Sunday, May 6, 2018

Rascally Russiagate

More bad news for Robert Mueller as Federal Judge Catches Robert Mueller Using Preexisting FISA Title-1 Warrant Against Paul Manafort Instead of Title 3 Authority… I don't know what that means, but it sounds naughty. And another judge in another matter  rejects Mueller's request for delay in Russian troll farm case. Yea, you know the 13 Russians and three companies that no one, least of all Mueller expected to show up in court and defend themselves.
Last month, however, a pair of Washington-area lawyers suddenly surfaced in the case, notifying the court that they represent Concord Management. POLITICO reported at the time that the move appeared to be a bid to force Mueller’s team to turn over relevant evidence to the Russian firm and perhaps even to bait prosecutors into an embarrassing dismissal in order to avoid disclosing sensitive information.

On Friday, Mueller’s prosecutors disclosed that Concord’s attorneys, Eric Dubelier and Kate Seikaly, had made a slew of discovery requests demanding nonpublic details about the case and the investigation. Prosecutors also asked a judge to postpone the formal arraignment of Concord Management set for next week.
I guess those cases weren't as solid as we were led to believe. More at Red State: Robert Mueller Is Facing A Humiliating End To One Of His High Profile Indictments
This scam seemed foolproof. The thirteen Russians were never going to be caught. Two of the three companies were already under US sanctions and not likely to worry a whole lot about a US indictment. Mueller got the press. No work was involved. All is good.

Then in April, the most amazing thing happened. One of the indicted companies informed Mueller that it had retained US counsel and would see him in court. You could hear the collective sphincters of the special counsel’s office snap shut as far away as Kenosha, WI.

Now the little publicity stunt, the bone tossed to the NeverTrump crowd, suddenly became a liability. Just how big a liability became obvious yesterday and today.

Because the Russian oligarch has enough money to hire real lawyers who fight for a living, Mueller faced real opposition rather than people with no resources to defend themselves. You can be excused for looking at the manhandling Mueller’s people took from Manafort’s legal team and concluding they aren’t used to doing much besides bullying indigent defendants into a plea bargain.
. . .
On Wednesday, we’ll see what kind of a case Mueller has. I suspect it is a shallow and suspect as everything else he’s touched. If this case is dismissed, and that is a very real possibility, then the Russia portion of Mueller’s investigation is fatally injured in the media and in public opinion and everyone will see the investigation the way the judge described it Friday
Reminder, Manafort Prosecutor Has a History of Bullying, Withholding Information. Scott Johnson at Powerline has the full transcript of him getting his tallies whacked by Judge Ellis at Mueller's Got a Secret (2). The Last Refuge asks Why Did DOJ Asst. AG Rod Rosenstein Reauthorize FISA Warrant on July 18th, 2017? – Mueller and Rosenstein Timeline…
. . . An honest review of the timeline shows the third FISA renewal happened right before Rosenstein and Mueller became aware of the first signs of the corruption. Additionally, a clear hindsight review of the content within the application, vis-a-vis the fraudulent use of the Clinton-Steele dossier, shows a clear reason why it was never reauthorized again; and easily why Carter Page was never charged with anything.

Once the IG and INSD investigators had the time to go deeper into the internal investigation, this is around the point when Utah federal prosecutor John Huber is brought into the findings surfacing within the IG and INSD investigation. Huber’s task likely to review all of the discoveries for potentially criminal conduct, grand jury evidence and possible criminal indictments if warranted.

However, all of that said, none of this explains why Asst. AG Rosenstein did not shut down the special counsel investigation in/around Sept. or October 2017 as soon as the scale of internal corruption was known. Unless the extraneous Flynn, Papadopolous and Manafort findings, some of which likely stemmed from the use of the FISA extensions in the period from May through October, became the agenda for continuance.

Here’s where everyone wants to know motive(s) behind Mueller, Rosenstein and the corresponding investigators. Truthfully, this is also where an argument can be made in both directions.
Rosenstein should still face consequence for rubber stamping the FISA warrant based on the Steele Dossier.

Meanwhile, Mueller attempts to make the lives of any Trump friends miserable. Mueller team questions Trump friend Tom BarrackSpecial counsel Robert Mueller focusing sharply on links between Trump confidant Roger Stone and former campaign official Rick Gates.  Giuliani believes '50/50' chance Mueller subpoenas President Trump. Trump needs to call Mueller into his office and interrogate him regarding the Russia probe, what does he know about FBI corruption, and when did he know it, and did he participate? The FBI Shouldn’t Be above the Law, Either

Comey hired his own secret newsflack using FBI funds: New Details Revealed About Comey's Law Professor Friend That Leaked His Memos
Records reviewed by Fox News showed that Daniel Richman was hired as a "special government employee," and answered directly to Comey. Fox News reports:
During this time, a review of media reports between July 2015 and February 2017 shows Richman gave multiple interviews defending Comey's handling of the Clinton email case, including the controversial decision to reopen the probe shortly before the presidential election. He was typically identified as a law professor, and sometimes as a policy adviser to Comey.
In a TV segment on Fox News, Herridge said in Richman's media interviews, in which he defended Comey, he was never identified as an FBI employee.

"Government transcripts also indicate Richman was sent talking points about the FBI's handling of the Clinton email investigation and why the case was different from other prosecutions for the mishandling of classified information," Herridge said.
House Intel report: Comey testified FBI agents saw no 'physical indications of deception' by Flynn, But Mueller decided to railroad him anyway. Why?

"Mr. Gowdy is the one that reviews all the initial documents with our investigators. I’m not going to get into the processes that we use, but as the chairman of the committee, when they need documents, they come to me," he told Ingraham.

“When they come after you and say Nunes is getting these documents — I think a lot of people want you to have these documents — then you don’t read them, it opens you up to criticism,” the host returned, saying she didn't understand his reluctance to say whether he read the most recent document released to him by the Justice Department.
Poor Trey, having to read all that crap.

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