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Westlake Legal Group > corruption

Reporter Asks Trump if he’s Notified Congressional Leaders About al-Baghdadi Raid; ‘We Decided Not to Because Washington Leaks Like I’ve Never Seen Before’

Westlake Legal Group AP_18271664262015-620x419 Reporter Asks Trump if he’s Notified Congressional Leaders About al-Baghdadi Raid; ‘We Decided Not to Because Washington Leaks Like I’ve Never Seen Before’ william barr President Trump Nancy Pelosi Michael Horowitz Impeachment of President Trump Front Page Stories FISA Abuse report Featured Story elections democrats death of al-Baghdadi corruption Congress adam schiff 2020

President Donald Trump smiles during a meeting with Chilean president Sebastian Pinera, in the Oval Office of the White House, Friday, Sept. 28, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

 

After notifying the American people that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was dead, he was asked by a reporter if he has “notified the congressional leaders about this? Pelosi, Schiff, Mitch McConnell?”

President Trump replied:

We notified some. Others are being notified now as I speak. We were going to notify them last night but we decided not to do that because Washington leaks like I’ve never seen before. There’s no country in the world that leaks like we do. And Washington is a leaking machine. And I told my people we will not notify them until our great people are out, not just in, but out. I don’t want to have them greeted with firepower like you wouldn’t believe. So, we were able to get in. It was top secret…

A leak could have cost the deaths of all of them.

President Trump was right not to notify them ahead of time. They can’t be trusted. This is a group of people who have a vested interest in preventing Donald Trump from getting a win, especially a foreign policy win.

Democrats are notorious leakers. They impose strict secrecy rules around their impeachment inquiry meetings, then they strategically leak just the right sound bites, usually taken out of context.

And, coming on the heels of the sharp rebuke Trump has faced over his decision to withdraw troops from Northern Syria, this moment is all the sweeter. Would you trust Adam Schiff or Nancy Pelosi to put country before politics? I wouldn’t.

Given the choice between the deaths of 50 anonymous U.S. soldiers or watching Trump take a victory lap, I believe they would choose the former. And then Pelosi would appear on cable and ask Americans to pray for our fallen soldiers and their families.

DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz delivered his completed FISA Abuse report to Attorney General William Barr over six weeks ago. Democratic leaders know exactly what’s in it. Yet, there hasn’t been a single leak which I find to be extraordinary. If there were some good news in there for Democrats and/or some bad news for Republicans, there would have been a leak.

That’s how the Democrats operate. They just can’t help themselves.

Here’s to our troops!

The post Reporter Asks Trump if he’s Notified Congressional Leaders About al-Baghdadi Raid; ‘We Decided Not to Because Washington Leaks Like I’ve Never Seen Before’ appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group Kanye-Trump-2-225x300 Reporter Asks Trump if he’s Notified Congressional Leaders About al-Baghdadi Raid; ‘We Decided Not to Because Washington Leaks Like I’ve Never Seen Before’ william barr President Trump Nancy Pelosi Michael Horowitz Impeachment of President Trump Front Page Stories FISA Abuse report Featured Story elections democrats death of al-Baghdadi corruption Congress adam schiff 2020   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Little Noticed Whistleblower Story from August 2018 Involving ONA Director, Col. James Baker, Takes on Greater Significance in the Wake of Flynn Filing

Westlake Legal Group pentagon-620x365 Little Noticed Whistleblower Story from August 2018 Involving ONA Director, Col. James Baker, Takes on Greater Significance in the Wake of Flynn Filing ONA Chief of Staff Cmdr. Anthony Russell (USCG) Marine Lt. Col. Brian Bruggeman. Liberal Elitism Kerry Picket Front Page Stories Featured Story donald trump Director Col. James H. Baker corruption Allow Media Exception Adam Lovinger Abuse of Power 2020

FILE РThe Pentagon is seen in this aerial view in Washington, in this March 27, 2008 file photo. The Pentagon has revised its Law of War guidelines to remove wording that could permit U.S. military commanders to treat war correspondents as “unprivileged belligerents” if they think the journalists are sympathizing or cooperating with enemy forces. The amended manual, published on July 22, 2016, also drops wording that equated journalism with spying. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File)

 

While reviewing reader comments on my recent post about General Michael Flynn’s stunning October 24th court filing, I learned of a largely overlooked story reported in August 2018 by the Daily Caller’s Kerry Picket. It gained little traction at the time, but it’s become far more significant in light of the Flynn filing.

The Flynn filing alleges that Col. James Baker, Director of the Office of Net Assessment at the Pentagon (ONA), leaked copies of the transcripts from Flynn’s December 2016 telephone calls to then-Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak to the press. Baker had regularly scheduled lunches with The Washington Post’s David Ignatius whom published an article about the calls in January 2017.

Picket told the story of Pentagon whistleblower Adam Lovinger, then an ONA analyst and a Trump-supporter, whose security clearance had been revoked  after “he questioned why politically connected contractors like FBI-informant Stefan Halper, who spied on the Trump campaign for the bureau, received well-paid contracts to conduct “inherently governmental functions.”

One contractor hired by ONA , the Long-Term Strategy Group (LTSG), is owned by Chelsea Clinton’s “best friend” Jackie Newmyer-Deal. “Over the past decade, LTSG secured more than $11.2 million in contracts from ONA.”

Picket reports:

Lovinger warned his superiors at ONA about the legal issues specifically pertaining to LTSG’s Newmyer-Deal being designated as a “U.S. Representative” in bilateral foreign relation activities with the Japanese.

In an incident with another ONA contractor (not LTSG), Lovinger disclosed to Baker that the contractor copied a World Bank report onto the contractor’s own letterhead and passed it off as original work.

In August of 2016, Bill Gertz of The Washington Free Beacon wrote a series of pieces related to the ONA’s over-reliance on government contractors and the problems surfacing as a result.

The stories covered how much contractors were paid, the questionable value of their product, critical threats that went ignored, and favorable treatment of Clinton’s contractor friend Newmyer-Deal.

Lovinger’s (Statement of Reason) SOR, which had been prepared by his attorney, Sean Bigley, claimed that Baker “inappropriately incentivized investigators to target him.” The document alleged that Baker “targeted him through several tactics, one of which was recommending two military officers for prestigious military medals as motivation to look into Lovinger as the target of a classified leak probe.”

One investigator, ONA Chief of Staff Cmdr. Anthony Russell (USCG), received a “recommendation for Award of the Defense Superior Service Medal…Russell was the architect of two national security inquiries targeting Lovinger.”

On November 23, 2016, The Washington Free Beacon published an article which criticized the ONA. Lovinger’s SOR stated, “The piece ended up revealing sensitive information provided by the Japanese government which had been included in an LTSG report prepared at the behest of ONA.”

According to Picket:

Russell served as the action officer and primary American representative for the United States/Japan Bilateral Task Force, yet he bore no responsibility to the mishandling of the Japanese intelligence.” In the letter Baker wrote to recommend Russell for the “Defense Superior Service Award,” he wrote that Russell had a “positive impact” on the Japanese/American alliance. Two days later Baker recommended Russell for a command position for having the “highest standards of ethics.”

Lovinger’s security clearance was suspended and job detail canceled nearly a month earlier.

In his recommendation of Russell, Baker wrote, “Commander Russell was entrusted with handling several unique, very delicate personnel matters where he provided thoughtful, sound advice and acted with discretion and candor.” He continues, “His exquisite analysis of facts and balancing of considerations resulted in ideal courses of actions that upheld the highest standards of integrity and ethics.”

Prior to filing his complaint, Lovinger had been in the running for a senior directorship at the National Security Counsel. Russell’s attempts to derail this opportunity caught the eye of Washington Headquarters Service General Counsel James Vietti.

Vietti emailed Russell on January 17, 2017, warning him that his investigation  “could look like you’re trying to interfere with or hinder his advancement in some way—and that the e-mail would be sent after he complained to (I think I’m recalling this correctly) that Mr. Baker violated the Hatch Act.” He wrote that he must “establish that this was—at least at the beginning—an inquiry into specific allegations of misconduct (rather than a ‘go forth and find a justification to fire him’ sort of investigation).” He also advised Russell not to “get ahead of NSC’s possible concerns” of Lovinger and proposed that he “pare back” language in an proposed email that Vietti had reviewed. Russell had written that  he “would urge NSC not to bring on an employee under administrative inquiry right now.”

The other officer whom Baker had allegedly designated to investigate Lovinger was Marine Lt. Col. Brian Bruggeman. Baker issued the request on January 12, 2017 and issued a February 10th deadline, which Bruggeman did not meet.

According to the SOR:

Five days before the report was due, Baker recommended Bruggeman for the “Defense Superior Service Award.”

An e-mail exchange between Feb. 27 and 28 between Bruggeman and Lovinger related to setting up a meeting with one another included Bruggeman telling Lovinger that the meeting was his “last opportunity to cooperate.”

The meeting occurred on March 6, 2017. On March 7, Lovinger’s attorney Thomas Spencer, sent a letter to Bruggeman memorializing the meeting had happened and that Bruggeman had promised to have a written recollection of his questions and answers, since Bruggeman previously forbade any audio recording of the meeting.

Although Lovinger met with Bruggeman and responded to his questions March 6, he was nevertheless accused of “refusing to cooperate” with Bruggeman, “which was tantamount to insubordination,” for failing to appear at previously scheduled interviews on February 21 and 23.

According to Lovinger’s SOR response to Bruggeman’s allegation, however, the delay occurred because Bruggeman “was ignorant of basic due process norms. While the DoD Inspector General requires DoD investigators to ‘possess professional proficiency for the tasks required,’ Bruggeman expressed shock, panic, embarrassment, and then anger when he learned that Lovinger had the right to legal counsel. This caused delay.”

Several days before Picket published this article, on August 20, 2018, watchdog group Judicial Watch filed a FOIA lawsuit against the Department of Defense for documents relating to this case.

A  Judicial Watch document states that Lovinger was already a senior director at the White House National Security Counsel by that time, so at least Baker and Russell’s interference was unsuccessful.

The Washington Times reported on August 14, 2019 that Lovinger had been cleared of the bogus charges against him.

This story illustrates the role a whistleblower’s political persuasion plays in how their complaint will be received. It also provides a glimpse into the character of the man who is alleged to have leaked classified information to his pal, Washington Post report David Ignatius. It tells us that Baker is not above trying to destroy a man’s career for political gain.

Unfortunately, there are many James Bakers.

The post Little Noticed Whistleblower Story from August 2018 Involving ONA Director, Col. James Baker, Takes on Greater Significance in the Wake of Flynn Filing appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group IMG_4279-300x199 Little Noticed Whistleblower Story from August 2018 Involving ONA Director, Col. James Baker, Takes on Greater Significance in the Wake of Flynn Filing ONA Chief of Staff Cmdr. Anthony Russell (USCG) Marine Lt. Col. Brian Bruggeman. Liberal Elitism Kerry Picket Front Page Stories Featured Story donald trump Director Col. James H. Baker corruption Allow Media Exception Adam Lovinger Abuse of Power 2020   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Exposed: Biden Used his Position at Least Twice to Help Issues Hunter’s Firm Was Lobbying

Westlake Legal Group 17329344-1af8-4a1f-8631-ab65d20076a0-1 Exposed: Biden Used his Position at Least Twice to Help Issues Hunter’s Firm Was Lobbying Ukraine lobbying Joe Biden hunter biden Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story Featured Post democrats corruption biden Allow Media Exception

Remember how Joe Biden has repeatedly claimed that he didn’t talk to his son Hunter about his business dealings?

Let’s re-rack one of the videos for you.

That of course wasn’t quite true as his son later acknowledged when he said they had a brief conversation about his business in Ukraine. Joe Biden was also seen in a picture on a golfing outing with Devon Archer, Hunter’s business partner.

There have been questions raised in the past about Joe Biden’s actions in relation to his son’s business. He threatened to withhold aid from Ukraine unless they fired a prosecutor who was allegedly investigating his son’s Ukrainian firm. He flew his son on Air Force 2 to China where his son then met with Chinese people in the process of finalizing a business deal. And he was questioned by Tom Brokaw about actions he had taken as a Senator backing policies supportive of MBNA while his son was working for them.

But now the Washington Examiner is raising even more questions about Joe Biden’s actions.

According to the Examiner, Biden intervened on at least two occasions, privately contacting two federal agencies dealing with issues on which his son was lobbying. That intervention could have helped Hunter to the tune of “tens of thousands of dollars.”

On Feb. 28, 2007, Biden contacted DHS to express that he was “concerned about the Department’s proposed chemical security regulations authorized by Section 550 of DHS Appropriations Act of 2007,” according to the department’s log of its contacts with members of Congress.

Section 550, which was passed in 2006 as part of the DHS appropriations bill, requires high-risk chemical plants to submit site safety plans to DHS for approval, including security credentialing and training for employees.

Eight weeks earlier, the Industrial Safety Training Council had hired Hunter Biden’s firm to lobby DHS on the issue. The trade group, which represents companies that provide safety training for chemical facility employees, was mounting a heavy lobbying campaign over section 550, submitting congressional testimony about the need to expand background checks for chemical plant employees.

The Industrial Safety Training Council was seeking to expand the “language in DHS legislation regarding security clearance and credentialing for chemical facility employees and employers” in January 2007, according to lobbying disclosure records.

The Industrial Safety Training Council paid Hunter’s firm, Oldaker, Biden & Belair, $200,000 between 2007 and the end of 2008.

In the second incident in 2007, Joe Biden reached out to the Attorney General at the time, Alberto Gonzales, to talk about expanding the federal fingerprint background check system.

“I write to request your assistance in implementing an expanded background check system for our nation’s volunteer organizations,” wrote Biden. “If we can work together to expand the number of volunteer organizations that have access to fast, accurate, and inexpensive fingerprint background checks, we will make significant and important strides in our ongoing effort to protect kids across our country.”

Biden added, “I would like to convene a small meeting with key representatives” from DOJ, the FBI, members of Congress and volunteer groups.

One of Hunter’s firm’s lobbying clients at the time, a coalition of state-level criminal justice advocates called SEARCH, was also lobbying the federal government for a broader fingerprint screening system at the time.

The same day as Biden’s letter, SEARCH adopted a resolution calling on Congress to consider “any effort to improve the quality, completeness and accessibility of criminal history records” and expand the current system to “allow the return of all criminal history record information maintained by the States on the search subject through a single fingerprint check.”

SEARCH was already paying Hunter’s firm for lobbying for criminal justice programs, paying them $114,000 in 2007. But after Joe Biden introduced a bill in March to establish a national fingerprint background check system for volunteer groups that worked with children, Hunter’s firm began lobbying for the bill and SEARCH paid the firm $93,000 that year.

Tom Anderson, Director of the National Legal and Policy Center, a government watchdog group, called out the appearance of impropriety, saying “it was implausible” that Joe Biden didn’t know about his son’s lobbying and that “sometimes appearances are exactly what they are.”

Indeed it’s hard to imagine Joe Biden just happened to reach out to federal agencies at the same time his son’s firm was lobbying on such issues. It’s the exact same problem that Tom Brokaw asked him about MBNA when Biden was running for president in 2008. What did Joe say then? “My son has never spoken to me”

Astonishing the number of coincidences between Joe Biden’s political actions and Hunter Biden’s business actions. For people who don’t talk.

At what point do the coincidences become too much?

The post Exposed: Biden Used his Position at Least Twice to Help Issues Hunter’s Firm Was Lobbying appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group 17329344-1af8-4a1f-8631-ab65d20076a0-1-300x153 Exposed: Biden Used his Position at Least Twice to Help Issues Hunter’s Firm Was Lobbying Ukraine lobbying Joe Biden hunter biden Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story Featured Post democrats corruption biden Allow Media Exception   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

News Summary from the Week that Was (20 – 26 October)

This is my weekly summary of news that the legacy media and Democrats have obfuscated for partisan political reasons. Once again, I am doing longer quotes of fewer articles this week, as I am still overseas. Here we go.

1. We’ve talked about this one before: corruption in US foreign aid. Foggy Bottom needs to be shut down, and all US foreign aid stopped because it is nothing but a piggy bank for the political class.

A senior Guatemalan official said his nation was aware President Donald Trump was going to cut funding to his nation, saying he understands the decision as the majority of funds designated to aid his nation’s poorest through development projects and other charities rarely reaches those who need it most. “To be honest with you, I don’t think most of that money is actually being properly used in our country, mainly in Guatemala,” Duarte told me. “A lot of that money goes to NGOs who spend it on mostly doing analysis and white papers sent studies. The money’s not really going towards the people. There’s no significant projects that really help us along those lines.”

Duarte noted that last week he had “a conversation with a couple of project managers from USAID that have worked here in Guatemala, they have worked in Haiti, they have worked in Africa, they have worked in Afghanistan and the issue here is that the projects are almost like pet projects for some political ideal.”

Read the rest here. If you think that’s the only country in which USAID dollars are wasted, then you’ve got another think coming! We need to shut down all US foreign aid and pour it in to rebuilding inner city slums in the United States, as well as to complete the Wall.

2. More great economic news in the Age of Trump that will never be discussed in the legacy media:

Latino-owned businesses are experiencing significant growth thanks to a strong economy, a Biz2Credit study found. Rohit Arora, Biz2Credit’s CEO, said Latino business owners are enjoying a 46 percent jump in revenue this year, which will bolster the nation’s thriving economy. [O]ur research finds that revenues of Latino-owned companies jumped 23% from 2017-18.

The fact is that Hispanics are flourishing in the Trump economy. Democrats asserting the contrary is a mere partisan talking point to try to deny Trump the Hispanic support he has earned and which may decide the presidential election outcome next year. Expect Democrats to increase their identity politics attacks in an effort to skew Latinos against Republicans over the next year and a half.

Read the rest here. This is more excellent evidence that the Trump economy is color-blind. His economic policies are working great! Tax and regulation cuts work every time they’re tried.

3. The “muh Russia” house of cards continues to fall apart. Here is the latest news courtesy of the British.

British intelligence told the FBI that dossier author Christopher Steele sometimes showed questionable judgment regarding investigative targets, according to a report that could preview some of the findings in a highly anticipated Justice Department watchdog report of FBI surveillance against the Trump campaign. Investigators with the Justice Department’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG) have asked witnesses about an assessment that MI6 officials provided the FBI regarding Steele, a former MI6 officer based in London.

The FBI’s handling of information from Steele is central to the OIG investigation into whether the bureau complied with laws and regulations in applications for Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrants against Carter Page, a former Trump campaign aide.  The OIG has also raised concerns, according to The Times, that the FBI overhyped Steele’s value as a confidential source in the applications to obtain the Page FISAs. The FBI relied heavily on information from Steele in the FISA applications, the first of which was granted on Oct. 21, 2016.

Read the rest here. Despite the Brits’ concerns, the tainted Obama FBI pressed ahead with the so-called Steele dossier. Little by little, the onion is getting peeled back.

4. Too bad, Obama and George Soros!

The Supreme Court, in another defeat for gerrymandering reformers, overturned a lower court’s ruling that Michigan’s electoral districts are overly partisan and need to be redrawn. Monday’s order follows a June decision from the nation’s top court that found that questions related to partisan gerrymandering are not under the jurisdiction of federal courts. The new order returns the case to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. A three-judge panel in that court had ruled that 34 state legislative and congressional districts needed to be redrawn because they were designed to favor Republicans.

The Supreme Court’s ruling that federal courts cannot weigh in on partisan gerrymandering cases was blasted by activists, who have sought to advance their fight against politically-drawn maps in the courts. Former Obama Attorney General Eric Holder, chairman of the National Democratic Redistricting Committee, at the time called the decision one which “tears at the fabric of our democracy.”

Read the rest here. I’m liking it. Any time Obama and Eric Holder are thwarted by the USSC is a day to celebrate.

5. Judicial Watch continues to do the people’s business. This time it’s on Benghazi (plus more).

Judicial Watch today released new Clinton emails on the Benghazi controversy that had been covered up for years and would have exposed Hillary Clinton’s email account if they had been released when the State Department first uncovered them in 2014. The long-withheld email, clearly responsive to Judicial Watch’s lawsuit seeking records concerning “talking points or updates on the Benghazi attack,” contains Clinton’s private email address and a conversation about the YouTube video that sparked the Benghazi talking points scandal. “This email is a twofer – it shows Hillary Clinton misled the U.S. Senate on Benghazi and that the State Department wanted to hide the Benghazi connection to the Clinton email scheme,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “Rather than defending her email misconduct, the Justice Department has more than enough evidence to reopen its investigations into Hillary Clinton.”

Judicial Watch’s discovery over the last several months found many more details about the scope of the Clinton email scandal and cover-up:

  • John Hackett, former Director of Information Programs and Services (IPS) testifiedunder oath that he had raised concerns that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s staff may have “culled out 30,000” of the secretary’s “personal” emails without following strict National Archives standards. He also revealed that he believed there was interference with the formal FOIA review process related to the classification of Clinton’s Benghazi-related emails.
  • Heather Samuelson, Clinton’s White House liaison at the State Department, and later Clinton’s personal lawyer, admittedunder oath that she was granted immunity by the Department of Justice in June 2016.
  • Justin Cooper, former aide to President Bill Clinton and Clinton Foundation employee who registered the domain name of the unsecure clintonemail.com server that Clinton used while serving as Secretary of State, testifiedhe worked with Huma Abedin, Clinton’s deputy chief of staff, to create the non-government email system.
  • In the interrogatory responsesof E.W. (Bill) Priestap, assistant director of the FBI Counterintelligence Division, he stated that the agency found Clinton email records in the Obama White House, specifically, the Executive Office of the President.
  • Jacob “Jake” Sullivan, Clinton’s senior advisor and deputy chief of staff when she was secretary of state, testifiedthat both he and Clinton used her unsecure non-government email system to conduct official State Department business.
  • Eric Boswell, former assistant secretary of state for diplomatic security during Clinton’s tenure as secretary of state, testifiedthat Clinton was warned twice against using unsecure BlackBerry’s and personal emails to transmit classified material.

Read the rest here. Time to reopen EVERY investigation of Shrillary: U-1, Benghazi, Clinton Foundation, email server, etc.

6. This is an incredible opinion piece by Victor Davis Hanson that needs to be read from stem to stern. Here are just a few excerpts:

[W]hy the unadulterated hatred? For the small number of NeverTrumpers, of course, Trump’s crudity in speech and crassness in manner nullify his accomplishments: the unattractive messenger has fouled an otherwise tolerable message. While they recognize in the abstract that the randy JFK, the repugnant LBJ, and the horny Bill Clinton during their White House tenures were far grosser in conduct than has been Donald Trump, they either assume presidential ethics should have evolved or they were not always around to know of past bad behavior first hand, or believe Trump’s crude language is worse than prior presidents’ crude behavior in office. But the NeverTrumpers are and remain a tiny segment of the electorate who have had zero effect in swaying Republicans and only marginal influence in persuading swing voters, in their new roles as occasionally useful naïfs of the hard Left.

Far more importantly, why do the media, academia, the entertainment and professional sports industries, the progressive Left, the administrative state, and most Democratic officeholders despise him so? His brashness bothers them of course. His quirky tweets and name-calling certainly. His loud rallies, his public put-downs, and his feuding are certainly not matched by those of past presidents. But the real source of their antipathy is his agenda.

Had Donald Trump in his first month as president declared that he was a centrist Republican —as many suspicious Never Trumpers predicted that he would, true to past form—and promoted cap-and-trade and solar and wind federal subsidies, tabled pipeline construction and abated federal leasing for gas and oil production, stayed in the Iran nuclear deal and Paris Climate Accord, appointed judges in the tradition of John Paul Stevens and David Souter, praised the “responsible” Palestinian leaders, “comprehensive immigration reform” as a euphemism for blanket amnesties, then Trump would be treated largely as a George H.W. Bush or George W. Bush: hated, of course, but not obsessively so.

More importantly, had Trump just collapsed or stagnated the economy, as predicted by the likes of Paul Krugman and Larry Summers, he would now be roundly denounced, but again not so vilified, given his political utility for the Left in 2020 as a perceived Herbert Hoover-esque scapegoat. Had Trump kept within the media and cultural sidelines by giving interviews to “60 Minutes,” speaking at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, bringing in a few old Republican hands to run the staff or handle media relations like a David Gergen or Andrew Card, Trump would have been written off as a nice enough dunce.

But Trump did none of that. So, the hatred of the media, the Left, the swamp, and the celebrity industry is predicated more on the successful Trump agenda. He is systematically undoing what Barack Obama wrought, in the manner Obama sought to undo with his eight years the prior eight years of George W. Bush. But whereas the Obama economy stagnated and his foreign policy was seen by adversaries and rivals as a rare occasion to recalibrate the world order at American’s expense, Trump mostly did not fail—at least not yet.

We are currently in an economic boom while most of the world economy abroad is inert. Had the economy just crashed as predicted, the Trump agenda would have been discredited and he would be written off a pitiful fool rather than an existential monster. Again, hatred arises at what Trump did even more than what he says or how he says it.

Read the rest of this great article here. VDH nails it yet again! They hate POTUS because he is rolling back their decades-long march toward globalism, as well as exposing them all for the grifters and globalists they are.

7. Next up, it’s about time that Brennan et all started feeling the heat!

The secretive Justice Department inquiry into the Trump-Russia investigation’s origins now includes former CIA Director John Brennan, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, former FBI special agent Peter Strzok, and British ex-spy Christopher Steele. U.S. Attorney John Durham, whose investigative portfolio recently expanded to include events from the launch of the inquiry in 2016 through the appointment of special counsel Robert Mueller in 2017, has taken overseas fact-finding trips. But Durham’s focus on the actions taken by specific individuals makes his mission look like it could transform into a criminal investigation. And the line of questioning Durham has taken with potential witnesses — some in line with claims made by President Trump and other Republicans — puts his efforts into sharper focus. Durham has not yet interviewed Strzok, McCabe, former FBI Director James Comey, or former FBI general counsel James Baker.

Durham is speaking to witnesses about Steele, the former MI6 agent whose dossier was used to obtain secret surveillance warrants against Trump campaign associate Carter Page, and Durham wants to know why the FBI used unverified information in its filings with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court Durham also intends to interview CIA analysts and officials involved in the Russia investigation, prompting some to seek legal representation, and NBC News reported tension between the CIA and the DOJ over what classified information he should have access to.

Durham has already talked to two dozen current and former FBI agents as part of his effort. DOJ spokeswoman Kerri Kupec said the department was exploring the extent to which “a number of countries” played a role in the Trump-Russia investigation, and Barr and Durham reached out to the United Kingdom, Italy, and Australia.

Read the rest here. One could argue that this is all taking too long, but it’s also true that the little fish need to be rolled up before questioning the big fish, too. The fact that Brennan and other cabal members are squawking bigly in public these days is GOOD sign.

8. Here’s a story which spells political death for Democrats pursuing their fake impeachment on bogus charges. And watch what happens when AG Barr/USA Durham start the indictments!

A memo by the Republican National Committee (RNC) that contains internal GOP polling data shows the American public, even Democrat voters, are turning against the Democrat Party’s “impeachment inquiry” into President Donald Trump. The memo, obtained exclusively by Breitbart News, shows independent voters nationwide en masse oppose impeachment—with 54 percent opposed and only 34 percent in favor. “We have seen public polling drastically under sample Independent voters, which is one of the many reasons for so much incorrect public data over the past month,” the memo explains regarding the disparity between internal GOP numbers and public polling from news organizations and polling institutions.

What’s more, internal RNC polling data, according to this memo, shows Democrats have lost support among their own base significantly in just the past week. “Support among Democrats for the ridiculous attempt to remove the President from office is down 10 points over the past week,” the memo says. Among all voters, the memo says support for impeachment has dropped in the past week by five percent—a remarkable shift against the Democrats in just one week, while the president’s support levels have increased across the board, especially among Republicans, with whom he now enjoys a 90 percent approval rating. The memo notes that the RNC is closely tracking impeachment support and opposition with its own sophisticated polling method, which is more accurate than the public polling.

Read the rest here. I’ve been saying for years that the media polls are nothing but push polls that attempt to INFLUENCE public opinion in the favor of Democrat positions on the issues, not accurately REFLECT it!

9. Speaking of which (indictments), this news is already causing apoplexy among the culpable in the cabal (Clapper comes immediately to mind):

U.S. Attorney John Durham’s ongoing probe into potential FBI and Justice Department misconduct in the run-up to the 2016 election through the spring of 2017 has transitioned into a full-fledged criminal investigation. One source added that DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s upcoming report on alleged FBI surveillance abuses against the Trump campaign will shed light on why Durham’s probe has become a criminal inquiry. Horowitz announced … his report would be available to the public soon, with “few” redactions. The investigation’s new status means Durham can subpoena witnesses, file charges, and impanel fact-finding grand juries.

Read the rest here. Could this be the drizzle that precedes the deluge? Could very well be!

Here are the honorable mentions this week:

And here’s the short summary of this week’s “feature articles”:

  • A senior Guatemalan official confirms rampant corruption in foreign aid to his country.
  • Latino-owned businesses are prospering BIGLY in the Age of Trump.
  • British intelligence is covering their tracks on the Steele front by stating to the FBI that he was often a source of “questionable intelligence.” (Duh!)
  • In a blow to Obama and Soros, the Supreme Court overturned a lower court’s ruling that Michigan’s electoral districts are overly partisan and need to be redrawn
  • Judicial Watch continues to break ground on Hillary Clinton’s private email account – which was known by many even back in the Benghazi days (2012)!
  • Victor Davis Hanson explained why the Uniparty types are so virulently anti-Trump (it’s because he’s been so successful in rolling back Obama’s – and their – globalist agenda).
  • USA Durham’s investigation into Trump-Russia origins now includes former CIA Director John Brennan, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, former FBI special agent Peter Strzok, and British ex-spy Christopher Steele.
  • An RNC memo containing internal GOP polling data shows the American public (and even Democrat voters!) are turning against the Democrat Party’s “impeachment inquiry” into President Trump.
  • And the best news of all: the Durham probe has transitioned into a full-fledged criminal investigation.

I have to admit that I’m starting to feel a little bit giddy about all the good news that keeps coming out: the Ukraine star chamber is being discredited daily, some Republicans are finding their gonads (even if tiny), the media’s push-polls are failing to move the needle in the Democrats’ direction, Durham’s got a criminal investigation going now, the cabal are getting more unhinged by the day, the lefties on social media are apoplectic in defense of the cabal and Democrats, etc.

Life is pretty good – and it’s going to get even better as Horowitz’s FISA abuse report comes out in the days ahead! Stay tuned…

The end.

The post News Summary from the Week that Was (20 – 26 October) appeared first on RedState.

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Sebastian Gorka Detects Something Strange about John Brennan’s Twitter Account

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CIA Director John Brennan testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, June 16, 2016, before the Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on the Islamic State. Brennan said that the Islamic State remains “formidable” and “resilient,” is training and attempting to deploy operatives for further attacks on the West and will rely more on guerrilla-style tactics to compensate for its territorial losses in the Middle East. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

 

Radio host Sebastian Gorka spotted something very unusual about former CIA Director John Brennan’s twitter account today. Gorka tweeted, “Why hasn’t @BarackObama’s chief bagman @JohnBrennan not appeared on Social Media for 9 days now?”

Brennan typically posts at least every day or two, usually to take a jab at Trump or one of his associates. But he’s gone quiet.

I know what might explain it. It’s been a week since NBC reported that Attorney General William Barr and U.S. Attorney John Durham planned to expand their investigation and were said to be interested in interviewing Brennan and his colleague, former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper.

That had to be a blow and I’ll bet social media is just about the last thing on his mind.

I guess that’s what happens when you interfere in a U.S. election. Then, when you don’t get quite the result you were shooting for, you decide to do whatever it takes to overturn it. Not good for the soul John.

Oooh! I’m looking back at some of his previous tweets. Most of them are directed toward President Trump.

He does include several positive comments. Actually, he praises Mitt “Pierre Delecto” Romney for his courage and integrity! He writes, “How many other Republican Senators are ready to show the courage, integrity, & principled position of Senator Romney?”

Hopefully none.

He concludes with, “Thank you, Senator, for putting our Nation & our Constitution above party politics & the corrupt behavior of Donald Trump.”

In another tweet, he congratulates former National Security Advisor Susan Rice on her new book and commends her for her values. Did he catch what Susan said this week about Sen. Graham? Classy lady.

I bet Brennan was really rocked last night when he heard that Durham’s administrative review had shifted into a criminal investigation. At least he didn’t go on television to explain it all to us like his buddy, Andrew McCabe.

We may not be hearing much from Brennan in the near future. After all, finding just the right lawyer has got to be a very time consuming process. Poor Johnny.

Here are some of the responses to Gorka’s tweet:

He’s been on his alternate account, Juan Delicioso.

Check the airports!

He’s “remaining silent.” Probably on orders from his attorney.

He could be busy spilling the beans on all the rest.

It’s over Johnny!!!

He’s practicing trying to get his story straight…

He’s booking flights for Moscow…..

Nothing from either Brennen or BHO since 10/18.

The silence from Obama has been deafening as well.

My guess is he lawyered up.

I bet it was fun playing master of the universe for awhile, wasn’t it?

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WashEx: Biden interventions in 2007-8 benefited two Hunter clients

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As long as we’re on the subject of quid pro quos, it appears that Joe Biden has more than a little passing familiarity with the concept. As one of the most senior members of the Senate, Biden twice intervened with federal agencies in ways that benefited his son Hunter’s clients, the Washington Examiner’s Alana Goodman reports. Both interventions took place when Biden was running for president in 2007, and involve curiously arcane topics to everyone except Hunter’s clients:

On Feb. 28, 2007, Biden contacted DHS to express that he was “concerned about the Department’s proposed chemical security regulations authorized by Section 550 of DHS Appropriations Act of 2007,” according to the department’s log of its contacts with members of Congress.

Section 550, which was passed in 2006 as part of the DHS appropriations bill, requires high-risk chemical plants to submit site safety plans to DHS for approval, including security credentialing and training for employees.

Eight weeks earlier, the Industrial Safety Training Council had hired Hunter Biden’s firm to lobby DHS on the issue. The trade group, which represents companies that provide safety training for chemical facility employees, was mounting a heavy lobbying campaign over section 550, submitting congressional testimony about the need to expand background checks for chemical plant employees.

Just to remind everyone of the timing, Biden had announced his presidential bid on January 7, 2007, and he didn’t officially suspend it until almost precisely a year later on January 3, 2008. The official launch date of the Biden campaign was January 31, 2007, four weeks prior to Biden’s intervention at DHS. Having someone who was not just a senior senator but also a serious (at the time) contender for the presidential nomination taking an interest in security regs must have raised a few eyebrows at DHS.

And Biden’s interest in this arcane issue is curious, too. Biden sat on the Judiciary Committee in 2007 (having formerly chaired it) and chaired the Foreign Relations Committee. As far as can be seen on either Wikipedia or his campaign’s website, Biden never sat on the Homeland Security Committee, at that time or any other. Why would Biden take such an interest in an arcane DHS regulation at all, let alone the one that his son’s law firm client wanted to challenge?

The other intervention noted by Goodman was at least within the purview of one of Biden’s committee assignments. On the same day that Biden officially launched his presidential campaign, he took the time to check in with the Attorney General to request a meeting about boosting funding for a fingerprint system involved in federal background checks:

“I write to request your assistance in implementing an expanded background check system for our nation’s volunteer organizations,” wrote Biden. “If we can work together to expand the number of volunteer organizations that have access to fast, accurate, and inexpensive fingerprint background checks, we will make significant and important strides in our ongoing effort to protect kids across our country.”

Biden added, “I would like to convene a small meeting with key representatives” from DOJ, the FBI, members of Congress and volunteer groups.

One of Hunter’s firm’s lobbying clients at the time, a coalition of state-level criminal justice advocates called SEARCH, was also lobbying the federal government for a broader fingerprint screening system at the time.

In this case, however, Biden’s intervention went beyond a phone call. Early the next year, after Biden dropped out of the presidential primary campaign, he returned to the Senate and Judiciary to author the Child Protection Improvements Act. Guess what the bill contained, and guess who lobbied for its passage?

Biden introduced a bill called the “Child Protection Improvements Act” on March 13, 2008, which created a national fingerprint background check system for volunteer groups that worked with children. Oldaker, Biden & Belair promptly began lobbying for the bill on behalf of their client, SEARCH, according to lobbying records. SEARCH paid the firm $93,000 in 2008, records show.

It turned out that Biden’s seat on Judiciary came in handy for Hunter and his client.

Later that year when Barack Obama selected Joe Biden as his running mate, Hunter left the firm. That was due to concerns about Hunter’s connections to Biden’s actions in the Senate, as well as Biden’s attempts to leverage his influence to find his son a different job, according to a 2007 lawsuit brought by one of Biden’s business associates:

Before Joe Biden launched his second campaign for president in November 2006, he sought to find Hunter Biden a new line of work as he became “concerned with the impact that Hunter’s lobbying activities might have on his expected campaign for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination,” according to court documents filed by Hunter Biden’s former business associate Anthony Lotito in New York in 2007 as part of a dispute between the two men.

According to claims Lotito made as part of a lawsuit targeting the Bidens, Joe Biden tasked his brother, James, with finding his son a new job, and James Biden reached out to Lotito for help.

“[James] Biden told Lotito that, in light of these concerns, his brother had asked him to seek Lotito’s assistance in finding employment for Hunter in a non-lobbying capacity,” the court documents read. “Lotito agreed to help, and, in connection therewith, began to consider whether any of his contacts in the financial community might be a good starting place in which to seek out employment on Hunter’s behalf.”

Shortly after Lotito connected with Hunter and James Biden, the trio worked with Lotito to acquire a hedge fund called Paradigm. But within months, the deal began to unravel. Lotito filed the lawsuit in New York accusing the Bidens of cutting him out of the Paradigm deal, and the Bidens countered that Lotito had misrepresented the value of the hedge fund they had acquired.

The Bidens eventually settled with Lotito in 2008 after incurring “$1.3 million in out-of-pocket losses,” according to court records filed by the Bidens in the case. Hunter Biden later called the ordeal “a tragicomedy,” according to The New Yorker.

It’s quite the track record of the appearance of nepotism and familial enrichment.  That brings us to this morning, when Joe Biden tried to make an “at least we’re not the Trumps!” argument on CBS:

“Do you believe President Trump’s children have acted properly and avoided conflicts of interest?” O’Donnell asked.

“Look, I  wasn’t raised to go after the children. Their actions speak for themselves. I can just tell you this, that if I’m president, get elected president, my children are not gonna have offices in the White House. My children are not gonna sit in on cabinet meetings,” Biden said.

Hunter hasn’t really needed a desk in Joe’s office, has he?

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Americans See Right Through the Democrats’ Impeachment Star Chamber

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THE STAR CHAMBER [US 1983] Date: 1983

Wednesday was “smoking gun” day according to the despicable Adam Schff, the House Intel Committee chairman who narrowly survived a censure vote this week. His serial lying began with over 250 public promises (mostly on the thoroughly discredited CNN and MSNBC) since January 2017 that he “had the goods” on President Trump that would decisively prove Russian collusion and lead directly the articles of impeachment.

Who could forget his opening statement before his own committee during hearings in late September in which Kurt Volker was questioned about the President’s phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky? Schiff later during that same hearing was forced to back off on that bald-faced lie and call his own opening statement a “parody” because POTUS released the phone call transcript.

Then he lied about his prior coordination with the Ukraine “leaker”, as well as his own and staffers’ direct connections to Ukraine (Schiff took money from a Ukrainian arms dealer). Here is just one example:

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Then Schiff violated House traditions by preventing committee Republicans from having direct access to witness testimony, enabling Schiff and other Democrats to selectively leak and spin damaging testimony  while at the same time precluding the release of testimony that exonerates the President from the salacious quid pro quo accusations that form the basis for the Democrats’ fake “impeachment inquiry.”

Things really came to a head on Wednesday, as Republicans confronted Schiff’s Soviet-style control of House Intel Committee hearings:

House Republicans led by Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., on Wednesday essentially stormed a closed-door session connected to the impeachment investigation of President Trump, prompting House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff to suspend the proceedings in a remarkable scene. The standoff happened Wednesday morning after lawmakers held a press conference in which they accused House Democrats of lack of transparency. The Republicans specifically called out Schiff, D-Calif., who is leading the investigation. “Voting members of Congress are being denied access from being able to see what’s happening behind these closed doors where they’re trying to impeach the president of the United States with a one-sided set of rules,” Scalise continued. “They call the witnesses. They don’t let anybody else call the witnesses.”

[Rep. Byrne:] “Adam Schiff just SHUT DOWN his secret underground impeachment hearing after I led a group of Republicans into the room. Now he’s threatening me with an Ethics complaint! I’m on the Armed Services Cmte but being blocked from the Dept. Asst. SecDef’s testimony. This is a SHAM!” Rep. Bradley Byrne, R-Ala., tweeted.

Read the rest here.  It’s about damn time Republicans upped their game against Schiff, isn’t it? But it gets better.

In two minutes of devastating testimony before the House Intel Committee in a SCIF on day before the Republicans’ committee-crashing activities, John Ratcliffe (R-TX) destroyed the Democrats’ star witness, Ukraine’s top diplomat, William Taylor. While the Democrats selectively leaked Taylor’s opening statement and stated that Taylor provided the “smoking gun” proving the supposed quid pro quo (trumpeted everywhere in the legacy media), here is what Rep. Ratcliffe accomplished in directly questioning Taylor in his own words, as he reported afterwards on FNC:

I found [Taylor] to be very forthright. He had very strong opinions about Donald Trump’s approach to foreign policy. But again, the mainstream media reporting that he provided evidence of a quid pro quo involving military aid is false. I questioned him directly on that. And under [House Intelligence Chairman] Adam Schiff’s rules I can’t tell you what he said, but I can tell you what he didn’t say. And neither he or any other witness has provided testimony that the Ukrainians were aware that military aid was being withheld. You can’t have a quid pro quo with no quo.

Watch the whole interview here.  Yes, you read that right: Taylor provided zero evidence of a quid pro quo; to the contrary, Taylor denied there was a quid pro quo offered during the two presidents’ phone call! And yet Schiff’s committee rules precluded Ratcliffe from reporting Taylor’s actual testimony! That’s direct confirmation that Schiff is running a Soviet-style kangaroo court focused solely on impeaching the President, regardless of the existence of exonerating testimony!

Fortunately, rational and normal Americans retain a sense of fairness and can see through the Democrats’ charade. Now comes a report that the Democrat-media attempts to sway public opinion toward impeachment is in fact backfiring on them:

A memo by the Republican National Committee (RNC) that contains internal GOP polling data shows the American public, even Democrat voters, are turning against the Democrat Party’s “impeachment inquiry” into President Donald Trump. The memo, obtained exclusively by Breitbart News, shows independent voters nationwide en masse oppose impeachment—with 54 percent opposed and only 34 percent in favor. “We have seen public polling drastically under sample Independent voters, which is one of the many reasons for so much incorrect public data over the past month,” the memo explains regarding the disparity between internal GOP numbers and public polling from news organizations and polling institutions.

What’s more, internal RNC polling data, according to this memo, shows Democrats have lost support among their own base significantly in just the past week. “Support among Democrats for the ridiculous attempt to remove the President from office is down 10 points over the past week,” the memo says.

Read the rest here. There is much more in that article about the flawed polling methods employed by Gallup and Fox News that resulted in the sensational (and false!) claims that over 50% of Americans support impeachment!

Normal people can see through the B.S. The Democrats, including those who infest the legacy media, have been trying every which way from Sunday to drum up public support for impeachment through false allegations, lies, sensationalist reporting, and selective leaking. And it’s NOT WORKING! To the contrary, support for the President’s successful policies and demonstrated results has been climbing inexorably. But for the Democrats, impeachment is all they’ve got, as they are desperate to protect their Ukrainian slush-fund which, when fully exposed, will likely implicate the lot of them – including that miserable Adam “Shifty” Schiff!

I can’t wait for AG Barr and US Attorney Durham to bring the pain. That day is coming soon. The Democrats have sown the wind with the false allegations against the President for over two years, and they will soon reap the political whirlwind.

The end.

Late note! It turns out that Schiff’s “star witness” was on the board of an Ukrainian NGO with direct ties to George Soros! How rotten and corrupt are these Democrats, anyway? Check this out.

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NBC: Say, guess who “advised” a Romanian suspect while Biden demanded a crackdown on corruption?

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Stop us if you’ve heard this before, although perhaps not from NBC News. The Obama administration sends Joe Biden to a foreign country to press for corruption reform and prosecution. One of the obvious targets for that reform then hires an American lawyer to “advise” on his operations, and the lawyer just so happens to have the same last name as the Vice President.

Total coinky-dink, right? Gotta be a coinky-dink, although three times looks a little more like a pattern (via Jeff Dunetz)

The businessman was Gabriel “Puiu” Popoviciu, a wealthy Romanian real estate tycoon. The lawyer brought in to advise him was Hunter Biden, the son of then-Vice President Joe Biden, according to two people familiar with the matter.

Hunter Biden’s work for Popoviciu in 2016 went unreported at the time, but Joe Biden’s involvement in Romania was very much public. The vice president was among the leading voices pushing the government to crack down on corruption. …

“We don’t know what [Hunter Biden] was paid or what he was paid for but it does raise questions of whether this Romanian individual facing criminal charges was actually paying for a connection to the American vice president,” said Kathleen Clark, a Washington University law professor who specializes in government ethics.

It’s not the first time this has gotten flagged, as Jeff notes in his analysis. The New York Times, in a May 2019 report about criticism over Donald Trump’s demands to have the Bidens investigated, mentioned this Hunter Biden relationship briefly, albeit somewhat buried:

During his father’s second term as vice president, Hunter Biden increased his international business efforts, including with individuals and entities viewed warily by the United States government and its allies.

In addition to his work in Ukraine for the energy company Burisma, Hunter Biden advised a Romanian businessman with ties to the United States, Gabriel Popoviciu, whose real estate dealings had come under investigation, according to people familiar with the arrangement, which has not been previously reported. The investigation, which came as the United States and its allies were pushing Romania to clamp down on corruption, led to Mr. Popoviciu’s conviction and a prison sentence.

Why did this not get much attention in the latest round of questions about influence-peddling among the Bidens? The NBC News report hints at one potential explanation. As it turns out, there were more than one now-famous lawyer working for Popoviciu. During his legal woes, the Romanian mogul hired former FBI director Louis Freeh to do some actual legal work, and Freeh has continued with the case ever since, even after Popoviciu briefly absconded and was captured in London.

But guess who Freeh brought on as a consultant? Gulp:

Freeh continued working on behalf of Popoviciu. Last year, he tapped Giuliani, his longtime friend, to assist in his Romanian work.

Giuliani’s hiring created what appears in hindsight a strange-bedfellows arrangement. Giuliani, who has been the loudest critic of Hunter Biden’s work in the Ukraine, was working on the same side as the younger Biden in Romania.

In August 2018, Giuliani wrote a letter to Romania’s president and prime minister criticizing the country’s recent efforts to rein in corruption as overly aggressive. Giuliani’s position contradicted the U.S. stance on anti-corruption efforts in Romania.

At one point, Giuliani briefly threatened to spill the beans about Hunter Biden’s work in Romania too, but apparently thought better of it. As Popoviciu’s counsel, such a disclosure would likely be seen as a violation of attorney-client privilege unless Popoviciu explicitly waived it. NBC notes that Giuliani later backed down from his threat, saying that he only had heard “rumors” of what Biden did in Romania — and hasn’t had much to say about it since, at least not openly and on the record.

One has to wonder whether Giuliani wasn’t directly or indirectly the source for NBC on this story, but if so, he’s playing with fire. There is plenty of potential for backfire on Giuliani and Trump, especially with Giuliani’s attempted intervention there just before or at the same time as he was ramping up his focus on Hunter Biden’s work in Ukraine. Still, Giuliani isn’t Trump’s son and has long had his own practice separate from the Trumps. He didn’t get hired directly by Popoviciu either, but by Louis Freeh.

In contrast, Hunter Biden got hired by Popoviciu while his dad was VP and intervening in Romania where Hunter developed a financial interest. That sure sounds a lot like what happened in Ukraine, and similar to what happened with Hunter’s investment career in China, too.

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Major Development: The Deep State is in Deep Trouble

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Former FBI director James Comey testifies before the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, June 8, 2017. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

 

On Thursday evening, the New York Times reported that U.S. Attorney John Durham’s administrative review of the origins of the Trump/Russia investigation has shifted into a criminal inquiry. This major development grants Durham the power to subpoena witnesses and documents and to impanel a grand jury. Speculation has increased in the wake of reports that Attorney General William Barr and Durham had twice traveled to Rome and London to meet with intelligence officials recently and the news that Durham was interested in questioning both former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and former CIA Director John Brennan.

My colleague, Bonchie, posted on this story last night (here), writing that the mainstream media is portraying this as a political move. The following excerpt from the Times will give you an idea of how they plan to spin it. (Emphasis mine.)

The opening of a criminal investigation is likely to raise alarms that Mr. Trump is using the Justice Department to go after his perceived enemies.

…] The move also creates an unusual situation in which the Justice Department is conducting a criminal investigation into itself.

Mr. Barr’s reliance on Mr. Durham, a widely respected and veteran prosecutor who has investigated C.I.A. torture and broken up Mafia rings, could help insulate the attorney general from accusations that he is doing the president’s bidding and putting politics above justice.

[…] Federal investigators need only a “reasonable indication” that a crime has been committed to open an investigation, a much lower standard than the probable cause required to obtain search warrants. However, “there must be an objective, factual basis for initiating the investigation; a mere hunch is insufficient,” according to Justice Department guidelines.

Rather than acknowledging that Durham is zeroing in on the truth about the plot to destroy Donald Trump’s candidacy and following his unexpected victory, his presidency, they are characterizing it as Trump’s revenge. Still, there’s no doubt the major players involved in this travesty are starting to feel the squeeze.

MSNBC host Rachel Maddow, who has been peddling lies to her viewers for three years, characterized this latest move as a “frame job” and a “false flag operation” of the Trump campaign. She said, “This is the news that honestly, we’ve been sort of expecting for some time or thinking that if things got really bad, it might come to this…That is the conspiracy theory that the attorney general of the United States appears to have been going around the world trying to prove.”

It’s just crazy, isn’t it Rachel? Yes, now that Trump is on the verge of being impeached, his good buddy, Bill Barr, is going to bat for him. She will continue spewing this nonsense until Durham presents solid evidence of misconduct. At that point, her ratings, which fell by 25% following the release of the Mueller report, will crater.

Also last night, DOJ’s Inspector General Michael Horowitz announced that his long-anticipated report on alleged FISA abuse will be released in the next week to ten days with limited redactions. In a letter to lawmakers yesterday, which can be viewed here, he wrote that the classification process is “nearing an end” and explained that there will be one version of the final document. “Given the constructive progress that has been made during the classification review process, I do not anticipate a need to prepare and issue separate classified and public versions of the report.”

We know that Durham has questioned a number of CIA officials recently leading to speculation that the CIA outsourced some of their operations to their foreign counterparts to circumvent U.S. laws governing spying on U.S. citizens. Central to their investigation is the Maltese professor Joseph Mifsud. It was said that, on their most recent trip to Rome (at the end of September), Barr and Durham listened to a recording of a deposition provided by Mifsud in the summer of 2018 in which he explained his role in the saga. Additionally, Durham obtained two cell phones which Mifsud had used in 2016. Mifsud’s Swiss attorney, Stephan Roh, has been cooperating with Durham’s team for several months now.

In fact, the legal team of Trump’s former National Security Advisor, General Michael Flynn, believes there may be exculpatory evidence on those phones and they’re working to obtain them from Durham.

Former junior advisor for the Trump campaign George Papadopoulos, who was targeted by several “informants” in 2016, appeared on Fox News’ Martha MacCallum’s show recently and said:

Basically how I would summarize this, the grand statesman under Rome, Cicero, you know what he said?  What I think happened in 2016 and all of the events surrounding the 2016 campaign and the spying that took place on me and Michael Flynn and others was tantamount to treason. What happened was there was an intelligence agency with an ax to grind with candidate Trump and obviously President Trump, where we see the Russia hoax now evolving into Ukraine-gate. This is not going to stop. I predicted that Joseph Mifsud, that individual who now both of his Blackberries are now in the hands of the DOJ was a Western Intelligence agent. I wrote about it in my book exactly how I came in contact with this person who introduced me to him and what he wanted. Something I did not know and actually something that surprised me very much is that Joseph Mifsud was also spying on Michael Flynn just two months before he started his encounters with me… I joined the Donald Trump campaign in March of 2016. Before even the Washington Post or the American media knew that I was joining this campaign I had Joseph Mifsud and other intelligence agencies knowing all about me, what I was doing and what Donald Trump’s campaign was all about. So the notion that this investigation, Crossfire Hurricane, started spontaneously on July 31st 2016 is absurd. It’s completely absurd.

This is an extremely complex story which involves an enormous number of people. Durham’s team has been working on it formally since May. However, there were indications that he was actually on it several weeks or even months prior. If I recall correctly, Durham appeared at one or two Congressional hearings to listen to the testimony of former FBI officials.

In addition to the involvement of the British and Italian intelligence communities, there is reason to believe that Australian intelligence officials participated in the conspiracy. We need only look to Australian diplomat Alexander Downer’s May 2016 meeting with George Papadopoulos at a London bar where the Trump campaign’s newest advisor told him the Russians had dirt on Hillary Clinton. The FBI claims it was this event which triggered their counterintelligence investigation of Donald Trump.

Following Clapper’s lengthy trip to New Zealand and Australia in the late spring, Papadopoulos hinted he may have traveled there to cover his tracks. He posted the following tweet.

It looks like Trump is about to fight back. Fasten your seatbelts everybody!

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Shamed Parkland Sheriff Scott Israel Voted Out by Florida Senate Despite Democrat’s Fight to Keep Him

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National Rifle Association spokesperson Dana Loesch answers a question while sitting next to Broward Sheriff Scott Israel during a CNN town hall meeting, Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2018, at the BB&T Center, in Sunrise, Fla. (Michael Laughlin/South Florida Sun-Sentinel via AP)

After the Parkland shooting which claimed the lives of many innocent high school students and teachers, Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel sat on a stage next to radio show host and Second Amendment advocate Dana Loesch and proceed to blame her and the National Rifle Association for everything that happened on that fateful day.

The truth was later revealed that it was Israel and his department’s incompetence and failure to act on many occasions both before and while the shooting was occurring that was the real people at fault for the atrocity. He was suspended and Florida lawmakers began the long process of deciding if he should be kicked to the curb.

According to the Sun-Sentinal, the Florida Senate did just that, but it definitely wasn’t a unanimous vote. It would appear that despite Israel’s apparent blunders, Democrats wanted to keep him in office:

The 25-15 vote was mostly along party lines with Republicans, who are a majority in the Senate and loyal to the Republican governor, generally supporting removal while most Democrats voted to reinstate the Democratic sheriff. All five Broward senators voted for reinstatement, despite the wishes of Parkland parents.

“I can stand here and I can tell you how I empathize with the Parkland parents,” said Democrat Sen. Perry Thurston said. “I’m not disregarding them. None of us would.”

Thurstan added that “95% of Broward County feels differently about the attempt to remove the sheriff.” It’s unclear where he got that number.

“We are tasked between deciding about how we feel and the dangerous precedent we leave behind,” said Democrat Sen. Kevin Rader.

According to the Sun-Sentinal, the “high standard for proof for removal had not been met” according to Rader.

Democrat Sen. Gary Farmer believed that Parkland parents and Republicans were being ruled by emotion and not rationality when it came to their desire to see Israel gone.

“Because of the horrendous and ghastly nature of that event, it’s easy to be moved by the emotion and the pleas of the parents who are still grieving and who forever will be grieving for the loss of their children,” Farmer said. “We are a country founded on rule of law. We cannot base our decision on emotion.”

Israel himself also believed that reason didn’t win the day.

“Politics won,” he told the Sun-Sentinal, adding that the “process was as a sham. It was a farce.”

Dana Loesch, whom Israel used as a scapegoat while on the infamous CNN Townhall that followed the Parkland shooting, told RedState that this is a fitting outcome for Israel.

“Scott Israel thinks he’s the victim and that his job was “stolen.” The lives of 17 innocent people were what was stolen,” Loesch told RedState. “He isn’t the victim here — the people he failed to protect are the victims. It’s why the families and his own deputies stood against him. No amount of his thuggish bullying will change that and I’ll be there at his every step to call him out every single time.”

Kyle Kashuv, one of the Parkland students who survived the shooting, told RedState that this was a just end to Israel’s career, and thanked the Parkland families who did lose family members for helping bring it about.

“Thanks to the tireless work of Andrew Pollack, Ryan Petty and the Parkland families, Scott Israel finally got some semblance of the justice he deserved for his deep corruption and incompetence that enabled the tragedy at my school,” Kashuv told RedState.

Kashuv also applauded the Republicans who voted to remove Israel from office and slammed the Democrats who defended him.

“Good on those in the Florida Senate who voted for his removal, and it’s an absolute shame on those who voted against. I cannot thank Governor DeSantis enough for continuing to stand by his promises to Parkland and the Parkland families,” he added.

Israel seems to believe that he’s going to retake his office during an election in 2020, but judging by the number of people who have turned against him after the truth about the shooting came out, especially the Parkland parents and students, it’s unlikely he’ll see office again.

The post Shamed Parkland Sheriff Scott Israel Voted Out by Florida Senate Despite Democrat’s Fight to Keep Him appeared first on RedState.

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