AG Barr wants a ‘clean’ FISA reauthorization because he won’t abuse it

 

Let me be blunt. I am no fan of AG Barr. He doesn’t think he can do his job with Trump’s tweeting? Now he thinks we should trust him with FISA and make no changes? Keep it the same until 2022? We are suppose to have faith in him? Who is to say if he will be in that position, who says what the Congress will look like and who knows if Trump will be President.

We got to see his true colors of being a total swamp creature in an earlier post this month. Trump’s tweet, Barr’s response and failed Jessie Liu – the intersect

The long and the short of the previous post and a winding tale to be told was Barr’s support of a high level swamp creature and was her champion from day one. Barr wanted Liu for the top job at Treasury. Even though the Senate failed to confirm her earlier for a different position.

Why did Barr ever think Jessie Liu was worth promoting to a critical role in treasury? and worse to the DOJ #3 post before that. As soon as Barr was confirmed as AG he was her champion. She was involved with Mueller including the Stone and McCabe cases.

Check this:  Via NBC) […]

The former U.S. attorney whose office oversaw the Roger Stone prosecution resigned from the Trump administration Wednesday, two days after President Donald Trump abruptly withdrew her nomination for a top job at the Treasury Department.

But enough of that grade B novel. Check it out if you have the time. I digress.

Now back to the latest Barr fiasco.

In November of 2019 buried deep in the congressional budget Continuing Resolution (CR) was a short-term extension to reauthorize the FISA “business records provision”, the “roving wiretap” provision, the “lone wolf” provision, and the more controversial bulk metadata provisions [Call Detail Records (CDR)], all parts of the Patriot Act.  As a result of the FISA CR inclusion the terminal deadline was pushed to March 15, 2020:

WASHINGTON – Attorney General William Barr told Senate Republicans on Tuesday that the Trump administration could support a clean extension of contentious surveillance laws set to expire next month. And Barr said he could make changes on his own to satisfy President Donald Trump and his allies who have railed against the use of the law to monitor his 2016 campaign, according to senators at a party briefing.

But Barr also clashed with GOP critics of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which has three key provisions set to lapse on March 15.

[…] Republicans emerged from the lunch meeting mostly supportive of a clean extension of the law to avoid a gap; doing so is a top priority of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).

“The attorney general just wanted to underscore again the importance of these provisions that were enacted in the wake of the 9/11 attack. They’re still relevant to our effort to go after terrorists today like they were after 9/11,” McConnell told reporters.

But Barr also sparred with skeptics, primarily libertarian-leaning Sens. Mike Lee of Utah and Rand Paul of Kentucky, according to two people familiar with the meeting. Barr told Lee his criticisms of surveillance law are dangerous, while Paul said Americans shouldn’t be subject to secret FISA courts, one of the people said.

[…] Senate Republicans prefer kicking a broad FISA debate to as late as 2022, when other pieces of the law expire. In the interim, Barr would make administrative changes to address complaints from conservatives that surveillance authorities were abused during Trump’s campaign — something the president continues to seethe over.

“You’ve got three provisions to deal with. I think it’d be smart to keep them in place. It would give us some time to work on FISA writ large, we’ve got three years,” said Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), who is preparing hearings on FISA.

[…] “A lot will happen between now and March 15. We may do a placeholder and take it past March 15. We’ve got to get this right,” said Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.). “Anybody who reads the Horowitz report on misfire hurricane will understand what I’m talking about.” (read more)

Prior to the December 9, 2019, inspector general report on FISA abuse, FISA Court judges Rosemary Collyer (declassified 2017) and James Boasberg (declassified 2019) both identified issues with the NSA bulk database collection program being exploited for unauthorized reasons. For the past several years no corrective action taken by the intelligence community has improved the abuses outlined by the FISA court.

The sketchy programs, and abuse therein, has public attention yet congressional representatives are not responding to the findings.

H./T: Conservative Tree House

A pretty damning clip knowing what we know now. Of course he slid through his confirmation hearing.

 

Check out the earlier post Trump’s tweet, Barr’s response and failed Jessie Liu – the intersect

 

Other than that, all is well in the swamp.

White House lawyer writes scathing letter to DOJ – ‘A Law School Exam Paper’

 

The letter submitted by a Emmet Flood, Trump’s WH Attorney to the DOJ is well worth the read. Anyone who has been waiting for the screw to turn the opposite direction will find some comfort that the adults are now in control of salvaging the defense of Trump.

There is no question that Trump’s first legal team took a naive approach with Mueller. In fact they allowed Mueller unfettered access to his Chief of Staff and Legal Consul when Trump could easily have claimed Executive privilege for these two without much blow back and is causing most of the ruckus at this moment with statements they made to Mueller’s team.

See my earlier post Trump’s legal team’s epic fail – meet John Dowd

September 7, 2018.

We had the good fortune of hearing the setup this past week when Hannity dragged John Dowd out from under a rock to explain his thinking. Dowd thought he could trust Mueller and had a handshake on it? He’s disappointed?

I can’t say he is in much better shape with media hog Rudy, who never let a minute go without being noticed.

John Dowd, who has urged the President to cooperate with special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe and resist attacking him publicly, resigned as his disagreements with Trump intensified and the President stepped up his attacks on the special counsel. His departure raises questions about the direction of Trump’s legal strategy and could signal a more aggressive posture on Trump’s part. (You think??) H/t: CNN

 

 

Now the update with WH Emmet Flood’s letter to the DOJ. Do take the time to read the excellent writing by Flood. Link embedded below:

In a five-page letter, a top White House lawyer argued that Trump should be able to stop officials from talking to Congress about the report.

A top White House lawyer slammed Robert Mueller in a letter made public Thursday, calling out the special counsel for playing politics by submitting findings to Attorney General William Barr that are “part ‘truth commission’ report and part law school exam paper.”

Emmet Flood’s blistering rebuke of Mueller’s work came in a five-page letter to Barr dated April 19, one day after the public release of a redacted version of the special counsel’s report that detailed President Donald Trump’s efforts to interfere in the Russia probe but declined to make a determination on whether Trump obstructed justice.

The missive is the latest salvo in a long-running spat between the White House and the special counsel’s office over what information Mueller’s team should be allowed to release — and what Congress should see. It argues that Trump should be able to stop officials from talking to lawmakers about the report’s findings and attempts to justify the White House refusal to comply with congressional subpoenas seeking further information about instances described in the report.

Read more

Peter Strzok is Facing Serious Charges

 

Strzok Facing Serious Charges

by Mustang

Peter Strzok

At least, this is what Sara Carter is telling us on her news blog. Under the microscope is Strzok’s behavior in the FBI’s probe of Hillary Clinton’s use of a private server to send classified e-mails and the counter-intelligence investigation into President Trump’s political campaign.

Apparently, this new concern comes from an investigation by DOJ Inspector general Michael Horowitz, which alleges malfeasance by FBI and DOJ officials who were involved in the Russia-Russia-Russia probe. When will we know for sure? Maybe by the last of June. The wheels of justice are slow (and hopefully, deliberately thorough).

I’m not holding my breath. An investigation is generally started whenever there is probable cause to open one—but “probable cause” is an extremely low bar. Here is the legal definition and explanation:

Probable Cause are facts discovered through logical inquiry that would lead a reasonably intelligent and prudent person to believe that an accused or suspected person has committed a crime and that such facts suggest that the accused warrants further investigation or prosecution.

Reasonable belief must be based on easily articulated and sufficiently available facts that would lead a reasonable person to believe that the accusations or chargers are true. In criminal law, probable cause is used as a basis for searching and seizing evidence of wrongdoing and the arrest of persons and depriving them of their civil liberty. In the absence of probable cause, then any seizure of material or arrest of persons may later be regarded as malicious prosecution.

So according to Carter, the current inquiry goes to the issue of what Strzok knew and how he knew it. If the basis for opening a criminal or counter-intelligence investigation was the Steele Dossier, and if Strzok knew that the dossier was manufactured by the Clinton Campaign, and knowing this, proceeded anyway, then I would say that Strzok could be in trouble. According to Carter’s source:

“There are a number of individuals who are looking at Peter Strzok’s actions and inactions and how those actions affected both of the investigations he was involved in,” said a U.S. official, with knowledge. “Further evaluation of what Peter Strzok did or did not do needs to be evaluated thoroughly.”

I remain skeptical. We have now witnessed several years of investigations by congressional committees. These are political, not criminal inquiries. I’m not sure “we the people” benefit from this overload of information. Nevertheless, as I previously said, the wheels of justice are slow. Thanks to the Democratic Party, the RINO-wing of the GOP, and operatives like George Soros, most Americans no longer have confidence in our most important institutions.

It is heartening to see that finally, there are demonstrations that America’s laws do apply to everyone. Attorney General William Barr is a careful and deliberate man and I do have confidence that he will make an in-depth inquiry into US spying against an American presidential candidate. Still, even with that said, Hillary Clinton has not been fitted for an orange jumpsuit and she, after all, was behind this entire affair.

In this sense, Strzok was a useful idiot and more than likely, “small potatoes” in the overall scheme of things. If he did bad things for political purposes, then he must answer for it. My problem is one of confidence. Whatever does happen to Strzok may very well depend on whether he ends up standing before an impartial judge, or another Obama hack.

 

Mustang has other great reads over at his two blogs – Thoughts from Afar

with Old West Tales and Fix Bayonets

Thanks to WhatFingerNews for the coverage! A great site for all the news.

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