Well, it was supposed to be out on Friday, and the book is already on sale, but the NYT asks, (through Hot Air) Will There Be Smoking Guns In The Mueller Report? Desperately invoking Mifsud and Papadopulous. Cockburn at the Spectator USA thinks it's down to Mueller vs Barr, and the battle to indict Trump
A good rule in journalism is, or ought to be: Never predict. (Just report.) So Cockburn has some explaining to do, having quoted one source saying that Robert Mueller would hand in his report yesterday. The story said members of President Trump’s family would be charged but also noted that it is Department of Justice policy not to indict a sitting President. However, there was no frenzy at the DoJ on Friday, no throng of reporters to make the tourists heading up Pennsylvania Avenue to the White House stop and look. So what happened?Have any of a thousand or so pronouncements about the Special counsel been right? I'm waiting. at Da Caller, ABC News’ Terry Moran: Media, Democrats Face ‘Reckoning’ If Mueller Finds No Collusion
Several sources tell Cockburn that the Special Counsel has indeed completed his report. It is said to recommend indicting three of President Trump’s children – Don junior, Ivanka and Eric – as well as his son-in-law, Jared Kushner. The Attorney General, William Barr, is said to have ‘silently assented’ to this. It’s also claimed that Mueller wants President Trump himself to be indicted. Barr is said to oppose this. The two men met on Friday but apparently could not agree and this was the reason for the delay in any announcement from the DoJ. At least this is what the sources say.
“How big a deal is it if they don’t find collusion for the president?” ABC “This Week” host Martha Raddatz asked Moran.Byron York, WaEx, Yes, Trump is target of 'presidential harassment'
“Huge,” said Moran. “He’s cleared. If Robert Mueller comes back, Mueller became a folk hero in the United States.”
“The central and most serious question in this investigation, the reason Robert Mueller started it: Did the current president of the United States assist the Kremlin in an attack on our democracy? And if Mueller, after two years, comes back and says, ‘I don’t have the evidence to support that charge,’ that’s a reckoning,” he said. “That’s a reckoning for progressives and Democrats who hoped that Mueller would essentially erase the 2016 election. It’s a reckoning for the media. It’s a reckoning across the country if in fact after all this time there was no collusion.”
The president's adversaries of course dismiss his protests as self-interested whining. But the fact is, Trump has a point. He is the target of an extraordinary combination, not just of federal law enforcement and congressional probes, but a long list of less-discussed but potentially consequential investigations by state and local prosecutors and regulators.As Lav Beria liked to say to Joe Stalin, Show me the man, I'll show you the crime. Eventually, Niki Khrushchev had him executed, though. William Krumholz, Da Federalist, 35 Key People Involved In The Russia Hoax Who Need To Be Investigated. A good start, concluding with:
Together, it adds up to a pile-on of unprecedented proportions, by and large the work of blue-state Democrats who stand to gain politically if their investigations succeed in crippling the president.
Recently, the New York State Department of Financial Services, the agency that regulates the insurance business, issued what the New York Times called an "expansive subpoena" to Aon, the insurance broker for the president's companies. The agency leaped into action after former Trump fixer Michael Cohen told the House that Trump had at some point inflated his assets to an insurance company. Cohen, who has pleaded guilty to lying to Congress and faces serious questions about the truthfulness of his latest testimony, supplied no details.
None were needed. "The subpoena that was served on Aon contains no indication that the company or any of its employees engaged in misconduct," the Times reported. "Nor does it specify any possible wrongdoing that is the focus of the inquiry by state regulators." The subpoena demanded "a broad range of materials" related to Trump's dealings with Aon going back a decade, the Times said.
Was the Kremlin behind this whole thing, in order to sow distrust in the American political process? If so, that would make far too many Democrats their “useful idiots.” Why isn’t there more uproar about the fact that Fusion GPS was working for Russia while it was working for the Clinton campaign?Sundance at CTH, FOIA Discovery Reveals AG Jeff Sessions Initiation Letter To U.S. Attorney John Huber…
The other gnawing problem is the timeline to all of this. In early June 2016, the DNC publicly said that it had been hacked, two days after WikiLeaks announced that it had information that showed Clinton and the DNC were mistreating Sanders. Right away, Steele began his work for Fusion GPS in June.
The DNC says it first noticed that it was hacked on April 28, 2016. But DNC staffers weren’t forced to turn over their presumably infected equipment until June 10, 2016. And numerous set-up attempts of Trump campaign people occurred during 2016, possibly as early as April 2016.
You don’t have to think that the Clintons killed Seth Rich to think something stinks to high heaven here. Justice has been grossly miscarried, on a high and far-reaching level. If this is what America is to be like going forward, it will be only a shell of what it once was in the past. The only hope is for Barr’s DOJ to swing into action.
A left-leaning watchdog group, American Oversight, filed a FOIA request in 2017 looking for any communication that might show former AG Jeff Sessions giving instructions to DOJ officials to target Hillary Clinton for investigations.Don Surber, Maybe Jeff Sessions pulled the swamp's plug. Swamps are difficult to drain, because the muck settles into the lowest possible state. I caution against optimism.
Ironically, and perhaps serendipitously, the American Oversight FOIA request was submitted on November 22nd, 2017, the exact date Sessions’ chief-of-staff Matt Whitaker was sending a letter to Utah U.S. Attorney John Huber. Had they waited a day, what AO were looking for would have surfaced. However, with the Sessions-Huber communication falling outside the FOIA request window, the DOJ response was delayed until yesterday.
The Sessions letter was an attachment to a email sent by Whitaker to Huber at 5:21pm on November 22nd, 2017. The AG letter to Huber requests Huber to review issues raised by the House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte, and return with advice. Here’s the letter:
Summary: We know when John Huber was assigned to the corruption review (November 22, 2017); and we know the first scope of that review was Clinton issues (working with Horowitz); and we know the outcome the Horowitz/Huber review (on Clinton issues and FBI misconduct) resulted in a disappointing IG report, no criminal referrals [McCabe referral only related to media leaks and lying], and no special counsel.
We also know the IG/Huber review later expanded (March 2018) to cover FISA abuse.
However, we do not know what aspects of the FISA abuse the IG has investigated, if anything, or what accountability outcomes there may be, if any.
It still appears the Mueller probe is the impediment to the public releases of declassified documents and evidence; and we do not know what Huber and Horowitz have been doing for a year on the FISA abuse issues.
However, if Rod Rosenstein is actually leaving the DOJ in the middle of this month; and if he actually does leave; perhaps that indicates Mueller’s investigative roadblock is about to end… timed with the ides of March.
Also from Sundance, Sketchy Notation About Doug Collins Releasing Full Unredacted Bruce Ohr Transcript….
NBC News penned an article about the unorthodox release of DOJ official Bruce Ohr’s transcript. Within the article NBC notes current DOJ officials responded to the congressional request for release by sending them an approved “redacted version”:It has always been about protecting the Obama/Clinton/DOJ/FBI cabal, not protecting the Republic. Jim Jordan Discusses Pelosi and Schiff’s Manipulation of Michael Cohen…
(NBC) […] The transcripts of interviews with Ohr and other witnesses before the joint committee investigation were sent to the Justice Department last December to be vetted for public release at the request of the outgoing GOP chairmen, Bob Goodlatte from the Judiciary Committee and Trey Gowdy from the Oversight Committee.Having read the Ohr transcript (also provided below), there didn’t appear to be any national security interests, sources or methods, beyond investigative embarrassment for DOJ and FBI, simply because of the sham of it all.
The Justice Department returned the Ohr transcript to the committee this week with redactions. But Collins said he was releasing a copy without those edits because the changes sought by the department did not relate to classified information or sensitive personal data. By releasing the transcript on the House floor, Collins would be protected under what is known as the Speech and Debate Clause from any reprimand. (read more)
What parts did the current DOJ redact, and what would have been their justification? What did the current DOJ attempt to hide? …Maybe Representative Doug Collins could provide the redacted version, so we can find out. Curiouser, and curiouser…
Schiff getting his time in the papers, Boston Herald, Adam Schiff should worry about his own collusion, WaT, Schiff: Erik Prince interview doesn't match testimony to House intel committee. WaPoo, Schiff says it’s a ‘mistake’ for Mueller not to interview Trump
Fox, McCabe says he was 'shocked' by Manafort sentencing, but does not think Trump's comments had influence.
"I was really surprised by the sentence he was given. I think it’s an incredibly lenient sentence in light not just of the offenses he was convicted for, but the additional offenses that he has pled guilty to in D.C.," McCabe said during an appearance on CBS's "Face the Nation."Umm, Manafort wasn't being sentenced for the "additional offenses." I'm shocked at his basic ignorance. I look forward to commenting on how shockingly short Andy McCabe's sentence for lying to Federal investigators is.
"Like most people, I was shocked by how lenient the sentence was,” he added.