Thursday, March 12, 2020

Russiagate: New FISA Passes House

And Democrats and Republicans co-operated a little, which should make you happy or scared, or maybe a little of both. Fox, House passes bipartisan FISA reforms to prevent future 'spying' abuses,   WaPoo, House passes compromise bill on surveillance reform
The House on Wednesday approved legislation that would institute some changes to the government’s surveillance authority while also imposing new requirements on the way the FBI obtains wiretapping warrants in national security investigations following criticism of its monitoring of a Trump campaign adviser in 2016.

The bill also permanently bans a controversial but dormant program that allowed the government to obtain Americans’ phone records in terrorism investigations.

The bipartisan bill — an attempt to satisfy Republicans angry at the FBI’s handling of its Trump campaign investigation and Democrats seeking broader surveillance restructuring — passed by a 278-to-136 vote just two days before lawmakers leave town.

Democrats wanted surveillance changes to enhance privacy, and President Trump’s Republican allies wanted measures to curb what they saw as abuses of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), the 1978 law governing surveillance used in terrorism and espionage investigations.

The legislation now moves to the GOP-controlled Senate, where Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) signaled Wednesday he would move quickly to pass it. But under Senate rules, that process could take several days — perhaps past the Sunday deadline — if opponents refuse to clear procedural roadblocks.

The bill passed Wednesday represents a compromise forged by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (D-Md.) and Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy ­(R-Calif.), after an attempt to move an earlier version stalled.
Capt. Ed, Hot Air, House Freedom Caucus: No Way We’re Supporting This Politician-Protecting FISA Compromise Reform Bill
The failure to hold anyone criminally liable for the falsehoods in the Page warrant may end up being the backbreaker on this effort. What good are reforms when there is no political will to enforce accountability? The FISA law is a key tool in the FBI’s efforts for counter-espionage and counter-terrorism, but if they can’t be trusted to use it legally — and the system can’t be trusted to punish them when they don’t — then there’s a legitimate question as to whether it’s worse in the long run to let it expire.
Via Wombat's  In The Mailbox: 03.11.20, AmCon: Congress Has A Chance To Reform The Patriot Act – But Moderates Want To Water It DownJust the News, House strikes deal to renew FISA, but with significant reforms
Politico reported that President Trump indicated in a meeting last week that he will not approve a FISA extension. He instead wants a bipartisan FISA deal from Congress.

He is encouraging lawmakers to "strike a long-term agreement," the outlet also reported.

But before it reaches Trump's desk it will need to clear both the House and Senate where some lawmakers are urging the president to veto the bill.
Greg Jarrett, still has reasons Why FISA Should Be Abolished! Bad actions should have serious consequences, otherwise the bureaucracy won't learn, Chris Farrell from Judical Watch at Da Caller, Spygate Could Make Watergate Look Like A Third-Rate Burglary. Much bigger but most of the media doesn't care because it favors their side. NewsMax, Dershowitz: I'm Thinking of Suing CNN for Their Lies
Some talking heads went so far as to say that I told the senate that a president could shoot his opponent, or tamper with voting machines, as long as he believed his re-election was in the public interest. Joe Lockhart compared me to Hitler, Stalin, and Mussolini and said my argument would lead to genocide.

A simple truth-check, if CNN had bothered to conduct one, would have shown that I said exactly the opposite of what CNN said I had said: I told the senators — both in my speech and in answers to questions — that if a president did anything that was "in some way illegal" or "corruptly motivated" or that involved "personal pecuniary." benefit, he could be impeached, even if his motive was to help his re-election, which he believed was in the public interest. My point was that if a president did something entirely lawful that was motivated in part by helping his re-election, that mixed motive would not turn a legal act into an impeachable offense.

CNN turned my statement on its head, wrenched a few words out of context while omitting other crucial words, and lied to its viewers. It was as if I had said, "Now let me tell you what I don’t believe: I don’t believe that a president can commit any crime as long as he thinks it will help his re-election. I don’t believe that for a moment."

If CNN then deliberately omitted the first 13 words and the last seven words and just showed me saying that "a president can commit any crime as long as he thinks it will help his re-election," no one would say they were telling the truth.

Nor was this an inadvertent lie. I was reliably advised that the brass at CNN made a deliberate, calculated decision to edit the video by omitting what I said before and after the words they quoted, for the explicit purpose of misleading their viewers.

This is the functional equivalent of doctoring the recording.

They knew exactly what they were doing and they did it with a corrupt motive and malice afterthought. I challenge them to deny it. They won’t, because they know I can prove it.
Also via Wombat's  In The Mailbox: 03.11.20 the Victory Girls rag on as Hunter Biden Worms His Way Out Of Deposition and Brietbart has Hunter Biden to Skip Court Appearance, Cites Coronavirus, Pregnant Wife but it may not matter anymore, as sundance at CTH reports Judge Rejects Hunter Biden Attempt to Stall Deposition – Overall Case May Be Settled…. I wonder how much of that sweet Ukrainian cash that cost.

Josh Hammer at NYPo says Judge’s slap at AG William Barr was shameful politicking. One of the virtues of the Trump era is that it has ripped the masks off.
The judge, who missed his true calling as an MSNBC talking head, wondered aloud whether Barr “made a calculated attempt to influence public discourse” about the ­report “in favor of President Trump” and blasted a “lack of candor,” which he said calls “into question” the ­attorney general’s “credibility.”

The complaint was a rehash of a forgotten anti-Trump drama that should’ve been left forgotten. ­Back in March 2019, Barr released a summary of the Mueller report’s conclusion that there was zero collusion. The left claimed the summary misrepresented Mueller’s full report, but the special counsel subsequently went before Congress and reiterated that core finding.

Walton’s impudent gripe may earn him media plaudits, but the stubborn facts belie its content.

First, it was line prosecutors who redacted the Mueller report, not Barr himself. Second, the redactions were made in consultation with lawyers on Mueller’s special counsel team — which disproves any alleged legerdemain or political intent on Barr’s part.

Most important, a joint statement last May by DOJ spokeswoman Kerri Kupec and special counsel spokesman Peter Carr made clear that there was “no conflict” between the statements made by Barr and Mueller with respect to the underlying legal question at the time: Both publicly stated that Mueller never concluded that he would have found Trump had obstructed justice but for a DOJ guideline against indicting a sitting president. Put simply, Barr and Mueller were in complete lockstep.

The judge has brought shame to the bench by combining disinformation with an overheated, ad-hominem rebuke. Indeed, if there is anyone in this saga who “made a calculated attempt to ­influence public discourse” and demonstrated a remarkable “lack of candor” in doing so, it wasn’t Barr. It was the judge.
Paul Gardiner at AmThink takes on Hillary's statement that she is The Most Investigated Innocent Person in America
A recent report in The Daily Mail quotes the former secretary of state and presidential candidate saying, "I am the most investigated innocent person in America" and "... this is not just politics, this is deep cultural stuff. When I became Secretary of State, I decided to use the server that had been set up for Bill and his former president's office. I did it as a matter of convenience. There was no regulation against it; there was nothing against it. Everybody knew I was doing it because they were all emailing me and I was emailing them and that was hundreds and hundreds of people in government."

In purposely saying there is no regulation against her use of a private email server (in the bathroom of her private residence) for highly classified communications, Mrs. Clinton attempts to excuse her actions or somehow exonerate herself. She purposely overlooks the fact that her actions, as explained herein, are clear, flagrant, prima facie violations of the gross negligence provisions of the Espionage Act.

It should be remembered that just prior to the 2016 presidential election, ex–FBI director James Comey famously and conveniently classified Mrs. Clinton's actions as "extremely careless" rather than grossly negligent, which could and most likely would have made her actions subject to the provisions and penalties of the Espionage Act described herein. Among other things, many people consider Comey's actions a gross miscarriage of justice.

Use of a private email server for classified communications permits the material to be removed or abstracted from its proper, secure government file server. The provisions of the Espionage Act, subsection F, 18 USC 793, state that "an intent to deceive or perform illegal actions regarding the handling of classified government information is not required; gross negligence alone is grounds for prosecution." Penalties allowed under the Espionage Act for gross negligence in handling classified materials include a fine, imprisonment of up to ten years, or both.

In June 2018, columnist Marc Thiessen noted that in 2016, the FBI knew with certainty that hostile actors had in fact gained access to classified information via Mrs. Clinton's emails. According to the inspector general, a special review of the Clinton email investigation in 2017 by the office to the FBI's Inspection Division found that, before James Comey's 2016 statement, "the FBI ... successfully determined classified information was improperly stored and transmitted on Clinton's email server, and classified information was compromised by unauthorized individuals, to include foreign governments or intelligence services, via cyber intrusion or other means."
Lock her up!

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