Tuesday, June 4, 2019

And Yet Still More Russiagate

Hot Air cites the WSJ in William Barr’s Fresh Air. I can't read it all, but maybe you can.
If you want to know why William Barr is under political attack, consider his interview last week with Jan Crawford of CBS News. It’s a humdinger, in which the Attorney General challenges the received wisdom about the investigation into Trump-Russia collusion.
Doug Ross reprints Julie Kelly's ATTORNEY GENERAL BARR: ‘Small Group at the Top’ Directed ‘Bogus’ Russia Collusion Probe
Without naming names, Barr hinted that former top officials may have abused their power by violating department protocols to launch an unprecedented counterintelligence probe into a political rival.

“These counter-intelligence activities that were directed at the Trump Campaign were not done in the normal course and not through the normal procedures as a far as I can tell,” Barr told CBS News’ legal analyst Jan Crawford. “And a lot of the people who were involved are no longer there.”
Sundance at CTH, John Ratcliffe Discusses Current Barr Review…

and Modified Declassification Expectations Amid Clarity of Purpose from Ratcliffe…

Jonathon Turley, Mueller’s Lack Of Explanations Raises New Questions of His Motivations On Three Key Decisions
It is not just his legal interpretation that is incomprehensible. Mueller was appointed almost two years before he released his report. He was fully aware that Congress, the Justice Department, the media, and the public expected him to reach conclusions on criminal conduct, a basic function of the special counsel. He also was told he should do so by the attorney general and deputy attorney general. Yet, he relied on two highly controversial opinions written by a small office in the Justice Department.

Over those two years, Mueller could have asked his superiors for a decision on this alleged policy barring any conclusions on criminal conduct. More importantly, he could have requested an opinion from the Office of Legal Counsel. That is what the Office of Legal Counsel does, particularly when its own opinions are the cause of confusion. One would think you would be even more motivated to do so, if you intended to ignore the view of the attorney general and his deputy that there is no such policy.

Mueller, however, is an experienced litigator who knows not to ask a question when you do not know the answer or when you know the answer and do not want to hear it. His position is even more curious, given his lack of action after Barr and Rosenstein did precisely what he said could not be done under Justice Department policies. If Mueller believed such conclusions are impermissible, why did he not submit the matter to the Justice Department inspector general?

His press conference captured his report perfectly. It was an effort to allude to possible crimes without, in fairness to the accused, clearly and specifically stating those crimes. Mueller knew that was incrimination by omission. By emphasizing he could not clear Trump of criminality, Mueller knew the press would interpret that as a virtual indictment.

What is concerning is not that each of his three decisions clearly would undermine Trump or Barr but that his decisions ran against the grain for a special counsel. The law favored the other path in each instance. Thus, to use Mueller’s own construction, if we could rule out a political motive, we would have done so. This is why Mueller must testify and must do so publicly.
At Hot Air, Allahpundit reports that the Dersh asks If Mueller Couldn’t Indict Trump, Why Did We Have A Special Counsel At All? Good question. He also says Corrupt Mueller probe should be ‘the death knell’ for special counsels (Video). One can hope. From WaPoo, (new 30 day pass) Hugh Hewitt claims The Mueller fiasco proves that a special counsel position can’t work and Child porn charge for Mueller witness. But trust us!

NPR considers Democrats' Dilemma: Would Pushing For Mueller To Testify Hurt Or Help? I certainly have some questions for him. At Da Beast, David Lurie says Mueller Screwed Up by Staying Silent So Long, while at NYPo, Marc Thiessen says Mueller should have just kept his mouth shut. Well, he certainly didn't clear anything up, did he?

At Epoch Times, Stephen Meister notes, A Partisan Mueller Seeks, Without Evidence, to Incite Impeachment. At AmThink, Thomas Lifson writes that Mueller Report busted for doctoring transcript and misleading on obstruction of justice evidence and  Daniel John Sobieski calls out Mueller for Obstruction of Justice.
By his own standards Robert Mueller was guilty of making “false statements” in his parting gift to Democrat impeachment seekers. He was not, however,  under legal oath, which is maybe why Democrats did not want him to be questioned by Congress in a hearing beforehand.

Mueller has had to walk back his lie about Office of Legal Counsel policy keeping him from indicting a sitting president. In his alleged “farewell” address, former Special Counsel Mueller managed to channel former FBI Director James Comey. Where is it written that former FBI directors get to recite a litany of possible charges against someone they are not going to charge? If, as Mueller had said, you could indict a sitting President,  and that is why he was not indicted, then why did he spend some $40 million the past two years pursuing an indictment? Just what happened to the presumption of innocence?
Also from AmThink, In All the Mueller Talk, Don't Forget the Embarrassing Jerrold Nadler by Gordon Wysong
Once Nadler decided to champion a conspiracy theory — that is as patently false and easily disprovable as Russian collusion — he and we have to play out the string.  In doing so, he got applause from the MSM that would embarrass a self-respecting person.  Like the dupe whitewashing a fence, there is no awareness of being used.  Now he is stuck with his weird position, since he cannot muzzle the ego that motivates him and thereby run the risk of disappointing his MSM worshipers.  Not self-aware enough to know he is UFO crazy, he keeps going, and going, and going.
From Wombat's In The Mailbox: 06.03.19, Don Surber's Democrats stuck with Russiagate
The only collusion in the 2016 election was between Donald John Trump and voters in 30 states.

But Democrats manufactured the Russian Collusion excuse after he beat them, their crone candidate, their billionaire donors, and their sycophants in the media.

For two years, Democrats promised the Mueller Report would bring him down.

But it didn't. Mueller could not find a smidgen of collusion.

This presents a problem for next year because Democrats promised their base they would impeach the Orange Man. They didn't. In the eyes of their base, they are failures and cowards.

To the rest of us, Democrats are fools who fell a hoax.
Byron York at WaEx, Law enforcement, media changed standards for Trump. Guilty until exonerated, and even then, maybe not.
It's not surprising that commentators, especially those with partisan motives, would adopt such a low standard. It was surprising when — and this is example number two — Trump-Russia special counsel Robert Mueller upended the justice system's traditional norms by declaring that his investigation, while not accusing the president of committing a crime, also could not exonerate him.
Also Daniel John Sobieski at AmThink, John Huber Took Us for a Ride, to nowhere.
When you keep losing evidence providing documentation for Hillary's crimes and sit on an investigation of FISA abuses involving your boss, Rod Rosenstein, something's fishy. Huber, like Rosenstein, Mueller, and a few others, should be the target of an investigation, not conducting them.
Jed Babbin at AmSpec, Who Ran Crossfire Hurricane? Barr’s investigators should focus on John Brennan and Gina Haspel. Turns out Gina Haspel, a John Brennan mentee, was CIA boss where a lot of spygate skullduggery took place (London). We need to know what she knew and when she knew it.
Haspel’s longstanding loyalty to Brennan ranks her among the two or three worst personnel choices made by President Trump.

Her loyalty to Brennan is more than a little relevant to Durham’s investigation because, as noted above, Haspel was the CIA’s Chief of Station (COS) in London from 2014-2017. It was during the latter two years of her tenure there when all of the FBI/CIA spying operation on Trump and his campaign occurred.
Breitbart reminds us, Biden Present at Russia Collusion Briefing Documented in ‘Odd’ Susan Rice Email.
Biden’s largely unreported role in the initial Obama administration meetings on the matter of Russian interference could spark further questions now that Attorney General William Barr has appointed a U.S. attorney to investigate the origins of the Russia collusion claims.
On the impeachment follies, from Chuck Ross at Da Caller, Third-Ranking Democrat Says House Will Eventually Impeach Trump  (all they need is the excuse), but Dem Congresswoman Says Impeaching Trump Would ‘Play Into Russia’s Hands’ (Pj Media's Matt Margolis). They'd help Putin if it helped them get Trump. From Big League Politics, LIFE IMITATES MEMES: Democrats Chant “Orange Man Bad” At Trump Impeachment March. Also via the Wombat, Volokh Conspiracy: No, I’m Serious – The Roberts Court Won’t Save Trump From Impeachment. I would expect no less.

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