How the DOJ and the FBI abused their powers in support of crooked Hillary Clinton 24

The House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence today made public a committee memo with information on abuses of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. Chairman Nunes issued the following statement:

The Committee has discovered serious violations of the public trust, and the American people have a right to know when officials in crucial institutions are abusing their authority for political purposes. Our intelligence and law enforcement agencies exist to defend the American people, not to be exploited to target one group on behalf of another. It is my hope that the Committee’s actions will shine a light on this alarming series of events so we can make reforms that allow the American people to have full faith and confidence in their governing institutions.

 

January 18, 2018

To: HPSCI Majority Members

From: HPSCI Majority Staff

Subject: Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act Abuses at the Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation

Purpose

This memorandum provides Members an update on significant facts relating to the Committee’s ongoing investigation into the Department of Justice (DOJ) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and their use of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) during the 2016 presidential election cycle. Our findings, which are detailed below, 1) raise concerns with the legitimacy and legality of certain DOJ and FBI interactions with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC), and 2) represent a troubling breakdown of legal processes established to protect the American people from abuses related to the FISA process.

Investigation Update

On October 21, 2016, DOJ and FBI sought and received a FISA probable cause order (not under Title VII) authorizing electronic surveillance on Carter Page from the FISC. Page is a U.S. citizen who served as a volunteer advisor to the Trump presidential campaign. Consistent with requirements under FISA, the application had to be first certified by the Director or Deputy Director of the FBI. It then required the approval of the Attorney General, Deputy Attorney General (DAG), or the Senate-confirmed Assistant Attorney General for the National Security Division.

The FBI and DOJ obtained one initial FISA warrant targeting Carter Page and three FISA renewals from the FISC. As required by statute (50 U.S.C. §,1805(d)(l)), a FISA order on an American citizen must be renewed by the FISC every 90 days and each renewal requires a separate finding of probable cause. Then-Director James Comey signed three FISA applications in question on behalf of the FBI, and Deputy Director Andrew McCabe signed one. Then-DAG Sally Yates, then-Acting DAG Dana Boente, and DAG Rod Rosenstein each signed one or more FISA applications on behalf of DOJ.

Due to the sensitive nature of foreign intelligence activity, FISA submissions (including renewals) before the FISC are classified. As such, the public’s confidence in the integrity of the FISA process depends on the court’s ability to hold the government to the highest standard—particularly as it relates to surveillance of American citizens. However, the FISC’s rigor in protecting the rights of Americans, which is reinforced by 90-day renewals of surveillance orders, is necessarily dependent on the government’s production to the court of all material and relevant facts. This should include information potentially favorable to the target of the FISA application that is known by the government. In the case of Carter Page, the government had at least four independent opportunities before the FISC to accurately provide an accounting of the relevant facts. However, our findings indicate that, as described below, material and relevant information was omitted.

1) The “dossier” compiled by Christopher Steele (Steele dossier) on behalf of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Hillary Clinton campaign formed an essential part of the Carter Page FISA application. Steele was a longtime FBI source who was paid over $160,000 by the DNC and Clinton campaign, via the law firm Perkins Coie and research firm Fusion GPS, to obtain derogatory information on Donald Trump’s ties to Russia.

  1. a) Neither the initial application in October 2016, nor any of the renewals, disclose or reference the role of the DNC, Clinton campaign, or any party/campaign in funding Steele’s efforts, even though the political origins of the Steele dossier were then known to senior DOJ and FBI officials.
  2. b) The initial FISA application notes Steele was working for a named U.S. person, but does not name Fusion GPS and principal Glenn Simpson, who was paid by a U.S. law firm (Perkins Coie) representing the DNC (even though it was known by DOJ at the time that political actors were involved with the Steele dossier). The application does not mention Steele was ultimately working on behalf of—and paid by—the DNC and Clinton campaign, or that the FBI had separately authorized payment to Steele for the same information.

2) The Carter Page FISA application also cited extensively a September 23, 2016, Yahoo News article by Michael Isikoff, which focuses on Page’s July 2016 trip to Moscow. This article does not corroborate the Steele dossier because it is derived from information leaked by Steele himself to Yahoo News. The Page FISA application incorrectly assesses that Steele did not directly provide information to Yahoo News. Steele has admitted in British court filings that he met with Yahoo News—and several other outlets—in September 2016 at the direction of Fusion GPS. Perkins Coie was aware of Steele’s initial media contacts because they hosted at least one meeting in Washington D.C. in 2016 with Steele and Fusion GPS where this matter was discussed.

  1. a) Steele was suspended and then terminated as an FBI source for what the FBI defines as the most serious of violations—an unauthorized disclosure to the media of his relationship with the FBI in an October 30, 2016, Mother Jones article by David Corn. Steele should have been terminated for his previous undisclosed contacts with Yahoo and other outlets in September—before the Page application was submitted to the FISC in October—but Steele improperly concealed from and lied to the FBI about those contacts.
  2. b) Steele’s numerous encounters with the media violated the cardinal rule of source handling—maintaining confidentiality—and demonstrated that Steele had become a less than reliable source for the FBI.

3) Before and after Steele was terminated as a source, he maintained contact with DOJ via then-Associate Deputy Attorney General Bruce Ohr, a senior DOJ official who worked closely with Deputy Attorneys General Yates and later Rosenstein. Shortly after the election, the FBI began interviewing Ohr, documenting his communications with Steele. For example, in September 2016, Steele admitted to Ohr his feelings against then-candidate Trump when Steele said he “was desperate that Donald Trump not get elected and was passionate about him not being president.” This clear evidence of Steele’s bias was recorded by Ohr at the time and subsequently in official FBI files—but not reflected in any of the Page FISA applications.

  1. a) During this same time period, Ohr’s wife was employed by Fusion GPS to assist in the cultivation of opposition research on Trump. Ohr later provided the FBI with all of his wife’s opposition research, paid for by the DNC and Clinton campaign via Fusion GPS. The Ohrs’ relationship with Steele and Fusion GPS was inexplicably concealed from the FISC.

4) According to the head of the FBI’s counterintelligence division, Assistant Director Bill Priestap, corroboration of the Steele dossier was in its “infancy” at the time of the initial Page FISA application. After Steele was terminated, a source validation report conducted by an independent unit within FBI assessed Steele’s reporting as only minimally corroborated. Yet, in early January 2017, Director Comey briefed President-elect Trump on a summary of the Steele dossier, even though it was—according to his June 2017 testimony—“salacious and unverified.” While the FISA application relied on Steele’s past record of credible reporting on other unrelated matters, it ignored or concealed his anti-Trump financial and ideological motivations. Furthermore, Deputy Director McCabe testified before the Committee in December 2017 that no surveillance warrant would have been sought from the FISC without the Steele dossier information.

5) The Page FISA application also mentions information regarding fellow Trump campaign advisor George Papadopoulos, but there is no evidence of any cooperation or conspiracy between Page and Papadopoulos. The Papadopoulos information triggered the opening of an FBI counterintelligence investigation in late July 2016 by FBI agent Pete Strzok. Strzok was reassigned by the Special Counsel’s Office to FBI Human Resources for improper text messages with his mistress, FBI Attorney Lisa Page (no known relation to Carter Page), where they both demonstrated a clear bias against Trump and in favor of Clinton, whom Strzok had also investigated. The Strzok/Lisa Page texts also reflect extensive discussions about the investigation, orchestrating leaks to the media, and include a meeting with Deputy Director McCabe to discuss an “insurance” policy against President Trump’s election.

The investigation into the alleged ties to Russia of presidential candidate Donald Trump by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, is itself the poisoned fruit of the poisoned tree, and anything it finds is also poisoned. So will it be called off?

Are the FISA court judges to be held to account for accepting a fraudulent case for the surveillance of a US citizen?

Is there a constitutional crisis as a result of this dirty conspiracy entered into by top law-enforcement agents?

  • Jeanne

    Thanks, Jillian, for this excellent synopsis. Is it okay if I print it out for my husband, who has been trying to keep up with the news, but is way too busy currently?

    • Go ahead, Jeanne. Everything is for printing out. The more disseminated the better.

  • Cogito

    I’ve noticed an increasing number of largely incoherent posts lately.
    These may or may not have interesting things to say about these agonizingly crucial issues. Hard to say.

    For the sake of clarity, may I suggest that everyone tries to use the Queen’s English or at least make efforts to use standard grammar,vocabulary, and spelling (UK or US versions)?

    • Jeanne

      All true. But…due to the state of affairs, both national and international, it is sometimes good for the …let me see, what word should I use so that all readers will understand my meaning…soul. Now I will be banned for sure. Point taken, however, Cogito.

      • Zerothruster

        Soul, spirit, in their figurative senses. Or, good for morale. ☺

    • Zerothruster

      Dear Cogito:
      Like Jeanne says, point taken.
      Don L. and I were enjoying a little late night Navy jive, while the smoking lamp was still lit (and so were we — or at least, I).

  • Don L

    Was KT Mc Farland a mole? Why do I remember her having some part with something in Nobama days? Fired for her part in naming Papadopalous … What? Read books – 3 Days of the Condor – today’s media: = Chauncey Gardner. (I know it does – rhyme)

    “Divorce American Style” … Deny, Deny, Deny! Wife walks in on hubby w/other; she screams and shouts. Hubby and other get up and get dressed, make bed, other leaves – all the while hubby is saying notthing happened, what girl, make bed?. etc. Room normal hubby dressed – wife totally confused (it was a movie). It is how the left is behaving: Deny … as ludicrous as it is … too many are capable of being confused. I do not think the number is as large as once was ‘n were; are n’ is.

    • liz

      Exactly! The media and Democrats (having nothing else) are trying as hard as they can to “gaslight” us. It really is infuriating enough to drive you crazy.
      In the face of bald, undeniable facts, they continue to spout garbage about TRUMP colluding with Russians, treason, undermining our institutions… which is all true – – – about THEM!!!

  • liz

    Not surprising at all – confirms what we already knew – that Leftists have infiltrated and corrupted every branch of government, and have no problem breaking the law to get what they want. Obama was just the tip of the iceberg.
    This had better poke a major drain-hole in the swamp.

    • Don L

      Have you followed this Comey’s reported tweets? The more revealed, this guy is like the Burt Lancaster character in Fletcher Nevell’s “movie/book “7 Days In May”. Our savior from evil animal spirits.

      • liz

        I think the guy is delusional.

        • Zerothruster

          That may be just extreme audacity. If so, what’s the basis for his confidence?

  • Don L

    Watching FOX, their socialist Shepard Smith and the “JR”, Wallace, read the memo and see nothing wrong. Thaings that still make you go, hmmm.

    The notion of “should include info favoring …” is weak, but whereas if material info MUST & SHALL be forthcoming in seeking the warrant … PRIMA FACIA PROBLEM – except in the delusional, and until now, me hopes, above the law is the rule, DC.

    DC Judges … ? LOL. Yet, even if the judge may have a proclivity to accept the bad info, but the bad info was still delivered to dupe – unless, both were already in league and just rubber stamping it all.

    • Zerothruster

      re last section: “FYI: DOW @ 6 month trend… ”
      A fellow Fibonacci fan !
      But really, Don L., sometimes I can’t understand a blessed thing you’re saying. That said, it’s clear you have a style. Bravo Zulu !

      • Don L

        I can’t post the candlestick chart w/ Fib plotted against low to top … back to 1st support – that’s one tech analysts – Trendline rules – 4th time touching midterm ‘support’ (normal upward slope) … BUY GOLD! LOL Turn in a chit for some Whiskey Charlie and a Tango R&R!

        • Zerothruster

          Chit denied.
          Sounds like you’ve had enough.

          • Don L

            Aye Aye SIR … Hand Salute …TO!

            • Zerothruster

              As you were.
              Carry On.

            • Don L
            • Zerothruster

              Copy that.
              Will take under advisement.

            • Don L

              Ought to have side chats … how are you a FIB fan? Not that I’m a math fella … cab driver if ya didn’t know.

            • Zerothruster

              Later!
              Lights out.

            • Jeanne

              This delightful chatter had improved my mood for the day. Thanks Don and Zerothruster. A cab driver, who would have thunk it? And…a pirate. LOL

  • Zerothruster

    There had to have been laws broken in all of this. It was clearly a conspiracy to defraud the American people, and may (I’m speculating) be technically treasonous. Like Judge Jeanine Pirro says, people need to be taken away in handcuffs.