When I said the information on Bruce Ohr’s testimony was coming out in dribs and drabs, I was not kidding. I had no sooner finished writing one update when we got another drib. A very major drib.
Recall that Ohr testified that there were people at the FBI who knew about his wife’s work for Glenn Simpson at opposition research company Fusion GPS, which was funded by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee, and his back channel communication with British ex-spy, imaginative “dossier” writer and would-be Trump nemesis Christopher Steele –- both before and after Steele was officially considered an acceptable source –- and that behind closed doors he “named names.” Now we’re learning the names.
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE: UPDATE: What we're learning about Bruce Ohr's testimony
Yes, these are mostly FBI names, but it should surprise no one that Robert Mueller’s pit bull and lead attorney in the effort to “get Trump,” the notorious Andrew Weissmann, known for withholding exculpatory evidence in other cases, is also on that list. In other words, when Steele and Ohr were making notes about “S.C.,” they WERE referring to “special counsel” (not, as I had joked, “shifty Congressman” Adam Schiff, although I wouldn’t be surprised if he were in the loop as well). Thanks to Ohr, Weissmann knew that Steele’s flights of fantasy were being used to justify the investigation into Trump, and apparently that was just fine with him. In other words, the lead investigator on Mueller’s legal team is complicit in a fraud. Weissmann knew what was going on with Steele even before joining the special counsel team; ironically, when he was first put in the loop, he was chief of the DOJ’s criminal fraud division.
So, let’s see what was going on at the FBI. We’ve learned that then-deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe was being briefed by Ohr about what was going on with Steele’s dirt-digging. Another name: Lisa Page, McCabe’s legal assistant at the time, who had referred to “Andy’s office” in her text about the “insurance policy.” She was also office girlfriend to FBI head of counterintelligence Peter Strzok, who was conveniently in charge of both the Hillary “investigation” and the Trump/Russia probe. See how incestuous this all is? By the time you read this, President Trump will have no doubt indulged himself by raging in a well-justified tweetstorm.
Ohr had failed to disclose to the Justice Department the money his wife Nellie was making from her work at Fusion GPS, and he can be prosecuted for not filling out those official forms correctly. (Catherine Herridge does report that someone at the DOJ was aware but does not provide the identify.) According to FOX News legal analyst Gregg Jarrett –- who is surely already writing a blockbuster sequel to his new bestselling book THE RUSSIA HOAX –- Ohr could be charged with several crimes: honest services fraud, federal gratuity, federal bribery and making a false statement. The Justice Department was not informed of his wife’s work, according to Ohr’s testimony, but numerous people at the FBI knew all about it. Nellie Ohr had been hired specifically to work on the anti-Trump material.
Now we understand why the FBI has been refusing to turn over documents to congressional investigators for soooooooooo long. This is damning.
According to Herridge, the committees are still trying to nail down Ohr’s activities in spreading the dossier, which was really just a piece of slanderous, unverified “oppo research,” certainly not anything that would ever stand up court (and the FBI knew it ), but that was used to dupe a court into granting a warrant to spy on Carter Page, a Trump campaign associate. To get the warrant, they actually accused him of being a Russian agent. No charges have since been filed against Carter Page.
Remember the memo released by Devin Nunes earlier this year? Nunes was savaged for many of the details included in that memo, including the part about the FBI interviewing Ohr and determining that Steele and Ohr had been maintaining contact, and that Steele was determined to keep Trump out of the White House. This new testimony is a vindication.
According to Herridge, there are handwritten notes by Ohr from two weeks after the election that list Strzok, Page and another FBI agent –- perhaps the attendees of a meeting –- and say, “No prosecution yet. Push case ahead on M. May go back to Chris.” “M” appears to be a reference to former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, while “Chris” is likely Christopher Steele, whose services were terminated (at least officially) by the FBI that same month for lying and leaking to the media.
Herridge also mentions that Weissman met as early as April of 2017 with reporters to talk about Manafort. A lot was brewing around that time; in May, the President fired FBI Director James Comey, Comey deliberately relayed to the media his personal notes offering “impressions” of conversations he’d had with the President (this was actually a leak of FBI material), and his friend Mueller was appointed to head the special counsel to investigate Trump.
House Democrats don’t care about any of this, and after Ohr’s testimony on Tuesday they supplied reporters with a “fact check” defending him as a career civil servant, conveniently glossing over the stunning details. They maintain that his outreach to Steele was not prohibited or unlawful. Read this, and you’ll know just what is going to happen to this investigation if the Democrats get back in charge. They’ll clamp the lid back down on it so fast, all we’ll see is a blur.
Of course, if Ohr and his wife had been pro-Trump, sworn to do whatever it took to get him INTO office, their activities would be roundly condemned by the Democrats and they’d be facing serious charges that could lead to years in prison. Hey, they could get Andrew Weissmann to prosecute, so any evidence tending to exonerate them would be buried. We all know that’s the way it would go.
It’s hard not to be a cynic these days. For a hefty (but entertaining) dose of cynicism, check out Kurt Schlichter’s new column/rant, “The Rule Of Law Is A Sick Joke.” He echoes the view of many of my readers who don’t expect anything to happen to Hillary or to any of the people who have abused their power. No, I don’t think we’ll get an old-style Hollywood ending, with the good guys triumphing and the bad guys getting what they deserve. But at least we’re exposing the injustice, and that’s a necessary first step.