Glenn Simpson of Fusion GPS did plead the Fifth instead of answering questions before Congress on Tuesday.  The James Baker and Nellie Ohr appearances on Thursday and Friday, respectively, are still on, at least at this writing, but deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein refused to testify last week.  And the FISA warrant to surveil former Trump campaign associate Carter Page, the last renewal of which was signed by Rosenstein, is still buried in a lead-lined titanium vault six miles beneath the surface of the Earth.

Odd that Rosenstein, as the (practically speaking) acting attorney general, has been the one blocking the release of the FISA warrant when it’s his very own signature at the bottom of it.  This is part of the enormous conflict of interest that should have kept him far away from the supervision of this case.  In other words, if anyone should have been recused, it’s him.

According to House Intelligence Committee chairman Devin Nunes, even though Inspector General Michael Horowitz was appointed by President Trump to sort this mess out, congressional oversight committees remain frustrated at not getting the documents they have demanded.  Rosenstein is apparently still a part of the decision-making process regarding release of the FISA warrants and other materials, and he should not be.  That’s especially true when it comes to the 20-page FISA renewal signed by Rosenstein himself, which happens to be the document Congress is most focused on obtaining.

On Tuesday, Tucker Carlson asked Rep. Nunes what would happen if some member of Congress just flat-out took it upon himself to finally put the information out there, risking serious legal jeopardy by saying, “You know, I think as an American that you have the right to see this.”  As the process has dragged out over months and months, I’ve wondered that very same thing myself, and I’ll bet you have, too.  Nunes pointed out that it’s one thing to talk about this on the floor of the House, but members of Congress don’t HAVE the actual documents to show as physical evidence.  Those documents are being closely held by the Justice Department and FBI, I assume in the aforementioned lead-lined titanium vault, along with anything else that they hope never sees the light of day, such as any information that incriminates Hillary Clinton and/or their “investigation” of her.  

As for Glenn Simpson and the Democrats he worked for, we know –- even before anything else is declassified –- that they were the ones “colluding” with Russia.  As Nunes describes it, information Simpson got through Christopher Steele’s dossier was fed to the FBI through various sources.  Simpson, Steele and others shopped it to the media as well.  Importantly, Simpson was meeting with the FBI long before he told Congress he had done so, according to Bruce Ohr’s emails.  That’s surely why he pleaded the Fifth this week rather than dig himself any deeper.

Incidentally, it’s sadly true that Bruce Ohr is still at the Justice Department, though not in the high position he held during the time in question.  Trump tweeted emphatically about this on Tuesday, asking, “Can this really be so?????”  Yes, he used five question marks, and I can’t say that I blame him.      


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Simpson’s lawyer, Joshua Levy, had this to say to reporters after leaving Tuesday’s hearing:  “This committee would make Sen. Joseph McCarthy proud.  Like Sen. McCarthy, this committee has largely conducted its business through secret, confidential interviews and depositions, binding witnesses and their counsels to silence while the members walk outside to all of you, the media, and the public, and selectively leak from those interviews to tell you what they want you to hear.”

Where to start?  Invoking Sen. McCarthy’s name certainly seems like a desperation measure, because these hearings are nothing like the broad-based anti-Communist “witch hunts” of the 1950s.  Actually, I’d liken the McCarthy hearings much more to what Justice Brett Kavanaugh went through during his Senate confirmation, where anyone could make an accusation with no evidence whatsoever and the accused was assumed to be guilty until proven innocent.  That’s how the McCarthy hearings were conducted; it was “You’ve been accused of being a Communist, so now you're obligated to prove to us that you aren’t one."

And, Mr. Levy, no one “selectively leaks” worse than Democratic committee members like Adam Schiff and friends (who, by the way, dear voters, will be running the show if Democrats take Congress a few short weeks from now).  The Republicans hold no monopoly on microphones and cameras once hearings adjourn.  Also, some of the hearings can’t be public because the questions involve materials that still haven’t been declassified, and whose fault is that, Mr. Levy?  Finally, if all the hearings were public and televised in glorious HD, you lawyers would just fume about that instead, calling it a circus and saying their clients were being unfairly put on display.  So enough with the complaints.

I’d much rather speak of a very different McCarthy, one of our go-to legal experts, Andrew C. McCarthy, who presents a very interesting timeline that connects FISA surveillance and the Steele dossier with a media blitz designed to further the “Russia” narrative and help Hillary.  Quite ingenious, really, especially considering they assumed it would never be exposed.  Here’s the gist:

August 2016 –- Strzok and Page have that meeting in “Andy’s office” to talk about the “insurance policy” against Trump being President.

July-September 2016 –- The Steele dossier claims that the Trump campaign was complicit in Russian hacking to interfere with our election.  (Actually, I might start the timeline with this; it sets the stage.)

August 2016 –-  Then-CIA chief John Brennan tells Sen. Harry Reid that according to intelligence sources (really just the dossier), the Russians were interfering in our election to help Trump.

September 2016 –- Fusion GPS, which commissioned the Steele dossier, ORGANIZES PRESS BRIEFINGS for Steele to leak that the Trump campaign (through Carter Page) has been complicit in Russia’s hacking plot against our election.

September 2016 –- Journalist Michael Isikoff, after being briefed by Steele, REPORTS that Reid was demanding that the FBI investigate intelligence reports (again, really just the dossier) that the Trump campaign was colluding with Russia.

September 2016 –- Perkins Coie (in other words, Clinton) attorney Michael Sussman meets with FBI general counsel James Baker to convey information (again, from the dossier) about Russia’s interference in the election.  

October 2016 --- The DOJ/FBI obtain their FISA warrant to spy on Carter Page, stating in their application that the FBI believes the Trump campaign has been coordinating with Russia to interfere with the election.
  
As you can see, all of this, including the leaks to the press that were supposedly about intelligence, stem from that “salacious and unverified” dossier.  We’ve had to sort of reverse-engineer their plan to figure out how it was done, but now we’ve just about got it.  With or without Glenn Simpson's testimony.

https://www.nationalreview.com/corner/the-mccarthy-report-looks-at-fisa-surveillance-and-the-clinton-media-blitz/

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Comments 1-14 of 14

  • Rodney black

    10/18/2018 05:17 PM

    Why is this hearing so top secret kick rosentein to the curb alo g with sessions and the file charges its thd same way with the irs and lois lerner whos getting a large retirment monthly these people need to pay a price ty rodney black

  • Rodney black

    10/18/2018 05:16 PM

    Why is this hearing so top secret kick rosentein to the curb alo g with sessions and the file charges its thd same way with the irs and lois lerner whos getting a large retirment monthly these people need to pay a price ty rodney black

  • Debbie Brown

    10/17/2018 05:52 PM

    Mike, I would really like to hear Some political person speak as to WHY the republicans (and I am one!!) Refuse to consider leaving Social security and Medicare alone and look at cutting Their Own "Entitlements" like exorbident salaries and benefits, as well as lifelong income when They "retire"!!
    I am Not trying to be ugly! I Really would like to understand the reasoning!!

  • Cheryl Lindsey

    10/17/2018 01:59 PM

    Two years of our hard earned tax dollars are paying for this Russian collusion investigation which has been a sham from the beginning. Mueller’s real purpose, I think, has been to draw out this investigation until the midterms and probably to cover up any tracks the Obama admin left behind. All of this has been at our expense. Who knew that we were living in a police state during the Obama years and perhaps even now since some of the same characters involved in the fake dossier like Bruce Ohr are still working. I apologize to Mr. Mueller in advance if this is not the case but it certainly seems that this investigation has gone on so long to the point that we are suspicious. I do hope that this is over soon because I am becoming weary of the DEMOcratic Party and their seemingly strong desire to DEMO our laws, our constitution, our freedoms and our Christian values.

  • Lawrence E. Foster

    10/17/2018 12:55 PM

    I can't wait for the new AG to be appointed after the mid-terms (when Trump should have a solid majority, and no trouble getting a new AG confirmed). I am hoping the new AG conducts a series of 4 am raids on the homes of Simpson, the Ohrs, Rosenstein and others, frog-marches them off to jail while FOX News films them, and gets a tame judge to hold them without bail as flight risks. (Maybe throw Mueller in there too as a co-conspirator). Then bring them into jail in their orange jailhouse jumpsuits with hands and legs shackled.

  • Ronald J Bangert

    10/17/2018 11:31 AM

    Mike,
    Can you clarify to your readers how Democrats in particular, or anyone, can skirt being questioned by a congressional committee making inquiries into present allegations, plead the 5th? The committee is making inquiries, and under our Constitution, Congress has the authority! Where are the lawsuits? Where are contempt charges?

    The left continues to legislate outside of Congress! Forget about the bench! The only time I saw someone plead the 5th was in the movies, always a Mobster type. Any analogy?


    Thanks

  • Carol Fraser

    10/17/2018 10:58 AM

    Mr. President,
    Declassify those documents!
    (The results might be as enlightening as taking down the Berlin Wall.)

  • Lisa Ford

    10/17/2018 10:53 AM

    Why can't someone put their foot down & scream ENOUGH! UNLOCK THE VAULT & GIVE US WHAT WE WANT NOW!!!!! Catch that, 5 of them. Did all these over paid politicians all go to school to learn how to play these games. I swear a group of good ol'country boys could get it done. And maybe that's what we could use in Washington. Honest good ol'country boys, that respect folks & help. Not hurt people & throw them under buses.

  • Stephen Russell

    10/17/2018 10:37 AM

    Tire of this endless Evading Justice by this DC bunch, End this, prosecute, need New AG.
    Why keep Rosenstien on?? For what?? Hes blocking Your agenda Mr President.
    End this DC charade, Watergate ended faster than this back then (pre Internet).

  • Curtis Hakes

    10/17/2018 10:36 AM

    Bible

    It’s time to get ready!
    Prepared to be called up
    Be on alert.
    And attempted coup is here
    Defend the Constitution and the word of God !
    Vote as your life depends on it
    Justice is in Gods hands
    His orders are true and just.
    Use prayer as an offense of weapon
    and your sword the word of God.
    He is calling us to arms to war against the evil one!
    God is calling to his righteous ones.
    To listen up give him your ear.
    The joy of the Lord will sustain you in battle !
    Psalm 94 , Psalm 91 , Revelation 17;14

  • Curtis Hakes

    10/17/2018 10:36 AM

    Bible

    It’s time to get ready!
    Prepared to be called up
    Be on alert.
    And attempted coup is here
    Defend the Constitution and the word of God !
    Vote as your life depends on it
    Justice is in Gods hands
    His orders are true and just.
    Use prayer as an offense of weapon
    and your sword the word of God.
    He is calling us to arms to war against the evil one!
    God is calling to his righteous ones.
    To listen up give him your ear.
    The joy of the Lord will sustain you in battle !
    Psalm 94 , Psalm 91 , Revelation 17;14

  • Curtis Hakes

    10/17/2018 10:35 AM

    Bible

    It’s time to get ready!
    Prepared to be called up
    Be on alert.
    And attempted coup is here
    Defend the Constitution and the word of God !
    Vote as your life depends on it
    Justice is in Gods hands
    His orders are true and just.
    Use prayer as an offense of weapon
    and your sword the word of God.
    He is calling us to arms to war against the evil one!
    God is calling to his righteous ones.
    To listen up give him your ear.
    The joy of the Lord will sustain you in battle !
    Psalm 94 , Psalm 91 , Revelation 17;14

  • Kendra Strecker

    10/17/2018 10:05 AM

    I think Dr. Phil's line "those who have NOTHING to hide, hide NOTHING" sums it all up..

  • Vernon Thompson

    10/17/2018 09:58 AM

    Note to NV Legislators a few months ago
    I know that you will not like what I have to say but I would encourage you to read the following.
    Congressional approval is at an all-time low and it is hard earned and richly deserved. When I look at Congress I see a group of over-paid, over-perked, over protected, and under-performing legislators who refuse to work to resolve issues most important to the electorate. They pass laws and exempt themselves or create carve outs. They have a secret slush fund using taxpayer monies to cover their misdeeds and cause the complainers to be quiet using NDAs. Is that the basis of blackmail to control voting? What is referred to as the “Swamp” has taken on an odor of the “Sewer or Cesspool.” Which brings me to one of the sources of my irritation and contempt for your collective performance – the Congressional Investigating Committees who consistently produce nothing of value!
    If I were Franken, Conyers, Kihuen or any other member of Congress accused of anything, I would rush to the Ethics Committees based on their past performance. The track record over the last century is that if you want to cover up misdeeds go to the Ethics Committee, they will bury it for you.
    Take a hard look at all of the Investigating Committees over the last decade and give me an example where they found wrongdoing and someone was held to account. IT HASN”T HAPPENED!
    Take my favorite example of ineptitude, the Congressional Oversight Committee and the IRS Targeting Investigation. Here is the challenge! Go pull CSPAN Videos of the Committee Hearings. You will see in living color why nothing has been accomplished in years. The two Parties choose up sides before the hearings ever start. One side tries to ask questions that will uncover facts about the subject at hand. The other side asks softball questions, sympathizes with the witnesses, attacks their counterparts and whines about witch-hunts, monkey trials and waste of money, etc. It matters not what the subject is. It is as if the Ranking Member was sent there solely to insure no one discovers that the Whitehouse was involved - he did a great job in the case of IRS Targeting!
    Subpoenas are issued and largely ignored. When data are submitted they are incomplete or over redacted to the point that no useful evidence is presented. Witnesses like the IRS Commissioner lie about the status of obtaining records. Oh, By the way! Records have been destroyed and no one is held to account. Key IRS employee, Lois Lerner starts to testify, decides to “Take the Fifth” and is promptly held in “Contempt of Congress.” She is punished with a long-term paid vacation followed by a 100% 6-digit retirement and a $129K bonus. THERE ARE NO CONSEQUENCES! Why did the IRS Commissioner get to serve out his term? He should have been impeached and removed from office - maybe jailed!
    To make matters worse, while there was plenty of evidence of wrongdoing the DOJ supposedly conducted a 2 year investigation and chose not to indict or prosecute anyone. Enter outside legal counsel like Judicial Watch and the ACLJ who managed to obtain documents that the impotent, useless, ineffective Congressional Committee could not. They bring suit in Federal Court and we now have the DOJ and IRS admitting that there was wrongdoing and I suspect millions of taxpayer dollars are being paid out in settlements.
    Lois Lerner was forced to testify and now Ms. Lerner and her key deputy, Holly Paz, have demanded a judge forever seal their depositions and parts of any documents that mention those depositions, saying they fear for their safety. They would be safe if they were in jail! We will never know how many lives were ruined, how many votes were suppressed, or who gave the order to Target! The American people deserve better.
    Unfortunately, this example is more the rule than the exception!
    WHAT ARE YOU DOING TO CHANGE THINGS FOR THE BETTER????? How about trying to restore honesty, integrity, and transparency!!! That would be a welcome change!