The Schiff Obstruction

Readers of Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit will recall the philosopher’s withering comments about “the dogmatism of mere assertion” which yields naught but an empty and deceptive feeling: self-certitude.

I thought about Hegel’s comments this morning when looking through the Democrats’ attempted rebuttal of the memo released earlier this month by Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee.

It is interesting to compare the two memos, both as rhetorical artifacts and as substantive contributions to the debate over possible “Russian collusion” in the 2016 presidential election. Even a comparison of their physical appearance is revealing. Let’s start there.

The Republicans’ memo, overseen by Devin Nunes, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, is a three-and-a-half-page précis of findings from an ongoing oversight investigation into the behavior of the FBI and Department of Justice during the 2016 election cycle. It is prefaced by a brief letter from presidential counsel Donald McGahn to Congressman Nunes laying out the rationale for declassifying the memo and releasing it to the public. Each page of the memo is marked “UNCLASSIFIED” and the legend “TOP SECRET NOFORN” (for “no foreign nationals”) on each page is struck through with a heavy black stroke. Otherwise it is clean.

The Democrats’ memo, overseen by ranking minority member Adam Schiff, spills on to a tenth page. It is probably only about a half again as long as the Republicans’ memo, however, because—in addition to bearing the “Unclassified” stamps and strike-throughs of the “top secret” advisories—its text is littered with redactions: many passages of the text are blotted out. Were those redactions required by the FBI? By the executive branch? It was not said. Nor was it said why the Democrats did not take the redactions on board and present a clean text. I do not know the answer. My suspicion is that they wanted the blocks of black to stand as mute, non-specific but nonetheless graphically incriminating witnesses to their allegations.

For example, much of the memo deals with Carter Page, the American businessman who briefly served as a volunteer foreign policy advisor for the Trump campaign. In a section of the memo headed “Page’s Connections to Russian Government and Intelligence Officials” we encounter the following: “As DOJ described in detail to the Court, Page had an extensive record as”—as what? We don’t know. The juicy news is submerged beneath a minatory stroke of black.

Similarly, after informing us that a “Russian intelligence officer targeted Page for recruitment”—eyebrow raising, what?—we read that “Page showed”—another black stroke, starving knowledge but inflaming the imagination. What did Page show? Interest? Did he promise to smuggle the nuclear launch codes into Moscow? We don’t know. But we can think the worst.

My favorite of these little party favors comes in a discussion of Page’s alleged activities during the 2016 campaign. Remember: the issue that prompted Devin Nunes to compile and release his memo in the first place was the suspicion that the police power of the state had been mobilized to spy on an American citizen—Carter Page—for partisan ends. Remember: the FBI sought and obtained a warrant (actually, four successive warrants) from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to surveil Page. The first was granted in October 2016, just weeks before the presidential election. That warrant gave the spooks carte-blanche to rifle through Page’s emails, texts, and phone conversations. Given his connection to the Trump campaign, the warrant also amounted to a free back-door pass to the Trump campaign’s communications as well.

According to the Nunes memo, almost the sole basis for the warrant were allegations gleaned from the infamous Steele Dossier, the 17 memos prepared from June to December 2016 by Christopher Steele, a former British spy, for the opposition research firm Fusion GPS. I say “almost” because the FISA application (which has not been made public) apparently also referenced a story from Yahoo News by Michael Isikoff. But that story, by Isikoff’s own admission, depended entirely on information imparted to him by Christopher Steele. “One bare assertion,” as Hegel put it, “cancelling another”?

So what had Carter Page done to warrant the warrant? For starters, according to the Steele Dossier, he had a secret meeting with Igor Sechin, Vladimir Putin’s bosom buddy, and chairman of Rosneft, the giant Russian integrated oil company that commands annual revenues of some $65 billion. According to the Steele Dossier, Sechin offered Page a brokerage commission on 19 percent interest in Rosneft if the sanctions against Russia (imposed because of their absorption of Crimea in 2014) were lifted should Donald Trump become President.

That, I submit, is ridiculous on its face. It would certainly, by a factor of about a zillion, be the biggest payoff in history. Steele (who admitted that he “was desperate that Donald Trump not get elected and was passionate about him not being president”) gives no source for the allegation beyond an unnamed “Sechin’s associate.” For his part, Carter Page has vigorously denied the allegations and has filed a defamation suit against several entities. Discovery should be fun.

But here’s the thing. A key part of the Democrats’ memo is challenging the assertion that the critical evidence for the FISA warrant was the Steele Dossier, that “salacious and unverified” document (to employ the eloquent phrase of James Comey, the disgraced former Director of the FBI). Here is how the Democrats’ memo deploys its rebuttal. “In subsequent FISA renewals,” the memo says, “DOJ provided additional information obtained through multiple independent sources that corroborated Steele’s reporting.”

Wow. Let’s have it! Whatdya got? Three bullet points—count ’em, three!—the first two of which are entirely blacked out. The third reads: “Page’s [blacked out phrase] in Moscow with [blacked out word or two] senior Russian officials [blacked out line and a half] as well as meetings with Russian officials.”

So in their physical presentation, the two memos are very different. How do they stack up in other ways? The Nunes memo, as I said, had its origin in the alarm Republican lawmakers felt at the spectacle of the coercive (and inquisitive) power of the state deployed against an American citizen to further a rival political campaign. The Democrats’ memo touches briefly on George Papadopoulos, the 30-year-old policy advisor for Trump who was charged last summer with lying to the FBI (that’s a felony unless your name is Clinton).

But the motor of the memo revolves around Carter Page. Did you know that Mr. Page traveled to Russia? Suspscious, no?  It gets worse. He did business in Russia, with Russians! And as if that weren’t bad enough, he delivered a university commencement address in Russia—“an honor,” the Democrats’ memo darkly informs us, “usually reserved for well-known luminaries.” Gosh.

The Democrats’ memo speaks of Carter Page being a “target for recruitment.” On the contrary, he was vetted by a Russian intelligence agent. But of course everyone who is anyone is vetted by Russian intelligence: diplomats, celebrities, prominent businessmen, your Aunt Millie. If the Russians think a mark can help them, they’re there with an offer. But as it happens, the agent who vetted Carter Page concluded that he was an “idiot” not worth bothering with. The Dems’ memo notes that the FBI had been watching Page since 2013. But of course there are many reasons intelligence services might take an interest in people. One reason, which the Dems’ memo neglects, is that person A, who is innocent, might help you get to person B, who is not. The memo does not note that Page actually helped the Bureau build a case against the Russian industrial spy Evgeny Buryakov. Nor does it note that Page has never been charged with a crime. 

The great irony surrounding the “Russia Collusion” soap opera is that, after a white-hot investigation of nearly a year, the only collusion to have emerged implicates the Clinton campaign, not Trump’s. As I noted elsewhere, it was the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee who secretly paid for the Steele dossier—facts that, pace assertions to the contrary by the Democrats, were concealed from the FISA Court when the applications were made.

And where did Mr. Steele get his lurid stories? Why, from a congeries of unnamed Russian “sources close to the Kremlin.” Nota bene: a piece of opposition research, paid for by the Clinton campaign and the DNC, was fed to the FBI, which used it to obtain secret court warrants to spy on people inside the Trump camp. In other words, the Clinton campaign indirectly colluded with Russian sources, first to affect the election and then, when that didn’t work, to undermine the incoming administration.

That’s the real story behind these memo wars. And stay tuned. Devin Nunes has alerted us to the advent soon of Phase Two, regarding the State Department’s role in this melodrama, and even Phase Three, which will bring it into the inner corridors of the Obama administration.

The Democrats screamed bloody murder when they learned that Nunes planned to publish a summary of his investigation’s findings. They said they were all about protecting the integrity of our wonderful intelligence services; they were concerned that “sources and methods” not be revealed. But all that was clearly a blind. What they feared was the exhibition of the truth about the biggest American political scandal in living memory.

There’s a lot we still do not know. But cast your mind back over the last several months: think of the stunning revelations that have appeared one by one: about James “Higher Loyalty” Comey leaking classified information and lying to the FBI; about Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, the amorous anti-Trump FBI agents; about Fusion GPS (co-founded by Glenn Simpson, a former Wall Street Journal reporter) which was conducting anti-Trump research. Later we learned that Fusion GPS had “conducted opposition research” (that’s shop-talk for “conducting a smear campaign to destroy someone”) against Sergei Magnitsky, the Russian lawyer who, as The Washington Post reported, “was tortured and killed in a Russian prison in 2009 after uncovering a $230 million tax theft by 23 Kremlin-linked companies and individuals close to President Vladimir Putin.” We learned about Bruce Ohr, once upon a time Associate Deputy Attorney General (i.e., number 4 in the DOJ), who had undisclosed meetings with Christopher Steele and Glenn Simpson. Then we learned that Bruce Ohr’s wife, Nellie, was employed at Fusion GPS “to assist in the cultivation of opposition research on Trump.” And on it goes.

The Democrats’ memo makes some effort to counter, neutralize, or distract from these realities. But Andy McCarthy—who has just posted at must-read anatomy of the Dems’ memo—is right: “The Schiff Memo Harms Democrats More Than It Helps Them.” As I say, there’s a lot we don’t know. But the Nunes memo presented a number of disturbing revelations. The Dems, on the other hand, are stuck in the “dogmatism of mere assertion.” Their performance in this memo is partly comic, but mostly it’s contemptible, dishonest, and alarming. Fortunately, early returns suggest that the people—outside the precincts of CNN, The New York Times, and other infected redoubts—understand the truth. It bodes well for the republic. For the Democrats, not so much.

[Updated 2/26]

Content created by the Center for American Greatness, Inc. is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a significant audience. For licensing opportunities for our original content, please contact licensing@centerforamericangreatness.com.

About Roger Kimball

Roger Kimball is editor and publisher of The New Criterion and the president and publisher of Encounter Books. He is the author and editor of many books, including The Fortunes of Permanence: Culture and Anarchy in an Age of Amnesia (St. Augustine's Press), The Rape of the Masters (Encounter), Lives of the Mind: The Use and Abuse of Intelligence from Hegel to Wodehouse (Ivan R. Dee), and Art's Prospect: The Challenge of Tradition in an Age of Celebrity (Ivan R. Dee).

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162 responses to “The Schiff Obstruction

  • This entire investigation is a total sham. We get it: Mueller’s goal is to find something that will give Democrats ammunition to impeach Pres. Trump. Comey, just like Hillary, will not be charged with anything, not because he lied, not for obstructing justice in Hillary’s investigation, not for withholding evidence to obtain a FISA Court warrant, otherwise he would be hiding somewhere instead of tweeting, writing books, teaching at a University; he is laughing all the way to the bank while further enriching Mueller and his associates as they benefit handsomely from the tax payers.

    • Mueller just has to drag out his “investigation” until after the mid-term elections sweep out the Republicans and sweep in the Democrats so they can impeach Trump and cover up this whole mess. The only hope for saving the Republic is for Republicans and Independents to show up in force and vote so that doesn’t happen.


      • Impeach TRiUMPh because taxes are lower!!!!

        Impeach TRiUMPh because unemployment is lower!!!!

        Impeach TRiUMPh because we have more money in our pockets!!!!

        Impeach TRiUMPh because he is MAGA!!!!

        TRiUMPh MUST BE IMPEACHED!!!!!

      • They might impeach, but they’ll never get the 2/3 vote in the Senate, and in the meantime more and more will come to light. The Democrats may rue the day they started down this path.

      • I guess I was asleep or absent in Civics ll the day the teacher covered impeaching a sitting duly elected President because he’s just too icky………. Or maybe it wasn’t covered since that is a basic tenet of the left that came into being about 15 months ago.

      • I took constitutional law in undergrad school during Watergate. Guess what we studied?

    • It’s isn’t about impeachment, because even if they could get a two-thirds vote required for conviction in the Senate, it would “solve the problem” and remove the Democrat’s own ammunition. The purpose of this meandering dragnet of an investigation is to leave the Trump Presidency under a permanent cloud of never-ending allegations in effort to delegitimize him and undermine GOP rule.

  • What is with you people? Are you able to post anything without a huge glaring error right in the middle of your argument?

    What this article says: “According to the Steele Dossier, Sechin
    offered Page a 19 percent interest in Rosneft if the sanctions against
    Russia (imposed because of their absorption of Crimea in 2014) were
    lifted should Donald Trump become President”. It then says that figure is so huge it blows up the entire credibility of the dossier.

    But the author, misread the text of the ACTUAL Dossier: “Sechin’s associate said that the Rosneft president was so keen to lift
    personal and corporate western sanctions imposed on the company, that he
    offered Page and his associates the brokerage of up to a 19 per cent
    (privatised) stake in Rosneft,”

    See the word “brokerage”? That means they offered Page the *commission* on the sale. That’s normally 3%.
    Rosnoft sold 19.5% in 2017 for €10.2B. So doing the math, the brokerage offered to Page would have been €250M.
    Yes, that’s a large number — but it’s peanuts compared to the benefit of removing the sanctions.

    • It then says that figure is so huge it blows up the entire credibility of the dossier.

      That wasn’t said.

      What’s that about accuracy, again?

      The point about your figure or the author’s probably mistake figure is that it’s simply claimed.

      • Here’s the quote about the 19% offer: “That, I submit, is ridiculous on its
        face. It would certainly, by a factor of about a zillion, be the biggest
        payoff in history.”

        Read that quote: What’s it mean to you? The dossier’s claim is “ridiculous on its face”. He’s trying to dismiss the dossier’s claim, and the dossier itself.

        But I’m all ears: tell me what he meant instead.

      • First of all, having reread the dossier last night, it’s confusing in the dossier. Because Steele says in the Summary: “Substance included offer of large stake in Rosneft in return for lifting sanctions on Russia.” “A large stake in a company” is not a commission. 19% would be a sizable stake. If you look at the object of “offer” it’s a “large stake in ” a company.

        Stupid lib arguments. Just because you have reading issues, doesn’t mean I have to indulge them. It DEFINITELY does not hold up to that it SAYS “that figure is so huge it blows up the entire credibility of the dossier.” Which you said it SAYS. Again, he simply says that on its face it’s ridiculous, but he goes right past that to point out that it’s only claimed, which echoes his point about “mere assertion”, referring to Hegel in the very first sentence of the article. That it’s mentioned so early in the article is a big clue that it’s a more central theme than whether everything in the dossier is believable.

        The author, who seems to understand argument better than you do, didn’t spike the ball there, as you pretend. He does not put that much weight on it, as you read into it. He says Steele “gives no source for the allegation beyond an unnamed ‘Sechin’s associate.'” And that Page disputes this and has filed a defamation suit.

        But the claim is a mess. Page can’t lift the sanctions, Trump could. And if Trump is a risk not to do it with the history of 5 years of backing, the suggestion that Putin and him were practically buds, that they had video “kompromat” on Trump, how’s a bribe to Carter Page supposed to help that? “Hey, Don, could you remove the sanctions if you get elected? Sechin is going to pay me BUCKS!”

      • Yes, it’s confusing in the dossier. Granted.
        But my argument was with Kimball, who took one interpretation of the confused statements, and dismissed it as ridiculous.
        And if my “reading issues” are a problem, why did Kimball revise the article to now include the word “brokerage”? He did this after I posted my comment.
        “[Updated 2/26]”

        To your other arguments:
        + Kimball doesn’t really “spike the ball” anywhere. One of the few specific places he tried to undermine the veracity of the dossier was in the 19% claim (which made it easier to refute)
        + Yes, only Trump could remove the sanctions. But in July, Page was still attached to the campaign, so ostensibly had influence on the campaign. SOMETHING happened, because 10 days later the Russian sanction planks were removed from the GOP platform (that’s exactly when I grew suspicious). Plus, who said the money had to stop at Page? As far as they were concerned, they were giving Page €300M: If he had to pass some of it around to remove the sanctions, they didn’t care. And it didn’t necessarily need to go to Trump. There were plenty of infuential hands in need of money (Manafort, Flynn, for example).

      • And if my “reading issues” are a problem, why did Kimball revise the article to now include the word “brokerage”? He did this after I posted my comment.

        My criticism was your reading of Kimball’s argument; In my first post to you, I said that Kimball’s reading is probably a mistake. And I only added to that that Steele’s “summary” makes it more confusing–which you granted.

        My speculation on why Kimball changed it is because he realized he had misread the detail of the conflicting summary and prefers to correct his errors.

        As for the rest of what you say here, it’s interesting. But, nonetheless, if Trump needed the Russian help, why wouldn’t that be enough, why wouldn’t the supposed kompromat be enough–with the need for Russian help?

        Do you realize that Page’s former dealings with the FBI was when he turned in the two agents who were trying to recruit him? He doesn’t have a record of selling out America to Russians, but Russians to America. That’s one thing that the Schiff memo totally distorts.

    • But a huge piece of it was sold and Carter Page got nothing. Zip. Nor were these sanctions removed.

      So, the claims that Page was offered a huge brokerage commission certainly seem suspect. Either there was no offer or Page accepted an offer that he never had a chance of fulfilling.

      Either way, the Steele report is complete bullshit.

      • “Either there was no offer or Page accepted an
        offer that he never had a chance of fulfilling.”
        Yes. Exactly. You lay out a perfectly plausible claim: Carter Page oversold himself, leading the Russians to believe his influence with the campaign was more than it was. You’ve seen Page — perfectly plausible — the guy’s a clown.

        And that’s ALL the dossier claimed: they made the offer.
        The author of this article made the claim that 19% slice – equivalent to €10B – was preposterously large, so that dossier claim could be dismissed out of hand. But that was based on a faulty reading of the dossier.

        You guys keep saying the dossier is bullshit, but never show your work.
        This author tried and failed.

      • The Steele Dossier is a series of claims assembled by Steele. All but the most banal of these claims have not been corroborated (at least publically). I think that’s the basis for statements that claim the contents of the dossier are bovine bowel movements.

      • Again: “not been corroborated” is not equal to “disproven”.
        Then there’s this conundrum: The more you folks make the claim the warrant petition was based mostly/exclusively on the dossier, the more you’re working to prove its veracity.
        Why? Because FISA warrants expire after 90 days, UNLESS they’re producing material consistent with the original warrant. The Page surveillance was extended THREE times (by Republican appointed judges, mind you.) The extensions therefore point to the veracity of the source material; if you guys want to make that the dossier, fine.

      • Actually, in the case of filing for a warrant ‘not corroborated’ is the same as ‘disproven’.

        Corroboration of the Steele Dossier informants may be forthcoming (though I seriously doubt it), but that doesn’t vindicate the application for the warrant when it was originally made and authorized.

        As for ‘working to prove’ the ‘veracity’ of the Steele Dossier, that’s in your imagination.

        As for FISA warrants being renewed, it’s not evidence that the contents of the material presented to the FISC contained corroborated evidence. Your reasoning is circular: The FISA warrants are valid because the FISC issued warrants. That the warrants issued for Carter Page were invalid is obvious from the fact that Carter Page has not been charged with any crime and remains a free man. Since the predicate for the FISA warrants is the commission of a crime involving espionage, the fact that Carter Page remains unindicted for any crime, it appears the warrants were issued in error. Getting to the bottom of why this occurred is part of the various ongoing investigations.

        At this time, the public evidence appears to indicate that the Steele Dossier was the basis for the Title I warrant to surveil Carter Page and anyone who had contact with him. The Steele Dossier has been available to the public for some time and theclaims made by Steele’s informants remain uncorroborated.

      • Pieces of the dossier have been explicitly disproven. So, while there may have been a fantasy offer to Carter Page, in the end this is all unsubstantiated bullshit. ANd that is the evidentiary value of it: bullshit. So, why is this used in a FISA warrant app?

        The DOSSIER IS BULLSHIT. It is unverified, unsubstantiated gossip and made up fantasy that has been proven to be untrue.

        The people who think it is more than that have their heads so far up their asses in Trump Derrangement dentists recommend removing their teeth to protect their vital organs.

    • What’s wrong with you? You are correct in the math, but then go on to present the unproven assertion in the Steele Dossier as it it were fact The math would matter if there were any corroborating evidence to support the claim, but not has has been provided.

      • All of these guys named in the dossier are suing Fusion GPS and Steele in US court for defamation. How many ‘spies’ and ‘criminals’ do you know who subject themselves to public scrutiny and massive attention by pushing the issue in a public forum like civil court? Short answer: none.

      • ” but then go on to present the unproven assertion in the Steele Dossier as it it were fact”
        Where did I do that? Quit making shit up.

      • That is how I interpreted a series of declarative sentences that you wrote. Specifically ‘That means they offered Page the *commission* on the sale.’ Perhaps you meant to say that ‘They claim they offered…’?

    • The Steele dossier is opposition research. Only an idiot debates the ‘finer’ points of opposition research.

  • Adam Schiff: Living proof that certifiable mental instability no longer bars one from a long and lucrative career in Democratic politics.

      • Schiff is nothing but a political hack, desperately trying to obfuscate and deflect from the corruption of the Obama administration.

    • Schiff is a national hero, and Nunes is literally a Trump butt-boy. Stop getting your news from Fox – the network invented for stupid people

      • What a great retort, you must be very smart! I’ll bet that you can recite the entire alphabet and do
        some times table.

      • Your definition of a “hero” isn’t what you think it is.
        Buy yourself a dictionary so you don’t embarrass yourself so much.
        Carry On

      • Another lib obsessed with butts. What’s all that about?

      • Arnold’s only claim to fame for two terms of CA Gov was his reference to Democrats as “girly men”, which they certainly are.

      • Great TROLLING!!! Man, Soros is gonna LOVE you!!! Did you think this up yourself, or did you get it from MoveOn.org?

      • You must be a CA liberal, only someone of that ilk could be so blind to Schiff’s lies and dissembling.

      • Schiff is a disgrace, a partisan hack who obscures the truth.

      • Schiff Head is just trying to protect the criminal left. And we have proof.

    • Well, and Ted Kennedy, Chucky Schumer, Robert “Grand Kleagle” Byrd, LBJ, Pelosi, Harry Reid, Dick Durbin, etc. Of course, the most unconscionable Democrat has been John McCain (see what I did there?). Romney is a close second.

  • Schiff is an unconscionable liar, which makes him a democrat darling.

    It’s part of his job description.

  • The Schiff memo is basically the Democraps sticking their fingers in their ears and yelling Na! Na! Nah!

  • Lying, hypocrisy, thuggery and cowardice: all the qualifications of a Democrat.

    • Stupidity and fascist thuggery – All the hallmarks of modern Trump Republicans. And “Cowardice!” How does that track with Cadet Bone Spur, a proven coward!

      • Not everyone has the distinction of having survived both sniper fire in Bosnia and the destruction of WTC. Perhaps y’all should be grooming little Chelsea for POTUS — seeings how Ma Hillary is a two time loser, Lizzie Warren is a blonde haired blue eyed “Native American” and Bernie Sanders has gone back to arguing that he’s not a Democrat and his wife did nothing wrong regarding that FBI “matter”.

        Yup, looks like Chelsea is the closest you can come to fielding a combat veteran. Just in case that’s important to you.

  • So is Schiff a willing accomplice or just a blind fool who refuses to believe the worst of his party?

      • Even worse he is a lawyer and that isn’t something to be proud of because lawyers believe, they can manipulate laws.

      • Let’s see. Schiff has a BA in Poly Sci from Standford and a JD from Harvard. He is a former Asst. U.S. Attorney.
        Nunes on the other hand has a degree in agriculture from the College of the Sequoias.
        Gosh, who do I think has more credibility on legal matters?

      • What are the chances this looser was a BSA Eagle Scout??

  • Mr. Kimball leaves out an important detail regarding the FISA warrants. The warrants were gained under Title I of FISA. Title I warrants are based upon the claim that the target is a spy for a foreign power. Title I grants the power to review all activities and records of activities (email, phone records, etc) past and present of the target, but also to do the same to everyone who comes into contact with the target, or who at one time came in contact with the target. The FISA Title I warrant was a ‘fishing expedition’ that, so far, has yielded nothing on the President.

    • Truly silly post. The whole assertion is that whatever warrant was issued it was issued with the FBI hiding info. Who cares what type it was or who it covered, it was obtained illegally.

      Try harder.

      • My post was pointing out what I felt was a missed point in Mr. Kimball’s article. If you don’t feel it’s important, that’s your prerogative, but it doesn’t make the post ‘silly’. Even Representative Nunes felt it was important as he highlighted this fact in his ‘memo’.

      • It isn’t as simple as you present in your comment on the “important detail” Mr. Kimball did not mention.

        Under FISA law, because Carter Page is an American citizen, FISA warrant applications also require evidence not only that he was acting as an agent for the Russians, but that his activities were also likely to be criminal under U.S. federal law. Suspecting someone is a spy for a foreign power is not an automatic conviction of criminal activity — some evidence of possible criminal actions must be provided in the warrant application.

        As Andrew McCarthy noted in his excellent article on the Schiff Memo – (See FISA, Section 1801(b)(2)(A) through (E), Title 50, U.S. Code.)

      • FISA is not a criminal court. It is a counter-intelligence court. As Andrew McCarthy has pointed out, the DOJ/FBI could have gone through the regular federal courts. However, doing so would have required appearing before a regular judge who, hopefully, would have followed the regular rules of evidence governing warrants.

        Counter-intelligence warrants are not criminal warrants. No one can be prosecuted if the FISA court. If it is determined that the target (or a co-surveilled associate) has broken a law governing intelligence operations in the US, the evidence then goes to the regular courts.

        If a counter-intelligence operation uncovers non-intelligence related criminal activity the evidence gathered under the FISA warrant cannot be used. It’s simply not germane to the counter-intelligence purpose of the original warrant.

        It’s true that the warrant applicants are supposed to provide ‘evidence’ of illegal intelligence activity as a predicate to a request for any FISA warrant. The issue currently under investigation by Nunes et al is whether the evidence provided was, in fact, sufficient to justify a FISA warrant under the normal rules of evidence governing such requests.

        At this point, all available evidence suggests that the normal process for presenting and supporting claims for a warrant to surveil an American citizen were not followed.

        As for Andrew McCarthy’s commentary on the Schiff Memo, the title of the article is ‘The Schiff Memo Harms Democrats More Than It Helps Them’ (https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/02/schiff-memo-russia-investigation-harms-democrats-more-than-helps-them/)

      • I made no distinction between a criminal case or a counter-intelligence case.
        In granting the warrant in the first place, the FISA Judge has to take into account whether the subject is a U.S. Citizen or not. If the subject IS an U.S. citizen, regardless of the purpose of the warrant (counter-intelligence or criminal), there is a higher standard to be met in the FISA regulations on what must be demonstrated in the warrant as probable cause for it.
        These are rules built into the law which created the FISA Court and allows it to operate. Your arguments on the purpose of the warrant as a counter-intelligence tool versus a criminal tool are not germane to the observations I made.

      • I didn’t say you made a distinction between a (standard) criminal warrant and a counter-intelligence warrant. I there is a difference and those differences matter.

        In a standard criminal warrant, you are not authorized to automatically extend your warrant to permit surveillance to all of the target’s contacts, such as is the case with Title I FISA warrants.

        Knowing that the warrant sought by the FBI/DOJ was a Title I warrant is key to understanding possible motives for requesting a Title I FISA warrant on Carter Page: It granted broad powers to surveil anyone who had contact with Page.

        It’s also important to understand that by asking for a Title I warrant, the FBI/DOJ was declaring that they had probable cause that Carter Page was engaged in ‘intelligence activities’ that violated US Federal statutes. Carter Page remains a free man, unindicted of any acts of espionage. So, whatever ‘probable cause’ was provided in the warrant wasn’t particularly ‘probable’ or much of a ’cause’ either.

        It’s also important — as, once again, Andrew McCarthy has pointed out — that a warrant is issued when other means of acquiring the needed information from the targeted individual have been tried and failed. Carter Page had voluntarily worked with the FBI in the past to assist in the indictment and conviction of Russian assets who attempted to recruit him. So far as can be determined no effort was made by the FBI to interview Mr. Page regarding the allegations in the Steele Dossier. Since Page had cooperated in the past with FBI enquiries, why not at least try to get the information the FBI was seeking without a Title I warrant?

        I think you can guess my answer to that (rhetorical) question.

      • Ok. Appears we’re both on the same page on these events – regardless of the motives or (legal) reasoning we’re impugning to the participants :0)
        Bottom-line, the purveyors of this fisa warrant on carter page engaged in an abuse of the fisa court rules – whatever their intent.
        I personally want to see indictments on the individuals involved, but more importantly, I want to see adjustments in how this Court conducts itself – to prevent this sort of thing from EVER happening again.

      • How could this information not be germane. If Title I grants the rights as Wimpy suggests, if Carter Page then emails Donald Trump, the Feds automatically have the right bug Mr. Trump. Its a license to listen in on many people.

    • Title 1 also says that the factual evidence offered to the court is under oath of the signatory. Ergo, Comey et al have purjured themselves.

      Carter was a spy- FOR the FBI, which helped them net Russians, as per Kimbell article.

      • What exactly was claimed or offered in the ex parte representation before the FISC is still in question. This is why Nunes has requested the FISC copies of the request for warrant. He doesn’t (for good reason) trust the FBI/DOJ copy which, I believe, he has already seen. There was enough there to make him pursue the issue, but he wants to be certain of the facts before referring anyone for charges (as Grassley has already done with Steele).

      • Dude, Nunes has to keep diverting attention from Trump and the Russians. He is setting himself up for obstruction charges in the process.

      • Typical, wholly unsupported assertion by a low-info leftie. And you cannot provide any facts or analysis that would support your absurd and totally unjustified partisan attack on Nunes, who has done nothing that is in any way improper in exposing the corruption of the Obama administration and the outrageous attacks on the Constitution at the hand hands of your Dem politicians. If you care to respond with what you consider to be some sort of factual support for your inane comment, I will be happy to tell you specificalli why your conclusions are pure nonsense, Dude.

      • Here are Nunes’ lies in the unmasking affair discussed. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/politics/wp/2018/02/01/one-year-ago-the-same-pattern-nunes-citing-classified-information-to-defend-trump/?utm_term=.b933a20917ac
        Then, Nunes tried to claim Comey testifed that Flynn was innocent. Conveniently, Nunes would not release the transcript.
        Now, Nunes has released his unsupported memo which is squarely contradicted by the facts in the Schiff memo.
        Three strikes and he’s out.
        For your further edification (if you will deign to read), here’s a detailed timeline of but some of Nunes’ transgressions and shenanigans. https://lawfareblog.com/timeline-house-intelligence-committee-chairman-all-nunes-thats-fit-print
        As I said somewhere, he’s trying to obstruct justice. It’s still a crime even if he’s not successful.

      • Neither of the articles your cite are news but rather opinion. To the extent that they provide any facts at all, they are embedded in an existing narrative frame. Nunes is not ‘obstructing justice’ if he is not permitted to provide evidence to which he is privy though he is permitted to present his opinions based upon the evidence he is aware of. What you seem to think is ‘obstruction’ is simply an unwillingness to leak classified information.

      • No, I think both articles are pretty straight forward timelines (did you read them?), particularly the Lawfare piece which even cites a number of Nunes discussions on Fox News (one of your approved sources, I assume?). I realize it’s de rigeur for the right to question sources without addressing their substance, but can’t you even read the material with an open mind? Nunes is obstructing justice by making false statments, holding up his committee’s work, diverting as sadly as he can attention from the Mueller investigation. So it’s perfectly OK for Nunes to leak classified information with the White House’s blessing, but otherwise he should not ask the White House to clear other information/documents that are harmful to Trump?

      • As I said, the articles are opinion pieces, not investigative journalism.

        If the President gives his blessing to declassify information, it’s not a ‘leak’. Moreover, it’s clear that all of the information released in the Nunes memo were subject to vetting by DOJ/FBI.

        Please indicate exactly what false statement(s )you believe that Nunes has presented.

      • The Nunes memo says, “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.”
        That’s a lie. Read the Schiff memo.
        The Nunes memo says that the FBI relied on the Yahoo News article which was based on Steele’s dossier and nothing else. That’s a lie. https://www.washingtonpost….
        The Nunes memo tries to impugn Steele as a source but conveniently overlooks his past service to the FBI. It ignores the fact that law enforcement frequently relies on confidential informants who have criminal records.
        The entire attempt to smear Steele is a diversion from the fact that the FBI/DoJ had other sources and had followed Page previously.
        If Gowdy read the original warrant applications, why didn’t he write the memo instead of Nunes? If Nunes was going to write the memo, why didn’t he read the original applications? Because he didn’t want to be burdened by the truth in writing his false, one-sided takedown.
        The fact remains that four different judges, all appointed by Republican presidents approved four different warrants.

      • Repeating Democratic party-line talking points is not an argument.

        Calling something a ‘lie’ does not make it so. Cite the evidence (not opinion) that supports your claim regarding DOJ/FBI officials awareness of the ‘political origins’ of the Steele Dossier. The Schiff Memo contains no evidence that refutes the Nunes Memo claim.

        I read the Nunes memo and it indicates that a Yahoo news article quoting Steele was used ‘extensively’ as corroboration for the Steele Dossier. The Nunes Memo indicates the Steele dossier ‘formed an essential part’ of the FISA application. So far, other sources for the application have been presented to the public, which, one would have thought, would have been the purpose of the Schiff Memo.

        Steele’s prior service to the FBI is irrelevant. Steele’s (now tarnished) reputation with the FBI does not corroborate the claims of his informant’s hearsay testimony.

        As for the FBI ‘following’ Carter Page, you seem to conveniently ignore the fact that Page cooperated with the FBI to assist in the apprehension (and eventual conviction) of a Russian who attempted to recruit him for espionage.

        With regard to the judge or judges who approved and renewed the Page FISA Title I warrant, I am not aware of any evidence of the number of judges involved. All that exists in the public space are statements by one or more anonymous sources. Since we do not know with certainty who the judges were, we cannot know whether they were appointed by Republican administrations or not. But even if they were it’s not relevant to the content of the FISA warrant application.

      • Essentially, you are deceiving yourself or lying.
        The fact that a point is Democratic doesn’t make it false. The fact that it is a talking point doesn’t either. If it’s true, it’s true.
        Nunes has lied.
        As Schiff points out in his memo “Christopher Steele’s raw intelligence did not inform the FBI’s decision to initiate its counterintelligence investigation in late July 2016. In fact, the FBI’s closely-held investigative team only received Steele’s reporting in mid-September–more than seven weeks later. The FBI…investigation into links between the Russian government and the Trump campaign has been based on troubling law enforcement and intelligence information unrelated to the ‘dossier.'”
        So, you and Nunes are lying about this “essential part.” Calling something a lie makes it a lie when the facts show it is a lie.
        Schiff says, “DOJ cited multiple sources to support the case for surveilling Page–but only made narrow use of information from Steele’s sources about surveilling Page’s specific activities in 2016…”
        As for Steele, Schiff advises that the FBI viewed Steele as reliable based on his prior relationship with the FBI; the fact of and reason for his termination as a source; and the assigned political motivation of those who hired him.
        At pages 2 and 3 of the Schiff memo, the corroborating evidence is cited (with redactions). By mid-September 2016, “the FBI had already opened sub-inquiries into [redacted] individuals linked to the
        Trump campaign: [lengthy redaction] and … Page.”
        As for the FISA warrants, the Schiff memo at page 3 specifically advises that the four warrants were approved by four different judges approved by Republicans. So, again, you lie. This is a fact. Given the Nunes and Trump and DoJ/FBI delays in relaeasing the memo, if there was something secret there , it would have been redacted. It wasn’t.
        So, what do we see? We see you and Nunes lying. We see evidence and redactions of evidence that might provide more evidence. We see that repeating alt-right party-line talking points as you do repeatedly is not an argument, or at best a lying argument. You sir are a perfect match for your POTUS.

      • Let me just take one line from this Lawfare blog that indicates the low level of reliability of the your citation: ‘Almost four weeks ago, based on my experience with the FISA program and those who administer it, I expressed confidence that the government “provided the court with enough information to meaningfully assess Steele’s credibility’.

        Steele’s credibility is irrelevant to FISA warrant as Steele was not a witness to the events indicated in the Steele Dossier. The only thing that Steele could testify to was whether he faithfully transmitted the collection of hearsay testimonies in the Steele Dossier.

        This has turned into a case of duelling sources. I think your are junk and vice versa. Time will tell which one of us is being mislead.

      • I’d say a more telling part of the post is this: “As someone who has read and approved many FISA applications, and dealt extensively with the FISA Court, I will anticipate and reject a claim that the disclosure was somehow insufficient because it appeared in a footnote; in my experience, the court reads the footnotes. The government’s disclosures enabled the court to take Steele’s information with a grain of salt. They allowed the court to decide, based on all of the information presented, whether there was “probable cause” that Carter Page “knowingly” engaged in “clandestine intelligence activities” for Russia that involve, may involve, or are about to involve “a violation of the criminal statutes of the United States.” It’s disturbing that Page met that legal standard and that there was probable cause to conclude he was a Russian agent.”
        Note the writer’s credentials.
        Also of note is the writer’s explanation of how Nunes et al. are engaged in a Rovian ploy of attacking a source by seeking to undermine its strengths. The FISA warrants were legitimate; the Nunes memo is not. More on his ethics here. https://digbysblog.blogspot.com/2018/03/nunes-i-know-you-are-but-what-am-i-paul.html
        This needs to be viewed against the backdrop of the larger tableau of the Trump administration’s incredible corruption and the GOP’s enabling of that evil. https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2018/3/1/17056562/trump-corruption-midterms
        Further, alongside the corruption, we see unprecedented ineptitude. (There’s a reason longtime Republicans like Steve Schmidt, Nicole Wallace, Charlie Sykes and Ana Navarro cannot tolerate Trump.) Trump can’t seem to pass meaningful legislation other than his tax cut for the rich bill. He has shown some stealth in trying to deprive millions of medical care. But he hasn’t delivered on his wall promise. He can’t do gun control (hell, from day to day we don’t know if he’s for gun control or not). He’s made a total botch of immigration policy. He’s had more people fired or resign from his admin than any other POTUS at this juncture of his presidency. (Can Javanka last much longer?) He’s disgraced us on the world stage. He screwed up on TPP, helping the Chinese. He exited the Paris Climate Accords. He hasn’t done anything about NAFTA other than tweet. He’s supported strongmen at every turn. He’s supposed to be thhe President of the US, not Il Duce.
        Meanwhile, don’t count your chickens on the collusion front. https://digbysblog.blogspot.com/2018/03/robert-mueller-can-walk-and-chew-gum-at.html

      • I did note the author’s credentials, which worries me. He seems to think that the Steele Dossier’s collection of uncorroborated hearsay qualifies as ‘probable cause’.

        As for ‘collusion’, collusion is not a crime unless it rises to the level of conspiracy which requires, at the very least, that a crime be committed.

      • At this point you are nitpicking and spreading inaccuracies. Portions of the Steele documents have been corroborated. http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/jurisprudence/2017/09/a_lot_of_the_steele_dossier_has_since_been_corroborated.html
        As the Schiff memo makes clear, DoJ only narrowly relied on the Steele material. Nunes lied about this. Nunes also said that the Isikoff Yahoo News piece relied soley on Steele, but Isikoff has stated that his reporting relied on other sources as well as Steele (perhaps we’ll have more insight on this when Isikoff’s forthcoming book appears).
        As for collusion, yes, I misspoke, the proper term is conspiracy. We will have to await Mueller’s further moves to see if he can substantiate a conspiracy involving the Trumps. But there are certainly crimes related to the acts of Guccifer and the troll farm and coordination with WikiLeaks in releasing DNC/Podesta material. It will be interesting to see what can be connected to Roger Stone when he crawls out from whatever rock he’s under.
        Meanwhile, former Trump associate Sam Nunberg says he is sure Don Jr. told Don Sr. about the Trump Tower meeting shortly after it occurred.

      • If ‘nitpicking’ is another way of saying ‘sticking to the available evidence’ I stand proudly guilty.

        What inaccuracies are you saying I’m spreading? The Slate article is largely saying that the claims made in the Steele Dossier look like other kinds of claims the author has seen. That is a pretty low standard, if it can be said to be a standard at all.

        Nowhere in this article that is there any corroborating evidence to sustain the claims in the Steele dossier. The author talks about ‘intelligence methodology’ and repeats a bunch of (again) unverified claims and/or innuendo as if they matter to the question of whether the claims made by Steele’s informants are true.

        The issue is not whether the claims sound like ‘intelligence’ reporting or whether they are, in fact, ‘intelligence’ but whether the claims of the informants are verifiable.

        If Schiff claims that the the Steele Dossier was only used ‘narrowly’ the he is saying that Andrew McCabe lied to Congress. Oddly, he hasn’t taken any action to call McCabe into account for this ‘misdeed’. However, there are other interpretations of whether the Schiff Memo in fact vindicates the claim of the FBI/DOJ ‘narrowly’ using the Steele Dossier to obtain the FISA Title I warrant on Carter Page: https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/02/schiff-memo-russia-investigation-harms-democrats-more-than-helps-them/

        As for WikiLeaks and the Russians, they have denied their source was Russian and affirmed that their source was ‘internal’ to the DNC.

        To paraphrase Rodney Dangerfield, ‘Pin your hopes on Mueller, please!.’

        Mueller and his gaggle of Democratic ‘sharks’ have had a year-plus and have very little to show for it other than an indictment of Paul Manafort that has nothing to do with Trump campaign ‘conspiracy’ with ‘Russians’ and a ‘process crime’ plea agreement for Michael Flynn that is currently suspended from further adjudication until the FBI/DOJ responds to the judge’s order for all exculpatory evidence related to the Flynn plea agreement.

        Carter Page is not indicted. So, no ‘crime’ was found in relation to the FISA Title I warrant (or, at least not yet). If it is found that the FBI/DOJ did not properly inform the FISC with regard to probable cause for a warrant, then the DOJ/FBI/FISC was involved in improper surveillance of a US election campaign and a Presidential transition.

        The fact that you don’t see that as a problem, is really your problem, not President Trump’s.

      • The author detailed multiple corroborations which you choose to ignore. “The most obvious occurrence that could not have been known to Orbis in June 2016, but shines bright in retrospect is the fact that Russia undertook a coordinated and massive effort to disrupt the 2016 election to help Donald Trump, as the U.S. intelligence community itself later concluded. Well before any public knowledge of these events, the Orbis report identified multiple elements of the Russian operation including a cyber campaign, leaked documents related to Hillary Clinton, and meetings with Paul Manafort and other Trump affiliates to reportedly discuss the receipt of stolen documents. Steele could not have known that the Russians stole information on Hillary Clinton, or that they were considering means to weaponize them in the U.S. election, all of which turned out to be stunningly accurate.”
        Schiff is not saying McCabe lied; he is saying the quote about the warrant was taken out of context and as presented misrepresents the facts. As for McCabe, I guess we have to await the IG’s report on his various issues.
        If you take WikiLeaks and Russian denials at face value, you are deluding yourself.
        I have to smile when you refer to Mueller having had a year to come up with the goods. Let’s see we had (what?) 7 years of Benghazi investigations that turned out to be a nothingburger. Mueller passes the Benghazi test big time. He’s already gotten pleas and indictments. Gowdy got nada.
        The Flynn situation will sort itself out. Judge Sullivan issues that same exculpatory evidence order in every case. Flynn’s plea will stand.
        Page isn’t indicted yet, but Papadopoulos has already pled.
        Yes, IF it is found that the warrant was not proper (actually 4 warrants), then you have something to talk about. But we are a long way from that and we have not seen the warrant applications. So, you are jumping the gun.
        I will say this. Lately, Schiff has been careful in his use of words regarding the various investigations and what might be found. He now emphasizes the term “collusion” as opposed to “conspiracy.” I think he appreciates the difficulty of proving a conspiracy, but he thinks collusion has been established, and he feels that this collusion is sufficient to constitute a high crime or misdemeanor. It may not be illegal, but it should be sufficient to cause Trump to be reined in.

      • I was kind of waiting for Papadopoulus’ plea agreement to come up.

        Mr. Papadopoulus plead to a ‘process crime’, not espionage. It does nothing to further the ‘Russian collusion’ narrative.

        Schiff is not saying McCabe lied, because the chief strength of Schiff’s case (such as it is) is not making connections between known facts.

        Schiff says that information from the Steele Dossier did not comprise a significant part of the FISA warrant request. McCabe said it did. They cannot both be right.

        As for Orbis’ role in all of this, I don’t find them cited in any either of the ‘dueling memos’. If they substantive evidence, I’m sure they’ve brought to the attention of the proper authorities, and I don’t mean the Lawfare blog.

        Yes, Schiff emphasizes ‘collusion’ instead of conspiracy because it doesn’t mean anything other than ‘communication with’. You and I are ‘colluding’ right now.

        Well see if ‘colluding’ with ‘Russians’ is a ‘high crime or misdemeanor’ sufficient to impeach a President, but, then, the Democrats have tried (by some counts) 5 times to impeach POTUS Trump and failed. Sixth times the charm?

      • So you’re saying Papadopoulos can’t testify about anything other than what he has pled to? Wrong. There’s more there. He was in the room where it happened.
        “Schiff is not saying McCabe lied, because the chief strength of Schiff’s case (such as it is) is not making connections between known facts.” This does not make sense. Enlighten me, please.
        “Schiff says that information from the Steele Dossier did not comprise a significant part of the FISA warrant request. McCabe said it did. They cannot both be right.” Unhuh. Or not, because Schiff says McCabe was quoted out of context. So, more info needed.
        Orbis is Steele’s company as I get it.
        Collusion–yeah, yeah.
        Yes, we may see. I’m sorry but I don’t count any prior efforts to impeach Trump as serious. They weren’t going anywhere given the GOP’s control. Maybe they helped in some fund-raising efforts.
        When the Dems win the wave mid-terms and Pelosi or some other speaker signs on for impeachment I’ll count that as #1.

      • There is no evidence that Papadopoulos has anything to offer Mueller which is what a plea agreement on a ‘process crime’ means. Papadopolous can only testify to what other people told him. That doesn’t verify that what those people told him is true.

        McCabe is in the position to state whether he was quoted out of context or not. He hasn’t.

        As far as impeachment is concerned, it’s a political act. If, indeed, the Democrats muster enough votes then the impeachment will proceed. However, if they do, on the basis of unverified opposition research like the Steele Dossier, it will open the floodgates for every subsequent President to be impeached for what is, essentially, rumor. That’s more than a ‘slippery slope’ its a teflon-coated slalom.

      • Sorry, but portions of the Steele dossier have been corroborated. I’ve outlined this in prior posts.
        But I completely agree about the floodgates. However, the GOP has already opened the gates with their endless “investigations” of Benghazi, etc. They’ve been asking for it. Will they get it?

      • Sorry, but you’ve never pointed out even one claim in the Steele Dossier that was corroborated and relevant to its use to acquire a Title I FISA warrant on Carter Page. I admit that some parts of some claims in the Steele Warrant are true, they’re just not relevant to acquiring a warrant.

        For example, the Steele Dossier claims that Carter Page went to Russia. This is both true and freely admitted by Mr. Page. What is not corroborated by the hearsay testimony contained in the Steele Dossier is that he knowingly met with Russian agents or was recruited by them to engage in espionage against the USA. If the Steele Dossier was the primary documentation used to acquire a Title I warrant, then the warrant should never have been issued in the first place.

      • You don’t know what you don’t know. And you haven’t seen the warrant applications, so what’s the point of acting like you know what is in them? Nunes tried to imply that the dossier was the only thing the court relied on, but no credible source agrees with that. Since you don’t sit on the FISA Court, I m not concerned about your uninformed rulings.

      • First all, it’s not my claim that the FISA Title I warrant on Carter Page was primarily based upon the Steele Dossier, it’s Andrew McCabe’s according to the Nunes Memo.

        Specifically, ‘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.’

        So, your choice is obvious: The Nunes Memo misrepresents McCabe’s statement before the Committee in that McCabe did not indicate such to the committee and did not indicate anything like that to the committee.

        Since McCabe’s statement was made in a closed session, the only part that has been made available to the public is that which is in the Nunes Memo.

        Notably, the Schiff Memo does not deny that McCabe made such a statement before the Committee.

      • I’m just not inclined to call people names on the basis of opinions.

        So far as I can tell, you haven’t refuted a single positive claim that I have made. I do my best to stick to known, publicly-available evidence. I’m not saying this is the complete record, because there is much material that has not been publicly released (and may never be).

        The evidence> that is available appears to support the following:

        (a) Carter Page was surveilled under a Title I FISA warrant.
        (b) A Title I FISA warrant is based upon a claim of knowing espionage against the USA.
        (c) The Steele Dossier has been available to the public for some time and none of the claims relevant to a Title I warrant have received outside corroboration.
        (d) According to the closed-session testimony of Andrew McCabe, the Steele Dossier was the primary source of evidence used in support of the Page warrant.

        Of these, the only contestable claim is (d) and even the Schiff Memo does not deny that McCabe made this claim in the closed session.

        You can hold out hope that — sometime in the future — some new evidence will come forward that helps you make your case. But, in the meantime, the available evidence does not.

        The available evidence supports the hypothesis that the Carter Page warrant was improper. The civil rights of Mr. Page and everyone who came into contact with him while the warrant was active were violated. You may think that’s okay if the people are those you don’t like, but I do not.

      • With respect, saying it’s so doesn’t make it so.
        Shearer’s reporting appears to corroborate Steele. Independently, as I have detailed subsequent events have corroborated some of Steele’s material (Russia did meddle in our election).
        It’s heartening that you are concerned about the sanctity of Page’s constitutional rights and those of his contacts.
        But step back and look at the existential crisis Trump has placed our government in with his ongoing lies and diversions and his refusal to criticize much less sanction Russia. What about the rights of women and minorities and immigrants that Trump tramples on a weekly basis?
        Available evidence means nothing if there’s not much that is available. But what is available supports the 4 FISA warrants issued by four different judges appointed by GOP presidents.
        Schiff is a former Assistant US Attorney who has read the warrant applications. He says they are valid. Schiff says the warrants were only narrowly based on Steele’s work and that other material supported the warrants.
        Nunes is not an attorney, has not reviewed the applications, leaked and lied about Sen. Warner’s efforts to meet with Steele, and thinks there is something wrong with the applications. What? I’m sorry but I cannot accept the word of a known liar claiming that McCabe said the warrants were based soley on Steele’s work. (Schiff disputes this reading of McCabe’s testimony.) Nunes can’t truthfully say that because he hasn’t read the applications. He is simply running interference for Trump. He and Trump could declassify portions of the applications if they wanted to. Have they? Absolutely not.
        Instead we have Trump’s ongoing diversions, lies, self-serving statements, refusal to face the press, etc. Oh yeah, and what about that meeting he wanted to have with Mueller? Trump passes the duck test: he looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck. In short, he’s a duck. That’s really the evidence you need to evaluate.

      • Schiff disputes the ‘reading’ of McCabe’s testimony is not a denial of what McCabe said.

        As for the Shearer/Steele coincidences, they’re irrelevant because the underlying hearsay testimony remains uncorroborated in both cases. It also appears that Steele, not Shearer’s material was primary basis for the Page warrant.

        As for Nunes reading the FISA warrants, it isn’t relevant. Trey Gowdy was the person who read the FISA warrant and collaborated with Nunes on the Memo and its contents.

        As for your aspersions on POTUS Trump and Representative Nunes, they’re not relevant. Only evidence is relevant. Innuendo and invective are not evidence.

        POTUS Trump and Nunes have worked through the existing process regarding the release of classified material to assure that intelligence methods were not revealed. The process includes input from FBI/DOJ. The final decision rests with POTUS, but he has respected the process.

      • You’re fooling yourself and/or rationalizing your Trump vote. There’s corroboration.
        “Steele’s dossier was only part of what the fisa warrant rested on. According to the Democrats’ Intelligence Committee report, the Justice Department obtained information “that corroborated Steele’s reporting” through “multiple independent sources.””
        Much more here. https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/03/12/christopher-steele-the-man-behind-the-trump-dossier?mbid=nl_Daily%20030518&CNDID=19689432&spMailingID=13056855&spUserID=MTMzMTc5NzEzNjU0S0&spJobID=1360471718&spReportId=MTM2MDQ3MTcxOAS2

      • I don’t have to ‘rationalize’ my Trump vote. I’m happy with POTUS Trump.

        The New Yorker is long on Democrat talking points but short on corroborating evidence for the Steele Dossier…again.

        Unnamed, unverified ‘sources’ not matter how many there are don’t impress me.

      • What evidence do you have that contradicts the Steele dossier? Well, uh, there’s the thing about Cohen meeting someone in Prague. And?
        What evidence do you have that supports Nunes? There isn’t any.
        On the evidence, you lose.
        Meanwhile the GOP members of the HIC continue to leak. https://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/house-intel-leak-testimony-to-michael-cohen
        And if you want more evidence, be careful what you wish for. https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2018/3/6/17083720/trump-russia-news-nastya-rybka
        Lastly, how could any thinking person be happy with Trump? Certainly, Gary Cohn isn’t.
        As for the Mayer piece, I find these paragraphs far more convincing than your hear no evidence, see no evidence, speak no evidence denials.
        “It’s too early to make a final judgment about how much of Steele’s dossier will be proved wrong, but a number of Steele’s major claims have been backed up by subsequent disclosures. His allegation that the Kremlin favored Trump in 2016 and was offering his campaign dirt on Hillary has been borne out. So has his claim that the Kremlin and WikiLeaks were working together to release the D.N.C.’s e-mails. Key elements of Steele’s memos on Carter Page have held up, too, including the claim that Page had secret meetings in Moscow with Rosneft and Kremlin officials. Steele may have named the wrong oil-company official, but, according to recent congressional disclosures, he was correct that a top Rosneft executive talked to Page about a payoff. According to the Democrats’ report, when Page was asked if a Rosneft executive had offered him a “potential sale of a significant percentage of Rosneft,” Page said, “He may have briefly mentioned it.”
        “And, just as the Kremlin allegedly feared, damaging financial details have surfaced about Manafort’s dealings with Ukraine officials. Further, his suggestion that Trump had “agreed to sideline Russian intervention in Ukraine as a campaign issue” seems to have been confirmed by the pro-Russia changes that Trump associates made to the Republican platform. Special Counsel Mueller’s various indictments of Manafort have also strengthened aspects of the dossier.
        Indeed, it’s getting harder every day to claim that Steele was simply spreading lies, now that three former Trump campaign officials—Flynn, Papadopoulos, and Rick Gates, who served as deputy campaign chairman—have all pleaded guilty to criminal charges, and appear to be coöperating with the investigation. And, of course, Mueller has indicted thirteen Russian nationals for waging the kind of digital warfare that Steele had warned about.
        “On January 9th, Trump’s personal attorney, Michael Cohen, filed a hundred-million-dollar defamation lawsuit against Fusion. He also sued BuzzFeed. Cohen tweeted, “Enough is enough of the #fake #RussianDossier.” Steele mentioned Cohen several times in the dossier, and claimed that Cohen met with Russian operatives in Prague, in the late summer of 2016, to pay them off and cover up the Russian hacking operation. Cohen denies that he’s ever set foot in Prague, and has produced his passport to prove it. A congressional official has told Politico, however, that an inquiry into the allegation is “still active.” And, since the dossier was published, several examples have surfaced of Cohen making secretive payments to cover up other potentially damaging stories. Cohen recently acknowledged to the Times that he personally paid Stephanie Clifford, a porn star who goes by the name Stormy Daniels, a hundred and thirty thousand dollars; it is widely believed that Trump and Clifford had a secret sexual relationship.”
        If you can’t see it, let me clarify it for you: you and Trump are losing.

      • Why does Cohen even matter? The FISA warrant was for Carter Page?

        In any event, media reports referencing with anonymous sources don’t really impress me much.

        Whenever it’s clear that cannot refute a claim with evidence you try to switch the subject. Which is tiresome, but to be expected I suppose. Invective and ad hominem attacks are the last refuge of someone who does not have the facts on their side.

      • You wanted to talk about evidence. I gave you the evidence I knew about. You responded with your tired mantra of Dem talking points and anonymous sources.
        I asked you for your evidence. You provided nothing.
        I think that if Mueller is allowed to complete his work unimpeded, Trump will be ushered from the stage and his associates will face criminal charges.
        You’ll be left in a corner somewhere with Andrew McCarthy and Jonathan Turley yakking about invalid FISA warrants, Dem talking points and anonymous sources. Is that really where you want to be?

      • Get used to it.
        Nothingburgertoday, nothingburgertomorrow, nothingburgerforever!
        And just to nail the point home, you have provided NO evidence. Cuz you ain’t got none.

      • I neglected to mention that the lawfare blog timeline is nothing more than regurgitations of the false accusations, incorrect assumptions, and lies of Adam Schiff and the msm to discredit Nunes no matter what it takes. Despite the leftist spin, I fail to see anything in that account which indicates any improprieties on the part of Nunes or any validity in the criticisms to which he has been unfairly subjected. These are not uninformed conclusions on my part, since, as a lawyer, I have over 35 years of experience in evaluating conflicting claims.

        Insofar as those “square contradictions” in Schiff’s memo, you might consider what Andrew McCarthy, a former assistant U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, had to say about them:
        https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/02/schiff-memo-russia-investigation-harms-democrats-more-than-helps-them/ Mr. McCarthy was no more impressed than I was with Schiff’s legal and (non)factual arguments.

        Schiff has had losing positions on all these issues regarding the Trump investigations and the frivilous attacks on Nunes, Dude.

      • You have a habit of jumping to conclusions you want to reach. You said you’d state specifically how I was wrong, but you mostly resort to ad hominem statements and argument, not facts. Too bad.
        Your msm criticisms are ironic given the msm’s role in getting Trump elected. Not sure they were the sina qua non, but they helped. As for msm, what is it? Apparently anything you don’t like and wish to dismiss. But weren’t Edward R. Murrow, Walter Cronkite, Huntley & Brinkley msm?
        As for your conclusions, uninformed or otherwise, I will note they mean more when buttressed by facts. As a lawyer I too have over 35 years experience in evaluating conflicting claims, litigating cases, and appealing ones that didn’t turn out right. Now that we’ve established that my dick is as long as yours (and here I’m giving you the benefit of the doubt), let’s see what you’ve got left.
        The Nunes memo says, “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.”
        That’s a lie. Read the Schiff memo.
        The Nunes memo says that the FBI relied on the Yahoo News article which was based on Steele’s dossier and nothing else. That’s a lie. https://www.washingtonpost….
        The Nunes memo tries to impugn Steele as a source but conveniently overlooks his past service to the FBI. It ignores the fact that law enforcement frequently relies on confidential informants who have criminal records.
        The entire attempt to smear Steele is a diversion from the fact that the FBI/DoJ had other sources and had followed Page previously.
        If Gowdy read the original warrant applications, why didn’t he write the memo instead of Nunes? If Nunes was going to write the memo, why didn’t he read the original applications? Because he didn’t want to be burdened by the truth in writing his false, one-sided takedown.
        The fact remains that four different judges, all appointed by Republican presidents approved four different warrants.
        Yes, Andrew McCarthy was an Asst. U.S. Attorney. So was Mr. Schiff. I have endured numerous McCarthy rambling rants on NRO, American Greatness, PJMedia, et al., and I find him to be highly partisan. Just as an example, take his recent criticism of Schiff’s memo. He does a workmanlike effort of going through various points raised by the memo and complaining about missing facts and documents, speculating as to what he thinks the true facts are and catapulting himself to self-declared victory. He basically treats the Schiff memo as if it were a motion for summary judgment and if he can find one or more questions of fact, then the motion/memo must be denied. Andrew, it wasn’t an MSJ. You concede there are facts we don’t know. That does not give you the authority to tell us what the facts you don’t know are. You don’t know. Basic epistemology.
        (Suffice it to say I trust Schiff more than Nunes, McCarthy and Trump– together or separately.)

      • I’ve had it with you and your apparent games. As promised, I came back to provide additional reasons why your assertons that Nunes has lied and is obstructng justice are specious only to find that your prior rant in which you summarily dismissed all of Andrew McCarthy’s compelling reasons why Schiff’s memo lacks merit had disappeared and, more importantly, that my last two lengthy comments, in which I had provided citations which undercut your delusional allegations against Nunes, had been marked as spam. It’s interesting that you are unashamed to argue that someone’s claim that you post nothing but shallow Dem talking points by stating that such is not an argument against the substance of those points, yet you engaged in the same tactic which you had just denounced when you summarily dismissed McCarthy’s points on the basis of your dislike of the author’s political orientation. Or was it that you just weren’t up to the task of responding to arguements which were factually and legally superior to those advanced by you and Mr. Schiff? In general, your comments reveal you to be a smug, glib, uncritical follower of every liberal lie. Some lefties at least have the mental goods with which to con others through their fallacies and outright misrepresentations; you surely don’t.

        The article which you now cite also fails to respond to the more sophisticated analysis of McCarthy as to why a mere mention that those behind the dossier had a political bias and motive does not come close to the full disclosure required under the FISA statutes. If you don’t know it, anyone can find credentialed authorities on every side of virtually any issue. So you will have to excuse those of us who don’t share your leftist cognitive dissonance and just are not impressed by patent nonsense coming out of Mother Jones, Vox, and blogs which provide a forum for Obama Justice Department political appointees with penchants for defending the illegal acts of Obama’s extraordinarily corrupt Justice Department.

        Other than coming back to gloat after time proves you wrong about Nunes and most every thought you post, I really hope that I never have the misfortune of encountering any more of the lightweight comments and silly condescension which only you seem to find impressive.

      • Whoa, big guy. I did not alter, remove or indicate spam on any of your posts. I have noted that at times the software on this site has limited tolerance for repeated back and forths. As an example, my previous post had to be linked to a different post of yours because I could not find your (then) last post. O well. Maybe the mods don’t like windbags like us?
        It’s disappointing to seeing you resort to smearing sources rather than dealing with their substance. Suffice it to say i have a different view of Vox, Mother Jones (Kevin Drum, anyway) and lawfare than you.
        I get that McCarthy has become a demi-god of the center-right and alt-right on legal issues. i also note he voted for Trump and seems hell bent on contorting the facts and law to buttress his support of the man (good advocacy, but not always honest).
        And now, reluctant as I am to do this, let me just ask you to consider where we are. We are faced with the most corrupt (https://corrupt.af/) and one of the most inept administrations in our history. Perhaps if you find some flaw in the FISA warrants (I don’t), you might consider if this is the rare case in which the ends justify the means. This could be a situation where we have to stretch the law a bit to defeat the corruption we face. Just a thought.
        Meanwhile, I am confident that in the coming weeks and months my position will be vindicated as Mueller issues further indictments. Cheers!

  • Mr Kimball needs to seek help and while he’s at it, stop bothering us with his delusions. Rep Schiff is during yeoman’s work to insure that constitutional process is protected from scam artists and Trump butt-boys like Devin Nunes. I never thought I would see the day that sliming the law enforcement community and doing the Russians’ bidding would become a pillar of the “Republican” Party. The faster everyone faces the reality of Trump’s con job and his fealty to the Russians (likely brought on by sexual and financial blackmail) the sooner we can move on from a literal national nightmare.

    • Yes, nothing of content in your post.

      Tell me comrade, is it better that the FISC court judge was lied to and not aware that Hillary paid for the dossier as Nunes asserts, or is it better as Schiff asserts, that the FISC judge knew that Hillary paid for it but issued the warrant anyways?

      • “Comrade” Is that the best you’ve got you pathetic fascist a**hole. I wore the uniform of this country which I imagine is a whole lot more than you can say! Face facts, the Trump administration is hip-deep in Russian collusion and morons like you can’t see it because they get their “news” from Fox, the network specifically designed by Roger Ailes for stupid people to trumpet their nasty prejudices. As PT Barnam said you’ll never go proke underestimating the intelligence of the American people. FISA only reviewed four times on Page, who showed all kinds of probable cause for being a Russian agent; clowns like you are literally too stupid to face facts. As your leader said “I love the under-educated!” Stop trying to debate with your betters!

      • “If you cannot answer another’s arguments do not panic:
        You can always call them names.” –Oscar Wilde

      • FISC wasn’t “lied to”.
        The DoJ informed the Court
        accurately that Steele was hired by politically-motivated U.S. persons
        and entities and that his research appeared intended for use ‘to
        discredit’ Trump’s campaign.
        The Republicans aren’t denying that.

    • Do you feel the same about Hillary and the Clinton Foundation?

      • Aside from “whataboutism”, what about the Clinton Foundation?
        It’s a large charitable foundation, heavily audited, through which no Clinton takes a salary.
        Here’s how you will respond (because you guys are all so predictable):
        1) “It’s not a charity, here’s a report that shows they don’t donate any of their funds to charity” (that’s because they do the programs themselves — a whole bunch of good services in the 3rd world – innoculations, AIDS preventation)
        2) “Then why is it shutting down?” It isn’t; you’re confusing the Clinton Global Initiative with the charity.
        3) “They paid for Chelsea’s wedding” or “Chelsea’s salary is $600,000”
        Wrong, as the audited reports indicated.
        4) “If you believe that, your (sic) a fool!!11!” You will say this because you don’t have proof otherwise.

  • I have said it before, but our only hope to get this solved is when the rank and file Democrats woke and realize that Barry’s and Hillary’s incompetence and criminality does not reflect on them, and they decide to also begin to hold the swamp to higher standards.

  • The issue goes beyond Carter Page who is an Annapolis graduate who has not been charged in 5 years of investigation. Multiple members of the Trump campaign have been illegally spied on. No warrants. No due process. No probable cause. This was an obvious attempt to attack an election they did not like. Congress recently requested the FISA court grant certain members to sit in on a singular session to get a better grasp about the process and were refused. WTF. Is this the Third Reich? This needs to be shut down and shit down immediately.

  • Interesting that Roger chose to quote Hegel…Karl Marx’s teacher and creator of the dialectical process that Marx used to conceive his theories. Also interesting that he chooses to attack an investigation that have produced almost 20 indictments and 4 guilty pleas so far. But I guess running the whipping boy Schiff out in front of the masses at the Fox Coliseum will provide another distraction to keep the Trumpkins from really looking into the criminality of their presidential choice both now and in the past.

  • the subject of the fisa warrant is lost in transition..trey gowdy said today that carter page needs to lawyer up, “the man talks too much”..and the fbi earlier considered him an”idiot..page and papadapolous, manny and moe …if those two are the main subjects in muellers investigation, mueller is hurting

  • Jews do not like Trump, do not trust him and want him gone, and are doing everything they can to have Trump removed by any means necessary. Everything, in every way that is aligned against Trump is being orchestrated by Jews, including the bogus Mueller investigation, everything.

    • Sounds like the standard-issue American conservative. What about it, droolers? Is this one of yours?

      • Whites do have racial enemies and those enemies are blacks and Jews. Ain’t that right Christ killer?

  • If someone offered me pictures of a naked HRC or DJT I would plead with them to not do such a thing… and then try like the devil to get the image out of my head.

    But not Adam Schiff, no, not Adam.

    • “If someone offered me pictures of a naked HRC or DJT” ….I would make a horror movie out of it.

  • Position, negation, abnegation from Hegel.
    Speculation, omissions and lies from Kimball.
    Nunes did not read the underlying warrant applications (the better to permit him to make shit up). Schiff read the material and his memo shows it. There were 4 warrants issued by 4 different judges, all 4 appointed by Republican presidents.
    The redactions are the redactions that someone, not Schiff, imposed.
    Kimball’s piece basically repeats Nunes’ lies and distortions. The truth as presented by Schiff is more complex and damning for Page, et al. https://www.vox.com/world/2018/2/24/17048936/democrat-rebuttal-nunes-schiff-memo

    • Wow, you are full of ‘disinformation’. Nunes did not read the undrlying memo because the CoJ only allowed one member of the HIC to read it- so Nunes asked Gowdy, who had exerience, and his team, to do it. The material of the Nunes memo refers to the original docs, as you would know if you took the time to read it vrs souting stuff fed to you.
      The redactions to the Schiff memo was done by the FBI and DOJ under the signature of Rosenstein and Wray.
      Vox as a news source??? LOL

      • The Nunes memo says, “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.”
        That’s a lie. Read the Schiff memo.
        The Nunes memo says that the FBI relied on the Yahoo News article which was based on Steele’s dossier and nothing else. That’s a lie. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2018/02/02/the-memos-description-of-a-supposedly-key-news-report-is-wrong/?utm_term=.5fc487fa6cb4
        The Nunes memo tries to impugn Steele as a source but conveniently overlooks his past service to the FBI. It ignores the fact that law enforcement frequently relies on confidential informants who have criminal records.
        The entire attempt to smear Steele is a diversion from the fact that the FBI/DoJ had other sources and had followed Page previously.
        If Gowdy read the original warrant applications, why didn’t he write the memo instead of Nunes? If Nunes was going to write the memo, why didn’t he read the original applications? Because he didn’t want to be burdened by the truth in writing his false, one-sided takedown.
        The fact remains that four different judges, all appointed by Republican presidents approved four different warrants.
        You just can’t handle the truth.

  • Thank God, everyone who has read the two memos agree with you 100%! We should just keep saying this to each other, that way it will come true!

  • Schiff is s shifty, pop eyed political animal with the morals of a personal injury attorney. He is both physically repulsive as well as pretentious and smug. What a contrast to Devin Nunez, a tough, honest and courageous legislator. More than any other member of the GOP Congress, with the possible exception of Trey Gowdy, he has taken the fight to the unscrupulous Democrats.

    • “tough, honest and courageous”

      /snerk

      At least learn to spell his name, little drooler!

  • Carter Page turned out to be a more reliable FBI informant than Christopher Steele. His information led to convictions of a Russian spy ring. If Page was a paid FBI informant, that compounds the deception of the FISA applications.
    Hillary arranged a expedited swap of the Ghost Stories spy ring which had nestled into the top echelons of her Senate and first Presidential campaign. Mueller demurred before the spies could be interrogated, turned, or prosecuted.
    Hillary, like Fusion GPS or the Russian lawyer, lobbied against the Magnitsky legislation. Hillary and the Obama adminstration’s law enforcement/intelligence officials have an eight year track record of “blame America” collaboration, appeasement, and pay to play schemes with the Putin’s Russia.
    Hillary’s national security violations had the Democrats in a panic, so the Clinton campaign and Obama’s law enforcement and intelligence officials initiated the Steele dossier collaboration with Russian intelligence operatives to obtain dirt and innuendo on the Trump campaign. It was used to obtain the FISA warrants. Papadopoulos, like many people, believed Hillary’s private server had been hacked by foreign intelligence services or other hackers after her emails, hacked from Blumenthal, started appearing in 2013. He, unlike Steele, produced nothing.
    Schiff is applying more Democratic party lipstick to the piggish conspiracy against the Trump campaign and administration.

  • So new information obtained from the surveillance is required for a renewal. They obviously not only got the new information, that warranted further surveillance, ut they confirmed part of the dossier. So the big point that Kimball uses to discredit this is that the details are redacted? That ‘new information’ obviously exists, was it supposed to be imagined non-existent by its being redacted? More like Kimballs logic is non-existent and grasping at straws.

  • The Trump memo is rasist! There all biggets there going to jale! PERSIST & RESIST!

  • Some people on Trump’s team are criminals, and some are definitely going to prison. Why do you side with the bad guys?

  • Right on the money, Mr. Kimball. Also, your article Is a pleasure to read. Andy McCarthy has earned a presidential medal of freedom and a cash award of a billion.

  • “Dogmatism of mere assertion”: Hegel’s concept was clarified a century later by Josef Goebbels of The Third Reich:
    “Tell a lie often enough and loud enough and everyone will believe it.”

  • It has to be a tough day at the orange monkey-king’s court when Roger Kimball is the best entertainment on offer.

  • Bravo Mr. Kimball,

    Several close reads of both memos, including Andrew McCarthy’s, should have changed the minds of almost everyone except the most rigid ideologues. Your presentation here provides a less cluttered account of the crimes by the FBI. Honest Abe Comey indeed. Thanks again.

    • “except the most ridged ideologues”…

      Are those the ideologues who only eat Ruffles?

  • Democrats would rather destroy the justice system and our democracy, and conveniently blame “the Russians” than have the systemic corruption of the Obama administration see the light of day.

  • So, let me see if I have this straight, right-wingers: You spent all of 2015-16 waiting for Hillary Clinton to be indicted. You gorged yourself on right-wing blogs (like this one) detailing her “crimes.” You just KNEW that the FBI was about to validate all of the propaganda you’d ingested and indict her. But then… nothing happened.

    Well, it couldn’t POSSIBLY have been that you were feasting on tabloid media hogwash; it HAD to be some type of conspiracy, right? But now that Trump was president, Hillary would surely be prosecuted. But then… nothing happened.

    Well, that just showed that James Comey HAD to be in on the conspiracy too, right? As soon as Trump fired Comey and appointed his own FBI director, then SURELY all of the “news” you’d been reading about Hillary’s crimes would be proven. But then… nothing happened. Chris Wray wouldn’t pursue a case against her. Neither would Rod Rosenstein; Neither would Jeff Sessions. Neither would any federal prosecutor anywhere in the country; neither would any state prosecutor either, for that matter.

    In fact, the FBI seemed more interested in the extensive and well documented ties between members of Trump’s campaign team and Russian intelligence agencies than anything about Hillary Clinton.

    Well, that just shows how wide and complex and far-reaching the deep state conspiracy goes, right, right-wingers? It certainly couldn’t be that you are brainwashed morons who can’t tell the difference between National Inquirer nonsense and reality. That surely couldn’t be it, could it, right-wingers?

  • Maybe it’s just me, but I always wondered why Obama who really did almost nothing for his fellow Democrats in the 10 & 14 midterms, tried to move heaven and earth to get Evita in. Perhaps she knows “where the bodies are buried” Looks like Obama found a swamp even bigger than Chicago to swim in. Always wondered why Chief Justice Roberts re-wrote the Obamacare decision at the last moment. You never know what you’ll find out when you spy on the Supreme Court. Nixon had nothing on this guy!!

  • Shifty has that Coke Head look and acts about as paranoid and unstable as one.

  • What has happened to America’s political Right Wing? Hard to believe people like Kimball here are providing cover for the President to continue spreading his ample rear haunches for Vladimir Putin.

  • So the right keeps up the ‘memo’ distraction as more and more real news comes out about the Russians actually getting into many states voting systems, and Trump not responding, according to Mike Rogers, his own NSA chief. Meanwhile the White House continues to whine about it starting under Obama as an excuse for not doing anything. The public notices.. congressional generic ballot swung back to heavily D after a short bump. Thankfully there seem to still be enough people who can distinguish between whining and leadership.

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  • LOL…how many indictments and guilty pleas are we up to now? 19?

    This entire administration is corrupt and Mueller is going to bring it all crashing down…despite the lies like this echo-chamber opinion piece keep trying to sell….

    • Collusion?
      Indictments for collusion?
      Please show us as you are the only person with proof of this on earth
      As for those 19 process crimes they are unrelated to any collusion

  • Criticize the Democrats response if you will, but what is troubling is that half of the populations sees merit in this document. It has been cleverly done to provide red meat to the low born even without providing anything close to a damning fact. And the Attorney General just allows this propaganda to exist without challenge for its duplicity. Jeff Sessions, where are you!

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