FISA warrants that allow the intelligence apparatus to spy on Page, and any contacts Page made with the campaign.

    This IG report confirmed that the FBI opened a counter-intel, based on the ridiculously low standards (technically, correct), but ignored exculpatory information that would’ve shut down the investigation soon after (FISA court wouldn’t have granted warrant had they known).

    whembly (c30c83)

  182. Ted Cruz: “A lawyer at the FBI creates fraudulent evidence, alters an email, that is in turn used as the basis for a sworn statement to the court that the court relies on. Am I stating that accurately?”

    IG Horowitz: “That is correct, that is what occurred.”

    NJRob (97461f) — 12/11/2019 @ 6:13 pm

    This right here, is what Durham is working with that turned the investigation into a criminal investigation.

    whembly (c30c83)

  183. Ted Cruz: “A lawyer at the FBI creates fraudulent evidence, alters an email, that is in turn used as the basis for a sworn statement to the court that the court relies on. Am I stating that accurately?”

    IG Horowitz: “That is correct, that is what occurred.”

    And the email in question is something like 0.01% of the material “used as a basis for a sworn statement to the court”.

    Dave (1bb933)

  184. But we’re not talking about Trump’s business ties…we’re talking about Carter Page’s FISA warrants that allow the intelligence apparatus to spy on Page, and any contacts Page made with the campaign.

    That’s the point. If the FBI didn’t realize Trump’s ties to Russia by themselves justified investigating him, then the FBI is a bunch of fools.

    Kishnevi (dc4324)

  185. ’And the email in question is something like 0.01% of the material “used as a basis for a sworn statement to the court”.‘
    Dave (1bb933) — 12/11/2019 @ 6:24 pm

    You pulled that out of your behind.

    But, whether 0.01%, or 100%, the motive and intent is the same. It makes zero difference.

    And, if the former, we’re hiring some truly dumb agents to lead investigations.

    Munroe (4ae3dd)

  186. This is specifically what was involved with the altered email (from the executive summary):

    Omitted information the FBI had obtained from another U.S. government agency detailing its prior relationship with Page, including that Page had been approved as an “operational contact” for the other agency from 2008 to 2013, and that Page had provided information to the other agency concerning his prior contacts with certain Russian intelligence officers, one of which overlapped with facts asserted in the FISA application;

    Page was obviously not, in fact, working for some other government agency while he was talking to Russians in 2016, so while the information shouldn’t have been omitted, it is immaterial to the justification for the FISA warrant.

    Dave (1bb933)

  187. 190 This is specifically what was involved with the altered email (from the executive summary):

    Omitted information the FBI had obtained from another U.S. government agency detailing its prior relationship with Page, including that Page had been approved as an “operational contact” for the other agency from 2008 to 2013, and that Page had provided information to the other agency concerning his prior contacts with certain Russian intelligence officers, one of which overlapped with facts asserted in the FISA application;

    Page was obviously not, in fact, working for some other government agency while he was talking to Russians in 2016, so while the information shouldn’t have been omitted, it is immaterial to the justification for the FISA warrant.

    Dave (1bb933) — 12/11/2019 @ 6:45 pm

    As part of the FISA application, the FBI had to show the court that they had probable cause that Carter page was not only an ‘Agent of Foreign Power’… they must ALSO show probably cause that Page will break US laws as well.

    Had the FISA court knew that Page was previously a CIA asset, who literally helped the FBI to prosecute another Russian individual, they wouldn’t have granted the warrant.

    FBI miserably failed here.

    whembly (c30c83)

  188. Had the FISA court knew that Page was previously a CIA asset, who literally helped the FBI to prosecute another Russian individual, they wouldn’t have granted the warrant.

    The CIA does not investigate or prosecute foreign spies in the US. If he had been involved in prosecution of the Russian spy, he would have been working for the FBI (he wasn’t).

    But regardless, are you seriously suggesting that anyone who has worked with the CIA in the past is off-limits for a counter-intel investigation?

    LOL.

    Dave (1bb933)

  189. A note on Carter Page. JustSecurity has a good searchable timeline, and I checked out the one involving the guy. Herewith:
    April 8, 2013

    Russians whom the FBI later accuses of spying on the United States discuss efforts to recruit American businessman Carter Page. Court documents show that one of the Russian intelligence operatives attempting to recruit Page thinks he is “an idiot” who wants to “rise up” and “earn lots of money.”

    I suspect that the FBI also thought Mr. Page an idiot.
    Late January 2016

    After contacting New York State’s Republican Party chair, Ed Cox, in late December and meeting Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski at Trump Tower in early January, Carter Page becomes an unpaid volunteer for an informal foreign policy committee that candidate Trump is forming.

    In March, Trump identified five people on his foreign policy team, one of whom was Page. In the months between his joining the Trump campaign and his trip to Russia, Mr. Page lobbied multiple folks in the campaign for a Trump trip to Russia.
    July 7, 2016

    In a lecture at the New Economic School in Moscow, Carter Page criticizes American foreign policy. He says that many of the mistakes spoiling relations between the US and Russia “originated in my own country.” The university pays Page’s expenses for the trip.
    While in Moscow, Page meets Russian government officials, including Russian Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich. He also meets with Andrey Baranov, whom Page first met in the mid 2000s while Baranov was at Gazprom and with whom Page says he is “old friends.” Baranov is now head of investor relations at Rosneft — a Russian majority state-owned oil giant subject to US sanctions.

    During the July 2016 GOP convention

    Carter Page and J.D. Gordon, national security advisers to the Trump campaign, meet with ambassador Sergey Kislyak. They stress that Trump would like to improve relations with Russia. Page later testifies that the subject of sanctions may have come up “in passing.”

    The one change to the GOP platform during the convention was about Ukraine. Convenient.
    August 5, 2016

    Carter Page’s ongoing public criticism of US sanctions against Russia over its actions in Ukraine and his praise for Vladimir Putin generate increasing attention and concern. In response, Trump campaign spokesperson Hope Hicks describes Page as an “informal policy adviser” who “does not speak for Mr. Trump or the campaign.”

    Ten days later, the story broke about Manafort and the “black ledger”, showing the millions of cash payments he received from a pro-Putin political party in Ukraine.
    Maybe it’s just me, but without even getting into the Steele dossier and acknowledging that Page is an idiot, there was enough suspicion for the FBI to investigate the guy, maybe even get a warrant on him.

    Paul Montagu (00daa1)

  190. Here’s an interesting passage from the IG report (page 128), indicating that the FBI treated Page and Papadopoulos differently because they had probable cause for one, but not for the other. It blows up the myth that the FBI was engaged in some kind of J. Edgar Hoover-style dirty tricks campaign:

    At the same time the Crossfire Hurricane team moved forward with a FISA request targeting Carter Page, FBI documents reflect that the team was also interested in a FISA request targeting George Papadopoulos to further the investigation. However, FBI OGC was not supportive. Instant messages between the OGC Attorney and the OGC Unit Chief indicate that they, the Intel Section Chief and Strzok, agreed that there was not a sufficient basis for FISA surveillance targeting Papadopoulos. The instant messages also show that the Intel Section Chief and Strzok were much more interested in pursuing the request for FISA coverage targeting Page.

    The OGC Unit Chief told the OIG that she recalled that the difference between these two subjects with respect to a potential FISA application was that Carter Page had previous connections with Russian intelligence officers as well as the recent allegations in the Steele reporting that Page was an intermediary between Russia and the Trump campaign. With respect to Papadopoulos, the Crossfire Hurricane team had the information from the FFG that mentioned him, but no specific information that Papadopoulos was a person being directed by the Russians. Ultimately, the Crossfire Hurricane team did not seek FISA authority targeting Papadopoulos.

    In short, they were doing their jobs responsibly.

    Dave (1bb933)

  191. You guys arguing with Rodentia Rectalis Trumpensis are silly. You don’t share the same frame of reference as them. You do not love Donald J. Trump with all hearts, and all your minds, and all your souls. You might as well be arguing with the ordinary Rodentia Gerbillinae. It does not matter what the FBI or the FISA court did, what procedures they followed, or what basis they had for it. They acted against the interests of Donald J. Trump! There can be no justification for that! It had to be because they were human scum, cucks, Vichy, Deep State, Democrats, traitors, the enemies of the American people, who wanted Hillary to be President!

    nk (dbc370)

  192. The FBI is corrupt. Has been for more than a decade. Gotten much worse under Comey’s leadership. Comey and his cabal, were interfering in the 2016 elections.

    This is not the first time the FBI has been slapped back because of abuse using FISA tools

    The NSA compliance officer alerted Admiral Mike Rogers who then initiated a full compliance audit on/around March 9th, 2016, for the period of November 1st, 2015, through May 1st, 2016.

    While the audit was ongoing, due to the severity of the results that were identified, Admiral Mike Rogers stopped anyone from using the 702(17) “about query” option, and went to the extraordinary step of blocking all FBI contractor access to the database on April 18, 2016 (keep these dates in mind).

    Two separate FISA judges, covering two separate time frames have reviewed 702 searches. Each of these Judges found more that 85% of those 702 searches lacked proper predicate. These searches were undertaken by private contractors (think Fusion GPS) under direct supervision, of the FBI. Comey, and Wray have done nothing to clean up this abuse of 4th Amendment protections.

    https://theconservativetreehouse.com/2019/04/23/the-obama-use-of-fisa-702-as-a-domestic-political-surveillance-program/comment-page-4/

    iowan2 (9c8856)

  193. 194. You failed to notice the initial Carter Page FISA requested was refused by the FBI OGC. Hence the motivation to lie in the application. Even criminals know enough not to revisit the site of the same crime.

    iowan2 (9c8856)

  194. The FBI is corrupt. Has been for more than a decade.

    Except a two-year investigation by an Inspector General didn’t prove that. It is provable that the Attorney General is corrupt, and so is his boss.

    Paul Montagu (00daa1)

  195. 198. The IG report does not make such a declaration. Horowitz was force repeatedly to explain to Democrats and the committee, he would not make the declarations they were wanting.

    17 lies to the secret FISA Judge. Dozens of people knowingly pushing those lies. Not a single soul thought enough of the behavior to alert the IG. This is not a few bad actors, this is a culture of corruption cultivated in the FBI over decades.

    AG Barr. Not a single instance of questionable actions. Not a one. You don’t like him doing his job. Looking into the predicate of Crossfire Hurricane. The IG said acceptable predicate existed. He did not verify the underlying premise. The IG lacks tools to investigate other agencies, or foreign governments. Both, we know were involved in this corrupt investigation.

    iowan2 (9c8856)

  196. Whembly, one thing I do want to follow up on is your assertion that the cause to investigate Page was extremely thin.

    I disagree.

    1. A crime had been committed. (Hacking of the DNC server)
    2. There was a theory of the crime (Russia did it)
    3. There was a tip from a source that Carter Page said he had information. (Carter was bragging to an Australian diplomat while drinking at a bar)
    4. Carter Page’s history with Russia made it plausible that he might be contacted by people involved.
    5. Carter Page’s work at that time provided a motive for him to be receptive.
    From there the FBI badly misused the FISA process. You and I agree on that. But are you really saying that 1-5 don’t provide a reasonable justification to investigate?

    To use a less charged example; If an oil exploration company is hacked and the data is being leaked in a targeted way by some environmental group though Wikileaks would you really say the police shouldn’t investigate an Environmental studies professor with loose ties to that organization if they told a friend in the bar they were involved?

    To take out all the color: When a crime is committed and there is a suspect, should the police investigate a person of interest with ties to that suspect when a 3rd party tells them the person of interest claimed some level of involvement with the crime?

    Time123 (441f53)

  197. @198, You wrote:

    Except a two-year investigation by an Inspector General didn’t prove that. It is provable that the Attorney General is corrupt, and so is his boss.

    This is not correct.

    Iowan,
    What do you mean by this? What premise are you talking about?

    The IG said acceptable predicate existed. He did not verify the underlying premise.

    Time123 (441f53)

  198. Time123 tell me exactly what the predicate was. I’m not getting into a back and forth talking paste each other. State the predicate.

    iowan2 (9c8856)

  199. iowan2, I believe the exact predicate was #3, but don’t have time to look up the exact wording from the report. I’m not planning to argue with you, i just hadn’t seen the a contrast between predicate and premise.

    1. A crime had been committed. (Hacking of the DNC server)
    2. There was a theory of the crime (Russia did it)
    3. There was a tip from a source that Carter Page said he had information. (Carter was bragging to an Australian diplomat while drinking at a bar)
    4. Carter Page’s history with Russia made it plausible that he might be contacted by people involved.
    5. Carter Page’s work at that time provided a motive for him to be receptive.

    Time123 (441f53)

  200. 105. The book was reviewed by the wall Street Journal on Tuesday, November 12, 2019.

    Sammy Finkelman (1e81da)

  201. 203. It was a leap to assume that the possibly Russian related source was telling Carter Page the truth, and that the dirt on Hillary were the same DNC emails that had been hacked (everybody would assume that the Russian source was referring to the deleted clintonmail.com emails, which in fact, Russia never had, but people were believing might had been hacked.)

    I thought it was Papadoupolous that was the predicate for the investigation.

    Sammy Finkelman (1e81da)

  202. 203. Who told Page?

    We have to believe Page possesed this knowledge by osmosis. Nope, who told him? Better yet, why didn’t Horowitz interview the single person that launched the FBI surveillance of a Presidential campaign? The two year long Mueller investigation? Never interviewed the claimed source of the investigation. Horowitz, and Mueller avoided like the plague, the FBI source of their investigation to learn who provided Page with his information. Pages source would be more valuable to the investigation.
    Horowitz did not investigate the predicates veracity. He trusted the FBI was honest with the information provided. The same FBI that lied 17 times on FISA warrant applications.

    iowan2 (e9c145)

  203. Horowitz could on;y interview people employed by the Department of Justice, I think.

    Sammy Finkelman (1e81da)

  204. Iowan2, I should have written Papadapalous, not Page. That was my mistake.

    GP testified that it was Mifsurd.
    the IG reports that he found no evidence that Mifsurd was working with the FBI.
    The FBI interviewed Mifsud and he denied providing that information to GP.

    Quotes are below it’s all in the report data linked. Your assertions are factually incorrect.

    During October 25, 2018 testimony before the House Judiciary and House Committee on
    Government Reform and Oversight, Papadopoulos stated that the source of the information he shared
    with the FFG official was a professor from London, Joseph Mifsud. Papadopoulos testified that Mifsud
    provided him with information about the Russians possessing “dirt” on Hillary Clinton. Papadopoulos
    raised the possibility during his Congressional testimony that Mifsud might have been “working with
    the FBI and this was some sort of operation” to entrap Papadopoulos. As discussed in Chapter Ten of
    this report, the OIG searched the FBI’s database of Confidential Human Sources (CHS), and did not
    find any records indicating that Mifsud was an FBI CHS, or that Mifsud’s discussions with Papadopoulos
    were art of an FBI o eration. In Cha ter Ten we also note that the FBI re uested information REDACTED

    As described later in Chapter Eight, in February 2017, the FBI interviewed Joseph Mifsud
    who the FBI believed communicated to Papadopoulos the alleged offer from the Russians. According
    to FBI documents, Mifsud denied having advance knowledge that Russia was in possession of DNC
    emails and denied passing any offers or proffers to Papadopoulos

    Time123 (d1bf33)

  205. Who told Page?
    We have to believe Page possesed this knowledge by osmosis.

    Well, they would have to believe that unless they investigated to determine where the knowledge came from. Which is exactly what they did.

    But if you read Chapter 3 of the report, you would know that the friendly government report came 4 days after WikiLeaks released hacked emails, and was based on a conversation in May where Papadopoulos (not Page) told the FFG person that “the Trump campaign ‘received some kind of a suggestion from Russia’ that it could assist the campaign by anonymously releasing derogatory information about presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.”

    Carter Page was in Moscow a couple weeks before the WikiLeaks dump, on a Russian-sponsored trip. He was also the subject of another, on-going counterintelligence investigation, run out of the SDNY US Attorney’s office, in the course of which he admitted frequent contacts with known Russian intelligence operatives, which began in April 2016 (Horowitz, page 61 et seq.). Remember that opening both investigations required only “an articulable factual basis” for suspicion, not probable cause.

    Horowitz could only interview people employed by the Department of Justice, I think.

    They interviewed Steele, didn’t they?

    I think the correct reason is that Horowitz’s job was not to investigate whether information the FBI received was accurate. It was to determine whether the FBI and Justice Dept. followed proper procedures with the information they did receive.

    In any case, there was no “surveillance of a Presidential campaign”. Suggesting otherwise is untruthful.

    Dave (1bb933)

  206. So now that it’s been proven that the DNC dossier was a sham and known as such since January 2017 by the FBI, intelligence officials and the government, what should we do to those who kept pushing a lie they knew was false?

    NJRob (4d595c)

  207. ‘In any case, there was no “surveillance of a Presidential campaign”. Suggesting otherwise is untruthful.’
    Dave (1bb933) — 12/12/2019 @ 6:06 pm

    I think Halper and Azra Turk really did want to pick Papadopoulos’s brain about foreign policy stuff. LOL

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  208. You mean the guy that was the subject of a properly predicated investigation?

    Time123 (d54166)

  209. ”You mean the guy that was the subject of a properly predicated investigation?”
    Time123 (d54166) — 12/12/2019 @ 7:03 pm

    Whether properly predicated or not (and I think not), it was surveillance. Suggesting otherwise would be untruthful.

    Munroe (dd6b64)

  210. 208 Mifsud denied having advance knowledge that Russia was in possession of DNC
    emails and denied passing any offers or proffers to Papadopoulo

    So what? Nobody knew Russia was in possesion of the DNC emails. No proof has emerged that Russia was involved. Assange says he did not recieve them from Russia.
    The larger point is, Mifsud didn’t have to know anything. Just plant the idea with Papadop, and have him repeat it. And so he did. Why would anybody believe what the FBI told the IG. The are perfectly fine lying to FISC judges, lying about the investigation would be nothing but standard protocol

    All of this bears out Horowitz did not, or could not dig any deeper to the predicate of the investigation, he knows nothing about it, and with the lies of the FBI, less than nothing.

    And the part about Horowitz not finding any documents to support Mifsud was working with the FBI? Of course not. The foriegn agents were being handled by England, Italy, and maybe a third EU agency, as a favor to Brennen, and Clapper. No finger prints. Is everyone aware that the head of MI6 resigned the day after Trump was elected? And, the entire Management of Italy’s spook agency resigned when Mueller got started? Just a happy coincidence.

    That is what I pointed out in my original post.

    iowan2 (e9c145)

  211. Horowitz discovered the FBI had recordings of Papadop talking to those Non-spies. The recording provide exculpatory evidence of Papadops innocence. The FBI never brought that information forward, like the law would require. But the FBI is not bound by law.

    iowan2 (e9c145)

  212. Whether properly predicated or not (and I think not), it was surveillance. Suggesting otherwise would be untruthful.

    Surveillance of an individual suspected of wrongdoing, not a Presidential campaign.

    Dave (1bb933)

  213. You are woefully ignorant, or intentionally misrepresenting the fact.

    The spying was not just Page. Two hops from Page.

    Everyone that Page communicated with, phone, text, e mail, instant messaging, etc. Was also sucked into the net, along with all the people those from the first hop communicated with. To say the “campaign” was not spied on, ignores all those attached to campaign that were spied on.

    iowan2 (ca76f8)


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