The FBI’s Reckoning

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The FBI’s Reckoning

Postby seemslikeadream » Wed Jun 13, 2018 12:30 pm

The FBI’s Reckoning
An upcoming report from the Department of Justice inspector general is expected to criticize the leadership of the bureau for its conduct during the 2016 presidential election.

6:00 AM ET

Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz testifies during a Judiciary Committee hearing on alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 election on Capitol Hill on July 26, 2017. AARON P. BERNSTEIN / REUTERS

The Justice Department’s Office of the Inspector General is rarely in the spotlight. But a highly anticipated report by the department’s internal watchdog will finally be released this week, ending a nearly 18-month investigation into whether the FBI acted improperly in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

The inspector general, Michael Horowitz—commonly referred to as the DOJ’s internal watchdog—announced in January 2017 that his office would examine allegations of misconduct surrounding former FBI Director James Comey’s handling of the probe into Hillary Clinton’s private email server. The news was welcomed by both Democrats—who felt that Comey had shattered Clinton’s chances of winning the election by effectively reopening the email probe just days before the election—and by Republicans, who felt that Comey, after deciding not to charge Clinton with a crime, had let her off easy.

President Trump, who frequently attacks the FBI and DOJ for investigating his campaign team’s ties to Russia, has also taken an interest in Horowitz’s forthcoming report: “What is taking so long with the Inspector General’s Report on Crooked Hillary and Slippery James Comey,” Trump wrote in a tweet last week. “Numerous delays...Hope Report is not being changed and made weaker! There are so many horrible things to tell, the public has the right to know. Transparency!”

It is not clear where Trump got the idea that Horowitz, known as an even-handed professional among current and former Justice Department employees, would deliberately weaken the report. Horowitz served as a prosecutor in the office of the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and in the Justice Department’s criminal division, and was appointed to the inspector general’s job in 2012 by former President Barack Obama.

“Horowitz is an extremely experienced and capable lawyer and former prosecutor,” said David Kris, a founder of Culper Partners who served as the assistant attorney general for the DOJ’s National Security Division from 2009 to 2011.

Horowitz’s power is fairly limited—the inspector general’s office cannot issue subpoenas, for example, and an IG investigation is “far less authoritative” than a criminal investigation, said William Yeomans, a former deputy assistant attorney general who spent 26 years at the DOJ. “The standards for including something in an IG report are lower than that for proving a fact in a criminal case. I also know from personal experience that the IG gets facts wrong sometimes.”

Even so, the IG’s findings and recommendations are broadly viewed as credible by DOJ leadership, and will inevitably be leveraged by Trump and his allies in their efforts to undermine Comey, who was fired by Trump last May and subsequently became an important witness in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe. In addition to investigating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, Mueller is looking at whether Trump attempted to obstruct the Russia inquiry.

“The IG has considerable discretion in making recommendations,” Yeomans said. “There are times when management disagrees with the IG’s recommendations and it can disregard them, but it’s safe to assume (or has been in the past) that Congress will expect an explanation for why a significant recommendation was not followed.” The DOJ, moreover, has historically taken the inspector general’s work “very seriously,” said Kris, the former assistant attorney general. He pointed to the reforms made a decade ago following the IG’s report on the FBI’s use of national-security letters.

Matthew Miller, a former Justice Department spokesman who served under Attorney General Eric Holder, agreed that the inspector general’s findings “are taken incredibly seriously by DOJ leadership, even when they disagree with the findings, as they occasionally do.” He noted that attorneys general and FBI directors will “often” implement new policies or reforms “in direct reaction to things the IG uncovered, as well as discipline people who are found to have engaged in wrongdoing. For better or worse, the IG is usually the final word on what happened, who was at fault, and what needs to be done to fix things when there is a DOJ scandal.”

It is not clear what Horowitz will recommend. But the report will reportedly describe Comey as “insubordinate,” according to ABC, and is expected to criticize him for going around DOJ leadership and announcing the end of the Clinton email probe with his decision to hold a press conference in July 2016, in which he explained the decision not to charge Clinton but excoriated her as “extremely careless” with classified information. Comey has said he made that decision because of a highly publicized meeting between then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch and former President Bill Clinton on the tarmac at Phoenix’s Sky Harbor International Airport in 2016.

Nearly a dozen GOP lawmakers have already asked the Justice Department to investigate Comey for “potential violations of law” related to his “improper investigative conduct” vis-à-vis Clinton and Trump. (The FBI, under Comey, began investigating potential links between Trump’s campaign team and Russia in the summer of 2016.) Democratic lawmakers slammed Comey following the election for what they described as a double standard: The former FBI director had been willing to publicly discuss the Clinton investigation, while keeping secret the ongoing counterintelligence investigation focusing on members of Trump’s campaign team.

A draft report written by Horowitz and described to ABC also criticized Comey and his deputy at the time, Andrew McCabe, for allegedly dragging their feet on examining emails relevant to the Clinton investigation that were uncovered nearly six weeks before the election. Comey did not alert Congress to the emails’ existence until October 28, 2016, when he effectively reopened the investigation only to close it days later—again without recommending criminal charges against Clinton. Horowitz has also been investigating whether DOJ or FBI employees leaked information about Clinton’s emails in the weeks leading up to Comey’s announcement.

The White House’s initial explanation for firing Comey was his conduct in the Clinton email probe, described in a memo written by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein as unfair to Clinton and a violation of Justice Department standards. Trump later said in a television interview that he was thinking of the Russia investigation when he dismissed Comey, undercutting the public rationale for his firing.

Yeomans predicted that Congress would likely be “all over this report to exploit its criticism of Comey.” But, he added, “what should never be lost in the responses is that Comey’s errors in handling the Clinton investigation all helped Trump.” ... urce=atltw
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Re: The FBI’s Reckoning

Postby seemslikeadream » Wed Jun 13, 2018 1:30 pm

NOV 3, 2016

The FBI Wants to Make America Great Again
NOV 3, 2016 6:00 AM EDT
Eli Lake
Maybe it’s just me, but I think the FBI is trying to send a message about next week’s election.

FBI examining fake documents targeting Clinton campaign: sources

By Mark Hosenball | WASHINGTON
The FBI and U.S. intelligence agencies are examining faked documents aimed at discrediting the Hillary Clinton campaign as part of a broader investigation into what U.S. officials believe has been an attempt by Russia to disrupt the presidential election, people with knowledge of the matter said.

U.S. Senator Tom Carper, a Democrat on the Senate Homeland Security Committee, has referred one of the documents to the FBI for investigation on the grounds that his name and stationery were forged to appear authentic, some of the sources who had knowledge of that discussion said.

In the letter identified as fake, Carper is quoted as writing to Clinton, “We will not let you lose this election,” a person who saw the document told Reuters.

The fake Carper letter, which was described to Reuters, is one of several documents presented to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the U.S. Department of Justice for review in recent weeks, the sources said.

A spokeswoman for Carper declined to comment.

As part of an investigation into suspected Russian hacking, FBI investigators have also asked Democratic Party officials to provide copies of other suspected faked documents that have been circulating along with emails and other legitimate documents taken in the hack, people involved in those conversations said.

A spokesman for the FBI confirmed the agency was “in receipt of a complaint about an alleged fake letter” related to the election but declined further comment. Others with knowledge of the matter said the FBI was also examining other fake documents that recently surfaced.

U.S. intelligence officials have warned privately that a campaign they believe is backed by the Russian government to undermine the credibility of the U.S. presidential election could move beyond the hacking of Democratic Party email systems. That could include posting fictional evidence of voter fraud or other disinformation in the run-up to voting on Nov. 8, U.S. officials have said.

Russian officials deny any such effort.

In addition to the Carper letter, the FBI has also reviewed a seven-page electronic document that carries the logos of Democratic pollster Joel Benenson’s firm, the Benenson Strategy Group, and the Clinton Foundation, a person with knowledge of the matter said.

The document, identified as a fake by the Clinton campaign, claims poll ratings had plunged for Clinton and called for “severe strategy changes for November” that could include “staged civil unrest” and “radiological attack” with dirty bombs to disrupt the vote.

Like the Carper letter, it was not immediately clear where the fraudulent document had originated or how it had begun to circulate.

On Oct. 20, Roger Stone, a former Trump aide and Republican operative, linked to a copy of the document on Twitter with the tag, “If this is real: OMG!!”

Benenson’s firm had no immediate comment. Craig Minassian, a spokesman for the Clinton Foundation, said the document was “fake.” He said he did not know if the FBI had examined it.

Stone did not respond to emails requesting comment.

A spokesman for the Clinton campaign, Glen Caplin, said the document was a fake and part of a “desperate stunt” to capitalize on the leak of Democratic emails by Wikileaks.

The developments highlight the unusually prominent role U.S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies have played in a contentious election and an ongoing debate about how public they can or should be about their inquiries.

FBI Director James Comey, a Republican appointed by President Obama, touched off an outcry from Democrats last week when he alerted Congress that agents had found other emails that could be linked to an inquiry into Clinton’s use of a private email server when she was Secretary of State, effectively re-opening an investigation he had closed in July.

(Editing by Kevin Krolicki, John Walcott, Toni Reinhold) ... SKBN12Y2WY

Agent: FBI is ‘Trumplandia’

By Tim Devaney - 11/03/16 03:40 PM EDT
The FBI is “Trumplandia,” according to an agent who spoke anonymously to The Guardian newspaper.

In a report published Thursday, multiple sources within the FBI say that deep antipathy toward Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and anger that FBI Director James Comey did not bring charges against her this summer have motivated leaks that could damage her presidential campaign.

One agent told The Guardian that many at the bureau view Clinton as the “antichrist” and are supportive of Trump.

“That’s the reason why they’re leaking is they’re pro-Trump,” the FBI agent told The Guardian.

But another FBI source disputed the level of support Trump has within the bureau, according to The Guardian.

“There are lots of people who don’t think Trump is qualified, but also believe Clinton is corrupt,” the source said. “What you hear a lot is that it’s a bad choice, between an incompetent and a corrupt politician.”

According to the report, the tensions boiled over in July when Comey declined to recommend charges against the Democratic presidential nominee for possibly mishandling classified information through her use of a private email server to conduct government business, according to the FBI agent.

Comey last week sent a letter to congressional committees notifying them that the FBI was looking at new emails uncovered in a separate investigation that could be related to the Clinton case. The FBI has come under tremendous criticism from Democrats and some Republicans for interfering with the election by releasing that information to Congress just under two weeks from Election Day.

There have been further leaks about internal fights within the FBI and other possible investigations since the Comey news broke, all of which has suggested an agency in a public war with itself.

FBI launches internal investigation into its own Twitter account
An FBI tweet may have crossed the line.

The FBI has launched an internal investigation into one of its own Twitter accounts.
The account at issue, @FBIRecordsVault, had been dormant for more than a year. Then on October 30 at 4 a.m., the account released a flood of documents, including one describing Donald Trump’s father Fred Trump as a “philanthropist.”

But it wasn’t until two days later, when the account tweeted documents regarding President Bill Clinton’s controversial pardon of Marc Rich, that the account began to attract significant attention.

The account has not been active since that tweet.
ThinkProgress has learned that the FBI’s Inspection Division will undertake an investigation of the account.
Candice Will, Assistant Director for the FBI’s Office of Professional Responsibility, said she was referring the matter to the FBI’s Inspection Division for an “investigation.” Upon completion of the investigation, the findings will be referred back to the the Office of Professional Responsibility for “adjudication.”
Federal law and FBI policy prohibit employees from using the power of the department to attempt to influence elections.
Will was responding to a complaint from Jonathan Hutson, a former investigative reporter who now works in communication in Washington, DC. She did not respond to requests, via phone and email, for further comment.
Nancy McNamara, the Assistant Director of the FBI’s Inspection Division, also confirmed to Hutson that she had received the complaint. She copied Voviette Morgan, a 19-year veteran now serving as Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the Los Angeles office.
News of the internal investigation is at odds with the FBI’s official position, which is that the Twitter account followed all FBI procedures.
“Per the standard procedure for FOIA, these materials became available for release and were posted automatically and electronically to the FBI’s public reading room in accordance with the law and established procedures,” the FBI said in a statement.
The strange tweets come days after James Comey released a letter revealing that the department was reviewing some emails that could be relevant to the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s private email server. The Justice Department opposed release of the letter, arguing that it violated department protocols.
Since that time, there has been a series of leaks about FBI activity that appear to be designed to damage Hillary Clinton and benefit Donald Trump. An anonymous source for example, leaked to the Wall Street Journal that there was an investigation — including “secret recordings” — into the Clinton Foundation. The New York Times, also citing anonymous sources, reported that the FBI believed that Russia was just trying to disrupt the U.S. election, not help Donald Trump. ... .vosttcd7n

The Theory That the FBI Is Out to Get Clinton Is Becoming More Plausible

By Ben Mathis-Lilley
The Federal Bureau of Investigations headquarters in Washington, USA on August 26, 2016.

When Democrats reacted to FBI Director James Comey's letter to Congress about the sort-of-reopened investigation into Hillary Clinton's private server by accusing Comey of trying to meddle in the election on behalf of the Republican Party, the accusation seemed far-fetched. Comey was, until last Friday, generally despised by Republicans for his earlier decision to recommend against prosecuting Clinton. But while there's been of yet no evidence revealed that Comey himself has an ax to grind, a number of data points have emerged indicating the presence of a politically motivated anti-Clinton faction within the agency.

For one, leaks keep coming out of the FBI that are unflattering to Clinton. First there was the revelation that the Clinton emails the FBI is currently checking for classified info came from Anthony Weiner's computer. (A good rule of thumb is that no political candidate wants his/her name anywhere near a headline that also involves the notorious A-Weens.) Then there was a story on Fox News (and a much more measured one in the Wall Street Journal) about the existence of an investigation into potential corruption at the Clinton Foundation. And the FBI also tweeted about a document release related to Bill Clinton's controversial pardon of Marc Rich.

On a parallel track, there was a report Thursday in the Guardian about FBI agents actively supporting Trump:

“The FBI is Trumpland,” said one current agent ... The currently serving FBI agent said Clinton is “the antichrist personified to a large swath of FBI personnel,” and that “the reason why they’re leaking is they’re pro-Trump.”
Longtime Trump expert Wayne Barrett wrote Thursday in the Daily Beast, meanwhile, about the connections between Trump and the FBI. The FBI Agents Association—a unionlike 13,000-member group—has close ties to Rudy Giuliani, a top Trump surrogate, and Giuliani has said on Fox News that he's in touch with current agents who are upset about Comey's decision not to prosecute Clinton. A former agent named Jim Kallstrom has appeared on Fox several times saying the same thing; Kallstrom's Marine Corps Law Enforcement Foundation has received funding from Trump and the Trump Foundation, and one of its directors is Rush Limbaugh.

The Guardian piece notes that other sources besides its quoted agent "dispute the depth of support for Trump within the bureau." And Barrett is writing only about Trump allies making claims of connections to current agents; we don't know whether those connections are in fact as strong as Giuliani and Kallstrom make them out to be, or whether said agents are upset about the Clinton email situation specifically because they support Trump. But when you combine the Guardian/Barrett reports with the kind of leaks that are coming out, Democrats' dark suggestions about the FBI's motives start to sound less like the reflexively defensive innuendo they at first seemed. ... _says.html

Anti-Clinton Sentiment Reportedly Prompted FBI Leaks: 'The FBI Is Trumpland' ... ry-clinton

Joy Reid ‏@JoyAnnReid 22h22 hours ago
To reiterate: if the @WSJ story is correct, the FBI mounted an investigation based on a book that financially benefits the GOP campaign CEO.

Bad, Bad Stuff Out of FBI


NOVEMBER 3, 2016, 7:00 PM EDT

Mark Hosenball has another look inside what's been happening at the FBI. It's another slice of the story but one that is consistent with Spencer Ackerman's piece in The Guardian and the best reporting I've seen on James Comey's role in this. I continue to think that one key part of Comey's role was simply a mix of naivete and indifference about the effect of his letter. Another driving force, though, as Hosenball reports, was fear of leaks and the Republican criticism they would drive.

From Hosenball ...
FBI Director James Comey was driven in part by a fear of leaks from within his agency when he decided to tell Congress the FBI was investigating newly discovered emails related to Hillary Clinton, law enforcement sources said on Thursday.
And this (emphasis added) ...
Two law enforcement sources familiar with the FBI's New York Field Office, which initially discovered the emails, said a faction of investigators based in the office is known to be hostile to Hillary Clinton. A spokeswoman for the FBI's New York office said she had no knowledge about this.
Democratic Party sources said such a faction was likely responsible for a recent surge in media leaks on alleged details of an ongoing FBI investigation of the Clinton Foundation. ... out-of-fbi

THURSDAY, NOV 3, 2016 02:16 PM CDT
Donald Trump’s FBI: James Comey’s department is filled with pro-Trump, anti-Hillary Clinton partisans

The bureau seems to be filled with partisan hacks hell-bent on investigating Hillary Clinton


Under the FBI’s director, James Comey, whose ethically challenged letter sent last Friday put wind in Republican Donald Trump’s sails, the bureau appears to be ready to kick off a partisan witch hunt against Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton — and it’s all because the agents harbor a pro-Trump bias.

As The Guardian reported on Thursday, sources within the FBI told the newspaper that many agents were outraged that Comey decided to not recommend an indictment against Clinton in July in connection with her use of a private email server. Last Friday Comey signaled in his letter that the agency is reviewing newly surfaced emails to see if they are pertinent to the now closed Clinton investigation.

“The FBI is Trumpland,” one agent told The Guardian, with another describing how Clinton is “the antichrist personified to a large swathe of FBI personnel” and “the reason why they’re leaking is they’re pro-Trump.”

While some of The Guardian’s sources disagreed that the FBI is overwhelmingly pro-Trump, all indicated that the attitude toward Clinton is extremely negative.

“There are lots of people who don’t think Trump is qualified, but also believe Clinton is corrupt,” said a former FBI official. “What you hear a lot is that it’s a bad choice, between an incompetent and a corrupt politician.”

VideoThe FBI Reopens Its Investigation of Hillary Clinton’s Emails

One of these partisan agents is feeding Fox News’ Brett Baier, who claimed on Wednesday that he had sources in the FBI personally assuring him that Clinton is going to be indicted.

“Two separate sources with intimate knowledge of the FBI investigations into the Clinton emails and the Clinton Foundation tell Fox the following,” Baier said on his show. “The investigation looking into possible pay-for-play interaction between secretary of state Hillary Clinton and the foundation has been going on for more than a year. Led by the white-collar crime division, public corruption branch of the criminal investigative division of the FBI.”

There have been hints at an anti-Clinton bias in the FBI before now. Two days before Comey released his October surprise, former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani (who has very close connections to the FBI) told Fox, “I think [Donald Trump’s] got a surprise or two that you’re going to hear about in the next few days. I mean, I’m talking about some pretty big surprises.” When asked what he meant by that, he said, “We’ve got a couple of things up our sleeve that should turn this thing around.”

After Comey released his letter last Friday, Giuliani appeared on radio saying that many FBI agents believed that not charging Clinton was “completely unjustified and almost a slap in the face to the FBI’s integrity. I know that from former agents. I know that even from a few active agents.” ... partisans/
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This Isn’t the Madman Theory. This Is a Madman President
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Re: The FBI’s Reckoning

Postby seemslikeadream » Wed Jun 13, 2018 1:51 pm


Alex @aroseblush
Part of the FBI is Trumpland, and is part of . They are trying to throw the election to Trump with their leaks.

Alex ‏@aroseblush is owned by this zillionaire Robert Mercer

Alex ‏@aroseblush
FBI used a book put out by Briebart(campaign chair for Trump) which is a witch hunt against Hillay to convince Comey to change mind

Meet Donald Trump’s Top FBI Fanboy
Trump supporters with strong ties to the agency kept talking about surprises and leaks to come—and come they did.


11.03.16 12:03 AM ET
Two days before FBI director James Comey rocked the world last week, Rudy Giuliani was on Fox, where he volunteered, un-prodded by any question: “I think he’s [Donald Trump] got a surprise or two that you’re going to hear about in the next few days. I mean, I’m talking about some pretty big surprises.”
Pressed for specifics, he said: “We’ve got a couple of things up our sleeve that should turn this thing around.”
The man who now leads “lock-her-up” chants at Trump rallies spent decades of his life as a federal prosecutor and then mayor working closely with the FBI, and especially its New York office. One of Giuliani’s security firms employed a former head of the New York FBI office, and other alumni of it. It was agents of that office, probing Anthony Weiner’s alleged sexting of a minor, who pressed Comey to authorize the review of possible Hillary Clinton-related emails on a Weiner device that led to the explosive letter the director wrote Congress.
Hours after Comey’s letter about the renewed probe was leaked on Friday, Giuliani went on a radio show and attributed the director’s surprise action to “the pressure of a group of FBI agents who don’t look at it politically.”
“The other rumor that I get is that there’s a kind of revolution going on inside the FBI about the original conclusion [not to charge Clinton] being completely unjustified and almost a slap in the face to the FBI’s integrity,” said Giuliani. “I know that from former agents. I know that even from a few active agents.”
Along with Giuliani’s other connections to New York FBI agents, his former law firm, then called Bracewell Giuliani, has long been general counsel to the FBI Agents Association (FBIAA), which represents 13,000 former and current agents. The group, born in the New York office in the early ’80s, was headed until Monday by Rey Tariche, an agent still working in that office. Tariche’s resignation letter from the bureau mentioned the Clinton probe, noting that “we find our work—our integrity questioned” because of it, adding “we will not be used for political gains.”
When the FBIAA threw its first G-Man Honors Gala in 2014 in Washington, Giuliani was the keynote speaker and was given a distinguished service award named after him. Giuliani left Bracewell this January and joined Greenberg Traurig, the only other law firm listed as a sponsor of the FBIAA gala. He spoke again at the 2015 gala. The Bracewell firm also acts as the association’s Washington lobbyist and the FBIAA endorsed Republican Congressman Mike Rodgers, rather than Comey, for the FBI post in 2013. Giuliani did not return a Daily Beast message left with his assistant.
Back in August, during a contentious CNN interview about Comey’s July announcement clearing Hillary Clinton of criminal charges, Giuliani advertised his illicit FBI sources, who circumvented bureau guidelines to discuss a case with a public partisan. “The decision perplexes me. It perplexes Jim Kallstrom, who worked for him. It perplexes numerous FBI agents who talk to me all the time. And it embarrasses some FBI agents.”
Kallstrom is the former head of the New York FBI office, installed in that post in the ’90s by then-FBI director Louis Freeh, one of Giuliani’s longtime friends. Kallstrom has, like Giuliani, been on an anti-Comey romp for months, most often on Fox, where he’s called the Clintons as a “crime family.” He has been invoking unnamed FBI agents who contact him to complain about Comey’s exoneration of Clinton in one interview after another, positioning himself as an apolitical champion of FBI values.
Last October, after President Obama told 60 Minutes that the Clinton emails weren’t a national security issue, Megyn Kelly interviewed Kallstrom on Fox. “You know a lot of the agents involved in this investigation,” she said. “How angry must they be tonight?”
“I know some of the agents,” said Kallstrom. “I know some of the supervisors and I know the senior staff. And they’re P.O.’d, I mean no question. This is like someone driving another nail in the coffin of the criminal justice system.”
Kallstrom declared that “if it’s pushed under the rug,” the agents “won’t take that sitting down.” Kelly confirmed: “That’s going to get leaked.”
When Comey cleared Clinton this July, Kallstrom was on Fox again, declaring: “I’ve talked to about 15 different agents today—both on the job and off the job—who are basically worried about the reputation of the agency they love.” The number grew dramatically by Labor Day weekend when Comey released Clinton’s FBI interview and other documents, and Kallstrom told Kelly he was talking to “50 different people in and out of the agency, retired agents,” all of whom he said were “basically disgusted” by Comey’s latest release.
By Sept. 28, Kallstrom said he’d been contacted by hundreds of people, including “a lot of retired agents and a few on the job,” declaring the agents “involved in this thing feel like they’ve been stabbed in the back.” So, he said, “I think we’re going to see a lot more of the facts come out in the course of the next few months. That’s my prediction.”
Kallstrom, whose exchanges with active agents about particular cases are as contrary to FBI policy as Giuliani’s, formally and passionately endorsed Trump this week on Stuart Varney’s Fox Business show, adding that Clinton is a “pathological liar.”

Kallstrom, who served as a Marine before becoming an agent, didn’t mention that a charity he’d founded decades ago and that’s now called the Marine Corps Law Enforcement Foundation, was the single biggest beneficiary of Trump’s promise to raise millions for veterans when he boycotted the Iowa primary debate. A foundation official said that Trump’s million-dollar donation this May, atop $100,000 that he’d given in March, were the biggest individual grants it had ever received. The Trump Foundation had contributed another $230,000 in prior years and Trump won the organization’s top honor at its annual Waldorf Astoria gala in 2015.
The charity, which Kallstrom has chaired without pay since its founding, says it has given away $64 million in scholarships and other aid to veteran families. Rush Limbaugh is a director and has given it enormous exposure on his show and helped it fundraise. Its executive director also worked at the highest levels of New York Governor George Pataki’s Republican administration, and its vice president is also the regional vice president for Trump Hotels in the New York area. The FBI New York office, the charity’s 2015 newsletter noted, then employed 100 former Marines.
Kallstrom, who first worked with Giuliani when the future mayor was a young assistant prosecutor in the early ’70s, was Pataki’s public safety director for five years after the 9/11 attacks and claims he was the one who recommended Comey to Pataki, who got the Bush White House to name him to Giuliani’s old job, U.S. attorney for the Southern District in 2001. Comey had worked in the Southern District for years, hired as a young assistant in 1987 by Freeh, then a top Giuliani deputy.
Kallstrom’s victory tour this weekend also included an appearance on Fox with former Westchester District Attorney Jeanine Pirro, another close associate of Pataki’s, who complained on air that she’d been the victim in 2006 when word emerged that the U.S attorney and FBI were probing her in the midst of a race she eventually lost to Andrew Cuomo to become New York Attorney General.
Her concern about the political impact of law enforcement leaks, though, didn’t extend to Democrat Hillary Clinton. “He couldn’t hold on to this any longer,” Kallstrom said of Comey. “Who knows, maybe the locals would’ve done it,” he added, a reference to leaks that elicited glee from Pirro, who echoed: “New York City, that’s my thing!”
In a wide-ranging phone interview on Tuesday with The Daily Beast, Kallstrom first repeated his claim that he gets hundreds and hundreds of calls and emails but stressed they all came from retired agents, adding that he didn’t “want to talk about agents on the job.” Then he acknowledged that he did interact with “active agents.” The agents mostly contacted him before the recent Comey letter because “in all but two cases,” they agreed with what he was saying in his TV appearances, noting that those two exceptions both thought “I should be more supportive of Comey.”
Kallstrom adamantly denied he’d ever said he was in contact with agents “involved” in the Clinton case, insisting that he didn’t even know “the agents’ names.” He asked if this story was “a hit piece,” and contended that it was “offensive” to even suggest that he’d communicated with those agents. When I emailed him two quotes where he made that claim, he responded: “I know agents in the building who used to work for me. I don’t know any agents in the Washington field office involved directly in the investigation.”
Later, though he acknowledged that “the bulk” of the agents on the Weiner case are “in the New York office,” even as he insisted that the “locals” he told Pirro would’ve leaked the renewed probe had not Comey revealed it were not necessarily agents.
He declined to explain why Megyn Kelly stated as a fact that he was in contact with agents “involved” in the case. Asked in a follow up email if he suggested or encouraged any particular actions in his exchanges with active agents, Kallstrom replied: “No.”
“Now, I’m supporting Comey,” Kallstrom told me on the phone, adding that he can’t do or say anything else before election day. “He can’t characterize” what the bureau has from the Weiner emails. “The FBI can’t say anything without having all the information,” Kallstrom contends, just after telling me he supports the FBI director who’s under fire for having done just that.
And, though he predicted in September that more facts about the Clinton case would soon come out, he told me he was “surprised” by the Comey letter. Calling Giuliani a “very good friend,” who he’s seen in TV studios a couple of times recently when they were both doing appearances, Kallstrom said he thought Giuliani was more likely referring to WikiLeaks revelations or videotapes from Project Veritas when he teased big surprises to come.
Kallstrom said he hasn’t spoken to Trump for months, though he did email Trump’s office the day he endorsed him and got a thank you response from an aide. He says he first met Trump when he solicited a donation from him for a Vietnam Vet memorial and that they’d see each other—usually at public events and dinners—over the years, sometimes as often as two or three times a year. Kallstrom said he’d have breakfast at the Plaza with his wife and visit with Trump and his kids, who he got to know at an early age.
When Trump owned casinos in Atlantic City, he allowed Kallstrom’s organization to hold fundraisers “pro bono” there. Trump became a major supporter of New York’s Police Athletic League, run for decades by Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau, all moves that endeared him to law enforcement officials in jurisdictions where he did business.
Despite his ties to Pataki, Limbaugh, and Trump, Kallstrom says he’s apolitical and has never been involved in a campaign, including Trump’s now. He says he’s a registered independent, and that the people he’s known in the FBI over all his years are as nonpartisan as he is.
But, as quiet as it’s kept, no Democrat has ever been appointed FBI director. Four Democratic presidents, starting with FDR’s selection of J. Edgar Hoover in 1935, have instead picked Republicans, including Obama’s 2013 nomination of Comey, who was confirmed 93 to 1. This tally does not include the seven acting directors, who were named for brief periods over the last 81 years. For the first time in FBI history, the agency is now run by a director who isn’t a Republican, since Comey announced in a congressional hearing this year that though a lifelong Republican, having donated to John McCain and Mitt Romney, he had recently changed his registration (he did not say how he is currently registered).
Six months into his first term in 1993, President Bill Clinton tapped Freeh, a onetime FBI agent who’d worked under Kallstrom, and Freeh spent much of his eight years at the bureau’s helm trying to put Clinton in jail, even dispatching agents to a White House side room to get the president’s DNA during a formal dinner. When Freeh stepped down in 2001, shortly after George Bush replaced Clinton, he went to work for credit-card company MBNA, a giant Republican donor where Kallstrom and another top Freeh FBI appointee were already working. He’s still hunting for the Clintons, though—delivering a speech assailing them at an annual FBI office event in New York last year.
It’s not just the man at the top who’s invariably a Republican. Like most law enforcement agencies, the FBI hierarchy and line staff has a Republican bent—it’s a white, male, usually Catholic, and conservative culture.
Giuliani and Kallstrom claim that the agents revolting against Comey’s handling of Hillary Clinton were doing it because they want apoltical investigations, with all targets treated the same. But neither of them, much less FBI brass or agents, were publicly upset when the worst Justice Department scandal in modern history exploded in 2007, with Karl Rove, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, and the Bush White House swamped by allegations that they’d tried to force out nine U.S. attorneys and replace them with “loyal Bushies,” as Gonzales’s chief of staff put it. Democratic officials, candidates and fundraisers were five times as likely to be prosecuted by Bush’s justice than Republicans.
Then at the top of the polls in the 2008 presidential race, Giuliani had to answer questions about it and said that he thought Gonzales should get “the benefit of the doubt,” calling him “a decent man” a few months before he resigned. “We should try to remove on both sides as much of the partisanship as possible,” lectured Giuliani. He recalled that strict rules were put into place while he was at the top levels of justice in the aftermath of Watergate limiting contact between law enforcement and political figures, a particular irony in view of the fact that he talks freely today about engaging in just such conversations on national television, oblivious to the fact that he is now a “political figure.”
Giuliani’s mentor, Michael Mukasey, who succeeded Gonzales as attorney general, appointed a special investigator to examine the U.S. attorney scandal and she concluded that no laws had been broken. It was later reported that four days before Mukasey named this special prosecutor, a federal appeals court vacated seven of eight convictions in a case she supervised in Connecticut, ruling that the team suppressed exculpatory evidence, including the notes of an FBI agent. Kallstrom contends he didn’t say anything about the blatant partisan interference then because he was “never asked to comment,” though he had been a law enforcement consultant for CBS News in about the same time frame. How he became a frequent Fox commentator now is unclear.
It’s clear enough, though, why when Comey sent a note to FBI staff on Friday explaining his decision to inform Congress about the renewed Clinton probe, the scoop about that internal memo went to Fox News. Why Kallstrom gets booked to talked about the Clintons a “crime family.” Why Clinton Cash author Peter Schweitzer, caught in a web of Breitbart and Trump conflicts, would announce on Fox that he was asked in August to sit down with New York office FBI agents investigating the Clinton Foundation (with The New York Times reporting this week that the agents were relying largely on his discredited work when they pitched a fullscale probe).
Fox is the pipeline for the fifth column inside the bureau, a battalion that says it’s doing God’s work, chasing justice against those who are obstructing it, while, in fact, it’s doing GOP work, even on the eve of a presidential election. ... anboy.html

John Mercer..the financier of the book Clinton Cash

FBI used a book put out by Briebart(campaign chair for Trump) which is a witch hunt against Hillay to convince Comey to change mind

Billionaire father and daughter linked to Trump shake-up

By Jonathan Swan - 08/17/16 04:37 PM EDT

Donald Trump’s dramatic staff shake-up on Wednesday revealed the growing influence wielded on his campaign by a Republican megadonor duo.

The fingerprints of Robert Mercer, a New York hedge fund billionaire, and his middle daughter, Rebekah, can be seen all over the new Trump staffing appointments and other decisions being made by the GOP presidential nominee.

The Mercers, who previously put $13.5 million into a super-PAC supporting Texas Sen. Ted Cruz's presidential bid, have recently converted the group into the Defeat Crooked Hillary PAC, targeting Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.
Robert Mercer has reportedly made a “substantial” additional investment of at least $1 million in the new super-PAC, which has already spent $500,000 on digital ads attacking Clinton in eight battleground states. Additionally, he and particularly Rebekah have become influential figures in Trump World in the past few months.

Rebekah Mercer “lives in a beautiful apartment in one of Trump's buildings on the Upper West Side [of New York City] overlooking the Hudson River,” a source who knows her told The Hill.

A Heritage Foundation trustee and director of the Mercer Family Foundation, Rebekah takes the lead on the details of the Mercers’ political operation, while her father provides the funds.

She’s known as a hands-on operator who won’t open up the Mercer checkbook without strict conditions about which vendors are used and which consultants are hired.

Now loyal to Trump, the Mercers were furious when Cruz didn’t endorse the nominee at the Republican National Convention last month. And because they are among the few megadonors to get fully behind Trump, they now increasingly have his ear.

Stephen Bannon, the Trump campaign’s newly appointed CEO, is “tied at the hip” with Rebekah Mercer, said a source who has worked with the Mercers in their political activities.

The Mercers are united with Bannon in their deep opposition to Clinton. They worked with Bannon and provided funds for the "Clinton Cash" movie, based on the book by Peter Schweizer.

And Trump’s other major appointment Wednesday — his promotion of veteran pollster Kellyanne Conway from senior adviser to campaign manager — also bears the hallmarks of the GOP megadonor family’s influence, according to sources who have worked with the Mercers.

“The Mercers basically own this campaign,” said a source who has worked with Rebekah Mercer in her political activities. “They have installed their people. ... And now they’ve got their data firm in there.”

That assertion is possibly overselling the Mercer’s influence because the GOP nominee is his own man and has strong personal relationships with both Bannon and Conway, a source close to Trump said.

But even this source, who said Trump would not be swayed by any donor, conceded that the Mercers have built significant influence over the campaign in a relatively short time.

Trump’s recent decision to employ the data firm Cambridge Analytica, a company in which Robert Mercer is an investor, is another clear sign of Rebekah Mercer's influence, two sources who have worked with Cambridge said.

“As a donor, this is reflective of how she operates,” one of these sources said of Rebekah Mercer, who has both a dual bachelor's degree and a master's degree from Stanford University.

“She’s very nice and very unassuming ... but she’s also no bullshit. Her style is, 'If you want my money, you have to do things the way I want.'"

Neither Cambridge Analytica, the Trump campaign, nor representatives for the Mercers would comment for this report.

Conway, who also did not respond to a request for comment, led the Cruz-aligned Keep the Promise super-PAC funded by the Mercers and is a trusted political adviser to the family.

Rebekah Mercer has been known to recommend that people she works with travel to Los Angeles to meet with Bannon.

“And it’s not a recommendation; it’s happening. It’s understood that it’s happening. She’ll set up the dinner with Bannon,” said a source who has worked with Mercer.

Bannon, a former Goldman Sachs banker and Navy officer, predated Trump in pushing the populist nationalism that now dominates the GOP nominee’s campaign.

To lead Trump’s campaign, he’s taking temporary leave from running Breitbart News, a pro-Trump news website also funded by the Mercers.

Rebekah Mercer has been known to indicate to people in the public policy world that she can influence Breitbart coverage where needed.

During the Republican convention, Bannon and Breitbart’s Washington political editor, Matt Boyle, were listed as invited guests of Mercer in a private donor suite, according to a document published by Bloomberg Politics. The Hill could not confirm their attendance in the suite.

The Washington Post reported Wednesday that Mercer spoke to Trump on Saturday evening at a Hamptons fundraiser hosted at the home of New York Jets owner Woody Johnson. She reportedly spoke highly of Bannon, who has long been a confidant of Trump’s.

Little has been written about the Mercers because they avoid the public spotlight, but conservative sources who know the family, who spoke on condition of anonymity, described them as “kind, civic-minded people and consensus-builders.”

“Bekah and her two sisters have a side cookie business,” one of these sources said when asked to give a flavor of Bekah's personal style.

“She will serve these delicious gourmet cookies at her apartment, at conservative fundraisers. ... She sends people on their way with hand-wrapped cookies."

But that source, who has worked with Mercer in some of her other political ventures, said it was a surprise to some people that the Mercers had swung so forcefully behind Trump, given her ideological bent.

“She identifies as a libertarian. At least she always did,” the source said, adding that Mercer was a big supporter of libertarian think tanks like the Goldwater Institute and Cato.

“With Bekah you always had to prove your libertarian racing stripes,” the source added. “This seems really strange.” ... mp-shakeup

Donald Trump Finds an Easy Mark in Urine Mogul Robert Mercer

Jon Schwarz
October 13 2016, 12:30 p.m.
EVEN AS DONALD TRUMP’S campaign has exploded like the Krakatoa volcano in 1883, his primary financial backer, billionaire hedge fund manager Robert Mercer, has never wavered.

In a recent statement Mercer declared, in language reminiscent of an early John Birch pamphlet, that “America is finally fed up and disgusted with its political elite. Trump is channeling this disgust and those among the political elite who quake before the boombox of media blather do not appreciate the apocalyptic choice that America faces on November 8th. We have a country to save and there is only one person who can save it.”

Mercer, the co-CEO of Renaissance Technologies on Long Island, is the most generous conservative donor of this election, contributing more than $20 million so far. Mercer began the cycle as a key supporter of Ted Cruz, creating Keep the Promise I, a Super PAC devoted to electing Cruz, and giving it $13.5 million. But when Cruz dropped out, Mercer changed its name to Make America Number 1, gave it millions more, and set it to work electing Trump. Mercer is also one of the main investors in Breitbart, and his daughter organized the August campaign shakeup that put Kellyanne Conway and Steve Bannon — both longtime Mercer intimates — in charge.

So why does Mercer feel such allegiance to Trump? Is it Trump’s policies, élan, and extraordinary judgement and poise?

Maybe. But based on Mercer’s past, it’s more likely that it’s that Mercer is an incredibly easy mark. He has a long history of falling for cranks and grifters, and Trump is just the largest.

Mercer is a relative newcomer to big-time Republican politics, but not to writing big checks to people with exciting proposals to change the world.

For instance, in 2005 Mercer’s family foundation sent $60,000 to Art Robinson, an Oregon chemist, so Robinson could expand his huge collection of human urine. Robinson, who believes that a close analysis of urine can “improve our health, our happiness and prosperity, and even the academic performance of our children in school,” has now received a total of $1.4 million from the Mercer foundation. He’s used this to buy urine freezers and mail postcards to puzzled Oregonians asking them to send him their urine, among other things.

Robinson, who also feels public education is America’s “most widespread and devastating form of child abuse and racism,” ran for Congress in 2010 against Democrat Peter DeFazio. Mercer, smitten with Robinson’s vision of low taxes and large-scale urine collection, co-funded a Super PAC that spent $600,000 on ads supporting him.

Mercer also funds the peculiar organization Doctors for Disaster Preparedness, to which Robinson belongs. The group’s other members hold varied beliefs, such as that low doses of radiation are good for you, that HIV does not cause AIDS, and that the U.S. government did not stop the San Bernardino terrorist attacks because it’s “on the other side.”

More recently, Mercer contributed $425,000 to the Super PAC “Black Americans for a Better Future.” The other donors — all of whom appear to be, like Mercer, white — have given only $38,350 combined, making Mercer responsible for 92 percent of the haul. BABF seems to exist only to employ Raynard Jackson, an African-American political consultant in Washington, D.C., who has accused Barack Obama of “relentless pandering to homosexuals.” Given that BABF’s stated goal is to deliver “at least 15% of the black vote” to the GOP presidential nominee this year, it’s fair to say it hasn’t been a rousing success. In the small world of black Republicans, Jackson is viewed as an embarrassment and a conman.

Then we come to Trump, whose portfolios of scams seems as infinite as the stars. Remarkably, Trump has also been involved in urine solicitation — his multilevel marketing scheme The Trump Network asked members to send in a urine sample so they could receive vitamins perfectly tailored to their metabolism. Perhaps it was hearing about the urine angle that ultimately sold Mercer on Trump’s trustworthiness and acumen.

In the end, Mercer’s story seems a little sad. It’s easy to imagine Trump, Bannon, and Conway explaining to him that with just a little more of his money they can win the election by proving that two wrongs in fact do make a right. “We’ve got trouble, right here in New York City,” they must tell him on conference calls. “And that starts with T, and that rhymes with C, and that stands for Clenis.”

Then everybody hangs up and Mercer goes back to playing with his $2 million model train, overjoyed that he’s finally got some nice, smart friends who really like him. ... rt-mercer/

As Trump Ally, Rudy Giuliani Boasts of Ties to F.B.I.
About New York
By JIM DWYER NOV. 3, 2016

Rudolph W. Giuliani, the former mayor of New York, seemed in a giddy mood when he was interviewed last week on the “Fox & Friends” morning television show.

Tireless if often wildly inaccurate in his attacks on Hillary Clinton’s ethics, health and work as a United States senator and as secretary of state, Mr. Giuliani has been spending every minute in the public spotlight as a surrogate for Donald J. Trump.

His most remarkable claim is that he has a pipeline into the Federal Bureau of Investigation and that agents tell him they are “outraged” that they have not been able to bring Mrs. Clinton and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, to justice.

But his television appearance on Tuesday of last week appeared, at the time, to be in a softer hue.

Brian Kilmeade, a Fox News host, asked Mr. Giuliani about the presidential campaign during its last two weeks.

“Does Donald Trump plan anything except a series of inspiring rallies?” Mr. Kilmeade asked.

“Yes,” Mr. Giuliani replied.

Another host, Ainsley Earhardt, jumped in.

“What?” she asked.

“Ha-ha-ha,” Mr. Giuliani laughed. “You’ll see.”

Appearing to enjoy his own coy reply, Mr. Giuliani resumed chuckling: “Ha-ha-ha.”

“When will this happen?” Ms. Earhardt asked.

“We got a couple of surprises left,” Mr. Giuliani said, smiling.

This enigmatic reply roused the show’s third host, Steve Doocy.

“October surprises?” he asked.

Mr. Giuliani expanded a bit.

“Well,” he said, “I call them early surprises in the way we’re going to campaign to get our message out, maybe in a little bit of a different way. You’ll see. And I think it’ll be enormously effective. And I do think that all of these revelations about Hillary Clinton finally are beginning to have an impact.”

Three days later, James B. Comey, the director of the F.B.I., said agents were reviewing emails “that appear to be pertinent” to a closed investigation of Mrs. Clinton’s use of a personal email server while secretary of state.

Mr. Comey said he did not know whether the material was significant but felt Congress should know because he had testified at hearings in July about the investigation.

Against the ceaseless droning buzz of the presidential campaign, Mr. Comey’s revelation boomed like a sudden, unexpected crack of thunder — though a poll by The New York Times and CBS News released on Thursday found that it had not changed people’s minds.

Did Mr. Giuliani have an inside track on the F.B.I.’s discovery of emails, apparently on a laptop belonging to Anthony D. Weiner, the estranged husband of the Clinton aide Huma Abedin?

Oh, not at all, said Jason Miller, a spokesman for the Trump campaign.

“Rudy was just having fun,” Mr. Miller said. “To keep the other side on their toes.”

Since August, Mr. Giuliani has publicly claimed that F.B.I. agents were telling him that Mrs. Clinton should have been criminally charged for the email server.

“It perplexes numerous F.B.I. agents who talk to me all the time,” Mr. Giuliani said during an August interview with Chris Cuomo on CNN. “And it embarrasses some F.B.I. agents.”

Mr. Giuliani has not named the embarrassed or perplexed agents, and as Wayne Barrett noted in The Daily Beast on Thursday, it is a violation of F.B.I. policy for agents to share investigative information.

This week, Mr. Giuliani opened a new front. He attributed what might be seen as a commonplace difference of opinion about law and evidence to rampant corruption at the highest levels of the Justice Department, specifically naming the attorney general, Loretta E. Lynch, who began her career as a prosecutor in the New York area in 1990 and has obtained convictions of politically corrupt Republicans and Democrats.

Mr. Giuliani provided no substantiation of this grave accusation, but instead staked his claims on information that he said came from unnamed law enforcement sources.

“You have outraged F.B.I. agents that talk to me,” Mr. Giuliani said in an interview on Wednesday with Megyn Kelly on Fox News. “They are outraged at the injustice. They are outraged at being turned down by the Justice Department to open a grand jury. They are convinced that Loretta Lynch has corrupted the Justice Department.”

Asked about Mr. Giuliani’s statements, Mr. Miller said that, in fact, the former mayor had not been speaking with any active F.B.I. agents. “He has only had conversations with retired F.B.I. agents who no longer work inside the building,” Mr. Miller said.

So Mr. Giuliani was apparently basing his charges on second- or thirdhand information when he declared, “This is worse than Watergate.”

A bit much? Maybe. But he is giving Joseph McCarthy a run for his money. ... e-fbi.html

FBI fear of leaks drove decision on emails linked to Clinton: sources

By Mark Hosenball | WASHINGTON
FBI Director James Comey was driven in part by a fear of leaks from within his agency when he decided to tell Congress the FBI was investigating newly discovered emails related to Hillary Clinton, law enforcement sources said on Thursday.

The examination of the email traffic is now being carried out under the tightest secrecy by a team at Federal Bureau of Investigations headquarters in Washington, the sources said, requesting anonymity because of the inquiry's sensitivity.

Several sources said it was unclear whether the FBI would make any further public disclosures about its latest review before Tuesday's presidential and congressional elections. Two sources said such disclosures were unlikely.

Another source, recently in contact with top investigators, said: "It depends on how it goes and what they find." The source said that, as of Thursday, "nobody really knows" whether the FBI will have anything further to say before the election.

Dropping like a bombshell on the U.S. presidential campaign, Comey's disclosure last Friday in a letter to senior lawmakers just days before the elections raised questions about his motives and drew criticism from some over his timing.

Comey disclosed that the FBI was looking at emails as part of a probe into Clinton's use of a private email system while secretary of state, without describing the emails' content or how long the inquiry might take. The FBI normally does not comment on ongoing inquiries.

The latest emails examination was moving forward "expeditiously," said one source close to the review.

The new emails turned up as FBI investigators were examining electronic devices used by former Democratic Representative Anthony Weiner in connection with an alleged "sexting" scandal. Weiner's estranged wife, Huma Abedin, is a Clinton confidante.

Two law enforcement sources familiar with the FBI's New York Field Office, which initially discovered the emails, said a faction of investigators based in the office is known to be hostile to Hillary Clinton. A spokeswoman for the FBI's New York office said she had no knowledge about this.

Democratic Party sources said such a faction was likely responsible for a recent surge in media leaks on alleged details of an ongoing FBI investigation of the Clinton Foundation.


FBI examining fake documents targeting Clinton campaign: sources
Trump gains ground on Clinton: Reuters/Ipsos States of the Nation
The FBI has made preliminary inquiries into Clinton Foundation activities and alleged contacts between Trump and associates with parties in Russia, according to law enforcement sources. But these inquiries were shifted into low gear weeks ago because the FBI wanted to avoid any impact on the election.

The FBI previously had spent about a year investigating Clinton's use of the unauthorized server at her home in Chappaqua, New York, instead of the State Department system after classified government secrets were found in some of her emails.

Comey had said in July that while there was "evidence of potential violations of the statutes regarding the handling of classified information, our judgment is that no reasonable prosecutor would bring such a case." ... SKBN12Y2QD

New reports reveal how the F.B.I. relied on an infamous Breitbart source as the basis for its investigation into the Clinton Foundation—and that agents see Clinton as “the antichrist personified.”

Throughout her campaign, Hillary Clinton has battled accusations of fostering a “pay for play” culture at the State Department, giving undue access to major Clinton Foundation donors. So far, Republicans have failed to find a smoking gun, but the narrative has served its purpose: tarnishing the public perception of the Democratic nominee and her family’s namesake charity. For this, no one deserves more credit than Peter Schweizer, Breitbart editor-at-large and the author of Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich. The controversial, mostly discredited book has been held up by many as irrefutable proof of wrongdoing, or at least common venality, by the Clintons. It also found plenty of eager readers within the Federal Bureau of Investigation, The Wall Street Journal and New York Times report, galvanizing a number of F.B.I. agents to launch an investigation into the Clinton Foundation, based mostly on assertions made by Schweizer in the book.

On Thursday, the Journal reported that last summer, shortly after Clinton Cash was published, a number of F.B.I. agents began investigating claims made against the Clinton Foundation in the book, ultimately prompting an internal battle between the agents and F.B.I. and Justice Department officials. The agents secretly recorded conversations with two informants—both of whom were involved in separate public-corruption investigations—about the Clinton Foundation, and believed that they had enough evidence to build a case. Senior officials in the F.B.I. and the Justice Department, however, were skeptical of the evidence and the primary source, Schweizer’s book. Public-integrity prosecutors reportedly “weren’t impressed” and “thought the talk was hearsay and a weak basis to warrant aggressive tactics, like presenting evidence to a grand jury, because the person who was secretly recorded wasn’t inside the Clinton Foundation,” according to the Journal’s report.

The argument is certainly a compelling one. Even Schweizer—whom the Journal reports was interviewed on several occasions by the F.B.I. agents interested in the Clinton Foundation—has conceded that he does not have any “direct evidence” to prove that the Clintons have done anything beyond the pale. During an interview with ABC’s This Week in April 2015, the author said, “The smoking gun is the pattern of behavior,” and when pressed by host George Stephanopoulos, added, “It’s not up to an author to prove the crime.” Schweizer is also hardly without his own agenda. At Breitbart, Schweizer worked under former executive Stephen Bannon, now the campaign C.E.O. for Donald Trump. He is also the president of the Government Accountability Institute, a nonprofit organization co-founded by Bannon that seeks to build criminal cases against political figures. The institute helped publish Clinton Cash, and Bannon co-wrote and produced a film based on the book.


Despite a questionable source and orders from the Justice Department and senior F.B.I. officials to “stand down,” F.B.I. agents reportedly continued to investigate the Clinton Foundation. The Journal reports that the dispute reached a fever pitch on August 12, when a Justice Department official called the deputy director of the F.B.I., Andrew McCabe, to complain about the agents’ continued inquiry, prompting him to ask, “Are you telling me that I need to shut down a validly predicated investigation?” to which the official replied, “Of course not.” The F.B.I. agents, meanwhile, were reportedly furious that leadership seemed to be trying to rein them in. As the Times reports, senior F.B.I. officials originally agreed with the Justice Department to wait until after the election to decide how to proceed against the Clintons. Now, with F.B.I. director James Comey’s decision to publicize the investigation into Clinton’s e-mail server—and the subsequent explosion of leaks and counter-leaks emanating from the agency—the infighting and partisan politics within the bureau are open for all the world to see.

The implications of an increasingly partisan F.B.I. are deeply troublesome. If Clinton becomes president, the bureau will likely become the primary tool of Republicans seeking to investigate her. The word “impeachment” is already on the lips of several lawmakers eager to resurrect the scandal-driven Clinton mania of the late 1990s. And if Trump becomes president, he may find in the bureau an army of sympathetic law enforcement officers ready to assist his political agenda—or vendetta, as the case may be. During interviews with The Guardian, published Thursday, a number of F.B.I. agents described an intensely anti-Clinton atmosphere at the F.B.I., with one characterizing it as “Trumpland.” Clinton, the agent said, is seen as “the antichrist personified” to many people within the bureau, and “the reason why they’re leaking is they’re pro-Trump.” ... -breitbart

THURSDAY, NOV 3, 2016 03:58 AM CDT
FBI takes a page from Breitbart: Far-right “Clinton Cash” book used in Foundation investigation
The New York Times report on the FBI's Clinton Foundation investigation reveals a pretty sketchy information source

The Federal Bureau of Investigation has gone full Breitbart.

OK, not really. But this nugget from a New York Times story on how the bureau kept two investigations under wraps this summer so as not to appear to be meddling in the presidential campaign could lead you to wonder.

In August . . . the F.B.I. grappled with whether to issue subpoenas in the Clinton Foundation case, which . . . was in its preliminary stages. The investigation, based in New York, had not developed much evidence and was based mostly on information that had surfaced in news stories and the book “Clinton Cash,” according to several law enforcement officials briefed on the case.

Oh, neat, “Clinton Cash,” the partisan hit job published last year by Breitbart’s editor-at-large, Peter Schweizer, and later adapted into a documentary that was executive produced by former Breitbart chairman and current Trump campaign CEO Stephen Bannon. Next the FBI will tell us that Roger Stone was the special agent in charge of the investigation.

If you have forgotten about “Clinton Cash,” Digby laid out a nice case against it and Schweizer. The short version is that the book was one in a long, long line of thinly sourced tales about the Clintons that have made millions of dollars for various right-wing writers and publishing houses since the early 1990s. For that matter, these tales sold a lot of copies of the Times as well, when it went all in chasing Whitewater stories early in Bill Clinton’s presidency.

“Clinton Cash,” published just as Hillary Clinton was announcing her own campaign for the presidency, is an obvious effort to cash in early to what will likely be four to eight years’ worth of salacious and worthless investigations of her upcoming administration. It immediately ran into the same problem that dozens of anti-Clinton books have encountered over the years: It contained more bullshit than a waste pond on a cattle ranch. The publisher had to make revisions to the book’s later editions. Schweizer was forced to admit in both interviews and in the conclusion of his book that he had not quite made the case he was trying to present.

Senior FBI and Justice Department officials came to the same conclusion, much to the apparent dissatisfaction of some agents, as the Times reported:

In meetings, the Justice Department and senior F.B.I. officials agreed that making the Clinton Foundation investigation public could influence the presidential race and suggest they were favoring Mr. Trump. . . . They agreed to keep the case open but wait until after the election to determine their next steps. The move infuriated some agents, who thought that the F.B.I.’s leaders were reining them in because of politics.

Or possibly the agents were being reined in because they were being snookered by the right-wing noise machine. The right has been doing this for 25 years — trying to turn the nation’s criminal investigatory apparatus into an arm of the Republican Party for the sole purpose of destroying the Clintons.

And if it can’t get the GOP what it wants? Just this week Rep. Elijah Cummings, ranking Democrat on the House Oversight Committee, mentioned the pressure that Republicans on the committee have been putting on the FBI to turn up something — anything — on Hillary Clinton regarding her private email server and suggested the GOP is going to start investigating the bureau and its director, James Comey, over the agency’s failure.

This latest blowup is simply the newest chapter in better than two decades of Republicans co-opting the FBI and other investigative agencies in service of chasing whatever dark Clintonian shadows they can conjure from the fever swamps of right-wing media and websites. No charge is too spurious or absurd, which is how the nation wound up with the specter in the 1990s of a Republican congressman shooting cantaloupes in his backyard to “prove” that Vince Foster could not have committed suicide.

It is not new, of course, for right-wing demagogues to use the FBI to chase down false and inflammatory garbage. But even with its history, one of the ways the bureau maintains legitimacy as an institution is by giving the appearance of a nonpartisan actor. If its agents are so determined to base investigations on right-wing con jobs that their bosses do have to rein them in, then it will lose whatever moral authority it wants to claim. ... stigation/

Fox’s Bret Baier Walks Back Flawed Reporting About “Likely” Clinton Indictment
Blog ››› 6 hours 55 min ago ››› MEDIA MATTERS STAFF

Fox News’ Bret Baier walked back his November 2 claim, which was based on two unnamed sources, that FBI investigations relating to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton will “continue to likely an indictment.” On the November 3 edition of Fox’s Happening Now, Baier described his comments as “inartful,” acknowledging that “that’s not the process.” Baier’s uncritical reporting of anonymous, unvetted sources has been parroted by a stream of Fox hosts and correspondents, as well as right-wing blogs.

The Daily Beast has reported on a pipeline between conservative FBI agents (both active and retired) -- angered by FBI Director James Comey’s conclusion in July that there was insufficient evidence to recommend any indictment in the review of Clinton’s use of private email as secretary of state -- and Fox News. According to The Daily Beast, “Trump supporters with strong ties to the agency kept talking about surprises and leaks to come -- and come they did.” From the November 3 edition of Fox News’ Happening Now:

MARTHA MACCALLUM (CO-HOST): The FBI sources that you spoke with suggest that an indictment is likely. That would prove -- go ahead.

BRET BAIER: I want to be clear -- I want to be clear about this, and this was -- came from a Q and A that I did with Brit Hume after my show and after we went through everything. He asked me if, after the election, if Hillary Clinton wins, will this investigation continue, and I said, “yes absolutely.” I pressed the sources again and again what would happen. I got to the end of that and said, “they have a lot of evidence that would, likely lead to an indictment.” But that’s not, that’s inartfully answered. That’s not the process. That’s not how you do it. You have to have a prosecutor. If they don't move forward with a prosecutor with the DOJ, there would be, I'm told, a very public call for an independent prosecutor to move forward. There is confidence in the evidence, but for me to phrase it like I did, of course that got picked up everywhere, but the process is different than that. ... ent/214274

The FBI. Giuliani. Of Course.

It's only downhill from here.

NOV 3, 2016

Since the passing of Mike Royko and with the possible exception of Kevin Cullen at The Boston Globe, there is no reporter who knows an individual city as well as Wayne Barrett knows New York. Years ago, when he was writing for The Village Voice and I was starting out at The Boston Phoenix, Barrett was one of the people I read to learn the difference between the alternative press and everything else. He is steeped in the political history of modern New York, particularly the h0istory of the last quarter of the 20th Century and the various ambulatory relics who are still wandering through our politics here in the first quarter of the 21st.

On Thursday, in The Daily Beast, Barrett came as close as anyone has in explaining the Byzantine internal politics of the FBI as regards the presidential campaign. It involves Rudy Giuliani, his pals in the FBI from his days as a U.S. Attorney, and his current role as security jefe for El Caudillo del Mar-A-Lago.

Hours after Comey's letter about the renewed probe was leaked on Friday, Giuliani went on a radio show and attributed the director's surprise action to "the pressure of a group of FBI agents who don't look at it politically." "The other rumor that I get is that there's a kind of revolution going on inside the FBI about the original conclusion [not to charge Clinton] being completely unjustified and almost a slap in the face to the FBI's integrity," said Giuliani. "I know that from former agents. I know that even from a few active agents." Along with Giuliani's other connections to New York FBI agents, his former law firm, then called Bracewell Giuliani, has long been general counsel to the FBI Agents Association (FBIAA), which represents 13,000 former and current agents. The group, born in the New York office in the early '80s, was headed until Monday by Rey Tariche, an agent still working in that office. Tariche's resignation letter from the bureau mentioned the Clinton probe, noting that "we find our work—our integrity questioned" because of it, adding "we will not be used for political gains."
Of course not.

Barrett further identified James Kallstrom, who ran the FBI New York office under former director Louis Freeh, a running buddy of Giuliani. As Barrett demonstrates, Kallstrom has been more than vocal in his dissatisfaction with the fact that no Clinton has yet been clapped in irons.

Kallstrom has, like Giuliani, been on an anti-Comey romp for months, most often on Fox, where he's called the Clintons as a "crime family." He has been invoking unnamed FBI agents who contact him to complain about Comey's exoneration of Clinton in one interview after another, positioning himself as an apolitical champion of FBI values. Last October, after President Obama told 60 Minutes that the Clinton emails weren't a national security issue, Megyn Kelly interviewed Kallstrom on Fox. "You know a lot of the agents involved in this investigation," she said. "How angry must they be tonight?" "I know some of the agents," said Kallstrom. "I know some of the supervisors and I know the senior staff. And they're P.O.'d, I mean no question. This is like someone driving another nail in the coffin of the criminal justice system." Kallstrom declared that "if it's pushed under the rug," the agents "won't take that sitting down." Kelly confirmed: "That's going to get leaked."
Apparently, ever since news of the Comey letter broke last Friday, Kallstrom has been on a kind of victory lap around the various platforms of the Fox News empire. Meanwhile, Barrett got him on the phone and prompted an energetic tap dance.

Kallstrom adamantly denied he'd ever said he was in contact with agents "involved" in the Clinton case, insisting that he didn't even know "the agents' names." He asked if this story was "a hit piece," and contended that it was "offensive" to even suggest that he'd communicated with those agents. When I emailed him two quotes where he made that claim, he responded: "I know agents in the building who used to work for me. I don't know any agents in the Washington field office involved directly in the investigation." Later, though he acknowledged that "the bulk" of the agents on the Weiner case are "in the New York office," even as he insisted that the "locals" he told Pirro would've leaked the renewed probe had not Comey revealed it were not necessarily agents. He declined to explain why Megyn Kelly stated as a fact that he was in contact with agents "involved" in the case. Asked in a follow up email if he suggested or encouraged any particular actions in his exchanges with active agents, Kallstrom replied: "No."
Politics be damned, it's time for the White House and/or the Attorney General, the nominal superiors of everyone who works for the FBI, to come off the bench and break this scam once and for all. This is now for more than just this election. This is law enforcement trying to force its will of the civil authorities, no different from some backwater sheriff who has compromising photos of the mayor.

And, as far as the immediate future goes, this is going to be a stunning chapter when Dante comes back from the dead and writes the definitive history of this campaign. ... -giuliani/

Maddow Examines How Fox's Debunked Clinton Report Began With FBI Agents Presenting Breitbart Hit Pieces As Evidence

Maddow: The FBI "Actually Used That, Anti-Hillary Clinton Book As Their Source For Launching A Local FBI Inquiry Into Hillary Clinton"

RACHEL MADDOW (HOST): This week, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal reported that there has been, I guess you'd call it, like, a breakout? There's been a breakout from this otherwise insular little corner of conservative media and political activism. Those two papers reported that apparently there are fans, there are true believers, there are people who buy this stuff who are working inside the New York field office of the FBI. The New York Times and Wall Street Journal were first to report that the New York field office of the FBI used that anti-Hillary Clinton book, and the DVD of the same name, from the guys, from the editor and his boss who's now the head of the Donald Trump campaign, the one funded by Donald Trump's biggest donor, right? They actually used that, anti-Hillary Clinton book as their source for launching a local FBI inquiry into Hillary Clinton. That was their evidence. That was their research. These agents in the New York field office reportedly decided that they needed to look into what was saying about Hillary Clinton. It all sounds terrible. Sounds totally legit. We should look into that. We're the FBI.

It had previously been reported that New York FBI agents brought this anti-Hillary Clinton Breitbart stuff to a meeting -- excuse me, they had brought this anti-Hillary Clinton stuff to a meeting with career Justice Department prosecutors back in February, and one of the participants in that meeting described it as, quote, "one of the weirdest meetings I have ever been to." But, all we knew before now was that they had brought some stuff about Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Foundation to that meeting. We now know, based on the current reporting, that what the New York agents brought prosecutors at meeting wasn't just generic anti-Hillary Clinton stuff, or Hillary Clinton stuff they had cooked up on their own. No, it was this stuff that had been cooked up at Breitbart. It is the stuff that came from the eco-sexuals having sex with trees website. That is what they had, that is what they brought to career Department of Justice prosecutors, and reportedly the career prosecutors were like, "uhh, where you did you get this? I'm not sure that's a case."

Thanks to lord knows whatever's going on, apparently, inside that New York field office of the FBI, that little adventure, which is now reportedly over, that little adventure of the readers inside this one FBI field office, that's what's out now in today's news five days before the election. That's what was breathlessly reported on Fox News last night based on FBI sources, breathlessly reported on Fox last night as a whole new Hillary Clinton FBI investigation. One that was definitely going to lead to an indictment. ... ces/214289

The FBI Is Self-Destructing at the Worst Possible Moment
And it was a long time coming.

NOV 3, 2016

Of all the astonishing things in an astonishing (and increasingly grim) presidential campaign, the sudden involvement of elements of the Federal Bureau of Investigation in the act of ratfcking a candidacy is even more amazing than the fact that there is a vulgar talking yam one step away from running almost the entire federal government. There hasn't been a hotter hot mess in Washington since John Mitchell was running both the Department of Justice and a criminal conspiracy to obstruct same.

On Thursday, for example, thanks to the folks at Think Progress, we discovered that the Feebs are now investigating their own Twitter account.

ThinkProgress has learned that the FBI's Inspection Division will undertake an investigation of the account. Candice Will, Assistant Director for the FBI's Office of Professional Responsibility, said she was referring the matter to the FBI's Inspection Division for an "investigation." Upon completion of the investigation, the Office of Professional Responsibility will be referred back to the Office of Professional Responsibility for "adjudication." Federal law and FBI policy prohibit employees from using the power of the department to attempt to influence elections.
Yeah, horses, barns, that whole thing. The important thing to remember is that one portion of the FBI seems to be at war with another portion of the FBI and that almost everybody has a gun.

But, by far, the most astonishing revelation has been that, in launching their probe into the Clinton Foundation, the Feebs in charge relied for source material on Clinton Cash, the meretricious hit job by veteran GOP ratfcker Peter Schweizer, as The New York Times tells us. (Schweizer runs a rightwing chop shop founded by Steve Bannon, the Breitbart slug who's running the Trump campaign.) Keep the Times in mind, because it gets better.

In August, around the same time the decision was made to keep the Manafort investigation at a low simmer, the F.B.I. grappled with whether to issue subpoenas in the Clinton Foundation case, which, like the Manafort matter, was in its preliminary stages. The investigation, based in New York, had not developed much evidence and was based mostly on information that had surfaced in news stories and the book "Clinton Cash," according to several law enforcement officials briefed on the case. The book asserted that foreign entities gave money to former President Bill Clinton and the Clinton Foundation, and in return received favors from the State Department when Mrs. Clinton was secretary of state. Mrs. Clinton has adamantly denied those claims.
If that seems a rather anodyne description of the book, it should, because, more than most publications, the Times has a good reason to soft-pedal the impact of Clinton Cash on federal law enforcement. In April of 2015, in an act that both reminded us all of how the Times was Ken Starr's lapdog regarding the Clintons in the 1990s and presaged the abysmal coverage that followed of Hillary Rodham Clinton's campaign, the Times—and, alas, Marty Baron's Washington Post—entered into an unprecedented deal with Schweizer, whose history as an ideological picklock already was well-known.

The Day Political Journalism Died
At the time, we pointed that out to the regulars here in the shebeen, and commented on how that decision was both ethically bizarre and perfectly predictable.

Again, why not just wait until you can order the damn thing on Amazon, rather than climbing under the covers with someone whose CV contains a stint as a hack in the service of Princess Dumbass Of The Northwoods? The answer can be found in the first story that the Times produced under this arrangement.
But Clinton Cash is potentially more unsettling, both because of its focused reporting and because major news organizations including the Times, The Washington Post and Fox News have exclusive agreements with the author to pursue the story lines found in the book.
Got that? The book has credibility because the New York Times cut a deal with the author. Because of this, the author, and his curious resume, are washed in the blood of the Lamb. (It's God's own little joke that Judy Miller's out there shilling for her longform alibi at the same time that her old employers are touting this unique "arrangement.) I will make the Toby Ziegler bet with Carolyn Ryan that her newspaper linked up with this character because her newspaper has had a hard-on for the Clintons from the time it botched the original Whitewater story right up until last Sunday, when its star political columnist went off her meds again.
If you want to find the source point at which the elite political media began mainstreaming dangerous political pollution—which is to say, when the notion of Donald Trump as an actual presidential candidate took shape—you can do worse that pick this particular moment, when the Times decided that we were all just haggling about the price. The pollution has poisoned the election and it appears to have poisoned the FBI into a kind of self-destructive madness.

And there's less than a week left to find the antidote, assuming anyone really wants to look for one. ... ork-times/

The Putin-Trump Axis
A subject FBI Director James Comey has not seen fit to discuss.


Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump supporters march in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images)

For months now, journalists have noted the wrestler Vladimir Putin’s not-so-funny entanglement with Donald Trump. Newsweek, along with USA Today and The New York Times have written about what The Times described as a he-man “bromance” between the Republican presidential nominee (better known in America for wrestling other people out of their money) and the maximum leader Russians know to be no slouch at palling with oligarchs.

Some Democrats think there’s more to it than sexting. Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) goes so far as to say, in a letter this week to FBI Director James Comey:

In my communications with you and other top officials in the national security community, it has become clear that you possess explosive information about close ties and coordination between Donald Trump, his top advisors and the Russian government….

What needs further exploration is another convergence between the crazy right and the Russian. They share crackpot ideas.

In August, I wrote about Trump surrogate Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn’s adventure in cozying up to Putin and RT. It’s not news, exactly, that Trump’s admiration for Putin is boundless. In December, when Joe Scarborough told Trump that Putin “kills journalists that don’t agree with him,” Trump replied:

Well, I think our country does plenty of killing also, Joe. You know. There’s a lot of stuff going on in the world right now, Joe. A lot of killing going on and a lot of stupidity…I’ve always felt fine about Putin. I think he is a strong leader, he’s a powerful leader, he’s represented his country the way — the country is being represented. He’s got popularity within his country. They respect him as a leader, certainly the last couple of years they’ve respected him as the leader. Obama’s in the low 30s, upper 40s, and he’s in the 80s.

Mother Jones’s David Corn now reports that Russian intelligence has been cultivating Trump. This is not hard and fast. What does the FBI have to say? An FBI spokeswoman told Corn, “Normally, we don’t talk about whether we are investigating anything.”

Normally. Except when agency Director James Comey decides otherwise. Comey has been known to make insinuations about the content of emails without having read them.

It’s worth more attention that Russia is meddling in the politics of the still-democratic West.
Whether or not it “becomes clear” what “explosive information” Reid refers to, if indeed it exists, it’s worth more attention that Russia is meddling in the politics of the still-democratic West.

It’s been bruited about that Putin’s strategy is to make trouble for the West in the interest of neutralizing NATO as he goes about his expansionist schemes. It’s a plausible notion on the face of it, but there might be many ways to disrupt the West. Funny thing, though, is the particular method to their meddling. Putin has a characteristic and consistent way of making trouble: backing the far right.

Sometimes that’s with money. In 2014, Marine Le Pen’s nativist National Front received an €11 million loan from the Moscow-based First Czech Russian Bank. This year they’re asking for €27 million more.

Germany’s neo-fascist leader Jürgen Elsässer has likened Russia’s bombing of Aleppo to the successful wartime defense of Stalingrad, but what Germany’s nativist far right gets from Russia in return for compliments is not so clear.

Russia and its allies share not only contempt for liberal democracy but, increasingly, the same enemies list.

Which makes you wonder about WikiLeaks’ email dump before the Democratic Convention. Why did party or parties unknown hack into the Democrats’ mail and not the Republicans?

The ideological affinity between the Kremlin and the nativist right extends beyond foreign policy.
In June after the dump, a British reporter spoke to WikiLeaks chief Julian Assange: “Plainly, what you are saying, what you are publishing, hurts Hillary Clinton. Would you prefer Trump to be president?” Assange told the reporter “that what Mr. Trump would do as president was ‘completely unpredictable.’ By contrast, he thought it was predictable that Mrs. Clinton would wield power in…ways he found problematic.”

Assange has refused to say where he got the emails, but he has denied any Russian hand in the hack. There is some circumstantial evidence of Russian hacker tactics, but nothing conclusive.

The ideological affinity between the Kremlin and the nativist right extends beyond foreign policy. These days the Moscow propaganda network RT sounds like a head start on the hypothetical Trump TV, or like Glenn Beck during one of his diagram days where all arrows on the whiteboard led to George Soros.

Here’s the latest: a headline on a new column by one of their regulars, the American Robert Bridge: “And the Weiner is! Hillary Clinton and the obedient lapdog media.”

Forget the bad pun. It gets worse. Bridge writes: “[T]he US mainstream media is on a mission to prove, despite all indications to the contrary, that Hillary Rodham Clinton would make a squeaky clean political queen.” Here’s Bridge on the mainstream media’s “disastrous effort to protect Hillary Rodham Clinton come hell or high water.” In case you haven’t noticed, the mainstream media have been, in Bridge’s view, neglecting the all-time grand scandal of — wait for it — Clinton emails. And here’s Bridge’s bottom line:

[S]o long as the mainstream media has gained almost total purchase of the election process, heavily controlling what the voters see and hear, we will continue discussing the Russians, WikiLeaks and Anthony Weiner’s unhealthy sexting habit.

Bridge is living in an earlier century, when America’s mainstream media were as controlling as, say, Pravda. Patently, Trump would not object to such a media regime as long as he gets to control TV and the tabloids. If his fan mobs can’t get the job done pointing fingers and screaming at reporters, they’ll be looking for bludgeons.

NOVEMBER 4, 2016
Memo to Comey: Keep Your Damn Hands Off Our Elections

Without a shred of evidence and against the expressed wishes of his superiors at the Department of Justice, the head of the nation’s most prestigious law enforcement agency announced the reopening of an investigation into the mishandling of classified material by Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton. The surprise announcement was delivered last Friday by FBI Director James Comey who knew that the action would create a cloud of suspicion around Clinton that could directly effect the outcome of the election.

Recent surveys suggest that that indeed has been the case, and that Hillary is now neck in neck with GOP contender Donald Trump going into the home-stretch of the bitterly contested campaign.

By inserting himself into the democratic process, Comey has ignored traditional protocols for postponing such announcements 60-days prior to an election, shrugged off the counsel of his bosses at the DOJ, and tilted the election in Trump’s favor. His action is as close to a coup d’état as anything we’ve seen in the U.S. since the Supreme Court stopped the counting of ballots in Florida in 2000 handing the election to George W. Bush.

It is not the job of the FBI to inform Congress about ongoing investigations. Comey’s job is to gather information and evidence that is pertinent to the case and present it to the DOJ where the decision to convene a grand jury is ultimately made. Comey is a renegade, a lone wolf who arbitrarily decided to abandon normal bureaucratic procedures in order to torpedo Clinton’s prospects for election. The widespread belief that Comey is a “good man who made a bad decision” is nonsense. He is an extremely intelligent and competent attorney with a keen grasp of Beltway politics. He knew what he was doing and he did it anyway. It’s absurd to make excuses for him.

In a carefully-crafted statement designed to deflect attention from his flagrant election tampering, Comey said this to his fellow agents:

“We don’t ordinarily tell Congress about ongoing investigations, but here I feel an obligation to do so given that I testified repeatedly in recent months that our investigation was completed,” Comey said. “I also think it would be misleading to the American people were we not to supplement the record.” (CNN)

Let’s take a minute and parse this statement. First: “We don’t ordinarily tell Congress about ongoing investigations.”

True, because it is not the FBI’s job to do so. The FBI’s job is to dig up evidence and refer it to the Justice Department. Comey is not the Attorney General although he has arbitrarily assumed her duties and authority.

Second: “I also think it would be misleading to the American people were we not to supplement the record.”

“Supplement the record”?

That’s a pretty suggestive statement, don’t you think? When someone says they’re going to supplement the record, you naturally assume that they’re going to add important details to what the public already knows. Obviously, those details are not going to be flattering to Hillary or there’d be no reason to reopen the case. So the public is left with the impression Comey is going to produce damning information that could lead to an indictment of Hillary sometime in the future.

This is precisely why normal protocols require that no new investigations be announced 60 days before an election. Why?

Because the public invariably assumes that “investigation” equals “guilt”. In other words, “The FBI wouldn’t be investigating Hillary unless they had some dirt on her. Therefore, I’d better not waste my vote on Hillary.”

This is the logic upon which Comey’s dirty trick rests. He knows the effect his announcement will have because he is law enforcements version of Karl Rove, a bone fide partisan who’s mastered the dark art of political sabotage.

And just in case Comey’s announcement didn’t produce the desired effect (by destroying Hillary’s chances for victory), a former assistant director at the FBI, Tom Fuentes, appeared on CNN shortly after the announcement was made with more explicit information. Here’s a clip from the interview:

“The FBI has an intensive investigation ongoing into the Clinton Foundation,” Fuentes said Saturday, citing current and former senior FBI officials as sources…

According to the CNN report, officials with the FBI and Justice Department met in Washington earlier this year to discuss opening an investigation into possible conflicts of interest between the Clinton Foundation and Hillary Clinton State Department.”

(“Former FBI Official: FBI Has An ‘Intensive Investigation’ Ongoing Into Clinton Foundation“, Daily Caller)

Okay. So we’re no longer dealing with just classified emails. The FBI expanded its investigation and is now wading through the real sewage, the pay-to-play corruption scandal that surrounds that vast reservoir of illicit contributions known as the Clinton Foundation. In other words, the FBI is on to something big, really BIG. I can almost see them dragging poor Hillary off to the hoosegow in leg irons and shackles. Isn’t that the impression the above quote is supposed to produce? Here’s more from Fuentes:

“Several FBI field offices and U.S. attorneys offices pushed for the investigation after receiving a tip from a bank about suspicious donations to the Clinton Foundation from a foreign donor, according to the report….” (Daily Caller)

“Foreign donors”, “suspicious donations”, smoky rooms, bundles of money. It all fits, doesn’t it? It’s all designed to increase suspicion and make Hillary look like a crook which, coincidentally, is the relentless mantra of the Trump campaign. Funny how the FBI and Trump appear to be reading from the same script, isn’t it? It’s almost like it was planned that way.

But what about the timing of all this? Is it really a coincidence or are Comey and Fuentes part of a one-two punch from the Trump campaign?

And, more important, what does the FBI actually have on Hillary? According to Fuentes:

“When the team looking at the Weiner computers went to the team of investigators who worked on the Clinton email case, and showed the emails to them earlier in the week, they said, “This is really significant. We need to take this to the Director.” (2:05 to 2:23 video)

Repeat: “This is significant”.

What’s significant? Neither Comey nor Fuentes nor the more than year-long investigation has uncovered anything, unless you think the ridiculous rehash of the 15-year old Marc Rich investigation (which popped up on the FBI website this week) is “new news” that should alter the course of the election. This is pathetic. If they have something, show us. Otherwise, Ferme ta bouche.

Check this out from Thursday’s Wall Street Journal:

“As 2015 came to a close, the FBI and Justice Department had a general understanding that neither side would take major action on Clinton Foundation matters without meeting and discussing it first. …

The public-integrity prosecutors weren’t impressed with the FBI presentation, people familiar with the discussion said. “The message was, ‘We’re done here,’ ” a person familiar with the matter said.

Justice Department officials became increasingly frustrated that the agents seemed to be disregarding or disobeying their instructions.

Following the February meeting, officials at Justice Department headquarters sent a message to all the offices involved to “stand down,’’ a person familiar with the matter said….

As prosecutors rebuffed their requests to proceed more overtly, those Justice Department officials became more annoyed that the investigators didn’t seem to understand or care about the instructions issued by their own bosses and prosecutors to act discreetly.

In subsequent conversations with the Justice Department, Mr. Capers told officials in Washington that the FBI agents on the case “won’t let it go,” these people said.” (Wall Street Journal)

Can you see what’s going on here? There’s a nest of rogue agents running wild at the FBI who’ve been giving the DOJ the finger while they conduct their witch hunt on Hillary. And what have they achieved?

Nothing! So far, they have nothing.

Now, I’m not a fan of Madame Clinton either, in fact I wouldn’t vote for her if they rubbed me down with bacon grease and stuck me in a bear cage, but, c’mon now, do we really want rogue cops and self righteous bureaucrats inserting themselves into our elections and picking the winners?

That’s bullshit.

If the FBI has some solid proof of wrongdoing that will put Hillary behind bars for good, than I say, “Bravo”. But until then, they should keep their damn hands off our elections! ... elections/

FBI under scrutiny amid speculation over Trump's Russian ties ... a-manafort
Stroke Illiterate Dementia Drugs does not matter

I've had enough of pretending trump isn't completely insane

This Isn’t the Madman Theory. This Is a Madman President
Rick Wilson

The world can not wait for the 2020 election
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Re: The FBI’s Reckoning

Postby seemslikeadream » Thu Jun 14, 2018 4:09 pm

to sum up: Justice Dept Inspector General concluded that bias did NOT affect Clinton email investigation, that FBI had PROPER reasons for declining to prosecute her, and that the only improper actions influencing 2016 election were actions that damaged Clinton, not trump.

Jim Baker, former general counsel for the FBI, told us that a concern about leaks played a role in the decision to send the letter [about reopening the Clinton email probe] to Congress. “The discussion was somebody in NY [FBI field office] will leak this.”


Polly Sigh

Polly Sigh Retweeted Natasha Bertrand
Jim Baker, former general counsel for the FBI, told us that a concern about leaks played a role in the decision to send the letter [about reopening the Clinton email probe] to Congress. “The discussion was somebody in NY [FBI field office] will leak this.”

Natasha Bertrand

Jim Baker, former general counsel for the FBI, said "the discussion was somebody in New York will leak this" prior to Comey sending his letter to Congress reopening the Clinton probe.
Page said there were suspicions that the NY office was leaking Clinton Foundation stories.

Kyle Cheney
Verified account

Source briefed on the IG report says issue of alleged leaks to Rudy about Clinton investigation info isn't limited to what's in this report. More info to come on that later.

Polly Sigh

Apr 20, 2018, @comey to @maddow on FBI investigation into whether Giuliani really knew in advance about Clinton emails.Polly Sigh added,
Polly Sigh

Comey to @Maddow: "We started investigating whether Giuliani really knew in advance about Clinton emails & if there were FBI leaks for politics, I was fired before learning the result."…

A few days after Comey announced he was reopening the Clinton email probe, Rudy Giuliani bragged on Fox News that he knew in advance about the new emails: “Did I hear about it? You’re darn right I heard about it.”

May 2017: Comey confirmed an FBI probe into the matter.

more history ......

GOP Rep. Jason Chaffetz Reported To FBI For Using Potential Illegal Private Email Server
By Jason Easley on Wed, Nov 2nd, 2016 at 1:27 pm

The man who has promised to lead the investigations of Hillary Clinton if she wins the White House, Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) is under new scrutiny for his potential use of an illegal private email server.

The Democratic Coalition Against Trump explained in a statement why they reported Rep. Chaffetz to the FBI:

The Democratic Coalition Against Trump reported Representative Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) to the FBI on Wednesday morning for possibly breaking Executive Order 13526 and 18 U.S.C. Sec. 793(f) of the federal code, which makes it unlawful to send or store classified information on a personal email. As was recently resurfaced by the Democratic Coalition’s #TrumpLeaks program, Rep. Chaffetz lists his personal Gmail address on business cards brandished with the Congressional seal. Rep. Chaffetz sits on the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security, and Investigations, which has jurisdiction over “internal and homeland security,” among other things.

“The mishandling of classified information that concerns the national security of our nation is something that the FBI takes very seriously,” said Scott Dworkin, Senior Advisor to the Democratic Coalition. “The irony is unparalleled- Representative Chaffetz, the person who led the charge against Secretary Clinton’s personal email server use, could actually be the one who is breaking the law and putting our national security at risk in the process.”

It is going to be very difficult for Rep. Chaffetz to investigate Hillary Clinton if he also was using a private email server. The Democratic Coalition Against Trump raises a great point. Why is Hillary Clinton the only person under investigation?

The Russian hacks have proven that the FBI needs to look at all officials who have access to classified information and use private email. If Republicans want to make email use a national security issue, then let’s examine all the members of Congress who are using private email servers.

Rep. Chaffetz is the person who released FBI Director James Comey’s letter about new potential Clinton emails to the public. It is only fair that Chaffetz’s own handling of email and classified information is given the same scrutiny that he is demanding of Hillary Clinton.

Pro-Trump former FBI official says he's channeling agents' rage
By LOUIS NELSON 11/04/16 10:03 AM EDT
A former top FBI official who has claimed insight into the bureau’s rank and file's outrage over the handling of an investigation into Hillary Clinton confirmed Thursday that he has been in touch with active agents after denying it in an interview published earlier in the day.
Jim Kallstrom, who headed the FBI’s New York field office in the 1990s, has spent months citing anonymous sources within the bureau to warn that many there were upset by Director James Comey’s decision to recommend against charges for Clinton related to her use of a personal email server during her tenure as secretary of state. Kallstrom, who has endorsed Donald Trump for president, has suggested in past interviews that he has spoken with active FBI agents, including some working on the Clinton investigation, which if true, would mean the agents broke bureau protocol to discuss a case.

“I know some of the agents,” Kallstrom said in a past interview with Fox News host Megyn Kelly, who had asked him about the FBI’s investigation into Clinton. “I know some of the supervisors and I know the senior staff. And they’re P.O.’d, I mean, no question. This is like someone driving another nail in the coffin of the criminal justice system.”
But according to a Daily Beast article published Thursday, Kallstrom first denied speaking at all to any active FBI agents and said his assessment of the mood of the bureau’s rank and file was based exclusively on conversations with retired agents. But later in that same interview, he said that he did interact with active agents who had reached out to him.
Kallstrom stuck with that story Thursday night on Fox News’s “The Kelly File,” where he disputed the Daily Beast’s assessment that he had claimed to have spoken with active FBI agents investigating Clinton.
“Well, they can write what they want. I never did claim I talked to the actual agents. I would never do that. I would never call up people that were investigating something and even put them on the spot. I wouldn't do that,” Kallstrom said. “But I've talked to hundreds and hundreds of people in the FBI -- mostly retired people and some people that are currently on the job that are not directly involved, but, you know, it's a small organization. You know, they know what's going on.”
“And the agents are furious. And I haven't walked anything back,” he continued. “I didn't walk anything up that deserved to be walked back. So I don't know what they're talking about.”
Kallstrom, a Marine Corps veteran of the Vietnam War, is the founder of the Marine Corps Law Enforcement Foundation, which was the beneficiary of the fundraiser Trump held last January instead of attending a GOP primary debate in Iowa. According to the Daily Beast, Kallstrom’s foundation has received at least three major gifts from the Manhattan billionaire, two of which came during the campaign, totaling over $1.3 million.
Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who Kallstrom told the Daily Beast is "a very good friend" of his, has similarly claimed to have a pipeline of information coming from the FBI's rank and file, offering a similar assessment of its mood to the one Kallstrom has. A week ago, Giuliani teased "a couple of surprises" from the Trump campaign just days before Comey announced that the FBI is examining additional, potentially new evidence related to Clinton's email scandal. He declined to elaborate at the time what those surprises would be, but said they would be "enormously effective."
Jason Miller, the senior communications adviser to Trump's campaign, told the New York Times that Giuliani did not have advance notice of Comey's announcement.
“Rudy was just having fun,” Miller said. “To keep the other side on their toes.” ... z4P3FxWdFH

seemslikeadream » Fri Nov 04, 2016 2:50 pm wrote:
What if FBI Rogues Subvert the Election?
These last-minute false leaks come after decades of animosity toward both Clintons from inside the bureau.
Michael Tomasky

11.04.16 10:53 AM ET
What does it mean that the Federal Bureau of Investigation, or at least a certain number of agents within it, is apparently playing an all-but-open role in trying to elect one presidential candidate—or more to the point, to destroy the other? It’s without precedent in American history. For all the bad that J. Edgar Hoover did, threatening to destroy people’s careers, recording enemies, and developing dossiers filled with dark and unsubstantiated gossip, he never did this. He and his agents never used the media to declare war on a presidential candidate and try to flip a presidential election in the days before the outcome.
The leaks continue with ferocity. There were two big ones Thursday. First, that an indictment is “likely” in the bureau’s investigation of the Clinton Foundation. Second, that there was a “99 percent chance” that Hillary Clinton’s email server was hacked by “at least five” foreign intelligence agencies. These leaks were delivered to Fox News and The Wall Street Journal, among others; Murdoch properties, that is. Fox News’s Bret Baier had to dial the second charge back later in the day. Pete Williams of NBC News, who’s been a rare TV voice offering perspective since the opening minutes last Friday when the report of Director James Comey’s letter broke, was able to quote his own FBI sources last night to Chuck Todd, saying they were telling him the hacking allegation “is just not true.”
True or not, it’s getting out there and it’s getting reported. You may have read Thursday my Daily Beast colleague Wayne Barrett’s interview with James Kallstrom, the former head of the FBI’s New York office, who all but confirmed to Barrett the existence of this orchestrated leak campaign. You may also have seen Spencer Ackerman’s report in The Guardian, where he quoted one source as telling him that the FBI is “Trumpland.”
I don’t have my own bureau sources, I readily admit. But I have a sense of history and context, about the FBI generally and about its longstanding collective and institutional opposition to both Clintons.
In the movies and on TV, and often enough in real life, the FBI upholds and enforces the law and protects us from threats. Most agents are honest and diligent law-enforcement people who do strive to stay out of politics.
But one can have great respect for agents as individuals, and honor the reasons they’re drawn to a career in law enforcement, while still being clear-eyed about the culture of the institution as a whole. As Tim Weiner, who covered the bureau and the CIA for years and whose earlier Agency book won near-universal praise, writes in his new book, Enemies, the bureau has always been accountable mostly to itself.
It was founded in 1908 by Teddy Roosevelt. He couldn’t get a skeptical Congress to appropriate the money for a few police with the Department of Justice, so he just found the money elsewhere and created the force of 34 officers unilaterally. Thus, Weiner writes, “The FBI has never had a legal charter beyond the president’s oath to take care that the laws are faithfully executed, and presidents have strained against the strictures of that oath since World War I,” when the bureau first began to pursue those it classified as dangerous radicals, bending the Constitution if necessary to do so.
More often than not, the bureau has served presidents, especially Republican ones—there have been seven official FBI directors, and not one has been a Democrat. Hoover and Richard Nixon had a contentious relationship in some respects—indeed, the Watergate “coverup” was a coverup of the fact that Nixon ordered the CIA to block an FBI probe into the Watergate break-in. But they shared a basic paranoia about enemies and leftists that found them seeing eye to eye.
This has not always characterized the president-director relationship, though, which brings us to Bill Clinton and Louis Freeh. According to Freeh, he began his tenure trying to get along with Clinton and was spurned; Clinton recalls it differently. Whatever the case initially, by 1998, Freeh was far closer to special prosecutor Ken Starr’s team than Clinton’s. He sent agents to the White House to get a blood sample from Clinton so that Starr could have Clinton’s DNA to match it against that found on Monica Lewinsky’s infamous blue dress. The president was at an official dinner and excused himself, pretending he had to go to the restroom—in fact, he went to meet FBI agents and give up his blood.
Freeh hated Clinton and came to see him, by some accounts, as his top investigative priority. Freeh’s position, stated most publicly in a 60 Minutes interview at the time he released his book, was that he was appalled by what he saw as Clinton dragging his feet on pursuing the culprits of terror attacks on U.S. overseas installations, like the embassy in Dar es-Salaam and Nairobi, and at the Air Force housing complex in Khobar, Saudi Arabia. On the topic of terrorism, though, Freeh was himself rebuked by the Sept. 11 commission for not devoting nearly enough resources to the fight against terrorism; he blamed Congress for not ponying up the funds.
The point as pertains to now is that Freeh baked the Clinton hostility into the cake. It’s also worth recalling that Comey himself investigated both Clintons in the 1990s as a staffer for the Senate Whitewater committee. Now obviously, it may well be that on the merits and in good faith as they see it, today’s rogue agents really do believe that Hillary Clinton is guilty of a crime and should not be president. It’s obviously their right to think that. They live under the First Amendment like the rest of us; they’re allowed to have political opinions.
But their boss closed the investigation. It’s their job as agents to accept that decision. They’re not supposed to be in revolt against their superior’s edict, and they’re certainly not supposed to try to tip a presidential election.
But this is exactly what they’re doing. Writing in The Washington Post Thursday, Paul Waldman put it chillingly well. Noting how the campaign of leaks apparently forced Comey to write his infamous letter last Friday, Waldman argued:
And then it turns out that these agents are basing their investigation on a book called Clinton Cash by Peter Schweizer. Schweizer is the president of the Government Accountability Institute, an organization co-founded and chaired by Steve Bannon. Who is the CEO of the Trump campaign.
While the “imagine if the other side was doing this” argument can sometimes sound trite, in this case it’s more than apt. Imagine if a group of FBI agents were leaking damaging information on Donald Trump in violation of longstanding departmental policy, and it turned out that they were basing their innuendo on a book published by the Center for American Progress, which Clinton campaign chair John Podesta founded and used to run. Republicans would be crying bloody murder, and I’m pretty sure the entire news media would be backing them up every step of the way.
Indeed. Maybe this is partly the Democrats’ fault for not having the high-decibel outrage machine the right has. But should it really take a high-decibel outrage machine for the mainstream media to see clearly what’s going on here? How they’re being played? By a phalanx of actors who have explicitly vowed, as Waldman and Brian Beutler wrote Thursday, that they have no particular plans to honor the results of the election if they don’t like them?
The single most basic criterion that makes a country a democracy is that the side that loses an election honors its result (and yes, this will apply to Clinton if she loses; and yes, Al Gore honored the result in 2000 once the Supreme Court spoke). But it’s now obvious that if Clinton wins, these FBI agents, probably Trump himself, depending on the totals, and certainly Republicans in Congress like Jason Chaffetz will regard the outcome as a temporary inconvenience and immediately begin plotting how to undo it. That isn’t called democracy. I’ll leave you to put your own label on it. ... ction.html

Fox’s Bret Baier Apologizes for ‘Mistake’ in Reporting Clinton-FBI Story

Fox News says its report of a possible Clinton indictment is wrong, but Trump keeps citing it

Rudy Giuliani Confirms FBI Insiders Leaked Information To The Trump Campaign

“Did I hear about it? You’re darn right I heard about it.”

11/04/2016 11:49 am ET |
Mollie Reilly
Deputy Politics Editor, The Huffington Post
Rudy Giuliani said Friday that he knew the FBI planned to review more emails tied to Hillary Clinton before a public announcement about the investigation last week, confirming that the agency leaked information to Donald Trump’s presidential campaign.

The former New York City mayor and Trump surrogate has recently dropped a series of hints that he knew in advance that the FBI planned to look at emails potentially connected to Clinton’s private server. The agency discovered the messages while investigating former Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) for allegedly sexting with a minor. (Weiner’s estranged wife, Huma Abedin, is a top aide to Clinton.)

Giuliani has bragged about his close ties to the FBI for months, mentioning in interviews that “outraged FBI agents” have told him they’re frustrated by how the Clinton investigation was handled. And two days before FBI Director James Comey announced that the agency was reviewing the newly uncovered emails, Giuliani teased that Trump’s campaign had “a couple of surprises left.”

“You’ll see, and I think it will be enormously effective,” he said in an interview with Fox News.

All of this has led to suspicion that someone in the FBI is leaking information to Giuliani and the Trump campaign. The Daily Beast’s Wayne Barrett explored those suspicions on Thursday, detailing how Giuliani’s ties to the agency date back to his days as a U.S. attorney in the 1980s.

Giuliani confirmed that notion Friday during an appearance on “Fox & Friends.”

“I did nothing to get it out, I had no role in it,” he said. “Did I hear about it? You’re darn right I heard about it, and I can’t even repeat the language that I heard from the former FBI agents.”

Giuliani also said he expected Comey’s announcement to come weeks before it did.

“I had expected this for the last, honestly, to tell you the truth, I thought it was going to be about three or four weeks ago, because way back in July this started, they kept getting stymied looking for subpoenas, looking for records,” he said.

FBI officials knew about the newly discovered emails weeks before Comey’s announcement, according to multiple reports.

Giuliani insisted he had nothing to do with Comey’s decision to announce the probe prior to Election Day ― a move that both Republicans and Democrats have condemned. He also insisted his information comes from “former FBI agents.”

“I’m real careful not to talk to any on-duty, active FBI agents. I don’t want to put them in a compromising position. But I sure have a lot of friends who are retired FBI agents, close, personal friends,” he said. “All I heard were former FBI agents telling me that there’s a revolution going on inside the FBI and it’s now at a boiling point.”

Trump press secretary Hope Hicks did not immediately return a request for comment. ... 0b02c93d6b

Fox’s Bret Baier Apologizes for ‘Mistake’ in Reporting Clinton-FBI Story
by Sam Reisman | 1:43 pm, November 4th, 2016 1479

bret-baier-e1467390403723Fox’s Bret Baier apologized Friday for his damning reports about the FBI’s investigations into Hillary Clinton, namely his reporting that an indictment in the Clinton Foundation probe was in the works and that her server had been breached by foreign intelligence multiple times.

Baier had reported on Wednesday about the FBI’s probes into the Clinton Foundation and her use of a private email server. The Fox anchor cited “sources with intimate knowledge of the FBI investigations.”

“Barring some obstruction in some way, they believe they [the investigations] will continue to likely an indictment,” he told Brit Hume. On Thursday morning he clarified that asserting an imminent “indictment” was “inartfully” phrased.

“That just wasn’t ‘inartful.’ It was a mistake, and for that I’m sorry,” Baier told Fox’s Jon Scott on Friday. “I should have said, ‘They will continue to build their case.’ Indictment obviously is a very loaded word, Jon, especially in this atmosphere.” He clarified that prosecutors, not FBI investigators, make the decision whether or not to pursue an indictment based on the evidence.

Baier had also told Hume that the FBI believed Clinton’s private email server had been hacked by five foreign intelligence agencies.

On Friday Baier clarified that he had spoken to “one source” with “certainty that the server had been hacked by five foreign intelligence agencies.” He confirmed that there were still no “digital fingerprints” to prove such a breach had occurred, but noted that the FBI was operating under the working assumption that the server had been hacked.

“All the time, but especially in a heated election, on a topic this explosive, every word matters. No matter how well sourced,” he said. ... fbi-story/

Did Rudy Giuliani Abet the Violation of Public Integrity Rules by FBI Agents?

Top Trump ally and former federal prosecutor Rudy Giuliani has boasted more than once about being in touch with FBI agents who are hot after Hillary. One example, from Oct. 28, via the Daily Beast:

“The other rumor that I get is that there’s a kind of revolution going on inside the FBI about the original conclusion [not to charge Clinton] being completely unjustified and almost a slap in the face to the FBI’s integrity,” said Giuliani. “I know that from former agents. I know that even from a few active agents.”
The FBI's "Ethics and Integrity Program" guide, meanwhile, stipulates to its employees that they may not use "any influence arising from [their] Federal position ... in concert with any campaign." More broadly, it says, "FBI employees must never use their FBI title or position in any way to advance any particular partisan activity."

Does leaking unflattering information about Hillary Clinton to one of Donald Trump's top advisers count as working in concert with a campaign and/or advancing a partisan activity? It would seem that Rudy Giuliani understands that that might be the case, because when he went on Fox on Friday he denied that he's in touch with current agents. "I'm real careful not to talk to any on-duty, active FBI agents," he claimed, despite having attested at least twice in recent months to having done so.

Two days before Comey's letter was released, by the way, Giuliani told Fox News that the Trump campaign was expecting "a surprise or two that you’re going to hear about in the next few days. I mean, I’m talking about some pretty big surprises. ... We’ve got a couple of things up our sleeve that should turn this thing around."

With this and Chris Christie's top aides being convicted of public corruption felonies, I'm beginning to think Donald Trump might not be as committed to the cause of good government as he says he is! ... gents.html

Maybe The FBI’s Love For Trump Has Something To Do With How Extremely White And Male It Is

FBI director James Comey has said he “will have failed” if he doesn’t make the agency less white.

11/04/2016 05:21 pm ET
Nick Baumann
Senior Enterprise Editor, The Huffington Post
The FBI is “Trumplandia,” The Guardian’s Spencer Ackerman reported this week following a series of leaks from the law enforcement agency regarding alleged investigations into Hillary Clinton and her family’s foundation. “Deep antipathy to Hillary Clinton exists within the FBI,” he added.

That makes sense. White men are overwhelmingly likely to support Donald Trump, and the FBI is a culturally conservative law enforcement agency that is overwhelmingly white and male.

The FBI has actually gotten whiter in recent years. As of Aug. 1, 83.2 percent of FBI special agents were white, according to internal statistics. That’s a higher percentage than in 2008. More than 80 percent of FBI special agents are men. Last year, FBI director James Comey joked that the fictional FBI depicted on the television show “Quantico” made FBI agents look more “attractive and diverse” than they did real life.

Trump leads Clinton by 26 points among white men, according to YouGov’s polling model. Of course, the white men in the agency aren’t a perfect mirror of the white male vote nationally. FBI special agents need a bachelor’s degree from a four-year college (Trump also leads Clinton by 14 points among college-educated white men, according to YouGov), and their security clearances and desire to work in public service also make them different from the general population.

Trump would win the election with 493 electoral votes if only white men voted, according to a recent analysis by Mother Jones (using YouGov’s data):

There’s another reason to believe FBI agents are more likely than the general population to support Trump: They work in law enforcement. Trump has courted law enforcement and presented himself as the “law and order” candidate. He’s won the endorsement of the union that represents Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents, as well as that of the Fraternal Order of Police, the largest police union. And top Trump surrogate Rudy Giuliani’s former law firm has deep ties to the FBI Agents Association, which represents the interests of most FBI agents.

“If you think it’s breaking news that the culture of the agents of the FBI is a political conservative culture, that is not news,” says Tim Weiner, who wrote Enemies, the definitive history of the bureau. “The culture of the rank and file of the FBI has been a conservative culture since J. Edgar Hoover was a baby. The FBI was founded in 1908 and it is both a law enforcement agency and now after 9/11 primarily an intelligence agency. It attracts people who served as cops and spies.”

The FBI has a history of discriminating against minority special agents. Hundreds of black FBI employees sued the agency in the early 1990s for racial discrimination. “The higher you go up the agency ladder,” The Marshall Project reported last year, “the less likely you are to encounter” minorities.

The federal government counts anyone whose family origins were in “the original peoples of Europe, the Middle East, or North Africa” as white, so it’s not clear how many people the FBI has hired who have family backgrounds in the Middle East or North Africa. On Sept. 11, 2001, there were only eight FBI agents in the U.S. who spoke Arabic. Five years later, in 2006, the FBI faced criticism when a lawsuit revealed that, despite the agency’s central role in fighting terrorist groups composed largely of Arabic speakers, only a handful of its special agents were fluent in Arabic. There’s no up-to-date, public data on how many special agents are of Arab or Muslim backgrounds or speak Arabic.

Comey has called the increasing whiteness of the bureau a “crisis,” adding that he “will have failed if I don’t change this.” ... c62483f6e4
Stroke Illiterate Dementia Drugs does not matter

I've had enough of pretending trump isn't completely insane

This Isn’t the Madman Theory. This Is a Madman President
Rick Wilson

The world can not wait for the 2020 election
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