“Inspector General Michael Horowitz is currently investigating how the FISA processes and FISA Court was used by the DOJ and FBI to conduct surveillance on Trump campaign. Additionally, congress is requesting several witnesses appear before hearings to discuss their involvement in the events around the 2016 presidential election and the use of the intelligence apparatus of the U.S. government to influence the outcome.
However, to gain an idea of how the FISA inquiry is likely to end; perhaps it is worthwhile to look at how the IG viewed, and constructed, the last report (full pdf below). Within the content of the released report it becomes obvious the Obama DOJ and FBI constructed a dual system of justice. Political ideology determines which process to follow.
This is the second in a four part series of reports on the Department of Justice Inspector General’s report on the investigation of Hillary Clinton by the FBI and Justice Department. Part one is here. Part three and four follow.”
(…) “Over 640,000 people have read the IG report from our SCRIBD link alone. Tens of millions more have likely read parts or the majority from other links to the report. In essence, unlike all prior aspects of the government hiding material, a much larger percentage of the American population is currently awake and holding direct knowledge of what has taken place.” (Read more: Conservative Treehouse, 7/05/2018)
Hillary Clinton, James Comey and Loretta Lynch (Credit: World Tribune)
“The FBI had little problem leaking “unverified” dirt from Russian sources on Donald Trump and his campaign aides – and even basing FISA wiretaps on it. But according to the Justice Department’s inspector general, the bureau is refusing to allow even members of Congress with top security clearance to see intercepted material alleging political interference by President Obama’s attorney general, Loretta Lynch.
That material – which has been outlined in press reports – consists of unverified accounts intercepted from putative Russian sources in which the head of the Democratic National Committee allegedly implicates the Hillary Clinton campaign and Lynch in a secret deal to fix the Clinton email investigation.”
(…) “True or false, the material is consequential because it appears to have influenced former FBI Director James B. Comey’s decision to break with bureau protocols because he didn’t trust Lynch. In his recent book, Comey said he took the reins in the Clinton email probe, announcing Clinton should not be indicted, because of a “development still unknown to the American public” that “cast serious doubt” on Lynch’s credibility – clearly the intercepted material.
If the material documents an authentic exchange between Lynch and a Clinton aide, it would appear to be strong evidence that the Obama administration put partisan political considerations ahead of its duty to enforce the law.
The information remains so secret that Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz had to censor it from his recently released 500-plus-page report on the FBI’s investigation of Clinton, and even withhold it from Congress.”
(…) “The contents of the secret intelligence document — which purport to show that Lynch informed the Clinton campaign she’d make sure the FBI didn’t push too hard — were included in the inspector general’s original draft. But in the official IG report issued June 14, the information was tucked into a classified appendix to the report and entirely blanked out.
“The information was classified at such a high level by the intelligence community that it limited even the members [of Congress] who can see it, as well as the staffs,” Horowitz explained last week to annoyed Republican members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which has oversight authority over Justice and the FBI.” (Read more: RealClearInvestigations, 6/26/2018)
Peter Strzok (Credit: Saul Loeb/Agence France Presse/Getty Images
“Attorney General Jeff Sessions confirmed Thursday that embattled anti-Trump FBI official, Peter Strzok, no longer has his security clearance.
This news comes just days after Strzok’s attorney confirmed that the agent was escorted out of FBI headquarters following the bombshell Inspector General’s report on the bureau’s mishandling of the Clinton email investigation.
In an interview with radio host, Howie Carr, Sessions said, “Mr. Strzok, as I understand, has lost his security clearance.” Despite losing his clearance, the Attorney General said it was his “understanding” that Strzok remained on the FBI’s payroll, but that he wasn’t sure.” (Read more: Sarah Carter, 6/22/2018)
Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton made the following statement regarding the Justice Department’s Inspector General’s report:
“The IG report has destroyed the credibility of the Department of Justice and the FBI. It confirms what Judicial Watch has investigated and revealed for nearly two years. The Obama DOJ/FBI investigation of Clinton was rushed, half-baked, rigged, and irredeemably compromised by anti-Trump and pro-Clinton bias and actions. As Judicial Watch uncovered the Clinton email scandal, it is outrageous to see a politicized FBI and DOJ then so obviously refuse to uphold the rule of law.
The IG report details repeated DOJ/FBI deference to Hillary Clinton, her aides and their lawyers. Americans should examine the report and judge for themselves whether the over-the-top deference to Hillary Clinton can be explained as anything other than political, especially from agencies that at the same time were actively collaborating with the Clinton campaign’s Fusion GPS to spy on and target then-candidate Trump. The IG report details how at least five top FBI agents and lawyers exchanged pro-Clinton and anti-Trump communications. The IG shares the concerns of Judicial Watch and millions of Americans that this bias cast a cloud over the credibility of the Clinton email and Russia investigations.
As Judicial Watch has demonstrated through its independent investigations and lawsuits, there is more than enough evidence that Clinton knowingly and intentionally mishandled classified information while using a non-government email system to conduct government business.
Will the Sessions Justice Department now do the right thing and conduct a Clinton email investigation properly? Or will it let James Comey and Loretta Lynch have the last word on Hillary Clinton’s evident email crimes?
In the meantime, Judicial Watch will continue its ongoing FOIA lawsuits and investigations into the Clinton email scandal and the related Obama administration cover-up.
Judicial Watch has numerous lawsuits and document productions regarding the issues raised by the IG, including the conduct of Andrew McCabe, the Clinton-Lynch tarmac meeting, the Strzok-Page communications, the FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton, and DOJ collusion with the Clinton campaign.
Inspector General Michael Horowitz, who was appointed by President Obama, has been investigating allegations of wrongdoing within the federal law-enforcement agencies since January 12, 2017. Horowitz opened a separate investigation into James Comey on April 20 over classified information stemming from his memo leaks.
Horowitz previously released a report stating that former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe was dishonest with investigators about how sensitive information from the agency ended up in The Wall Street Journal in 2016, which was the basis for his termination and criminal referrals by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein last May. Former Attorney General Loretta Lynch, who met with former President Bill Clinton just days before Hillary’s FBI interview, was also a subject of Horowitz’s report.” (Read more: Judicial Watch, 6/14/2018)
Department of Justice Office of Inspector General Logo (Credit: public domain)
“The long-awaited watchdog report on the FBI and DOJ’s Hillary Clinton investigation during the 2016 presidential campaign will be released next Thursday, Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz said.
The inspector general also told committee chairman Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, in the letter that he has accepted the invitation to testify about the report on June 18, meaning his scheduled appearance before the committee is being delayed again.” (Read more: Fox News, 6/07/2018)
(…) “President Donald Trump suggested in August last year that Clinton’s emails were obtained by China.
The president was likely responding to a report released days earlier by the Daily Caller, citing two anonymous sources, claiming that a Chinese-owned company operating in the Washington area obtained nearly all of Clinton’s emails. The firm received Clinton’s emails in real time using a code embedded on a private, unauthorized email server she used for government work while she was secretary of state, the report alleged. Fox News confirmed the Daily Caller report, citing two anonymous sources. It isn’t clear if the Fox sources are different from those used by the Daily Caller.
Kable and Chappell served as section chiefs at the bureau’s counterintelligence division alongside Strzok during the early days of the Clinton-email investigation. Both Kable and Chappell have expertise in Chinese espionage, a factor which, if the media reports about China are true, may have initially contributed to their selection for the Clinton-email team.
Kable led investigations against “known and suspected Chinese intelligence officers in the U.S.” for a year and five months starting in 2009, according to an FBI promotion notice and his LinkedIn profile. While little is known about Chappell’s time at the FBI, he was cited among experts on Chinese espionage in a Fox News article published two weeks after the start of the Clinton-email probe. Executive Assistant Director Randall Coleman, the senior most official overseeing the email probe, is also cited in the article, as well as the related FBI press release.
Despite playing a prominent role in the investigation, Kable’s name isn’t mentioned in Horowitz’s otherwise voluminous and exhaustive report (pdf) on the handling of the Clinton-email investigation. Chappell, who met the ICIG and worked in counterespionage, also isn’t mentioned in the report. The FBI wouldn’t confirm whether Chappell still works for the bureau.
With the exception of Comey, every person in the chain of command above Strzok was replaced at different points during the Clinton-email investigation. On Dec. 9, 2015, Comey moved Kable out of FBI headquarters to the Washington field office, ending his term on the Clinton-email probe.
Bill Priestap (Credit: Jacquelyn Martin/The Associated Press)
Two weeks after Kable’s departure, Comey appointed Bill Priestap to serve as assistant director of the FBI’s Counterintelligence Division, replacing Randall Coleman, who held the same position until Dec. 21, 2015. A month later, Comey appointed Andrew McCabe to replace Mark Giuliano as deputy director, and the following month, Comey appointed Michael Steinbach to replace Giacalone as the executive assistant director for the National Security Branch.
If Kable was the fourth person present at the meeting when Rucker told FBI about the email metadata anomalies, Strzok would be the only official who learned of the ICIG lead and remained on the Clinton-email investigation until it was concluded.
Priestap, who arrived six months after the ICIG anomaly referral, told lawmakers on June 5 last year that he didn’t know Frank Rucker, the ICIG investigator, and that he was never informed of the referral on the anomalies in the metadata in Clinton’s emails. Strzok reported to Priestap.” (Read more: The Epoch Times, 1/29/2019)
Andrew McCabe (l), Lisa Page and Peter Strzok (Credit: The Daily Caller)
“Text messages sent between Strzok and Page, which were first obtained by DOJ Inspector General Michael Horowitz, suggest that McCabe was a preferred line of direct communication for Strzok. These same texts indicate that both Strzok and Page frequently met directly with McCabe. Priestap admitted he did not know the frequency of such meetings:
Mr. Brebbia: “Would they frequently meet with then Deputy Director McCabe without you being there?”
Mr. Priestap: “No. I have no idea of the frequency in which that might have occurred. But while responsible for this case, I couldn’t drop the thousands of others cases and matters, issues I was responsible for. And so I had numerous regular meetings outside of the office with other U.S. Government entities, what have you.
“And as a result, in this particular case, Pete would often be a point person if I was, for example, half the day at the Central Intelligence Agency, and things came up, they could go direct — ‘they’ meaning my 7th floor, EAD, deputy director, would know they could go straight, of course, with Pete.
“So I would think — I have no idea of the exact numbers, but these meetings absolutely would have occurred without me.”
A report published by Horowitz in June last year, which reviewed the FBI’s investigation of the Clinton email case, included the notable statement that several witnesses had informed the IG that Page “circumvented the official chain of command, and that Strzok communicated important Midyear case information to her, and thus to McCabe, without Priestap’s or Steinbach’s knowledge.” Steinbach, who was the executive assistant director and Priestap’s direct supervisor, left the FBI in early 2017.
Page’s role as special counsel to McCabe has been described by former FBI general counsel James Baker in congressional testimony as being both unique and undefined.
“I expected them [Page and McCabe] to report back to me about important things. And I had leave it to both of their discretion to figure out that — what important was, I know it’s kind of vague. But that was how we were supposed to try to work it out,” Baker told lawmakers on Oct. 3, 2018. (Read more: The Epoch Times, 1/29/2019)
(…) “Priestap revealed a surprising level of detail regarding the composition of the team involved in Mid-Year Exam. As Priestap described it, the team comprised three differing but intertwined elements: the filter team, the primary team, and the senior leadership team.
Rick Mains (Credit: Linked In)
Below Strzok and Moffa was a day-to-day investigative “filter” team of approximately 15 FBI agents and analysts that was overseen by Rick Mains, a supervisory special agent who reported directly to Strzok and Moffa. Joining the team were two DOJ lawyers from the Eastern District of Virginia and two attorneys from the DOJ’s National security Division (NSD) who, according to Priestap, were “heavily engaged.” According to testimony from Page, John Carlin, who ran the NSD, was receiving briefings on both investigations directly from McCabe.
The primary team was small, consisting only of Strzok, Moffa, Mains, and, to varying degrees, Moyer. Mains reported to Strzok and Moffa, who, in turn, along with Moyer, provided briefings to Priestap.
The senior leadership team was more fluid, consisting of higher-level officials who provided briefings and updates to Comey, McCabe, or both. In addition to Priestap, Strzok, and Moffa, frequent attendees included Moyer (“sometimes, but not always”); Page (“usually included”); deputy general counsel Trisha Anderson (“sometimes, but not always”); Comey’s chief of staff, Jim Rybicki (“most, if not all of these”); and general counsel Baker (“often in those meetings”).
According to Priestap, Mains was never involved in the senior leadership meetings. Priestap described Mains’ role as being “in charge of the investigative team, the working level, all the day-to-day stuff.”
“[While] we asked his opinion on all kinds of things, we didn’t want him to be tied up in all those other meetings because he needed to advance the investigation. Somebody’s got to ride herd on all the people doing the work,” he said.” (Read more: The Epoch Times, 1/29/2019)
(…) “It was a little after midnight on May 4, 2016. FBI lawyer Lisa Page was texting her paramour, FBI counterespionage agent Peter Strzok, about the most stunning development to date in the 2016 campaign: Donald Trump was now the inevitable Republican nominee. He would square off against Hillary Clinton, the Democrats’ certain standard-bearer.
The race was set . . . between two major-party candidates who were both under investigation by the FBI.
In stunned response, Strzok wrote what may be the only words we need to know, the words that reflected the mindset of his agency’s leadership and of the Obama administration: “Now the pressure really starts to finish MYE.”
MYE. That’s Mid-Year Exam, the code-word the FBI had given to the Hillary Clinton emails probe.”
(…) “When Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s shameful Arizona tarmac meeting with former President Clinton becomes a scandal in late June, she tries to mitigate the damage by announcing an intention to accept whatever recommendation the FBI makes. Lisa Page spitefully texts Peter Strzok. “And yeah, it’s a real profile in couragw [sic], since she knows no charges will be brought.”
That was July 1. The very next day, the FBI does its just-for-show interview of Mrs. Clinton. Three mornings later, July 5 (at the start of the work week after Independence Day), Comey holds his press conference to announce that, of course, no charges will be brought.
To accomplish this, he effectively rewrites the classified-information statute Clinton violated; barely mentions the tens of thousands of official government business emails that she destroyed; claims without any elaboration that the FBI can see no evidence of obstruction; and omits mention of her just-concluded interview in which — among other things — she pretended not to know what the markings on classified documents meant.
On the very same day, the FBI’s legal attaché in Rome travels to London to interview Christopher Steele, who has already started to pass his sensational dossier allegations to the bureau. And with the help of CIA director John Brennan and British intelligence, the FBI is ready to run a spy — a longtime CIA source — at Carter Page in London on July 11, just as he arrives there from Moscow.
With the pressure to finish MYE in the rearview mirror, Hillary Clinton looked like a shoo-in to beat Donald Trump. By mid September, Lisa Page was saying as much at a meeting in Deputy Director McCabe’s office. But Strzok was hedging his bets: Maybe “there’s no way [Trump] gets elected — but I’m afraid we can’t take that risk. It’s like an insurance policy in the unlikely event you die before you’re 40.”
Soon, as the campaign wound down, the FBI and the Obama Justice Department were on the doormat of the FISA court, obtaining a surveillance warrant on Carter Page, substantially based on allegations in the Steele dossier — an uncorroborated Clinton-campaign opposition-research screed. Meanwhile, the FBI/CIA spy was being run at George Papadopoulos, and even seeking a role in the Trump campaign from its co-chairman, Sam Clovis.
Department of Justice, Office of the Inspector General Logo (Credit: public domain)
“Multiple subjects of a report on the Justice Department’s handling of a 2016 investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email use have been notified that they can privately review the report by week’s end, signaling the long-awaited document is nearing release.
The report is likely to reignite the volatile debate over the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s handling of the Clinton probe, and it will put Michael Horowitz, the Justice Department’s inspector general, in a familiar place—taking aim at members of the law enforcement community.
Those invited to review the report were told they would have to sign nondisclosure agreements in order to read it, people familiar with the matter said. They are expected to have a few days to craft a response to any criticism in the report, which will then be incorporated in the final version to be released in coming weeks.
Mr. Horowitz told lawmakers last month he expected to issue the report in May, but Tuesday’s notification is the first indication that Mr. Horowitz has largely completed his inquiry. Congressional committees are expected to review the report in coming weeks. (Read more: Wall Street Journal, 5/16/2018)