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-Lurid Crime Tales-
John Brennan deflects questions about Carter Page FISA process to FBI
2019-12-13
[Washington Examiner] Questions about government missteps in the electronic surveillance of a onetime Trump campaign adviser had former CIA Director John Brennan pointing at the FBI.

Meet the Press host Chuck Todd pressed Brennan to open up about the Justice Department inspector general's report on the Trump-Russia investigation, which outlined several "significant" errors and omissions in the FBI's effort to obtain Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrants to monitor Carter Page.

"I would defer to the bureau on the FISA matter, because they’re the ones that actually initiate and then follow through on it," Brennan said Tuesday on MSNBC regarding whether he would make a determination if there should have been an approved FISA warrant application.
Notice how skillfully Brennan skirts the approval process.
Brennan oversaw the CIA when the FBI began its counterintelligence investigation into members of the Trump campaign suspected of working on behalf of Russia in the summer of 2016. That inquiry, code-named Crossfire Hurricane, was later wrapped into special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation, which was unable to establish criminal conspiracy between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin.

Todd noted that Brennan, now an MSNBC contributor, was limited in what he could say due to guidelines on classified information, but that did not stop Todd from trying to pry information from Brennan about how the CIA shared relevant information with the bureau.
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-Lurid Crime Tales-
Sen. Hawley Drops a Bomb on Horowitz: 'The Collusion Here Was Between the DNC and the FBI'
2019-12-13
[PJ] On Wednesday during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, Senator Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) dropped a bomb about FBI interference in the 2016 election while questioning Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz about his report regarding misconduct in the espionage operation against the Trump campaign in 2016.

"Is it worse to have a foreign government trying to meddle in our elections, or is it worse to have our own government meddling in the election?" asked Hawley. Referring to the report, Hawley continued: "It shows that our government, the most powerful law enforcement agency in the nation, the FBI, effectively meddled in an ongoing presidential campaign."

Hawley then called out the Democratic National Committee for instigating the whole mess.

"The DNC pays for the Steele dossier, solicits the Steele dossier, and then gets the Federal Bureau of Investigation to go get FISA warrants, surveil an American citizen, and surveil a presidential campaign all on the basis of this manufactured garbage that they paid for. I mean that’s extraordinary," he complained. "That has got to be a first time in history. In fact, let me just ask you, Mr. Horowitz, are you aware ever of another presidential campaign being targeted by the FBI like the Trump campaign was?"
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-Lurid Crime Tales-
Per Horowitz - No FISA warrant for surveillance of US Persons Manafort, Papadopoulos, or Flynn ?
2019-12-12
[The Last Refuge] Amid the investigative and research questions over the past several years, there was always a question about who, within the Trump orbit, may have been subject to FISA court authorized surveillance during their activity in 2016.

Because they were initially the four targets of the FBI investigation, there was speculation Paul Manafort, George Papadopoulos and/or Lt. General Michael Flynn were also subjects of Title-1 FISA Court authorized surveillance, in addition to Carter Page.

Today during his testimony, Inspector General Michael Horowitz specifically noted there was no other FISA application against any other campaign official. [See 05:23 of testimony to questions by Senator Chris Coons ‐ prompted just hit play]:

Flynn's attorney Sidney Powell video.
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Home Front: Politix
Message Received – Thank You Bill Barr…
2019-12-12
[ConservativeTreehouse] I’m not going to write a long history of the background again {Go Deep}. However, to be fair, if we are going to hold Barr accountable it is appropriate to be thankful when at least one aspect of a gross injustice has been addressed.

When the decision to allow James Wolfe to escape accountability for his leaking of the classified documents was made, there were only a few people within the DOJ who could make that decision.

AG Jeff Sessions was recused from anything to do with the ongoing DOJ activity into the 2016 election issues and the Russian-collusion/conspiracy investigation.

Therefore Robert Mueller, DAG Rod Rosenstein, DOJ liason Ed O’Callaghan and U.S. Attorney for DC Jessie Liu would have been the group of decision-makers. With Mueller and Rosenstein gone that left O’Callaghan and Liu still on staff at Main Justice. Today the last two were removed from positions of authority in the DOJ.
--------------
Wikipedia: On December 10, 2019, President Trump announced his intent to nominate Liu as Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Crimes at the Department of the Treasury

No word on where to Ed O'Callaghan is shuffled.
Related:
James Wolfe: 2018-12-12 Clapper asks for leniency for Senate Intel Committee source
James Wolfe: 2018-07-24 Indicted Senate Staffer James Wolfe Leaked a 2017 Copy of Full FISA Warrant Against Carter Page to Reporter Ali Watkins…
James Wolfe: 2018-07-04 Hogwash – Brian Ross Didn't Resign Over the Fake News Flynn Story
Related:
Robert Mueller: 2019-12-09 ‘Treason': House Judiciary Committee Report Implicates Trump in Ultimate Crime
Robert Mueller: 2019-12-06 VDH 'When Our Guardians Fail Us'
Robert Mueller: 2019-12-06 Convicted Pedophile Used In Mueller Investigation Indicted For Funneling Millions In Illegal Contributions to Hillary
Related:
Rod Rosenstein: 2019-10-26 Democrats Say ‘Whistleblower’s’ Testimony No Longer Needed
Rod Rosenstein: 2019-09-11 All in the Comey Family
Rod Rosenstein: 2019-08-29 DOJ inspector general found all four Carter Page FISA warrants were illegally obtained, Joe diGenova says
Related:
Jessie Liu: 2019-09-13 US attorney recommends proceeding with charges against McCabe
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Home Front: Politix
Republicans Condemn FBI's Use of Surveillance Powers They Long Supported
2019-12-12
[WSJ] WASHINGTON‐One by one, Republican senators expressed outrage Wednesday that the Federal Bureau of Investigation had committed errors in how it sought and obtained surveillance on a former Trump campaign adviser, describing the findings contained in a new inspector general report as evidence of alarming privacy violations that could be wielded against any American.

The concerns echoed those made by civil liberties advocates for decades. But they came this time from self-described national security hawks who have long voted to renew and expand U.S. surveillance powers.

In dressing down the FBI during Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s testimony about his report on the origins of the FBI’s Russia investigation, several Republicans suggested they were open to major alterations of a post-Watergate intelligence law known as the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, or FISA.
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-Lurid Crime Tales-
FBI Lawyer Doctored Email to Make Carter Page Appear as a Russian Agent Instead of a CIA Source
2019-12-12
[PJ] On Wednesday, Inspector General Michael Horowitz spoke to the Senate Judiciary Committee about his report and the FBI's counterintelligence operation into the Trump campaign back in the last presidential election cycle. Senator Lindsey Graham confronted Horowitz and everyone else present with a shocking finding from Horowitz's report: the FBI lawyer supervising the FISA process, named Clinesmith, purposefully doctored an email to make former Trump adviser Carter Page appear as a Russian agent rather than as a CIA source, which he actually was.

"When you read this report," Graham said today, "is that a lawyer supervising the FISA process at the FBI, according to Mr. Horowitz, doctored an email from the CIA to the FBI and he's going to be referred for criminal prosecution."

"Why is that important?" Graham then asked rhetorically. "Carter Page, who has been on the receiving end of all this, the foundation to believe he was a foreign agent comes from a dossier that we will talk about in a minute. In that dossier provided by Christopher Steele -- and we will talk about him in a minute -- they claim that Page meets with three people known to be Russians, Russian agents, people associated with Russia."

Mr. Page still viewed as totally oblivious (unwitting) regarding his clandestine involvement in the Trump Campaign.
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-Signs, Portents, and the Weather-
Hunter Biden Baby Mommy Wants Answers About Burisma
2019-12-12
[TOWNHALL] Last month, a DNA test confirmed that Hunter Biden is the father of a child born in August 2018. The mother, Lunden Roberts, reportedly worked at Mpire Gentlemen's Club in Washington, D.C., where Biden frequented. That's how the two allegedly met. Roberts has, understandably, gone after Biden for child support, health care and legal fees.

Biden filed a motion in the Arkansas Circuit Court of Independence for a protective order to shield his financial records from being made public a few weeks ago. A judge demanded both Roberts and Biden hand over five years worth of financial records, meaning he has to reveal his position at the Ukrainian gas company Burisma and just how much money they paid him, Daily Mail reported. It has been estimated that he was paid anywhere between $50,000 to $83,000 a month to sit on Burisma's board, despite having no natural energy experience.

The judge presiding over the case originally wanted only three years of financial records but ultimately said he needed five years of records to determine how much child support Biden needs to cough up.

Roberts wants Biden to admit he sat on the board of Burisma and received a monthly paycheck from the company and that "he 'or an entity owned, controlled or under your direction or supervision' received money from a Chinese person or entity for foreign and domestic investment purposes."

The judge in the case has made it very clear that he doesn't want to drag this out any further and wants to make a decision soon.

"I do not want to have this [drag] out nor do I want to have to drag out the monies these individuals may have received in any form or fashion. I anticipate paternity as well as custody, support and visitation being established at our next hearing," the judge wrote.

Related:
Hunter Biden: 2019-12-09 Joe Biden says Hunter will not engage in foreign business if he wins 2020 race
Hunter Biden: 2019-12-09 Former Ukraine Prosecutor Shokin: Joe Biden "Outraged We Seized Burisma Assets", Could No Longer Pay His Son…
Hunter Biden: 2019-12-06 Sudan PM sees progress on US terror list removal
Related:
Lunden Roberts: 2019-12-05 Will The FISA Report Address Whether Christopher Steele Lied To The FBI
Lunden Roberts: 2019-12-05 Hunter Biden will now have to hand over FIVE YEARS of financial records
Lunden Roberts: 2019-12-01 Ukraine Considers Opening New Investigations
Related:
Burisma: 2019-12-10 Biden blames staff, says nobody ‘warned’ him son’s Ukraine job could raise conflict
Burisma: 2019-12-10 Louie Gohmert goes off during hearing, stops Nadler in his tracks with final punch
Burisma: 2019-12-09 Joe Biden says Hunter will not engage in foreign business if he wins 2020 race
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-Lurid Crime Tales-
Steele's Own ‘Primary Sub-Source' Cast Doubt On Steele's Collusion Claims
2019-12-11
[The Federalist] With the release of Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s FISA report, it is clear that Christopher Steele, the man who kickstarted the Mueller investigation with his infamous "dossier," exaggerated hearsay claims and reported them as fact. Here to corroborate this was Steele’s very own "Primary Sub-source."

The identity of Steele’s primary sub-source has not been disclosed to the public. Steele never even disclosed the identity of his primary sub-source to the FBI. The FBI identified him or her by January 2017, however, and arranged a meeting.

In the meeting, the primary sub-source told the FBI "that he/she had not seen Steele’s reports until they became public that month, and that he/she made statements indicating that Steele misstated or exaggerated the Primary Sub-source’s statements in multiple sections of the reporting," the report reads.

In March 2017, the primary sub-source was questioned again by a Washington Field Office agent and repeated the same conclusion: that Steele was exaggerating hearsay as conclusive.
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Home Front: Politix
Kimberly Stassel's Takeaways from the IG Report
2019-12-11
[Thread Reader of Kimberly Stassel's Twitter postings - H.T. The Boningo Report]

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.
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-Lurid Crime Tales-
BREAKING: US Attorney John Durham Releases Statement Disputing IG Report Conclusions
2019-12-10
[Gateway Pundit] The DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz finally released his report on FISA abuses on Monday.

The report revealed what we knew to be true all along ‐ the FBI defrauded the FISA court and purposely omitted exculpatory information from the FISA judges in order to obtain FOUR FISA warrants on Trump campaign advisor Carter Page.

Horowitz, however concluded that the FBI investigation into Trump was not politically motivated ‐ and John Durham hit back.

US Attorney from Connecticut John Durham immediately released a statement following the release of the FISA report and disputed Horowitz’s findings and conclusions.
"I have the utmost respect for the mission of the Office of Inspector General and the comprehensive work that went into the report prepared by Mr. Horowitz and his staff. However, our investigation is not limited to developing information from within component parts of the Justice Department. Our investigation has included developing information from other persons and entities, both in the U.S. and outside of the U.S. 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," John Durham said in a rare statement.

John Durham was tapped by Bill Barr earlier this year to conduct an investigation into the origins of Spygate.

Mr. Durham has already traveled to Italy and other countries as part of his sprawling investigation into how Obama’s corrupt FBI and intel agencies launched and carried out the largest spy operation of a presidential candidate in US history.

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-Lurid Crime Tales-
BOMBSHELL: FBI ‘Altered' Evidence That Falsely Cast Carter Page As Russian Spy, Report Says
2019-12-10
[Wire] Department of Justice Inspector General (IG) Michael Horowitz’s report on alleged FBI misconduct in surveilling the Trump campaign found that the FBI "altered" evidence that falsely cast former Trump presidential campaign adviser Carter Page as a Russian spy.

The Federalist co-founder Sean Davis and Fox News contributor Mollie Hemingway wrote that the report "found that the FBI falsely claimed to the FISA Court not only that Carter Page was a Russian agent, but also falsely claimed that an unnamed intelligence agency had told the FBI that Page was ’not a source’ in their efforts to surveil and curtail Russian intelligence efforts."

"Page, who had previously been an informant and witness for the United States in a federal espionage case against a Russian intelligence official, was targeted by the Obama FBI as a Russian spy helping Putin to steal the election from Hillary Clinton in 2016," The Federalist reported. "According to the IG report, before the FBI and DOJ went to the FISA Court to apply for a warrant to spy on Page, an unnamed U.S. intelligence agency had told the FBI that Carter Page had previously assisted that agency’s efforts against Russian spies. Although exculpatory information about potential spy targets is required in spy warrant applications, Obama’s FBI and DOJ deliberately withheld that information from the spy court in order to paint Page in the worst possible light."

"Ahead of an application to renew the spy warrant in 2017, a top FBI lawyer doctored evidence from the unnamed agency which confirmed that contrary to FBI claims that he was a Russian spy, Page had in fact assisted the United States in its efforts to counter Russian operations," The Federalist added. "An e-mail from the agency that clearly stated Page was ’a source’ for them was doctored by Kevin Clinesmith, a top FBI national security lawyer, to give the opposite impression to the federal spy court."
Emphasis added at para #2.
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Home Front: Politix
Trump attacks 'pathetic' Fox News for airing 'loser' Rep. Eric Swalwell and other Democrats
2019-12-10
[USATODAY] President Donald Trump
...The tack in the backside of the Democratic Party...
again slammed Fox News for giving airtime to Rep. Eric Swalwell and his other Democratic critics, tweeting Sunday that it was "pathetic" how "Fox panders."

"Don’t get why @FoxNews puts losers on like @RepSwalwell (who got ZERO as presidential candidate before quitting), Pramila Jayapal, David Cicilline and others who are Radical Left Haters?" Trump tweeted listing three Democratic House members who have frequently spoken out against the president and his policies.

"The Dems wouldn’t let @FoxNews get near their bad ratings debates, yet Fox panders. Pathetic!" he wrote, referring to the Democratic National Committee's decision not to let Fox News host the party's primary debates.

Rep. David Cicilline, D-Ri.I., fired back on Twitter, telling Trump, "while you’re busy tweeting insults, we’re busy working to honor our oath of office to protect and defend the constitution and safeguard our democracy," along with a photo of himself with Swalwell, Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., and Rep. Joe Neguse, D-Colo.

"Thanks for watching, Mr. President. Why won’t you testify about your attempt to get Ukraine to interfere in the 2020 election?" he added.

Related:
Eric Swalwell: 2019-12-02 Democratic congresswoman says it doesn’t matter if Trump quid pro quo didn’t happen
Eric Swalwell: 2019-11-26 Maxine Waters: Ben Carson Lacks the ‘Intelligence’ to Be HUD Secretary
Eric Swalwell: 2019-11-20 Rep. Eric Swalwell appears to fart on live TV
Related:
Pramila Jayapal: 2019-12-08 Resolution in US Congress seeks end to repression in Kashmir valley
Pramila Jayapal: 2019-11-23 Dem Rep: Trump ‘Trying to Use the Court System’ Is ‘Obstruction of Justice’
Pramila Jayapal: 2019-07-15 AOC's Brain
Related:
David Cicilline: 2019-08-20 Rep. Pete King off the reservation again, this time about firearms
David Cicilline: 2018-12-05 Dem Congressman: As Many as 40 Democrats Will Run for President
David Cicilline: 2018-11-01 Top Planned Parenthood Contributions to House and Senate Races
Related:
Democratic National Committee: 2019-12-05 DOJ watchdog finds FBI omitted details about Steele dossier in FISA renewal applications
Democratic National Committee: 2019-12-05 AG Barr Disagrees with IG on Whether Trump Surveillance Justified
Democratic National Committee: 2019-12-03 Buttigieg Agrees That Illegal Aliens Are ‘Reclaiming Stolen Land’
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