FISAgate

We take this break from Jane Mayer

Featured image We want to keep up with the serious journalism that helps us understand the synthetic Trump-Russia collusion scandal that is the subject of the unending Mueller project. The synthetic scandal is of course the sign of a true Obama administration scandal. Drawing on the work of Andrew McCarthy and Lee Smith, Michael Doran now gives us “The real collusion story.” It is necessary reading. Doran’s essay provides a marked contrast »

Understanding Russiagate

Featured image Lee Smith is one of the two commentators whom one must read to understand the synthetic Trump-Russia collusion scandal and the real intelligence scandal that underlies it. The other is Andrew McCarthy. Lee’s current Tablet column is “Who believes in Russiagate?” Lee draws on his reporting and analysis of the past several years to give the big picture and to name names (here he singles out Adam Entous, formerly of »

Trump projects his vindictiveness and bad faith onto others

Featured image This week, U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel ruled against a legal challenge to the border wall. He ruled that the Trump administration has the authority to waive a host of environmental laws and other regulations in order to begin construction. Readers will recall that, during the course of litigation involving “Trump University,” Trump claimed that Curiel was biased against him because Curiel “happens to be, we believe, Mexican.” Curiel is »

Reading the Dems’ memo [updated]

Featured image As I quickly read the Dems’ memo proclaiming that everything was beautiful in the counterintelligence investigation of Russian election interference, I was struck by its argumentative nature. It is not a trustworthy document. It plays fast and loose with facts and argument. It refutes claims the Nunes memo didn’t make. It liberally trashes Carter Page. It omits the testimony of Andrew McCabe on the critical role played by the Steele »

Nunes responds

Featured image House Intelligence Commmittee Chairman Devin Nunes was ready to go with his own response to the Democrats’ memo that I have embedded in the adjacent post. I have uploaded his point-by-point response to Scribd and embedded it below. It is a useful document. Moreover, by contrast with Adam Schiff et al., Nunes is a credible player. Consistent with my comments, he notes some of the Democrats’ rebuttals of points not »

Deep thoughts by James Comey

Featured image The four-page House Intelligence Committee memo on “Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act Abuses at the Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation” has been released. John has posted the memo along with his summary in the adjacent post. One would never know from his comments that former FBI Director James Comey is directly implicated in the memo’s recitation of facts and wrongdoing. He challenges no facts set forth in »

Motions full of Schiff

Featured image The House Intelligence Committee released the transcript of its proceedings earlier this week in which the majority voted to release the four-page memo on FISA abuse that is to be released later today. The committee has posted the transcript here. Ranking minority member Adam Schiff emerged from the closed door proceedings to denounce the release of the four-page memo without a Democratic counterpart, which he neglected to mention had not »

Full of Schiff on Dem memo

Featured image After the House Intelligence Committee voted to release the four-page Nunes memo summarizing the abuse of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act in the course of the 2016 presidential election, ranking minority member Adam Schiff rushed to the microphones to disparage the release of the memo on various grounds. Bret Baier cut to Schiff’s press conference live during Special Report last night. I thought Schiff must be downplaying and omitting the »

Explosive House Memo to be Released, As McCabe Leaves FBI

Featured image The House Intelligence Committee voted today to release the four-page memo that sums up FBI and Department of Justice abuses relating to the Steele dossier, the Obama administration’s FISA applications, and improper spying on the Trump campaign by the Obama administration. It appears that the memo’s contents are as has been rumored: South Carolina GOP Rep. Trey Gowdy, who helped write the four-page memo, said Sunday he wants it made »

Joe diGenova: Beyond foreplay

Featured image Paul appended former US Attorned/former Independent Counsel Joseph diGenova’s interview with Ginni Thomas to his update on “That explosive House Intel Committee document.” In the interview diGenova lucidly exposes the Trump/Russia collusion illusion for what it is and name checks the principal malefactors. It is well worth the time to take it in. As a commenter on Paul’s post pointed out, diGenova also appeared on WMAL’s Mornings on the Mall »

Comey speaks

Featured image The FBI’s counterintelligence investigation of alleged Trump campaign “collusion” with Russia has now been taken over by Special Counsel Robert Mueller. The investigation seems to have involved abuse of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act in general and section 702 in particular, under which the National Security Agency’s warrantless surveillance program operates. Under the leadership of James Comey, the FBI appears to have conducted wayward surveillance of the Trump campaign. If »

Trump’s “Obama had my ‘wires tapped'” claim still not vindicated

Featured image Do reports (if true) that the government wiretapped Paul Manafort, including during times when he worked for candidate Trump, vindicate President Trump’s claims about the Obama administration wiring tapping his campaign? I don’t think so. To see whether Trump has been vindicated, we need to consider what he actually said about wiretapping. The tweet that generated the controversy said this: Terrible! Just found out that Obama had my “wires tapped” »

Sharyl Attkisson’s timeline

Featured image Investigative journalist Sharyl Attkisson has prepared an “Obama-era Surveillance Timeline.” It is a mixed bag, containing seemingly indefensible conduct by the Obama administration, but also conduct that I consider justified and proper (e.g., the prosecution of CIA leaker Jeffrey Sterling). It’s clear to me from the timeline, though, that the kinds of intelligence abuses we’re hearing about now did not begin when Team Obama became concerned about Donald Trump. Attkisson »

Has Trump’s “wires tapped” tweet been vindicated?

Featured image As John discussed last night, the Washington Post is reporting that the FBI obtained a FISA warrant to monitor former Trump adviser Carter Page. If the report is true, and I assume it is, this means that the Obama administration obtained a FISA order to spy on at least one campaign associate of Donald Trump. John contends that the surveillance of Page means Trump’s famous tweets about Obama tapping his »

A Shoe Drops: Obama Administration Spied On Carter Page [Updated]

Featured image I assume this Washington Post story is true: “FBI obtained FISA warrant to monitor former Trump adviser Carter Page.” It confirms what has been sporadically reported since late last year, that the Obama administration sought and ultimately received a FISA order to spy on at least one associate of Donald Trump. So Trump’s famous tweets were, in substance, true. The FBI obtained a secret court order last summer to monitor »

Josh Earnest Doesn’t Deny Trump’s Surveillance Claims

Featured image Martha Raddatz of ABC asked former press secretary Josh Earnest whether he would deny President Trump’s claim that the Obama administration spied on his campaign. Much like former President Obama’s current spokesman, Earnest weaseled: She asked Josh Earnest point-blank, “Can you categorically deny that the Obama Justice Department did not seek and obtain a FISA court order? [sic]” His response was full of weasel words: “What I can categorically deny, »

FISAgate: Where We Are Now

Featured image I was on the Seth and Chris show with our friend Seth Leibsohn in Phoenix last night, talking about FISAgate. I think the conversation provides a good summary of what we know–and, equally important, don’t know–about this story. Here it is: »