Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#201

Post by Azastan » Mon Jan 29, 2018 5:29 pm

Trump warned Sessions and others they need to excel at their jobs or go down as the worst in history, the two people said.
:rotflmao:

That's some gall he's got.



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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#202

Post by Addie » Mon Jan 29, 2018 5:30 pm

The Hill
Nunes reviewed classified memo with FBI director: report

FBI Director Christopher Wray met with House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) to view Nunes' classified memo alleging that the Department of Justice abused a surveillance program, Politico reported Monday.

The two men met to review the document on Sunday, after Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) lobbied Nunes to share the memo with Wray and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, according to Politico. Rosenstein has not viewed the document.

The GOP lawmaker told Wray to flag any information in the memo that was incorrect, could lead to national security issues or risk FBI sources, according to Politico.

The reported meeting came after several Republican lawmakers called for the FBI to view the memo.

The House Intelligence Committee is expected to vote to make the memo public on Monday night.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#203

Post by RVInit » Mon Jan 29, 2018 5:37 pm

Chilidog wrote:
Mon Jan 29, 2018 5:29 pm
Trump is doing one thing. He is getting a lot of LEO'S to seriously reconsider voting GOP.
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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#204

Post by Addie » Mon Jan 29, 2018 5:43 pm

The Atlantic
The Mystery of Andrew McCabe's Exit ...

Assuming both that the White House didn’t deliver the final push now, and that Wray refused to fire McCabe before, what changed to produce his departure?

Fox News reports McCabe was instructed to begin terminal leave in advance of a report from the Justice Department’s inspector general. In January 2017, the inspector general launched an inquiry into several areas: whether Comey ignored DOJ guidelines in making public pronouncements about the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email server; whether McCabe should have been recused from the Clinton investigation; whether another DOJ employee should have been recused or gave information to the Clinton campaign; whether DOJ employees leaked information; and whether tweets containing documents about the Clintons shortly before the campaign were improper. The IG’s investigation has not yet become public. ...

People who have seen the Nunes memo say that it is scathing about top FBI leadership, and since Comey is already gone, it’s a decent guess that might mean McCabe. But the memo itself is suspect, and critics say it’s full of cherry-picked information. The DOJ has also argued against releasing it. It seems unlikely, though not impossible, that Wray would have been swayed by the contents of the memo into pushing McCabe out.

The problem in all of this is that it’s impossible to know who to believe. Nunes no longer deserves the benefit of the doubt. McCabe and Wray aren’t talking. Most of all, it is impossible to fully trust anything the executive branch says about personnel moves, thanks to the way the firing of James Comey was handled. At the time, the Justice Department released a memo from Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein laying out a detailed critique of Comey’s handling of the Clinton investigation, together with a letter from Sessions endorsing it. Yet within days of that letter, Trump himself had made clear in an interview with NBC News’ Lester Holt that he had fired Comey not over the Clinton probe but over the Russia inquiry.

The nation is likely to get more information about McCabe’s exit in the coming hours and days, but official answers on this deserve even more than the usual dose of skepticism. Having lied to the public once, the Trump administration’s explanations for any further moves are automatically suspect.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#205

Post by Addie » Mon Jan 29, 2018 6:07 pm

The Atlantic - Natasha Bertrand
The Circumscribed Ethics Investigation Into Devin Nunes

The House Intelligence Committee chair claimed he’d been completely cleared, but the panel probing his conduct never gained access to the intelligence he was accused of divulging.

Early last April, the House Ethics Committee opened an investigation into whether the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Devin Nunes, broke rules governing the public disclosure of classified information when he told reporters that he had obtained details about “American intelligence monitoring foreign officials” who may have “incidentally picked up communications of Trump transition team members.”

Eight months later, after seeking an analysis of Nunes’s statements by classification experts in the intelligence community, the Ethics Committee closed the case. Nunes thanked the committee for “completely clearing” him, and said it had found he “committed no violation.”

But the committee was never able to obtain or review the classified information at the heart of the inquiry, according to three congressional sources briefed on the investigation who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the press. The panel’s inability to determine for itself what may or may not have been classified—and what Nunes had actually been shown—likely contributed to its decision to close the investigation, according to one source.

Those restrictions cast doubt on whether the committee was able to authoritatively compare Nunes’s statements to the press with what he had read in the classified intelligence reports. That, in turn, calls into question the thoroughness of the committee’s investigation, and the accuracy of Nunes’s claims of vindication. A spokesman for the Ethics Committee declined to comment. A spokesman for Nunes did not immediately respond.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#206

Post by Lani » Mon Jan 29, 2018 6:57 pm

Another whack of the hatchet on FBI independence: http://www.latimes.com/politics/la-na-p ... story.html
The latest step came on Monday night when the House Intelligence Committee voted to release a classified memo which Republican members insist shows improper surveillance of Trump's campaign. Democrats dissented, accusing their Republican colleagues of skewing the facts to undermine the Russia case.

Justice Department officials have objected in unusually strong language to making public the four-page document, which was prepared by intelligence committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-Tulare), and is based on classified information. The White House could block its release, but Trump has already indicated his interest in making it public, a sign that he believes it could give him legal or political leverage.
(cross-posted from Mueller investigation thread)


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#207

Post by Addie » Mon Jan 29, 2018 11:17 pm

CNN
House Intel Committee votes to release Nunes memo on FBI

Washington (CNN)The House Intelligence Committee voted along party lines Monday to publicly release a classified memo written by Republicans alleging FBI abuses in the agency's surveillance, an aggressive move that could feed a GOP push to undercut special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation and ratchets up a battle with the Justice Department.

The committee's vote to release the memo spearheaded by Chairman Devin Nunes means that the four-page classified document could be made public this week. But in another party-line vote, the committee voted against making a competing Democratic memo from Rep. Adam Schiff of California available as well.

The Nunes memo says the FBI abused the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act over its use of the opposition research dossier on Donald Trump and Russia as part of the case to obtain a FISA warrant for former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser Carter Page. It cites the roles of Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and outgoing Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe in overseeing aspects of the investigation, according to a source briefed on the matter.

Under an obscure committee rule to make the classified memo public, which has never been invoked in the panel's 40-plus-year history, the President now has five days following the vote to decide whether to allow the public release to move forward or object to it.

The House Intelligence Committee memo was couriered to the White House on Monday evening, according to spokesman Hogan Gidley, and will be reviewed.
The committee did vote to allow Schiff's memo to be viewed by all House members, the same step that was taken with the Nunes memo earlier this month. But the committee's Democrats -- who charge that the Nunes memo is skewed and is an effort to undercut Mueller's investigation -- say the vote was a political tactic.

"All that is a delaying tactic -- they want first shot for an independent period of time where the only thing anyone can see is their book report," said Rep. Mike Quigley, an Illinois Democrat. "What is added by the whole House reviewing it? None of them have seen the underlying materials, and none of them have had the year plus evaluation of reading all the documents elsewhere, interviewing everyone."


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#208

Post by Slim Cognito » Tue Jan 30, 2018 12:48 am

According to The Atlantic, Nunes wasn't so much "cleared" of wrongdoing by the Ethics Committee as they simply gave up after being unable to obtain any of the info they needed to investigate.
The Circumscribed Ethics Investigation Into Devin Nunes
The House Intelligence Committee chair claimed he’d been completely cleared, but the panel probing his conduct never gained access to the intelligence he was accused of divulging.

......
Eight months later, after seeking an analysis of Nunes’s statements by classification experts in the intelligence community, the Ethics Committee closed the case. Nunes thanked the committee for “completely clearing” him, and said it had found he “committed no violation.”

But the committee was never able to obtain or review the classified information at the heart of the inquiry, according to three congressional sources briefed on the investigation who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the press. The panel’s inability to determine for itself what may or may not have been classified—and what Nunes had actually been shown—likely contributed to its decision to close the investigation, according to one source."

https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/ar ... sy/551792/


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#209

Post by Addie » Tue Jan 30, 2018 10:02 am

Democraticleader.gov - Press Release
Pelosi Statement on the House Intelligence Committee Vote to Release Nunes Memo

Washington, D.C. – Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi released the following statement after House Intelligence Committee Republicans voted to publicly release a bogus, misleading memo, authored by Chairman Devin Nunes:

“Tonight, the House Republicans crossed from dangerous irresponsibility and disregard for our national security into the realm of cover up. In doing so, they disregarded the warnings of the Justice Department and the FBI.

“Chairman Nunes’ memo contains significant inaccuracies and omissions that misrepresent the underlying intelligence and jeopardize the effectiveness of our intelligence and law enforcement communities. Americans should be deeply concerned by Speaker Ryan’s sanctioning of this irresponsible decision and his complicity in allowing the Committee investigation to devolve into a sad political spectacle.

“President Trump must honor his responsibility as Commander-in-Chief and reject the reckless release of the Nunes memo.

“Republicans must cease their efforts to undermine Special Counsel Mueller’s investigation. House Republicans are engaged in a pattern of abdicating their constitutional responsibilities to the American people. Deliberately, the GOP refused to release the Democrats’ memo. Clearly, they are afraid of the truth.

“I commend Ranking Member Schiff and other Intelligence Committee Democrats for insisting that all documents be reviewed and appropriately redacted before being released. Democrats remain committed to ensuring that the integrity of the Special Counsel and Congressional investigations is not compromised by an unsubstantiated, partisan smear campaign.”


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#210

Post by Addie » Tue Jan 30, 2018 10:46 am

Salon - Digby
Trump’s game of thrones heats up: McCabe, Rosenstein and the “memo”

Generally speaking, in the days before a president's annual State of the Union address, the media turn themselves into psychics and fortune tellers, spending hours on end predicting what he's going to say and how the country is going to receive it while ignoring most other news. Once you see a speech "countdown clock" appear in the corner of the TV screen, you can be sure that the commentary will be exceedingly tedious until it runs out.

The White House usually tries to build excitement by leaking tidbits about the speech and the attendees and focusing attention on the president's agenda. Naturally, this White House has opted for chaos instead. Officials have made a tepid effort to claim that President Trump will "pivot" to a big bipartisan pitch, but at this point nobody believes a word he says, so a speech isn't going to get him anywhere. Anyway, the president and the House Republicans couldn't stop inappropriately meddling in the Russia investigation long enough to get through his big day, so the whole exercise was pointless.

As we know, Trump has been fighting the investigation from the beginning, aiming his ire both publicly and privately at top members of the FBI and the Department of Justice. He and his supporters in right-wing media have decided that these career law enforcement and counterintelligence officials eagerly helped Hillary Clinton evade justice for her myriad crimes and then attempted to wreak vengeance on Trump for being the greatest candidate ever and thwarting their nefarious plans by cooking up the bogus Russia scandal to make it look like he hadn't really won the election. This plan included intelligence agencies from a number of foreign countries and members of the mainstream media who have been peddling their fake news to advance the storyline.

In order to "prove" all this, they are throwing spaghetti at the walls, and this week at least one strand stuck. It was reported a few weeks ago that Andrew McCabe, the embattled deputy director of the FBI, was planning to retire. It was abruptly announced on Monday that he was leaving immediately. After the news last week that, at Trump's behest, Attorney General Jeff Sessions had been pressuring FBI Director Christopher Wray to "purge" the agency of McCabe and other top officials Trump believed were among the plotters -- and Wray was described as heroically threatening to quit if he didn't have total independence -- this came as a bit of a surprise. It's unclear what role Wray played in all this, but we know that he and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein both went to the White House on Monday.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#211

Post by RVInit » Tue Jan 30, 2018 10:59 am

https://www.justsecurity.org/51630/five ... mo-answer/
Five Questions the Nunes Memo Better Answer

The House Intelligence Committee has voted to release the Nunes Memo, which allegedly outlines widespread abuses by the DOJ and FBI in obtaining a surveillance order against former national security advisor to the Trump Campaign, Carter Page. As a former FBI agent who has been through the process of obtaining these kinds of warrants under the Foreign Surveillance Intelligence Act (FISA), I know that such an allegation, if true, would require a vast number of people – across two branches of government – to be on board and willing to put their careers on the line for a conspiracy. To that end, in advance of the memo being released, I want to highlight five questions that the Nunes Memo must clearly address in order for its allegations of abuse to be substantiated and credible.


1. When did the FBI open an investigation on Carter Page?

It’s important to understand that just because the FBI receives information (like the Steele Dossier), the Bureau cannot immediately run to a FISA court and obtain a warrant. A FISA warrant itself does not make a “case;” rather, it’s an investigative tool used in support of an existing national security case, one that normally would have been opened months, if not years, prior. In fact, FISA warrants can be approved only for what are called Full Investigations. These are the most serious class of investigations within the FBI and require an “articulable factual basis” to open: For counterintelligence cases on U.S. persons (USPERs), these cases involve facts demonstrating that the subject is in contact with and working on behalf of a foreign intelligence service. That means that, at some point prior to obtaining the FISA warrant, the FBI opened an investigation on Carter Page, obtained enough factual evidence to justify making it a Full Investigation, and would have done enough investigative activity to be able to put together a FISA application.

In fact, Page was already on the FBI’s radar as far back as 2013, when they obtained recordings of Russian foreign intelligence officials discussing targeting Page for recruitment. FBI officials at that time interviewed Page and warned him that he was being targeted – Page admitted that he had been in contact with these officers (not knowing they were Russian intelligence operatives) and has said that he shared “immaterial information and publicly available research documents” with the Russian spies. As former CIA officers and I have described, this would be consistent with the early stage of an intelligence recruitment process, and the FBI would have likely kept tabs on Russia’s efforts to see if they persisted and succeeded. There are even reports that Page was under FISA surveillance in 2014, which could have strengthened the basis for a new one in 2016 with renewed Russian interest in him. The Wall Street Journal reported that U.S. intelligence obtained intercepts as early as spring 2015 of Russians discussing “meetings held outside the U.S. involving Russian government officials and Trump business associates or advisers.” By the time Page joined the Trump campaign in 2016, the FBI would have had three years to monitor the recruitment process unfolding (Page continued his contacts with Russia through this time, and his unusual trip to Moscow in summer 2016 was no secret) – and this is the process the FBI would have outlined in its application to the FISA court in 2016 to demonstrate how and why Page was “engaging in clandestine intelligence activity on behalf of a foreign power” to obtain surveillance.
Edit: THE TAKEAWAY: If the Nunes Memo does not indicate when the investigation underlying the Page FISA application was opened or how many months/years of investigative activity preceding the dossier is detailed in the Page FISA application, it is not telling a sufficiently complete or accurate story.
way more. Here is the link again

https://www.justsecurity.org/51630/five ... mo-answer/


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#212

Post by TexasFilly » Tue Jan 30, 2018 11:37 am

That's a very important article, RVI. I heard some of the points addressed by Maddow and Clint Watts yesterday. But, it's lots of explaining, and I fear that the Nunes Propaganda will be taken at face value, magnified by the RW media.

I think the renewals of the FISA warrant are of critical import. It's my understanding that renewal applications require proof that the FISA warrant is bearing fruit. I'm sure that won't be in the Nunes Memo either.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#213

Post by neeneko » Tue Jan 30, 2018 11:46 am

TexasFilly wrote:
Tue Jan 30, 2018 11:37 am
That's a very important article, RVI. I heard some of the points addressed by Maddow and Clint Watts yesterday. But, it's lots of explaining, and I fear that the Nunes Propaganda will be taken at face value, magnified by the RW media.
Kinda sounds like this is all it is designed to do. It only has to be complete enough to convince laymen who already are against the investigation, a pretty low bar.



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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#214

Post by RVInit » Tue Jan 30, 2018 11:49 am

TexasFilly wrote:
Tue Jan 30, 2018 11:37 am
That's a very important article, RVI. I heard some of the points addressed by Maddow and Clint Watts yesterday. But, it's lots of explaining, and I fear that the Nunes Propaganda will be taken at face value, magnified by the RW media.

I think the renewals of the FISA warrant are of critical import. It's my understanding that renewal applications require proof that the FISA warrant is bearing fruit. I'm sure that won't be in the Nunes Memo either.
I hope everyone will take the time to read it, it is very enlightening. I'm sure I will read it several times so it will really sink in.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#215

Post by Addie » Tue Jan 30, 2018 12:01 pm

The Atlantic - Natasha Bertrand
The Men Behind the Nunes Memo ...

Nunes has been conducting a parallel investigation into the FBI and the Justice Department since March 2017, when he first began examining whether top officials improperly “unmasked” and then leaked the names of Trump associates who surfaced in intelligence reports during the transition period. Nunes did not write the three-and-a-half-page memo outlining the initial findings of that investigation—which is ongoing—by himself, however.

Two sources familiar with the matter told me that much of the heavy lifting was done by Kash Patel, a top Nunes staffer and senior committee counsel. Patel previously attracted media attention by traveling to London late last summer—without the knowledge of the U.S. embassy or British government—along with committee staffer Doug Presley in search of Christopher Steele, author of a controversial dossier on Trump. ...

Boyd’s letter to Nunes referred to the document as “a staff-drafted memorandum that purports to be based on classified source materials that neither you nor most of them have seen.”

A separate congressional source confirmed that Patel helped write the Nunes memo.

The committee’s staff director, Damon Nelson, also contributed to the memo, the source told me, adding that Nelson is extremely close to Nunes. Nelson served as Nunes’s deputy chief of staff for 11 years, between 2003 until 2014. A congressional official told The Guardian last August that Nelson was involved in the decision to send Patel and Presley to London. Another former Nunes staffer who now works for the committee, Andrew House, also worked closely with Nelson on the memo, the source added.

The Nunes memo is not Patel’s first foray into the FISA and unmasking controversy that was drummed up by his boss back in March 2017. Patel circulated an internal memo last November urging Nunes to hold top officials at the Justice Department and the FBI in contempt of Congress for failing to turn over documents related to the Obama administration’s alleged use of the dossier to surveil Trump associates during the transition period, one of the sources told me. That memo was first reported by Fox News in November.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#216

Post by Turtle » Tue Jan 30, 2018 12:16 pm




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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#217

Post by MN-Skeptic » Tue Jan 30, 2018 2:34 pm

www.nunesmemo.com redirects to Democrat Andrew Janz's campaign's page. Janz is the Democratic challenger to Devin Nunes. :lol:


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#218

Post by RVInit » Tue Jan 30, 2018 2:39 pm

MN-Skeptic wrote:
Tue Jan 30, 2018 2:34 pm
www.nunesmemo.com redirects to Democrat Andrew Janz's campaign's page. Janz is the Democratic challenger to Devin Nunes. :lol:
:rotflmao:


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#219

Post by Addie » Tue Jan 30, 2018 2:48 pm

NBC News - Howard Fineman
The ‘state’ of Donald Trump? He thinks it couldn’t be better. ...

Sources say that Trump has adopted a two-track strategy to deal with the Mueller investigation.

One is an un-Trumpian passivity and trust. He keeps telling some in his circle that Mueller — any day now — will tell him he is off the hook for any charge of collusion with the Russians or obstruction of justice.

But Trump — who trusts no one, or at least no one for long — has now decided that he must have an alternative strategy that does not involve having Justice Department officials fire Mueller.

"I think he's been convinced that firing Mueller would not only create a firestorm, it would play right into Mueller's hands," said another friend, "because it would give Mueller the moral high ground."

Instead, as is now becoming plain, the Trump strategy is to discredit the investigation and the FBI without officially removing the leadership. Trump is even talking to friends about the possibility of asking Attorney General Jeff Sessions to consider prosecuting Mueller and his team.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#220

Post by Addie » Tue Jan 30, 2018 2:55 pm

Lawfare - Jack Goldsmith: Independence and Accountability at the Department of Justice


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#221

Post by Addie » Tue Jan 30, 2018 2:59 pm

The Hill
Ryan calls for a 'cleanse' of the FBI

Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) on Tuesday threw his support behind releasing a controversial memo that purports to detail FBI surveillance activity, saying it will “cleanse” the organization, Fox News reported.

“Let it all out, get it all out there. Cleanse the organization,” Ryan said, according to Fox.

“I think we should disclose all this stuff. It’s the best disinfectant. Accountability, transparency — for the sake of the reputation of our institutions,” he added.

Ryan reportedly made the remarks at a largely off-the-record session with anchors and reporters ahead of President Trump's State of the Union address on Tuesday night. Ryan went on the record to address the release of the House Intelligence Committee memo.

Still, the Speaker urged Republican lawmakers during a Tuesday morning meeting not to overstate the facts in the memo, and not to use the document's contents to try to undermine special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#222

Post by fierceredpanda » Tue Jan 30, 2018 3:11 pm

"Cleanse" the FBI? Jesus fucking Christ. Paul Ryan is now channeling his inner Josef Stalin.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#223

Post by Addie » Tue Jan 30, 2018 4:03 pm

Daily Beast
House Republicans Use New FBI Investigation To Ignore FBI Concerns About Nunes Memo

House intelligence committee Republicans have a new, secretive investigation into the FBI—and they’re using it to justify freezing out the bureau from the release of a memo accusing it of abusing its power, The Daily Beast has learned.

The memo mentions Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, as well as Andrew McCabe and James Comey—formerly the FBI’s two most powerful officials—as The Daily Beast reported last week. Monday night, committee Republicans voted against giving the FBI more of a voice on the memo’s release, citing their own investigation into the bureau.

During the meeting Rep. Mike Quigley of Illinois moved to give the FBI more time to discuss the memo’s allegations with the committee—as well as any concerns about its release—before making the memo public, according to Quigley and Rep. Jim Himes, a top committee Democrat. Republicans blocked the motion. Another source familiar with the meeting shared the same account.

When a Democrat on the committee asked why Republicans opposed granting the FBI this courtesy, Devin Nunes, the committee’s Republican chairman and a staunch ally of President Donald Trump, gave an answer some found surprising, Himes told The Daily Beast. Nunes said he opposed giving the FBI more time to discuss the memo with the committee because the FBI itself, as well as the Justice Department, is under investigation, according to all three sources.


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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#224

Post by Lunaluz » Tue Jan 30, 2018 6:38 pm

Jim Wright's view on the "Memo", and it isn't good.

http://www.stonekettle.com/2018/01/dirty-tricks.html

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Re: Congressional Committees: Re FBI's Independence

#225

Post by RVInit » Tue Jan 30, 2018 7:34 pm

Trump is of the opinion that "The Memo" should be released because it's the same BS we've already seen from Nunes before, and just like the first time he pulled this kind of crap, he took orders on having it written directly from the White House is my guess. So, yeah, considering that Nunes probably took directions from the WH to have it written is exactly why the WH has the opinion it should be released even before they "read it".


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