Russia investigation

Mueller subpoenas Bannon [UPDATED]

Featured image The New York Times reports that special counsel Robert Mueller has subpoenaed Steve Bannon to testify before a grand jury as part of the free-wheeling investigation of many things Trump. The Times speculates that Mueller would be willing to forgo the grand jury appearance if Bannon agrees to be questioned by investigators in the less formal setting. It’s also possible that Mueller thinks Bannon would prefer to testify pursuant to »

“Sessions tries to regain Trump’s favor”

Featured image That’s the top headline in today’s Washington Post (paper edition). I’m not sure why it’s newsworthy, though. Naturally, a Cabinet member wants to be in the good graces of his boss, the president. There’s no job security, and not much chance of being very effective, without the president’s favor. It would be newsworthy if a Cabinet member tried to curry favor by acting lawlessly. However, nowhere in the Post’s article »

Glenn Simpson: The New Yorker version

Featured image John Cassidy reviews the transcript of Glenn Simpson’s interview with the Senate Judiciary Committee staff for readers of the New Yorker in “The Digger Who Commissioned the Trump-Russia Dossier Speaks.” As one might infer from the headline’s reference to Simpson as “the digger,” Cassidy takes Simpson’s account of himself at face value. Cassidy gives no hint of the anomalies, peculiarities, and inanities in Simpson’s testimony. Power Line readers may want »

Report: FBI used dossier to obtain FISA warrant

Featured image Sara Carter reports that the unverified dossier alleging connections between President Trump’s campaign and the Russians was used as evidence by the FBI to gain approval from the FISA court to monitor members of Trump’s team. Carter cites “multiple sources.” Carter also notes that Sean Hannity says he has independently confirmed the dossier was used to obtain the FISA warrant. Hannity relies on three sources. Meanwhile, Byron York reports that »

Notes on the Simpson transcript, cont’d

Featured image Yesterday I posted 15 notes plus an afterthought on the transcript of the Senate Judiciary Committee staff interview of Fusion GPS principal Glenn Simpson. I want briefly to round up my number of notes to 20. 16. The express terms under which Simpson testified do not appear in the transcript. One must infer them from the comments interjected by Simpson’s lawyer at the interview. Certain subjects were off limits. One »

Trump won’t commit to Mueller interview

Featured image Today, during a news conference with the prime minister of Norway, reporters asked President Trump whether he will submit to an interview with Robert Mueller without preconditions. Trump responded: “I’ll speak to attorneys, we’ll see what happens.” Trump went on to say: For 11 months, they’ve had this phony cloud over this administration, over our government, and it has hurt our government. When they have no collusion, and nobody’s found »

Notes on the Simpson transcript

Featured image Having read the transcript of the Senate Judiciary Committee interview of GPS Fusion principal Glenn Simpson by Senate Judiciary Committee staff, I want to post a few notes and observations on the transcript. The partially redacted transcript was posted online yesterday by Senator Dianne Feinstein. Feinstein posted the transcript here. The transcript runs 312 pages. All we have is the transcript itself. Feinstein omitted exhibits and other matter related to »

Glenn Simpson Knows Nothing, Apparently

Featured image Having read the transcript of the interview that Fusion GPS head Glenn Simpson gave to investigators from the Senate Judiciary Committee, I have the following observations: 1) Simpson offered no meaningful support for the truth of the allegations in the Donald Trump dossier that he peddled to journalists. It was his subcontractor Christopher Steele who gathered the “human intelligence” in Russia that was the basis for the dossier. Simpson’s contributions »

Feinstein posts Simpson transcript

Featured image Senate Judiciary Committee member Dianne Feinstein has released the transcript of Fusion GPS principal Glenn Simpson’s interview this past August 17 and posted it online here. Feinstein released the transcript with the support of committee Democrats acting unilaterally. In doing so, Feinstein and her Democratic colleagues are acting at Simpson’s behest. In his recent New York Times op-ed column (written with his colleague Peter Fritsch), Simpson complained about Republicans’ leak »

Mueller lays a trap

Featured image The Washington Post reports that Robert Mueller has told President Trump’s legal team that his office will likely seek an interview with the president. I doubt that Trump’s legal team is surprised. It always seemed inevitable that Mueller would want to interview Trump. What should the president’s response be? I agree with Alan Dershowitz. He says: “I would never let the prosecution interview my client.” There are two reasons why, »

Ohr what?

Featured image As Sundance has tracked the cast of characters in the Obama administration who were involved in the putative surveillance of the Trump campaign, he has noted the apparent toll of ongoing investigations on their jobs. Among notable examples at the FBI are Andrew McCabe and Peter Strzok. The toll reflects suspected or actual wrongdoing of one kind or another. Something is happening here. Comparable changes have taken place at the »

Sens. Grassley & Graham: Investigate this

Featured image Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley and Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism Chairman Lindsey Graham have referred the Christopher Steele to the Justice Department for investigation of potential violations of 18 U.S.C. § 1001 for false statements “investigators have reason to believe Steele made to them,” according to Senator Grassley’s press release. Steele is of course the apparent author of the dossier of memos full of salacious misinformation and »

Manafort’s complaint [updated]

Featured image Yesterday Paul Manafort filed a lawsuit against the Department of Justice, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, and Special Counsel Robert Mueller. In the lawsuit, among other things, Manafort seeks to have the actions taken against him by Mueller set aside as beyond his authority. Politico has posted a copy of Manafort’s Complaint here. I won’t comment on the merits of the lawsuit before the defendants respond and its substance is »

Disinformation, Fusion GPS style

Featured image Early yesterday I wrote briefly about the New York Times op-ed column by Fusion GPS principals Glenn Simpson and Peter Fritsch. I appended the dossier itself to my comments to let readers see the disparity between the column’s claims and their description of it. NRO’s Andrew McCarthy explicitly exposes the deep duplicity of the Simpson/Fritsch column and of the Times itself in “Beating a hasty retreat from the Steele dossier.” »

Glenn Simpson advises: Move along

Featured image In the editorial “A moment of contempt,” the Wall Street Journal notes that today is the deadline set by the House Intelligence Committee for the Department of Justice and FBI to turn over documents related to the Steele/Trump dossier purporting to investigate ties between the Trump campaign and Russia. The Journal adds that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and FBI Director Christopher Wray have had the subpoenas since August 24, »

The new Times origin story

Featured image On New Year’s Eve I read and briefly commented on that day’s big “news” reported by the New York Times in its new Russia/Trump collusion story. The Times reported that that the previously obscure Trump campaign aide George Papadopoulos was the man who kicked off the putative case. Credited to six reporters, the Times headlined its page-one story is “How the Russia inquiry began: A campaign aide, drinks and talk »

The Times diversion

Featured image In collusion news today, the New York Times has devoted six reporters to producing the “news” that the previously obscure Trump campaign aide George Papadopoulos lies at the heart of the putative case. Their story is “How the Russia inquiry began: A campaign aide, drinks and talk of political dirt.” Paul wrote about it last night here. I think the story is ludicrous on its face. The Times has served »