|Home Front: Politix|
|Susan Rice a VP Candidate in Order to Prevent Durham Indictments Prior to Election?|
Lee Smith has a provocative article up at Tablet Magazine on the prospects — and rationale — for Susan Rice to be named as the Vice-Presidential selection of Joe Biden. Smith notes that while Rice’s name has been ostensibly part of the list of potential selections since Biden pledged to name "woman of color" as his running mate, there has been a recent "boomlet" in favorable coverage of her in the Democrat establishment house organs the NYT, WaPo, and Politico just to name three. So, what is driving this sudden emergence — other than the fact that every other "woman of color" having been given a "road test" has come up wanting? How bad are things behind the scenes really when the face of the Obama Administration’s Benghazi lies becomes a leading candidate for Vice President?
Susan Rice has a rather modest historical involvement in politics.
...Most famously, she wrote the "CYA" memo as her last official act on the day of Pres. Trump’s inauguration, memorializing for the record that Obama had told Sally Yates and Jim Comey that he wanted the investigation into the Trump Campaign’s ties to Russia done "by the book."
Attorney General William Barr has stated that DOJ will take no action prior to election day — in terms of indictments — which could have the potential for influencing the election. At the same time he has noted that to his knowledge, no one running for election is the subject of any DOJ investigation. That would seem to rule out Joe Biden — rightly or wrongly. A good case could be made that Biden’s current mental state would likely render him unable to competently assist in his defense, and on that basis would not be competent to stand trial even if he were under investigation. It’s certainly possible THAT is the reason upon which AG Barr has ruled him out as a subject of any potential prosecution, and not because he and others associated with him might have engaged in criminal wrongdoing. AG Barr would be grinning like the Cheshire Cat if he was to offer that explanation for why Joe Biden is not seen as a target. Not competent enough to stand trial, but more than competent enough to serve as Democrat Party candidate for President. Put that on a bumper sticker.
But is Susan Rice clear of the Durham investigation? That’s hard to know. We know from very early text messages between Peter Strzok and Lisa Page that they exchanged messages about "The White House wants to know everything we are doing." From an organizational perspective, the most likely receptacle for the flow of information on Crossfire Hurricane from the FBI to the White House would be to the Chief of Staff or the National Security Advisor. It seems to me doubtful that this is just a passive one-way flow of information from the Bureau to the WH, with no commentary or "direction" going the other direction, especially on matters of counterintelligence. The more natural source of that kind of "direction" would be from the NSA, not the Chief of Staff.
But as a career bureaucrat and creature of Washington think tanks, Rice has zero experience in elective politics and has never campaigned as a candidate. She is pretty much a denizen of Washington DC, so there is no natural constituency that she brings with her from a particular state or region of the country. It’s hard to see how she helps Biden on the electoral map — other than by being a "woman of color" which Biden was already committed to.
Now, I just had an interesting thought. Suppose Obama decided that he's a women? Could certain people argue that term limits do not apply to that new person: Barackia Obama?
If Rice is part of Durham’s case, even without Obama or Biden being named, that "she’et" is going to splash onto them regardless of what AG Barr promised.
|Home Front: Politix|
|Former FBI lawyer Lisa Page has been hired as an NBC News & MSNBC National Security & Legal Analyst.|
|-Lurid Crime Tales-|
|The FBI documents that put Barack Obama in the ‘Obamagate' narrative|
|[Just the News] Just 17 days before President Trump took office in January 2017, then-FBI counterintelligence agent Peter Strzok texted bureau lawyer Lisa Page, his mistress, to express concern about sharing sensitive Russia probe evidence with the departing Obama White House.|
Strzok had just engaged in a conversation with his boss, then-FBI Assistant Director William Priestap, about evidence from the investigation of incoming National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, codenamed Crossfire Razor, or "CR" for short.
The evidence in question were so-called "tech cuts" from intercepted conversations between Flynn and Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak, according to the texts and interviews with officials familiar with the conversations.
Strzok related Priestap’s concerns about the potential the evidence would be politically weaponized if outgoing Director of National Intelligence James Clapper shared the intercept cuts with the White House and President Obama, a well-known Flynn critic.
"He, like us, is concerned with over sharing," Strzok texted Page on Jan. 3, 2017, relating his conversation with Priestap. "Doesn’t want Clapper giving CR cuts to WH. All political, just shows our hand and potentially makes enemies."
Page seemed less concerned, knowing that the FBI was set in three days to release its initial assessment of Russian interference in the U.S. election.
"Yeah, but keep in mind we were going to put that in the doc on Friday, with potentially larger distribution than just the DNI," Page texted back.
Strzok responded, "The question is should we, particularly to the entirety of the lame duck usic [U.S Intelligence Community] with partisan axes to grind."
That same day Strzok and Page also discussed in text messages a drama involving one of the Presidential Daily Briefings for Obama.
|Home Front: Politix|
|Republican Garcia Has Early Lead in CA25 House Election|
Tuesday night they appeared poised to flip a Democrat-held seat back to the Republican column for the first time since 1998, when Wilson was wrapping up his second term in office. This time the election comes amid a global pandemic and stay-at-home orders that turned normal campaign strategies and last-minute get-out-the-vote efforts upside down.
By Tuesday night, former Navy fighter pilot and Raytheon executive Mike Garcia had a sizable 12-point lead over Assemblywoman Christy Smith, 56% to 44%. Both had spent the past six months vying to replace former Rep. in a special election after Hill, a onetime Democratic rising star, resigned last October amid a sex scandal.
The race has garnered national attention, considered as both a bellwether for the political climate ahead of November and a glimpse of new campaign dynamics in the COVID-19 era.
California’s 25th Congressional District is an exurban district north of Los Angeles that went for in 2016. Two years later, Hill knocked off the incumbent GOP congressman, Steve Knight, by eight points amid a blue tidal wave that decimated the state’s Republican congressional delegation and handed Democrats control of the House.
Republicans tend to fare better in California in elections attracting fewer voters, but Garcia appears to have exceeded party expectations in a race that attracted record participation for a special election. Some 34% of registered voters returned their mail-in ballots, while just a smattering of voters turned up in person at a limited number of polling places.
In an unexpected twist, the all mail-in voting that Democrats across the state demanded and Republicans criticized appeared to benefit Garcia. Older Republican voters returned their ballots in much higher numbers than younger Democrats in the district.
"I won’t give a victory speech tonight, I’ll save that for tomorrow night, but things are looking very encouraging," Garcia said on a conference call Tuesday night while thanking hundreds of campaign volunteers and staff. "Hopefully by tomorrow morning, we’ll have enough data to declare victory, but it is looking very good."
Garcia now fills a seat vacated in November when Democrat Katie Hill resigned amid allegations of inappropriate relationships with staff members. The term expires in January.
“While it's critical that we ensure every vote is counted and recorded, we believe that the current tally shows Mike Garcia is the likely victor in the May 12th election," Smith said in a statement. “As such, I'd like to congratulate him."
Garcia and Smith will face off again on Nov. 3.
With more than 143,000 votes counted Tuesday night, Garcia held 56% of the vote. Smith, a state assemblywoman from Santa Clarita, had 44% and trailed by more than 17,000 votes.
More than 420,000 ballots were mailed to voters in Los Angeles and Ventura counties for the election and more are expected to arrive at election offices later this week. They need to be postmarked no later than Tuesday's election day.
"After election day, there are still many outstanding ballots to be counted," Los Angeles County officials said in a news release, referring to incoming vote by mail ballots, conditional and provisional ballots. They said their next vote-count update would be Friday.
Garcia and Smith will compete again in the November election for a full two-year term. The 25th District runs from Santa Clarita to Simi Valley with about 70,000 registered voters in Ventura County and more than 350,000 in Los Angeles County.
|Home Front: Politix|
|Early Results Point to a Blue-to-Red Flip as Mike Garcia Leads In CA-25's Special Election|
|[RedState] As the nation is aware, a special election was held Tuesday in California to fill the unexpired term of former Rep. Katie Hill, who resigned after an ethics scandal in October 2019. In the last month both President Trump and Barack Obama have relentlessly pushed for their party's candidate on social media, as have heavyweights from both sides of the aisle.|
As of 11:00 p.m. Pacific, it looks like Republican Mike Garcia is going to fill that term, flipping the seat from blue to red – the first such flip in more than 20 years. In fact, Garcia holds a 12-point lead over Democrat Christy Smith.
|-Lurid Crime Tales-|
|[National Review] A review of weekend news coverage and commentary shows that mainstream media have gone into full "Protect Obama" mode.|
Evidence released last week — including, but not limited to, House Intelligence Committee transcripts showing that multiple top-level Obama administration officials were lying to the public for three years about Russian collusion — indicates that former president Barack Obama wasn’t merely aware of what was going on; he was hip-deep in what increasingly appears to be one of the greatest political scandals in American history.
For other than the most sycophantic and credulous media personalities, Obama’s involvement isn’t much of a surprise. The August 5, 2016 email from Peter Strzok to Lisa Page stating, "the White House is running this," followed by the September 2016 Page text to Strzok stating, "POTUS wants to know everything we’re doing" suggested the obvious: An operation targeting a presidential campaign and then an incoming presidential administration isn’t a mere freelance effort cooked up by a few rogue FBI personnel in their spare time. An operation of that magnitude and import must be blessed from the very top.
Indeed, the January 5, 2017 White House meeting with President Obama, vice president Joe Biden, FBI director James Comey, deputy attorney general Sally Yates, director of national intelligence James Clapper, CIA director John Brennan, and national security adviser Susan Rice (which meeting was the subject of Rice’s mother-of-all C.Y.A. emails to herself on Inauguration Day) suggests that Obama wasn’t merely kept informed of the Russia collusion fraud, he was providing direction.
Notwithstanding the IRS targeting of politically disfavored citizens, Fast and Furious gunrunning, the VA debacle, Benghazi, surveillance of reporters, and other scandals, an adoring mainstream press consistently parrots Obama’s risible claim that his administration was scandal-free. But the Russia-collusion hoax dwarfs all the other Obama scandals and malfeasance combined.
Obama knows this. So do the media. They also know most of Obama’s "achievements" haven’t even survived Trump’s first term. The media-enabled fiction of a scandal-free administration is nearly all that remains of the Obama legacy. So it must be maintained. After all, he’s progressives’ Lightworker. He validates their pieties, conceits, and presumptions.
That’s why we’re about to experience media prevarication, deflection, omission, and misrepresentation on a scale never before witnessed in political news coverage — even eclipsing that of the last three years. Obama must be protected, facts be damned. And if they spin furiously enough, they might even be rewarded with a Pulitzer.
|Strzok Made Major Edits to Lost Draft of Flynn-Questioning Report, Texts Indicate|
|[The Epoch Times] Peter Strzok, former FBI head of counterintelligence operations, significantly changed an early draft of the official FBI report from its questioning of Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, newly released texts messages indicate.|
To this day, the FBI hasn’t shown the early draft to Flynn. An eye-witness said the draft included exculpatory information, which was removed in the final version, Flynn’s lawyer, Sidney Powell, previously said.
Flynn, former head of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and former national security adviser to President Donald Trump, pleaded guilty on Dec. 1, 2017, to one count of lying to FBI agents during a Jan. 24, 2017, interview.
Agents are supposed to memorialize their interviews in an FD-302 form within five days, but the earliest 302 draft Flynn was provided was dated Feb. 10, 2017.
The new text messages suggest that an earlier version of the draft existed, either produced on Feb. 10 or earlier.
"Lisa you didn’t see it before my edits that went into what I sent you," Strzok texted after 10 p.m. on Feb. 10, 2017, to Lisa Page, his mistress and then-special counsel to FBI’s then-Deputy Director Andrew McCabe.
Strzok said he was "trying to not completely rewrite" the document "so as to save [redacted] voice."
According to Powell, Strzok and Page were editing the Flynn 302 and Strzok was referring to the Supervisory Special Agent (SSA) who co-conducted the interview with him. The Epoch Times and other media have identified the agent as Joe Pientka.
The texts show "that there in fact exists an original 302 document created by SSA," Powell said in an April 30 statement.
The FBI had no comment when asked to confirm or deny whether the texts pertained to the Flynn 302.
The failure to produce the draft 302 equals a violation of the court’s "Brady" order, which requires the government to hand over evidence helpful to the defense, Powell said.
"As repugnant as this conduct is on its face, the travel of this vital document establishes continuously—and until this day—the original FBI agents, the prosecutors, and FBI management’s determination to withhold exculpatory evidence required under Brady, among other violations of Gen. Flynn’s civil rights. They withheld it not only to try to convict an innocent man, but to hide their own crimes," she said.
|-Lurid Crime Tales-|
|CIA, DOJ Refuse To Acknowledge Whether Eric Ciaramella Records Exist|
|[Judicial Watch] The Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) each refused to either confirm or deny the existence of records related to Obama White House Ukrainian intelligence holdover Eric Ciaramella who is also charged with being the whistleblower at the heart of the Democrats’ recent impeachment proceedings kicked off last fall.|
Judicial Watch received two letters from the top government agencies that were sent in response to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuits filed in December. Judicial Watch reports that both the CIA and DOJ failed to provide communications between Ciaramella and former deep-state FBI operatives Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, or former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe. The group also requested communications records between Ciaramella and the Special Counsel’s Office.
"The CIA can neither confirm or deny the existence or nonexistence of records responsive to the requests," the CIA wrote in a letter to Judicial Watch.
|Home Front: Politix|
|Former Rep. Katie Hill Says ‘Biphobia’ Caused Her Resignation|
|[DAILYCALLER] Former Democratic Rep. claimed Thursday that "biphobia" played a major role in her resignation from Congress for allegedly violating House ethics rules.|
In an interview on Good Morning America with George Stephanopoulos, Hill said that she "made the right call" in stepping down from her position, blaming "biphobic" rhetoric and the "sensationalization" of bisexuality on the end of her career in Congress.
"There’s a fantasy element of it. There’s biphobia that is rampant still, and certainly a misunderstanding of what bisexuality is." (’Misogynistic Culture’: Rep. Katie Hill Calls Her Decision To Resign A ’Double Standard’)
She also blamed misogyny for her resignation, saying that it was because "we haven’t seen as many sex scandals with women."
"I feel so empowered"
Hill resigned from Congress last October days after explicit photos of her with a female campaign staffer were published by the conservative blog RedState, along with allegations of an affair with a male congressional aide. She denied the affair with her aide but admitted to and apologized for having a sexual relationship with the campaign staffer.
The was investigating the alleged affair with her congressional aide, which would have violated House ethics rules, at the time of Hill’s resignation. Speaker of the House also said at the time that Hill made "some errors in judgment that made her continued service as a Member untenable."
The former congresswoman also told Stephanopoulos that she contemplated suicide over the scandal but was stopped by the support of her family and s looking up to her.
"Of all the girls and young women that looked up to me... if the ultimate outcome was that this destroyed me and I then what does that tell them? That couldn’t be my final story."
|-Lurid Crime Tales-|
|Svetlana Lokhova: Money Trail of FBI Spy Will Expose Russia Hoax Origins|
|"Exposed".... that is if we can get anyone to follow the evidence and social network.|
"So you have 17 intelligence agencies in the United States with an $80 billion budget you have thousands if not tens of thousands of trained people working for your intelligence services and, yet, they seek out this complete outsider (Halper) right he’s not a trained investigator," she says, describing Halper as an overweight 74 year old.
"He’s somebody whose known...has a history of being involved in every single scandal for over forty years," said Lokhova. She says Halper’s money trail is the answer.
Lokhova isn’t the only one.
Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley’s sent a letter last year demanding answers on Halper’s contracts and the Office of Net Assessment. Grassley sent the request in a letter to Department of Defense Acting Secretary Mark Esper, after a Pentagon Inspector General investigation discovered that the office failed to conduct appropriate oversight of the contracts. Grassley urged Esper for the information.
According to Grassley’s office it is currently reviewing information sent from the Pentagon.
"The committee is currently reviewing information received recently from the Pentagon, in response to Grassley’s request," Taylor Foy, a spokesman for the committee, said in an earlier interview with this news site. Foy confirmed Grassley is continuing to investigate the matter.
According to the DoD Inspector General’s report the Office of Net Assessment (ONA)Contracting Officer’s Representatives (CORs) "did not maintain documentation of the work performed by Professor Halper or any communication that ONA personnel had with Professor Halper; therefore, ONA CORs could not provide sufficient documentation that Professor Halper conducted all of his work in accordance with applicable laws and regulations. We determined that while the ONA CORs established a file to maintain documents, they did not maintain sufficient documentation to comply with all the FAR requirements related to having a complete COR."
Lokhova tells me at length about the erroneous and inaccurate articles published about her and Flynn. She says it turned her life upside down. She also discusses the toll the lawsuits are taking on her family financially and why she intends to keep on fighting.
|Home Front: Culture Wars|
|John Bolton is back as Chairman of Gatestone advocacy group|
|[Jpost] John Bolton, a former national security adviser for the Trump administration, has returned to serve as chairman of the Gatestone Institute, a conservative US-based think tank he chaired before joining the National Security Council (NSC) in March 2018.|
Bolton sent an email to subscribers on Sunday, asking them to contribute to the institution and citing what he described as censorship in social media.
"At a time when Facebook censors, blocks, or removes Gatestone’s material, we refuse to be silenced; we continue to publish our carefully researched, accurate articles," Bolton wrote. "We need to combat this censorship that at the end is meant for all of us," he added. "To do this, Gatestone needs to strengthen its community of experts, to ensure their vital work continues to make its significant impact."
"The Christian population of the Middle East, there for 2,000 years, is being subjected to relentless persecution and forced conversion," Bolton said in his email. "The response of the mainstream media and almost all Western governments: Say nothing, do nothing."He also addressed criticism against Gatestone, writing: "During the past few years, we have seen many jihadist terror attacks across the West, killing hundreds of innocents in the US, , Belgium, Germany, and Spain. And let us not forget the steady drip-drip of jihadi "lone-wolf" knife attacks in Australia, , Israel, Germany, and the Netherlands."
"What is the response of the an leadership to our new reality? Denial, word games, and silence," Bolton wrote. "And verbal attacks on citizens who insist on talking about the threats we face. They call us ’Islamophobic’ or ’racist’ to try to silence us."
NBC reported in April 2018 that the advocacy group promoted misleading and false anti- news.
"Western governments have been successfully working with social media giants such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Microsoft to censor what they call ’hate speech’ ‐ meaning any criticism of Islam and unvetted immigration," Bolton said in his email.
|-Lurid Crime Tales-|
|CIA Director Gina Haspel Is Feeling the Heat as John Durham's Investigation Focuses on CIA Misconduct|
|[RedState] Why the CIA? Because though we know some, in the quaint words of FBI attorney Lisa Page in her texts to the adulterous Peter Strzok, "OCONUS lures" were approved, there seems to have been an unseemly amount of collaboration with foreign intelligence services in this whole mess. For instance, Christopher Steele’s professional associations were at least as strong with CIA as with the FBI. The whole incident involving George Papadopoulos seems almost entirely an intelligence undertaking. Joseph Mifsud was a Western intelligence asset...most likely Italian. He’s the guy who planted the story with Papadopoulos about the "dirt" the Russians had on Hillary Clinton. Alexander Downer, the former Australian diplomat who had an oh so casual conversation with Papadopoulos in a London bar and reported on that conversation to his superiors, is thought to be an MI6 asset. And we have to wonder why a senior Australian officials felt obliged to report this rumor through intelligence channels. Later on a mysterious woman, ’Azra Turk,’ was dangled in front of Papadopoulos in what appeared to have been an abortive ’honey pot’ operation, something much more in keeping with an intelligence rather than a law enforcement operation.|
And, of course, former CIA Director John Brennan was a driving force in the mainstreaming of the Steele Dossier, despite his own agency calling it an ’internet rumor,’ into the Russia Hoax an he has been one of the most vociferous voices pushing that Hoax in the media. And, because Brennan can’t have acted alone, that raises a host of questions about the actions of the CIA...especially considering that it is a CIA officer, Eric Ciarmarella, who acted as the "whistleblower" that set off the impeachment of President Trump.
But, as I note above, the walls seem to be closing in on Brennan and that has caused one of the leading purveyors of the Russia Hoax, Natasha Bertrand, to write a story basically framing this as a loyalty test for CIA Director Gina Haspel. The messenger, here, is the message. Bertrand was an uncritical stenographer for Fusion GPS to the extent that you often see her referred to as "Fusion Natasha."