Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Russiagate Resumption

After yesterday's hiatus brought on by the Veteran's Day fishing trip.

The appointment of Matthew Whitaker to replace Jeff Sessions as acting Attorney General continues to make news. CNSNews: Trump: ‘Don’t Tell Me About Whitaker, Because Mueller Wasn’t Senate Confirmed’
Trump questioned why the Democrats didn’t get Mueller “Senate confirmed.”
“Why didn’t they get him Senate confirmed? He should have been Senate confirmed. No, but because of all of the conflicts, they didn’t want to bring him before the Senate, because he’s very conflicted. So because of those conflicts, they didn’t want to bring him before the Senate, but don’t tell me about Whitaker. Don’t tell me about Whitaker, because Mueller was not Senate confirmed, and Whitaker was,” he said.
WaEx:, Lindsey Graham: No need for Matthew Whitaker to recuse himself from Russia investigation. The death of John McCain seems to have liberated him.  Conservative Review: Levin: Here’s everything the Left SHOULD call a ‘constitutional crisis’ but won’t

AllahPundit at Hot Air: White House Aides Expecting Whitaker To “Rein In” Mueller’s Final Report On Russiagate, Block Any Trump Subpoena, hence Democrats Escalate Push For Matt Whitaker’s Recusal From Mueller Probe (Chuck Rosss, Da Caller), Business Insider: Adam Schiff says if the acting attorney general doesn't recuse himself from the Mueller probe, he'll have to answer to Democrats, Da Hill, Pelosi: Acting attorney general 'should not be there', Lifezette: Chuck Schumer Is Willing to Shut Down the Government to Protect the Mueller Investigation. Oh goody!

Sundance at CTH expounds on The Importance of Matt Whitaker -vs- The Administrative State…
In essence, and against the understanding of how these officials manipulated the recusal of AG Jeff Sessions; DAG Rod Rosenstein, FBI Director Christopher Wray, Deputy FBI Director David Bowditch, FBI Chief Legal Counsel Dana Boente, Special Counsel Robert Mueller and the affiliated network of political operatives within the DOJ/FBI; this crew has held free reign to shape everything in the past two years. That is why there has been ZERO progress.

However, with the resignation of Jeff Sessions and the appointment of Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker, the Deep State landscape has shifted. For the first IG report on Andrew McCabe, and the Second IG report on FBI misconduct and bias, Jeff Sessions was essentially recused from any input or structural oversight because each of the aforementioned IG investigations crossed over into 2016 campaign review and/or the FBI-DOJ counterintelligence operation (Russia).

On this third IG report, looking into FISA abuse, Matt Whitaker has replaced Jeff Sessions . . . 
I'm going to go out on a limb and predict that Whitaker won't be able to satisfy conservatives, but will continue to outrage liberals. OK, that's a short, stout limb. More CTH at Comprehending The DOJ/FBI Administrative State Battle…

Nancy Pelosi states the obvious: Mueller Doesn’t Have to Indict Trump for Congress to Impeach Him. The Constitution has no provision for a Special Counsel, but it does have a provision for impeachment. QED.

Real Clear Investigations: The Silence of Mueller's Trump-Russia 'Canaries'
No evidence has surfaced indicating that President Trump colluded with Russia to steal the 2016 election. Still, two years later, the president’s opponents insist the truth is out there and they know where – in the memory banks and computer files of Trump’s former associates who have struck deals to cooperate with Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

But people with direct knowledge of the situation say the premise of that speculation is false: It's highly unlikely that these associates possess proof of collusion and are singing about it to Mueller.

“It’s wishful thinking by Trump haters,” said a former Trump campaign official who has been the subject of investigation.

Mueller has obtained guilty pleas from four ex-Trump advisers — Michael Flynn, George Papadopoulos, Paul Manafort and Rick Gates — for crimes unrelated to election espionage. Facing the prospect of a lengthy prison sentence, each had strong incentives to turn on the president.

So, too, do other Trump associates reportedly caught in Mueller’s crosshairs – Carter Page, Roger Stone and the president’s former lawyer, Michael Cohen, who has pleaded guilty to crimes referred by Mueller’s office to federal attorneys in Manhattan for prosecution.

Mueller has clamped down on leaks from his office, so it is hard to determine exactly what he has extracted from the witnesses. Nevertheless, substantial information gleaned from various sources by RealClearInvestigations and other news outlets suggests that Trump’s former associates have not provided the smoking gun of collusion. As emboldened Democrats promise to step up their own Russia investigations when they take over the House in January, here is what we know so far about each case.
. . .
Though Trump aides have, one by one, cut plea deals with Mueller, none of their guilty pleas has had anything to do with Russian hacking or interference in the 2016 election, which is what Mueller is supposed to be investigating. Flynn, Papadopoulos, Manafort and Gates all pleaded guilty to other crimes.

But Mueller is still investigating the Russia "collusion” theory, while spending about $1 million a month to make sure no stone is left unturned. And with all these Trump associates talking, it would appear the noose is growing tighter around Trump -- or so goes the conventional wisdom inside the Beltway.
Mueller needs another ham sandwich to justify continuation of his probe: Right-Wing Conspiracy Theorist ‘Pal’ of Roger Stone Reveals He Will Be Indicted

Corsi told ABC News that he didn’t know “what they’re going to charge me with,” saying, “I think my only crime was that I support Donald Trump. That’s my crime, and now I’m going to go to prison for the rest of my life for cooperating with them.”
 It seems likely he's being indicted for having espoused unpopular beliefs, and publicizing them.

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