7

Fishing Expedition

Federal District Court Judge T.S. Eliss III, a Reagan appointee, gave Special Prosecutor Mueller a hard time in Court today by stating the obvious:

 

“I don’t see what relationship this indictment has with anything the special counsel is authorized to investigate,” U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III in the Eastern District of Virginia said.

At a tense hearing at the federal courthouse in Alexandria, Virginia, the judge said Mueller should not have “unfettered power” in his Russia probe and that the charges against Manafort did not arise from the investigation into Moscow’s alleged meddling in the 2016 U.S. election.

“It’s unlikely you’re going to persuade me the special counsel has unfettered power to do whatever he wants,” said Ellis, who was appointed to the bench by Republican President Ronald Reagan.

Manafort is facing charges in both Virginia and Washington. The Virginia case charges him with offenses including tax and bank fraud.

The other case in Washington accuses him of conspiring to launder money and failing to register as a foreign agent when he lobbied for the pro-Russia Ukrainian government.

 

None of the charges relate, however, to Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign or possible collusion with Russia. Trump has denied any collusion.

Manafort’s attorney Kevin Downing has argued that the charges must dismissed because the FBI investigation dates back to 2014, and therefore did not arise from Mueller’s probe.

The bulk of Friday’s questions by the judge were aimed squarely at Michael Dreeben, the deputy solicitor general who is currently working in Mueller’s office.

 

Go here to read the rest.  There never was anything to the allegation that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russian government.  Mueller has thus been on  a fishing expedition for more than a year and a half in which he prosecutes former members of the Trump campaign in hopes that, in return for leniency involving offensives unrelated to the Trump campaign, they will reveal something criminal about Trump.  This stinks to high heaven and Judge Ellis realizes that.

2

The Russians Were Coming! The Russians Were Coming!

The Mueller investigation has labored mightily lo these many months and brought forth indictments against 13 Russians, none of whom are in custody, and three Russian entities:

 

 

 

A federal grand jury has indicted 13 Russian nationals and three Russian entities for alleged illegal interference in the 2016 presidential elections, during which they strongly supported the candidacy of Donald Trump, special counsel Robert Mueller‘s office said Friday.

The indictment says that a Russian organization called the Internet Research Agency sought to wage “information warfare” against the United States and to “sow discord” in the American political system by using fictitious American personas and social media platforms and other Internet-based media.

Internet Research Agency, a so-called “troll farm” based in St. Petersburg, Russia,” was allegedly controlled by a defendant in the indictment named Yevgeny Progozhin, who is a wealthy associate of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The indictment said the Internet Research Agency was registered with the Russian government as a corporate entity in 2013, and by May 2014 the group’s strategy included interfering with the 2016 U.S. presidential election, with the stated goal of “spread[ing] distrust towards the candidates and the political system in general,” the indictment said.

The indictment details an extremely sophisticated conspiracy in which defendants traveled to the United States to conduct research, employed specialists to fine-tune social media posts to “ensure they appeared authentic,” and stole real people’s identities to purchase online ads.

By early to mid-2016 the defendants were “supporting the presidential campaign of then-candidate Donald J. Trump … and disparaging Hillary Clinton,” the eight-count indictment charges.

The defendants also engaged in operations to “denigrate” Republican primary opponents of Trump such as senators Ted Cruz of Texas and Florida’s Marco Rubio, the indictment said.

“Some Defendants, posing at U.S. persons and without revealing their Russian association, communicated with unwitting individuals associated with the Trump Campaign and with other political activists to seek to coordinate political activities,” the indictment claims.

Foreigners are barred from spending money to try to influence the outcome of a federal election.

As part of their efforts, the defendants also allegedly encouraged minority groups to either not vote for in the election or to vote for a third-party candidate.

Both actions would have hurt Clinton, who received significant support from minority voters.

And after the election of Trump as president in November 2016, the defendants used fake personas to organize and coordinate political rallies in support of Trump, while also doing the same to create rallies “protesting the results” of the election, the indictment said.

Go here to read the rest.  That the Russians, and the Soviets before them, have long sought to meddle in our elections I have no doubt.  The American Communist Party was the Communist party outside of the Soviet Union most slavish to the interests of Moscow, for example, and they long had a substantial impact on the left wing of the Democrat Party.  However, that such meddling has ever influenced the outcome of a Presidential election I see no evidence of, especially in 2016 when the raw incompetence of the Clinton campaign, “Let’s call half the nation deplorables!”  “We don’t need to campaign in Wisconsin or Michigan!”, is sufficient to explain how she lost to a first time candidate she outspent two to one, and who was dragging a laundry list of baggage that would have sunk any other candidate.  The operation has the feel of a Russian junket:  “Da Mr. President, we are having a huge impact on the Americanski election.  I just need to go to Miami Beach three more times.  Could I have another Americanski $200,000.00 to blow, I mean spend, on the operation while I am there?  During Spring Break I can contact Americanski youth and foster their disenchantment with the Americanski political system!”.  The Russians clearly did not get value for their money, unlike for example the bribes they paid the Clintons in the  Uranium One scandal.

However, thanks to the hysterical refusal of the Left in this country to accept the election results in 2016, spurred on by Hillary Clinton’s adamant refusal to take responsibility for being the worst major party candidate for President in US history, Putin reaped the bonanza of seeing this country, at least in the mainstream media, being consumed with the non-story of Russian influence on the 2016 Presidential Election for more than a year.  This all warrants the pen of a Mark Twain to write the ludicrous chronicle of this farce.

 

11

Missing Texts

 

 

 

Well, isn’t this special:

 

The Justice Department has turned over to Congress additional text messages involving an FBI agent who was removed from special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigative team following the discovery of derogatory comments about President Trump.

But the department also said in a letter to lawmakers that its record of messages sent to and from the agent, Peter Strzok, was incomplete because the FBI, for technical reasons, had been unable to preserve and retrieve about five months’ worth of communications.

New text messages highlighted in a letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray by Sen. Ron Johnson, the Republican chairman of the Senate’s Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, are from the spring and summer of 2016 and involve discussion of the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server. They reference Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s decision to accept the FBI’s conclusion in that case and a draft statement that former FBI Director James Comey had prepared in anticipation of closing out the Clinton investigation without criminal charges.

The FBI declined to comment Sunday. CBS News Justice Reporter Paula Reid reported Sunday that the Strzok texts have been delivered and are expected to be made public via Congress.

In addition to the communications already made public, the Justice Department on Friday provided Johnson’s committee with 384 pages of text messages, approximately 9,000 texts, exchanged between FBI employees Lisa Page and Strzok.

Strzok, a veteran counterintelligence agent who also worked the Clinton email case, was reassigned last summer from the team investigating ties between Russia and Mr. Trump’s Republican presidential campaign after Mueller learned he had exchanged politically charged text messages — many anti-Trump in nature — with an FBI lawyer also detailed to the group. The lawyer, Lisa Page, left Mueller’s team before the text messages were discovered.

The Justice Department last month produced for reporters and Congress hundreds of text messages that the two had traded before becoming part of the Mueller investigation. Many focused on their observations of the 2016 election and included discussions of the Clinton investigation. Republican lawmakers have contended the communication reveals the FBI and the Mueller team to be politically tainted and biased against Mr. Trump — assertions Wray has flatly rejected.

But, according to the letter, the FBI told the department that its system for retaining text messages sent and received on bureau phones had failed to preserve communications between Strzok and Page over a five-month period between Dec. 14, 2016, and May 7, 2017. DOJ says many FBI-provided Samsung 5 mobile devices did not capture texts during that time. The explanation for the gap was “misconfiguration issues related to rollouts, provisioning, and software upgrades that conflicted with the FBI’s collection capabilities.” 

 

Go here to read the rest.  Two observations.

  1.  Is this high school?  These are two important FBI officials engaged in an adulterous relationship and they seem to have spent a large portion of their time texting each other.  How much of this was done on the Federal dime?  How many other teens in adult bodies are employed by the Federal government?
  2.  Aren’t the missing texts too convenient for words?  The explanation sounds completely phony to me.  Time to subpoena the NSA and see if they have copies of the texts.
15

A Partisan Witch Hunt Above the Law

The more we learn about FBI Section Leader Peter Strzok, the married agent dismissed in August 2017 from the Russia investigation by Robert Mueller after the discovery of anti-Trump emails, by a DOJ internal investigation of the Clinton e-mails investigation, Strzok exchanged with his alleged mistress Lisa Page, a top FBI lawyer on the staff of Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe, and his central role in the Clinton e-mail investigations and the Michael Flynn-Russia investigation, the more the current Mueller investigation looks like a partisan witch hunt.

 

 

 

 

 

 

And Mueller and the FBI both dragged their feet on sharing key info about all this with Congress.

Including the news that Strzok was the one who changed then-FBI chief Jim Comey’s draft language on Clinton’s use of that private server from “grossly negligent” to “extremely careless” in the final version.

That’s huge, because the statute specifies that gross negligence in the handling of classified info is itself a crime, whatever the intent — though Comey declared that Clinton shouldn’t face prosecution precisely because she had no “intent” to break the law.

Strzok also conducted the FBI interviews of Clinton and her top aides, Cheryl Mills and Huma Abedin, in the e-mail probe.

More, he was reportedly one of the major FBI figures urging investigations on the basis of the “Steele dossier” of Russian-sourced scurrilous anti-Trump allegations, which we now know was commissioned by the Clinton campaign.

More, he signed the documents that opened the ensuing “collusion” probe. And he led the FBI interview of Gen. Mike Flynn, in which Flynn told the lies that eventually forced him out as Trump’s national security adviser, and for which he’s now pleaded guilty in a deal with Mueller.

Meanwhile, Mills and Abedin’s testimony in their interviews has been shown false in one major regard: Contrary to their denials, each had been well aware of Clinton’s private server — they had to deal with the office fallout whenever it went down. Unlike Flynn, though, they never faced charges for lying to federal investigators.

Go here to read the rest.  It should be noted that it was not revealed by Mueller as to why Strzok was dismissed from the investigation until the day after Michael Flynn on Friday of last week entered a plea of guilty to lying in the non-taped interview conducted by Strzok and another FBI agent.  This all stinks to high Heaven, and it appears that the fix was in regarding all the highly political investigations in which Mr. Strzok, the Zelig of the FBI, was involved.  That whirring sound you hear is J. Edgar Hoover, who, whatever you could say against him, strove to keep the FBI free from being a political tool of Presidents, in his grave.  The Deep State is not a right wing fantasy but is rather a reality that poses a real threat to American democracy and our first civil right:  the right to rule ourselves.

 

Strangers of his counsel, hirelings of his pay,
These shall deal our Justice: sell—deny—delay.

Rudyard Kipling

 

4

The FBI Swamp

Instapundit, Glenn Reynolds, brings us the news of just how tainted the FBI has become:

 

SO THE FBI SUPERVISOR WHO WAS TEXTING ABOUT HOW MUCH HE HATED TRUMP is the one who interviewed Mike Flynn. “A supervisory special agent who is now under scrutiny after being removed from Robert Mueller’s Special Counsel’s Office for alleged bias against President Trump also oversaw the bureau’s interviews of embattled former National Security advisor Michael Flynn, this reporter has learned. Flynn recently pled guilty to one-count of lying to the FBI last week. . . . Strzok was removed from his role in the Special Counsel’s Office after it was discovered he had made disparaging comments about President Trump in text messages between him and his alleged lover FBI attorney Lisa Page, according to the New York Times and Washington Post, which first reported the stories. Strzok is also under investigation by the Department of Justice Inspector General for his role in Hillary Clinton’s email server and the ongoing investigation into Russia’s election meddling. On Saturday, the House Intelligence Committee’s Chairman Devin Nunes chided the Justice Department and the FBI for not disclosing why Strzok had been removed from the Special Counsel three months ago, according to a statement given by the Chairman.”

This stinks to high heaven. But wait, there’s more involving shady FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe:

According to another source, with direct knowledge of the Jan. 24 interview, McCabe had contacted Flynn by phone directly at the White House. White House officials had spent the “earlier part of the week with the FBI overseeing training and security measures associated with their new roles so it was no surprise to Flynn that McCabe had called,” the source said.

McCabe told Flynn “some agents were heading over (to the White House) but Flynn thought it was part of the routine work the FBI had been doing and said they would be cleared at the gate,” the source said.

“It wasn’t until after they were already in (Flynn’s) office that he realized he was being formally interviewed. He didn’t have an attorney with him,” they added.

Go here to read the rest and the comments.  Deputy Director Andrew McCabe’s wife was running for a Virginia Senate seat as a Democrat in 2015 and received 675,000 in campaign funds from the Clintons’ old hatchet man Terry McCauliffe, then Governor of Virginia, and the Democrat Party of Virginia.  In spite of this McCabe did not recuse himself from the Clinton e-mail investigation.  Peter Strzok, the anti-Trump FBI agent, was instrumental in the Clinton e-mail investigation and purportedly helped convince Comey that Clinton should not be indicted.  It would be fair to say that if the FBI were directly controlled by the Democrat Party, it is hard to see how these “investigations” would have been conducted much differently.