Sunday, November 24, 2019

Russiagate Rambles On and On

If you read the pullquote carefully, you’ll see CNN’s big concern is not abuse of the surveillance apparatus but rather it “is likely to fuel accusations from President Donald Trump and his allies that the FBI committed wrongdoing in its investigation of connections between Russian election meddling and the Trump campaign.”

That’s why CNN is out in front of this. Keep an eye on this story. CNN and its handlers in the FBI are going to try to shape the narrative going into the Horowitz report unveiling that the FBI did everything right and by the book but there were a few bad apples and…Look! Squirrel!
Republicans pounce! Dan Chaitin and Jerry Dunleavy at WaEx note Mueller lawyer with anti-Trump bias is ex-FBI official facing FISA criminal investigation. One of the little noted facts is that Kevin Clinesmith was a lawyer on the Mueller team, and he was sidelined around the time Peter Strzok and Lisa Page were. It would be nice, if when recounting Mueller's success with convictions, the media would also stress the number of people who had to be eased off the team for gross ethical violations, but don't expect to see that anytime soon. Tom Maguire at Just One Minute say it's Not The Bombshell I Was Waiting For
The NY Times sneak previews the long awaited IG report investigating the investigators. If we can believe the Times - IF! - there will not be fireworks:
. . .
Hmm. Their source may well be a Resistance figure providing a generous gloss on this. I guess we see soon enough.
Meanwhile Sara Carter reports that the Durham Probe Expands to Pentagon Office That Contracted FBI Spy Stephan Halper. Good. Tyler O'Neil at PJ Media, Trump: 'Historic' Durham Investigation Will Implicate Obama in Spygate. Maybe.

Judicial Watch Obtains Strzok-Page Emails Disputing Hillary Clinton’s Claim That She ‘Never Received nor Sent Any Material That Was Marked Classified’ Old news, but it's good to see more evidence. Joe Concha at Da Hill reports that  CNN's McCabe restricted from talking about DOJ IG report. He should shut up entirely. From Chuck Ross at Da Caller, Fusion GPS Book Sheds Light On Former British Spy Chief’s 2016 Meeting With Christopher Steele
In “Crime in Progress,” Fusion GPS founders Glenn Simpson and Peter Fritsch wrote that Dearlove surprised Steele during a meeting in London in December 2016 with information that the British government “had suspicions about links between Russia and members of the Trump campaign.”

Dearlove also told Steele it appeared that British authorities “had made a political decision not to push the matter further,” Simpson and Fritsch write in the book, according to a review from The Guardian.

The Fusion GPS book, which will be released Tuesday, is likely to raise questions about Dearlove’s activities in 2016, including whether he was involved in providing the information to British authorities that he mentioned to Steele.

Steele at the time was investigating Donald Trump and his associates on behalf of Fusion GPS.

Dearlove has largely avoided scrutiny in Russiagate despite his connections to Steele and Stefan Halper, the alleged FBI informant.
From Stacy McCain,  Devin Nunes Sues CNN and Daily Beast Over ‘Demonstrably False’ Stories, meanwhile, the Democrats in Congress attempt to hobble him with a another root canal, Rep. Devin Nunes could face second ethics investigation (Greenwich Times).

As if she expects to lose, Nancy Pelosi Is Already Attacking the Legitimacy of the 2020 Election (David Harsanyi at Da Signal).
Rather than safeguarding the integrity of our elections, Democrats have corroded trust in them. Post-2016 calls for increased control over speech on the internet, for instance, pose a far greater danger to American freedoms than anything our enemies at the Kremlin could cook up.
At WaPoo, I was a juror in Roger Stone’s trial. I am proud of how we came to our decision. Jurors should think more and talk less.

John Lucas at Da Fed, Alexander Vindman’s Impeachment Testimony Displays His Open Insubordination
"Vindman publicly and gratuitously questioned the policies of his commander in chief and did so in a partisan political setting. The U.S. military should nip that in the bud.
"John Lucas is a practicing attorney in Tennessee who has successfully argued before the U. S. Supreme Court. Before entering law school at the University of Texas, he served in the Army Special Forces as an enlisted and then graduated from the U. S. Military Academy at West Point in 1969. He is an Army Ranger and fought in Vietnam as an infantry platoon leader.
But Tobin Smith at NYT, (via Hot Air) whined Why Fox News Slimed A Purple Heart Recipient

Twitchy, ‘OMG that’s amazing’: GQ issues one hell of a correction to article about Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman 
Ooops! President Trump Trolls CNN's Chris Cuomo With Epic Video

Bwahaha! Is there nothing he can't do? Politico Disowns Its Own Reporting Because Trump (Bonchie at Red State), catches Politico trying to deny it's own previous report that Ukraine meddled in the election on Clintons side. Twitchy, Is going after Hunter Biden’s personal shortcomings ‘low rent’? Brandon Darby and Nick Searcy disagree
CNN, Biden: Lindsey Graham will 'regret his whole life' doing Trump's bidding on Ukraine AllahPundit, Biden To Lindsey Graham: You’ll Regret Investigating Me For The Rest Of Your Life. Slow Joe Bluster. If he were a little person and not a big name Democrat, they'd put him jail for threatening a Senator.

Sundance at CTH, Laundry Disruptor – Rudy Giuliani Sends Letter to Senator Graham Outlining Ambassador Bill Taylor Efforts to Block Witnesses…
Bill Taylor was formerly U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine (’06-’09) and later helped the Obama administration to design the laundry operation providing taxpayer financing to Ukraine in exchange for back-channel payments to U.S. politicians and their families.

Today Rudy Giuliani has released a letter to Senator Lindsey Graham outlining how Bill Taylor has blocked VISA’s for Ukrainian ‘whistle-blowers’ who are willing to testify to the corrupt financial scheme. Unfortunately, Senator Graham, along with dozens of U.S. Senators currently serving, may very well have been a recipient for money through the aforementioned laundry process. So, good luck with the visas.
And I thought I was cynical. Also, Rudy Giuliani Discusses Impeachment, Biden, Ukraine and U.S. Political Corruption…. As Da Caller headlines it, Rudy Giuliani Snaps At Fox News’ Ed Henry: ‘I’m Embarrassing You’

Oh my goodness, Trump actually had his lawyer talk to people! Impeach him! Da Beast,
Trump’s Gatekeeper Put Rudy in Touch With Pompeo: Emails and at WaPoo, Greg Jaffe whines that In Trump’s Washington, the rogue actors are the real players — and the experts are increasingly irrelevant. LA Times asks Will John Bolton fill in the gaps on Ukraine as an impeachment witness? I'm sure they would tout it so, but then, they tout everything as the breakthrough that will take down Trump. Roger Kimball at Spectator USA on The Ukraine blame game
There was never anything in the great Ukrainian quid pro quo. It was props and stagecraft, just as the ‘Russia collusion’ cabaret was a charade. It’s all about as real as The Truman Show, and the actors are beginning to make mistakes, leave inappropriate props lying around, break out of character and forget their lines. As in The Truman Show, it’s time to ‘cue the sun’.

The AP wonders about an Impeachment inquiry crossroads: Keep going or time to vote?. What ever they choose, it will be based on Nancy Pelosi's judgement of what will be best for the Democrats. Matthew Walter at Da Week, Where is Nancy Pelosi on impeachment? Alex Bolton on Da Hill, Trump, GOP skeptical Pelosi will go through with impeachment as Poll finds sharp swing in opposition to impeachment among independents. It would be pretty amusing if, after all this, they couldn't find enough support among House Democrats.

NYT (via Hot Air)  “Tuesday Afternoon Impeachment” Is As Big As “Monday Night Football”.  Alhouse notes, "TV’s impeachment drama is drawing big ratings, but a Democratic debate on MSNBC sank to a viewership low."
The NYT reports.
. . .
But the Democratic candidates' debate on Wednesday night only got "6.6 million tuning in to MSNBC." Maybe the Democrats are better off if we don't see too much of their candidates, but do the ratings for the impeachment hearings suggest that the American voters are eager to get rid of Trump? Obviously not. It's Fox News that's getting the most viewers, and I'm going to presume that choosing to watch the hearings (and analysis) on Fox means that you're hoping to see Trump exonerated. Plenty of people watched on MSNBC too, and I presume they were looking to see guilt, guilt, guilt.
Politico catches Vulnerable Democrats spooked by GOP impeachment ad onslaught. Poor babies. If you strike the king...
Vulnerable Democrats are watching in horror as GOP impeachment attacks deluge their districts back home. And they want a much stronger counteroffensive from their own party and its allies.

Some of those Democrats raised their concerns with party leaders this week as they prepared to leave for Thanksgiving recess, fearing that voters will be bombarded by anti-impeachment ads as families gather around the TV for parades and football, according to multiple lawmakers and aides.
Mollie Hemingway at Da Fed describes How Republicans Won Phase One Of Impeachment
Here’s why things went well for Republicans in phase one of impeachment.

  • It was completely unclear what crime, much less what high crime, Trump was accused of committing.
  • The hearings were boring and complicated.
  • Adam Schiff lacks credibility.
  • Democrats’ witnesses kept making Trump’s case for him.
  • GOP members stayed on message about the unfairness of the proceedings.
  • The media generally overpromised and underachieved.
  • The general wackiness of the Resistance.
but concludes "Impeachment will occur, but on the weakest possible grounds." WSK opines Winning Was Trump’s High Crime and Misdemeanor, "His conflict with his staff over Ukraine was nothing compared with Obama’s decision to leave Iraq."

Rich Lowry at NYPo, Why Democrats’ impeachment push is about to get a lot harder. Because it's all they have. Mark Ellis at PJ Media, Will Romney Vote to Impeach? The Strange Case of Pierre Delecto.

Twitchy notices the WaPoo wondering if  ‘Impeachment will make the president hellbent on the destruction of the civil service’

Yup. Send the whole seat of government to Fargo, North Dakota. Let's find out who's really serious about working for the government.

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