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December 06, 2018

John Solomon: House Republicans Demand Email Chain Between Comey and Senior DOJ Officials, Which They Say Provide "Damning" Evidence that the FBI and DOJ Knew Their "Collusion" Case, and Their FISA Warrant, Were False From the Start

This whole article should be read. I've excerpted the newest bits from it, but it's all pretty good, and best read as a complete piece.

Just before Thanksgiving, House Republicans amended the list of documents they'd like President Trump to declassify in the Russia investigation. With little fanfare or explanation, the lawmakers, led by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), added a string of emails between the FBI and the Department of Justice (DOJ) to their wish list.

Sources tell me the targeted documents may provide the most damning evidence to date of potential abuses of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), evidence that has been kept from the majority of members of Congress for more than two years.

The email exchanges included then-FBI Director James Comey, key FBI investigators in the Russia probe and lawyers in the DOJ’s national security division, and they occurred in early to mid-October, before the FBI successfully secured a FISA warrant to spy on Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.

The email exchanges show the FBI was aware -- before it secured the now-infamous warrant -- that there were intelligence community concerns about the reliability of the main evidence used to support it: the Christopher Steele dossier.

The exchanges also indicate FBI officials were aware that Steele, the former MI6 British intelligence operative then working as a confidential human source for the bureau, had contacts with news media reporters before the FISA warrant was secured.


Lawmakers now want to question Comey about whether the information in the October email string contributed to the former FBI director's assessment.


Congressional investigators also have growing evidence that some evidence inserted into the fourth and final application for the FISA -- a document signed by current Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein --was suspect.


And the entire warrant, the FBI's own document shows, was being rushed to approval by two agents who hated Trump and stated in their own texts that they wanted to "stop" the Republican from becoming president.

Meanwhile, former prosecutor Margaret Cleveland suggests questions that must be asked of James Comey in his deposition to Congress.

Specifically, the committee should inquire about the involvement of the DOJ (Loretta Lynch, Sally Yates, Bruce Ohr, Rod Rosenstein, and Andrew Weissmann), the State Department (John Kerry, Victoria Nuland, Jonathan Winer, and Elizabeth Dibble), the CIA (John Brennan), the National Intelligence Services (James Clapper), the congressional offices (Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein, former Democratic Sen. Harry Reid, the late Republican Sen. John McCain, and Democratic Reps. Adam Schiff and Mark Warner). Comey should also be asked about any involvement of, or knowledge by, Obama administration officials (Susan Rice, Samantha Power, Ben Rhodes, Denis McDonough, and Shailagh Murray), and former President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden.

After having Comey identify all the U.S. government actors, the committees should move on to foreign governments’ involvement, following the same format: Comey should be asked whether he knows of, or heard of, the involvement of any foreign governments, including foreign assets, informants, or confidential sources. Here the United Kingdom, Australia, and the Italian governments, the British and Italian intelligence agencies, and Sir Andrew Wood, Sir Richard Dearlove, and Alexander Downer, are of special interest.

Finally, Comey should be questioned on the involvement of private organizations or individuals with the government’s investigation into Trump and the Trump campaign, by, for instance serving as government contractors, sharing information with investigators, or receiving and publishing leaks from the government.

The former FBI director should be asked to identify all outside organizations and individuals connected to Spygate, starting with the Democratic National Committee, the Hillary Clinton campaign, Hillary Clinton, PerkinsCoie, Fusion GPS (Glenn Simpson, Nellie Ohr), Orbis, David Kramer, then moving on to the other names raised in connection with the Russia probe, and ending with an open-ended narrative to discover whether there are other unknowns in the shadows.

Good list. I expect a lot of lapses in memory, peppered in between refusals to answer based on "National Security Concerns," which are of course really Job Security Concerns and Prosecutorial Concerns.

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posted by Ace of Spades at 05:48 PM

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