Tag Archives: Michael Horowitz

The Real ‘Bombshells’ Are About to Hit Their Targets, by Julie Kelly

Let’s see if Inspector General Michael Horowitz actually drops some bombs. From Julie Kelly at amgreatness.com:

The next bombshell report to drop from the Justice Department likely will earn none of the breathless fanfare and media coverage that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report received, but it could be far more incriminating.

In the next several weeks, Inspector General Michael Horowitz is expected to issue his summation of the potential abuse of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act by top officials in the Obama Administration and holdovers in the early Trump Administration who were overseeing the investigation of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign.

And the perpetrators of the so-called FISAgate scandal now are scrambling for cover as the bad news looms.

Horowitz announced last March that his office would examine the Justice Department’s conduct “in applications filed with the U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) relating to a certain U.S. person.” That U.S. person is Trump campaign associate Carter Page. In October 2016, just two weeks before the presidential election, the Justice Department submitted an application to the FISC seeking authorization to wiretap Page. The court filing accused Page, a Naval Academy graduate and unpaid campaign advisor, of being an agent of Russia.

Continue reading

Advertisements

Real Takeaway: The FBI Influenced the Election of a President, by Peter Van Buren

Peter Van Buren identifies the most important conclusion to emerge from Michael Horowitz’s report. From Van Buren at theamericanconservative.com:

It will be easy to miss the most important point amid the partisan bleating over what the Department of Justice Office of Inspector General report on the FBI’s Clinton email investigation really means.

While each side will find the evidence they want to find proving the FBI, with James Comey as director, helped/hurt Hillary Clinton and/or maybe Donald Trump, the real takeaway is this: the FBI influenced the election of a president.

In January 2017 the Inspector General for the Department of Justice, Michael Horowitz (who previously worked on the 2012 study of “Fast and Furious”), opened his probe into the FBI’s Clinton email investigation, including public statements Comey made at critical moments in the presidential campaign. Horowitz’s focus was always to be on how the FBI did its work, not to re-litigate the case against Clinton. Nor did the IG plan to look into anything regarding Russiagate.

In a damning passage, the 568 page report found it “extraordinary and insubordinate for Comey to conceal his intentions from his superiors… for the admitted purpose of preventing them from telling him not to make the statement, and to instruct his subordinates in the FBI to do the same. By departing so clearly and dramatically from FBI and department norms, the decisions negatively impacted the perception of the FBI and the department as fair administrators of justice.” Comey’s drafting of a press release announcing no prosecution for Clinton, written before the full investigation was even completed, is given a light touch though in the report, along the lines of roughly preparing for the conclusion based on early indications.

Attorney General Loretta Lynch is criticized for not being more sensitive to public perceptions when she agreed to meet privately with Bill Clinton aboard an airplane as the FBI investigation into Hillary unfolded. “Lynch’s failure to recognize the appearance problem… and to take action to cut the visit short was an error in judgment.” Her statements later about her decision not to recuse further “created public confusion and didn’t adequately address the situation.”

The report also criticizes in depth FBI agents Peter Strzok and Lisa Page, who exchanged texts disparaging Trump before moving from the Clinton email to the Russiagate investigation. Those texts “brought discredit” to the FBI and sowed public doubt about the investigation, including one exchange that read, “Page: “[Trump’s] not ever going to become president, right? Strzok: “No. No he’s not. We’ll stop it.” Another Strzok document stated “we know foreign actors obtained access to some Clinton emails, including at least one secret message.”

To continue reading: Real Takeaway: The FBI Influenced the Election of a President

Washed, Bleached and Rinsed, by James Kunstler

James Kunstler saves SLL the trouble of having to write about the Inspector General’s report. From Kunstler at kunstler.com:

The FBI brass must have needed hazmat suits to scrub DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s report on agency misconduct around the 2016 elections. The result of their mighty exertions is something like 500 pages of pasteurized tofu. I will be surprised if a new scandal does not erupt over exactly how the scrubbing went down, and I wouldn’t count out the possibility of the original unscrubbed report emerging from deep inside the FBI itself. You have to wonder how embarrassed Mr. Horowitz is, and whether he, or others seeking to defend his integrity, might do anything about it.

In any case, the report managed to whitewash or evade altogether the most troubling angles of the FBI’s role around this garbage barge of institutional roguery. Among unanswered questions: just what were Bill Clinton and then Attorney General Loretta Lynch up to in their mysterious airport tête-à-tête July 2016, a few days before then FBI Director James Comey let Mr. Clinton’s wife, a presidential candidate, off the hook on the email server issue? How did Deputy FBI Director Andy McCabe consort with Clinton campaign bag-man and then Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe in a way that dropped nearly $700,000 into Mrs. McCabe’s own campaign war chest for a state legislative race? How did the wife of FBI higher-up Bruce Ohr get on the payroll of the Fusion GPS company that brokered the nefarious Christopher Steele “dossier?” How did the FBI conceal the Clinton campaign’s payments for the Steele dossier from judges who ruled on FISA warrants against Trump campaign associates?

Instead, the OIG report focused on the now-shopworn “love-bird” emails between FBI counter-espionage chief Peter Strzok and FBI lawyer Lisa Page, finding only a vague “biased state of mind,” but nothing tied to any particular actions taken by them, despite overt declarations of intent by Strzok to “stop” Trump, presumably by using the powers of the FBI. Former FBI Director Comey got off with the equivalent of a wrist-slap on vague allegations of “insubordination” — to whom? What did insubordination have to do with Comey granting immunity to many Clinton campaign factotums before Mrs. Clinton was interviewed by the agency (not under oath, by the way, for reasons never advanced nor discussed in mainstream media).

If this is the end of all these matters then the FBI will remain permanently tarnished and the public interest will have been very poorly served by a tractable Inspector General who is sure to be a national joke in the months ahead — the pooch screwed by his own pack. The USA really can’t take a whole lot more institutional failure without irreparable political damage. Americans will become only more distrustful of our reckless leviathan state, and more inclined to disrespect it.

To continue reading: Washed, Bleached and Rinsed