Kevin McCarthy Restores Integrity To House Intel Committee By Barring Russia Hoaxer Adam Schiff

Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy kept his campaign pledge to kick former Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff from the permanent panel after the California Democrat spent years weaponizing the institution.

Last January, McCarthy promised he would strip Schiff from the premier House committee if Republicans reclaimed control of the lower chamber. Schiff’s four-year tenure as chair has been marked by remarkable abuse and grotesque politicization, with Schiff spearheading House Democrats’ impeachment efforts through the Russia hoax and allegations of Ukraine-related corruption.

California Democrat Rep. Eric Swalwell was also kicked from the committee after federal law enforcement found the congressman was likely compromised by a Chinese spy.

“I have rejected the appointments of Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell for the House Intelligence Committee,” the speaker revealed on Twitter Tuesday night. “I am committed to returning the [House Intelligence Committee] to one of genuine honesty and credibility that regains the trust of the American people.”

As then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s right-hand man, Schiff has undermined the credibility of the committee since 2019. The congressman was so useful to Democrats, the former speaker chose him instead of Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler to preside over the first round of impeachment hearings against former President Donald Trump.

Congressional Conman

Schiff earned his favor with Pelosi as a star conman who was eager to leak stories about scandalous Russia collusion to allied media, which were thrilled to run claims that weren’t true. Meanwhile, the California congressman never hesitated to brag about having evidence that would land Trump in jail, which has been the No. 1 priority on the Democrats’ policy agenda since 2016.

[READ: The Case For Booting Adam Schiff From The House Intel Committee]

In March 2017, Schiff said on MSNBC that “there is more than circumstantial evidence” that Trump’s campaign colluded with Moscow to capture the presidential election. Schiff would then be disappointed two years later when the Democrats’ special counsel investigation on the subject found that the White House occupant had not been a covert Russian operative.

The congressman’s reaction — to what should have been good news for anyone genuinely concerned about Russian espionage in the form of a presidential double agent — was defiance. Schiff just shook his fist on Capitol Hill and said more would come out.

“In the coming weeks and months, new information will continue to be exposed through enterprising journalism, indictments by the Special Counsel, or continued investigative work by Committee Democrats and our counterparts in the Senate,” he said in a press release. “And each time this new information becomes public, Republicans will be held accountable for abandoning a critical investigation of such vital national importance.”

Of course, Schiff knew efforts to unmask Trump as a Kremlin plant were fraudulent investigations anyway. A 2109 report from the DOJ inspector general exposed how Schiff had been lying about the Russiagate conspiracy since the inception of the hoax.

Pelosi’s Intelligence Committee chairman went on to employ the same playbook for the Democrats’ witch hunt operations surrounding allegations of an illegal quid pro quo with the Ukrainian government and the Capitol riot on Jan. 6, 2021.

McCarthy’s Pledge

As House Republican minority leader last year, McCarthy had been clear he would kick a trio of Democrat lawmakers from committees if he were eventually elected speaker. The move would follow the Democratic majority taking the unprecedented step of dictating Republican appointments in the last Congress. Georgia GOP Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene was stripped of her assignments within a month of her swearing-in, and Pelosi barred Republican appointments to the Select Committee on Jan. 6. Pelosi’s refusal to greenlight McCarthy’s picks for the panel marked the first time in House history that minority appointments were barred.

McCarthy said Schiff and Swalwell were to be removed from the Intelligence Committee, and Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar would be taken off the Foreign Affairs Committee.

The new Republican House speaker defended his decision to follow through with plans for removal on Capitol Hill Tuesday night.

“What did Adam Schiff do as chairman of the Intel Committee?” McCarthy asked a reporter who was shouting questions. “What Adam Schiff did [was] use his power as the chairman and lied to the American public. Even the inspector general said it.”

McCarthy went on to list a litany of lies Schiff told the public while leading the legislature’s most secretive committee. The speaker chastised Schiff for smearing Republican counterparts on the Intelligence Committee as Russian propagandists and seeking to discredit the Hunter Biden laptop.

“When Devin Nunes put out a memo, [Schiff] said it was false. When we had a laptop, he used it before an election to be politics and say that it was false and say it was the Russians,” McCarthy said. “[Schiff] used his position as chairman, knowing he has information the rest of America does not, and lied to the American public.”

McCarthy made clear no Democrat lawmakers would be denied proper seats on committees to represent their constituents, but added that none of the three lawmakers whom he reassigned would serve in roles related to national security.

“They’ll serve on committees, but they will not serve on a place that has national security relevance because integrity matters to me,” McCarthy said.

The Republican House speaker restored committee assignments to Greene and Arizona Rep. Paul Gosar last week.


Tristan Justice is the western correspondent for The Federalist. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and The Daily Signal. His work has also been featured in Real Clear Politics and Fox News. Tristan graduated from George Washington University where he majored in political science and minored in journalism. Follow him on Twitter at @JusticeTristan or contact him at Tristan@thefederalist.com.

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For The Sake Of The Republic, The Church-Style Weaponization Committee Must Answer These Questions

For The Sake Of The Republic, The Church-Style Weaponization Committee Must Answer These Questions

With the establishment of a Church-style committee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government, Congress now has a vital opportunity to hold America’s national security and law enforcement apparatus to account for its corrupt and lawless targeting of perceived political foes.

The House Judiciary subcommittee, chaired by Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, will be fully empowered to investigate the deep state’s depredations across the entirety of the executive branch, covering the full panoply of assaults on our civil liberties, and to take steps to prevent it from ever inflicting such damage on our republic again.

Given the massive scope of the already-known security state scandals, the stakes involved in putting said security state on trial, and the counterassault against the committee already underway, it is imperative that the panel operate in a highly strategic fashion to seize the critical opportunity at hand.

To that end, its planners should give considerable thought to the following questions upfront.

How Will the Committee Define Success? 

How the new weaponization committee defines success should drive every aspect of its planning. In my view, if the panel were to do the following things, it would constitute a rousing victory for the American people.

First, the committee must expose the most egregious and wide-ranging assaults on our civil liberties by the national security and law enforcement apparatus. It must then hold to account the most culpable actors through, at minimum, publicly revealing the full extent of their wrongdoing, demanding their respective agencies take commensurate disciplinary and other corrective action using any tools of compulsion if needed, and, where merited, making criminal referrals — notwithstanding the Biden Justice Department will be unlikely to move on them, in and of itself validating the committee’s work.

Upon doing this, the committee must elicit and, where possible, publicize testimony from witnesses and victims — including whistleblowers and targets of deep-state abuse. This will at least provide victims some form of catharsis as they may never see justice and, relatedly, doing so will demonstrate to the American people the very real costs of deep-state corruption. These steps would help build the political case for what should be the committee’s ultimate objective: to propose and pass laws necessary to prohibit and punish the hyper-politicization and weaponization of the national security and law enforcement apparatus going forward, including, if needed, radically restructuring the apparatus.

What Areas Should the Committee Investigate?

Given the unfortunately target-rich environment said national security and law enforcement apparatus has created in abusing its powers, the finite time and resources with which the committee will be operating, and the stonewalling, subversion, and subterfuge it is likely to face, what are the most critical areas for the committee to investigate? 

Since Donald Trump descended the escalator in his eponymous tower, we have seen the deep state target an ever-increasing number of Americans on ever-widening grounds. The escalation in domestic targeting began with the “narrower” pursuit of “Trump world” on the grounds of purported collusion with a foreign adversary — of being treasonous. It then widened to encompass the targeting of not just conservatives but anyone who would dare engage in “wrongthink” on a slew of issues — from the Chinese coronavirus to critical race theory to radical gender ideology — as dangerous if not terroristic.

Wrongthink has, in effect, become a procedural capital offense, politically in the Jan. 6 Committee’s punishment-by-process of those who dared to question the integrity of the 2020 election and in the Justice Department and federal judges’ like-minded pursuit and adjudication of the cases of Jan. 6 defendants in which their political beliefs in many instances were literally put on trial, and for which they were punished. The Biden administration codified the domestic war on wrongthink with its National Strategy for Countering Domestic Terrorism and has been proceeding accordingly.

All of which is to say, from Russiagate to Jan. 6 to the conspiracies like those between the government and the private sector to silence dissent and violate the First Amendment (as highlighted in “The Twitter Files”) and far beyond, there is more than fertile ground for investigation. This is to say nothing of the weaponization of the security state going on right now that must be unearthed and stopped dead in its tracks — something clearly acknowledged in the committee’s founding resolution, which grants it authority to look into pending criminal cases.

The committee, therefore, should diligently prioritize its areas of inquiry, determine the most efficacious ways to pursue them, discern which agencies and individuals absolutely must be compelled to provide relevant documents and/or testify, anticipate the myriad roadblocks it is certain to face, and plan its response to them.

Who Should Staff the Committee? 

Who should staff the committee, and how will it overcome the onslaught of opposition it will face? Personnel is policy, and it is the personnel, of course, who will be determining the scope of the committee’s inquiries, which leads to pursue, and how best to pursue them. If the wrong personnel are in place, the committee will fail. 

These personnel will face merciless resistance and pressure, if not outright intimidation, aimed at thwarting their work. They will be up against the national security apparatus, the Democrat Party, many Republicans, and the corporate media. Members of the deep state and Democrats such as House Judiciary Committee ranking member Jerrold Nadler have already come out with claims that the committee is McCarthyite, hyper-partisan, provocative, and dangerous — before a single hearing has even been held.

Expect a massive information operation to be run by the deep state and Democrats in conjunction with their corporate media mouthpieces to undermine the committee’s work, replete with a deluge of leaks and lies. 

Republicans tapped for this committee must be equipped to deal with these and other constraints. The committee will also be up against the clock, operating with finite resources and dealing in areas that, by their nature, are secret and sensitive. This will make pursuing evidence difficult and exposing it publicly even harder. 

Republican members tapped to the panel and the staffers they select, therefore, must be equipped to handle these challenges and constraints. They must be courageous, disciplined, and shrewd in how they go about their work. If the committee is to make hay, both members and staff must be eminently familiar with the tactics of the agencies and individuals likely to resist them — from their stonewalling and game-playing with redactions to other dirty tricks — familiar with agency pressure points and where and how they are likely to bury bodies, and steeled against the reprisals professional and personal that might be threatened against them. It would behoove the committee to consult extensively with former members of the national security and law enforcement apparatus supportive of the committee’s efforts, whistleblowers from relevant agencies, and former targets of the deep state as it prepares for the probe.

If members are attacked like former House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes was in pursuing Russigaters, and staffers are targeted for surveillance like his former Russiagate investigator Kash Patel was by the very Justice Department he was pursuing, you will know the committee is doing its job properly. 

The Select Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government should be as zealous and thorough in its pursuit of the tyranny of the deep state as the Jan. 6 Committee was about railroading wrongthinkers.

It must think and act as seriously, strategically, and relentlessly as the malefactors whose efforts it seeks to expose and remedy. The republic hangs in the balance.


Ben Weingarten is deputy editor for RealClearInvestigations. He is a senior contributor to The Federalist, columnist at Newsweek, and a contributor to the New York Post and Epoch Times, among other publications. Subscribe to his newsletter at weingarten.substack.com, and follow him on Twitter: @bhweingarten.

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‘Congressional Trolls:’ Twitter Files Show Company Knew Democrat Claims About ‘Russian Bots’ Were False

A new release of the Twitter Files provides further evidence that the company was aware that claims of “Russian bots” on the platform, made by Democrats and the media, were wildly exaggerated or outright fabrications. Nevertheless, Twitter continued to indulge the Democrat and mainstream media-pushed conspiracy theory in public.

As Twitter attempted to placate Democrats on the hill with an appeasement strategy, humoring claims about Russian influence they knew were false, Twitter officials complained that the strategy amounted to “feeding congressional trolls.”

“Twitter warned politicians and media the[y] not only lacked evidence, but had evidence the accounts weren’t Russian – and were roundly ignored,” wrote journalist Matt Taibbi, who released the latest batch of the Twitter Files.

One prominent example highlighted by Taibbi is when former Congressman Devin Nunes submitted his classified memo to the House Intelligence Committee, exposing FBI abuses in using FISA courts to approve surveillance against individuals linked to Trump, and the critical role played by the discredited Steele Dossier.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein holds her face mask as Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on the second day of her Supreme Court confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill on October 13, 2020 in Washington, DC. Barrett was nominated by President Donald Trump to fill the vacancy left by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg who passed away in September. (Kevin Dietsch-Pool/Getty Images)

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (Kevin Dietsch-Pool/Getty Images)

Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) speaks during the Supreme Court confirmation hearing for Judge Amy Coney Barrett before the Senate Judiciary Committee on the first day of her hearing on Capitol Hill on October 12, 2020 in Washington, DC. With less than a month until the presidential election, President Donald Trump tapped Amy Coney Barrett to be his third Supreme Court nominee in just four years. If confirmed, Barrett would replace the late Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. (Photo by Leah Millis-Pool/Getty Images)

Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT)  (Photo by Leah Millis-Pool/Getty Images)

Democrats including Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), along with Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) claimed that Russian bots were boosting the Nunes report through the hashtag “#ReleaseTheMemo.”

“We find it reprehensible that Russian agents have so eagerly manipulated innocent Americans,” wrote Blumenthal, in a letter to Jack Dorsey, then CEO of Twitter.

But Twitter could not find any significant evidence of Russian bots boosting the hashtag.  “I just reviewed the accounts that posted the first 50 tweets with #releasethememo and… none of them show any signs of affiliation to Russia,” wrote Yoel Roth, who would briefly become head of Trust & Safety under Elon Musk, in an email to colleagues.

“We investigated, found that engagement as overwhelmingly organic, and driven by VITs.” VITs is a reference to Very Important Tweeters — prominent accounts that drive engagement.

Twitter then attempted to persuade Blumenthal that the allegations of Russian bot activity were overblown — only for Blumenthal to release his letter publicly, putting more PR pressure on the company.

“Blumenthal isn’t looking for real and nuanced solutions” but “just wants to get credit for pushing us further,” concluded one official at Twitter.

In addition to calling them “trolls,” Twitter officials compared the behavior of Russia-obsessed Democrats to the children’s story  “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie.”

In the story, attempting to placate a hungry mouse by offering him a cookie only leads to endless demands for more snacks.

“I’m legit embarrassed I didn’t think of that first,” was how one Twitter executive described the metaphor.

Despite mocking the Democrats’ obsession with non-existent Russian influence operations behind closed doors, Twitter made virtually no attempt to warn the public that the “bot panic” was exactly that — a panic, motivated by politics and without basis in reality.

“Despite universal internal conviction that there were no Russians in the story,” wrote Taibbi, “Twitter went on to follow a slavish pattern of not challenging Russia claims on the record.”

Allum Bokhari is the senior technology correspondent at Breitbart News. He is the author of #DELETED: Big Tech’s Battle to Erase the Trump Movement and Steal The Election.

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The Biden Docs Scandal is about DECLAS

The Biden Docs Scandal is about DECLAS


The Biden Docs Scandal is about DECLAS!

Biden is desperate to hide the truth about Ukraine, the Iran Deal, and Russiagate

You’ll notice they waited until after the election was certified to notify the public…

As you might imagine, the Left-wing media have been extremely dismissive of Biden confiscating classified State docs as VP, while un-ironically looking to indict Trump for the same thing, despite Trump being the former Commander in Chief and able to legally declassify anything. The hypocrisy is asinine, yet it is to be expected.

However, this story got exponentially more interesting when the general content of the docs were released this morning. According to CNN, these docs are from 2013-2016 “US Intelligence materials related to Ukraine, Iran, and the UK”.2

This should set off an alarm for everyone, as these are the same contents of the docs seized from Trump at Mar-a-Lago by Biden’s FBI. They were confirmed to be related to the Iran Deal, John McCain’s death, Ukraine and Russiagate (UK, think MI6 agent Christopher Steele).

For those that recall, photos of the Trump docs were inexplicably leaked by the FBI, which revealed the dates on some of the documents, leading us to discover that the docs were about Obama/Biden’s Iran Deal (May 9th, 2018). Later Trump would confirm the docs were about all the things he was trying to prevent Biden from burying.

Now it’s starting to make more sense as to why Trump believed Biden would “destroy or bury” documents related to Russiagate, because Biden had a history of doing so, as we can now see as he had classified documents from Obama’s presidency this entire time.

Now, this timeline of Biden’s behavior around docs pertaining to Deep State activity clearly indicates that he is trying to hide something. As VP in 2016, he hid these docs. And then as soon as he gets control as POTUS in 2021, he weaponized the FBI to reclaim documents from Trump in an unprecedented abuse of power. All over documents that just so happen to be about the same subjects as the docs Biden was already hiding at a think tank.

Biden has been hiding docs that show Deep State crimes since 2013, and then weaponized the executive branch to go after Trump to prevent him from showing the public the truth about Ukraine, Iran, and Russiagate (UK), etc.

Folks… it appears Trump and Biden are warring over the DECLAS docs.

The People of the United States are entitled to see what’s in these documents, so we can find out why Biden is so desperate to keep it a secret.

-Clandestine

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Jake Tapper Moves To Primetime Proving CNN’s Reputation Is Unsalvageable

Jake Tapper Moves To Primetime Proving CNN’s Reputation Is Unsalvageable

It’s supposed to impress Republicans in Washington that new CNN boss Chris Licht has fired a few people at the channel and demoted some others. It’s probably working, but nothing proves how truly meaningless the changes are than that it was announced Thursday that the highly sensitive and monotonous Jake Tapper will be getting a primetime show.

Axios ran no fewer than three stories promoting Licht’s efforts to assure Republicans in Congress that they should give CNN a chance under his stewardship, come back on air and expect an experience far more fair than anything seen at the network for the past five years.

To demonstrate his sincerity, Licht made sacrificial pigs out of toothy Brian Stelter, who ran a Sunday show, and John Harwood, who offered the most unoriginal political analysis, but while standing on the White House lawn so he at least looked important.

There have been some other marginal changes as well, like moving the always hysterical Don Lemon from primetime to mornings (an equally important time slot) and stripping daytime anchors John Berman and Brianna Keilar of their posts.

That these are supposed to be strong indications of anything at all, let alone make up for the freak show that CNN fashioned itself during the Trump years, is laughable. If anything, that Tapper is getting a primetime show, up from his sleepy 4 p.m. slot, amounts to one giant troll of anyone who took Licht seriously.

If CNN executives were genuinely concerned about the channel’s reputation, Jake Tapper would have been the first shoved out the door without so much as a handshake. That emotional jerk has assaulted the ideas of composure and fairness daily on live national television for at least four years.

Recall that in January last year, Tapper reacted to a news alert about some Republicans in the Capitol declining to wear masks by helpfully referring to them as “selfish dipshits.” This is CNN!

Recall that after then-President Trump recovered from Covid, he innocuously tweeted, “Don’t be afraid of Covid. Don’t let it dominate your life.” Tapper summoned his bravery. He couldn’t let such a remark go unchallenged. “It’s OK to be afraid of COVID, and it’s OK that it’s dominating your life,” he said on his show. He also called Trump’s tweet “so disrespectful.” (Shockingly, the segment’s producer did not cut to commercial so he could smack Tapper across the mouth for being so dumb, but instead, CNN clipped it and proudly posted it online.)

Recall that Tapper and his colleagues were the first to launch the Russia delirium with an ominous report in late 2017 that U.S. intelligence had “presented Trump with claims of Russian efforts to compromise him.” After it was finally, demonstrably proven two years later that the Trump-Russia collusion story was a giant fraud, perpetuated in no small part by Tapper, he said, “I don’t know anybody who got anything wrong.”

One part dishonest, two parts moron. He’s like a child found alone in the kitchen next to broken glass, swearing it couldn’t possibly have been he who screwed up.

And when Tapper is not on TV lisping his way through angry, made-up narratives about Republicans intentionally spreading disease or winding his way through another hoax, he’s harassing his critics with private Twitter messages.

Yes, he’s that petty. Ask any journalist in Washington with a blue check on Twitter whether they’ve ever received a worked-up message from Tapper over some minor perceived slight. The answer will invariably be yes.

Tapper is a dork with not an ounce of credibility left to his name. That he is still employed by CNN shows how unsalvageable the whole operation is.

And someone should tell him his oily reverence for veterans reeks of cheap and shallow.


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The FBI Paid For Russian Disinformation To Frame Trump—And 7 Other Takeaways From Durham’s Latest Court Filing

The FBI Paid For Russian Disinformation To Frame Trump—And 7 Other Takeaways From Durham’s Latest Court Filing

The FBI put a contributor to the Hillary Clinton campaign’s Donald Trump smear dossier on FBI payroll as a confidential human source after investigating Igor Danchenko for allegedly spying for the Russian government, revealed Special Counsel John Durham in a court filing unsealed by a Virginia federal court yesterday. The filing contains this bombshell and seven other significant details about the Democrat-led plot to use U.S. intelligence agencies to deny Americans the results of their choice for president in 2016.

The FBI made Danchenko a confidential human source, providing him and the FBI’s use of him “national security” cover, in March 2017 and terminated that designation in October 2020, according to the court filing unsealed on Sept. 13. Danchenko is the originator of the false claim trumpeted all over global media that Donald Trump told prostitutes to pee on beds the Obamas had slept in in a Russian hotel.

The FBI had previously targeted Danchenko, Christopher Steele’s primary source, as a possible Russian agent. But after discovering Danchenko’s identity as Steele’s Sub-Source No. 1, rather than investigate whether Danchenko had been feeding Steele Russian disinformation, the FBI paid Danchenko as a CHS.

Trial for Lying to the FBI to Take Down a President

Danchenko faces trial next month on five counts of lying to the FBI related to his role as Steele’s primary sub-source. One count of the indictment concerned Danchenko’s denial during an FBI interview on June 15, 2017, of having spoken with “PR Executive-1” about any material contained in the Steele dossier. “PR Executive-1” has since been identified as the Clinton and Democratic National Committee-connected Charles Dolan, Jr. Also according to the special counsel’s office, Danchenko fed Steele at least two false claims about Trump that originated in part from Dolan.

The four other counts of the indictment concerned Danchenko’s allegedly false claims that he had spoken with a source whom he believed was the then-president of the Russian-American Chamber of Commerce, Sergei Millian. Danchenko repeated that assertion during several different FBI interviews.

Danchenko’s trial begins next month, but two weeks ago, as part of the pre-trial process, the government filed a “Motion in Limine,” which seeks a ruling from the court on the admissibility of various evidence. While originally filed under seal, the court ordered the docket entry unsealed on Tuesday, making public more details about the case against the Russian national.

Here’s an overview of what we learned yesterday.

Witness: Danchenko Sought to Broker Putin’s Purchase of Classified Intel

While it has previously been reported that Danchenko was a subject of an FBI counterintelligence investigation from 2009 to 2011, the special counsel’s motion revealed more specifics. Specifically, the prosecution explained that “in late 2008, while the defendant was employed by a prominent think tank in Washington, D.C., the defendant engaged two fellow employees about whether one of the employees might be willing or able in the future to provide classified information in exchange for money.”

“According to one employee,” the court filing continued, Danchenko thought the employee “might be in a position to enter the incoming Obama administration and have access to classified information.” Danchenko allegedly then told the employee “he had access to people who would be willing to pay money in exchange for classified information.”

The think-tank employee relayed the information to a government contact, who passed it on to the FBI. The FBI then initiated a “preliminary investigation” into Danchenko but converted it to a “full investigation” after learning Danchenko “had been identified as an associate of two FBI counterintelligence subjects” and “had previous contact with the Russian Embassy and known Russian intelligence officers.” Durham also noted that Danchenko “had also informed one Russian intelligence officer that he had interest in entering the Russian diplomatic service.”

The special counsel further revealed the FBI closed its investigation in 2010 after incorrectly concluding Danchenko had left the country.

In its motion in limine, Durham’s team argues this evidence is important to its case because it will establish that Danchenko’s lies to the FBI were “material.” Specifically, the FBI argues that had Danchenko truthfully told the FBI that he had discussed some of the content in the dossier with Dolan, the FBI might have interviewed Dolan or obtained Dolan’s emails.

That line of inquiry would have revealed the possibility that Danchenko was a Russian asset, the special counsel’s motion argues, noting that “Dolan, on two separate occasions, stated in emails dated June 10, 2016, and January 13, 2017, that he believed the defendant was ‘former FSB’ and a Russian ‘agent.’”

Had the FBI learned from Dolan that Danchenko was connected to the Russian intelligence services, “this naturally would have (or should have) caused investigators to revisit the prior counterintelligence investigation,” Durham argues, and “raise[d] the prospect that the defendant might have in fact been under the control or guidance of the Russian intelligence services.”

While this revelation is spicy, Danchenko’s attorneys will quickly dispatch this argument by pointing out that if the FBI’s own counterintelligence investigation into Danchenko that included the details noted above didn’t “raise the prospect” that Danchenko was “under the control or guidance of the Russian intelligence services,” surely Dolan’s beliefs would not alter the trajectory of the investigation.

Further, because this evidence consists of “character” or “bad acts” evidence, even if it helps the government build its materiality argument, the court will likely rule it inadmissible as “unfairly prejudicial” to Danchenko, meaning that it may cause a jury to wrongly convict Danchenko because of his past conduct, not because of his current alleged crime.

The FBI Paid for Russian Disinformation to Target a U.S. President

A second shocker from the Sept. 13 court filing concerned Danchenko’s hiring as a paid CHS.

“In March 2017, the FBI signed the defendant up as a paid confidential human source of the FBI,” the special counsel revealed in the motion. It was not until October 2020 that “the FBI terminated its source relationship with” Danchenko.

Simply put: Our federal government paid for Russian disinformation to frame the president of the United States for colluding with Russia.

The FBI did this knowing that Danchenko “was associate of two FBI counterintelligence subjects”; “had previous contact with the Russian Embassy and known Russian intelligence officers”; “had also informed one Russian intelligence officer that he had interest in entering the Russian diplomatic service”; and, according to a think-tank employee, suggested he had contacts willing to purchase classified information.

Also, the FBI and Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team continued to use Danchenko as a paid CHS even knowing his stories were fabrications. In fact, Mueller’s team was so focused on getting Trump, it completely ignored whether the Steele dossier included Russian disinformation.

Hillary Paid for Russian Disinformation Too

Not only did the FBI pay for Russian disinformation, so did Clinton, and she did so to interfere in the 2016 election. The public already knew from Durham’s (failed) prosecution of Clinton campaign attorney Michael Sussmann that the campaign paid Fusion GPS for opposition research. Fusion in turn hired Steele to dig up dirt on Trump.

That trial also revealed that Clinton personally approved pushing a smaller aspect of the Russia-collusion hoax, namely the Alfa-Bank secret communications hoax.

From yesterday’s filing we now know the primary sub-source for the Steele dossier paid for by Clinton was not merely a Russian national who fabricated the “intel,” but also a suspected Russian agent. Tuesday’s motion also highlighted the fact that longtime Clinton backer “Dolan maintained a relationship with several high-ranking Russian government officials who appear in the Steele Reports.”

So, for all her vapors over Trump’s connections with Russia and his supposed collusion with Russia to interfere in the election, the evidence shows Clinton holds that dishonor.

Lies, Damn Lies, and Sources

Durham’s motion also revealed what appears to be the “tradecraft” of the spooks for hire, in the form of a February 24, 2016 email Danchenko sent his former boss, Cenk Sidar. Sidar, who ran the business intelligence firm Sidar Globak, asked Danchenko to review a report he had prepared.

After reviewing the draft, Danchenko emailed Sidar recommendations on how to improve the report, including the following suggestion: “Emphasize sources. Make them bold or CAPITALISED. The more sources the better. If you lack them, use oneself as a source (‘Istanbul-Washington-based businessman’ or whatever) to save the situation and make it look a bit better.”

The government seeks to admit this email to show that Danchenko followed a similar or “common plan” when working for Steele by creating sources “to save the situation,” such as what the prosecution maintains Danchenko did with Millian. This argument holds merit, and the trial court accordingly will likely allow Durham’s team to tell the jury about the email.

The FBI’s ‘Investigation’ Makes Maxwell Smart Look Like Jack Ryan

While corruption may be a better explanation than incompetence, either way the special counsel’s brief leaves the FBI looking like fools. First, the bureau closed an investigation on a suspected Russian asset after wrongly thinking Danchenko had left the country. Then the FBI paid that suspected Russian agent to serve as a confidential human source, with Danchenko then telling agents a litany of lies, including ones that should have been obvious.

For example, as the motion highlights, Danchenko claimed to agents that Millian might be the source for the “pee-tape” info. But those allegations appeared in Steele’s report dated June 20, 2016, and Danchenko “repeatedly informed the FBI that the first and only time he allegedly communicated with Millian was late July 2016.”

“Put bluntly,” the special counsel wrote, “these facts demonstrate that the defendant could not keep his lies straight, and that the defendant engaged in a concerted effort to deceive the FBI about the sourcing (or lack thereof) of the Steele Reports.” Unless they were corrupt, this indicates the FBI agents investigating Trump were a bunch of incompetent boobs.

The special counsel’s team further exposed the incompetence (or corruption) of the FBI when it introduced the public to Bemd Kuhlen, a German citizen who served as the general manager of the Ritz-Carlton Moscow in June 2016, when the pee-tape tale was purportedly sourced. The Steele dossier described the source as “a senior (western) member of staff at the hotel.”

According to Durham, Kuhlen is prepared to testify at Danchenko’s trial that at the time he was the only “western” member of management at the hotel. Kuhlen will also testify that he never heard any story resembling Steele’s reporting until it became public and never discussed those claims with Danchenko.

If six years after the fact prosecutors could locate and question Kuhlen, the Crossfire Hurricane team could have done the same for Steele’s reporting, quickly disproving the dossier. If they wanted to, that is.

Steele Was Duped—That’s Our Story and We’re Sticking to It

Yesterday’s motion revealed another unsettling fact: Prosecutors appear poised to continue with the company storyline that Steele and in turn the FBI were duped. In its motion, the government notes that Danchenko “informed Steele that he met in person with Sergei Millian on two or three occasions,” and that Danchenko “subsequently informed the FBI that he had not in fact met with Millian on any occasion.”

So, how does the special counsel address this discrepancy? Danchenko “further stated to the FBI that Steele incorrectly believed the defendant had met in-person with Millian” and that “Danchenko had not corrected Steele in that misimpression.” It was all just a big misunderstanding, folks, until Danchenko lied to the FBI.

This short section of the motion shows Durham does not intend to expose the FBI’s complicity at Danchenko’s trial. While Durham may not want to put the FBI on trial, Danchenko has made clear that he intends to. Unless the special counsel’s team acknowledges the FBI’s role in the Russia collusion hoax, Danchenko will likely score the second acquittal.

Star Witness Says, ‘No, Thanks’ To Testifying

Four of the five counts against Danchenko concern Danchenko’s allegedly false statements to the FBI about a telephone conversation Danchenko claimed he had with an individual he thought was Millian. Under these circumstances, Millian would seem to be a star witness for Durham. But in the motion in limine, the special counsel revealed that Millian refuses to testify because of “concerns for his and his family’s safety (who reside abroad)” and because “he does not trust the FBI and fears being arrested if he returns to the United States.”

While “the Government has repeatedly informed Millian that it will work to ensure his security during his time in the United States, as it does with all witnesses,” Millian remains firm in his refusal. And who can blame him? Even if Durham can provide physical security for Millian, Durham doesn’t run the Department of Justice. As the recent raid on Trump’s home shows, the deep state will go to great lengths to get its enemies.

After establishing that it used its best efforts to arrange for Millian to testify at Danchenko’s trial, the government argues that because he is “unavailable,” as that term is legally understood, three emails Millian wrote to a friend are admissible, even if they are hearsay. Those emails show that a mutual acquaintance attempted to connect Millian and Danchenko and that Millian later figured out Danchenko was Steele’s source who invented the story of the phone call.

The government presents a persuasive argument that these emails should be admitted at trial, and the court will likely agree, meaning Millian’s prudent absence from the trial is unlikely to prompt an acquittal.

Strange Cyprus Things

A final takeaway from yesterday’s filing stems from the special counsel’s mention of Cyprus.

“On June 10, 2016, Dolan, while in Cyprus meeting with Olga Galkina (another source for the defendant), emailed a U.S.-based acquaintance regarding efforts to assist the defendant in obtaining a U.S. visa,” the motion says. It quotes the email: “Monday night I fly to Moscow and will meet with a Russian guy who is working with me on a couple of projects. He also works for a group of former MI 6 guys in London who do intelligence for business …. [H]e owes me as his Visa is being held up and I am having a word with the Ambassador.”

The special counsel’s office included these details to establish that Danchenko had lied to the FBI about facts beyond those contained in the indictment. This helps Durham’s case by showing Danchenko’s allegedly false statements were not mere mistakes. The reference to Cyprus, however, also raises an entirely new set of questions.

In addition to Dolan’s presence in Cyprus on June 10, 2016, where he met with another of Danchenko’s sources, we have a June 1, 2016 email to President Obama’s undersecretary for State Victoria Nuland noting that “Kathleen [Kavalec] is recommending [she] look at the first 10 days of July for a Cyprus trip.” Nuland made the trip on July 12, 2016.

On July 1, 2016, Steele emailed the DOJ’s Bruce Ohr, noting that Steele was traveling to Cyprus with his family on holiday from July 9 to 16, 2016.

Nuland’s presence in Cyprus at the same time as Steele seems a tad too coincidental to ignore. After all, Nuland, who “served as Kavalec’s boss at the bureau of European and Eurasian affairs, was the government official who approved an FBI agent in Rome meeting Steele in early July 2016.” Steele would later also meet with Kavalec in D.C. in October 2016 about his Trump reporting. Jonathan Winer, who knew Steele since 2009 and reportedly met with Steele in the Summer of 2016, appears to have arranged the Steele-Kavalec meeting.

The overlapping players and timeframe demand answers. Did Steele meet with Nuland in Cyprus? If so, was Steele alerted to Nuland’s travel plans? What did the duo discuss? Did Steele or Nuland meet with Dolan or the Cyprus sub-source?

While Cyprus may well be a nothingburger, the FBI launched a full investigation into Trump’s presidential campaign on less.

It’s extremely unlikely that Danchenko’s trial will answer any of these Cyprus questions. But future filings and the anticipated week-plus trial may fill in some of the other Spygate blanks.


Margot Cleveland is The Federalist’s senior legal correspondent. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

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Exclusive — Lee Smith: People I Trust Say FBI Raid Was Search for Russiagate Documents at Mar-a-Lago

Exclusive — Lee Smith: People I Trust Say FBI Raid Was Search for Russiagate Documents at Mar-a-Lago

Columnist Lee Smith, author of The Plot Against the President: The True Story of How Congressman Devin Nunes Uncovered the Biggest Political Scandal in U.S. History, said colleagues and peers of his — whose judgment he trusts — speculate that the FBI’s raid of former President Donald Trump’s private residence at Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, FL, was a search for documents related to its “Russiagate” surveillance operation of the 45th president.

“I think the best way to understand this is in the context of a six-year-long operation targeting Donald Trump, Donald Trump’s aides, and Donald Trump’s supporters,” Smith said on SiriusXM’s Breitbart News Sunday with host Joel Pollak. “I have different colleagues and people whose insight and whose wisdom I trust very much, and they believe that what the FBI was looking for were documents related to … what the FBI called the Crossfire Hurricane investigation, but what most most of the rest of us know as the Russiagate operation meant to target candidate Trump, then President-elect Trump, and then President Donald J. Trump.”

Smith said the people whose speculation he was relaying “have much more insight” and “much more knowledge” about the FBI’s operations than he.

Smith noted that many of the FBI agents organizing the raid on Mar-a-Lago have been involved in the FBI’s ostensible investigation of Trump for years. He recalled a report from RealClearInvestigations titled, “FBI Unit Leading Mar-a-Lago Probe Earlier Ran Discredited Trump-Russia Investigation.”

He said political observers should view the FBI’s raid of Mar-a-Lago “as part of something that started in the spring and summer of 2016 … or perhaps earlier.” He added, “This was the effort to get Donald Trump.”

The FBI’s surveillance of Trump, Smith maintained, must have been known to former President Barack Obama given its launch during the Obama administration.

“We need to remember these [are] intelligence agencies that Hillary Clinton was using to spy on the Trump campaign and to smear the Trump campaign,” he remarked. “This was in the Obama administration. There is no way that any of this happened without the White House knowing about it.”

Smith said it was “good news” that whistleblowers within the FBI and U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) provided information to Sen. Chuck Grassley’s (R-IA) office about political and partisan internal efforts to suppress information about Hunter Biden.

The existence of whistleblowers within the FBI and DOJ, Smith surmised, could lead to some restraint among the bureaucracies’ worst “anti-Trump” operatives due to fear of exposure.

He remarked, “Thanks to the whistleblowers — and to thanks to Charles Grassley’s letters — now we have anti-Trump operatives at the DOJ and the FBI worried about who they can trust. Under our circumstances at present, that’s very important, and it’s very good news, because we want them looking at each other. We want them fearful of each other. We want them suspicious.”

“These are regime conditions,” he continued. “It’s not a constitutional order. In a constitutional order, corrupt federal law enforcement officers would be charges, tried, and if found guilty, convicted, but we don’t live under those circumstances, right now. It’s a different time for Americans. It’s a sad and tragic time, but we have to make do with what we have, because we’re Americans.”

Smith described the political and partisan weaponization of the DOJ and FBI as illustrative of the descent of America’s governance into a “regime” framework as opposed to a “constitutional order.” Whistleblowers within the government can create deterrence against further governmental abuses, he assessed.

“Whatever can be done to provoke more splits in law enforcement [and] more splits in our adversaries” is desirable, he maintained.

He concluded, “America has never been like this. We look at how actual corrupt third world regimes operate. That’s how we learn how to defend ourselves, how to advance our interests, and how to deter them while we’re working to restore our constitutional order.”

Breitbart News Tonight broadcasts live on SiriusXM Patriot channel 125 weeknights from 9:00 p.m. to midnight Eastern or 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Pacific.

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DOJ Official Who Targeted Trump for FBI Raid is Dem Donor, Assoc of Mueller’s ‘Pit Bull’



DOJ Official Who Targeted Trump for FBI Raid is Dem Donor, Assoc of Mueller’s ‘Pit Bull’

Behind Weaponizing Justice Department

Becker News

The FBI’s raid on Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate was directly approved and overseen by Justice Department officials with deep ties to Russiagate, as reported earlier. But there is surfacing evidence that those ties are more direct and extensive than previously believed.

A RealClearInvestigations review of the agents involved in the FBI’s Trump raid has found that the anti-Trump operation was run primarily by the Washington Field Office and not the Miami Field Office. The Washington Field Office is deeply enmeshed in the FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane operation from 2016-2017, which featured laundered Clinton oppo research and FISA surveillance warrant abuse in a scandal that its critics refer to as ‘Spygate.’

The Washington Field Office was also remarkably lax in its prevention of the January 6 siege carried out by far-right extremists. It has since come out in court documents that the FBI had more agents embedded at the capitol during the Capitol riots than previously known. As FBI Director Wray conceded in an exchange with Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) during Senate testimony in August, the bureau promoted Steven D’Antuono,  the special agent in charge of the Detroit Field Office, to become the assistant director in charge of the Washington Field Office in October 2020. That was the same month the FBI had announced the Whitmer kidnapping plot.

The Washington Field Office has thus been highly involved in many of the most politically charged, high profile cases in recent U.S. history. The RealClear Investigations piece raises some intriguing names involved in the recent, unprecedented raid on a former president that followers of the Russiagate scandal should be familiar with.

“An examination of the bureau agents involved in the Mar-a-Lago raid reveals other connections between them and FBI officials who played key roles in advancing the Russiagate hoax,” Paul Sperry writes.

“Sources told RealClearInvestigations that Jay Bratt, the top counterintelligence official in Justice’s national security division, who happens to be a Democratic National Committee donor, has been coordinating the Mar-a-Lago investigation with Alan Kohler, who heads the FBI’s counterintelligence division,” Sperry adds.

The critical thing to note about Bratt, as was noted in an anonymous tip from Truth Ninja, is that he was a “resource of the Mueller investigation and worked directly with Andrew Weissman.” Russiagate followers will recall Andrew Weissman, nicknamed as ‘Mueller’s pit bull.”

Jay Bratt played a critical role in preparing the terrain at Mar-a-Lago in June for the FBI raid in August.

“Bratt, the top counterintelligence official at Justice, traveled to Mar-a-Lago in early June and personally inspected the storage facility while interacting with both Trump and one of his lawyers,” Sperry notes. “Trump allowed the three FBI agents Bratt brought with him to open boxes in the storage room and look through them. They left with some documents. After leaving, Bratt made a request to Trump’s lawyer for increased security at the facility and asked to see surveillance footage from the security cameras. The lawyer complied with the requests.”

“Months went by before the Justice Department took the politically explosive step of sending FBI agents unannounced to Trump’s home, seizing documents, photos, and other items not just from the storage facility but from multiple rooms on the property, including the former president’s office,” Sperry adds.

The RealClearInvestigations story draws parallels between the DOJ’s recent “weaponization” of the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) against Trump officials and the invocation of the Presidential Records Act (PRA) as a pretext for the FBI raid, despite it being a civil act and not a criminal statute.

It turns out that Bratt is a close associate of David Laufman, who has been dubbed the ‘mastermind’ behind the legal strategy of using FARA to attack political enemies.

“According to Federal Election Commission records, Bratt has given exclusively to Democrats, including at least $800 to the Democratic National Committee,” the report notes. “The sources said he is close to David Laufman, whom he replaced as the top counterintelligence official at Justice. An Obama donor, Laufman helped oversee the Russiagate probe, as well as the Clinton email case, which also involved classified information.”

Of course, it is no small coincidence that Bruce Reinhart, the Florida judge who signed off on the search warrant that authorized the FBI raid on Donald Trump, recused himself from Donald Trump’s lawsuit against Hillary Clinton for slanderous Russia collusion accusations. The judge never divulged what prevented him from handling the case.

On August 9th, Paul Sperry noted the “conflicted” DOJ officials who were briefed on the FBI’s raid of Mar-a-Lago.

Conflicted DOJ officials briefed on the Mar-a-Lago raid:

NICHOLAS McQUAID: worked at same law firm with both Hunter Biden’s criminal attorney and Michael Sussmann’s criminal attorney

LISA MONACO: Obama aide implicated in Russiagate

MAGGIE GOODLANDER: wife of top Biden aide Jake Sullivan, implicated in Russiagate

In a review of conflicts of interest and political bias at the Department of Justice, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) explicitly listed  Nicholas McQuaid as an official of concern.

Michael Sussmann, of course, was recently named by the Durham investigation as having allegedly misled the FBI about the infamous ‘backdoor server‘ to Alfa Bank, which was a claim echoed by Hillary Clinton herself during the 2016 campaign. Sussman had approached the FBI’s general counsel James Baker in a September 2016 meeting with a tip provided in a personal fashion, as opposed to explicitly on behalf of the Clinton campaign that he worked for. The Washington D.C. federal jury acquitted Sussmann in part because it was presumed that some FBI agents knew he was working with the Clinton campaign.

Lisa Monaco, who was President Obama’s top homeland security and counterterrorism adviser, and former chief of staff for prior FBI director Robert Mueller, was deeply aware of the Russiagate operations during the 2016 campaign. She is implicated as one of the Justice Dept. officials to have given the go-ahead to carry out the FBI raid on Mar-a-Lago.  It has not been independently corroborated what role Maggie Goodlander may have played in the Mar-a-Lago raid.

But more importantly, as reported earlier at Becker News, the direct involvement of Alan Kohler in the FBI investigation of Donald Trump is a red thread to the discredited Russiagate investigation.

The FBI’s current deputy director for counterintelligence Alan Kohler is a Russian area specialist who is believed by some as having been involved in deploying foreign nationals to spy on the Trump campaign during the 2016 election.

In May 2019, Mollie Hemingway of “The Federalist” tied Alan Kohler to a 2011 Cambridge conference with Stefan Halper, whom the New York Times reported was ‘handpicked by a seasoned FBI counterintelligence agent out of the New York office.’ Kohler’s official FBI biography places him with the New York field office until he was transferred to London in 2012, where he acted as a liaison with British intelligence.

“Following months of angry claims by journalists and Democratic operatives that the Obama administration never spied on Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, The New York Times admitted… that multiple overseas intelligence assets were deployed against associates of the Republican nominee,” Hemingway writes. “It is not the first time the Times has revealed widespread spying operations against the campaign.

“The three agents publicly identified as speaking at that conference on the topic are George J. Ennis, Jr., Alan E. Kohler, Jr., and Stephen M. Somma. Ennis currently serves as the special agent in charge in the FBI’s New York office, according to his LinkedIn profile, and worked closely with Preet Bharara, former U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, a virulent anti-Trump activist whom the president fired in 2017,” she continued.

“The public schedule for a 2014 conference led by Halper shows that Kohler also spoke to the same group about the same Russian case on May 9, 2014,” she added.

“Alan Kohler the FBI representative at the United States Embassy in London will talk about the challenges of modern counter espionage: including the case of Anna Chapman and other Russian illegals,” the schedule noted.

The RealClearInvestigations piece also notes the involvement of Supervisory Intelligence Analyst Brian Auten in the politically charged investigation of Hunter Biden’s laptop, despite his participation on a Crossfire Hurricane team that is the subject of Special Counsel John Durham’s probe.

The FBI’s Washington Field Office is again deeply implicated in a politically charged investigation of Donald Trump ahead of a national election. It is another black mark on a troubling track record of partisan investigation of the Democratic Party’s political opponents. One way or another, it needs to come to a stop.

Unfortunately for the Department of Justice, responsibility for the unprecedented raid on a former president rises to the very top. As Attorney General Merrick Garland said, he “personally approved” of the raid. It is one reason why there is already a resolution filed in Congress for his impeachment.

_________

RELATED

GOP Rep. Files Articles of Impeachment Against Attorney General Merrick Garland

***********

(TLB) published this article from Becker News as compiled and written by Kyle Becker

Header featured image (edited) credit: Jay Bratt/cybersecuritysummit.com

Emphasis added by (TLB) editors

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