Sunday, April 14, 2019

Russiagate Richochet

From Stacy McCain, The Collusion Delusion Boomerang:
Democrats and the media (but I repeat myself) have still not recovered from Attorney General William Barr’s testimony Wednesday that he believes “spying did occur” in 2016, and that he intends to investigate the Obama administration’s surveillance of the Trump campaign. That word “spying” seemed to have a traumatic effect on Democrats, and their media allies immediately began to spin this as Barr promoting a “conspiracy theory,” even though it is just a plain statement of known facts: Yes, the FBI targeted Trump campaign officials for surveillance, based on the Steele dossier commissioned by the Clinton campaign. . . .
I believe the outrage at Barr's spying statement is purely faux. They know spying occurred, it's just to get the talking point out that it's not spying, under a new Newspeak definition of spying. As pointed out at WaEx, The debate used to be about whether spying on Trump campaign officials was justified, not whether it occurred. George Parry, WaEx, The Day of Reckoning Is at Hand. John Leonard, a AmThink, it's Worse than Watergate.
In 1972, Republicans were caught using former CIA operatives to spy on their political rivals. In 2016, Democrats have now been caught using active FBI and senior Department of Justice employees to spy on President Trump. It is no longer debatable whether or not it happened, because A. G. Barr just told us it happened. The only question that remains is whether or not they had any sort of justifiable reason for doing so, except that question seems to have already been resolved by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, because his report found no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government. In fact, the opposite appears to be true -- it looks as if federal agencies conspired with foreign governments to entrap peripheral members of the Trump campaign.
Stream, If It Walks Like a Spy, Talks Like a Spy, Acts Like a Spy …
Nancy Pelosi was shaking like she was covered in ants. Barr is “going off the rails.” Senators Chuck Schumer and Richard “Stolen Valor” Blumenthal demanded Barr retract. NBC’s Chuck Todd, over the sound of Tim Russert rolling over in his grave, moaned “The attorney general gaslit the country.”

Todd insisted there’s “zero factual basis” for saying Obama administration spied on the Trump campaign. Chuck Todd is lying through his goatee. And Gang of Eight members Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer? The worst acting by any high profile duo since J-Lo and Ben Affleck did Gigli. (2003 flick scored a 6% on the Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer.)

As Kimberley Strassel tweeted this morning: “Everyone in the press knows this was ‘spying’ and moreover that they would be using that word if this were govt. surveillance they didn’t like.”
 Power Line, No “spying” at the FBI.
The spying on the 2016 Trump presidential campaign is the biggest scandal in American political history. Whatever other scandal you might nominate doesn’t come close. And rather than Dr. Strangelove I should be quoting the authorities of Oceania in 1984: “Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past.”

We may have no more than the next 20 months to get to the bottom of the scandal. Attorney General Barr can’t afford to waste one minute.
Neo, At what Democrats thought would be their time of triumph, instead they fear a day of reckoning may come. I'd like to believe it, but I'm not that confident.
You can feel the frisson of fear they emanate. They waited two years for the blow of the Mueller report to fall on Trump, and now other investigative blows may fall on them. The Mueller report combined with Barr’s appointment could end up being a sort of ironic boomerang (whether or not boomerangs can be ironic I leave to you to decide).
RCI, Opinion: Why the Trump-Russia Pulitzer Was No Prize. The Pulitzers have devolved into the prom-queendom of journolism, just a popularity contest, no real journalism allowed.CR, Mark Levin shreds Democrats and media as they attack Attorney General Barr: ‘They’re the experts?!’

Fox, Joseph diGenova: James 'Cardinal' Comey — the man who destroyed the FBI "Wyatt Earp. Elliot Ness. J. Edgar Hoover. Inspector Clouseau. James Comey. The names reflect a continuum, from greatness to farce and mediocrity." Sundance at CTH, Rudy Giuliani Discusses DOJ/FBI “Spying” and Mueller/Rosenstein Role in “Framing”…

Western Free Press, Rod Rosenstein Rebukes Democrats and Mainstream Media "Calls Democrats accusations against William Barr's handling of Mueller report "Completely Bizarre"" IMHO, the jury is still out on Rosenstein. Sundance at CTH, Bloomberg – Rosenstein: “Robert Mueller’s report describes Russian cybercrimes during the 2016 election”… And he should know, he was overseeing the darn thing. Kevin Jackson, First of MANY Democrats Indicted over Russian Collusion. From his mouth to God's ear? Trey Gowdy on Barr's spying claims, Greg Craig indicted

Molly Hemingway at Da Federalist, Stefanik Moves To Prevent Comey-Era Spy Abuses At FBI "The bill requires the FBI director to inform Congress when investigations of candidates for federal office are undertaken by federal law enforcement."
The legislation from Stefanik, a three-term representative from New York, addresses a loophole in current law that allowed Comey to unilaterally withhold that information from key congressional oversight bodies. In a March 2017 hearing, Comey admitted to Stefanik that he did not follow the typical protocols or procedures regarding notifying Congress about the opening of a counterintelligence investigation in part because he was not required to do so.

Pressed to explain why he waited nine months to brief the leaders of the House and Senate intelligence committees, he admitted he was supposed to provide quarterly updates but had refused to do so regarding the Trump-Russia probe for the same reason many thought he should have done so. “I think our decision was, it was a matter of such sensitivity that we wouldn’t include it in the quarterly briefings,” he said.
More old news reinforced by the Priestap testimony from Red State, Testimony Of Top FBI Counterintelligence Division Official Suggests British Intelligence Involvement In Conspiracy To Bring Down Trump. Richard Fernandez at the Belmont Club, The Real Takeaway of the Failed Mueller Investigation: Washington Is Crawling with Foreign Influencers. Well, where else are they going to go?

Ed Morrissey at Hot Air, Stone’s “Hail Mary” Play: Give Me The Full Mueller Report
Whatever it lacks in legal merit, the latest motions from Roger Stone’s legal team more than make up in chutzpah. A blizzard of filings that Politico calls a “Hail Mary” playaim at getting Stone’s indictment dismissed, or at least to make it as painful as possible to pursue. Some of the demands are retreads, but one in particular might create some headaches for Robert Mueller and the Department of Justice:
. . . In addition to arguing that his indictment should be tossed, Stone is seeking access to the full contents of Mueller’s final report on links between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin, arguing that he has a unique right to see the report and review any evidence it may contain that is relevant to his defense.
“His lawyers must be allowed to review the Report in its entirety because it contains the government’s evidence and conclusions on matters essential to Stone’s defense,” Stone’s attorney Robert Buschel wrote in the filing.
Stone’s hardly the only one with an interest in the unredacted report. Wouldn’t it be delicious if House Judiciary chair Jerrold Nadler filed an amicus brief in support of Stone’s motion? Politics make strange bedfellows indeed.
When you can't trust your local creepy porn lawyer, who can you trust? Da Caller, Avenatti Allegedly Scammed Paraplegic Client Out Of $4 Million Settlement
Michael Avenatti was indicted Thursday on 36 charges of tax fraud, bribery and embezzlement, including in a case in which the embattled celebrity lawyer allegedly hid $4 million of settlement money from a mentally ill, paraplegic client.

Avenatti’s alleged scam caused his client, Geoffrey Ernest Johnson, to miss two months worth of Social Security Administration disability payments earlier in 2019, according to The Los Angeles Times.
Jazz Shaw at Hot Air, Flashback: When Michael Avenatti Was The “Savior Of The Republic”

with apologies for the occasional flashes of Joy Behar. He needs to get back in the 2020 running!

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