And the rats are beginning to turn on each other, as the water flooding the hold drives them to abandon the sinking ship.
A potential rift is emerging between James Comey and John Brennan over who pushed to include information from the unverified Steele dossier in an intelligence community assessment of Russian interference in the 2016 election.
Comey, a former FBI director, sent an email to subordinates in late 2016 indicating Brennan, a former CIA director, wanted to include materials from the dossier in the intelligence community assessment, known as the ICA, Fox News reported.
A former CIA official speaking on Brennan’s behalf is disputing the assertion. The former official told Fox that Brennan and James Clapper, a former director of national intelligence, opposed Comey’s push to include Steele dossier information in the ICA.
The dispute pits two former intelligence community officials against each other at a time when the Justice Department is investigating how government agencies like the FBI and CIA handled the dossier, which former British spy Christopher Steele authored and the Clinton campaign and Democratic National Committee funded.
Now, I know a lot of folks have become frustrated with the seeming lack of progress towards visiting justice on these cocksure, despicable Deep State malefactors. I’ve struggled with that some myself. Bill’s complaint is a representative sample:
We’ve been groaning under investigations for more than two years, ever more complicated, ever more minutely focused, ever more opaque. We’re drenched with leaks, hammered with interpretation, battered by punditry. If I didn’t know better, I’d think the entire investigatory freak show was designed to destroy any interest in any of it among normal people who work for a living.
We know who the bad guys are, and we know what they did. No more dancing Graham 2.0s, please, with tantalizing promises to “declassify” stuff we’ve known about for a long time. Not one single miscreant has faced a judge yet. The only people actually jailed have been those swept up on ancillary process matters in service to the Witch Hunt For Trump. It’s time to change that.
There are those who say Comey will be the biggest target, but I see no reason why Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama should not at least face the judicial process, even if they should manage to skate the penalties they really should pay.
But all the rest – Comey, all his gang of corrupt leftist thugs, Clapper and his CIA mob, Brennan, and all the other named miscreants now need to face a hell of a lot more than shame. They need to be sitting in the ultimate perjury trap – an American courtroom passing judgment on their crimes.
Agreed, more or less. Then again, though, I have to offer a mild admonishment: PATIENCE, people. The investigations do FEEL endless, but the truth is the ones we’ve been “groaning under for more than two years” were the PHONY ones; the REAL ones, looking into the origins of the Swamp’s myriad illegalities for specific, actionable offenses, are only just beginning.
Yes, as Bill says, we DO pretty much know who the bad guys are and what they did. But in truth, those are opinions. Indictments, trials, and prison terms aren’t doled out with opinion as their basis, however firmly they may be buttressed by readily-observable reality. That’s why we have investigations in the first place: to provide the legal hook on which to hang criminal charges.
Investigations are but the first step in a process, which can indeed drag agonizingly on. The offenses apparently committed against not only Trump but the American republic itself are grave enough that we can count on the process here being a slow, deliberate one. Which, that ain’t necessarily a bad thing.
Barr looks like a serious man, seriously intent on getting to the bottom of what now looks like being the greatest scandal in our history. As it happens, one of his earliest acts as AG was to appoint another sober, judicious, and yes, serious man—US Attorney John Durham, who has already shown integrity and bull-terrier perseverance in a previous confrontation with the abominably corrupt FBI—a move clearly indicating that Barr suspected from Day One that his investigation was likely to result in indictments and judicial proceedings.
So let’s not throw up our hands just yet, folks. Let the process, long-delayed but moving along at last in an encouraging direction, continue on to its conclusion. Barr, Durham, et al may well flinch in the end from unleashing the kind of profound upheaval likely to come of all this to conclude with a whimper instead of a bang, although the early indications seem to foretell that they won’t. Either way, there’ll be time enough then to sharpen the pitchforks, light the torches, and boil the tar.
Update! I ain’t the only one who sees Barr’s appointment of skull-cracker Durham as a pretty solid tell.
“If I were the Democrats I would be quite worried,” former Deputy Assistant Attorney General John Yoo told Fox News’s Laura Ingraham Monday night.
And the reason why is, by appointing a U.S. attorney, Attorney General Barr is essentially signaling that he thinks it’s possible that criminal violations occurred in the start of the whole investigation into any kind of Trump-Russian collusion.
As Judge Barr said, there is already an inspector general investigation that’s going to come to a conclusion. That’s what you would do if you were just interested in reforming the way the department does things, the way decisions were made.
But you wouldn’t go with a U.S. Attorney like Durham, someone of his stature, unless the attorney general thinks actually something criminal might have happened, that someone might have violated the law, that there might have been malfeasance, that people at the FBI or the justice department were acting out of partisan motives, not just out of incompetence or stupidity or they were duped by the Russians or Steele or the English or by the Clinton campaign.
So if you are a Democrat, I think you would be really worried to see the appointment of a career prosecutor like this.
Most conservatives have a wait-and-see attitude because we know that Washington takes care of Washington, first, last, and always.
After watching Hillary not only go unindicted but had the FBI destroy the evidence as well, I realize Comey is about as high as they will go.
Still, I believe President Trump will exact a price for this that is high enough to prevent another attempted coup.
But we shall see.
That we shall. Thomas Lifson examines another angle:
Eric Felten noticed something already on the public record last October: that Durham already was investigating leaks to the media from the FBI. This means that at least seven months before his role was revealed, and months before William Barr took office, Durham was on the case. The revelation came not from a leak, but from testimony by James A. Baker, the FBI’s general counsel under James Comey.
The fact that this was kept secret so long, even in the face of this admission slipping out and remaining unnoticed, suggests that the Durham investigation — and maybe Huber’s too — is doing exactly what effective prosecutors do: keeping grand jury proceedings secret, applying pressure to witnesses to sing, maybe offering deals for lighter prosecution and sentence recommendations if they implicate higher-ups, and going for convictions by trial juries, not in the court of public opinion.
I have long believed that the only reason a man like Barr, who was earning millions of dollars a year as a DC lawyer at the very top of his profession, could be lured back into the snake pit of DC politics under Trump would be his devotion to the integrity of our legal/judicial system. If he were a cynic just interested in preserving the establishment that let him succeed so mightily, why not just stay where we was? He had to know that taking on the task of rescuing the system from its abusers would lead to the sort of vilification he now is enduring.
Yep. Patience, people.