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Ironduke
10 May 17,, 08:14
Just breaking in the last few hours.

http://www.cnn.com/2017/05/09/politics/james-comey-fbi-trump-white-out/index.html

We're living in interesting times.

Doktor
10 May 17,, 10:46
Damn if you do, damn if you don't

43811

Parihaka
10 May 17,, 11:07
MEMORANDUM FOR THE ATTORNEY GENERAL (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/james-comey-fired-memo-letter-in-full-rod-rosenstein-read-trump-sacks-fbi-director-a7727246.html)


FROM: ROD J. DEPUTY ATTORNEY GENERAL SUBJECT: RESTORING PUBLIC CONFIDENCE IN THE FBI

The Federal Bureau of Investigation has long been regarded as our nation’s premier federal investigative agency. Over the past year, however, the FBl’s reputation and credibility have suffered substantial damage, and it has affected the entire Department of Justice. That is deeply troubling to many Department employees and veterans, legislators and citizens. The current FBI Director is an articulate and persuasive speaker about leadership and the immutable principles of the Department of Justice. He deserves our appreciation for his public service. As you and I have discussed, however, I cannot defend the Director’s handling of the conclusion of the investigation of Secretary Clinton's emails, and I do not understand his refusal to accept the nearly universal judgment that he was mistaken. Almost everyone agrees that the Director made serious mistakes; it is one of the few issues that unites people of diverse perspectives. The Director was wrong to usurp the Attorney General’s authority on July 5, 2016, and announce his conclusion that the case should be closed without prosecution. It is not the function of the Director to make such an announcement. At most, the Director should have said the FBI had completed its investigation and presented its findings to federal prosecutors.


The Director now defends his decision by asserting that he believed Attorney General Loretta had a conflict. But the FBI Director is never empowered to supplant federal prosecutors and assume command of the Justice Department. There is a well-established process for other officials to step in when a conflict requires the recusal of the Attorney General. On July 5, however, the Director announced his own conclusions about the nation’s most sensitive criminal investigation, without the authorization of duly appointed Justice Department leaders. Compounding the error, the Director ignored another longstanding principle: we do not hold press conferences to release derogatory information about the subject of a declined criminal investigation. Derogatory information sometimes is disclosed in the course of criminal investigations and prosecutions, but we never release it gratuitously. The Director laid out his version of the facts for the news media as if it were a closing argument, but without a trial. It is a textbook example of what federal prosecutors and agents are taught not to do.

In response to sceptical questions at a congressional hearing, the Director defended his remarks by saying that his goal was to say what is true. What did we do, what did we find, what do we think about it. But the goal of a federal criminal investigation is not to announce our thoughts at a press conference. The goal is to determine whether there is sufficient evidence to justify a federal criminal prosecution, then allow a federal prosecutor who exercises authority delegated by the Attorney General to make a prosecutorial decision, and then if prosecution is warranted - let the judge and jury determine the facts. We sometimes release information about closed investigations in appropriate ways, but the FBI does not do it sua sponte.

Concerning his letter to the Congress on October 28, 2016, the Director cast his decision as a choice between whether he would speak about the decision to investigate the newly-discovered email messages or conceal it. Conceal is a loaded term that necessitates the issue. When federal agents and prosecutors quietly open a criminal investigation, we are not concealing anything; we are simply following the longstanding policy that we refrain from publicizing non-public information. In that context, silence is not concealment.


My perspective on these issues is shared by former Attorneys General and Deputy Attorneys General from different eras and both political parties. Judge Laurence Silberman, who served as Deputy Attorney General under President Ford, wrote that it is not the bureau’s responsibility to opine on whether a matter should be prosecuted. Silbertnan believes that the Director’s performance was so inappropriate for an FBI director that [he] doubt[s] the bureau will ever completely recover. Jamie Gorelick, Deputy Attorney General under President Clinton, joined with Larry Thompson, Deputy Attorney General under President George W. Bush, to opine that the Director had chosen personally to restrike the balance between transparency and fairness, departing from the department’s traditions. They concluded that the Director violated his obligation to preserve, protect and defend the traditions of the Department and the FBI.

Former Attorney General Michael Mukasey, who served under President George W. Bush, observed that the Director stepped way outside his job in disclosing the recommendation in that fashion“ because the FBI director doesn’t make that decision.” Alberto Gonzales, who also served as Attorney General under President George W. Bush, called the decision an error in judgement. Eric Holder, who served as Deputy Attorney General under President Clinton and Attorney General under President Obama, said that the Director’s decision was incorrect. It violated long-standing Justice Department policies and traditions. And it ran counter to guidance that I put in place four years ago laying out the proper way to conduct investigations during an election season. Holder concluded that the Director broke with these fundamental principles and negatively affected public trust in both the Justice Department and the FBI.

Former Deputy Attorneys General Gorelick and Thompson described the unusual events as real-time, raw-take transparency taken to its illogical limit, a kind of reality TV of federal criminal investigation, that is antithetical to the interests of justice. Donald Ayer, who served as Deputy Attorney General under President George HW. Bush, along with other former Justice Department officials, was astonished and perplexed by the decision to break with longstanding practices followed by officials of both parties during past elections. Ayer’s letter noted, Perhaps most troubling is the precedent set by this departure from the Department’s widely-respected, non-partisan traditions. We should reject the departure and return to the traditions. Although the President has the power to remove an FBI director, the decision should not be taken I agree with the nearly unanimous opinions of former Department officials. The way the Director handled the conclusion of the email investigation was wrong. As a result, the FBI is unlikely to regain public and congressional trust until it has a Director who understands the gravity of the mistakes and pledges never to repeat them. Having refused to admit his errors, the Director cannot be expected to implement the necessary corrective actions.

Ironduke
10 May 17,, 12:01
I liked Comey. He seemed to me to be a man of integrity trying to do the right thing, with no where but missteps to make navigating these minefields, being forced, as a requirement of his job, to investigate obviously guilty politicians who have zero integrity.

In DC there are the crooked politicians who play these games of character assassination and the politics of personal destruction, and down Comey went. He may yet though be even more powerful and capable in his position as ex-Director.

I think his honest testimony, in time, combined with being freed from the constraints of his position as director, will be quite interesting.

I'm looking forward to Comey Unchained.

astralis
10 May 17,, 15:05
Comey seems to be someone you want as a #2, not a #1. his congressional testimony where he went through his thought process had a bunch of logical gaps-- and it was clear he was more concerned with Republican blowback (even in an assumed Dem administration!) than anything else.

in any case, the cream of the jest for Dems is that now someone they detest is gone and at no political cost to them; Trump just turned a slow burn of a Russia investigation into a full-fledged four alarm fire; and just from a procedural view, will now have to burn valuable legislative time for the new Director nom.

oh, and Trump just pissed off a bunch of FBI agents and probably made a new personal enemy seeing as how he very publicly humiliated Comey.

Doktor
10 May 17,, 15:17
Lavrov just stole the day

tbm3fan
10 May 17,, 17:07
Drip...drip...drip. Was that a ghost I saw lurking in the back?

Parihaka
10 May 17,, 21:25
....
I'll say this for the suddenly departed FBI honcho James Comey (https://www.steynonline.com/7790/posse-comey-tantrum): He's caused enough cases of whiplash to collapse Obamacare before the end of the week. The left in particular likes its cardboard heroes and cartoon villains drawn in bright Sharpie colors, and Comey insists on jumping back and forth between one role and the other like a movie stuntman leaping the roofs from northbound to southbound train.

Comey's not going to charge Hillary? What a stand-up guy! The very model of a dedicated public servant!

Comey's re-opened the Hillary investigation? What a partisan hack! He's just thrown the election to Trump! This is literally a police state!

Comey's investigating Trump's ties to Russia? Thank God! This career civil servant is all that stands between us and that fascist dictator!

Comey's fingering Huma Abedin for forwarding emails to Carlos Danger? God, this Trump stooge won't let up, will he?

Trump's fired Comey? How dare he? This is a crisis for the integrity of our institutions...

Not surprisingly it's hard for these poor folk to keep up - to the point where Stephen Colbert had to rebuke his audience for cheering his announcement that Comey had been fired. That would have been the appropriate reaction had Obama done it circa November 1st last year. But now it's a constitutional outrage.

Amusing as all this is, I felt after his most recent diva turn in Congress that this guy is just too weird to be a policeman - even for one of those Brit telly coppers where the guy comes overloaded with traits: Inspector Comey Investigates, and Prosecutes, and Convicts (or, If He Doesn't, Trashes Your Reputation in Public). He'd be better off cast as one of those witnesses who can never stop talking, and keeps digging himself deeper and deeper.

As it turns out, he misspoke somewhat on the matter of Huma Abedin sending classified emails to her spambot penis of a hubby to print out during breaks from sexting middle-schoolers. Which is how we arrive at the brain-exploding scenario of Trump firing Comey for being unfair to Hillary. Boy, that Putin is always nine chess moves ahead, isn't he?

Back in the real world, the memorandum from Rod Rosenstein, Deputy Attorney General, outlining the case for firing Comey, lays bare the FBI Director's brazenness:

The director was wrong to usurp the Attorney General's authority on July 5, 2016, and announce his conclusion that the case should be closed without prosecution. It is not the function of the Director to make such an announcement. At most, the Director should have said the FBI had completed its investigation and presented its findings to federal prosecutors. The Director now defends his decision by asserting that he believed attorney General Loretta Lynch had a conflict. But the FBI Director is never empowered to supplant federal prosecutors and assume command of the Justice Department.

That's true. If the County Attorney has a conflict of interest, the Sheriff doesn't unilaterally step in and assume the role of prosecutor.

Furthermore:

We do not hold press conferences to release derogatory information about the subject of a declined criminal investigation. Derogatory information sometimes is disclosed in the course of criminal investigations and prosecutions, but we never release it gratuitously. The Director laid out his version of the facts for the news media as if it were a closing argument, but without a trial. It is a textbook example of what federal prosecutors and agents are taught not to do.

That's also true. In a functioning legal system, the accused has the right to confront his accuser in open court. If you're not going to bring it into court, you don't do a drive-by prosecution at a press conference.

And more:

In response to skeptical question at a congressional hearing, the Director defended his remarks by saying that his "goal was to say what is true. What did we do, what did we find, what do we think about it." But the goal of a federal criminal investigation is not to announce our thoughts at a press conference. The goal is to determine whether there is sufficient evidence to justify a federal criminal prosecution, then allow a federal prosecutor who exercises authority delegated by the Attorney General to make a prosecutorial decision, and then - if prosecution is warranted - let the judge and jury determine the facts.

True yet again. It is for the jury to decide "what do we think about it" and thereby determine the truth of the matter - not a copper by public proclamation. So, having usurped the role of prosecutor, Comey was also adding one-man jury to the many arrows in his quiver.

And another:

Concerning his letter to the Congress on October 28, 2016, the Director cast his decision as a choice between whether he would "speak" about the FBI's decision to investigate the newly-discovered email messages or "conceal" it. "Conceal" is a loaded term that misstates the issue. When federal agents and prosecutors quietly open a criminal investigation, we are not concealing anything; we are simply following the longstanding policy that we refrain from publicizing non-public information.

All true. Indeed, it ought to be the assumption of a civilized justice system that, unless the matter is laid before a court, the information collected in a criminal investigation remains undisclosed - or, as Comey would have it, "concealed".

I know from my own experience that there are too many procedurally capricious aspects to American justice. It is extraordinary that both major-party candidates should have come under FBI investigation during a presidential campaign. It is even more extraordinary and deeply disturbing that the FBI director felt he could wing it with a breezy l'état, c'est moi approach to policing norms that evidently discomforted him not a whit save for retrospective feelings of "mild nausea". Way too mild.

I have disliked James Comey ever since discovering he was the fellow who sent Martha Stewart to jail for supposedly lying to the FBI in a matter in which there was no underlying crime. Comey, whatever one feels about him, is no liar: He's been entirely upfront about his bizarre trashing of procedural norms. The only mystery is why he chose to do it, other than for some freaky narcissistic need to make himself the most famous FBI director since Hoover.

Mission accomplished. It's good to see the back of him. When the lefties stop prancing up and down about constitutional coups, they might agree with that.

snapper
10 May 17,, 21:57
So the day after firing Comey, the guy leading an inquiry into Trump - Moscow ties in the election interference, fired allegedly on the advice of Sessions (who 'recused' himself), just after Comey had asked for more funds for his inquiry (having been told to hurry up by the Senate Committee) Trump had some visitors:

43812

43813

These photos come exclusively from the Muscovite press as no US 'fake news' journalists were allowed in. America First or the 'art of the deal'? This is beyond laughable and only an independent investigation can now satisfy the need for justice - followed by a swift impeachment I hope.

tbm3fan
10 May 17,, 23:04
I don't know about impeachment but at a minimum this is going to get good. Seems every talking head in the White House has a different version of the story starting back when Trump praised Comey, re Clinton, before the election. Can't wait to see who he nominates for the position. I know he is very big on loyalty to him but talk about a large can of worms going down that road. One thing for sure with all this going on the health care bill is going to take months and months in the Senate.


other than for some freaky narcissistic need to make himself the most famous FBI director since Hoover.

I did like this for over the top. At least if you are going to say he is narcissistic then compare him to the best and that isn't Hoover but your's truly, Trump.

Ironduke
10 May 17,, 23:13
I'll say this for the suddenly departed FBI honcho James Comey...
Everybody's got a narrative. The guy obviously doesn't like Comey, so define him as imaginatively as possible assigning him whatever motive and angle that randomly comes to mind just as your fingers hit keys whilst typing out a hit piece.

astralis
10 May 17,, 23:23
re: Pari's article: I happen to agree that Comey acted very unprofessionally in terms of what he did 11 days before the election. that was the basis of Deputy AG Rosenstein's memo.

and if we had a POTUS whose associates were NOT under investigation by the FBI, then i'd say this was a great, statesman-like move-- particularly because it would be seen as giving ammo to the opposition party's claims.

but that's not our reality.

and it's clear from Trump's tweets and even Trump's very -letter- to Comey, that Comey being unfair to Clinton was absolutely the last thing on Trump's mind. this was merely the excuse that Trump needed to axe Comey.

Toby
10 May 17,, 23:27
When you want to hide your objective, create a distraction!

Ironduke
10 May 17,, 23:43
re: Pari's article: I happen to agree that Comey acted very unprofessionally in terms of what he did 11 days before the election. that was the basis of Deputy AG Rosenstein's memo.
A bit impulsive of him to say some of the things he said. "Mildly nauseous" certainly didn't play out well when it hit the cable news circuit.

zraver
11 May 17,, 02:07
So glad he is gone. He was cowardly, partisan, and corrupt. He did untold damage to the republic. From refusing to act on Contempt of Congress cases given to him, willingly running interference for a politicized DoJ and openly admitting on national tv that the elites have a different set of laws from everyone else, that justice isn't blind. Next to Gorsuch, this is the best move Trump has made so far in so far as long term health of the republic is concerned.

tbm3fan
11 May 17,, 03:12
So glad he is gone. He was cowardly, partisan, and corrupt. He did untold damage to the republic. From refusing to act on Contempt of Congress cases given to him, willingly running interference for a politicized DoJ and openly admitting on national tv that the elites have a different set of laws from everyone else, that justice isn't blind. Next to Gorsuch, this is the best move Trump has made so far in so far as long term health of the republic is concerned.

Now I understand Ironduke's comment...

Parihaka
11 May 17,, 06:29
Everybody's got a narrative. The guy obviously doesn't like Comey, so define him as imaginatively as possible assigning him whatever motive and angle that randomly comes to mind just as your fingers hit keys whilst typing out a hit piece.
He's a media whore. I can't see that as a good attribute in the head of the FBI. By the same token, it's hardly a firing offence.

Parihaka
11 May 17,, 06:30
re: Pari's article: I happen to agree that Comey acted very unprofessionally in terms of what he did 11 days before the election. that was the basis of Deputy AG Rosenstein's memo.

and if we had a POTUS whose associates were NOT under investigation by the FBI, then i'd say this was a great, statesman-like move-- particularly because it would be seen as giving ammo to the opposition party's claims.

but that's not our reality.

and it's clear from Trump's tweets and even Trump's very -letter- to Comey, that Comey being unfair to Clinton was absolutely the last thing on Trump's mind. this was merely the excuse that Trump needed to axe Comey.

Yup, in a nutshell.

Ironduke
11 May 17,, 12:06
These photos come exclusively from the Muscovite press as no US 'fake news' journalists were allowed in. America First or the 'art of the deal'? This is beyond laughable and only an independent investigation can now satisfy the need for justice - followed by a swift impeachment I hope.
So American journalists are not allowed at this event because they're "fake news" - but somehow RT and the like is just fine.

Perhaps Lavrov and Putin dispensed advice at this meeting on how exactly Trump should deal with journalists that trouble him.

In Russia, they just kill them outright.

Perhaps in the US, the 1st Amendment will be changed to:


Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances, but the President has the right to assassinate you if you do.

tankie
11 May 17,, 13:08
/\ like , lol

NUS
11 May 17,, 13:44
So American journalists are not allowed at this event because they're "fake news" - but somehow RT and the like is just fine.

Perhaps Lavrov and Putin dispensed advice at this meeting on how exactly Trump should deal with journalists that trouble him.

In Russia, they just kill them outright.

Perhaps in the US, the 1st Amendment will be changed to:

Or perhaps you should find out yourself what really happened, not the bullshit you've been fed trough your "press". No journalists were allowed, only personal photographers of Trump and Lavrov. Trump did not released the photo, Lavrov did.

Parihaka
11 May 17,, 17:22
Or perhaps you should find out yourself what really happened, not the bullshit you've been fed trough your "press". No journalists were allowed, only personal photographers of Trump and Lavrov. Trump did not released the photo, Lavrov did.

You have to admit though, both Trump and Lavrov trolled the democrat press magnificently.

Ironduke
11 May 17,, 17:51
You have to admit though, both Trump and Lavrov trolled the democrat press magnificently.
Lavrov and Putin also troll the Russian press, by assassinating them on a regular basis.

The difference between Putin and Trump at this point, with regards to journalists, is that Putin assassinates journalists on Potapovsky Avenue and many other avenues, and Trump could theoretically get away with (his words, not mine) assassinating someone, perhaps Jake Tapper, on 5th Avenue.
,

astralis
11 May 17,, 18:41
man, when Trump first said that phrase I thought it was typical Trumpian stream-of-consciousness-braggadacio, but these days i'm not so sure anymore.

Ironduke
11 May 17,, 18:45
Here's the problem, even if Trump has not or will not personally assassinate people.

He speaks words. People, motivated by those very words, have gone out that very night and committed murders, bombings, vandalisms, and various types of terrorist attacks.

Trump speaks. Domestic terrorists are galvanized and motivated, and they have acted in the past, and will continue to act, after Trump speaks words.

Sometimes the terrorist attacks occur practically in real-time after he speaks at a rally or on Twitter, sometimes there's a delay of hours or days.

astralis
11 May 17,, 19:11
https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/how-trumps-anger-and-impatience-prompted-him-to-fire-the-fbi-director/2017/05/10/d9642334-359c-11e7-b373-418f6849a004_story.html


Rosenstein threatened to resign after the narrative emerging from the White House on Tuesday evening cast him as a prime mover of the decision to fire Comey and that the president acted only on his recommendation, said the person close to the White House, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter.

snapper
11 May 17,, 20:35
General Mike Hayden (formerly CIA and NSA Director) on the Comey firing; "I was very surprised and stunned as anyone...I’m trying to avoid the conclusion that we’ve become Nicaragua."

I do think firing Comey makes the whole "Russia is fake news" (to quote Trump) thing 'go away'. Subpoenas have been issued for Flynn I am told, I rather think this move makes it all worse for Trump as behaving in such a way that it is clear you are trying to hide something merely draws attention to the fact that you are hiding it. Make him release his tax returns!

Ironduke
11 May 17,, 21:17
Make him release his tax returns!
I'm more interested in the violations of the Espionage Act of 1917 that have been committed by members of the Trump Administration, than I am in his tax returns.

Of course, it may be the case there is additional supporting evidence of violations of the Espionage Act contained within the tax returns.

Time will tell.

snapper
11 May 17,, 21:48
There's a Racketeering something (RICO) investigation into the GOP receiving laundered Muscovite money during the campaign. Trump also has Muscovite money which is separate - his companies etc I suppose. That they and he colluded with Moscow on the interference in the election is beyond doubt; whether that classifies as treason or some other charge in US law I don't know but this lot end in jail.

astralis
11 May 17,, 21:58
now POTUS is denying that his original assertion that it was Deputy AG Rosenstein's recommendation that drove the Comey firing-- that he had wanted to do it from the beginning and would have done it regardless of the recommendations coming his way.

Parihaka
11 May 17,, 22:56
Lavrov and Putin also troll the Russian press, by assassinating them on a regular basis.

The difference between Putin and Trump at this point, with regards to journalists, is that Putin assassinates journalists on Potapovsky Avenue and many other avenues, and Trump could theoretically get away with (his words, not mine) assassinating someone, perhaps Jake Tapper, on 5th Avenue.
,

When he does, get back to me :-)

Parihaka
11 May 17,, 22:58
Here's the problem, even if Trump has not or will not personally assassinate people.

He speaks words. People, motivated by those very words, have gone out that very night and committed murders, bombings, vandalisms, and various types of terrorist attacks.

Trump speaks. Domestic terrorists are galvanized and motivated, and they have acted in the past, and will continue to act, after Trump speaks words.

Sometimes the terrorist attacks occur practically in real-time after he speaks at a rally or on Twitter, sometimes there's a delay of hours or days.
Yup, here's a compendium of them for you

http://www.fakehatecrimes.org/fakes?page=1

JAD_333
11 May 17,, 23:11
and if we had a POTUS whose associates were NOT under investigation by the FBI, then i'd say this was a great, statesman-like move-- particularly because it would be seen as giving ammo to the opposition party's claims.




Agree, but... IMHO, Trump should have left Comey in office so Comey would be the one to announce the result of the FBI investigation into whether his campaign people colluded with Russia. If the FBI turns up no evidence of wrongdoing, which I believe is very likely, Comey's announcement to that effect would carry more credibility than any replacement. From here on, no matter who replaces him, his replacement will come under suspicion of a cover-up, should the investigation be closed giving the Trump campaign a clean bill of health.

astralis
12 May 17,, 00:17
JAD,


If the FBI turns up no evidence of wrongdoing, which I believe is very likely,

I know this is not your larger point, but given how even the most cursory investigation resulted in a significant number of leads on Flynn, Stone, Page, and Manafort...i highly doubt this will be the end-state.

indeed, Comey was planning to accelerate the investigation (https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/10/us/politics/comey-russia-investigation-fbi.html) in the days before he got the boot.


From here on, no matter who replaces him, his replacement will come under suspicion of a cover-up, should the investigation be closed giving the Trump campaign a clean bill of health.

there are a multitude of ways he could address this perception issue of a coverup...you know, the whole independent prosecutor. or an independent commission.

or as a smaller step, just releasing his tax returns.

funny how those steps haven't been taken, eh?

JAD_333
12 May 17,, 00:47
Asty:

Yeah, I'm sure there are lots of ways to hold a credible investigation, and having an independent prosecutor is one, but you know the pitfalls of that route: endless and aimless investigating, and just the name "prosecutor" implies crimes were committed. I trust the Hill and the FBI are capable of a thorough investigation and if the dems don't like it....well, they don't like anything having to do with Trump these days, seeing as how they're too focused on making political hay these days when we really need to focus on running the country.

But to my main point--being a PA guy with an eye toward optics--Trump should not have fired the one guy who could close the investigation into his campaign's connections with Russia without howls of cover-up.

Ironduke
12 May 17,, 01:23
When he does, get back to me :-)
You have a lot to say on this subject, as an outsider who doesn't have anywhere near as much at stake as the Americans commenting on this thread.

I may get back to you, when you move to the United States, take US citizenship, and live the reality of life in this country.

Until then, with regards to these internal matters, as you're merely commenting on things you see on the news, and not things you are experiencing firsthand, I'll be getting back to the Americans who comment on these matters, whatever their political persuasion may be.

If you have comments on external matters - I'll get back to you, as these somewhat might or might not affect you in important ways.

Ironduke
12 May 17,, 01:26
But to my main point--being a PA guy with an eye toward optics--Trump should not have fired the one guy who could close the investigation into his campaign's connections with Russia without howls of cover-up.
Speaking of optics, what do you think of the 3-for-1 Lavrov, Kislayak, Kissinger visit the day after Comey was fired?

snapper
12 May 17,, 01:27
I would have more confidence in the inquiries being permitted to operate if it were not for stunts like the Nunes fiasco, Sessions not being an honourable "Friend of Putin" or whatever he is, Comey not being fired, Sally Yates listened to... and well Agent Orange out of the Presidency. Why can he not even release his tax returns? I have smelled this smell many times - the scent is familiar. Sooner these investigations end in impeachment the better for the free world and those in Muscovy who wish for a better life. Trump is deeply compromised - financially and tapes of various peculiar activities. The sooner US conservatives (and I mean real conservatives - not the 'alt right' loonies) understand that and get back on board the ship of what Governing and representing others mean, the less damage they will do to themselves.

snapper
12 May 17,, 01:30
Sergey I. KISLYAK* The guy Flynn discussed dropping sanctions with...

Parihaka
12 May 17,, 02:26
You have a lot to say on this subject, as an outsider who doesn't have anywhere near as much at stake as the Americans commenting on this thread.

I may get back to you, when you move to the United States, take US citizenship, and live the reality of life in this country.

Until then, with regards to these internal matters, as you're merely commenting on things you see on the news, and not things you are experiencing firsthand, I'll be getting back to the Americans who comment on these matters, whatever their political persuasion may be.

If you have comments on external matters - I'll get back to you, as these somewhat might or might not affect you in important ways.

Sure, I look forward to you not commenting on any issues regarding any events past or present occurring outside the borders of the United States of America. :-)

Ironduke
12 May 17,, 02:36
Sure, I look forward to you not commenting on any issues regarding any events past or present occurring outside the borders of the United States of America. :-)
Go ahead and comment. It's a question of relevance, substantivity of the remarks, and prioritization, it's nothing personal.

I bowed out of the Brexit thread, as I'm a bystander and the comments I had to offer were those of an outsider, and I'm not as directly affected as the major commentators in the thread.

Ironduke
12 May 17,, 02:54
Or perhaps you should find out yourself what really happened, not the bullshit you've been fed trough your "press". No journalists were allowed, only personal photographers of Trump and Lavrov. Trump did not released the photo, Lavrov did.
So those weren't Russian journalists photographing Trump with Lavrov and Kislayak, rather, it was Lavrov/Kislayak's personal photographers. Like that somehow makes everything OK.

Having the "personal photographer" of the Russian Foreign Minister in the White House strikes me as being even worse than it being an RT or other Kremlin-funded mouthpiece photojournalist.

Knowing what I do about the Russians, Lavrov's personal photographer was probably an SVR agent. In the White House. With a camera.

zraver
12 May 17,, 03:52
Here's the problem, even if Trump has not or will not personally assassinate people.

He speaks words. People, motivated by those very words, have gone out that very night and committed murders, bombings, vandalisms, and various types of terrorist attacks.

Trump speaks. Domestic terrorists are galvanized and motivated, and they have acted in the past, and will continue to act, after Trump speaks words.

Sometimes the terrorist attacks occur practically in real-time after he speaks at a rally or on Twitter, sometimes there's a delay of hours or days.

That is not fair, almost all of the political violence in the country flows Left to Right, not Right to Left. Name a Trump supporter who killed or bombed?

dan m
12 May 17,, 04:00
That is not fair, almost all of the political violence in the country flows Left to Right, not Right to Left.

Can you substantiate that?

zraver
12 May 17,, 04:05
Speaking of optics, what do you think of the 3-for-1 Lavrov, Kislayak, Kissinger visit the day after Comey was fired?

Poland, Baltics, Syria, North Korea, Ukraine are all places where US and Russian troops are in the same tactical theater.

zraver
12 May 17,, 04:12
Can you substantiate that?

Name one Leftist political rally shut down or even seriously disrupted by the Rightwing. On the Left we have how many riots by BLM, how many Trump rallies and conservative speaking engagements attacked by the anti-fa, we have tapes of the Left planning to disrupt rallies and town halls. Rightwing violence in the US is relatively rare and tends towards racist or religious not political.

zraver
12 May 17,, 04:15
there are a multitude of ways he could address this perception issue of a coverup...you know, the whole independent prosecutor. or an independent commission.

or as a smaller step, just releasing his tax returns.

funny how those steps haven't been taken, eh?

Why should he take those steps? The Left in this country has made it clear that nothing he does will ever be enough. When confronted with a rigged game you have two choices. Play, knowing you will lose anyway (normal republican answer), or walk away from the game and refuse to play at all.

astralis
12 May 17,, 04:42
1.) because collusion with Russia is not a game, and 2.) if he has nothing to hide, then he has nothing to do lose via an independent prosecutor or commission.

in fact, if an independent prosecutor looks into it and finds there's nothing there, he will have political ammo to state that he was right all along and that this was just a witch-hunt by Dems.

zraver
12 May 17,, 04:51
1.) because collusion with Russia is not a game, and 2.) if he has nothing to hide, then he has nothing to do lose via an independent prosecutor or commission.

Zero evidence of collusion. Russia did not cost Clinton the election, they didn't make her not campaign vigorously, or fail to defend blue state turf, they didn't suppress the black vote, make her stumble and nearly pass out getting into a van, didn't make her cackle and insult millions of Americans.... At best we have a former general who reported meeting with the Russians but ommitted a single $33k payment for a speech. The Clinton's had to have their foundation file 4 years of amended returns to properly list foreign money they received. All through the recent campaign Clinton's senior adviser (Podesta) was hiding millions in Russian money.


in fact, if an independent prosecutor looks into it and finds there's nothing there, he will have political ammo to state that he was right all along and that this was just a witch-hunt by Dems.

Congress let the independent counsel law expire for a reason. It became just another tool of political warfare. Where were the calls for independent investigations in to the IRS scandal when the government used its power to tax to target speech it didn't like? To investigate the Iran deal, Clinton emails, The AG meeting with the husband of a target of a federal criminal probe....

Me thinks you doth protest too much.....

astralis
12 May 17,, 04:54
JAD,


Asty:

Yeah, I'm sure there are lots of ways to hold a credible investigation, and having an independent prosecutor is one, but you know the pitfalls of that route: endless and aimless investigating, and just the name "prosecutor" implies crimes were committed. I trust the Hill and the FBI are capable of a thorough investigation and if the dems don't like it....well, they don't like anything having to do with Trump these days, seeing as how they're too focused on making political hay these days when we really need to focus on running the country.

well, then, if Trump decides it was in his best interest to fire Comey, and if he has no interest in taking other steps that would ameliorate the perception issue, then he has no one but himself to blame if the optics continue to look bad for him.

as you see with my response z above, we're pretty much on the same page.

it's increasingly clear now that this was at the very least a case of Trump pursuing a personal vendetta against Comey, and that Trump was 1.) surprised that there was a political cost involved (he thought everyone would be happy with the move) and 2.) didn't bother to think through the perception issue.

past the perception thing, I mentioned earlier that Trump pretty much made himself persona non grata with a lot of FBI agents...plus undoubtedly the personal enmity of Comey, whom was fired in pretty much the most humiliating way possible. I rather agree with you that the FBI investigation will do quite a thorough investigation-- even if Trump ends up cramming through a new, more favorable FBI director, there's still going to be a lot of people whom will now have a more personal interest in making sure that nothing is swept under the rug.

same thing with Deputy AG Rosenstein, on a different level. pretty sure he realized by now how he was used as a patsy, and will have that much more incentive to prove his independence now.

astralis
12 May 17,, 05:02
z,


ero evidence of collusion. Russia did not cost Clinton the election, they didn't make her not campaign vigorously, or fail to defend blue state turf, they didn't suppress the black vote, make her stumble and nearly pass out getting into a van, didn't make her cackle and insult millions of Americans.... At best we have a former general who reported meeting with the Russians but ommitted a single $33k payment for a speech. The Clinton's had to have their foundation file 4 years of amended returns to properly list foreign money they received. All through the recent campaign Clinton's senior adviser (Podesta) was hiding millions in Russian money.

you're not listening to me. i'm not saying that it happened-- that's what the investigation is for. what i'm saying is that the charges against his associates are serious enough where they have merited a long, accelerating FBI investigation. that's not "nothing".

in any case, everything I mentioned regarding an independent commission/investigator will likely not happen because the Republican Congress under McConnell isn't interested-- and that's also because POTUS isn't interested. that's fine, I put my trust in the FBI to do a proper investigation.

I think this is short-sighted politically for the Republicans, because if they truly believe that Trump has absolutely no connection whatsoever with the Russians, then they take the perception hit for nothing.

tbm3fan
12 May 17,, 05:09
now POTUS is denying that his original assertion that it was Deputy AG Rosenstein's recommendation that drove the Comey firing-- that he had wanted to do it from the beginning and would have done it regardless of the recommendations coming his way.

Proof to the world that there is evolution...

zraver
12 May 17,, 05:15
z,



you're not listening to me.

I am listening, I'm saying it doesn't matter becuase its rigged game by people who had zero interest in justice when their side was in power..



I think this is short-sighted politically for the Republicans, because if they truly believe that Trump has absolutely no connection whatsoever with the Russians, then they take the perception hit for nothing.


The Coasts perception of the GOP won't hurt them come election time. Take a trip through the interior and ask people who they distrust more Trump or any media elite.

Mihais
12 May 17,, 07:06
So those weren't Russian journalists photographing Trump with Lavrov and Kislayak, rather, it was Lavrov/Kislayak's personal photographers. Like that somehow makes everything OK.

Having the "personal photographer" of the Russian Foreign Minister in the White House strikes me as being even worse than it being an RT or other Kremlin-funded mouthpiece photojournalist.

Knowing what I do about the Russians, Lavrov's personal photographer was probably an SVR agent. In the White House. With a camera.

Jeez,this is getting into Strangeland.We're gonna be looking for Red spies under the bed very soon.

It's US &Russian official photographers.The Russians published the photos.If the Russian was SVR,the relevance is exactly 0.Zero.
Because if somebody will tell me that Russians can bug the WH,I'm gonna die laughing at the ridiculous and completely unprofessional idea.The only thing such a moronic action will do is annoy Trump in a moment they're trying to somehow mend relations.

Mihais
12 May 17,, 07:32
JAD,



well, then, if Trump decides it was in his best interest to fire Comey, and if he has no interest in taking other steps that would ameliorate the perception issue, then he has no one but himself to blame if the optics continue to look bad for him.

as you see with my response z above, we're pretty much on the same page.

it's increasingly clear now that this was at the very least a case of Trump pursuing a personal vendetta against Comey, and that Trump was 1.) surprised that there was a political cost involved (he thought everyone would be happy with the move) and 2.) didn't bother to think through the perception issue.

past the perception thing, I mentioned earlier that Trump pretty much made himself persona non grata with a lot of FBI agents...plus undoubtedly the personal enmity of Comey, whom was fired in pretty much the most humiliating way possible. I rather agree with you that the FBI investigation will do quite a thorough investigation-- even if Trump ends up cramming through a new, more favorable FBI director, there's still going to be a lot of people whom will now have a more personal interest in making sure that nothing is swept under the rug.

same thing with Deputy AG Rosenstein, on a different level. pretty sure he realized by now how he was used as a patsy, and will have that much more incentive to prove his independence now.

These people had 1 year so far to discover whatever there was,even longer if routine surveillance of key individuals was undertaken.As it should have been the case.

dalem
12 May 17,, 08:52
Hey folks!

Long time no login!

-dale

Doktor
12 May 17,, 09:00
So, when is Trump banning the guns to see the Dems defending the 2nd?

JAD_333
12 May 17,, 09:03
Speaking of optics, what do you think of the 3-for-1 Lavrov, Kislayak, Kissinger visit the day after Comey was fired?

What's he supposed to do? Tell Lavrov, 'sorry can't meet with you tomorrow 'cause I'm going to fire the director of the FBI today.'

I'm about timing that throws the best light possible on a situation. Trump on the other hand follows the P.T. Barnum rule: there's no such thing as bad publicity.

snapper
12 May 17,, 10:24
Zero evidence of collusion.... At best we have a former general who reported meeting with the Russians but ommitted a single $33k payment for a speech.

Hmm Paul Manafort, Roger Stone, Carter Page, Cohen, Flynn (hardly just some "former general" when he was appointed NSA) and Kushner, hell Kislyak was at the Republican Convention - not to mention Muscovite comments such as Ryabkov (deputy foreign minister) saying "there were contacts" with the Trump team during the campaign or the data or the money or Trump himself publicly calling for the Muscovites to get involved in finding Clinton's emails or his sons bragging about lots of finance from Moscow... I do not call the whole sordid business as one where there is "zero evidence". However if you cannot accept ALL your intelligence agencies agreeing that there was a Muscovite attempt to interfere in your (and other) elections with the specific purpose of benefitting the Trump campaign...


What's he supposed to do? Tell Lavrov, 'sorry can't meet with you tomorrow 'cause I'm going to fire the director of the FBI today.'

Yes! Meeting with the Foreign Minister of a country who has attacked your election process and broken all international laws from the Helsiniki accords to committing indiscriminate bombing in Syria and shooting down civilian airliners - in the White House itself - legitimises their actions. Moscow has been after that for years but even Obama had the sense to steer clear. Now he just looks like an idiot who got played, which is probably about the truth of what he is.


Hey folks!

Long time no login!

-dale

Hi :)

astralis
12 May 17,, 14:53
z,


I am listening, I'm saying it doesn't matter becuase its rigged game by people who had zero interest in justice when their side was in power..

then what you're saying is that the FBI is a politically compromised organization that is no longer capable of doing a fair investigation. all the more reason for an independent investigator.


Take a trip through the interior and ask people who they distrust more Trump or any media elite.

we're not talking about the media here.

astralis
12 May 17,, 16:25
so, today POTUS admitted that he fired Comey due to the Russia investigation, and then threatened Comey by hinting that he has tapes of their conversations.

and to round this out, also threatened to end WH press briefings.

just another day with this WH.

Ironduke
12 May 17,, 16:35
Hey folks!

Long time no login!

-dale
Hey Dale.

I've been living about five miles away from you for the past four years. Nice to see you around again.

astralis
12 May 17,, 16:42
so this is what spurred Trump's threat to Comey. as i mentioned earlier, publicly humiliating a FBI director is not a wise idea.

====

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/11/us/politics/trump-comey-firing.html

In a Private Dinner, Trump Demanded Loyalty. Comey Demurred.

By MICHAEL S. SCHMIDT
MAY 11, 2017

WASHINGTON — Only seven days after Donald J. Trump was sworn in as president, James B. Comey has told associates, the F.B.I. director was summoned to the White House for a one-on-one dinner with the new commander in chief.

The conversation that night in January, Mr. Comey now believes, was a harbinger of his downfall this week as head of the F.B.I., according to two people who have heard his account of the dinner.

As they ate, the president and Mr. Comey made small talk about the election and the crowd sizes at Mr. Trump’s rallies. The president then turned the conversation to whether Mr. Comey would pledge his loyalty to him.

The White House’s story about James Comey’s firing is unraveling. Among those contradicting the president is the president.

Mr. Comey declined to make that pledge. Instead, Mr. Comey has recounted to others, he told Mr. Trump that he would always be honest with him, but that he was not “reliable” in the conventional political sense.

The White House says this account is not correct. And Mr. Trump, in an interview on Thursday with NBC, described a far different dinner conversation with Mr. Comey in which the director asked to have the meeting and the question of loyalty never came up. It was not clear whether he was talking about the same meal, but they are believed to have had only one dinner together.

By Mr. Comey’s account, his answer to Mr. Trump’s initial question apparently did not satisfy the president, the associates said. Later in the dinner, Mr. Trump again said to Mr. Comey that he needed his loyalty.

Mr. Comey again replied that he would give him “honesty” and did not pledge his loyalty, according to the account of the conversation.

But Mr. Trump pressed him on whether it would be “honest loyalty.”

“You will have that,” Mr. Comey told his associates he responded.

Throughout his career, Mr. Trump has made loyalty from the people who work for him a key priority, often discharging employees he considers insufficiently reliable.

As described by the two people, the dinner offers a window into Mr. Trump’s approach to the presidency, through Mr. Comey’s eyes. A businessman and reality television star who never served in public office, Mr. Trump may not have understood that by tradition, F.B.I. directors are not supposed to be political loyalists, which is why Congress in the 1970s passed a law giving them 10-year terms to make them independent of the president.

Mr. Comey described details of his refusal to pledge his loyalty to Mr. Trump to several people close to him on the condition that they not discuss it publicly while he was F.B.I. director. But now that Mr. Comey has been fired, they felt free to discuss it on the condition of anonymity.

A White House spokeswoman on Thursday disputed the description of the dinner by Mr. Comey’s associates.

“We don’t believe this to be an accurate account,” said Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the deputy press secretary. “The integrity of our law enforcement agencies and their leadership is of the utmost importance to President Trump. He would never even suggest the expectation of personal loyalty, only loyalty to our country and its great people.”

At the dinner described by Mr. Trump in his interview with NBC, the conversation with Mr. Comey was quite different. Mr. Trump told NBC that Mr. Comey requested it to ask to keep his job. Mr. Trump said he asked the F.B.I. director if he was under investigation, a question that legal experts called highly unusual if not improper. In Mr. Trump’s telling, Mr. Comey reassured him that he was not.

Mr. Trump did not say whether he asked Mr. Comey for his loyalty. Asked at Wednesday’s White House news briefing whether loyalty was a factor in picking a new F.B.I. director, Ms. Sanders said Mr. Trump wanted someone who is “loyal to the justice system.”

President Trump told NBC’s Lester Holt that the F.B.I. was in turmoil, and that he was going to fire its director, James B. Comey, regardless of any recommendation. By NBC NEWS. Photo by Doug Mills/The New York Times. Watch in Times Video »

The dinner described by Mr. Comey’s associates came in the early days of Mr. Trump’s administration, as the F.B.I. was investigating Russian meddling in the election and possible ties to Mr. Trump’s campaign. That investigation has since gained momentum as investigators have developed new evidence and leads.

Mr. Trump had met Mr. Comey for the first time in January, during the transition, when, along with the intelligence chiefs, the F.B.I. director presented him with evidence of that intervention. Mr. Comey was tasked by his fellow intelligence directors to also pull Mr. Trump aside and inform him about a secret dossier suggesting that Russia might have collected compromising information about him.

The dinner at which the conversation Mr. Comey related took place was on Jan. 27, almost a month later. CNN reported on Thursday that Mr. Comey never gave Mr. Trump an assurance of his loyalty.

Mr. Comey’s associates said that the new president requested the dinner he described, and said that he was wary about attending because he did not want to appear too chummy with Mr. Trump, especially amid the Russia investigation. But Mr. Comey went because he did not believe he could turn down a meeting with the new president.

During the meal, according to the account of the two associates, Mr. Comey tried to explain to Mr. Trump how he saw his role as F.B.I. director. Mr. Comey told Mr. Trump that the country would be best served by an independent F.B.I. and Justice Department.

In announcing Mr. Comey’s dismissal on Tuesday, the White House released documents from the attorney general and the deputy attorney general that outlined why Mr. Comey should be fired.

Mr. Trump said in the NBC interview, “Regardless of recommendation, I was going to fire Comey.”

“In fact, when I decided to just do it, I said to myself, I said, you know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story,” Mr. Trump said.

Ironduke
12 May 17,, 16:43
Jeez,this is getting into Strangeland.We're gonna be looking for Red spies under the bed very soon.

It's US &Russian official photographers.The Russians published the photos.If the Russian was SVR,the relevance is exactly 0.Zero.
Because if somebody will tell me that Russians can bug the WH,I'm gonna die laughing at the ridiculous and completely unprofessional idea.The only thing such a moronic action will do is annoy Trump in a moment they're trying to somehow mend relations.
First of all - a sane president wouldn't be inviting the Russian Foreign Minister and his ambassador to the US within hours of firing the man leading the Russiagate investigation.

Secondly, there are in-house White House photographers. I'm sure in this technological age we're living in, a WH photographer can take pictures of the representatives of a hostile, adversarial power who have, quite insanely, been invited to be guests at the WH, and if they want photos, send them on their way with photos, taken by a WH photographer.

Given the fact that Trump took phone calls and spoke in front of dozens of people at his Mar-a-lago estate regarding North Korea, I truly wouldn't put it past him to relax security measures for a so-called "personal photographer".

Whether or not the SVR agent was surreptitiously taking photographs of sensitive things or not is immateriel - you don't allow SVR agents into the White House. An SVR agent can take entire legitimate photographs that we'd allow a British or German or Australian personal photographer to take - but before, between, and after taking photographs, the SVR agent is going to make as many observations as he possibly can whilst inside the White House.

Even if security measures were not relaxed, I guarantee you the SVR agent walked out of the White House with valuable observations. Bugs need not be planted, nor surreptitious photographs taken for this to occur. Nice strawman though.

Ironduke
12 May 17,, 17:14
For posterity's sake:

http://i.imgur.com/6lN1jkr.jpg

tbm3fan
12 May 17,, 17:46
Mr. Trump did not say whether he asked Mr. Comey for his loyalty. Asked at Wednesday’s White House news briefing whether loyalty was a factor in picking a new F.B.I. director, Ms. Sanders said Mr. Trump wanted someone who is “loyal to the justice system.”

Loyalty has been a very big deal with this man going back ages. Probably the number 1 way he judges you. Number 2 is likely to be can you make him money. If you can provide those two then you could probably be an axe murderer and he wouldn't fire you. This is how he does business in his eyes and as on The Apprentice he can just say you're fired. Clearly he thought he could bring this method with him to Washington. No surprise since the man feels he is never wrong therefore I always right about MY methods. I don't believe that perception of his will ever change. Can't admit a mistake and instead double down every time trying to bluff his way out. Maybe in business but not in Washington where he can't simply fire those who disagree and who have power enough to counter him. The fact, that someone who might have power equal to him, must gall him immensely. He used to be a big fish in a little pond but not now...

antimony
12 May 17,, 18:37
Loyalty has been a very big deal with this man going back ages. Probably the number 1 way he judges you. Number 2 is likely to be can you make him money. If you can provide those two then you could probably be an axe murderer and he wouldn't fire you. This is how he does business in his eyes and as on The Apprentice he can just say you're fired. Clearly he thought he could bring this method with him to Washington. No surprise since the man feels he is never wrong therefore I always right about MY methods. I don't believe that perception of his will ever change. Can't admit a mistake and instead double down every time trying to bluff his way out. Maybe in business but not in Washington where he can't simply fire those who disagree and who have power enough to counter him. The fact, that someone who might have power equal to him, must gall him immensely. He used to be a big fish in a little pond but not now...

Now he is the biggest fish in the largest pond.

Ironduke
12 May 17,, 19:08
First of all - a sane president wouldn't be inviting the Russian Foreign Minister and his ambassador to the US within hours of firing the man leading the Russiagate investigation.

Secondly, there are in-house White House photographers. I'm sure in this technological age we're living in, a WH photographer can take pictures of the representatives of a hostile, adversarial power who have, quite insanely, been invited to be guests at the WH, and if they want photos, send them on their way with photos, taken by a WH photographer.

Given the fact that Trump took phone calls and spoke in front of dozens of people at his Mar-a-lago estate regarding North Korea, I truly wouldn't put it past him to relax security measures for a so-called "personal photographer".

Whether or not the SVR agent was surreptitiously taking photographs of sensitive things or not is immateriel - you don't allow SVR agents into the White House. An SVR agent can take entire legitimate photographs that we'd allow a British or German or Australian personal photographer to take - but before, between, and after taking photographs, the SVR agent is going to make as many observations as he possibly can whilst inside the White House.

Even if security measures were not relaxed, I guarantee you the SVR agent walked out of the White House with valuable observations. Bugs need not be planted, nor surreptitious photographs taken for this to occur. Nice strawman though.
Replying to myself here - I have additional thoughts to offer.

First of all, I cannot prove that the "personal photographers" are SVR agents. I haven't questioned, interrogated, or interviewed these individuals. Nor did I pat the "personal photographers" down or search their persons. I didn't observe their actions while they were in the White House. I am not a firsthand witness to the Lavrov/Kislayak visit to the White House, that came on the heels of the firing of Comey.

I am not the only person here who considers what I've stated to be a possibility/probability. It's simply the case, that certain people may withhold comment, because they cannot prove it.

I live in a backwater, second-rate Midwestern metropolis, I'm commenting in my capacity as a private citizen, and have I nothing to lose by calling a spade a spade, and stating outright and upfront what I believe.the case is here.

That being said, what I'm stating isn't a half-baked theory, an unfounded assumption, or a conspiracy theory.

What I've stated with regards to these matters, it is simply a commentary/reflection on how the Russians are known to operate. This is their modus operandi, this is how they do things, and if those "personal photographers" weren't SVR agents, then the Russians went against their own M.O. and decided this one time out of million, to make a conscious, concerted effort not to send SVR agents into the White House.

The natural thing for the Russians to do automatically, naturally, reflexively, even almost involuntarily, without giving it a second thought, is to send in SVR agents with a cover story in these circumstances.

Planting bugs and utilizing microcameras or recording devices is not even remotely necessary in these circumstances, a skilled HUMINT agent only needs their eyeballs and a brain to walk out of the White House with a major intelligence coup.

Eyeballs and a trained, experienced, intelligent mind are the most devastatingly effective intelligence tool that has ever or will ever exist, and the Russians have these in spades.

JAD_333
12 May 17,, 19:30
The natural thing for the Russians to do automatically, naturally, reflexively, even almost involuntarily, without giving it a second thought, is to send in SVR agents with a cover story in these circumstances.

Planting bugs and utilizing microcameras or recording devices is not even remotely necessary in these circumstances, a skilled HUMINT agent only needs their eyeballs and a brain to walk out of the White House with a major intelligence coup.

Yeah, I suppose Russian interior decorators would welcome knowing all about the decor items in the Oval office, and what better way to get it than to send in an SVR agent with a camera.

Seriously, do you believe having a Russia photographer in the Oval office to snap pictures of Lavrov and Trump shaking hands is a big deal?

The big deal is that Trump barred photographers from domestic media outlets. If he hadn't, the Russian photographer would have been just one of the crowd.

Ironduke
12 May 17,, 19:39
Yeah, I suppose Russian interior decorators would welcome knowing all about the decor items in the Oval office, and what better way to get it than to send in an SVR agent with a camera.

Seriously, do you believe having a Russia photographer in the Oval office to snap pictures of Lavrov and Trump shaking hands is a big deal?

The big deal is that Trump barred photographers from domestic media outlets. If he hadn't, the Russian photographer would have been just one of the crowd.
Yes, given how lax Trump has been regarding information security, how lax he is with regards to what he says, does, and leaves lying around when he believes he's in the company of friends, the Mar-a-Lago North Korea phone calls being a case in point, I think it's a big deal.

I agree with your point regarding domestic media outlets and their access, it's also a big deal. Just because that is such a big deal, doesn't make allowing potential Russian intelligence agents under lax and unprofessional circumstances into the White House a small deal.

You might assign a different weight and priorities to the relative importance/relevance of these various things, but I believe it's an error to outright dismiss other matters as some unimportant, irrelevant, non-factor type of thing.

Photographing things isn't necessary - it could very well detract from the mission of a potential SVR agent - though given Trump's history, it wouldn't even surprise me if bestowed the freedom of the city on his guests, let them show themselves around. I doubt that happened, but it wouldn't surprise me.

That being said, I have more concerns about the eyeballs of the "personal photographers", and the brain behind those eyes. I'd be curious to know where these "photographers" went in the White House, and if they were vetted by the FBI/CIA before entering the White House, or whether it was just an open house invitation on behalf of Trump to the Russians.

This isn't the Reagan or Bush White House, or even the Clinton or Obama White House we're talking about here. It's the Trump White House, and the rules that apply, and ways of doing things, are from an entirely different, alternate reality, not even remotely like any other White House in living memory.

Ironduke
12 May 17,, 19:59
And you have implied a good point - discussing other angles of these matters is more important than discussing things that potentially or probably occured, but cannot be proven, for which we have no firsthand or even second/thirdhand evidence of (yet).

I said what I had to say, and I'll drop the SVR angle, as discussing it any further will detract from and steal the limelight from more cogent lines of discussion. I don't want to hijack this thread with something that probably occurred, but I cannot yet back up with any evidence.

tbm3fan
12 May 17,, 23:25
Now he is the biggest fish in the largest pond. No, he thinks he is the biggest fish in the biggest pond but is just an Emperor without clothes. Although right now he is more like Nemo hiding inside the dive helmet avoiding all contact except by tweets. Some Commander-in-Chief.

snapper
13 May 17,, 01:36
This photographer, if he had any links to any Muscovite intel agencies (and I agree he probably did) was almost certainly not SVR but GRU. The difference between the two is really what their objectives are and thus how they are used. SVR are more covert - all the 'illegals' and long term plants plus those working on diplomatic missions will be SVR run whereas GRU are used on more 'one off' and less covert assignments - Igor Girkin in Donbass was GRU not SVR. SVR operatives are therefore regarded as higher value because their assignments are supposed to be long term so to use an SVR operative on a stunt like this would be a waste as he is likely to be 'PNG'ed' fairly quickly after. Just so we get what we are discussing right...

zraver
13 May 17,, 06:39
z,



then what you're saying is that the FBI is a politically compromised organization that is no longer capable of doing a fair investigation. all the more reason for an independent investigator.

Nope, not until after the investigations of the IRS for targeting the Tea Party and Hillary Clinton's email server, and of the Clinton Foundation.




we're not talking about the media here.

Of course we are, the sooner you grasp that the sooner you'll get it. The Russia, Russia, Russia meme being pushed by the media stands in direct opposition to the way the media buried anything that might hurt the Dems. Everything is about the media to Trump supporters. Unless you can restore media credibility with them, you can't get at him.

Doktor
13 May 17,, 08:34
I was under impression that you don't need an official visit to spy on WH administration or the DoS.

http://abcnews.go.com/US/state-dept-shuts-email-cyber-attack/story?id=29624866

snapper
13 May 17,, 11:27
Of course we are, the sooner you grasp that the sooner you'll get it. The Russia, Russia, Russia meme being pushed by the media stands in direct opposition to the way the media buried anything that might hurt the Dems.

So the Congressional and FBI inquiries into the known Muscovite attempt to influence the election in Trump's favour are just media gossip? We know Comey was fired because of the Muscovite inquiry - Trump said so. That is not media gossip, nor was Flynn's dismissal, or Manafort's or all the rest or Sessions 'recusal' which he seems to have broken. These are FACTS not media gossip.

Ironduke
13 May 17,, 15:32
So the Congressional and FBI inquiries into the known Muscovite attempt to influence the election in Trump's favour are just media gossip? We know Comey was fired because of the Muscovite inquiry - Trump said so. That is not media gossip, nor was Flynn's dismissal, or Manafort's or all the rest or Sessions 'recusal' which he seems to have broken. These are FACTS not media gossip.
QFT, as they say. Quoted for truth.

I believe that despite Trump's claims that of how everyone "lost confidence" in Comey, everyone, in fact, has lost whatever tiny remaining shred of confidence they had in Trump.

Saying Republicans in Congress had confidence in Trump may be an overstatement, perhaps instead of using the word confidence, saying they merely set aside their strong reservations to work on areas of common interest, despite Trump's egregious acts, would be a more apt way of putting it. So the Republicans aren't going to lose confidence per say, as you cannot lose something you never had, they are merely going to stop setting aside their strong reservations.

Obviously, many of them don't want to stick their neck out if the viability of impeachment proceedings are uncertain. I think just enough of them will, however, and alongside the Democrats, will create a majority to vote for articles of impeachment.

antimony
13 May 17,, 16:32
Nope, not until after the investigations of the IRS for targeting the Tea Party and Hillary Clinton's email server, and of the Clinton Foundation.





Of course we are, the sooner you grasp that the sooner you'll get it. The Russia, Russia, Russia meme being pushed by the media stands in direct opposition to the way the media buried anything that might hurt the Dems. Everything is about the media to Trump supporters. Unless you can restore media credibility with them, you can't get at him.

I do not see the burning need to get at Trump supporters. His ratings are at a dismal low, which means he is down to his core base, which will never change even if he shoots someone in the middle of 5th Ave (his words).

Ironduke
13 May 17,, 18:45
not SVR but GRU. The difference between the two is really what their objectives are and thus how they are used.
Without going any deeper on this matter, as it was speculation in the first place, for which no evidence has yet emerged to the public - you're right, regarding the distinction.

Ironduke
13 May 17,, 18:52
I do not see the burning need to get at Trump supporters. His ratings are at a dismal low, which means he is down to his core base, which will never change even if he shoots someone in the middle of 5th Ave (his words).
I don't think I've seen anybody here with a burning need to go after them - I don't blame Trump supporters for putting him in office. I blame structural and institutional failings in the US that unfolded over the last 20-odd years.

There were other preceding factors that set the stage for the rise of someone like Trump to power, however I think the main catalyst that definitively set our country on the course it's been on was the Republican Revolution of 1995, in which this attitude of burn your political opponents to the ground, and burn out the middle ground too - nuclear option every day, and I'm not just talking about the procedural, parliamentary procedure - that this is how our country became the way it is.

I found it quite disturbing to read that something like 80% of Americans would marry across party lines in the 1950s, yet only 10% would today. The hate, vitriol, and polarization that exist today in American society is precisely the sort of thing that could cause a civil war, if we do not correct course. Trump is a problem, but he is merely the culmination, and ultimately a really bad symptom of an underlying disease that has infected our society, culture, and government.

JAD_333
13 May 17,, 19:31
So the Congressional and FBI inquiries into the known Muscovite attempt to influence the election in Trump's favour are just media gossip? We know Comey was fired because of the Muscovite inquiry - Trump said so. That is not media gossip, nor was Flynn's dismissal, or Manafort's or all the rest or Sessions 'recusal' which he seems to have broken. These are FACTS not media gossip.

Snapper, you illustrate well what's wrong with the approach of the media and Trump's detractors. You say he fired Comey "because of the Muscovite inquiry." That's false. Yes, Trump did say the inquiry was on his mind when he fired Comey, but he didn't say his motive was to end the inquiry. Trump is sloppy in this way. Nevertheless, the whole quote in context (see below) flies in the face of what you and Trump detractors are accusing him of.

Does the following conform to the reporting?


In part of his NBC interview, Trump said he did not seek to halt the FBI’s Russian inquiry, but rather sought to make sure it was done well.

“As far as I’m concerned, I want that thing to be absolutely done properly,” the president said. “Maybe I’ll expand that, you know, lengthen the time.” Regarding the investigation, he added, “I want that to be so strong and so good. And I want it to happen.” Those comments give the president and his lawyers evidence to rebut any claim that he sought to obstruct the FBI inquiry.

http://www.latimes.com/politics/la-na-pol-trump-obstruction-legal-20170512-story.html

antimony
13 May 17,, 20:02
Snapper, you illustrate well what's wrong with the approach of the media and Trump's detractors. You say he fired Comey "because of the Muscovite inquiry." That's false. Yes, Trump did say the inquiry was on his mind when he fired Comey, but he didn't say his motive was to end the inquiry. Trump is sloppy in this way. Nevertheless, the whole quote in context (see below) flies in the face of what you and Trump detractors are accusing him of.

Does the following conform to the reporting?

The idea that we take anything this President says at face value is beyond ridiculous. He says he wants the investigation to be done properly? So what? Why should we believe him?

Ironduke
13 May 17,, 20:43
There were other preceding factors that set the stage for the rise of someone like Trump to power, however I think the main catalyst that definitively set our country on the course it's been on was the Republican Revolution of 1995, in which this attitude of burn your political opponents to the ground, and burn out the middle ground too - nuclear option every day, and I'm not just talking about the procedural, parliamentary procedure - that this is how our country became the way it is.
Just as a clarification, the Democrats adopted this strategy in kind as a necessary response. While the Republicans innovated these practices, the Democrats went along with it, in the manner of an arms race, or co-evolution, to adapt to the Republican strategy. At this point, but parties are equally guilty when they take their turns in power.

I'm not throwing shade on the Republicans - I supported neither Trump or Clinton in 2016. I'm throwing shade on the institutional and structural failings in our society, and the actors who were the catalyst in creating these major problems we face today, who can now be found in both parties.

For the record, I preferred Rand Paul of all the candidates, despite the fact he had no realistic path to the nomination. I appreciated the honesty of Sanders's convictions, but he proposes changes that are far too radical. Some have mistakenly assumed me to be a socialist or internationalist on other threads, so I thought I'd get this out of the way.

Ironduke
13 May 17,, 20:56
Snapper, you illustrate well what's wrong with the approach of the media and Trump's detractors. You say he fired Comey "because of the Muscovite inquiry." That's false. Yes, Trump did say the inquiry was on his mind when he fired Comey, but he didn't say his motive was to end the inquiry. Trump is sloppy in this way. Nevertheless, the whole quote in context (see below) flies in the face of what you and Trump detractors are accusing him of.

Does the following conform to the reporting?
Trump seamlessly shifts gears between multiple motives that are entirely contradictory, depending on who's asking and what his mood is that particular second.

This man has an itchy trigger finger, not just in regards to officials like Comey, but generally everyone in the world. He is mercurial, capricious, and subject to extreme shifts in temperament that occur over the course of seconds, in ways that are extremely dangerous, given the office he holds. He is easily baited into both Twitter wars, and also military actions undertaken in response to false flag operations conducted by adversaries. He is both the semi-witting and unwitting agent of a foreign power, as are many of his staff, both current and former, both campaign and White House.

That's enough for me.

I am confident that history will bear everything I have just said, to be correct.

snapper
13 May 17,, 21:20
Snapper, you illustrate well what's wrong with the approach of the media and Trump's detractors. You say he fired Comey "because of the Muscovite inquiry." That's false. Yes, Trump did say the inquiry was on his mind when he fired Comey, but he didn't say his motive was to end the inquiry. Trump is sloppy in this way. Nevertheless, the whole quote in context (see below) flies in the face of what you and Trump detractors are accusing him of.

It was also claimed that it was done on the advice of the Deputy Attorney General (who nearly quit when the blame was put on him) but then Trump said he would have fired Comey whatever.... My point is the whole run up on circumstances leading us to where we are now is NOT just media hearsay. Flynn did talk about sanctions, contacts were occurring all over during the campaign and there are ongoing investigations because of it all.

JAD_333
14 May 17,, 00:39
. Flynn did talk about sanctions, contacts were occurring all over during the campaign and there are ongoing investigations because of it all.

That was no crime. The worse part of it is that Flynn lied to the vice president about the nature of his contacts with the Russian ambassador. It cost him his job, rightly so.

But as for the contacts themselves, a neutral observer might wonder why they are such a big deal. Why didn't Obama's comment to then president of Russia Medvedev during the 2012 campaign merit the level of fuss being made today about a Trump senior staffer's contacts with a Russian ambassador?


President Barack Obama was caught on camera on Monday assuring outgoing Russian President Dmitry Medvedev that he will have "more flexibility" to deal with contentious issues like missile defense after the U.S. presidential election.

Obama, during talks in Seoul, urged Moscow to give him "space" until after the November ballot, and Medvedev said he would relay the message to incoming Russian president Vladimir Putin.

The unusually frank exchange came as Obama and Medvedev huddled together on the eve of a global nuclear security summit in the South Korean capital, unaware their words were being picked up by microphones as reporters were led into the room.

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-nuclear-summit-obama-medvedev-idUSBRE82P0JI20120326

tbm3fan
14 May 17,, 01:55
Of course we are, the sooner you grasp that the sooner you'll get it. The Russia, Russia, Russia meme being pushed by the media stands in direct opposition to the way the media buried anything that might hurt the Dems. Everything is about the media to Trump supporters. Unless you can restore media credibility with them, you can't get at him.

Kind of like Hugo Chavez and his loyal supporters. I see the similarities...

antimony
14 May 17,, 04:20
That was no crime. The worse part of it is that Flynn lied to the vice president about the nature of his contacts with the Russian ambassador. It cost him his job, rightly so.

But as for the contacts themselves, a neutral observer might wonder why they are such a big deal. Why didn't Obama's comment to then president of Russia Medvedev during the 2012 campaign merit the level of fuss being made today about a Trump senior staffer's contacts with a Russian ambassador?

Did Medvedev and Putin then hack the RNC emails and turn the screws on Romney?

DOR
14 May 17,, 14:07
Name one Leftist political rally shut down or even seriously disrupted by the Rightwing. On the Left we have how many riots by BLM, how many Trump rallies and conservative speaking engagements attacked by the anti-fa, we have tapes of the Left planning to disrupt rallies and town halls. Rightwing violence in the US is relatively rare and tends towards racist or religious not political.

Here's a bit of insight into fallacy for you, courtesy of Wikipedia:
To make an argument from silence (Latin: argumentum ex silentio) is to express a conclusion that is based on the absence of statements in historical documents, rather than on presence.

DOR
14 May 17,, 14:08
According to this law,

An individual, except the President, elected or appointed to an office of honor or profit in the civil service or uniformed services, shall take the following oath: “I, [name], do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.” This section does not affect other oaths required by law.
(Pub. L. 89–554, Sept. 6, 1966, 80 Stat. 424.) …

An employee of the Federal Bureau of Investigation shall take this oath:


I [name] do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.

Note the requirement for loyalty to the Constitution.
Not the absence of any requirement for loyalty to an individual who may, for a period of time, hold any particular office.

Say, President of the United States of America.

zraver
14 May 17,, 20:43
Note the requirement for loyalty to the Constitution.
Not the absence of any requirement for loyalty to an individual who may, for a period of time, hold any particular office.

Say, President of the United States of America.

For most of our history since 1940, more people have pledged persona loyalty to the Constitution and obedience to the President, than have pledged it solely to the Constitution.

I, _____, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed

DonBelt
14 May 17,, 23:33
The president is the constitutionally elected officer over him, as he is over the military. To the military, obedience to the president and other officers appointed over you means that you are answerable to the elected representatives of the American people as opposed to being a power unto yourself co-equal to the other branches of government.

antimony
15 May 17,, 00:30
For most of our history since 1940, more people have pledged persona loyalty to the Constitution and obedience to the President, than have pledged it solely to the Constitution.

I, _____, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed

Please note what you have written: faith and allegiance to the Constitution, while obeying the orders of the President. Obeying is not pledging personal loyalty. Also, would you have been okay with Government officials swearing personal loyalty to Obama?

Gun Grape
15 May 17,, 03:51
For most of our history since 1940, more people have pledged persona loyalty to the Constitution and obedience to the President, than have pledged it solely to the Constitution.

I, _____, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed

That's from the oath of enlistment not from the Oath of Office. For people that are not in charge of anything. Even then it is known that we obey only the LAWFUL orders from those appointed over us. No loyalty test involved nor pledged to the President or our superiors

The oath of office for commissioned officers and government officials other than the President states:

“I, AB, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.”

Notice that there is no mention of obeying the President

Comey wasn't a Army Private, He was the Director of the FBI

JAD_333
15 May 17,, 06:21
That's from the oath of enlistment not from the Oath of Office. For people that are not in charge of anything. Even then it is known that we obey only the LAWFUL orders from those appointed over us. No loyalty test involved nor pledged to the President or our superiors

The oath of office for commissioned officers and government officials other than the President states:

“I, AB, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.”

Notice that there is no mention of obeying the President

Comey wasn't a Army Private, He was the Director of the FBI


Correct. There is no mention of obeying the president in the oath of office. The oath is to protect the Constitution. That's as it should be. But it also means obeying the president, the courts, and Congress, to extent the Constitution gives them the power to command obedience.

Comey demurred when asked if he would be loyal to Trump, promising only to be 'honest'. What does that mean? Maybe he meant fidelity to the Constitution first and by extension fidelity to the president provided he was acting within his Constitutionally recognized powers. That long-form answer would have been the right one for Comey to give Trump, not a one word reply that left it up in the air whether he would obey a legal order from Trump.

It's still an open question whether Trump was seeking the type of loyalty that goes beyond legal restraints. He may well have been trying to gauge whether Comey understood how much the collusion investigation is weakening him politically and whether Comey sympathized with him, but he hit a brick wall.

In business and in his private life Trump often gets what he wants by claiming he is being unfairly treated. In so doing, he has a history of bucking legal barriers. So, he might have thought he could subliminally influence Comey to hurry up and finish the investigation if he played on his sympathies and cited the good of the country. He would never dare to order a FBI director to end an investigation, but not all directors think alike. There's hope in change. Just ask Obama.

Monash
15 May 17,, 08:06
Haven't commented on this thread before because the situation has been changing so rapidly. That said didn't Trump at one point threaten Comey not to release any tapes he might have of their conversations 'or else'. Whatever else is.

To my mind this brings up a number of interesting points. First and foremost what specific conversations would Trump be worried about? Even assuming there are no tapes his comment virtually demands that investigators ask Comey 'Exactly what conversations was the President worried about Mr Comey'. Seems to me Trump just ended up signposting that there were things said he badly wanted kept out of the public arena - so what were they.

Secondly can the POTUS even issue threats of this nature in these circumstances? legally I mean not morally. To me Trumps comment seems tantamount to publicly threatening a witness in a Federal investigation. Lastly are the conversations of the POTUS and senior gov officials like Comey routinely recorded and if so under what circumstances?

Wooglin
15 May 17,, 19:16
Haven't commented on this thread before because the situation has been changing so rapidly. That said didn't Trump at one point threaten Comey not to release any tapes he might have of their conversations 'or else'. Whatever else is.

To my mind this brings up a number of interesting points. First and foremost what specific conversations would Trump be worried about? Even assuming there are no tapes his comment virtually demands that investigators ask Comey 'Exactly what conversations was the President worried about Mr Comey'. Seems to me Trump just ended up signposting that there were things said he badly wanted kept out of the public arena - so what were they.

Secondly can the POTUS even issue threats of this nature in these circumstances? legally I mean not morally. To me Trumps comment seems tantamount to publicly threatening a witness in a Federal investigation. Lastly are the conversations of the POTUS and senior gov officials like Comey routinely recorded and if so under what circumstances?

Here's the quote...


James Comey better hope that there are no "tapes" of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!

Not sure what you're referring to, but someone really needs to take his twitter account away either way.

snapper
15 May 17,, 23:52
Seems Trump himself could maybe learn a lesson regarding his loyalty and duty to those down range; https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/trump-revealed-highly-classified-information-to-russian-foreign-minister-and-ambassador/2017/05/15/530c172a-3960-11e7-9e48-c4f199710b69_story.html?tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&tid=sm_tw&utm_term=.3721caf92320

Just think what message this sends to any contacts or allies? If I were still a working cog in the Whitehall machine I would warn caution on sharing anything! Imagine what the Poles are thinking??? What are the CIA going to make of this? Why should they risk their lives for this berk? This is disaster in a colossal manner and he is telling the very people who interfered in the US election and fired the guy who was leading the most thorough investigation into collusion on his part... He MUST go and frankly while I hope you can do it legally it is not unjust to kill a traitor.

InExile
16 May 17,, 07:04
Got to enjoy the show and the popcorn!

I said this before on the election thread. The only thing worse for the Republicans than Trump losing them the election would be him winning. At this rate a Republican would be lucky to be elected dog catcher in 2020

Ironduke
17 May 17,, 10:08
From the WaPo:


Notes made by former FBI director Comey say Trump pressured him to end Flynn probe

President Trump asked the FBI to drop its probe into former national security adviser Michael Flynn and urged former FBI director James B. Comey instead to pursue reporters in leak cases, according to associates of Comey who have seen private notes he wrote recounting the conversation.

According to the notes written by Comey following a February meeting with the president, Trump brought up the counterintelligence investigation into Flynn and urged Comey to drop the probe in the wake of the national security adviser’s resignation.

The conversation between Trump and Comey took place after a national security meeting. The president asked to speak privately to the FBI director, and the others left the room, according to the Comey associates, who, like other officials, spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to reveal internal discussions.

“I hope you can let this go,’’ Trump said, according to the Comey notes, which were described by the associates. Comey’s written account of the meeting is two pages long and highly detailed, the associates said.

The conversation described in the notes raises new questions about whether Trump may have crossed any legal lines into criminal behavior by pressuring the FBI to end an investigation.

“There’s definitely a case to be made for obstruction,” said Barak Cohen, a former federal prosecutor who now does white-collar-defense work at the Perkins Coie law firm in the District. “But, on the other hand, you have to realize that — as with any other sort of criminal law — intent is key, and intent here can be difficult to prove.”

The revelation also marks the second major challenge for the White House this week, coming just a day after a report in The Washington Post that the president disclosed highly classified information to Russian diplomats during a private meeting last week at the White House. And it comes at a particularly precarious time for the Trump administration as it searches for someone to nominate to succeed Comey as the next leader of the FBI — the official who will take over investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 election and any coordination between Trump associates and Russian officials.

Comey’s account of the February talk made it clear that his understanding of the conversation was that the president was seeking to impede the investigation, according to people who have read the account or had it read to them. Comey’s notes also made it clear he felt that the conversation with the president was improper and decided to withhold details of it from the case agents working on the Russia probe, according to the associates.

The details of Comey’s meeting notes were first reported by the New York Times.

According to the director’s notes, Comey did not respond directly to the president’s entreaties, only agreeing with Trump’s assertion that Flynn “is a good guy.’’ The notes also described how the president said that he wanted to see reporters in jail for leaks and expressed his dissatisfaction with what he viewed as the FBI’s inaction in pursuing whoever leaked his conversations with foreign leaders, according to Comey associates.

Current and former officials have described ongoing tensions between the Trump administration and the FBI over the issue of the Russia probe and leaks. The president and others have repeatedly pressed the FBI to focus more of its energy on pursuing leakers than on the Russia investigation, these officials said. While the FBI is investigating disclosures of classified information, other issues that Trump and the administration wanted to be investigated did not involve classified information, and FBI officials have resisted demands that they pursue such issues.

Details of Comey’s notes have been shared with a very small circle of people at the FBI and Justice Department, these people said.
More at:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/notes-made-by-former-fbi-director-comey-say-trump-pressured-him-to-end-flynn-probe/2017/05/16/52351a38-3a80-11e7-9e48-c4f199710b69_story.html?utm_term=.c30a67f19923

snapper
22 May 17,, 19:20
Some Israeli reaction to the conversation Trump had with his Muscovite pals; http://www.timesofisrael.com/horrified-israeli-intel-officials-were-shouting-at-us-counterparts-over-trump-leak/

tbm3fan
22 May 17,, 23:38
"Demanding an explanation from American intelligence officials for Trump's actions"

I don't know if they knew, or not, that there were asking the wrong people. They need to ask the little birdie inside the head of Trump as that is the only way.

Dazed
23 May 17,, 03:31
Some Israeli reaction to the conversation Trump had with his Muscovite pals; http://www.timesofisrael.com/horrified-israeli-intel-officials-were-shouting-at-us-counterparts-over-trump-leak/

What with Manning, Snowden, leaks of Trumps meetings and the latest NSA spyleaks. I can see why the Israeli's would have reservations about Trumps shooting his mouth off it would be far damaging than the aforementioned.
I never voted for the guy and he should have a time delay/breathalyzer/proof reader attached to what ever device he tweets with. The reporting on Trump is like the man himself is a lot of hysteria and hyperbole.

DOR
23 May 17,, 09:48
Classic cop interview technique. Get the suspect to deny something that he couldn't have known ...


The May 15 WaPo story said,
“The information the president relayed had been provided by a U.S. partner through an intelligence-sharing arrangement considered so sensitive that details have been withheld from allies and tightly restricted even within the U.S. government, officials said.”

The word “Israel” does not appear in the story.


“Donald Trump denies a Russia allegation that no one made”
http://edition.cnn.com/2017/05/22/politics/trump-israel-russia/

“Trump seems to confirm Israel as source of intelligence shared with Russia”
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/may/22/trump-appears-to-confirm-israel-source-intelligence-russia

Wooglin
23 May 17,, 16:01
Classic cop interview technique. Get the suspect to deny something that he couldn't have known ...


The May 15 WaPo story said,
“The information the president relayed had been provided by a U.S. partner through an intelligence-sharing arrangement considered so sensitive that details have been withheld from allies and tightly restricted even within the U.S. government, officials said.”

The word “Israel” does not appear in the story.


“Donald Trump denies a Russia allegation that no one made”
http://edition.cnn.com/2017/05/22/politics/trump-israel-russia/

“Trump seems to confirm Israel as source of intelligence shared with Russia”
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/may/22/trump-appears-to-confirm-israel-source-intelligence-russia

Congratulations on reaching a new low of being disingenuous.

Dazed
23 May 17,, 22:38
Classic cop interview technique. Get the suspect to deny something that he couldn't have known ...


The May 15 WaPo story said,
“The information the president relayed had been provided by a U.S. partner through an intelligence-sharing arrangement considered so sensitive that details have been withheld from allies and tightly restricted even within the U.S. government, officials said.”

The word “Israel” does not appear in the story.




From the Jerusalem Post

The classified intelligence information that US President Donald Trump recently leaked to Russia may have come from two countries, former CIA and NSA director Michael Hayden said on Monday.

http://www.jpost.com/Israel-News/Ex-CIA-Director-Trump-leak-may-have-come-from-2-nations-Israel-and-Jordan-493536

DOR
24 May 17,, 09:23
Congratulations on reaching a new low of being disingenuous.

Congratulations on reaching a new low of being ... abstruse.

Wooglin
24 May 17,, 15:27
Congratulations on reaching a new low of being ... abstruse.

Sorry. I'll try to use smaller words for you next time. Here you go... http://www.dictionary.com/browse/disingenuous

Let's elaborate and show why these pieces of "journalism" you adore are totally disingenuous.

-Trump shares intel without disclosing the source or methods.

-NYT, not Trump, leaks source was Israel.

-The usual suspects go haywire and blame Trump for compromising Israel, and disclosing Israeli information.

https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/5/17/15653434/israel-spy-compromised-trump-russians

http://www.cnn.com/2017/05/17/politics/israel-trump-intelligence/

-Trump says he never mentioned Israel

-CNN and the Guardian (lol), trying to play "gotcha" games, say A-ha! Nobody ever mentioned Israel, despite shitloads of stories mentioning Israel, and blaming him for compromising Israel on the 17th and after, just like above.

-Left wing lemmings dutifully post stories. Shares in *eyeroll* emoticon sore.

Was that clearer for you?

DOR
25 May 17,, 09:50
Sorry. I'll try to use smaller words for you next time. Here you go... http://www.dictionary.com/browse/disingenuous

Let's elaborate and show why these pieces of "journalism" you adore are totally disingenuous.

-Trump shares intel without disclosing the source or methods.

-NYT, not Trump, leaks source was Israel.

-The usual suspects go haywire and blame Trump for compromising Israel, and disclosing Israeli information.

https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/5/17/15653434/israel-spy-compromised-trump-russians

http://www.cnn.com/2017/05/17/politics/israel-trump-intelligence/

-Trump says he never mentioned Israel

-CNN and the Guardian (lol), trying to play "gotcha" games, say A-ha! Nobody ever mentioned Israel, despite shitloads of stories mentioning Israel, and blaming him for compromising Israel on the 17th and after, just like above.

-Left wing lemmings dutifully post stories. Shares in *eyeroll* emoticon sore.

Was that clearer for you?

So, what's your take on Trump's leak of the details of the Manchester bombing?

Was leaking classified information less than 48 hours after the act too soon?

Should Theresa May retaliate by leaking something about on-going US anti-terrorism operations, or just walk away from the Five Eyes agreement?

Have we ever had a less-qualified, more bumbling idiot in the Oval Office?

Wooglin
25 May 17,, 15:58
So, what's your take on Trump's leak of the details of the Manchester bombing?

What exactly did Trump leak?

Are you referring to the name being leaked before UK police released details? You're actually claiming Trump leaked that?

Are you referring to the NYT showing pictures of evidence from the crime scene which pissed off the UK. NYT again. Not Trump.

And what do you expect Trump to do about US media that you wouldn't then scream about?


Have we ever had a less-qualified, more bumbling idiot in the Oval Office?

Well, yes actually. We recently had a community organizer named Obama. The difference was the press loved him. Not that I don't agree trump is a mess, but I prefer to judge events based on verifiable facts, not disingenuous media bullshit.

DOR
25 May 17,, 17:07
Try to keep up.
The Brits are blaming Trump.
Obama's administration preserved the economy and financial system despite GOPer efforts to turn a train wreck into a Second Great Depression.

Wooglin
25 May 17,, 19:04
Try to keep up.
The Brits are blaming Trump.
Obama's administration preserved the economy and financial system despite GOPer efforts to turn a train wreck into a Second Great Depression.

For what exactly? What exactly did Trump leak?

zraver
26 May 17,, 04:08
Try to keep up.
The Brits are blaming Trump.
Obama's administration preserved the economy and financial system despite GOPer efforts to turn a train wreck into a Second Great Depression.

No they are not, Trump wasn't even in the country at the time. They are blaiming American law enforcement.

snapper
06 Jun 17,, 04:53
Remember that the Muscovite's didn't try to 'hack' your election? Think again; https://theintercept.com/2017/06/05/top-secret-nsa-report-details-russian-hacking-effort-days-before-2016-election/ or maybe it is ALL - all the meetings and contacts - Carter Page, Manafort, Kushner and all the rest - the sacking of Comey, the deliberate and laughable Nunes press conference having come from the White House - just 'coincidence'? Such 'coincidences' are common where Muscovite intelligence is involved.

astralis
07 Jun 17,, 15:23
news of this morning heading into the popcorn-filled Comey testimony (and the expected Trump live-tweeting response).

the number of senior officials which Trump has put pressure on to end the Flynn investigation as well as the Russia collusion probe now stands at 4.

- DNI Coats
- NSA Director Rogers
- FBI Director Comey
- CIA Director Pompeo

snapper
09 Jun 17,, 02:31
Comey's written evidence to the Committee; https://www.intelligence.senate.gov/sites/default/files/documents/os-jcomey-060817.pdf

Bigfella
09 Jun 17,, 09:41
news of this morning heading into the popcorn-filled Comey testimony (and the expected Trump live-tweeting response).

the number of senior officials which Trump has put pressure on to end the Flynn investigation as well as the Russia collusion probe now stands at 4.

- DNI Coats
- NSA Director Rogers
- FBI Director Comey
- CIA Director Pompeo

When was the last time a former FBI director or anyone of similar standing just plain came out & called the President a liar? The truly fun part of this is watching the only GOP trolls attacking the guy who sunk Hillary and trying to spin this as anything other than bad for Tump. Such fun.

astralis
09 Jun 17,, 15:01
^

just imagine if Dems used this defense if all this happened under an Obama Presidency. "oh, he was just a community organizer, he doesn't know any better."

https://www.washingtonpost.com/powerpost/republicans-emerging-trump-defense-a-naif-in-the-oval-office/2017/06/08/51abdd9c-4c71-11e7-bc1b-fddbd8359dee_story.html

Republicans’ emerging Trump defense: A naif in the Oval Office

As former FBI director James B. Comey held the political world in thrall Thursday from inside a packed Senate hearing room, House Speaker Paul D. Ryan walked into an unusually empty press briefing across the Capitol.

Before Comey’s testimony about his private interactions with President Trump had even concluded, Ryan joined an effort already underway among GOP lawmakers to place it in the best possible light for Trump.

“Of course there needs to be a degree of independence” between federal law enforcement and the White House, Ryan said. But he added, “The president’s new at this. He’s new to government, and so he probably wasn’t steeped in the long-running protocols that establish the relationships between [the Justice Department], FBI and White House. He’s just new to this.”

Ryan later made clear that he was “not saying it’s an acceptable excuse” and that his remark was “just my observation.” But he was one of many GOP lawmakers willing to minimize Trump’s alleged meddling and demands for loyalty as the fumblings of a political tyro — or the behavior of a real estate mogul accustomed to having his orders followed.

“It has to still be legal and right and all that, but I think a lot of it is — he’s used to being the CEO,” Rep. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), an early Trump endorser, said Wednesday after Comey’s preliminary statement was published.

Former FBI director James B. Comey testified about his interactions with President Trump before the Senate Intelligence Committee June 8. Here are key moments. (Video: Sarah Parnass/Photo: Matt McClain/The Washington Post)

While playing up Trump’s *naivete is currently one strain of his political defense, legal analysts said it could also be a kernel of a criminal defense. It could be at least a somewhat viable defense to suggest that Trump, who has no direct experience in government or law enforcement, merely didn’t know any better when he was interacting with Comey.

To substantiate an obstruction of justice case under criminal law, a prosecutor has to prove a person acted corruptly. If Trump was merely acting foolishly, he would be legally okay.

“It’s just another way of saying that maybe he had innocent intent, just didn’t appreciate how inappropriate or wrongful it would appear to people who have been around law enforcement,” said Kelly Kramer, a white-collar criminal defense attorney at the Mayer Brown law firm.

Some analysts said the defense could ring hollow — particularly given that, according to Comey, Trump isolated him, ordering every*one else out of the Oval Office before making the request about dropping the Michael Flynn investigation. Trump’s own lawyer, meanwhile, outright disputed Comey’s version of the facts, rather than suggesting that the president was merely naive to the ways of government and investigations. For his part, Comey testified, “I hope there’s tapes” to corroborate his version of events.

On Capitol Hill, at least one lawmaker said ignorance of the law and Washington norms are not excuses.

“That’s why you have a chief of staff. That’s why you have legal counsel,” said Rep. Mark Sanford (R-S.C.), who endured a scandal over an extramarital affair when he was governor of his state in 2009. “The idea of ‘I’m new’ probably doesn’t pass muster in the corporate world, the nonprofit world, much less the body politic.”

Most Capitol Hill Republicans have tended to view Trump fundamentally as a businessman, a man preoccupied with forging deals using all of the tools he developed in his business career — charm, showmanship, coercion, threats.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) held a news conference on June 8 and shared remarks on former FBI director James Comey's testimony before Congress. (Reuters)

Those traits have marked Trump’s relations with lawmakers — particularly as he embarked on his first congressional sales job: persuading House Republicans to pass a hugely controversial health-care bill.

In one episode, he confronted the leader of the hard-right House Freedom Caucus inside a private meeting of Republicans. If the bloc didn’t back the health-care bill, “I’m gonna come after you,” Trump said to Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), adding: “But I know I won’t have to, because I know you’ll vote ‘yes.’ ”

Rep. Dave Brat (R-Va.), a Freedom Caucus member, recalled being lobbied personally by Trump on the bill and suggested a line could be drawn from that experience to Trump’s entreaties to Comey.

“It’s like a real estate deal closing — just a transaction: ‘Let’s get this thing done. Let’s win on it,’ ” Brat recalled. “In the new role, he’s got everyone jumping on every sentence he says, so that’s the tricky part. . . . He’s a business guy. He just wants results.”

Comey’s statement and Thursday’s testimony paint a more damning picture — including a dramatic Feb. 14 meeting in the Oval Office where Comey said Trump asked him to stay behind after a meeting with other officials. Then, he said, Trump raised the subject of the criminal investigation into Flynn, his former national security adviser, and whether Comey could “let this go.”

Comey testified Thursday that he interpreted that remark as a direction to end the probe into Flynn.

While the Republican National Committee blasted out attacks on Comey’s credibility this week, Trump’s Republican defenders on Capitol Hill have largely stayed away from trying to attack the former FBI director’s veracity, instead trying to reframe what he said. That has served to reinforce an emerging GOP view that Trump’s behavior was ham-handed and inappropriate, but not illegal or impeachable.

Ryan said in an MSNBC interview Wednesday that it was “obviously” not appropriate for Trump to ask Comey for a personal pledge of loyalty.

At the hearing, Sen. James E. Risch (R-Idaho) sought to challenge Comey’s interpretations of Trump’s remarks, questioning Comey about whether Trump’s exact words as he reported — “I hope you can let this go” — would support the inference.

“You don’t know of anyone that’s ever been charged for hoping something. Is that a fair statement?” Risch asked.

“I don’t, as I sit here,” Comey replied, prompting Risch to yield his questioning.

Rep. Chris Collins (R-N.Y.), an early and fervent Trump backer, called the president’s intervention on Flynn’s behalf — a day after his firing — “a normal human reaction.”

“I think he’s a human being first,” he said. “I have absolutely no problem with what the president of the United States said. It is clearly not anywhere close to touching something called obstruction of justice, and I’m frankly proud of him for standing for someone who was as loyal as Mike Flynn was throughout the campaign.”

Collins said “of course” Trump ought to be given deference because of his inexperience in political office. “But the press isn’t going to give him any slack,” he said. “It isn’t going to happen.”

Ryan also took a sympathetic tack, pointing to Comey’s statement that he had told Trump he was not personally subject to a criminal probe — backing up an assertion in Trump’s letter firing Comey that had been widely questioned.

The Daily 202 newsletter

PowerPost's must-read morning briefing for decision-makers.

“People now realize why the president is so frustrated when the FBI director tells him on three different occasions he is not under investigation, yet the speculation swirls around the political system that he is,” Ryan said.

Brat echoed several of his colleagues in arguing that the *essence of Trump’s appeal to voters was his bull-in-a-china-shop sensibility and that it would be silly to expect anything else.

“This city’s just full of carefully crafted nonsense,” he said. “The whole nation’s crashing. They hired a businessman — give him a chance.”

GVChamp
09 Jun 17,, 15:16
I wouldn't blame Obama for having normal human reactions. I expect the GOP press would raise holy hell, because that's what their modus operandi is. Just because Paul Ryan would do something doesn't mean it's a good idea.

And yeah, Trump shouldn't be President for the same reason Obama shouldn't have been President: both highly inexperienced and incredibly naïve. Hillary should've won in '08, Romney should've won in '12, and Jeb! should've won in '16.

astralis
09 Jun 17,, 15:49
GVChamp,


Trump shouldn't be President for the same reason Obama shouldn't have been President: both highly inexperienced and incredibly naïve.

true and yet not.

it's true that Obama was highly inexperienced in 2008. that was no longer the case in 2012, at least compared to Romney.

and this also implies a false equivalence between Trump and Obama. Obama's first 150 days in his office sure didn't feature one-tenth as much utter stupidity, foreign policy or otherwise, as this current administration. as i said, think of what Republicans would be saying were it Obama being featured here, trying to intimidate a FBI director. hell, even now they're still going on about Bill Clinton's meeting with Loretta Lynch.

GVChamp
09 Jun 17,, 16:46
I see mostly some stupid actions blown out of proportion by a political media circus. I wouldn't care if Obama met with an FBI director a single time and says "you know, I hope this guy gets let up on." Or at least wouldn't care A LOT, certainly not compared to what's going in Qatar or Syria, and certainly not compared to the financial crisis actually occurring in '09. This just sucks up oxygen pointlessly.

Again, the GOP Establishment would say different, but that's because they would howl over everything. Pretty much what I would expect either political establishment to do.

tbm3fan
09 Jun 17,, 19:09
[QUOTE=GVChamp;1026116

And yeah, Trump shouldn't be President for the same reason Obama shouldn't have been President: both highly inexperienced and incredibly naïve. Hillary should've won in '08, Romney should've won in '12, and Jeb! should've won in '16.[/QUOTE]

Trump inexperienced? I think you give him too much credit. Willfully ignorant might be closer. Definitely a man without honor and credibility since at least... since probably a child.

astralis
09 Jun 17,, 19:15
GVChamp,


I wouldn't care if Obama met with an FBI director a single time and says "you know, I hope this guy gets let up on."

or you know, 9 times in 4 months...lol.

bottom-line is, yeah, Obama was inexperienced in 2008 but nor was he utterly ignorant and absolutely without honor or character. it is interesting that Comey felt the need to state that after his very first meeting with Trump, he felt compelled to document every meeting because he sensed right off the bat that Trump was a liar.

snapper
09 Jun 17,, 20:17
I think Comey de facto is admitting that he believes Trump a. colluded with Moscow and b. is attempting to obstruct justice.

troung
09 Jun 17,, 22:05
CONTRIBUTORS
June 09, 2017 - 03:00 PM EDT
OPINION: The damaging case against James Comey


Highlights from Comey’s Senate hearing
TheHill.com


00:0006:39
BY JONATHAN TURLEY, OPINION CONTRIBUTOR
TWEET SHARE MORE
The testimony of James Comey proved long on atmospherics and sort on ethics. While many were riveted by Comey’s discussion of his discomfort in meetings with President Trump, most seemed to miss the fact that Comey was describing his own conduct in strikingly unethical terms. The greatest irony is that Trump succeeded in baiting Comey to a degree that even Trump could not have imagined. After calling Comey a “showboat” and poor director, Comey proceeded to commit an unethical and unprofessional act in leaking damaging memos against Trump.

Comey described a series of ethical challenges during his term as FBI director. Yet, he almost uniformly avoided taking a firm stand in support of the professional standards of the FBI. During the Obama administration, U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch gave Comey a direct order to mislead the public by calling the ongoing investigation a mere “matter.” Rather than standing firm on the integrity of his department and refusing to adopt such a meaningless and misleading term, Comey yielded to Lynch while now claiming discomfort over carrying out the order.

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When Trump allegedly asked for Comey to drop the investigation of Michael Flynn or pledge loyalty, Comey did not tell the president that he was engaging in wildly inappropriate conduct. He instead wrote a memo to file and told close aides. He now says that he wishes he had the courage or foresight to have taken a stand with the president.


However, the clearest violation came in the days following his termination. Comey admits that he gave the damaging memos to a friend at Columbia Law School with the full knowledge that the information would be given to the media. It was a particularly curious moment for a former director who was asked by the president to fight the leakers in the government. He proceeded in becoming one of the most consequential leakers against Trump.

Comey said that he took these actions days after his termination, when he said that he woke up in the middle of the night and realized suddenly that the memos could be used to contradict Trump. It was a bizarrely casual treatment of material that would be viewed by many as clearly FBI information. He did not confer with the FBI or the Justice Department. He did not ask for any classification review despite one of the parties described being the president of the United States. He simply sent the memos to a law professor to serve as a conduit to the media.

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As a threshold matter, Comey asked a question with regard to Trump that he should now answer with regard to his own conduct. Comey asked why Trump would ask everyone to leave the Oval Office to speak with Comey unless he was doing something improper. Yet, Trump could ask why Comey would use a third party to leak these memos if they were his property and there was nothing improper in their public release.

In fact, there was a great deal wrong with their release, and Comey likely knew it. These were documents prepared on an FBI computer addressing a highly sensitive investigation on facts that he considered material to that investigation. Indeed, he conveyed that information confidentially to his top aides and later said that he wanted the information to be given to the special counsel because it was important to the investigation.

Many in the media have tried to spin this as not a “leak” because leaks by definition only involve classified information. That is entirely untrue as shown by history. Leaks involve the release of unauthorized information — not only classified information. Many of the most important leaks historically have involved pictures and facts not classified but embarrassing to a government. More importantly, federal regulations refer to unauthorized disclosures not just classified information.

Comey’s position would effectively gut a host of federal rules and regulations. He is suggesting that any federal employee effectively owns documents created during federal employment in relation to an ongoing investigation so long as they address the information to themselves. FBI agents routinely write such memos in investigations. They are called 302s to memorialize field interviews or fact acquisitions. They are treated as FBI information.

The Justice Department routinely claims such memos as privileged and covered by the deliberative process privilege and other privileges. Indeed, if this information were sought under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) it would likely have been denied. Among other things, the Justice Department and FBI routinely claim privilege “inter-agency or intra-agency memorandums or letters which would not be available by law to a party other than an agency in litigation with the agency.”

Of course, Comey did not know if there was a privilege or classification claim by either the Justice Department or the White House because he never asked for review. He just woke up in the middle of night upset about Trump’s name calling and released the damaging information. In doing so, he used these memos not as a shield but a sword.

Besides being subject to nondisclosure agreements, Comey falls under federal laws governing the disclosure of classified and unclassified information. Assuming that the memos were not classified (though it seems odd that it would not be classified even on the confidential level), there is 18 U.S.C. § 641, which makes it a crime to steal, sell, or convey “any record, voucher, money, or thing of value of the United States or of any department or agency thereof.”

There are also ethical and departmental rules against the use of material to damage a former represented person or individual or firm related to prior representation. The FBI website warns employees that “dissemination of FBI information is made strictly in accordance with provisions of the Privacy Act; Title 5, United States Code, Section 552a; FBI policy and procedures regarding discretionary release of information in accordance with the Privacy Act; and other applicable federal orders and directives.”

One such regulation is § 2635.703, on the use of nonpublic information, which states, “An employee shall not engage in a financial transaction using nonpublic information, nor allow the improper use of nonpublic information to further his own private interest or that of another, whether through advice or recommendation, or by knowing unauthorized disclosure.”

The standard FBI employment agreement bars the unauthorized disclosure of information “contained in the files, electronic or paper, of the FBI” that impact the bureau and specifically pledges that “I will not reveal, by any means, any information or material from or related to FBI files or any other information acquired by virtue of my official employment to any unauthorized recipient without prior official written authorization by the FBI.”

Had Comey taken the minimal step of seeking clearance, the department would likely have said that this was FBI information and not personal information. Comey instead decided to ask forgiveness rather than permission.

Comey is also subject to bar rules on releasing information inimical to the interests of his former employer. For example, under professional rule 1.6, lawyers need to secure authority to release information that “(1) reveal a confidence or secret of the lawyer’s client; (2) use a confidence or secret of the lawyer’s client to the disadvantage of the client; [or] (3) use a confidence or secret of the lawyer’s client for the advantage of the lawyer or of a third person.”

Comey actually showed both how to and how not to disclose such information. When Comey released the information, he knew that he was going to be called to Congress where he could disclose this information properly after giving the White House a chance to claim privilege. Instead, he decided to release the information early. Why?

Comey gave two equally implausible explanations. First, he suggested that he wanted to get the information to investigators. However, he knew not only that he was likely to testify but that these memos would inevitably be demanded by both congressional and federal investigators. Second, he said that he wanted to ensure the appointment of a special counsel. However on that Monday, many of us were saying that such an appointment was virtually inevitable. More importantly, he could have given the memos to investigators and properly laid the foundation for a special counsel.

The fact is that the leaking of the memos worked to the advantage of James Comey, not Robert Mueller. Comey was able to take over the narrative and news cycle after Trump had publicly belittled him and his record. Special counsels do not like leaks of this kind. It would have been far better for the special counsel (or Comey’s own former investigatory team and congressional investigators) to have the memos confidentially.

The greatest value of the memos would be to question Trump and other potential targets without their knowing of their existence. The memos could then have been used to establish false statements and pressure cooperation. Instead, Comey told possible targets, including Trump, about the evidence against them in the memos.

Donald Trump continues to show a remarkable ability to bring out the worst in people — supporters and critics alike. In this case, he was able to bait Comey with his tweets and cause Comey to diminish his own credibility. If the comments of Trump were grossly inappropriate, Comey’s response to those comments were equally inappropriate.

Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University. He has served as defense counsel in national security cases involving classified information and alleged leaks to
....

snapper
09 Jun 17,, 22:52
Comey is also subject to bar rules on releasing information inimical to the interests of his former employer. For example, under professional rule 1.6, lawyers need to secure authority to release information that “(1) reveal a confidence or secret of the lawyer’s client; (2) use a confidence or secret of the lawyer’s client to the disadvantage of the client; [or] (3) use a confidence or secret of the lawyer’s client for the advantage of the lawyer or of a third person.”

Comey is not a privately employed lawyer but an Official of the State who has taken a oath to uphold the Constitution in your parlance.

Wooglin
10 Jun 17,, 02:00
GVChamp,



or you know, 9 times in 4 months...lol.

bottom-line is, yeah, Obama was inexperienced in 2008 but nor was he utterly ignorant and absolutely without honor or character. it is interesting that Comey felt the need to state that after his very first meeting with Trump, he felt compelled to document every meeting because he sensed right off the bat that Trump was a liar.

Are you actually claiming he brought this up to Comey 9 times?

zraver
10 Jun 17,, 02:45
Going to point out that 1. the president cannot obstruct justice by asking for an investigation to be ended, even if he orders it flat out. He has the power of full pardon and that does not require a conviction. In short, no one gets prosecuted or goes to jail for a federal crime unless the president permits it. 2. The Director of the FBI, the AG and the DAG all exercise delegated powers of the presidency. Presidents can and previous ones have resumed parts of the portfolios delegated in order to seek a personal outcome in a case.

In short, a tape could have emerged of Trump ordering Comey to end the investigation or be fired and there would still be no crime.

Ironduke
10 Jun 17,, 02:49
Going to point out that 1. the president cannot obstruct justice by asking for an investigation to be ended, even if he orders it flat out. He has the power of full pardon and that does not require a conviction. In short, no one gets prosecuted or goes to jail for a federal crime unless the president permits it. 2. The Director of the FBI, the AG and the DAG all exercise delegated powers of the presidency. Presidents can and previous ones have resumed parts of the portfolios delegated in order to seek a personal outcome in a case.

In short, a tape could have emerged of Trump ordering Comey to end the investigation or be fired and there would still be no crime.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HiHN3IJ_j8A

snapper
10 Jun 17,, 02:57
Can he pardon himself? I think not. If he has obstructed justice he in breach of the law - sure he could pardon Flynn et al but not his own actions.

troung
10 Jun 17,, 03:09
The times is basically huffpost...


Search
SUBSCRIBELOG INOpinion

DISPATCH
Women Say to Comey: Welcome to Our World

James Comey at the hearing Thursday on Capitol Hill.
DOUG MILLS / THE NEW YORK TIMES
By SUSAN CHIRA
JUNE 8, 2017
A man is being publicly grilled about why he was alone in a room with someone he felt was threatening him. Why didn’t he simply resign if he felt uncomfortable with what his boss was asking him to do? Why did he keep taking calls from that boss, even if he thought they were inappropriate? Why didn’t he just come out and say he would not do what the boss was asking for?

Sound familiar? As dozens of people noted immediately on Twitter, if you switch genders, that is the experience of many women in sexual harassment cases. James Comey, the former director of the F.B.I., explained to senators during today’s hearing that he felt acutely uneasy and hesitant to directly confront his boss, the president of the United States. That’s right, even a savvy Washington insider, the same height as LeBron James and no stranger to the cut and thrust of power, seemed slightly ashamed that he had not been able to do so.


“Maybe if I were stronger, I would have,” he said, trying to answer a question about why he didn’t speak his mind. “I was so stunned by the conversation that I just took it in.”

These are the emotions that many women have struggled to explain in the face of sexual harassment, and the ones that have often given defense attorneys grist for what appear to be inconsistencies.

Imbalance of power often lies at the heart of sexual harassment or assault cases, from those of Roger Ailes and Bill O’Reilly at Fox News to the trial of Bill Cosby, underway the same day as the hearing of the Senate Intelligence Committee. On Wednesday, Andrea Constand, Mr. Cosby’s accuser, concluded two days on the witness stand, with defense attorneys suggesting that her continued contacts with Mr. Cosby undermined her credibility. Unsurprisingly enough, today’s hearing shows that power can discomfit and silence men as well as women

https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/06/08/opinion/women-say-to-comey-welcome-to-our-world-of-sexual-harassment-in-the-office.html?_r=0&referer=http://forums.sherdog.com/threads/new-york-times-goes-full-huffpo-compares-comey-to-sexual-harassed-women.3546589/

zraver
10 Jun 17,, 03:12
Can he pardon himself? I think not. If he has obstructed justice he in breach of the law - sure he could pardon Flynn et al but not his own actions.

He can pardon himself. The only thing a pardon can't do is stop an impeachment (removal from office). In fact many people expected Nixon to pardon himself, more recently people expected HRC to pardon herself if she was elected.

Iron Duke, the president exercising executive authority is clearly not only not illegal, but totally legal. ALL not just some authority of executive agencies is power of the presidency delegated.

Wooglin
10 Jun 17,, 03:43
Can he pardon himself? I think not. If he has obstructed justice he in breach of the law - sure he could pardon Flynn et al but not his own actions.

WTF? What obstruction of justice would there be if it's not illegal for him order the case dropped in the first place?

snapper
10 Jun 17,, 04:00
He can pardon himself. The only thing a pardon can't do is stop an impeachment (removal from office). In fact many people expected Nixon to pardon himself, more recently people expected HRC to pardon herself if she was elected.

So are you seriously trying to tell me that this traitorous fool is above the law that derives from the Constitution he swore to uphold? He can pardon himself for collusion with a foreign power in influencing the democratic process and obstruction of justice to cover up his collusion? The man is a traitor and a buffoon and the sooner he ends in prison the better. If your justice system cannot at present do this change it fast.

zraver
10 Jun 17,, 04:54
He did not collude with Russia. He is not a traitor. His power of pardon is absolute.

Wooglin
10 Jun 17,, 05:05
So are you seriously trying to tell me that this traitorous fool is above the law that derives from the Constitution he swore to uphold? He can pardon himself for collusion with a foreign power in influencing the democratic process and obstruction of justice to cover up his collusion? The man is a traitor and a buffoon and the sooner he ends in prison the better. If your justice system cannot at present do this change it fast.

Where do you get this stuff from? Did you even watch the testimony? Apparently not. Do you just make this stuff up?

Apparently whatever source you use didn't bother to mention that Comey's testimony confirmed multiple times that the pres was never even under investigation. Does that fact mean anything to you or are you just going to keep spewing the same shit?

snapper
10 Jun 17,, 05:49
He did not collude with Russia. He is not a traitor. His power of pardon is absolute.

That your faith in his patriotism is touching it does not sway my knowledge of his collusion. If he just released his full tax returns it would provide grounds for his removal. But what you are actually arguing is that an executive can pardon itself and if that is truly so dictatorship must follow - and that worries me far more - for your sake included. No man or Lady can self pardon or else they are above the law which applies equally to ALL. If he murders someone before honest witnesses he can pardon himself? Are you serious? If so your justice system needs serious overhaul.


Where do you get this stuff from? Did you even watch the testimony? Apparently not. Do you just make this stuff up?

Apparently whatever source you use didn't bother to mention that Comey's testimony confirmed multiple times that the pres was never even under investigation. Does that fact mean anything to you or are you just going to keep spewing the same shit?

Comey to be fair was lenient on your Agent Orange. He clearly regarded him as capable of brazenly lying and of collusion and of attempting to obstruct justice. If you wish to believe Muscovite inspired Trumpetian spiel in total and directly disregard all the evidence - much of which has still to be spilt - be my guest. I cannot help you.

What we were speaking of though is if the rule of law applies equally to all... would you agree that it should? Or perhaps that the singular 'pussy grabber' and former TV personality/'celebrity', narcissist liar, former bankrupt etc etc is alone in this special category and may murder anyone he wishes? I pray he does not light upon you in advance.

troung
10 Jun 17,, 06:13
That your faith in his patriotism is touching it does not sway my knowledge of his collusion. If he just released his full tax returns it would provide grounds for his removal. But what you are actually arguing is that an executive can pardon itself and if that is truly so dictatorship must follow - and that worries me far more - for your sake included. No man or Lady can self pardon or else they are above the law which applies equally to ALL. If he murders someone before honest witnesses he can pardon himself? Are you serious? If so your justice system needs serious overhaul.


1. You have very little idea about our system of government.
2. Your "knowledge of his collusion" appears more a subjective and totally unsubstantiated opinion, based mainly on you not liking that he wants to improve ties with Russia.


Comey to be fair was lenient on your Agent Orange. He clearly regarded him as capable of brazenly lying and of collusion and of attempting to obstruct just


Hollywood Comey pretty much buried the issue.



The challenge, and I’m not picking on reporters about writing stories about classified information, is the people talking about it often don’t really know what’s going on, and going on are not talking about it. We don’t call the press to say, hey, you don’t that thing wrong about the sensitive topic. We have to leave it there.

Mihais
10 Jun 17,, 06:36
So,the whole Russian conspiracy hoopla turns to be bereft of evidence.
The whole affair was nothing but political charade.What a surprise!

What is significant is the degree of viciousness of internal US politics.That is hardly an encouraging sign.

snapper
10 Jun 17,, 06:38
Of course he could just release his tax returns and behold! All would be good. But he will not. Why? Perhaps he could explain why his son in law wished to set up a 'back channel' via the Muscovite Embassy as well? Why so many of his appointees have had concealed discussions with Moscow? Deny that that Moscow tried to interfere in your democratic process? Pigs may fly when dropped from a plane but this is not that sort of pig. It is treason.

Mihais
10 Jun 17,, 07:17
Btw,keeping with the idea.I don't think Kushner really works for Trump.Talking about webs :)

Triple C
10 Jun 17,, 11:14
He did not collude with Russia. He is not a traitor. His power of pardon is absolute.

I think you are conflating several things. That the US president may theoretically pardon himself does not imply that he can commit no crimes; that a person is pardoned of a crime creates no statement regarding the validity of the law itself.

After all, the president can theoretically pardon anyone of any crimes whatsoever; that does not mean there are no laws or crimes in America.

Also, the president has no power to pardon himself from impeachment. Additionally, the allegation is not that Trump had lawfully ordered the investigation to cease; it is that he tried to influence its outcome by thinly veiled threats and demands that the FBI director should kiss the ring.

In fact, an official may commit the crime of obstruction by closing an investigation, even if he or she is authorized to do so.

As for alleged collusion with Russia, that chapter of US history hasn't been written.

DOR
10 Jun 17,, 12:38
He did not collude with Russia. He is not a traitor. His power of pardon is absolute.

Careful you don't choke when chugging that Kool Aid

surfgun
10 Jun 17,, 13:11
So when will leaker Comey be indicted? He may be able to provide some helpful tips to Ms. Reality Winner to be a bit more covert about leaking government information?

bfng3569
12 Jun 17,, 15:12
That your faith in his patriotism is touching it does not sway my knowledge of his collusion. If he just released his full tax returns it would provide grounds for his removal. But what you are actually arguing is that an executive can pardon itself and if that is truly so dictatorship must follow - and that worries me far more - for your sake included. No man or Lady can self pardon or else they are above the law which applies equally to ALL. If he murders someone before honest witnesses he can pardon himself? Are you serious? If so your justice system needs serious overhaul.



Comey to be fair was lenient on your Agent Orange. He clearly regarded him as capable of brazenly lying and of collusion and of attempting to obstruct justice. If you wish to believe Muscovite inspired Trumpetian spiel in total and directly disregard all the evidence - much of which has still to be spilt - be my guest. I cannot help you.

What we were speaking of though is if the rule of law applies equally to all... would you agree that it should? Or perhaps that the singular 'pussy grabber' and former TV personality/'celebrity', narcissist liar, former bankrupt etc etc is alone in this special category and may murder anyone he wishes? I pray he does not light upon you in advance.

so you have the evidence of this collusion that no one else has?????

awesome! about time we got some facts in this case.

so what are they?

what is your evidence and your knowledge of this collusion? and when will you be testifying before congress, I am sure they are eager for actual facts.

GVChamp
12 Jun 17,, 16:03
GVChamp,



or you know, 9 times in 4 months...lol.

bottom-line is, yeah, Obama was inexperienced in 2008 but nor was he utterly ignorant and absolutely without honor or character. it is interesting that Comey felt the need to state that after his very first meeting with Trump, he felt compelled to document every meeting because he sensed right off the bat that Trump was a liar.
I haven't followed this particular bungle all that closely, but I listened to around 20 minutes of the Comey testimony. From what I remember, he said:

1. Trump brought dropping any part of the Russian investigation once.
2. Trump did not mention anything about stopping the Russian investigation. He said he wanted Comey to go easy on Flynn. He also said he wants to know if any of his subordinates did anything illegal or improper.
3. Trump never ordered Comey to stop the investigation. He asked Comey to go easy. Comey said he took this as an order, but said there was no explicit order.
4. Trump asked Comey to reveal that Trump himself was not under investigation, which the Gang of Eight already knew.

None of these seemed to be substantially under doubt. Even the Democrats asking Comey questions were making a big to-do about how intimidating the Oval Office was.

I don't see the problem with any of what Trump has done, based on what I heard. Democrats from base voter to Gang of Eight are systemically leaking incomplete information and creating a media narrative to imply Trump himself was colluding with Russia in order to remove him from the office. It's not at all unusual for a normal person to want to see what parts of the federal government will help him combat this notion, especially since everything turned out has essentially been molehills morphed into mountains by moronic press agents (which Comey said as much himself). Unusual? Perhaps, but "ignorant" of norms is not the same as "dishonorable." And certainly nothing amounting to high crime, treason, or anything of the sort.


There's definitely someone undermining American institutions, but it ain't Trump. As far as I am concerned, the Democrats are collectively less than a generation from March on Rome territory. At this point, I'm tuning out all the Russia stuff, and am assuming it's much ado about nothing. The Dems had their prime-time shot and they blew it.

astralis
12 Jun 17,, 16:14
GVChamp,


Unusual? Perhaps, but "ignorant" of norms is not the same as "dishonorable."

uh...right, "ignorant" of norms. because it was just a naive ignorance of norms to empty out a room to talk to the FBI director alone, and to badger him repeatedly to end an investigation into one of your associates and clear your name. the main impetus of the Comey testimony was him testifying as to the character of the man (ie the repeated assertion of Trump as a liar), because the rest either trods on Mueller's territory or goes into the classified arena.


At this point, I'm tuning out all the Russia stuff, and am assuming it's much ado about nothing. The Dems had their prime-time shot and they blew it.

Comey's goal was to get a special counsel appointed. he succeeded in that. Mueller is ultimately going to be the one that damns or exonerates Trump, not Comey.

in any case, the issue of being "without honor or character" goes far beyond the Russia debacle, and of course is a different issue from impeachment/crimes/etc etc. i used the Comey testimony as just the most recent example of the low character of Trump, but plenty of other examples abound about our Grabben-fuhrer and Trump U conman.

Ironduke
13 Jun 17,, 00:48
So when will leaker Comey be indicted? He may be able to provide some helpful tips to Ms. Reality Winner to be a bit more covert about leaking government information?
What did Comey leak?

He released his account of conversations he had with Trump. Only after Trump characterized him as a liar, nutjob, and claimed via Twitter that Comey engaged in incriminating actions during the meetings and phone calls that Trump initiated.

Comey simply got his side of the story out, after Trump attempted to pre-emptively assassinate Comey's character.

There's a vast difference between leaking national security secrets (and Comey leaked none) and getting your side of the story out after a highly publicized evisceration, that Trump himself initiated in the wake of Comey's firing, and responding to attempts at character asassassination.

Comey merely stood up for himself and his reputation.

Wooglin
13 Jun 17,, 02:49
Lol

43906

bfng3569
13 Jun 17,, 14:21
GVChamp,



uh...right, "ignorant" of norms. because it was just a naive ignorance of norms to empty out a room to talk to the FBI director alone, and to badger him repeatedly to end an investigation into one of your associates and clear your name. the main impetus of the Comey testimony was him testifying as to the character of the man (ie the repeated assertion of Trump as a liar), because the rest either trods on Mueller's territory or goes into the classified arena.



Comey's goal was to get a special counsel appointed. he succeeded in that. Mueller is ultimately going to be the one that damns or exonerates Trump, not Comey.

in any case, the issue of being "without honor or character" goes far beyond the Russia debacle, and of course is a different issue from impeachment/crimes/etc etc. i used the Comey testimony as just the most recent example of the low character of Trump, but plenty of other examples abound about our Grabben-fuhrer and Trump U conman.

the same FBI that set the precedent of meeting one on one with trump to inform him of the 'Russian dossier'.

Comey's goal was to extract his pound of flesh, and he did so.

Politics at it's finest.

if nothing comes from Session's testimony in regards to a mysterious 'third' meeting, then Comey is even more fried.

hboGYT
13 Jun 17,, 14:58
The suspicious part about Trump's conversation with Comey is that he asked everyone else to leave the room. He clearly knew his action was inappropriate. This is congruous with notion that Trump chose indirect wording to maintain plausible deniability.

In any case, Trump should resign. It is clear that he has lost the people's confidence

Wooglin
13 Jun 17,, 15:46
The suspicious part about Trump's conversation with Comey is that he asked everyone else to leave the room. He clearly knew his action was inappropriate. This is congruous with notion that Trump chose indirect wording to maintain plausible deniability.

In any case, Trump should resign. It is clear that he has lost the people's confidence

The guy who has shown time and again he has no filter between brain and mouth suddenly becomes a master wordsmith to skillfully tread the line.... ok. Sure.

hboGYT
13 Jun 17,, 16:31
The guy who has shown time and again he has no filter between brain and mouth suddenly becomes a master wordsmith to skillfully tread the line.... ok. Sure.

That he thought he could shield himself sufficiently by asking Comey to drop the Flynn investigation in a roundabout way - an incorrect assessment, only adds to his track record of poor judgement. I think my story is more convincing than yours.

snapper
14 Jun 17,, 02:51
so you have the evidence of this collusion that no one else has?????

awesome! about time we got some facts in this case.

so what are they?

what is your evidence and your knowledge of this collusion? and when will you be testifying before congress, I am sure they are eager for actual facts.

Sir I have had far more dealings in these and other such matters in the past than I can reasonably guess you have - if I am wrong forgive me for the presumption. I am not obliged to the US or any of it's institutions and would decline any offer to testify before some committee of politicians as the country to which I am honoured to owe allegiance to has been in the field against the Muscovites and their proxies for three years and I do not think it may be wise in my own future interests.

zraver
14 Jun 17,, 04:37
What did Comey leak?

He released his account of conversations he had with Trump. Only after Trump characterized him as a liar, nutjob, and claimed via Twitter that Comey engaged in incriminating actions during the meetings and phone calls that Trump initiated.

Comey simply got his side of the story out, after Trump attempted to pre-emptively assassinate Comey's character.

There's a vast difference between leaking national security secrets (and Comey leaked none) and getting your side of the story out after a highly publicized evisceration, that Trump himself initiated in the wake of Comey's firing, and responding to attempts at character asassassination.

Comey merely stood up for himself and his reputation.

Comey leaked government notes, not his. All his work product belonged to the FBI/DoJ or was protected executive branch communications. He violated the federal record keeping act which is a felony and may have leaked classified information. He was not a classification authority to decide what level of classification his memos should have been afforded.

zraver
14 Jun 17,, 04:40
That he thought he could shield himself sufficiently by asking Comey to drop the Flynn investigation in a roundabout way - an incorrect assessment, only adds to his track record of poor judgement. I think my story is more convincing than yours.

He could have ordered Comey to drop it via twitter post and it would still be legal. All executive power resides in the person and office of the president and is delegated from him. It might run counter to tradition and policy, but it would not run counter to law. The president holds the power of pardon. No one gets prosecuted let alone convicted for a federal crime without his tacit consent.

hboGYT
14 Jun 17,, 05:02
He could have ordered Comey to drop it via twitter post and it would still be legal. All executive power resides in the person and office of the president and is delegated from him. It might run counter to tradition and policy, but it would not run counter to law. The president holds the power of pardon. No one gets prosecuted let alone convicted for a federal crime without his tacit consent.

I don't really care whether it's legal or not, only whether it's impeachable or not. An action doesn't need to be illegal to be impeachable. Otherwise a president can just pardon himself constantly pardon himself and be immune from impeachment.

astralis
14 Jun 17,, 05:12
z,


Comey leaked government notes, not his. All his work product belonged to the FBI/DoJ or was protected executive branch communications. He violated the federal record keeping act which is a felony and may have leaked classified information. He was not a classification authority to decide what level of classification his memos should have been afforded.

there was nothing classified.

Trump hasn't asserted executive privilege on the memos, or the testimony-- and he referred to the conversations with Comey when he fired the man, which heavily weakens the executive privilege argument.

and if these notes were Comey's private notes and not written on an official FBI form or as part of a FBI investigation, then no, it would not belong to the FBI/DOJ.

bottom-line, if there were a serious case against Comey here, Trump and the DOJ would have acted on it. they don't, so they won't-- and Trump will just continue to snipe from Twitter.

astralis
14 Jun 17,, 05:14
hboGYT,


Otherwise a president can just pardon himself constantly pardon himself and be immune from impeachment.

that's one of the exceptions to the powers of pardon.

DOR
14 Jun 17,, 10:05
Comey leaked government notes, not his. All his work product belonged to the FBI/DoJ or was protected executive branch communications. He violated the federal record keeping act which is a felony and may have leaked classified information. He was not a classification authority to decide what level of classification his memos should have been afforded.

So, Comey was in a no-win situation.
Assuming -- a huge assumption -- that he was formally ordered by POTUS to deny access to his notes to the Senate Intelligence Committee, and compelled to provide testimony to that same committee, it would appear from your assessment that he is going to federal prison just because he was caught between two felonies.

Is that your understanding?
Do you have a copy of that POTUS order?

hboGYT
14 Jun 17,, 11:18
https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2017/06/08/were-james-comeys-leaks-lawful/?utm_term=.37db0733057b

snapper
14 Jun 17,, 12:14
It cannot be possible that any man (or Lady) engaged in some official state business of any kind is not permitted to keep their own private notes or speak to their private friends or family in any matter whatsoever regarding the Governments policies and problems. It would disclude any private life or thoughts of those employed by any Government.

The question is why Comey was removed from office and on that - from Trump - we have had three versions which do not agree. Now it rumoured apparently that 'special counsel' Mueller is to be dismissed. How much obstruction of an investigation into a matter of serious national security will be permitted before Congress acts?

bfng3569
14 Jun 17,, 16:30
Sir I have had far more dealings in these and other such matters in the past than I can reasonably guess you have - if I am wrong forgive me for the presumption. I am not obliged to the US or any of it's institutions and would decline any offer to testify before some committee of politicians as the country to which I am honoured to owe allegiance to has been in the field against the Muscovites and their proxies for three years and I do not think it may be wise in my own future interests.

so you have nothing then.

because so in I don't even know how many investigations that have been going on for I don't even know how long, no one else has come up with anything either.

so far all you have done is expressed paranoia and conspiracy theories, nothing else.

surfgun
14 Jun 17,, 18:08
z,



there was nothing classified.

Trump hasn't asserted executive privilege on the memos, or the testimony-- and he referred to the conversations with Comey when he fired the man, which heavily weakens the executive privilege argument.

and if these notes were Comey's private notes and not written on an official FBI form or as part of a FBI investigation, then no, it would not belong to the FBI/DOJ.

bottom-line, if there were a serious case against Comey here, Trump and the DOJ would have acted on it. they don't, so they won't-- and Trump will just continue to snipe from Twitter.

It would not need to be on an FBI form! If he typed it on a government computer, typewriter or government issued paper, It was government property.

astralis
14 Jun 17,, 19:27
surfgun,


It would not need to be on an FBI form! If he typed it on a government computer, typewriter or government issued paper, It was government property.

if they're not part of the official investigation, then the relevant statute is 18 U.S. Code § 641.

https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/641


Whoever embezzles, steals, purloins, or knowingly converts to his use or the use of another, or without authority, sells, conveys or disposes of any record, voucher, money, or thing of value of the United States or of any department or agency thereof, or any property made or being made under contract for the United States or any department or agency thereof; or

Whoever receives, conceals, or retains the same with intent to convert it to his use or gain, knowing it to have been embezzled, stolen, purloined or converted—

Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both; but if the value of such property in the aggregate, combining amounts from all the counts for which the defendant is convicted in a single case, does not exceed the sum of $1,000, he shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both.

aka did Comey make money off this.

to put it mildly, this is not a strong legal argument. again, there's a reason why no one is pushing full steam ahead on pursuing a legal case against Comey's actions.

surfgun
14 Jun 17,, 20:40
There are other definitions of "gain" other than financial.
We are dealing with lawyers.

snapper
14 Jun 17,, 21:49
so you have nothing then.

because so in I don't even know how many investigations that have been going on for I don't even know how long, no one else has come up with anything either.

so far all you have done is expressed paranoia and conspiracy theories, nothing else.

Would this be the right place or you the correct authority to relay such information to? I must question that.

astralis
15 Jun 17,, 14:57
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/special-counsel-is-investigating-trump-for-possible-obstruction-of-justice/2017/06/14/9ce02506-5131-11e7-b064-828ba60fbb98_story.html

Special counsel is investigating Trump for possible obstruction of justice, officials say

By Devlin Barrett, Adam Entous, Ellen Nakashima and Sari Horwitz
June 14 at 6:21 PM

The special counsel overseeing the investigation into Russia’s role in the 2016 election is interviewing senior intelligence officials as part of a widening probe that now includes an examination of whether President Trump attempted to obstruct justice, officials said.

The move by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III to investigate Trump’s conduct marks a major turning point in the nearly year-old FBI investigation, which until recently focused on Russian meddling during the presidential campaign and on whether there was any coordination between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin. Investigators have also been looking for any evidence of possible financial crimes among Trump associates, officials said.

Trump had received private assurances from then-FBI Director James B. Comey starting in January that he was not personally under investigation. Officials say that changed shortly after Comey’s firing.

Five people briefed on the interview requests, speaking on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly, said that Daniel Coats, the current director of national intelligence, Mike Rogers, head of the National Security Agency, and Rogers’s recently departed deputy, Richard Ledgett, agreed to be interviewed by Mueller’s investigators as early as this week. The investigation has been cloaked in secrecy, and it is unclear how many others have been questioned by the FBI.
A guide to the five major investigations of the Trump campaign’s possible ties to Russia View Graphic

The NSA said in a statement that it will “fully cooperate with the special counsel” and declined to comment further. The office of the director of national intelligence and Ledgett declined to comment.

The White House now refers all questions about the Russia investigation to Trump’s personal attorney, Marc Kasowitz.

“The FBI leak of information regarding the president is outrageous, inexcusable and illegal,” said Mark Corallo, a spokesman for Kasowitz.

The officials said Coats, Rogers and Ledgett would appear voluntarily, though it remains unclear whether they will describe in full their conversations with Trump and other top officials or will be directed by the White House to invoke executive privilege. It is doubtful that the White House could ultimately use executive privilege to try to block them from speaking to Mueller’s investigators. Experts point out that the Supreme Court ruled during the Watergate scandal that officials cannot use privilege to withhold evidence in criminal prosecutions.

The obstruction-of-justice investigation of the president began days after Comey was fired on May 9, according to people familiar with the matter. Mueller’s office has taken up that work, and the preliminary interviews scheduled with intelligence officials indicate that his team is actively pursuing potential witnesses inside and outside the government.

[Inside Trump’s anger and impatience — and his sudden decision to fire Comey]

The interviews suggest that Mueller sees the question of attempted obstruction of justice as more than just a “he said, he said” dispute between the president and the fired FBI director, an official said.

Investigating Trump for possible crimes is a complicated affair, even if convincing evidence of a crime were found. The Justice Department has long held that it would not be appropriate to indict a sitting president. Instead, experts say, the onus would be on Congress to review any findings of criminal misconduct and then decide whether to initiate impeachment proceedings.

Comey confirmed publicly in congressional testimony on March 20 that the bureau was investigating possible coordination between the Trump campaign and the Russians.

Comey’s statement before the House Intelligence Committee upset Trump, who has repeatedly denied that any coordination with the Russians took place. Trump had wanted Comey to disclose publicly that he was not personally under investigation, but the FBI director refused to do so.

Soon after, Trump spoke to Coats and Rogers about the Russia investigation.

Officials said one of the exchanges of potential interest to Mueller took place on March 22, less than a week after Coats was confirmed by the Senate to serve as the nation’s top intelligence official.

Coats was attending a briefing at the White House with officials from several other government agencies. When the briefing ended, as The Washington Post previously reported, Trump asked everyone to leave the room except for Coats and CIA Director Mike Pompeo.

Coats told associates that Trump had asked him whether Coats could intervene with Comey to get the bureau to back off its focus on former national security adviser Michael Flynn in its Russia probe, according to officials. Coats later told lawmakers that he never felt pressured to intervene.

A day or two after the March 22 meeting, Trump telephoned Coats and Rogers to separately ask them to issue public statements denying the existence of any evidence of coordination between his campaign and the Russian government.

Coats and Rogers refused to comply with the president’s requests, officials said.

It is unclear whether Ledgett had direct contact with Trump or other top officials about the Russia probe, but he wrote an internal NSA memo documenting the president’s phone call with Rogers, according to officials.

As part of the probe, the special counsel has also gathered Comey’s written accounts of his conversations with Trump. The president has accused Comey of lying about those encounters.

Mueller is overseeing a host of investigations involving people who are or were in Trump’s orbit, people familiar with the probe said. The investigation is examining possible contacts with Russian operatives as well as any suspicious financial activity related to those individuals.

Last week, Comey told the Senate Intelligence Committee that he had informed Trump that there was no investigation of the president’s personal conduct, at least while he was leading the FBI.

Comey’s carefully worded comments, and those of Andrew McCabe, who took over as acting FBI director, suggested to some officials that an investigation of Trump for attempted obstruction may have been launched after Comey’s departure, particularly in light of Trump’s alleged statements regarding Flynn.

“I took it as a very disturbing thing, very concerning, but that’s a conclusion I’m sure the special counsel will work towards, to try and understand what the intention was there, and whether that’s an offense,” Comey testified last week.

Mueller has not publicly discussed his work, and a spokesman for the special counsel declined to comment.

Accounts by Comey and other officials of their conversations with the president could become central pieces of evidence if Mueller decides to pursue an obstruction case.

Investigators will also look for any statements the president may have made publicly and privately to people outside the government about his reasons for firing Comey and his concerns about the Russia probe and other related investigations, people familiar with the matter said.

Comey testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee last week that he was certain his firing was due to the president’s concerns about the Russia probe, rather than over his handling of a now-closed FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server as secretary of state, as the White House had initially asserted. “It’s my judgment that I was fired because of the Russia investigation,” Comey said. “I was fired, in some way, to change — or the endeavor was to change the way the Russia investigation was being conducted.”

The fired FBI director said ultimately it was up to Mueller to make a determination whether the president crossed a legal line.

In addition to describing his interactions with the president, Comey told the Intelligence Committee that while he was FBI director he told Trump on three occasions that he was not under investigation as part of a counterintelligence probe looking at Russian meddling in the election.

Republican lawmakers seized on Comey’s testimony to point out that Trump was not in the FBI’s crosshairs when Comey led the bureau.

After Comey’s testimony, in which he acknowledged telling Trump that he was not under investigation, Trump tweeted that he felt “total and complete vindication.” It is unclear whether McCabe, Comey’s successor, has informed Trump of the change in the scope of the probe.

bfng3569
15 Jun 17,, 19:03
Would this be the right place or you the correct authority to relay such information to? I must question that.

like I'm questioning your claim that you wont provide proof of?

but to answer your question, yes, this would be the right place.

Double Edge
15 Jun 17,, 21:49
So,the whole Russian conspiracy hoopla turns to be bereft of evidence.
The whole affair was nothing but political charade.What a surprise!
Well something happened in Oct last when all 16 Intel orgs got together and accused Russia of meddling in the elections and then some compounds were closed and 35 people got told to pack their bags and go home.


What is significant is the degree of viciousness of internal US politics.That is hardly an encouraging sign.
What I read is when the soviet union collapsed the two parties turned on each other given the lack of any further external threat. That's the day bipartisanship died in the US.

Double Edge
15 Jun 17,, 21:56
That is not fair, almost all of the political violence in the country flows Left to Right, not Right to Left. Name a Trump supporter who killed or bombed?
Unfortunately we had a recent reminder here when a shooter fired at some Republicans when they were having a ball game. Message is pretty clear.

How's that vote to repeal Obama care coming along senators.

This kind of violence is worse than any terrorism. It's a direct attack on your government

antimony
15 Jun 17,, 22:57
That is not fair, almost all of the political violence in the country flows Left to Right, not Right to Left. Name a Trump supporter who killed or bombed?

Easy peasy,

Elizabeth and Marc Hoakana who shot at Josh Dukes
Adam Purinton in Kansas, who shot the Indian engineer Srini Kuchibotla, while shouting "get out of my country"
Another sikh man was shot in Kent, WA while the assailant screamed "go back to your country"
The number of temples and synagogues, mosques and temples getting vandalized

And then on this board, there is a poster (I am sure I can find the post) who threatens that the Federal agents will descend on those who protest

Right wing political violence is for all to see once the blinkers are taken off.

The Left wing creates a ruckus, the right reacts with guns, hatred and deadly force

Double Edge
16 Jun 17,, 01:37
Antimony, Z did mention this after


Name one Leftist political rally shut down or even seriously disrupted by the Rightwing. On the Left we have how many riots by BLM, how many Trump rallies and conservative speaking engagements attacked by the anti-fa, we have tapes of the Left planning to disrupt rallies and town halls. Rightwing violence in the US is relatively rare and tends towards racist or religious not political.

Political has a wider impact is his point.

zraver
16 Jun 17,, 03:13
z,



there was nothing classified.

Trump hasn't asserted executive privilege on the memos, or the testimony-- and he referred to the conversations with Comey when he fired the man, which heavily weakens the executive privilege argument.

and if these notes were Comey's private notes and not written on an official FBI form or as part of a FBI investigation, then no, it would not belong to the FBI/DOJ.

bottom-line, if there were a serious case against Comey here, Trump and the DOJ would have acted on it. they don't, so they won't-- and Trump will just continue to snipe from Twitter.

Uhm no, all work product belongs to the government; the law is crystal clear on that. Further, all conversations with the president are born classified and Comey did not have the classification authority to say they were not classified.

hboGYT
I don't really care whether it's legal or not, only whether it's impeachable or not. An action doesn't need to be illegal to be impeachable. Otherwise a president can just pardon himself constantly pardon himself and be immune from impeachment.

A single pardon properly worded can cover all crimes; real, alleged, mythical, past, present and future. At this point I kinda want Trump to pardon his entire inner circle and tweet FU Dems. After all it doesn't matter to them if he is innocent or not... 10 months and zero evidence of any collusion and zero interest in why the DNC would not let the FBI does a forensic sweep of their computers (the GOP did). Its all political theater by people who reject our constitutional system AND WHO ARE upset their god-queen didn't win.

zraver
16 Jun 17,, 03:32
Easy peasy,

Elizabeth and Marc Hoakana who shot at Josh Dukes
Adam Purinton in Kansas, who shot the Indian engineer Srini Kuchibotla, while shouting "get out of my country"
Another sikh man was shot in Kent, WA while the assailant screamed "go back to your country"
The number of temples and synagogues, mosques and temples getting vandalized

And then on this board, there is a poster (I am sure I can find the post) who threatens that the Federal agents will descend on those who protest

Right wing political violence is for all to see once the blinkers are taken off.

The Left wing creates a ruckus, the right reacts with guns, hatred and deadly force

Hoakana's, ruled a justified self defense shooting. Elizabeth shot Josh Duke when he attacked her husband at a Trump rally. Josh went there to beat up Trump supporters and got shot attacking an old man. Color me unimpressed. The Sihk shot in Kent, no description of the shooter. As the Bernie Bro Portland stabber shows, racism isn't exclusively a rightwing thing. Given that Kent went what 99% for HRC in November, I think chances are you need to look blue for the shooter. Hell based on the number of white people dragged outta cars during the BLM riots, I would wager its more common on the Left. Those temples, synagogues, graveyards etc, usually done by one of their own, or a leftie. Remember the big Mosque fire in Texas in March? Burned by a Hispanic. The bomb threats against synagogues either Thompson a liberal reporter or a Jewish boy in Israel. In fact given the GOP's love of Israel and the Left's love of BDS, I'd wager antisemitism is orders of magnitude more common on the Left.

In short you provided one guy, not really evidence of system gun play and racism. Political violence in the US is mostly Left to Right.

astralis
16 Jun 17,, 04:05
Uhm no, all work product belongs to the government; the law is crystal clear on that.

Comey made personal notes, they weren't FBI products.

you can try to use 18 U.S. Code § 641 but that's not a strong defense. which is again why there's been no case opened against Comey.


Further, all conversations with the president are born classified

lol no.......where'd you dig THAT legal gem up?

zraver
16 Jun 17,, 05:04
Comey made personal notes, they weren't FBI products.

you can try to use 18 U.S. Code § 641 but that's not a strong defense. which is again why there's been no case opened against Comey./quote]

His notes regarding official business are work product and belong to the government. This would not even be an issue if not for the political theater. Petraus was convicted based on what he kept in personal notebooks.



[quote]lol no.......where'd you dig THAT legal gem up?

EO 12456. Since private discussions with the president reveal the inner workings of government and since the president has right to unfettered communications and advice his conversations are born classified. Comey did not have the legal right to make those discussions public.

antimony
16 Jun 17,, 05:20
Hoakana's, ruled a justified self defense shooting. Elizabeth shot Josh Duke when he attacked her husband at a Trump rally. Josh went there to beat up Trump supporters and got shot attacking an old man. Color me unimpressed.

You can continue to get your info from biased sources, or you can open your eyes. The man had to warn his wife to calm down and not shoot anyone. They were looking for a fight. What's more, in the comments section of the news outlets that carried the story, there are people who "enjoyed the video" and want this to happen more often. Yeah, a bunch of "peaceful" right wingers.



The Sihk shot in Kent, no description of the shooter. As the Bernie Bro Portland stabber shows, racism isn't exclusively a rightwing thing. Given that Kent went what 99% for HRC in November, I think chances are you need to look blue for the shooter. Hell based on the number of white people dragged outta cars during the BLM riots, I would wager its more common on the Left.


Yeah the shooter was tree hugging liberal who wanted the Sikh guy to leave so that he could plant more trees to hug.



Those temples, synagogues, graveyards etc, usually done by one of their own, or a leftie.

And you know this because you were hiding in the bushes when this happened.



Remember the big Mosque fire in Texas in March? Burned by a Hispanic. The bomb threats against synagogues either Thompson a liberal reporter or a Jewish boy in Israel. In fact given the GOP's love of Israel and the Left's love of BDS, I'd wager antisemitism is orders of magnitude more common on the Left.


This is not about the GOP or the Democratic Party. This is about crazed wingnuts. I give credit to the fact that you obviously do not hang around Infowars or Breitbart comments section, or you would see how wrong you are about this supposed love of Jews.



In short you provided one guy, not really evidence of system gun play and racism. Political violence in the US is mostly Left to Right.

As I have said earlier, the left creates noise, the right brings guns.

antimony
16 Jun 17,, 05:23
A single pardon properly worded can cover all crimes; real, alleged, mythical, past, present and future. At this point I kinda want Trump to pardon his entire inner circle and tweet FU Dems. After all it doesn't matter to them if he is innocent or not... 10 months and zero evidence of any collusion and zero interest in why the DNC would not let the FBI does a forensic sweep of their computers (the GOP did). Its all political theater by people who reject our constitutional system AND WHO ARE upset their god-queen didn't win.

I for one am with you. I would even go ahead and say it would be fun to watch him fire Mueller. I can't wait for all of Trump's agenda to be implemented, ASAP, including the "mean" Healthcare agenda.

zraver
16 Jun 17,, 12:40
You can continue to get your info from biased sources, or you can open your eyes. The man had to warn his wife to calm down and not shoot anyone. They were looking for a fight. What's more, in the comments section of the news outlets that carried the story, there are people who "enjoyed the video" and want this to happen more often. Yeah, a bunch of "peaceful" right wingers.[/qupte]

People don't like being attacked. Prosecutors looked at it, it was ruled justified. Josh was the agressor.

[quote]Yeah the shooter was tree hugging liberal who wanted the Sikh guy to leave so that he could plant more trees to hug.

Shooter is unknown. We don;t even have a description of the shooter to base anything on.


And you know this because you were hiding in the bushes when this happened.

No becuase there is a web site that follows these attacks and lists the perps when known.


This is not about the GOP or the Democratic Party. This is about crazed wingnuts.

I thought it was about Left vs Right political violence.


I give credit to the fact that you obviously do not hang around Infowars or Breitbart comments section, or you would see how wrong you are about this supposed love of Jews.

I don't, but isn't Breitbart run by Jews, isn't Breitbart a Jewish name?


As I have said earlier, the left creates noise, the right brings guns.

DC Beltway Sniper, SLA, Weather Underground, Baseball shooter, Gabbi Giffords shooter, ELF/ALF, the Anti-fa molotovs and arson attacks..... bombs, guns arson, real noisy going back decades.

zraver
16 Jun 17,, 12:41
I for one am with you. I would even go ahead and say it would be fun to watch him fire Mueller. I can't wait for all of Trump's agenda to be implemented, ASAP, including the "mean" Healthcare agenda.

Obamacare is an unfolding disaster... premiums and deductibles too high for me to use insurance. If I can't use it, why pay for it?

hboGYT
16 Jun 17,, 13:47
Obamacare is an unfolding disaster... premiums and deductibles too high for me to use insurance. If I can't use it, why pay for it?

I disagree. In the grand scheme of things, it's a huge breakthrough. It's brought single-payer systems into public discourse. Obamacare appears to me as a compromised solution to appease the conservatives. Conservatives must share the blame for its failings.

DOR
16 Jun 17,, 15:40
Obamacare is an unfolding disaster... premiums and deductibles too high for me to use insurance. If I can't use it, why pay for it?

It isn't always, and only about you.
Obviously, if you can't afford it, you are (a) being denied subsidies by your GOPer state government; (b) or you have sufficient income to not need such assiatance. If you are paying more than before, congratulations: you are now part of the better-off who help the less well-off.

antimony
16 Jun 17,, 16:45
People don't like being attacked. Prosecutors looked at it, it was ruled justified. Josh was the agressor.


Prosecutors allege the two, both 29, had armed themselves — he with pepper-spray and she with a Glock semi-automatic handgun in a holster under her coat — and went to the protest intending to goad demonstrators they knew would be there. They have also said that the couple is a danger to the community



Shooter is unknown. We don;t even have a description of the shooter to base anything on.

No becuase there is a web site that follows these attacks and lists the perps when known.


Yes, we do, "Get out of this country". Same as Adam Purinton



I thought it was about Left vs Right political violence.


That is true. Left vs. right, not GOP vs Dem



I don't, but isn't Breitbart run by Jews, isn't Breitbart a Jewish name?


You have obviously not read about the threats from the Zionist global conspiracy. I credit you for that.



DC Beltway Sniper, SLA, Weather Underground, Baseball shooter, Gabbi Giffords shooter, ELF/ALF, the Anti-fa molotovs and arson attacks..... bombs, guns arson, real noisy going back decades.

I sometimes worry about you.

DC Beltway Sniper? So now every Jihadist is a "Left Wing" guy? I suppose ISIS is a vast Democratic Party conglomerate then. I miss the emojis

Gabbi Giffords shooter was a Leftie? Then Hitler must have been Gandhi in disguise. His beliefs (women should not hold positions of power, NASA faking spaceflights) reek of wingnut conspiracy theories )

For every Weather Underground, ELF or antifa, I would raise you 20 each of the patriot movements

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2017/06/16/boomer-antifa-white-supremacists-rip-into-paramilitary-oath-keepers-for-not-being-racist-enough/?utm_term=.dce3af8230cb

Ha, now even trolls have got into the fun

https://www.buzzfeed.com/briannasacks/trolls-tricked-hundreds-of-conservatives-to-hold-a-rally-to?utm_term=.jqOKMQXrZ#.nsZ1OaLvR

antimony
16 Jun 17,, 16:50
Obamacare is an unfolding disaster... premiums and deductibles too high for me to use insurance. If I can't use it, why pay for it?

Whatever Z, please, jut make sure that "Meancare" cuts every little benefit it is supposed to. I can't wait for the people to realize exactly what they have voted for.

drhuy
16 Jun 17,, 17:32
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/special-counsel-is-investigating-trump-for-possible-obstruction-of-justice/2017/06/14/9ce02506-5131-11e7-b064-828ba60fbb98_story.html

Special counsel is investigating Trump for possible obstruction of justice, officials say

By Devlin Barrett, Adam Entous, Ellen Nakashima and Sari Horwitz
June 14 at 6:21 PM

The special counsel overseeing the investigation into Russia’s role in the 2016 election is interviewing senior intelligence officials as part of a widening probe that now includes an examination of whether President Trump attempted to obstruct justice, officials said.

The move by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III to investigate Trump’s conduct marks a major turning point in the nearly year-old FBI investigation, which until recently focused on Russian meddling during the presidential campaign and on whether there was any coordination between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin. Investigators have also been looking for any evidence of possible financial crimes among Trump associates, officials said.

Trump had received private assurances from then-FBI Director James B. Comey starting in January that he was not personally under investigation. Officials say that changed shortly after Comey’s firing.

Five people briefed on the interview requests, speaking on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly, said that Daniel Coats, the current director of national intelligence, Mike Rogers, head of the National Security Agency, and Rogers’s recently departed deputy, Richard Ledgett, agreed to be interviewed by Mueller’s investigators as early as this week. The investigation has been cloaked in secrecy, and it is unclear how many others have been questioned by the FBI.
A guide to the five major investigations of the Trump campaign’s possible ties to Russia View Graphic

The NSA said in a statement that it will “fully cooperate with the special counsel” and declined to comment further. The office of the director of national intelligence and Ledgett declined to comment.

The White House now refers all questions about the Russia investigation to Trump’s personal attorney, Marc Kasowitz.

“The FBI leak of information regarding the president is outrageous, inexcusable and illegal,” said Mark Corallo, a spokesman for Kasowitz.

The officials said Coats, Rogers and Ledgett would appear voluntarily, though it remains unclear whether they will describe in full their conversations with Trump and other top officials or will be directed by the White House to invoke executive privilege. It is doubtful that the White House could ultimately use executive privilege to try to block them from speaking to Mueller’s investigators. Experts point out that the Supreme Court ruled during the Watergate scandal that officials cannot use privilege to withhold evidence in criminal prosecutions.

The obstruction-of-justice investigation of the president began days after Comey was fired on May 9, according to people familiar with the matter. Mueller’s office has taken up that work, and the preliminary interviews scheduled with intelligence officials indicate that his team is actively pursuing potential witnesses inside and outside the government.

[Inside Trump’s anger and impatience — and his sudden decision to fire Comey]

The interviews suggest that Mueller sees the question of attempted obstruction of justice as more than just a “he said, he said” dispute between the president and the fired FBI director, an official said.

Investigating Trump for possible crimes is a complicated affair, even if convincing evidence of a crime were found. The Justice Department has long held that it would not be appropriate to indict a sitting president. Instead, experts say, the onus would be on Congress to review any findings of criminal misconduct and then decide whether to initiate impeachment proceedings.

Comey confirmed publicly in congressional testimony on March 20 that the bureau was investigating possible coordination between the Trump campaign and the Russians.

Comey’s statement before the House Intelligence Committee upset Trump, who has repeatedly denied that any coordination with the Russians took place. Trump had wanted Comey to disclose publicly that he was not personally under investigation, but the FBI director refused to do so.

Soon after, Trump spoke to Coats and Rogers about the Russia investigation.

Officials said one of the exchanges of potential interest to Mueller took place on March 22, less than a week after Coats was confirmed by the Senate to serve as the nation’s top intelligence official.

Coats was attending a briefing at the White House with officials from several other government agencies. When the briefing ended, as The Washington Post previously reported, Trump asked everyone to leave the room except for Coats and CIA Director Mike Pompeo.

Coats told associates that Trump had asked him whether Coats could intervene with Comey to get the bureau to back off its focus on former national security adviser Michael Flynn in its Russia probe, according to officials. Coats later told lawmakers that he never felt pressured to intervene.

A day or two after the March 22 meeting, Trump telephoned Coats and Rogers to separately ask them to issue public statements denying the existence of any evidence of coordination between his campaign and the Russian government.

Coats and Rogers refused to comply with the president’s requests, officials said.

It is unclear whether Ledgett had direct contact with Trump or other top officials about the Russia probe, but he wrote an internal NSA memo documenting the president’s phone call with Rogers, according to officials.

As part of the probe, the special counsel has also gathered Comey’s written accounts of his conversations with Trump. The president has accused Comey of lying about those encounters.

Mueller is overseeing a host of investigations involving people who are or were in Trump’s orbit, people familiar with the probe said. The investigation is examining possible contacts with Russian operatives as well as any suspicious financial activity related to those individuals.

Last week, Comey told the Senate Intelligence Committee that he had informed Trump that there was no investigation of the president’s personal conduct, at least while he was leading the FBI.

Comey’s carefully worded comments, and those of Andrew McCabe, who took over as acting FBI director, suggested to some officials that an investigation of Trump for attempted obstruction may have been launched after Comey’s departure, particularly in light of Trump’s alleged statements regarding Flynn.

“I took it as a very disturbing thing, very concerning, but that’s a conclusion I’m sure the special counsel will work towards, to try and understand what the intention was there, and whether that’s an offense,” Comey testified last week.

Mueller has not publicly discussed his work, and a spokesman for the special counsel declined to comment.

Accounts by Comey and other officials of their conversations with the president could become central pieces of evidence if Mueller decides to pursue an obstruction case.

Investigators will also look for any statements the president may have made publicly and privately to people outside the government about his reasons for firing Comey and his concerns about the Russia probe and other related investigations, people familiar with the matter said.

Comey testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee last week that he was certain his firing was due to the president’s concerns about the Russia probe, rather than over his handling of a now-closed FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server as secretary of state, as the White House had initially asserted. “It’s my judgment that I was fired because of the Russia investigation,” Comey said. “I was fired, in some way, to change — or the endeavor was to change the way the Russia investigation was being conducted.”

The fired FBI director said ultimately it was up to Mueller to make a determination whether the president crossed a legal line.

In addition to describing his interactions with the president, Comey told the Intelligence Committee that while he was FBI director he told Trump on three occasions that he was not under investigation as part of a counterintelligence probe looking at Russian meddling in the election.

Republican lawmakers seized on Comey’s testimony to point out that Trump was not in the FBI’s crosshairs when Comey led the bureau.

After Comey’s testimony, in which he acknowledged telling Trump that he was not under investigation, Trump tweeted that he felt “total and complete vindication.” It is unclear whether McCabe, Comey’s successor, has informed Trump of the change in the scope of the probe.

so basically after failing miserably with the "russian collusion" BS, the left now turn the another conspiracy called "justice obstruction". jeez, and we have to endure this BS for another half year?

hboGYT
16 Jun 17,, 17:48
Whatever Z, please, jut make sure that "Meancare" cuts every little benefit it is supposed to. I can't wait for the people to realize exactly what they have voted for.

I have to disagree. Most of the poor, ignorant masses who voted for trump would not suffer any immediate consequences. Though within a few generations, some of their descents would. It's a matter of probability. Some people go through their lives without any major medical conditions, but eventually some of their offspring get sick. These people voted for Trump, so I doubt they'll figure it out.

drhuy
16 Jun 17,, 17:51
Most of the poor, ignorant masses who voted for trump would not suffer any immediate consequences

and of course you would be able to back this up with FACT & FIGURES?

hboGYT
16 Jun 17,, 18:00
and of course you would be able to back this up with FACT & FIGURES?

And you can prove me wrong? I grant you that I pulled that one out of my arse, but as long as a significant number of poor, ignorant people who voted for trump, my assertion holds. I know some Trump voters who fall outside of that category. They had their own reasons, which are most likely not Trump's empty promises.

drhuy
16 Jun 17,, 18:04
And you can prove me wrong?

And you can prove me wrong?

And you can prove me wrong?

And you can prove me wrong?

BWAHHAHA

its always a sign of "superb" intelligence when someone asks you to prove his ridiculous statement wrong rather than he proves it right

hboGYT
16 Jun 17,, 18:17
BWAHHAHA

its always a sign of "superb" intelligence when someone asks you to prove his ridiculous statement wrong rather than he proves it right

More of common knowledge than a ridiculous statement.

drhuy
16 Jun 17,, 18:37
More of common knowledge than a ridiculous statement.

right, just like "the earth is flat" is common knowledge to flat earthers

antimony
16 Jun 17,, 19:14
I have to disagree. Most of the poor, ignorant masses who voted for trump would not suffer any immediate consequences. Though within a few generations, some of their descents would. It's a matter of probability. Some people go through their lives without any major medical conditions, but eventually some of their offspring get sick. These people voted for Trump, so I doubt they'll figure it out.

Have you seen the townhalls? People are screaming that THEY WOULD DIE if their Healthcare is taken away

astralis
16 Jun 17,, 20:56
drhuy,


so basically after failing miserably with the "russian collusion" BS, the left now turn the another conspiracy called "justice obstruction". jeez, and we have to endure this BS for another half year?

you realize that the FBI/special counsel does not equate "the left", and that the FBI/special counsel can run more than one investigation at a time?

astralis
16 Jun 17,, 21:12
z,


Petraus was convicted based on what he kept in personal notebooks.

which contained classified information.


EO 12456. Since private discussions with the president reveal the inner workings of government and since the president has right to unfettered communications and advice his conversations are born classified. Comey did not have the legal right to make those discussions public.

a bit confused...

https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Executive_Order_12456

that has to do with pay.

regarding "private discussions with the President", no, they are not automatically classified under law. a President can claim executive privilege (which is different from it being -classified-) but in this case Trump waived this when he agreed to let Comey speak.

even had Trump not waived this, executive privilege is not absolute-- see US vs Nixon (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_v._Nixon).


Neither the doctrine of separation of powers nor the need for confidentiality of high-level communications, without more, can sustain an absolute, unqualified Presidential privilege of immunity from judicial process under all circumstances. The President’s need for complete candor and objectivity from advisers calls for great deference from the courts. However, when the privilege depends solely on the broad, undifferentiated claim of public interest in the confidentiality of such conversations, a confrontation with other values arises. Absent a claim of need to protect military, diplomatic, or sensitive national security secrets, we find it difficult to accept the argument that even the very important interest in confidentiality of Presidential communications is significantly diminished by production of such material for in camera inspection with all the protection that a district court will be obliged to provide.

tbm3fan
16 Jun 17,, 22:49
and of course you would be able to back this up with FACT & FIGURES?

He is actually far more right than you. How many voted for Trump in the supposedly Midwest Democratic bastions? When interviewed most acknowledge they were concerned with jobs first and foremost. Many of those same also acknowledge how their health insurance was through the ACA. Kind of Jekyll and Hyde hoping for jobs but not doing damage to the ACA. After four years they will find few jobs created by Trump in the Rust Belt while seeing their health coverage cut. I'm confident that will be the case so how confident are you that he will turn the Rust Belt into a place bustling with jobs looking for workers?

Anyway back to the basic thread about Comey's personal notes and now Mueller's investigation.

antimony
16 Jun 17,, 23:38
I have to disagree. Most of the poor, ignorant masses who voted for trump would not suffer any immediate consequences. Though within a few generations, some of their descents would. It's a matter of probability. Some people go through their lives without any major medical conditions, but eventually some of their offspring get sick. These people voted for Trump, so I doubt they'll figure it out.

That really is a disparaging way to refer to them

To answer your question, if the affected are in blue states they can ask their state legislators to solve the issue. CA and NV are trying to pass variations of Universal Healthcare right now. If they are in Red States, I would congratulate them and ask them to enjoy their newfound freedom

antimony
17 Jun 17,, 00:45
And oldie but not-goodie

Senator Rand Paul ✔ @RandPaul
.@Judgenap: Why do we have a Second Amendment? It's not to shoot deer. It's to shoot at the government when it becomes tyrannical!
9:48 AM - 23 Jun 2016

43938

hboGYT
17 Jun 17,, 01:07
As far as I can see, Trump basically promised to do more with less in relation to health care. It is only possible to optimise if the previous policies were sub-optimal. Obama said himself that if he could make the ACA better he would have done it. For Trump to keep his words, Obama needed to be either corrupt and/or grossly incompetent, or Trump needed to have gained the benefit of hindsight of some sort. I doubt either possibility. So, Trump had no idea what he was talking about. I mean who knew health care could be so complicated. Voters who counted his promises on health care must be poor enough to need cheap health insurance and ignorant enough to believe any of the two possibilities I mentioned before. I would have used far harsher words than ignorant.

zraver
17 Jun 17,, 04:00
It isn't always, and only about you.
Obviously, if you can't afford it, you are (a) being denied subsidies by your GOPer state government; (b) or you have sufficient income to not need such assiatance. If you are paying more than before, congratulations: you are now part of the better-off who help the less well-off.

I am not being denied subsidies, but they don't touch the deductibles. They are ruinous, who can afford 1/3 on the annual income in deductibles plus premiums and co-pays on top of that? So I have insurance I cannot use so people who don't work can see the doc for free.

zraver
17 Jun 17,, 04:10
You have obviously not read about the threats from the Zionist global conspiracy. I credit you for that.

Usually zionist is something the BDSers shout on college campuses. Are there rightwing antisemites, of course. But who has access to the levers of power/opinion? Raking israel over the coals on campuses across the nation will do a lot more to breed antisemitism than the idiots on Storm font or what ever its called. Best way to deal with antisemitism is too laugh at it. Not in the har har way, but the buahahahah full of scorn and derision sort of way. People hate feeling stupid.


I sometimes worry about you.

DC Beltway Sniper? So now every Jihadist is a "Left Wing" guy?

He was a member of the Nation of Islam which is leftist.



Gabbi Giffords shooter was a Leftie?

His friends describe him as a hard left radical and his reading list backed it up.


For every Weather Underground, ELF or antifa, I would raise you 20 each of the patriot movements

But who is actually throwing bombs and shooting people?

antimony
17 Jun 17,, 05:27
Usually zionist is something the BDSers shout on college campuses. Are there rightwing antisemites, of course. But who has access to the levers of power/opinion? Raking israel over the coals on campuses across the nation will do a lot more to breed antisemitism than the idiots on Storm font or what ever its called. Best way to deal with antisemitism is too laugh at it. Not in the har har way, but the buahahahah full of scorn and derision sort of way. People hate feeling stupid.


Strawman argument. Raking Israel over coals (which, if I may point out, you have done too) for malpractices over Palestinians is completely different from someone blaming Jews for their own economic state of affairs. The Bretibart and Infowars comments sections are full of omments on how a massive zionust conspiracy is somehow hurting real Americans. That mentality is far more dangerous than blaming Israel's settlement policy.



He was a member of the Nation of Islam which is leftist.


What do you mean, Leftist. The SPLC (which itself is Left of Center) termed it a hate group.



His friends describe him as a hard left radical and his reading list backed it up.


No they don't
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2011/jan/09/jared-lee-loughner-rightwing-rants

At any event we are talking about a paranoid schizophrenic. Not sure if schizophrenia has political colors.



But who is actually throwing bombs and shooting people?

Right now? Both

You want to know why? Because of shit like this.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S3HUVIZQc-Q

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1es9MZyyPOA

and lets not forget this

43938

hboGYT
17 Jun 17,, 11:30
I am not being denied subsidies, but they don't touch the deductibles. They are ruinous, who can afford 1/3 on the annual income in deductibles plus premiums and co-pays on top of that? So I have insurance I cannot use so people who don't work can see the doc for free.

You remind me of an economic text book I read a long time ago. On the topic of biases, the author wrote that a doctor and a government official would see different causes to the same food poisoning. The former sees Salmonella and the latter unsafe food handling as the cause.

You are blaming the wrong people for the plight of many disadvantaged Americans. Blame the conservatives you so love for obstructing progress towards a single payer system, not the ones who are actually trying to make a difference for YOU.

zraver
17 Jun 17,, 22:00
You remind me of an economic text book I read a long time ago. On the topic of biases, the author wrote that a doctor and a government official would see different causes to the same food poisoning. The former sees Salmonella and the latter unsafe food handling as the cause.

You are blaming the wrong people for the plight of many disadvantaged Americans. Blame the conservatives you so love for obstructing progress towards a single payer system, not the ones who are actually trying to make a difference for YOU.

I doubt you have ever read an economics book. If you had you would understand that free at point of service increases demand and thus increases costs.

zraver
17 Jun 17,, 22:06
Strawman argument. Raking Israel over coals (which, if I may point out, you have done too) for malpractices over Palestinians is completely different from someone blaming Jews for their own economic state of affairs. The Bretibart and Infowars comments sections are full of omments on how a massive zionust conspiracy is somehow hurting real Americans. That mentality is far more dangerous than blaming Israel's settlement policy.

I was always very careful to limit my criticisms to policy in the occupation zone and not of Judaism, Jews, or Israel's right to exists. That is not whats occurring on college campuses.


What do you mean, Leftist. The SPLC (which itself is Left of Center) termed it a hate group.

They align Left politically, left and hate are not mutually exclusive.


No they don't
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2011/jan/09/jared-lee-loughner-rightwing-rants

Yes they do


At any event we are talking about a paranoid schizophrenic. Not sure if schizophrenia has political colors.

A point I myself have made elsewhere, but he was left before insane.


Right now? Both


No, only one side is actually shooting and throwing molotovs.

Incredibly dishonest of you. Severed heads, mock assassinations at Shakespeare in the Park, politicians calling for people to fight in the streets... All recent, yet you want to go back to a campaign closing on a year ago, where a candidate got pissed that lefties were violently crashing his rallies like SA Brownshirts in the 30's.

astralis
17 Jun 17,, 22:34
all of this is a fundamentally stupid pissing match, primarily because the statistics regarding this is non-existent and are extremely subjective.

for instance: the battle between oath-keepers vs the Daily Stormers (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2017/06/16/boomer-antifa-white-supremacists-rip-into-paramilitary-oath-keepers-for-not-being-racist-enough), how would this be described?

suffice it to say, stupidity, extremism, and violence are not the monopolies of any political pole. as long as the ideologies themselves do not advocate violence, then let the blame fall on the people inciting or carrying out the violence.

zraver
17 Jun 17,, 23:08
all of this is a fundamentally stupid pissing match, primarily because the statistics regarding this is non-existent and are extremely subjective.

for instance: the battle between oath-keepers vs the Daily Stormers (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2017/06/16/boomer-antifa-white-supremacists-rip-into-paramilitary-oath-keepers-for-not-being-racist-enough), how would this be described?

suffice it to say, stupidity, extremism, and violence are not the monopolies of any political pole. as long as the ideologies themselves do not advocate violence, then let the blame fall on the people inciting or carrying out the violence.

You have elected members of Congress and a former VP candidate openly calling for leftwing violence...

tbm3fan
18 Jun 17,, 00:31
You have elected members of Congress and a former VP candidate openly calling for leftwing violence...

Talk about a fixation... wow

antimony
19 Jun 17,, 03:37
You have elected members of Congress and a former VP candidate openly calling for leftwing violence...

You have elected a President who wants to punch people, boasts that his supporters will spare him if he shoots someone, goads people to violence and says that he would pay their legal fees. You have elected a senator who tweets that guns are for shooting people in the government. You have no ground to stand on

antimony
19 Jun 17,, 03:47
I was always very careful to limit my criticisms to policy in the occupation zone and not of Judaism, Jews, or Israel's right to exists. That is not whats occurring on college campuses.


The stuff in Breitbart and Infowars is far removed whatever either you or leftists in campuses say. They even talk about boycotting Jew owned businesses.



They align Left politically, left and hate are not mutually exclusive.


Any jihadist, by definition is Islamic right wing, as opposed to the Christian right wing that you prefer. The Left shuns both.



Yes they do


Whatever flats your boat man



A point I myself have made elsewhere, but he was left before insane.


The conspiracy theory part if absolute wingnut territory, not left or progressive of any kind. How and why would a progressive oppose women in power? what part of progressive ideology is that.


Incredibly dishonest of you. Severed heads, mock assassinations at Shakespeare in the Park, politicians calling for people to fight in the streets... All recent, yet you want to go back to a campaign closing on a year ago, where a candidate got pissed that lefties were violently crashing his rallies like SA Brownshirts in the 30's.

Is it indeed? the Left and the Center dealt harshly with Griffin, who has herself apologized profusely. Where were the condemnations against Ted Nugent? What was the social boycotting and reprimand that he suffered? People crashing an opposing politician's rally? Yeah, welcome to America.

Also, please explain this:

43938

astralis
19 Jun 17,, 14:42
hboGYT, z,

i am moving the healthcare discussion to the American Political Scene thread.

antimony
19 Jun 17,, 18:56
I was always very careful to limit my criticisms to policy in the occupation zone and not of Judaism, Jews, or Israel's right to exists. That is not whats occurring on college campuses.

Nowhere in the campuses is there a call to be violent against Jews themselves, unlike Brreitbart and Infowars. Please re-educate yourself



They align Left politically, left and hate are not mutually exclusive.


Z, this is insane. A jihadist, by definition, is a virulent right wing extremist. Only, he is Islamic, instead of the Christian right wing we see here



Yes they do
A point I myself have made elsewhere, but he was left before insane.


Again, this is insanity. How can a progressive be against women in power? That goes against the very definition of progressiveness. Also, the conspiracy stuff is pure right wing lunacy.



Incredibly dishonest of you. Severed heads, mock assassinations at Shakespeare in the Park, politicians calling for people to fight in the streets... All recent, yet you want to go back to a campaign closing on a year ago, where a candidate got pissed that lefties were violently crashing his rallies like SA Brownshirts in the 30's.

Is that so? Griffin was torn apart by the liberal as well as mainstream media for what she did. She herself was profoundly apologetic. What happened to Ted Nugent when he said Obama should suck on this machine gun? Why was he not similarly ostracized? Sean Hannity even defiantly said that it was his right to free speech. The hypocrisy on the right is unbelievable. you guys have absolutely no standing on this issue. And btw, lefties violently crashing Trump' parties while he was mouthing himself off? That is a barefaced lie. The Orange himself says in the video that the protester looks to happy and calm, and instead he should be on a stretcher. So the candidate does not like a few protesters? Yeah, welcome to America

43954

Also, please explain this:

43938

Firestorm
19 Jun 17,, 19:37
Any jihadist, by definition is Islamic right wing, as opposed to the Christian right wing that you prefer. The Left shuns both.

Not to detract from your very valid points about rightwing hypocrisy, but the bolded part above isn't strictly true and you know it. Several people on the left itself have called out liberals for defending Islamic extremism out of some misplaced belief that criticism of the religion is tantamount to racism and bigotry.

For an example, read this: I'm a Muslim reformer who is being smeared as an 'anti-Muslim extremist' by angry white liberals (http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/anti-extremism-muslim-far-left-politics-quilliam-social-reform-a7388931.html). I expect you know who Maajid Nawaz is.

I admit this is more prevalent across the pond but US liberals aren't far behind. The SPLC which labelled Nawaz an "anti-muslim extremist" is American.

antimony
19 Jun 17,, 20:43
Not to detract from your very valid points about rightwing hypocrisy, but the bolded part above isn't strictly true and you know it. Several people on the left itself have called out liberals for defending Islamic extremism out of some misplaced belief that criticism of the religion is tantamount to racism and bigotry.

For an example, read this: I'm a Muslim reformer who is being smeared as an 'anti-Muslim extremist' by angry white liberals (http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/anti-extremism-muslim-far-left-politics-quilliam-social-reform-a7388931.html). I expect you know who Maajid Nawaz is.

I admit this is more prevalent across the pond but US liberals aren't far behind. The SPLC which labelled Nawaz an "anti-muslim extremist" is American.

The principle point stands. Part of the left (such as the TYT gang) are misguided that criticism of Islam is "racism", just like you said. However, that is what it is, lack of information and ignorance, as well as some amount of political correctness. They DO NOT support the concepts inherent within radical Islam , which is mistreatment of women, bigotry against non-believers etc. To say otherwise is plainly wrong. This is indeed part of my frustration with the Left. To them sharia is a cute thing that Muslims do, not the virulent and dangerous philosophy is represents.

zraver
20 Jun 17,, 04:12
Nowhere in the campuses is there a call to be violent against Jews themselves, unlike Brreitbart and Infowars. Please re-educate yourself

You should educate yourself... When a jewish Publicant creates a list of 40 major universities with a history of antisemitism. Where BTW it does get violent.

https://www.algemeiner.com/the-40-worst-colleges-for-jewish-students-2016/


Z, this is insane. A jihadist, by definition, is a virulent right wing extremist. Only, he is Islamic, instead of the Christian right wing we see here

I am not talking about salafist. NoI is not salafist, but it does align Left politically. Thier list of demands is all gimmie, gimme gimme welfare....

https://www.noi.org/muslim-program/


Again, this is insanity. How can a progressive be against women in power?

I asked that same question when Sarah Palin and her doctors were raked over the coals, when Invanka gets brutalized in the press, when then cancidate wife now FLOTUS had perfectly legal pictures published with the obvious intent of slut shaming. When HRC refused to answer questions from the woman her husband raped...


That goes against the very definition of progressiveness. Also, the conspiracy stuff is pure right wing lunacy.

No one accuses progressives of ideological purity when it comes to anyone who leaves the assigned reservation.


Is that so? Griffin was torn apart by the liberal as well as mainstream media for what she did. She herself was profoundly apologetic.

Mainstream media soft pedaled it, and her own apology lasted less than a day.


What happened to Ted Nugent when he said Obama should suck on this machine gun? Why was he not similarly ostracized? Sean Hannity even defiantly said that it was his right to free speech.

Was Obama a sitting president or candidate, and the whole went to the trouble of creating a severed head thing..


The hypocrisy on the right is unbelievable. you guys have absolutely no standing on this issue.

Disagree, the Left nominated a slut shaming rapist defender after all.


And btw, lefties violently crashing Trump' parties while he was mouthing himself off? That is a barefaced lie. The Orange himself says in the video that the protester looks to happy and calm, and instead he should be on a stretcher. So the candidate does not like a few protesters? Yeah, welcome to America

Most Trump rallies got crashed, it was a persistent pattern.


Also, please explain this:

Bill Clinton is a rapist... However, one picture vs dozens of rallies disrupted...

On the Rand Paul tweet you keep posting. perchance have you read the Federalist papers discussions on the 2A?

Resisting a tyrannical government, defending self and community against brigands and Indians etc is why the 2A was created. Hunting is not why we have guns.

DOR
20 Jun 17,, 16:51
You should educate yourself... When a jewish Publicant creates a list of 40 major universities with a history of antisemitism. Where BTW it does get violent.


I am not talking about salafist. NoI is not salafist, but it does align Left politically. Thier list of demands is all gimmie, gimme gimme welfare....

https://www.noi.org/muslim-program/


The only thing even remotely "gimme, gimme, gimme welfare" on that site is a demand for equal but separate education.

antimony
21 Jun 17,, 01:42
You should educate yourself... When a jewish Publicant creates a list of 40 major universities with a history of antisemitism. Where BTW it does get violent.

https://www.algemeiner.com/the-40-worst-colleges-for-jewish-students-2016/


Exactly what I thought, anti-Israel s being passed off as anti-semitic. You yourself have said similar or worse. As for the incident with the swastikas, yeah, the Left (whatever that is) does not do that. that is strictly alt-right and Stormfront territory. BTW, I am quite familiar with UW. Pro-Palestine is right, as is Anti-Israel. Anti-semitic, not so much.



I am not talking about salafist. NoI is not salafist, but it does align Left politically. Their list of demands is all gimmie, gimme gimme welfare....

https://www.noi.org/muslim-program/


I have seen that before. It is black nationalism, not Leftist stuff.



I asked that same question when Sarah Palin and her doctors were raked over the coals, when Invanka gets brutalized in the press, when then cancidate wife now FLOTUS had perfectly legal pictures published with the obvious intent of slut shaming. When HRC refused to answer questions from the woman her husband raped...


What BS! Palin was raked over coals for her intellectual inadequacy, not for being a woman. What is more, she displayed a total lack of intellectual curiosity, something that Trump displays too and something which I consider a dealbreaker for any chief executive. What she had, in spades, was self confidence and charishma, which makes her perfect for a reality star



No one accuses progressives of ideological purity when it comes to anyone who leaves the assigned reservation.


Anti-women policies are at the very center of right wing ideology, so your logic does not count.



Mainstream media soft pedaled it, and her own apology lasted less than a day.


No they did not. She was fired and lambasted. What happened to Nugent?



Was Obama a sitting president or candidate, and the whole went to the trouble of creating a severed head thing..


a. Why does it matter? Is threatening to shoot a non-President somehow excusable?
b. He did something similar before 2012

I repeat, the Right celebrated his rantings, the center and left chastised Griffin. That shows the difference.



Disagree, the Left nominated a slut shaming rapist defender after all.

Most Trump rallies got crashed, it was a persistent pattern.

Bill Clinton is a rapist... However, one picture vs dozens of rallies disrupted...


Every political rally in the US gets disrupted. How many times did Obama have to deal with hecklers? He never wanted them bashed. Trump is a bully, as is the right.




On the Rand Paul tweet you keep posting. perchance have you read the Federalist papers discussions on the 2A?

Resisting a tyrannical government, defending self and community against brigands and Indians etc is why the 2A was created. Hunting is not why we have guns.

In other words, it is perfectly ok when the right does it.

zraver
21 Jun 17,, 03:40
Exactly what I thought, anti-Israel s being passed off as anti-semitic. You yourself have said similar or worse. As for the incident with the swastikas, yeah, the Left (whatever that is) does not do that. that is strictly alt-right and Stormfront territory. BTW, I am quite familiar with UW. Pro-Palestine is right, as is Anti-Israel. Anti-semitic, not so much.

Agree to dissagree.


I have seen that before. It is black nationalism, not Leftist stuff.

They are demanding massive cash payments and economic supports, thats welfare.


What BS! Palin was raked over coals for her intellectual inadequacy, not for being a woman. What is more, she displayed a total lack of intellectual curiosity, something that Trump displays too and something which I consider a dealbreaker for any chief executive. What she had, in spades, was self confidence and charishma, which makes her perfect for a reality star

Palin was attacked for being a woman, attacked for being a mother etc etc etc. Even her daughter who was what 12 or 13 at the time got slut shamed by David Letterman.


Anti-women policies are at the very center of right wing ideology, so your logic does not count.

Pro-life is not anti-woman, anti-tax is not antiwoman, pro-2A is nit anti-woman, trying to keep OBamacare from collapsing the healthcare sector is not anti-woman, encouraging self reliance and personal responsability is not anti-woman. You know what is anti-woman? Opposition to marriage, welfare, illegal immigration, federal control of education, support for abortion...




No they did not. She was fired and lambasted. What happened to Nugent?

She retracted it the very next day and started waving the victim card. She started crying, "he (Trump) broke me". No he didn't, he had nothing to do with your decsion to go beyond the pale.


a. Why does it matter? Is threatening to shoot a non-President somehow excusable?

Excuse no, but it is a different set of laws. BTW what Nugent said was crude, it was not a threat and did not portray an act of violence..



[/quote]I repeat, the Right celebrated his rantings, the center and left chastised Griffin. That shows the difference.[/quote]

Shakespeare in the Park enacting an assassination, Whoopi Goldberg wearing a T-shirt showing Trump getting his brains blown out, former VP candidate calling for street fights, former presidential campaign volunteer attacking a GOP gathering with a rifle to which the Left promptly engaged in victim blaiming....


Every political rally in the US gets disrupted. How many times did Obama have to deal with hecklers? He never wanted them bashed. Trump is a bully, as is the right.

Do you not see the difference between hecklers and the antifa mobs?



In other words, it is perfectly ok when the right does it.

No, it means he read the Federalist papers and has a reasoned, constitutionally sound interpretation supported by evidence. He might still be wrong, but at least his position is reasoned, researched and supported.

zraver
21 Jun 17,, 03:41
The only thing even remotely "gimme, gimme, gimme welfare" on that site is a demand for equal but separate education.

25 years of economic payments and a huge amount of arable, minerally rich land plus relocation costs....

DOR
21 Jun 17,, 20:05
25 years of economic payments and a huge amount of arable, minerally rich land plus relocation costs....

You posted the link.
Now, you show us where that statement is backed up by your link.

I double-dare you!

antimony
22 Jun 17,, 03:01
They are demanding massive cash payments and economic supports, thats welfare.


On the basis of race, not class



Palin was attacked for being a woman, attacked for being a mother etc etc etc. Even her daughter who was what 12 or 13 at the time got slut shamed by David Letterman.


Again, the attack on Palin was because of her innate stupidity, not her gender. Conservatives question the very fact that women can be leaders.



Pro-life is not anti-woman, anti-tax is not antiwoman, pro-2A is nit anti-woman, trying to keep OBamacare from collapsing the healthcare sector is not anti-woman, encouraging self reliance and personal responsability is not anti-woman. You know what is anti-woman? Opposition to marriage, welfare, illegal immigration, federal control of education, support for abortion...


Pro-life is anti woman to the core, so is unequal pay, taking away access to birth control, planned parenthood defunding. Tax and 2A are neither here nor there.



She retracted it the very next day and started waving the victim card. She started crying, "he (Trump) broke me". No he didn't, he had nothing to do with your decsion to go beyond the pale.


What did Ted Nugent do?



Excuse no, but it is a different set of laws. BTW what Nugent said was crude, it was not a threat and did not portray an act of violence..


"suck on my machinegun", yeah not violence.



Shakespeare in the Park enacting an assassination, Whoopi Goldberg wearing a T-shirt showing Trump getting his brains blown out, former VP candidate calling for street fights, former presidential campaign volunteer attacking a GOP gathering with a rifle to which the Left promptly engaged in victim blaiming....

Do you not see the difference between hecklers and the antifa mobs?


Not when your President wants people to be violent and wants to pay their fees or wants hecklers to be put on stretchers. Scalese is a Trump supporter, therefore he stands for the same.



No, it means he read the Federalist papers and has a reasoned, constitutionally sound interpretation supported by evidence. He might still be wrong, but at least his position is reasoned, researched and supported.

You can argue the nuances but it is what it is, shoot those in power when you feel you are under tyranny. Paul equated tyranny with Obama, same as what many on the left might feel now

astralis
23 Jun 17,, 17:48
WaPo came out today with a pretty huge investigation into the various Russian actions.

Obama’s secret struggle to punish Russia for Putin’s election assault (https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2017/world/national-security/obama-putin-election-hacking)

big takeaways (although it is WELL worth reading in full):

- CIA had sourcing from within the Russian government that detailed Putin's direct involvement in the US election, to include his specific instructions that the objective was to defeat/hurt HRC and support Trump.
- In typical Obama Administration fashion, the administration took a looong time to deliberate on a response, tried to get bipartisan support for concerted action, failed, and went for the least punitive response of kicking out some spies/symbolic sanctions
- Obama directed the intel community to create cyber weapons in Russian infrastructure, to be used if there was an escalating exchange with Moscow or if Moscow attempted to interfere again

Wooglin
23 Jun 17,, 19:28
When will people learn?

43983

troung
23 Jun 17,, 20:13
Great non-story, really put a lot of effort (better part of an hour) into the art work.

At that point, the outlines of the Russian assault on the U.S. election were increasingly apparent. Hackers with ties to Russian intelligence services had been rummaging through Democratic Party computer networks, as well as some Republican systems, for more than a year. In July, the FBI had opened an investigation of contacts between Russian officials and Trump associates. And on July 22, nearly 20,000 emails stolen from the Democratic National Committee were dumped online by WikiLeaks.

So WAPO what did the emails say?


ver that five-month interval, the Obama administration secretly debated dozens of options for deterring or punishing Russia, including cyberattacks on Russian infrastructure, the release of CIA-gathered material that might embarrass Putin and sanctions that officials said could “crater” the Russian economy.

Mrs. Hillary's war?


Obama also approved a previously undisclosed covert measure that authorized planting cyber weapons in Russia’s infrastructure, the digital equivalent of bombs that could be detonated if the United States found itself in an escalating exchange with Moscow. The project, which Obama approved in a covert-action finding, was still in its planning stages when Obama left office. It would be up to President Trump to decide whether to use the capability.

Thanks secret services for leaking this....


They believe that a series of warnings — including one that Obama delivered to Putin in September — prompted Moscow to abandon any plans of further aggression, such as sabotage of U.S. voting systems

So Russia didn't hack the election?


We set out from a first-order principle that required us to defend the integrity of the vote,” McDonough said in an interview. “Importantly, we did that. It’s also important to establish what happened and what they attempted to do so as to ensure that we take the steps necessary to stop it from happening again.”

So the vote was fair?

Cooky old lady couldn't be bothered to campaign?


“The punishment did not fit the crime,” said Michael McFaul, who served as U.S. ambassador to Russia for the Obama administration from 2012 to 2014. “Russia violated our sovereignty, meddling in one of our most sacred acts as a democracy — electing our president. The Kremlin should have paid a much higher price for that attack. And U.S. policymakers now — both in the White House and Congress — should consider new actions to deter future Russian interventions.”

Not a very good one, clearly.


The CIA breakthrough came at a stage of the presidential campaign when Trump had secured the GOP nomination but was still regarded as a distant long shot. Clinton held comfortable leads in major polls, and Obama expected that he would be transferring power to someone who had served in his Cabinet

LMAO!


For spy agencies, gaining insights into the intentions of foreign leaders is among the highest priorities. But Putin is a remarkably elusive target. A former KGB officer, he takes extreme precautions to guard against surveillance, rarely communicating by phone or computer, always running sensitive state business from deep within the confines of the Kremlin.

Cold war era charlatans back at work.


A week later, in one of Obama’s final news briefings, he expressed irritation that such a consequential election “came to be dominated by a bunch of these leaks.” He scolded news organizations for an “obsession” with titillating material about the Democrats that had dominated coverage.

Then he unloaded on Moscow. “The Russians can’t change us or significantly weaken us,” he said. “They are a smaller country. They are a weaker country. Their economy doesn’t produce anything that anybody wants to buy, except oil and gas and arms.”


To quote Killa Cam "you mad."

PeeCoffee
24 Jun 17,, 10:50
Thanks Troung for that last tag to Cam'ron's Killer Cam cuz "This is the realist since kumbaya".

JAD_333
25 Jun 17,, 01:31
Obama also approved a previously undisclosed covert measure that authorized planting cyber weapons in Russia’s infrastructure, the digital equivalent of bombs that could be detonated if the United States found itself in an escalating exchange with Moscow. The project, which Obama approved in a covert-action finding, was still in its planning stages when Obama left office. It would be up to President Trump to decide whether to use the capability.

Thanks secret services for leaking this....

My first reaction as well. But it also could be a message or a warning.

Wooglin
26 Jun 17,, 15:22
Ah, some perspective.


Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley's accusation that Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer lied about President Trump and the Russia investigation — that Schumer said the president was under investigation after he, Schumer, had been specifically told by the FBI that Trump was not — is shedding new light on the events that led to the president's rising frustration over the Russia probe, the FBI, and Democrats who sought to make political hay out of Trump's troubles.

Start in January. As Inauguration Day approached, the Trump-Russia affair dominated media talk. The central question, then as now, was whether Trump or his associates colluded with the Russians to try to influence the 2016 election. And the root of the president's frustration was the same: he had been assured, by the highest levels of law enforcement, that he was not under investigation, while at the same time the impression grew — fed by officials who knew otherwise — that he was under investigation.

On Jan. 6, when Trump was president-elect, FBI Director James Comey met with him to tell him about the so-called Russia dossier, which, among other things, described alleged Trump sexual encounters in a Moscow hotel. (Comey later called the dossier "unverified.") Comey later noted that Trump did not ask whether he, Trump, was being investigated personally, but that Comey, on his own initiative, "offered that assurance."

On Jan. 27, Comey again told the president that he was not under investigation.

Fast forward to March. The Russia controversy had grown, not diminished. On March 9, Comey briefed the so-called Gang of Eight — Mitch McConnell, Schumer, Paul Ryan and Nancy Pelosi, plus the chair and ranking member of both House and Senate intelligence committees. On March 15, Comey briefed Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Grassley and top committee Democrat Dianne Feinstein. Comey told them all that Trump was not under investigation.

So by March 15, all of the top leadership of Congress and the relevant committees had heard from the FBI director himself that Trump was not under FBI investigation.

On March 20, Comey made a bombshell announcement before the House Intelligence Committee:

I have been authorized by the Department of Justice to confirm that the FBI, as part of our counterintelligence mission, is investigating the Russian government's efforts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election and that includes investigating the nature of any links between individuals associated with the Trump campaign and the Russian government and whether there was any coordination between the campaign and Russia's efforts. As with any counterintelligence investigation, this will also include an assessment of whether any crimes were committed.

When a Democratic member of the committee asked Comey, "Was Donald Trump under investigation during the campaign?" Comey replied, "I'm not going to answer that." When the same member asked, "Is [Trump] under investigation now?" Comey said, "I'm not going to answer that."

Given all the breathless reporting of the previous months, a listener might reasonably infer that Trump was under investigation — a contention the leaders of Congress knew at the time to be false.

Some were upset at the impression Comey left. The same day Comey testified, March 20, Grassley tweeted, "FBI Dir Comey needs to be transparent + tell the public what he told me about whether he is or is not investigating @POTUS." And what Comey told Grassley, of course, was that Trump was not under investigation.

But then the next day, March 21, Schumer, who had been briefed by Comey on March 9 that the president was not under investigation, took to the floor of the Senate. He called on lawmakers to delay the confirmation of Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch until the Russia matter was resolved. Republicans held up former President Barack Obama's court choice for nearly a year, Schumer said, but "are now rushing to fill the seat for a president whose campaign is under investigation by the FBI."

Schumer appeared to be speaking carefully; he said Trump's campaign was under investigation. But then he became much less careful with his words. "You can bet if the shoe were on the other foot and a Democratic president was under investigation by the FBI, the Republicans would be howling at the moon about filling a Supreme Court seat in such circumstances," Schumer said.

"After all, they stopped the president who was not under investigation from filling a set with nearly a year left in his presidency," Schumer continued. "It is unseemly to be moving forward so fast on confirming a Supreme Court Justice with a lifetime appointment while this 'big gray cloud' of an FBI investigation hangs over the presidency."

Schumer's point was entirely clear: President Trump was under investigation. Of course, Comey told Schumer less than two weeks earlier that was not the case.

On March 30, Comey had another conversation with Trump in which, for a third time, he told Trump that Trump was not under FBI investigation. In the same conversation, as later described by Comey to the Senate, Comey told Trump that he had "briefed the leadership of Congress on exactly which individuals we were investigating and that we had told those congressional leaders that we were not personally investigating President Trump."

So by March 30, Trump knew that Comey had 1) told the president he was not under investigation; 2) told the House and Senate leadership that the president was not under investigation; and 3) told the president that he had told the House and Senate leadership that the president was not under investigation.

The only people who hadn't gotten the message were the American people. No one knew that better than Trump, who, by Comey's account, told Comey repeatedly, "We need to get that fact out."

But the fact did not get out. Instead, things got worse.

On May 3, Comey testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee, where Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal went perhaps further than other Democrats in trying to push the idea that the president was under investigation.

"You have confirmed, I believe, that the FBI is investigating potential ties between Trump associates and the Russian interference in the 2016 campaign, correct?" Blumenthal asked the director.

"Yes," said Comey.

"And have not, to my knowledge, ruled out anyone in the Trump campaign as potentially a target of that criminal investigation, correct?"

"Well, I haven't said anything publicly about who we've opened investigations on," replied Comey. "I briefed the chair and ranking on who those people are. And so I can't — I can't go beyond that in this setting."

"Have you ruled out anyone in the campaign that you can disclose?"

"I don't feel comfortable answering that, senator because I think it puts me on a slope to talking about who we're investigating," replied Comey.

"Have you — have you ruled out the president of the United States?"

"I don't — I don't want people to over-interpret this answer," said Comey. "I'm not going to comment on anyone in particular, because that puts me down a slope of — because if I say no to that, then I have to answer succeeding questions. So what we've done is brief the chair and ranking on who the U.S. persons are that we've opened investigations on. And that's — that's as far as we're going to go, at this point."

"But as a former prosecutor, you know that when there's an investigation into several potentially culpable individuals, the evidence from those individuals and the investigation can lead to others, correct?"

"Correct," said Comey. "We're always open-minded about — and we follow the evidence wherever it takes us."

"So potentially," Blumenthal continued, "the president of the United States could be a target of your ongoing investigation into the Trump campaign's involvement with Russian interference in our election, correct?"

"I just worry — I don't want to answer that — that seems to be unfair speculation," said Comey. "We will follow the evidence, we'll try and find as much as we can and we'll follow the evidence wherever it leads."

Given everything else that has been said about the Russia matter, would a reasonable listener come away with the impression that the president was under investigation? Probably so. And just for emphasis, the next day Blumenthal appeared on the cable news program Trump loves to hate, "Morning Joe," to press his case.

A few days later, on May 9, Trump, frustrated with the two-faced nature of the investigation, fired Comey. In his firing letter, Trump said that Comey had assured him on three separate occasions that he, Trump, was not under investigation — an assertion met with great skepticism in the reporting of the firing.

Two days later, on May 11, the Senate Judiciary Committee held a business meeting. At that meeting a clearly unhappy Grassley discussed the question of whether Trump was under FBI investigation. Remember, at that time, the public did not know the truth. But Grassley did.

"Mr. Comey testified before the Judiciary Committee last week," Grassley began. "Sen. Blumenthal asked him whether the FBI had ruled anyone out as a potential target of the investigation of allegations of collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians. In response, Mr. Comey stated: 'Well, I haven't said anything publicly about who we've opened investigations on. I briefed the chair and ranking on who those people are.'"

"Mr. Comey did brief Ranking Member Feinstein and me on who the targets of the various investigations are," Grassley continued:

It would not be appropriate for me to reveal those details before the professionals conducting the investigations are ready. So I will not answer any questions about who are targets of the ongoing Russia investigations. But I will say this: Shortly after Director Comey briefed us, I tweeted that he should be transparent. I said he should tell the public what he told Senator Feinstein and me about whether the FBI is or is not investigating the president. On Tuesday, the president's letter said that Director Comey told him he was not under investigation. Senator Feinstein and I heard nothing that contradicted the president's statement.

Feinstein agreed that what Grassley had said was "accurate."

Neither Grassley nor Feinstein, bound by the restriction that the briefing from Comey was secret, could come out and say that Comey had told them Trump was not under investigation. So they danced around the topic.

That was May 11. It wasn't until June 8, when Comey, by that time a private citizen, testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee that he admitted Trump was never under investigation — and that, just as Trump said, Comey had assured the president three times that he wasn't under investigation.

Comey's admission seemed to make Grassley more frustrated. For all those weeks and months, while speculation about a Trump investigation raged in the press, Comey knew the truth, and told top members of Congress the truth, and yet in public, a misimpression was allowed to grow.

And so last Wednesday, Grassley took to the Senate floor to address the issue again. His target was Comey, but also Schumer. Back in March, the minority leader knew the truth — he had been told by the director of the FBI himself — but fed the fire by publicly saying Trump was under investigation. Grassley denounced "media hysteria" set off by remarks like Schumer's.

"I have to note something else here," Grassley said:

Mr. Comey didn't just tell the president, Sen. Feinstein, and me that the president was not under investigation. He also had told the Gang of Eight. Of course, the Gang of Eight includes the Senate Minority Leader, Sen. Schumer. But even after Mr. Comey told the Gang of Eight that the president was not under investigation, the minority leader told the media he was. That helped feed the media hysteria. The minority leader even tried to say that the Senate shouldn't vote on the Supreme Court nomination because the president was under investigation. And the whole time, he knew it wasn't true.

Those were pretty strong words between senators.

Now, Grassley said, there is still baseless speculation about the Russia case. Grassley called for it to stop. Of course, it won't. But even if it somehow did stop, a lot of damage has already been done.

Double Edge
02 Jul 17,, 03:56
so basically after failing miserably with the "russian collusion" BS, the left now turn the another conspiracy called "justice obstruction". jeez, and we have to endure this BS for another half year?
lol yep. But another half year is optimistic, special counsels take years. So people can still hope for an impeachment. Tough business that, Clinton only got impeached by the house. Didn't get past the senate and completed his term. So lets make every day this administration is in office hell. They have to run the country, still fill vacancies, deal with contingencies and keep an eye on the rear mirror.

astralis
11 Jul 17,, 16:23
https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/7/11/15950664/trump-jr-russia-meeting-clinton

We are past the point of innocent explanations on Trump and Russia

Imagine if the Clintons had done what the Trumps did on Russia.

Updated by Ezra Klein@ezraklein Jul 11, 2017, 9:00am EDT

Imagine the names were different.

Imagine Chelsea Clinton had taken Bill Clinton and campaign chair John Podesta to a meeting set up by a Chinese government intermediary who claimed to have damaging information about Donald Trump’s tax returns and said over email they were willing to share the information in a bid to defeat Trump.

Imagine this information came out mere weeks after stories revealing a major Democratic funder, acting on the behest of prospective National Security Adviser Susan Rice, had been trying to work with Chinese hackers to steal copies of Trump’s tax returns.

Imagine, during all of this, that Hillary Clinton herself had gotten on a stage and begged the Chinese government to release Trump’s tax returns. “China, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the tax returns,” Clinton said in Florida. “I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press.”

Imagine that these stories were not isolated. They came alongside dozens of strange meetings between Clinton campaign aides and Chinese staffers — contacts left off security clearance forms and “forgotten” during sworn congressional testimony — and were buttressed by Clinton herself lurching toward a strangely pro-China policy and an unusual, and repeatedly articulated, affection for China’s leader.

And imagine that, in a crucial stretch of the campaign, hackers backed by the Chinese government really did break into the Trump family’s systems and release a bevy of damaging financial documents in a successful effort to elect Clinton.

To simply write this story out is to strain credulity. It reads like a bad spy novel or a fevered conspiracy. Can you imagine what Fox News would be saying? What Rush Limbaugh would be saying? How deafening the calls for impeachment and investigation would be?

But this is where we are. The best defense of Trump’s associates, at this point, is they were too dumb to know what they’re doing — a defense that doesn’t work when it includes experienced international operators like campaign manager Paul Manafort and ex-Defense Intelligence Agency Director Michael Flynn. Donald Trump Jr.’s own defense of himself is that he attempted to collude with Russian agents but they didn’t have any useful information and so he didn’t. This is, as my colleague Zack Beauchamp notes, no defense at all — even if it is true, Trump Jr. may well have committed a crime.

What’s more, we know for a fact that the Russian hacking of Democratic files happened, that it was successful, and that Trump has stubbornly resisted efforts to admit or investigate Russia’s intervention into the campaign while repeatedly praising Putin. We also know Trump has, since taking office, undermined the NATO alliance while cozying up to Vladimir Putin — the two of them joked about their shared dislike for the American media at the G20 last week and pledged to work together on cybersecurity.

This isn’t just smoke. We can see the damage done by the fire. We are watching our president pal around with the suspected arsonists. And so we are past the point where innocent explanations on Trump and Russia remain credible. Consider the context of Trump Jr.’s meeting:

The most important fact about Trump Jr.’s meeting is that Manafort and Kushner were there. Absent their involvement, this may have just been Trump Jr. entertaining himself. But Manafort and Kushner were Trump’s campaign manager and key consigliere, respectively. They were busy. They didn’t take meetings without knowing what they were about. Their presence suggests the Trump campaign was keenly interested in this kind of collusion, though we don’t yet know whether it actually happened.

It was only days after Trump Jr.’s meeting that Trump himself publicly asked Russian hackers to find and release Clinton’s missing emails. Under criticism, Trump played the comments off as a joke, but it seems plausible that there was a theory floating around the campaign that Russian hackers had breached Clinton’s files and could reveal information that would devastate her campaign.

Currently, the White House is saying Trump only learned of his son’s meeting in the past few days. So the going defense of the president is this: His son, his son-in-law, and his campaign manager met with Russian operatives to try to obtain dirt on Clinton — potentially both committing a crime and giving the Russians leverage over the candidate — and no one bothered to ask Trump whether this was a good idea. As with many of Trumpworld’s excuses, it’s hard to know if it’s more damning if it’s true or if it’s false.

Remember that all this took place in June 2016 when Trump was considered a serious underdog to win the race. The risk of colluding with a foreign power — if that risk was even understood and appreciated by Trump’s team — might well have seemed worth it to have a chance at winning the election. A gamble that looks insane in retrospect might have looked reasonable at the time, particularly if its consequences weren’t fully understood or expected.

It is always worth asking how people involved in clear wrongdoing might have seemed like the hero of the story to themselves. Trump and his family bought into the most fevered conspiracies about the emails Clinton withheld from the State Department as personal, and they likely believed that there was information crucial to American interests lurking in those documents. If they had obtained the emails and proven Clinton dangerously unfit to lead, or revealed that foreign powers had more information or leverage over American policymaking than we knew, they would have done the country a great service, or at least it’s easy to believe how they would see it that way. Recall former CIA Director John Brennan’s comment: "Frequently individuals who go along a treasonous path do not even realize they are on that path until it gets to be a bit too late.”

“If The New York Times knows all this, imagine what Bob Mueller knows,” writes Axios’s Mike Allen. It is, for the Trump administration, a scary thought. But also remember: Obstruction of justice is a strange and somewhat vague crime that relies heavily on intent to undermine an investigation. Trump’s intent looks quite different if it turns out he was trying to protect his beloved son and son-in-law from investigation than if he was just annoyed by James Comey’s reticence.

How hard is Vladimir Putin laughing at us right now? One theory of Russia’s involvement in the election is they never expected to elect Trump — they just wanted to sow doubt in America’s institutions and its leaders. Look how easily and wildly they succeeded.

snapper
11 Jul 17,, 18:38
To make matters worse the son, who appears to as stupid as his Father, has just released (on twitter naturally) the conversations he had with Goldstone, the promoter who set up his/Manafort/Kushner's meeting with this Muscovite Lady lawyers. This makes it clear that the information this Lady (Natalia Veselnitskaya) has on Mrs Clinton originates from the Muscovite Government; she is described as a "Government attorney". The son of course is - in theory - a private citizen (or is supposed to be) but when he attends a meeting offering such information from a foreign power two of the top people employed in the Trump campaign it is clear they were attempting at least to "collude" and that is treason.

Nor can I honestly believe that the son 'forgot' this, that the elder idiot only heard a couple of days ago or that the meeting was 'adoption'. Putin banned US citizens from adopting Muscovite orphans in retaliation for the Magnitsy Act - which this Natalyia Lady had been actively trying to get rid of for some time so the deal was - repeal the Magnitsy act (or perhaps other sanctions would do) and we let you have the dirt on your opponents campaign - which they did.

zraver
12 Jul 17,, 03:16
https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/7/11/15950664/trump-jr-russia-meeting-clinton

We are past the point of innocent explanations on Trump and Russia

Imagine if the Clintons had done what the Trumps did on Russia.

You mean like they did with Ukraine? That wasn't sitting in on a meeting, it was actual campaign impact collusion. Then of course there is the half million dollar speech in Moscow, Podestas links and investments to a Russian bank, Obama's sidebar hot mike message to Putin via Medvev....

snapper
12 Jul 17,, 09:39
You mean like they did with Ukraine? That wasn't sitting in on a meeting, it was actual campaign impact collusion.

The only information relevant to the US election that came from Ukraine was about Manafort the payments to whom were being investigated in Ukraine before he joined the Trump campaign. There were articles that appeared in the Ukrainian press detailing the investigations into the Yanukovych Government in which Manafort was mentioned before he became important in US political terms. Presumably some Democrat researcher looking into Manafort's Ukrainian (and Muscovite) connections came across these rather obscure mentions of investigations - mostly into Yanukovych's corruption - in Ukraine. Ukraine did not approach the Democratic Party and offer information and no person (or supposed "Government attorney") was sent to get a deal in return 'dirt' on Manafort as Ukraine is not under US sanctions so does not have the same incentive. As far as I it (though of course I was not there) understand staff at the Embassy merely confirmed the information when asked regarding Manafort that had already been put in the public sphere. It was basically confirming that Manafort's name had come up during the Yanukovych investigations. Not entirely the same...

surfgun
12 Jul 17,, 14:45
And how much uranium was sold to Russia by someone not named Trump?

The former Director is in legal peril for his ill advised leaking.

bfng3569
12 Jul 17,, 15:54
https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/7/11/15950664/trump-jr-russia-meeting-clinton



How hard is Vladimir Putin laughing at us right now? One theory of Russia’s involvement in the election is they never expected to elect Trump — they just wanted to sow doubt in America’s institutions and its leaders. Look how easily and wildly they succeeded.

this last paragraph to me is the most telling of how dysfunctional and partisan politics have become, particularly from the left.

Does anyone here not picture Putin and his cronies sipping some vodka and laughing their collective ass's off when they sit there and watch CNN or MSNBC or the like? I mean it has to be like the comedy channel for them.

the dem's and the main stream media have done more to damage the political process and to undermine faith in our government and our elections than Putin could ever have dreamed possible while at the same time elevating the perception of Moscow's ability to interfere, interject and influence the West to mythical like status.

Repub's under Obama may have been horribly inept and childish with their blatant attempt to obstruct his polices, but Dems take it to a entirely new level with their blatant attempts to take down Trump, both domestically and globally.

They aren't just obstructing his policies, they are trying to destroy his presidency. And as much as they think their attempt to do so is just about Trump, it has much broader effect and meaning.

let this sink in: They aren't just trying to destroy his policies or him personally, they are trying to destroy a presidency.

They are trying, in effect, a coup.

And the main stream media is actively participating.

People can hate on Trump all they want, his lack of tact, his twitter feed, what ever.

But what the Dem's and the left are doing to this country, and the precedent they are setting, is far far worse than anything Trump could do.

astralis
12 Jul 17,, 15:54
surfgun,


And how much uranium was sold to Russia by someone not named Trump?

http://www.snopes.com/hillary-clinton-uranium-russia-deal/


The former Director is in legal peril for his ill advised leaking.

no he's not, otherwise there would have been a case against it already.

anyhow, back to the Trump Jr e-mails: whatever happens, this will be all great grind for the Mueller investigation. especially now that Jr has said that now that he thinks reallll hard about it, he might have met with other Russians too, lol.

astralis
12 Jul 17,, 15:57
bfng,


They aren't just obstructing his policies, they are trying to destroy his presidency.

lol, you mean by pointing out all the various doings the Trump campaign had with the Russians? pro-tip: if the campaign didn't want the media to look into its connections with the Russians, then maybe they shouldn't have hired people with connections to the Russians.

and btw, i'm curious as to how Dems are 'obstructing his policies' when REPUBLICANS CONTROL CONGRESS.

tbm3fan
12 Jul 17,, 18:10
They aren't just obstructing his policies, they are trying to destroy his presidency.




Wasn't that a Steven Colbert line? Funny as hell about the world's biggest bag of old hot air the last 40 years.

snapper
12 Jul 17,, 18:21
the dem's and the main stream media have done more to damage the political process and to undermine faith in our government and our elections than Putin could ever have dreamed possible while at the same time elevating the perception of Moscow's ability to interfere, interject and influence the West to mythical like status.

No Moscow planned to engineer this - precisely this; a dunce President with no idea of foreign affairs or intelligence operations in their pocket if need be. The fool never understood their games from the start and by the time he did it was too late. He is compromised goods and if he was not actively colluding he would have the honour to resign.

My guess was that this Veselnitskaya outreach was perhaps a 'test' to see if the Trump campaign would bite. When they did others contacts and agreements were made; thus the other meetings and the start of the 'reveals' of the hacked DNC emails the next month. By the time the Trump lot realised what they got themselves into it was too late; thus all the denials - which are now worthless. He is compromised even if he did not willing collude with a hostile power which aims the largest nuclear arsenal in the world at you. Best bet is to get rid of the lot asap.

zraver
12 Jul 17,, 18:44
surfgun,



http://www.snopes.com/hillary-clinton-uranium-russia-deal/



no he's not, otherwise there would have been a case against it already.

anyhow, back to the Trump Jr e-mails: whatever happens, this will be all great grind for the Mueller investigation. especially now that Jr has said that now that he thinks reallll hard about it, he might have met with other Russians too, lol.


Having a meeting, even receiving information pro bono is legal the source doesnt matter. The only ones working with forgien governments to affect a US election were the Dems.

astralis
12 Jul 17,, 20:29
z,


Having a meeting, even receiving information pro bono is legal the source doesnt matter.

sure...we'll see if the FBI agrees with this assessment or not. they're not running an investigation into the HRC campaign and the Ukrainians or whatever Hannity is spewing now. my guess is that what Trump Jr did would be a violation of campaign finance law (https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/11/110.20), but by itself would not be enough to justify arrest/jail time.

in any case, considering how the Trump campaign has always disavowed any connection with Russia, it's sort of hard to believe this statement now considering Jr's response to an e-mail regarding a Russian purporting to have derogatory HRC information sourced from the Russian government. as i said, all grist for the Mueller investigation to dig deeper and tie things together.

consider Kushner's attempt to set up back-channel communications with Russia.

consider Manafort's connections with Russia.

consider Mike Flynn's lying about contacts with Russia.

even ..stranger... is why none of them came forward to actively volunteer this information, if all of this was so innocent. each time it's dug up, we go through a round of denials and excuses before said person admitted to what they did. oh, Jr was there to collect Russian information regarding the HRC campaign and NOT talk about adoption like he originally said? i'm shocked, shocked i tell you.

snapper
12 Jul 17,, 21:07
Some background on all the people involved in this smaller Trump email...

Aras Agalarov (son Emin) is Azerbaijanian born (moved to Moscow in the mid 1990s or thereabouts) developer and oligarch (worth about $1.5bn). His company is called Crocus International and he knows Trump (and his family) because he was part of the Moscow side on the hosting of the 2013 "Miss Universe" competition - which was actually held at Crocus Hall in Moscow. That year Putin also awarded him the Order of Honour (before the "Miss Universe" show I seem to recall). After that Trump wanted to have a 'Trump tower' in Moscow and Agalarov was involved in these plans until they fell through - some say because sanctions were imposed in 2014. Basically he gets Government contracts - or obtains permission (which amounts to the same process) to do developments such as the Far Eastern (Vladivostok) University campus or develop shopping malls in Moscow and this of course relies on having 'friends and influence' within the ruling kleptocracy who expect 'reciprocity' if nothing else.
His son, Emin, is essentially a rich mans son. On paper he is a deputy Director of Crocus but he wants to be pop star. He was educated in the West (the US). He performed one of his songs at the "Miss Universe" do in 2013 after which Trump (apparently) did some cameo in one of his pop videos. His publicist (for his pop career) is this Goldstone chap who wrote to the smaller Trump. Additionally Emin was married to Leyla Aliyeva, the oldest daughter of the Azerbaijanian dictator/President (since 2003) Ilham Aliyev. Leyla is said to have substantial real estate investments in Dubai that her Father in law payed for and though Emin and Layla were divorced in 2014/15 the Agalarov - Aliyev financial relationship still continues. Obviously the Agalarov connection in Moscow is useful to the Aliyev clan ruling in Baku and they have alot of oil and gas money to spend.

Natalia Veselnitskaya claims to represent, among others, some organisation called the "Human Rights Accountability Global Initiative Foundation", a US registered NGO. She claims to have done "an extensive investigation of the [Sergei] Magnitsky case", the lawyer who died in prison and who the Muscovite authorities put on trial and found guilty of money laundering AFTER his death. This all goes back to the Bill Browder business and is a long story in all; read Browder's book 'Red Notice' if you want the full details but basically this involves the theft of $230m from Muscovite tax revenue - which Browder's company Hermitage was then charged with tax evasion; Magnitsy was a lawyer hired by Browder to find out where the money went. So in 2012 the Magnitsy Act passed in the US which effectively sanctions those involved in the death of Magnitsy. In retaliation Moscow refused to alow US couples to adopt Muscovite children. She basically works for a guy called Petr Katsyv (a former vice president of Russian Railways and deputy Governor of Moscow) and his son Denis Katsyv who owns a Cyprus registered investment company called Prevezon Holdings. In 2013 'Preet' Bharara, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, froze $24m worth of Prevezon assets and alleged that some of the real estate purchases in which Prevezon had been involved involved the missing tax money which had been effectively stolen (Browder alleges) from the Muscovite treasury. Veselnitskaya was one of the lawyers acting for the defence. The case was settled on May 13th this year with Prevezon agreeing to pay $6m, two days after 'Preet' Bahara was dismissed from his post.

So the fallout and other questions... Well Trumps (the older) comments about his sons 'transparency' are clearly BS. The NYT phoned the son, told him they had the email record and asked for his comment so he shot himself rather than be shot. It is also now abundantly clear that all "no connections/no collusion", "I don't know anyone in 'Russia'", "no contacts" and all the rest of the denials was lies. Nothing can be believed - not even the younger Trump's first attempt to explain this meeting "it was about adoption"... where is adoption mentioned in the emails? Presumably he must have known of the Muscovite act of retaliation after the Magnitsy Act to connect these requests for a meeting to adoption and in that case he must have had some idea of who he was to meet. It is more likely he got some background on Veselnitskaya/Magnitsy and the Prevezon case AFTER the meeting and then linked the adoption retaliation as an excuse for the meeting. There can be little doubt that Veselnitskaya was pushing for the settlement of the Prevezon case and the withdrawal of the Magnitsy law at the very least. Did she think she could get something for nothing? She must have had something to reciprocate with. The 'wikileaks' dumps started the next month (July). Why did Kushner later ask for a secret channel to Moscow? In the emails Goldstone says that Muscovite Government is backing Trump; "This is obviously very high level and sensitive information but is part of Russia and its government's support for Mr Trump". Was this "news"? He appears to react as if not... if it was not a new revelation how did the Trump campaign know earlier? If it was a new revelation would the son (and son in law and campaign manager Manafort) really not have mentioned it to the candidate? The sons denial of his Father's knowledge is worthless - he has lied enough already about this one meeting. The final question of course is who is leaking? Maybe the Whitehouse staff? Goldstone perhaps? Certainly none of the accounts match... or Moscow?

bfng3569
12 Jul 17,, 23:23
bfng,



lol, you mean by pointing out all the various doings the Trump campaign had with the Russians? pro-tip: if the campaign didn't want the media to look into its connections with the Russians, then maybe they shouldn't have hired people with connections to the Russians.

and btw, i'm curious as to how Dems are 'obstructing his policies' when REPUBLICANS CONTROL CONGRESS.

Dems have congress tied up with how many investigations?

Dems pushed off confirmation hearings on how many people for how long for all sorts of positions?

the list goes on but is fairly irrelevant to larger point.

and you seem like a smart guy, are you saying that's all that's been going on?

They are just pointing out things, right?

nothing beyond the normal level of political discourse and bickering?

Same with the main stream and leftist media?

bfng3569
12 Jul 17,, 23:26
No Moscow planned to engineer this - precisely this; a dunce President with no idea of foreign affairs or intelligence operations in their pocket if need be. The fool never understood their games from the start and by the time he did it was too late. He is compromised goods and if he was not actively colluding he would have the honour to resign.

My guess was that this Veselnitskaya outreach was perhaps a 'test' to see if the Trump campaign would bite. When they did others contacts and agreements were made; thus the other meetings and the start of the 'reveals' of the hacked DNC emails the next month. By the time the Trump lot realised what they got themselves into it was too late; thus all the denials - which are now worthless. He is compromised even if he did not willing collude with a hostile power which aims the largest nuclear arsenal in the world at you. Best bet is to get rid of the lot asap.

more tin foil hat conspiracy crap.

JAD_333
12 Jul 17,, 23:50
There's no question that Trump Jr. tried to fuzz the purpose of the meeting with Veselnitskaya. He was in it for the promise of dirt on HRC plain and simple, and had no idea he was going to be the victim of bait and switch where it turns out Veselnitskaya's real purpose was to talk about the Magnitsky Act. Smart woman. That much we get, but the media, smelling blood, is getting ahead of itself in several respects.

For one thing, no crime was actually committed, and would not have been committed unless Trump Jr. actually received the expected documents detailing dirt on HRC and then failed to report it to the FBI. Also, the media and their analysts have yet to ask the question, what if Trump Jr. had actually been given the promised Russian documents at the meeting. What would he have done with them? Of course, no need to ask him. He's shot his credibility by initially trying to fuzz over the purpose of the meeting. His best answer would be to say that he would have discussed what to do with others in the campaign.

Here's what I think would have happened had Veselnitskaya given Trump the documents he expected. Once in hand, there would have been an internal meeting of campaign big shots on what to do with them. At that point, the circle of advisors would have widened to include legal counsel. In short order, leaking the documents or using the information in them would have been identified as a crime against US law (receiving campaign help from a foreign source). At that point, the risk of using the material would have obviously outweighed the benefit of full disclosure to the FBI. Doing the latter would have been a silver bullet to quell suspicions that later arose that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia to defeat HRC. Even reporting the meeting at the time would have been a plus, but, hey, junior ain't that bright when it comes to politics.

zraver
13 Jul 17,, 02:18
z,



sure...we'll see if the FBI agrees with this assessment or not. they're not running an investigation into the HRC campaign

Given how many Clintonistas are on Mullers staff this is probably an accurate statement. I still hope (forelorny) that Sessions will take the FBI investigation already completed and prosecute.




and the Ukrainians or whatever Hannity is spewing now. my guess is that what Trump Jr did would be a violation of campaign finance law (https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/11/110.20), but by itself would not be enough to justify arrest/jail time.

Several law professors including liberals have opined that there is no violation of law. If there was then Ukraine's action would rise to the top.


in any case, considering how the Trump campaign has always disavowed any connection with Russia, it's sort of hard to believe this statement now considering Jr's response to an e-mail regarding a Russian purporting to have derogatory HRC information sourced from the Russian government. as i said, all grist for the Mueller investigation to dig deeper and tie things together.

[quote]consider Kushner's attempt to set up back-channel communications with Russia.

Not illegal...


consider Manafort's connections with Russia.

Less than Podestas and Clinton


consider Mike Flynn's lying about contacts with Russia.

He did not lie, he reported the contacts, he did not report the payments.


even ..stranger... is why none of them came forward to actively volunteer this information, if all of this was so innocent. each time it's dug up, we go through a round of denials and excuses before said person admitted to what they did. oh, Jr was there to collect Russian information regarding the HRC campaign and NOT talk about adoption like he originally said? i'm shocked, shocked i tell you.

Closing on a year and still zero evidence of any broken laws except for Flynn not reporting payments and that was before he was on the campaign. But hey keep harping on this giant nothing burger. Have you seen the poll from Huff Po? Less than 1 in 10 Americans cares,, they no its a non-story driven by partisan hacks. 0-5 in elections and can't even get double digit percentages in polls to care about THE issue the partisans are driving. 18 is shaping up to be very good for the GOP.

astralis
13 Jul 17,, 05:19
bfng,


Dems have congress tied up with how many investigations?

lol...none?

Senate intelligence committee investigation head: Burr (R)/ Warner (D)
Senate judiciary committee investigation head: Grassley (R)
House intelligence committee investigation head: Conaway (R), Schiff (D)
House oversight committee investigation: Gowdy (R)
Special counsel: Mueller...reporting to Trump appointee, Rubenstein.



Dems pushed off confirmation hearings on how many people for how long for all sorts of positions?

there are 564 executive branch jobs that require Presidential nominations, 384 of them have not been nominated by the administration.

of 130 formally nominated, 46 have been confirmed. you tell me who is more responsible, lol...especially considering that once again, the Senate is held by Republicans.


and you seem like a smart guy, are you saying that's all that's been going on?

nothing beyond the normal level of political discourse and bickering?


nope, in fact, this is -better- than the normal level of political discourse and bickering. you tell me, if the shoe was on the other foot and it was Obama or HRC in Trump's current position, do you really think the GOP would only do what the Dems are doing right now?

think of it this way: there were impeachment proceedings against Bill Clinton in 1998-- and do you honestly think what he did was -worse- than what the Trump campaign did?

astralis
13 Jul 17,, 05:27
JAD,


There's no question that Trump Jr. tried to fuzz the purpose of the meeting with Veselnitskaya. He was in it for the promise of dirt on HRC plain and simple, and had no idea he was going to be the victim of bait and switch where it turns out Veselnitskaya's real purpose was to talk about the Magnitsky Act. Smart woman. That much we get, but the media, smelling blood, is getting ahead of itself in several respects.

For one thing, no crime was actually committed, and would not have been committed unless Trump Jr. actually received the expected documents detailing dirt on HRC and then failed to report it to the FBI

as you see with my response to z above, i agree that Jr's actions in this case alone probably don't rise to the level of criminality. having said that:


Doing the latter would have been a silver bullet to quell suspicions that later arose that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia to defeat HRC. Even reporting the meeting at the time would have been a plus, but, hey, junior ain't that bright when it comes to politics.

it shouldn't just have been an issue of being "that bright when it comes to politics". what type of American sees an e-mail promising dirt coming from a hostile foreign government and -eagerly takes it-?

and even assuming that Jr wasn't "that bright", what about the other people invited to said meeting-- Kushner and Manafort?

it's pretty impressive just how easily all of these things were, oh, forgotten.

zraver
13 Jul 17,, 05:59
think of it this way: there were impeachment proceedings against Bill Clinton in 1998-- and do you honestly think what he did was -worse- than what the Trump campaign did?

He (an attorney) lied under oath in an attempt to deny an American citizen their day in Court in order to try and escape consequences for sexual harassment. He was impeached but the Dems refused to convict. The Courts however were not barred by this and stripped him of his law license. He broke trust with his office, his career and is quilty of moral turpitude. What he did undermined faith in the system, that justice is blind and equal.

Trump has done nothing that would see him convicted of a crime of moral turpitude.

JAD_333
13 Jul 17,, 08:04
JAD,


it shouldn't just have been an issue of being "that bright when it comes to politics". what type of American sees an e-mail promising dirt coming from a hostile foreign government and -eagerly takes it-?

and even assuming that Jr wasn't "that bright", what about the other people invited to said meeting-- Kushner and Manafort?

it's pretty impressive just how easily all of these things were, oh, forgotten.


Point taken, at least in part. Manafort would have (or should have known) accepting help "of value" from a foreign government is illegal, but again no help was forthcoming at the meeting. We simply have no way of knowing what Manafort would have done had she actually handed over documents from the Russians.

As for Kushner, he left the meeting early, probably after he realized the woman had no goods to offer. In his case, being a political neophyte at the time, he probably didn't know accepting such documents could be illegal. BTW, accepting help from a foreign national is only illegal if such help is deemed to have significant value. Foreign nationals have been known to work for political campaigns.

JAD_333
13 Jul 17,, 08:08
think of it this way: there were impeachment proceedings against Bill Clinton in 1998-- and do you honestly think what he did was -worse- than what the Trump campaign did?

What doings on the part of the Trump campaign are you referring to?