President Donald Trump said on Sunday he intends to direct the Department of Justice to investigate whether his 2016 presidential campaign was “infiltrated” or surveilled” by the government under the orders of officials in the administration of his predecessor, Barack Obama.
Hours later, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein asked the Justice Department to step in, according to reports. Rosenstein asked the department’s inspector general to expand its review of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to include whether there were any political motivations in the FBI’s surveillance during the 2016 campaign.
“If anyone did infiltrate or surveil participants in a presidential campaign for inappropriate purposes, we need to know about it and take appropriate action,” Rosenstein said in a statement.
Trump’s demand potentially sets up a high-stakes showdown with Attorney General Jeff Sessions and FBI Director Christopher Wray, who have resisted requests from Republican lawmakers to hand over some documents related to special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russia’s meddling in the 2016 election.
I hereby demand, and will do so officially tomorrow, that the Department of Justice look into whether or not the FBI/DOJ infiltrated or surveilled the Trump Campaign for Political Purposes – and if any such demands or requests were made by people within the Obama Administration!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 20, 2018
Last week, three GOP congressmen wrote to Trump asking him to intervene and order DOJ to produce documents “related to potential abuses of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act; documents related to the FBI and broader Department of Justice’s initial investigation into the Trump campaign prior to the appointment of the Special Counsel.”
The extraordinary presidential request wading into a federal investigation being conducted by his own government comes in the wake of a bombshell New York Times story about Donald Trump Jr., the president’s eldest son, and his August 2016 meeting with an envoy representing the crown princes of United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia. The envoy offered to help the Trump presidential campaign, according to the Times ― similar to the Russian lawyer who met with Trump Jr. two months earlier under the guise of providing what the Trump campaign believed was damaging information about Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.
FBI agents at the time sent an unnamed informant to talk to two Trump campaign advisers “only after they received evidence that the pair had suspicious contacts linked to Russia during the campaign,” according to the Times. The government also obtained a secret warrant in October 2016 to monitor former Trump campaign aide Carter Page’s communications after convincing a judge it was appropriate to that investigation.
But Trump, egged on by conservative media outlets and Fox News commentators, lashed out at the FBI, accusing the agency of spying on his campaign for “political purposes.”
“Reports are there was indeed at least one FBI representative implanted, for political purposes, into my campaign for president. It took place very early on, and long before the phony Russia Hoax became a ‘hot’ Fake News story. If true ― all time biggest political scandal!” he tweeted Friday.
That last line parrots assertions that Fox News’ Sean Hannity has been making for months.
As GOP lawmakers have pressed their demand to see DOJ documents about the identity of the FBI informant, reportedly an American academic who teaches in Britain, critics of the move have warned against the release of such information to Congress ― where details of federal investigations often leak. Havng the name become public could put lives at risk, these critics caution.
Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.), the top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, said that it was against the law to “try to reveal classified information about the identity of an FBI or CIA source.”
“Classified information, [the] identity of agents, is sacrosanct,” Warner said Sunday on CBS’s “Face the Nation.”
He added that the FBI and Justice Department “have tried to avoid [giving lawmakers details on informants] because that’s just not the way they operate.” Providing such information is “not traditional in any sense of the word,” he added.
Other Democrats have scoffed at the claims of a “spy” within the Trump campaign. Rep. Adam Schiff of California, the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, termed the assertion “nonsense” in a tweet on Sunday.
Benjamin Wittes, whom former FBI Director James Comey showed memos of his meetings with Trump, wrote in a series of tweets that the president’s push to investigate the FBI is “nakedly corrupt.” Wittes accused Trump of attempting to derail an investigation into his conduct.
Wittes asserted that although Trump has the legal authority to demand an investigation into the FBI, he doubted either Wray or Rosenstein could follow through with such an order.
“So if the President really gives Rod Rosenstein or Chris Wray an order (as opposed to Twitter bluster) demanding a particular investigation not properly predicated under FBI/DOJ guidelines for this overtly political purpose, I believe both men will resign rather than comply,” Wittes wrote.
So if the President really gives Rod Rosenstein or Chris Wray an order (as opposed to Twitter bluster) demanding a particular investigation not properly predicated under FBI/DOJ guidelines for this overtly political purpose, I believe both men will resign rather than comply. /6/
— Benjamin Wittes (@benjaminwittes) May 20, 2018
- This article originally appeared on HuffPost.
Source Article from https://www.yahoo.com/news/trump-sets-showdown-doj-over-194417664.html
Please support NewsBusters today! (a 501c3 non-profit production of the Media Research Center)
Former astronaut Mark Kelly, husband of shooting survivor and former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.), accused President Donald Trump Friday of capitulating to the National Rifle Association after the Parkland school shooting and doing nothing for America’s children.
Trump promised big changes after the February shooting in Parkland, Florida, where 17 people were killed.
Trump “spoke very pointedly to a number of U.S. senators and said that they were scared of the NRA and maybe he would have to be the person [to strengthen] background checks,” Kelly said. “That was Tuesday. By Thursday, he’d completely lost interest. And about two months later, he was the speaker at the NRA convention in Dallas.”
Cooper referred to a statistic reported Friday by The Washington Post that more people have been killed in U.S. schools this year than people serving in the military.
Kelly responded: “It’s ridiculous that these kids have to live in a country, these kids in Santa Fe or in Parkland or 22 other places around the country just this year alone, that they have to assume that kind of risk when they go to school.”
He added: “To see our elected leaders do nothing over and over again, it’s just an incredibly sad situation.”
Check out the rest of what Kelly had to say in the video above.
- This article originally appeared on HuffPost.
Source Article from https://www.yahoo.com/news/mark-kelly-trump-rolled-over-055654287.html
Hour 3 – Paul Rosenberg (Freeman’s Perspective) on investing in Bitcoin and other crypto, Cryptocurrencies and their future, etc…
Paul Rosenberg knows a lot about a lot of things. A lifestyle capitalist with a broad range of interests and experiences under his belt, current passions include philosophy, theology, history, psychology, and physics. This diverse interest base is reflected in his extensive repertoire of published titles, including A Lodging of Wayfaring Men, The Words of the Founders, and Production Versus Plunder, not to mention 55 engineering and construction books.
Prior to this, his highly successful engineering career saw him called as an expert witness in numerous legal cases and recruited as a consultant to a number of high profile organizations, such as NASA and the US military. He developed and taught 19 continuing education courses for Iowa State University’s College of Engineering. He also co-founded the Fiber Optic Association and wrote the first ever standard for the installation of fiber optic cables.
Paul Rosenberg has been featured on or at:
The Daily Paul
Early to Rise
The Burning Platform
Global Wealth Protection
Paul’s previous interviews on the Declare Your Independence with Ernest Hancock Radio Show:
Paul’s recent articles…
FREEMANSPERSPECTIVE · May 16th, 2018
After several quiet months, I’m hearing of more and more people who want to get involved with cryptocurrencies, and not just buying and selling. I’m hearing about people who want to start crypto-related businesses, even things like crypto-themed bars. These people need some orientation and most long-time crypto advocates are simply too overwhelmed to help much. So, if you’re thinking of getting involved with cryptocurrencies, I’d like to give you …
FREEMANSPERSPECTIVE · May 15th, 2018
I’ve been in and around the US justice system for most of my life. I’ve always had relatives and friends who were lawyers, and I worked as an expert witness for more than 30 years. And however much I may disregard the state as an institution, I hold great regard for the common law, upon which the US justice system was based. So, when I tell you that Ross Ulbricht’s …
FREEMANSPERSPECTIVE · May 8th, 2018
Most young people know nothing but the world as it is. Their teachers assure them that this is the best form of human organization, all authority agrees, and their parents toe the party line. The system is geared to keep them shuffling forward quietly unto death. What a waste. What a crime. What a bore. “Live dangerously and you live right.” This line comes from the great author Johann Wolfgang …
FREEMANSPERSPECTIVE · May 1st, 2018
I don’t particularly like the phrase, “the one percent.” It reeks of envy and thus of socialism. But at the same time, the wealthiest people in the West really have become much wealthier in the past decade or two, while working people have, perhaps, stayed even. That’s a legitimate issue, regardless of the unfortunate terminology. The roots of this go back to the changes of the 1980s, when the financialization …
FREEMANSPERSPECTIVE · Apr 24th, 2018
I hope that none of my regular readers are burdened with much debt, but I know that many people are. Sometimes shockingly so. And so I’d like to explain who’s really to blame for these situations, because they are more complex than they may at first appear.
FREEMANSPERSPECTIVE · Apr 17th, 2018
Whatever complaints we may have about the US Constitution, it’s hard not to appreciate this phrase in its preamble: [to] secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity… The problem of course is that the word “liberty” has been so abused that it no longer has a clear meaning. It’s used as a “hooray for us” term and not a great deal more.
FREEMANSPERSPECTIVE · Apr 11th, 2018
War drums are beating again, and fairly seriously, it seems. And so I’d like to make a few points before things get out of hand. Because once the bodies start piling up, instincts will be overloaded, and reason will be difficult. So, here are a few things to think about ahead of time: #1: War is failure. And if we get a war now based upon an uncertain attack leaving …
FREEMANSPERSPECTIVE · Apr 10th, 2018
Roughly 98% of us have a deep-rooted connection to morality. Even confirmed criminals routinely say things like, “That ain’t right,” which is purely a moral judgment. However well or poorly we use it, nearly all of us hold morality as a central reference. And this is true across nearly the whole sweep of life. Take a hard look into any workplace and you’ll find that nearly every interaction is tied …
FREEMANSPERSPECTIVE · Apr 5th, 2018
The crypto economy can’t get here fast enough. In addition to writing, I manage businesses. And as I review the financial records of these businesses every year, I see corporate parasitism biting them worse and worse. But if pushed, the bosses of these outfits would claim free market justification. After all, they didn’t hold a gun to anyone’s head! But they do hold the proverbial gun. More precisely, they arrange …
JFK assassination and cover-up
Hour 3 – Jacob Hornberger (Future of Freedom Foundation) on JFK/RFK; Trump’s decision to seal JFK records until 2021
JACOB’S LATEST ARTICLES…
May 9, 2018
One of the favorite arguments that proponents of immigration controls use to justify their position is the national-homeland concept. They say that America is a national homeland and, therefore, that the federal government legitimately wields the omnipotent power to …
May 8, 2018
Mark my words: American leftists who are celebrating the 200th anniversary of Karl Marx’s birthday will not make any mention of the problem of economic calculation under socialism. The reason? The calculation problem reveals that socialism is an inherently …
May 7, 2018
Not surprisingly, the American left are among those in the world who are honoring the 200th birthday of Karl Marx, the author of the Communist Manifesto, given that Marx’s socialist philosophy forms the bulwark of leftist economic thought. Among the …
May 4, 2018
Three years ago, I wrote an article entitled “JFK and the Inconceivable Doctrine,” in which I pointed how many lone-nut theorists in the JFK assassination have reached their conclusion based not on an examination of the circumstantial evidence …
May 3, 2018
I recently received a U.S. golden dollar from a vending machine. What a pathetic thing. Golden in color, Wikipedia reports that it actually has “a copper core clad by manganese brass.” Needless to say, this golden coin is nothing like …
May 2, 2018
Did President Trump grant the CIA an additional 3 1/2 years of secrecy on its JFK assassination-related records because he truly believed that “national security” was at stake? Or did Trump grant the CIA’s request for continued secrecy as …
May 1, 2018
While pundits can engage in endless debate over whether President Trump’s sanctions forced North Korean dictator Kim Jung-un to the negotiating table or whether Kim’s threat of firing nuclear weapons at the United States forced Trump to the negotiating …
In its April 2018 Monthly Treasury Statement, the federal government reported that it ran an all-time single-month record $214 billion surplus, primarily because it took in a record $510 billion in receipts. The Associated Press’s Josh Boak ignored the collections record, even though the AP noted the previous record when it occurred in 2015. Instead, Boak presented a different and far smaller out-of-context collections figure, and falsely claimed that the Republican Congress’s tax cuts are responsible for the increase in fiscal 2018’s seven-month budget deficit compared to last year. This negligence irresponsibly enables leftist pundits to continue to scream that the tax cuts aren’t working, despite growing evidence that they really are.
Federal tax collections are highest every April because final payments of prior-year income taxes and current-year first-quarter estimated payments are due from entrepreneurs, business owners, and investors who otherwise don’t have taxes withheld.
The previous single-month collections record was $471.8 billion in April 2015. The $510.4 billion collected last month smashes that previous high by over 8 percent, and is 12 percent greater than the $455.6 billion collected in April 2017.
April’s record collections figure was also significantly higher than the Congressional Budget Office anticipated, as it admitted on May 7:
Receipts collected in April were $30 billion to $40 billion larger than CBO expected when it prepared the estimates reported in The Budget and Economic Outlook: 2018 to 2028, which it issued on April 9.
Boak pretended in his May 10 AP story that the only April collections-related figure worth mentioning was one representing about 60 percent of its grand total:
Boak also failed to note that April’s $314 billion in income-tax collections was a stunning 26 percent higher than the $249 billion collected in April 2017.
AP recognized the Obama era’s previous April 2015 record, even in a shorter blurb in the May 13, 2015 New York Times:
Boak’s attempt to blame the tax cuts for this year’s deficit increase is especially risible:
- The government’s fiscal year runs from October to September. Tax cuts which became law in late December obviously had little impact on fiscal 2018’s first quarter.
- Total collections through this year’s first seven months are $79 billion (4.1 percent) higher than last year’s comparable figure.
- The problem is spending, which through seven months is up by $120 billion (5.2 percent) over last year.
In a May 10 editorial, Investor’s Business Daily cited April’s collections as evidence that “those of us who predicted the pro-growth tax cuts would at least partially pay for themselves through increased economic growth were correct.”
Less widely distributed Reuters and Bloomberg dispatches cited April’s $510 billion in collections. Yet the AP’s Boak didn’t, likely because disclosing it would have discredited his inane “blame the tax cuts” claim.
On Monday, thanks at least partially to the misleading cover provided by AP, Politico columnist Brian Faler claimed that the “GOP tax cut not why economy is booming.”
As long as AP’s gatekeepers won’t report basic truths, rubbish like Faler’s will proliferate.
Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.