President Trump announced on Sunday (in a tweet, naturally) that he would be calling for the DOJ to investigate the alleged infiltration of his 2016 campaign for political purposes --- he’s talking about the spying here --- and to find out if the Obama administration had anything to do with it.
On Monday, he made good on that, and top officials at the Department of Justice have agreed to put the Inspector General on a review of the FISA application process to see “whether there was any impropriety or political motivation in how the FBI conducted its counterintelligence operation of persons suspected of Russian involvement with the Russian agents who interfered in the 2016 presidential election.” According to the DOJ’s statement, the IG will “consult with the appropriate U.S. attorney” if any evidence of potential criminal conduct is found.
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein had this to say: “If anyone did infiltrate or surveil participants in a presidential campaign for inappropriate purposes, we need to know about it and take action.” Is it just me, or is this a really tepid response, considering the stunning nature of these allegations?
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But once again, Attorney General Jeff Sessions is sitting on the sidelines. (No wonder the President is furious.) Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz has spoken with Sessions about this, and says the AG told him he is completely unwilling to step in. This is just getting ridiculous. Yes, Sessions recused himself from the investigation into the campaign’s alleged ties with Russia (that move actually made some sense, because he personally was involved in Trump’s campaign), but this is something else: an “investigation of the investigation,” and he’s supposed to be our top law enforcement official. Instead, we have a vacuum that’s had to be filled by the second-in-command, Rosenstein, who, unbelievably, is still directing the scope of the Mueller investigation despite YUUUUUGE conflicts of interest. Sessions should have fired him long ago. And if Trump can’t fire Sessions because of the political fallout, Sessions should realize he can’t adequately perform his duties as AG and resign, too.
Something about this is very wrong. And the DOJ investigating itself isn’t going to fix it.
That’s why it may still come down to Congressional oversight to get to the bottom of it. They’ve been pushing for many months to get the FBI and DOJ to let them see unredacted documents that they have the security clearance and the right to see, but recent revelations about ‘infiltration” (spying) seem to have energized House Intelligence Committee chairman Devin Nunes, who suspects there were other government “informants” (spies) at work within the campaign besides the one we know about.
Both Nunes and House Majority Whip Steve Scalise had tough words for the FBI on Sunday. They know the stakes are high and that this is not the time for backing down.
If the DOJ under Rod Rosenstein continues to stonewall (“Sorry, we can’t release that, because it’s part of an ongoing investigation...”), Trump needs to play hardball and just declassify all the documents in question. BOOM, like that! He’s the President, after all; he gets to do it. Also, former FBI agents can speak up and offer valuable insight into how the investigation might have gotten started. Case in point: Clarice Feldman at AMERICAN THINKER has an update that outlines a very interesting possible scenario suggested by former agent Mark Wauck. He says the Democrats may have used the cover of a “preliminary investigation” to gain access to all the NSA data they wanted on political opponents –- at least until Mike Rogers at NSA clamped down, at which point they had to do whatever was necessary to obtain FISA warrants. (He did the timeline, and it works.) You have to get pretty deep into Feldman’s article to find this, but it’s enlightening.
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